Favorites for OZ: How do YOU decide?
We all have our favorites. We all have our favorites to win certain titles. How do you pick them? How do you decide who should be favored to win OZ?
Here are some of my factors in making a choice.
Health. Generally, you don't win OZ if you're injured.
The defending champ. Kind of obvious, but outside of injury, players rarely lose the ability to win a title in a single year
The winner of the last big tournament. Again, a bit obvious, but at least it tells you who;s playing well at the time. And of course, 'big tournament' a somewhat subjective. Some years Sydney is a 'big' tournament, despite being a Tier II, because of who plays. Whereas the 'big' tournament before Wimbledon is basically the French. Right now, the last big tournament before OZ is the YEC. We'll see who plays Sydney.
History at the tournament. Serena has won it three of the last six times. And this tournament has recently lent itself to multiple winners. Capriati won it twice. Hingis three times, Serena three times.
Prep. Players prepare SO diferently for the season. Some, clearly, aim to peak late inthe season. See Venus. Whereas in ten years (1998-2007), Martina Hingis made the finals or won of Sydney four times, OZ six times, and TPP eight times.
History on the Surface. This is last for reason. They 'tune' this surface. Some years it's lighning fast, some yeas it's the next slowest thing to green clay. And the summe weathe affects it too. The slower it is, the more it favors retrievers.
SO WHY is any given palyers going to win OZ?
Proud to be an American
Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.