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post #1 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 12:56 AM Thread Starter
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Venus Williams Looking Ahead

Following a dismal performance at AO 2010, does this become a turning point for Venus Williams?

There is no question that Venus is stuborn and reluctant to get out of her comfort(should we say discomfort now) zone and make some serious decision about her future.

I am no pshycologyst or psychiatrist, but I don't think athletes who have been at the top of their sport, are content to continue their career as journeymen (journeywomen).
It is that fear of anonymity and "blandness" that drove them to strive to be the best in the first place.

Either Venus decides to overhaul her game and approach to tennis
Or she retires and dedicates herself to her company or other social causes.

Of course having been a fan of hers from the start, I would like her to follow Agassi's example and retool her game for a last hoorah.
The question is, this requires dedication and commitment, can she do it?
Unlike Andre, Venus has her sister as support and role model. It would be up to her to start the ball rolling


I realize Venus does not read this forum, so please refrain from make comment like do you really think Venus would listen to you?
This is just an exercise to engage all posters( fans or detractors alike) to give their 2 cents.
I am convinced many of you have something to say after Venus participation in this tournament.

For me, my concerns go back to couple of years, but I could not make a dent in bringing it up into the open. It was always dead on arrival. Many claiming there was "nothing wrong with Venus Willians", "she has always been like that..."

Now the inevitable has occured, maybe this can be discussed openly now.

I know it is tempting, but please refrain from the usual drive by posting, looking for a fight.

Last edited by tennislover22; Jan 29th, 2010 at 09:49 PM.
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post #2 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:05 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

I agree with most of what you said, but look @ the big picture: She lost in three sets in the quarters of the same Slam she lost @ in the 2nd rd last year. Is that really all that dismal?

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post #3 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by Pureracket View Post
I agree with most of what you said, but look @ the big picture: She lost in three sets in the quarters of the same Slam she lost @ in the 2nd rd last year. Is that really all that dismal?
Yes, I believe it was dismal, but I am not going to push that point.

It is not how far she went in the tournament, it the drip-drip effect that finally culminated in losing there for the taking. Her out pouring of negative emotions, even when leading, was just hard to watch live
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post #4 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:19 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by tennisbum79 View Post
Yes, I believe it was dismal, but I am not going to push that point.

It is not how far she went in the tournament, it the drip-drip effect that finally culminated in losing there for the taking. Her out pouring of negative emotions, even when leading, was just hard to watch live
Well this is the most consistent I've seen Venus at a slam outside of Wimbledon in almost two years.
She didn't seem to have any injuries.
Her groundstrokes were consistent for her.
There was a lot of positives she can take from this tourni.
Although I believe that Kim and Justine will find their way into the top 5 by the end of the year, I don't see Venus leaving the top 10 because of it.
I expect Venus to be the most consistent she's been in all of the tournis (ITF and WTA) in years.

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post #5 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:21 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

I obviously haven't followed the Venus saga for as long as many posters here, but if there is a problem with Venus's game (and there obviously is), she may be more reluctant to face up to them when she's still reaching Wimbledon finals, winning Wimbledon, winning the YEC, reaching the YEC finals. While the last couple of years may not have been great for her, let's remember that for from 2002 to 2004, despite showing some great tennis, she didn't win a slam. Of course, you have Serena in the way, but I guess the point is she was still playing much better tennis during that stretch in 2002 and 2003 than she is now.

It hasn't all been bad. I thought her HC game in 2007 USO series was some of the best HC tennis we've seen from Venus since she won in 2001. She was aggressive, she was hitting with conviction and she was mostly positive about where her game could take her. And she made it to the USO SF that year -- her first no Wimbledon final four since the 2003 Australian Open. To be honest, she's been bringing it in the USO -- she's only lost to the eventual champion the last 3 years.

Even before all of this started happening, Venus has only really done well in Wimbledon and the USO. She has never really been a threat in the beginning of the year, not at the French and until recently not at the end of the year, either.
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post #6 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:24 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by Pureracket View Post
I agree with most of what you said, but look @ the big picture: She lost in three sets in the quarters of the same Slam she lost @ in the 2nd rd last year. Is that really all that dismal?
Did not you see the match I mean Venus choked tremendously to lose that match against a player she should have beeaten, 16 seeded player.

Do you think overcoming a second round from the previous year is a great achievement for a player of the caliber of Venus

I don´t think so...

The rare thing is that Venus looked pretty good on her first three matches, rock solid against troublesome players, and then it all started against Schiavone, until finally losing to Na Li in one of the worst matches of the tournament @+110 unforced error fest match.

That being said i saw Venus with phisical problems, she looked exhausted vs Na... any words on that ?

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post #7 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:28 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by shap_half View Post

Even before all of this started happening, Venus has only really done well in Wimbledon and the USO. She has never really been a threat in the beginning of the year, not at the French and until recently not at the end of the year, either.
In one year, she did reach both RG and Wimbleon, both won by Serena.
Even though that was one, early she was very competitve on Clay and excellent palyer on hard court.
So I do not accet your contenton she has only been good on grass.

But we are talking now..
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post #8 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:29 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

I don't know, it's as if she's lost patience, granted she didn't do bad in that she lost a 3-setter deep in the tournament but by Venus and her fans' standards that is poor.
The problem is Venus doesn't always produce what she's capable of and that's very frustrating for fans of hers.

She doesn't seem to have belief in her shots anymore, you know I don't play tennis but I can view that if you want something to be effective, it needs to be perfected and tried over and over again.
This isn't really a rock bottom in terms of what Sharapova is facing but I think this game is probably one of her worst and definitely will require some sort of change.

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post #9 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:32 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by spencercarlos View Post
Did not you see the match I mean Venus choked tremendously to lose that match against a player she should have beeaten, 16 seeded player.

Do you think overcoming a second round from the previous year is a great achievement for a player of the caliber of Venus

I don´t think so...

The rare thing is that Venus looked pretty good on her first three matches, rock solid against troublesome players, and then it all started against Schiavone, until finally losing to Na Li in one of the worst matches of the tournament @+110 unforced error fest match.

That being said i saw Venus with phisical problems, she looked exhausted vs Na... any words on that ?
Dude, the OP asked for you not do this. Your whole identity on this board is based on your hatred of Venus, even down to your pic. The OP is trying to have a serious discussion. Your trolling and baiting of her threads is one of the great mysteries of this board. That's all I'm going to say to you here.

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post #10 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:37 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

Well, with Venus it's truly a mystery. I have never understood how she can never perform well at the Australian Open. Some of her losses have come against top players, but that was when she was at hear peak (loss to Hingis 6-1 6-1 and to Seles the next year). But following that, her losses have been quite baffling, I mean, she's been choking to MUCH lower ranked players after that.

IMO with Venus, it's a very intrinsic thing. She needs to feel somewhat connected to the tournament to have that rush of confidence. That's why she plays well at Wimbledon and at the Us Open. When she's connected, she's confident. Otherwise, as stoic she she may appear on the outside, she's probably a crumbling hot mess on the inside. She needs to understand that the name "Venus Williams" does not hold the same intimidating power it used to have in the past. She needs to know that it is Serena that people "fear".

As for her game, the problem is that Venus and Serena truly brought power hitting to a whole new level. Yes, Monica, Lindsay and Mary were power hitters, but they were nowhere near as quick around the court. Venus had it all, power, speed and fearlessness. The problem is that the generation that followed modeled their games around this as well. Serena pushed on but Venus just stopped, seemingly happy with what she had thinking that it would be enough. But when players started getting consistent with their strokes and started adding variety to their games, what Venus had wasn't enough.

Now, Serena may have regressed in her speed, but she's still pretty damn fast and her serve now is better than it has ever been. Venus is still quick and nimble and has a terrific net-game, but her strokes and her serve have almost gotten to become second rate.

Can she turn this around? I really hope so. Age is catching up and I have a feeling that Venus has too much pride to actually remodel her game. Doing that would tell everyone that she thinks something is wrong with her game. Still, I'm hoping she takes a page out of Serena's book and does what she needs to to make a push for true greatness.

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post #11 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:49 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by tennisbum79 View Post
In one year, she did reach both RG and Wimbleon, both won by Serena.
Even though that was one, early she was very competitve on Clay and excellent palyer on hard court.
So I do not accet your contenton she has only been good on grass.

But we are talking now..
I never said she was only good on grass. I know that Venus is very good on hard courts, and noted it as such. But other than during the Serena Slam stretch, Venus wasn't really competing for the Australian Open or the French Open in the same way she was in Wimbledon and the USO. And yes, she has built a strong clay court resume, but really her French Open background is not impressive at all for a top player.

Venus's strength is between Wimbledon and the USO. It has always been that way and it has remained that way. If anything, we have seen improvement in her post-USO results the last couple of years.

Again, I'm not saying her game doesn't need improvement. I'm saying, if she's showing signs of progress in her results, I can understand why she would reluctant to make changes in her game.
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post #12 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:50 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by skanky~skanketta View Post
Well, with Venus it's truly a mystery. I have never understood how she can never perform well at the Australian Open. Some of her losses have come against top players, but that was when she was at hear peak (loss to Hingis 6-1 6-1 and to Seles the next year). But following that, her losses have been quite baffling, I mean, she's been choking to MUCH lower ranked players after that.

IMO with Venus, it's a very intrinsic thing. She needs to feel somewhat connected to the tournament to have that rush of confidence. That's why she plays well at Wimbledon and at the Us Open. When she's connected, she's confident. Otherwise, as stoic she she may appear on the outside, she's probably a crumbling hot mess on the inside. She needs to understand that the name "Venus Williams" does not hold the same intimidating power it used to have in the past. She needs to know that it is Serena that people "fear".

As for her game, the problem is that Venus and Serena truly brought power hitting to a whole new level. Yes, Monica, Lindsay and Mary were power hitters, but they were nowhere near as quick around the court. Venus had it all, power, speed and fearlessness. The problem is that the generation that followed modeled their games around this as well. Serena pushed on but Venus just stopped, seemingly happy with what she had thinking that it would be enough. But when players started getting consistent with their strokes and started adding variety to their games, what Venus had wasn't enough.

Now, Serena may have regressed in her speed, but she's still pretty damn fast and her serve now is better than it has ever been. Venus is still quick and nimble and has a terrific net-game, but her strokes and her serve have almost gotten to become second rate.

Can she turn this around? I really hope so. Age is catching up and I have a feeling that Venus has too much pride to actually remodel her game. Doing that would tell everyone that she thinks something is wrong with her game. Still, I'm hoping she takes a page out of Serena's book and does what she needs to to make a push for true greatness.
Very good insight.
Especially the bit about connection to a tournament playing a big role in Venus disposition to do well.

Nobody has yet touched on the possibility of bringing in a new voice in Venus camp.
Frankly, alhtough Oracene and Richard have done a good job, I think famirity has set in an atmosphere of plateau. In addition, I am not sure how hitting partners have benefited Venus Williams.


Someone like Etchvery, who in addition to on court technique, is also credited for working on player's psychological mindset during matches.
I know this is the last thing Venus wil accept, she is so loyal.
Sometimes to her detriment. But is worht exploring for the sake of discusision
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post #13 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 01:59 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

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Originally Posted by shap_half View Post
I never said she was only good on grass. I know that Venus is very good on hard courts, and noted it as such. But other than during the Serena Slam stretch, Venus wasn't really competing for the Australian Open or the French Open in the same way she was in Wimbledon and the USO. And yes, she has built a strong clay court resume, but really her French Open background is not impressive at all for a top player.

Venus's strength is between Wimbledon and the USO. It has always been that way and it has remained that way. If anything, we have seen improvement in her post-USO results the last couple of years.

Again, I'm not saying her game doesn't need improvement. I'm saying, if she's showing signs of progress in her results, I can understand why she would reluctant to make changes in her game.
Point well taken
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post #14 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 02:13 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

Where is Volcana?
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post #15 of 94 (permalink) Old Jan 29th, 2010, 02:15 AM
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Re: Venus Williams Looking Ahead

Quote:
Originally Posted by shap_half View Post
I obviously haven't followed the Venus saga for as long as many posters here, but if there is a problem with Venus's game (and there obviously is), she may be more reluctant to face up to them when she's still reaching Wimbledon finals, winning Wimbledon, winning the YEC, reaching the YEC finals. While the last couple of years may not have been great for her, let's remember that for from 2002 to 2004, despite showing some great tennis, she didn't win a slam. Of course, you have Serena in the way, but I guess the point is she was still playing much better tennis during that stretch in 2002 and 2003 than she is now.

It hasn't all been bad. I thought her HC game in 2007 USO series was some of the best HC tennis we've seen from Venus since she won in 2001. She was aggressive, she was hitting with conviction and she was mostly positive about where her game could take her. And she made it to the USO SF that year -- her first no Wimbledon final four since the 2003 Australian Open. To be honest, she's been bringing it in the USO -- she's only lost to the eventual champion the last 3 years.

Even before all of this started happening, Venus has only really done well in Wimbledon and the USO. She has never really been a threat in the beginning of the year, not at the French and until recently not at the end of the year, either.
Great post! I still think her 2007 USO semi against Justine was one of the finest women's matches I have ever seen, and I have been watching tennis for over 50 years now.
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