Baltic Players - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 15th, 2003, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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Baltic Players

I am wondering to myself why there are not more players from the Baltic countries in rankings.....I am a fan of them all, but only really Ani and Kanepi (Estonia) and Miseviciute and Stanciute (Lithuania) are making any impact on the tour. Why are the Baltic slower than say....Belarus, Ukraine, even Uzbekistan?

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Born : April 23rd 1978
Age: 28
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Height: 5' 5" (1.65m)
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ITF Titles: Augusta (2005), Gifu (2005), Fukuoka (2003), Port Pirie (2001), Jakarta (1996).
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Finalist (1): 2003 - Tashkent.
Semifinalist (1): 2003 - Bali.
Quarterfinalist (6): 2004 - Birmingham; 2003 - Memphis, Pattaya City; 2002 - Bali; 2001 - Tokyo [Japan Open]; 2000 - Shanghai.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 15th, 2003, 10:43 PM
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Yea, I would just love to root for members of my ancestor's country (Lithuania.)

I just hope Aurelija and Lina can get up those rankings, and start making it into slams and such.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 15th, 2003, 11:32 PM
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I'm not suire about the other countries, but in Lithuania, it's the lack of tennis traditions, funding (both private and public), training facilities and adequate coordination/promotion of the sport.

The situation is improving though, so there's hope things will only get better
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 15th, 2003, 11:42 PM
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Kaia Kanepi (EST) was showing decent prospects as a junior, but spent basically all of '02 on the shelf injured (and came back ova-weight on top of rusty). Since then I only see her name in Challengers. Ironically, an almost exact parallel (not sure re. the fitness part) between that BalTIC player and a BalKAN prospect about the same age, Matea Mezak (CRO), who's yet to emerge from obscurity after missing last year.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 12:13 AM
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"Decent prospects as a junior" = RG champion at 16 and World #1 ranking

"I only see her name in Challengers" = two titles in the last five months, propelling her to a career-high ranking...it's not like she ever played the Tour to begin with before the injuries.

She's only 18!

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 12:16 AM
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Kaia is going to be Top 100 in the next 2 years.

Kaia
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 12:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hurley
"Decent prospects as a junior" = RG champion at 16 and World #1 ranking

"I only see her name in Challengers" = two titles in the last five months, propelling her to a career-high ranking...it's not like she ever played the Tour to begin with before the injuries.

She's only 18!
Sorry I forgot about RG, but Barbora Strycova may turn out 2B a former junior #1 and Slam winner who disappoints as a pro (without the long layoff in her case). The pro game "isn't exactly" the same, which is why many Heisman Trophy winners as the best US college football player in a year fail in the NFL. Like tennis, same field, same rules (couple of minor differences in football) it's just hard to explain. But I'll agree Kaia showed "Good prospects as a junior". (BTW, what level Challengers did she win)?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 12:50 AM
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Two 25K this year.

I'm just saying it's okay she is "still" playing Challengers because before she got to make the logical step to the Tour, she got injured.

Without that injury she would be playing Tour regularly, no question, and as long as she stays healthy she will get there by this time next year.

I'm not saying she's ever gonna be Top Ten or even Top Fifty, but she lost the good part of a year right when she was gonna try to make her move, so don't knock her just cos she's in Challengers. She's doing okay.

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 03:00 AM
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I have been away from Estonia too long to comment about the current issues concerning tennis popularity/conditions/funding etc there, but I'm quite sure they are similar to the ones MrsTheBoiledEgg listed for Lithuania. Vutt could probably shed more light into it.

As for Kaia, Hurley summed it up pretty nicely. It's not easy to make it from juniors into the pros, and it's even harder when being hampered by injuries during that time. If Kaia stayes healthy, I'm certain she will make it into top 100 sometimes next year.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 04:09 AM
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As for Lithuanian players, you forgot about Edita Liachoviciute.

Irina Kuzmina plays for Latvia, right?
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 07:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyRoger
Sorry I forgot about RG, but Barbora Strycova may turn out 2B a former junior #1 and Slam winner who disappoints as a pro (without the long layoff in her case)...
In Barbora's defence, she's had tons of injuries (Amelie-style, each one different to the last), and was out 5 months from the Aussie Open this year. I still think she's gonna be pretty successful, but needs a whole uninjured season to really find herself.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsTheBoiledEgg
I'm not suire about the other countries, but in Lithuania, it's the lack of tennis traditions, funding (both private and public), training facilities and adequate coordination/promotion of the sport.

The situation is improving though, so there's hope things will only get better
Well that’s true about Estonia to. Infrastructure sucked big time and therefore players base was really tiny. Russian soviet economy left to us some 10 years ago with couple of wooden indoor courts. Estonia is northern part in Europe so outdoor season is very short. Indoor tennis is very expensive to our still developing country. People can’t just afford it. Another factor is that our population is just little over 1 million. If we compare it to Ukraine or Russia. (btw. Not that matters much, but our best Maret Ani is ranked higher than UK’s best women )

But things are turning slowly indeed. They just built relatively huge tennis centre. Most important is today that all courts are crowded with youth. That’s good to see.

Even I like Maret more I think that Kaia will have brighter future. She plays modern power tennis and if she stays healthy then we well see her in top 100 for sure.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 03:15 PM
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I'd really like to see someone from Baltic countries in top 100. I hope Aurelija makes it!
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 03:58 PM
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I hope to see more players from Baltic countries do well too. I think Kaia will make the top 100 if she stays uninjured, but i dont know about anyone else.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Oct 16th, 2003, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted of Teds Tennis
As for Lithuanian players, you forgot about Edita Liachoviciute.
But Edita is pretty much a thing of the past. Both Lina and Aurelija are a decade younger and each of them already have one 25K title [unlike Edita]
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