Am I the only one that misses a good road runner? - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

I mean WTA's current tennis is either pusher or baseline power, with some exceptions but... no road runners like Amanda Coetzer I love watching videos of her. also Venus Williams (YES I LIKE WATCHING HER PLAY I PREFER HER A THOUSAND TIMES THAN SERENA) when she ran a lot back in the late 90's/early 2000's. It gives tennis a lot.

The belief that man is an irresolute creature pulled this way and that by two forces of equal strength, alternately winning and losing the battle for his soul; the conviction that human life is nothing more than an uncertain struggle between heaven and hell; the faith in two opposed entities, Satan and Christ - all this was bound to engender those internal discords in which the mind, excited by the incessant fighting, stimulated as it were by the constant promises and threats, ends up by giving in and prostitutes itself to whichever of the two combatants has been more obstinate in its pursuit. Life isn't black and white, it's gold.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:25 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

I don't know exactly what a road runner is.

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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:29 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

I always had a soft spot for the Panova-Smashnova contingent of the tour, the women who had limited skills but were supremely fit and willing to stay out there all day. A mixture of Evert's determination to play as long as it takes to win the point with a far lesser skill set; the ball comes back into the court the same way, no spin or slice or significant pace, but the placement and consistency was something to be amazed by. Also, what makes a player like that able to succeed where you and I would fail is the remarkable anticipation. Panova always impressed me with her anticipation, she knew how EVERY opponent hit the ball and knew where to go on the court. You had to overpower her, which wasn't terribly hard to do, because she would get to the ball. You had to give her something she couldn't put back in the court. May not be the prettiest way to win a match, from her or from you, but it sure was gritty and took real determination.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:35 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammo View Post
I mean WTA's current tennis is either pusher or baseline power, with some exceptions but... no road runners like Amanda Coetzer I love watching videos of her. also Venus Williams (YES I LIKE WATCHING HER PLAY I PREFER HER A THOUSAND TIMES THAN SERENA) when she ran a lot back in the late 90's/early 2000's. It gives tennis a lot.
Yeah watch Coetzer vs Martinez match at Roland Garros 97 and Usopen 98.. Full of joy in each match

Sorry but do i miss Coetzer´s boring fest moonballing? No!!!

Do i miss the days when Venus used to run around the court and spead her full physical strenght Yes.. mentioned this yesterday rewacthing the Usopen 2000 SF.

Speaking of road runners I miss a player like Arantxa was well. She was a mix of everything!! IMO

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18 Grand Slam SF´s, Won 27 titles, 1 GS Sin, 1 GS in Dubs,2 Masters
Sabatini vs Martinez ?
Seasons in the top ten: Sabatini 10 Conchita 9
Straight Seasons in the top ten: Sabatini 10 Conchita 6
Seasons in the top 5: Sabatini 6 Conchita 5
Straight seasons in the top 5: Sabatini 6 Conchita 4
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Sabatini 24 Martinez 17
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Sabatini has 2 titles 2 Runner up and 3 SF
Martinez has 0 titles, 0 RU, and 0 Sf
Record against the best players
Sabatini 40% Martinez 21%
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by spencercarlos View Post
Yeah watch Coetzer vs Martinez match at Roland Garros 97 and Usopen 98.. Full of joy in each match

Sorry but do i miss Coetzer´s boring fest moonballing? No!!!

Do i miss the days when Venus used to run around the court and spead her full physical strenght Yes.. mentioned this yesterday rewacthing the Usopen 2000 SF.

Speaking of road runners I miss a player like Arantxa was well. She was a mix of everything!! IMO
I don't miss Arantxa becoz... I mean she run and that but... she wasn't athletic at all like Coetzer

The belief that man is an irresolute creature pulled this way and that by two forces of equal strength, alternately winning and losing the battle for his soul; the conviction that human life is nothing more than an uncertain struggle between heaven and hell; the faith in two opposed entities, Satan and Christ - all this was bound to engender those internal discords in which the mind, excited by the incessant fighting, stimulated as it were by the constant promises and threats, ends up by giving in and prostitutes itself to whichever of the two combatants has been more obstinate in its pursuit. Life isn't black and white, it's gold.
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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Originally Posted by OsloErik View Post
I always had a soft spot for the Panova-Smashnova contingent of the tour, the women who had limited skills but were supremely fit and willing to stay out there all day. A mixture of Evert's determination to play as long as it takes to win the point with a far lesser skill set; the ball comes back into the court the same way, no spin or slice or significant pace, but the placement and consistency was something to be amazed by. Also, what makes a player like that able to succeed where you and I would fail is the remarkable anticipation. Panova always impressed me with her anticipation, she knew how EVERY opponent hit the ball and knew where to go on the court. You had to overpower her, which wasn't terribly hard to do, because she would get to the ball. You had to give her something she couldn't put back in the court. May not be the prettiest way to win a match, from her or from you, but it sure was gritty and took real determination.
Oh yes I also missed Smashnova! But I think I've never watched Panova play

The belief that man is an irresolute creature pulled this way and that by two forces of equal strength, alternately winning and losing the battle for his soul; the conviction that human life is nothing more than an uncertain struggle between heaven and hell; the faith in two opposed entities, Satan and Christ - all this was bound to engender those internal discords in which the mind, excited by the incessant fighting, stimulated as it were by the constant promises and threats, ends up by giving in and prostitutes itself to whichever of the two combatants has been more obstinate in its pursuit. Life isn't black and white, it's gold.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:48 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

Coetzer, Smashnova and Panova did not lack talent at all what they really lacked was height... All three of them were like 5ft 1 or 2 at most......

and I'm so sick of people saying Coetzer only hit moonballs her game was so much more than that.

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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:49 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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Originally Posted by Sammo View Post
I don't miss Arantxa becoz... I mean she run and that but... she wasn't athletic at all like Coetzer
Are you KIDDING me? ASV was one of the premier athletes of tennis in any era. One of the finest net-players of the past 25 years, had one of the BEST smashes in tennis, and sustained her top 5 ability for more than 10 years, unlike Coetzer who had a very good year-and-a-half and then retrieved her way into the top 20 for a decade.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:51 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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Originally Posted by disco_rage View Post
Coetzer, Smashnova and Panova did not lack talent at all what they really lacked was height... All three of them were like 5ft 1 or 2 at most......

and I'm so sick of people saying Coetzer only hit moonballs her game was so much more than that.
All of them had talent, but the talent wasn't ball-striking. Don't get me wrong, Coetzer could turn a backhand around and stun you, but none of them had significant variety off either wing. They hit very similar balls on every stroke. What won them matches were consistency, placement, speed, and an ability to anticipate. We're talking about a prototype that produced Elena Dementieva, for crying out loud, which CLEARLY indicates there's talent in there. But they didn't have nearly as broad a skill set as a lot of their peers, and I'm not just talking about power.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:55 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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Originally Posted by spencercarlos View Post
Yeah watch Coetzer vs Martinez match at Roland Garros 97 and Usopen 98.. Full of joy in each match

Sorry but do i miss Coetzer´s boring fest moonballing? No!!!

Do i miss the days when Venus used to run around the court and spead her full physical strenght Yes.. mentioned this yesterday rewacthing the Usopen 2000 SF.

Speaking of road runners I miss a player like Arantxa was well. She was a mix of everything!! IMO
I hated two retrievers up against one another, or even two counter-punchers (unless one was Arantxa ), but I could watch a good retriever against a good aggressive player all day. And sometimes I had to, . But you are correct; if there is any single match-up worse than the Kuznetsova-Chakvetadze US Open semifinal, it's seeing two retrieving-minded players waste 3 hours of everyone's life in the 90s.

What always bugged me about Martinez was her willingness to go along with it. She had enough variety that you wanted her to do something more with a shot, but she would rather keep on changing the pace and spin until the opponent blew it. It meant each shot was a mystery, but not a mystery you care about.

Arantxa, in retrospect, was one of the most fun players of the 90s. She didn't have as many supporters as Graf or Seles or Hingis, or even Pierce, but she did a little bit of everything on the court.
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:55 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

I thought Amanda had a pretty good forehand when she wanted to hit it hard?
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 09:59 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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I thought Amanda had a pretty good forehand when she wanted to hit it hard?
She was an agressive counter-puncher when she wanted to be, and she could turn around opponent's BIG shots (she had a lovely stretch against Graf, and though Graf's movement was compromised, it was still a work of art seeing Coetzer time her shot against Graf's massive forehand) better than a lot of players of her genre, but for much of her career she was a passive counter puncher who relied on the occassional forehand to keep the opponent off balance and a tough-to-read backhand. Think Jankovic, but not quite that, even.
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 10:06 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

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Originally Posted by Sammo View Post
I don't miss Arantxa becoz... I mean she run and that but... she wasn't athletic at all like Coetzer
Have you ever seen Arantxa play? To say she wasn't athletic is just so incredibly wrong - her atheticism was SUPERB.


Back to the original question, yes, I do miss it sometimes, it added another something into the fold of the WTA Tour.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 10:16 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

Coetzer is one of my top favourite players to watch. Maybe I've not seen enough of her regular matches and only those against Graf/Davenport/Venus etc. but I thought she was pretty aggressive most of the time, especially for her size. The forehand had alot on it, and not just when she was on the run, and she was a more than adequate volleyer. Her match with Venus at AO '01 is a fun one even if it has a few errors in it.

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She was an agressive counter-puncher when she wanted to be, and she could turn around opponent's BIG shots (she had a lovely stretch against Graf, and though Graf's movement was compromised, it was still a work of art seeing Coetzer time her shot against Graf's massive forehand) better than a lot of players of her genre, but for much of her career she was a passive counter puncher who relied on the occassional forehand to keep the opponent off balance and a tough-to-read backhand. Think Jankovic, but not quite that, even.
Yes. I love watching her against Graf. Same with other passive players like ASV or Sabatini (on clay). I like all the different trajectories these players would throw at her forehand and Graf's would always/mostly be the same (hard/flat) reply. And then the same when they hit to the backhand.
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2010, 10:20 PM
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Re: Am I the only one that misses a good road runner?

Cibulkova is probably the closest thing to a player of Coetzer's ilk, but:

a) She doesn't have the same intricate footwork as Coetzer. Isn't naturally as agile, and isn't as light off the ground. Cibulkova actually takes quite powerful, compact strides, rather than precise, nimble steps.

b) Doesn't have the same kind of ball-control/timing as Coetzer. Finds it harder to redirect pace, and thus has to play defensively 65% of the time, because her ability to put pace on the ball is dubious, especially over a complete match span.
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