Caro is now 2-3 (40%) in sets 6-4 or closer this year. She won 63% of such sets in 2012, 58% of such sets in 2009, and 70% of such sets from 2010 Copenhagen through 2011 Wimbledon.
This whole situation is very hard to fully understand.
But the part of this drop off that is clear is that in close matches, early in tournaments, she has a lot of trouble closing out sets and matches and advancing in draws.
She used to be excellent at that. When she played Cibulkova at Wimbledon 2011, Caro was holding 9 titles, and was in 15 semis in her last 19 tournaments. Thats starting with Rogers Cup in summer of 2010 until Wimbledon 2011, almost a full year, and only 2011 Sydney, 2011 Miami, 2011 Madrid and 2011 French Open. Those were the only times she wasnt in at least the semis.
And she had won 5 Tier I's in a row. YEC final, 2 slam semis.
Starting with that Cibulkova match, and maybe we should start with the Hantuchova loss in Paris, but a semifinal appearance is rare, and no Tier I final appearance since IW 2011.
Losing in 3 sets to Pervak, then twice in a row to Sveta, is a continuation of a long term trend that is starting to define her post #1 career.
Still a few more hardcourt tournaments before clay & grass & US summer, where she really struggled last year
I think its important for Caroline to get some results before clay season, or its going to be a tough year for her