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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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Nobody's Perfect..

Henin-Hardenne Ends Serena's Unbeaten Start at 21

By PETE IACOBELLI
.c The Associated Press

CHARLESTON, S.C. (April 13) -- Serena Williams is capable of losing, and everyone on the WTA Tour can thank Justine Henin-Hardenne for reminding them.

The Belgian emphatically ended Williams' 21-0 start to the season by beating the world's No. 1 player 6-3, 6-4 Sunday for the Family Circle Cup title.

"This doesn't change anything about the great champion that Serena is. But it means that today we could see that we can do these things against her, and she can be frustrated, too,'' Henin-Hardenne said. "I think it's good for the other players that we can see that.''

Williams' last loss came against another Belgian, Kim Clijsters, in the 2002 season-ending Tour Championship in November.

She issued a bit of a warning to future opponents.

"Sometimes you need to lose,'' Williams said. "I'm so motivated now. I can just feel it coming on again. So you've got to watch out.''

What was perhaps most stunning about Sunday's final at the clay-court event was the way the momentum turned after Williams won the first three games.

All of a sudden, her fourth-ranked opponent won six games in a row, taking 23 of the last 26 points in the first set. With Henin-Hardenne's smooth strokes right on target, she also overcame a 2-0 deficit in the second set.

"My whole game was like 9,000 notches down,'' Williams said. "I didn't serve well, I didn't return well, I didn't hit well. You know, it's just one of those days.''

The Belgian entered the match with a 1-4 career mark against Williams, who won a so-called Serena Slam by winning the last four major tournaments in a row: the French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open last year, and the Australian Open in January.

That streak led to talk on tour that Williams might be able to get through 2003 without a loss. But she repeatedly has said a perfect season was a lofty goal she never expected to reach.

"I think you guys dwelled on it more than I did,'' she said Sunday.

Williams showed some shakiness in the semifinals against former No. 1 Lindsay Davenport, blowing a big second-set lead.

Henin-Hardenne made Williams pay for errors, running down shots into the corners and forcing the American to go deeper into points than she wanted.

"I was a little bit nervous at the first,'' said Henin-Hardenne, who lost to Williams' older sister Venus in the 2001 Wimbledon final. "But then she began to make some mistakes.''

It's Henin-Hardenne's second title of the year and improved her match record to 21-4. She won a tournament on hard courts at Dubai in February, beating Jennifer Capriati and Monica Seles in consecutive matches.

On Sunday, Williams dropped her racket in frustration after putting a forehand into the net at 3-3 in the second set. She hit long two points later to fall behind 4-3. In the final game, Williams hit a lazy backhand approach into the net to end it.

The clay might have dulled her serve a bit, giving the swift Henin-Hardenne more of a chance to get to balls. Williams had nine aces against Davenport, zero Sunday.

Henin-Hardenne's plan was to keep Williams moving, changing pace on her shots the way a baseball pitcher changes speeds.

It worked perfectly.

"You ask yourself, 'Why did she have all these mistakes?''' Henin-Hardenne said. "Maybe it's because all these balls were coming back at her, she was running all over the court and she didn't have any solutions to her problems.''

TRUE FANS REPRESENT

Venus & Serena: "You are my everything."

- Official Duke of the Royal Court -
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 09:58 PM
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Justine deserved the victory today. Congrats Juju and Carlos!

All the best to Justine Henin-Hardenne!!


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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Man
"You ask yourself, 'Why did she have all these mistakes?''' Henin-Hardenne said. "Maybe it's because all these balls were coming back at her, she was running all over the court and she didn't have any solutions to her problems.''
lol, very true

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:01 PM
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Nobody's Perfect..
????

Erm, yes they damn well are. I'm living proof. (PamProof)

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:02 PM
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"My whole game was like 9,000 notches down,'' Williams said. "I didn't serve well, I didn't return well, I didn't hit well. You know, it's just one of those days.''

Well Serena, then how come you lead 3-0 in the first set? Unless playing 9,000 notches down is still good enough to crush a top5 player 3-0? You were playing good, but then you started doing mistakes because Henin picked up her game and forced you into error.

"You ask yourself, 'Why did she have all these mistakes?''' Henin-Hardenne said. "Maybe it's because all these balls were coming back at her, she was running all over the court and she didn't have any solutions to her problems.''

There, she said it even better.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela Shriver
????

Erm, yes they damn well are. I'm living proof. (PamProof)
You have the perfect serve...especially in tight situations.

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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:04 PM
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yeahh i thought so ! nobody is invisible on this earth ..but i've to say Justine were lucky to be playng in a bad day of Serena ..but she deserved it ..it's not like she was hanging out there to earn the victory .She made Serena run a lot and still managed to hit some of her normal winners ...yeahh congratulation to Justin's fans ,too .I know how happy you guy are ..

HINGIS...........FOREVER......
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by selesrules
"My whole game was like 9,000 notches down,'' Williams said. "I didn't serve well, I didn't return well, I didn't hit well. You know, it's just one of those days.''

Well Serena, then how come you lead 3-0 in the first set? Unless playing 9,000 notches down is still good enough to crush a top5 player 3-0? You were playing good, but then you started doing mistakes because Henin picked up her game and forced you into error.

"You ask yourself, 'Why did she have all these mistakes?''' Henin-Hardenne said. "Maybe it's because all these balls were coming back at her, she was running all over the court and she didn't have any solutions to her problems.''

There, she said it even better.
Maybe the "9,000 notches" is a figure of speech. She played well but then her game started to fall apart. Sure Justine forced some errors...but many unforced errors came off of Serena's racket as well.

A full-hearted congrats to Justine though as she was able to get the win where Serena's 21 previous opponents couldn't no matter how close they were to winning.

Justine

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:09 PM
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oh please edit that.....

But I guess no one is invisible either.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adison-hingis
yeahh i thought so ! nobody is invisible on this earth ..but i've to say Justine were lucky to be playng in a bad day of Serena ..but she deserved it ..it's not like she was hanging out there to earn the victory .She made Serena run a lot and still managed to hit some of her normal winners ...yeahh congratulation to Justin's fans ,too .I know how happy you guy are ..
Now invisiblity would create some interesting tennis!
I'd hope that nobody was thinking Serena is invisible on court..after all she's quite a prominent figure.

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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:10 PM
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Actually "9000 notches" is not a "figure of speech," it is an "exageration." Serena exagerates a lot.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:11 PM
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Yes 1jackson2001, I have the PerfectPingPongPam serve....

~Read Pam's Perspective: The Official PamProse Blog~
~I Loves My George but not that skanky Lazenby granddad~This game has gone to DOOSE~~I won the Olympic Gold~~The BEST commentator~~My vowels rulez the air~~ Ping-Pong Pam~~Style Guru: The Pamfro, Voted Hairstyle of the Yr 1983~~Click here to see my fantastic web site created by my adoring 'fan'
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela Shriver
Yes 1jackson2001, I have the PerfectPingPongPam serve....
And you know it.

Tennis is Life.

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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:38 PM
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I think it's weird for Serena to try and discredit Justine's win over her by saying her game was down 9,000 notches. Serena was up 3-0 but couldn't consolidate. Why? Did her game suddenly drop 9,000 notches or was it because Justine was just getting a lot of balls back that Serena expected not to be returned or is it because Justine was just doing a good job forcing the errors and Serena couldn't really hang on?

I think Serena didn't play as poorly as people want to say she did. I feel that after watching the game, Serena just couldn't get back into her comfort zone to defeat Justine because Justine was doing a good job a keeping Serena at bay. After having watched the match I will concede that both players did not play nearly as well as they could. Serena didn't play well and neither did Justine. Both are capable of playing better than they did. Justine just did a better job in making sure her opponent doesn't get better and force the error.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2003, 10:42 PM
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Oh, sorry, I saw the title of this thread and thought it was about me.

Jennifer Capriati is my idol
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