Bollettieri tells Maria: 'Hitting hard, flat balls is no longer enough' - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Bollettieri tells Maria: 'Hitting hard, flat balls is no longer enough'

'As for Maria, hitting hard, flat balls is no longer enough. She needs to add to her game, as the best of the rest have added, and are adding'

http://sport.independent.co.uk/tenni...cle1164502.ece

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Dossier: Henin-Hardenne grits teeth to succeed as rivals serve up a treat

Coaching Report: In a battle of the Belgians, Clijsters was enjoying herself but for the victor it was almost a matter of life and death

Published: 07 July 2006



You never saw Justine Henin-Hardenne's teeth until the job was done. That's the essence for me of her two-sets semi-final victory over fellow Belgian, Kim Clijsters, yesterday, in what was a darn good match for the spectators. Both girls played good tennis, moving fine, hitting well, competing. There was real quality out there and it did the stage justice.

The difference in my view was Henin's spunk and determination. You never saw her teeth. She never opened her lips. That was the vast difference. It would have been instructive to take a picture of each girl's face every minute, and at the end line all the shots up and look along them.

On Henin's face there would be nothing, frame after frame. It was almost a trance, no sign of emotion. No little grin of "I'm doing a great job, you're doing a great job, what a show we're giving these good folks". Now look along the Clijsters shots. You see that? There's a little smile, just sometimes. And there's another. And there's the difference. One enjoyed it. For the other, it was a matter of life and death.

One point of interest where single-mindedness manifested itself was with Clijsters a break up in the second, at 3-2 and serving, and Henin had just won the point for 0-15. Then Henin coughed a little and, needing a drink, went to the net and got one. I genuinely have no idea whether this was gamesmanship, something conscious, deliberate. I really don't know, and actually this specific example is not the issue. The interesting thing is if you look back in history to times when players have done something like this - and lots have, and nobody did it better than Johnny Mac, all the time - you need to ask what position were they in right then? Were they down, or ahead?

I'm telling you it happens much more often when the answer is down, at just the time when a break in the opponent's momentum would be quite nice, thank you very much. So is it deliberate or instinctive, or neither? The facts are there, and I don't know in this case. You decide.

Back to Henin's focus, I believe it is just as likely to have been her focus rather than Clijsters' lack of it that caused Clijsters to falter slight at key times, like when she dropped her serve to love in the first set, and dropped it again when 6-5 ahead and serving in the second. Of course it could have been a choke - that's a possibility. But in a good match, I don't think so this time.

On the subject of choking, Amélie Mauresmo held herself together superbly, even after a wobble, to beat Maria Sharapova in three sets and earn herself her first Wimbledon final place after three semis in four years (and she missed the other year). She was excellent, not least mentally. As for Maria, hitting hard, flat balls is no longer enough. She needs to add to her game, as the best of the rest have added, and are adding.

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post #2 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 04:31 PM
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Which is what most people, including objective Masha fans have been saying. And her loss against Amelie was proof positive. But Maria is 19, Amelie 27, so there is plenty of time. As long as Maria has the where withall to develop - and her 'team' (Dad!) are flexible and pragmatic enough to encourage and allow her to. I hope obstinacy and arrogance of 'Daddy knows best' doesn't ruin her chances.
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post #3 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 04:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TalulaTrauma
Which is what most people, including objective Masha fans have been saying. And her loss against Amelie was proof positive. But Maria is 19, Amelie 27, so there is plenty of time. As long as Maria has the where withall to develop - and her 'team' (Dad!) are flexible and pragmatic enough to encourage and allow her to. I hope obstinacy and arrogance of 'Daddy knows best' doesn't ruin her chances.
well I think maria knows that herself and theres signs she's doing it but it won't happen overnight.
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post #4 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 04:37 PM
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she relies on her hard flat strokes thought it can be seen she is trying to mix it up with a few (unsuccessful) volleys and other shots
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post #5 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 04:51 PM
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She came to net a lot more than before at Wimbledon.

Every once in a while you will see her throw in a drop shot or a slice.
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post #6 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 05:38 PM
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The thing is that Maria knows that full well. She's not stupid. You can see she knows it on court by the fact that she is trying to switch it up and she is having moderate success at it. Plus, she said as much in her interview. She's not resting on her laurels at all, she is working on her game, she's got a good attitude and doesn't need to be told this.
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post #7 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 05:56 PM
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He's changed his tune since wimby 2004 and the start of wimby 2005, when he was gloating about making this wonderkid who could do what Anna could but better.

I can't stand his articles for the Independent (they're the worst part of a good wimbledon coverage by the Independent)

He basically spent the first week raping Murray with his articles.
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post #8 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Pov
He's changed his tune since wimby 2004 and the start of wimby 2005, when he was gloating about making this wonderkid who could do what Anna could but better.

I can't stand his articles for the Independent (they're the worst part of a good wimbledon coverage by the Independent)

He basically spent the first week raping Murray with his articles.
Now there's a reason to buy the Independent - hadn't thought of one before! - to see Murray getting shafted! Leave that to the Cypriots anyway!

I don't know what he said in 04/05, but he may well have changed his tune, because what he is saying is that Maria now has to change/develop.

I don't think he's bashing her, and I think everyone is pretty much in agreement. I hope Maria develops and proves everyone wrong and dominates - partly because I personally think the Tour is MUCH better off when someone does, with a great rivalry thrown in - a la Steffi/Monica, Navratilova/Evert and those that went before. And even Venus/Serena. Much more public interest in the sport then. But also even though I diss her now and then I think she is the best thing to have happened to women's tennis since the Williams and could do a great deal for the profile of tennis - more than she already has. I'm sure no one, including Bolli, wants to see that wasted.
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post #9 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TalulaTrauma
Now there's a reason to buy the Independent - hadn't thought of one before! - to see Murray getting shafted! Leave that to the Cypriots anyway!

I don't know what he said in 04/05, but he may well have changed his tune, because what he is saying is that Maria now has to change/develop.

I don't think he's bashing her, and I think everyone is pretty much in agreement. I hope Maria develops and proves everyone wrong and dominates - partly because I personally think the Tour is MUCH better off when someone does, with a great rivalry thrown in - a la Steffi/Monica, Navratilova/Evert and those that went before. And even Venus/Serena. Much more public interest in the sport then. But also even though I diss her now and then I think she is the best thing to have happened to women's tennis since the Williams and could do a great deal for the profile of tennis - more than she already has. I'm sure no one, including Bolli, wants to see that wasted.
I know he's not bashing her, it's just he made out that he was the sole reason she won wimbledon and he made her game "invincible"

Now it's like he's making out he's got nothing to do with her game and it's one dimensionalism.

He just flits between the young popular players, first Maria, now Murray, and probably Vaidisova if she wins a slam soon.
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post #10 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spiceboy
As for Maria, hitting hard, flat balls is no longer enough. She needs to add to her game, as the best of the rest have added, and are adding.

Wasn't it Bollettieri who taught Sharapova to hit hard and flat?

Or am I missing the point?

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post #11 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by watchdogfish
Wasn't it Bollettieri who taught Sharapova to hit hard and flat?

Or am I missing the point?
Exactly!
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post #12 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by watchdogfish
Wasn't it Bollettieri who taught Sharapova to hit hard and flat?

Or am I missing the point?


I heard the Oracle of tennis - none other than Tracy Austin - say it was her old coach. Of course she was asked about Maria so she had to find SOME way of bringing herself into the answer.

You know, the more I hear/see people have a go at her (and I have had a go at her!), the more I actually watch her and take in what she actually says, the more I have warmed to her - so people can change their minds!
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post #13 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:33 PM
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Maria Sharapova isn't gonna change a whole lot. She was breed by Bolliteri to do what she does. She's not gonna abandon what wins for her... and couldn't do if she wanted to.
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post #14 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Pov
I know he's not bashing her, it's just he made out that he was the sole reason she won wimbledon and he made her game "invincible"

Now it's like he's making out he's got nothing to do with her game and it's one dimensionalism.

He just flits between the young popular players, first Maria, now Murray, and probably Vaidisova if she wins a slam soon.

It's very hypocritical of him. Remember all the praise he heaped on Maria during her 2004 season? It seems that he's now quick to criticise her as she's not reached another Grand Slam final since her Wimbledon win.

I don't know if it's the right word but it sounds a little selfish of him. When Maria's doing well it's like it reflects well on him and he wants a piece of the glory, but when she's struggling he's soon criticising her.

You can guarantee if/when she wins another slam he'll heap the praise on her again, even if Maria wins playing hard, flat tennis with no variety!

"Always be yourself. Unless you can be a unicorn. Then always be a unicorn."

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post #15 of 52 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2006, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G_Slammed
Maria Sharapova isn't gonna change a whole lot. She was breed by Bolliteri to do what she does. She's not gonna abandon what wins for her... and couldn't do if she wanted to.
You don't like her do you G_Slammed.

Imagine in 2008 Maria wins the Golden Grand Slam. You'd still say she flunked cause it should have been 6/0 final set instead of 6/1! So just say: I hate Maria and think she is crap. All the time in every post! And of course say she collects stamps in case we forget! By the way, she may have a penny black or penny red - worth millions you know! I mean, how ludicrous is collecting stamps compared to all the other horrors she could be doing!
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