This topic is about players who've been on tour for a long time.
Recently I have taken notice of Mauresmo and Hingis plummeting down the ranks. It seems that every tournament they enter, they either choke in the first rounds or get kicked out the house by some noob tennis player.
This should not be possible considering their theoretical capability of playing high level tennis. Havent they adapt enough to the modern day game?
It's been a very long time since Mauresmo has won a slam, hasn't it. Oh yeah, 2006. Two of them. Guess she really failed to adapt to the modern game.
I guess Serena is an example of this as well. When you compare her to Henin in the quest for no.1. Just hitting hard isn't enough. Henin worked hard to open up her game. So that it could be effective on other courts than clay.
Serena doesn't hit hard nearly as often as she did in 2002, and she uses a lot more topspin. Arguably, by 'adapting', she's winning LESS often.
But what about the likes of Schnyder and Dementieva? These girls prove that you can be consistent even without the need to adapt. These women have played with same approach throughout their entire careers and have maintained a fairly consistent ranking along with it.
Both rely on tremendous footwork and overall fitness, which can be a weapon against anyone at any time...
Punching people is an effective weapon in wartime, but it usually loses to an AK47. Schyder and Dementieva may be consistent, but they don't win slams. Arguably, they don't even come close. (Dementieva's performance in slam finals ... ugh) Serena's won eight slams including one this year. Mauresmo won two last year.
Your arguement might have merit, but you're using the wrong examples. Serena Williams and Amelie Mauresmo have both vastly changed their games since their first slam finals (both in 1999, oddly enough). Those two HAVE adapted. And Hingis has tried.
She's just not that elite of a physical specimen. Go back to wood rackets and Hingis could still win slams.