WTA and GMT
The parallels are frightening.
Poiree and Yana
Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters
The Belgians may not be sisters but they get grouped together enough to be considered the same of kin. Former GMT #1 Poiree’s artistic, sometimes messy graphics can be compared to Justine Henin’s flawless one handed backhand. Crisp, classic and sometimes a little bit erratic. But Poiree knows how to keep her graphics just as sublimely as Justine knows how to hit a down the line on hander, and that’s why you’ll find the two have definite similarities in their careers on the respective tours.
Yana on the other hand is slightly less successful than her big sister and is sometimes overshadowed by the results and H2H of the formerly dominant Poiree. Yana, just like Kim, is a fighter and when on her game she strikes with efficiency and beauty, stealing the votes of the GMT audience.
Reetard and Renalicious
Serena and Venus Williams
This was a difficult decision to make. At her best, Serena Williams is nigh unbeatable and floats through tournament draws with a mixture of raw power and ease. Brad has shown his ability and talent to mirror his favourite WTA player by doing just that. His dominating performance over the American season in 2009 was scary. It seemed nobody could beat him as he demolished InsideOut. In the USOS final and fought tooth and nail to overcome Ksenia in the US Open decider. He was riding a 26 set win streak as he cruised to the final of the Asian Hardcourt Season before defaulting the title to his competitive “sister” Venus (Fred). Renalicious has artistic, feminine and striking graphics. His Wimbledon title run was his first glimpse of success in GMT, as he dashed the competition to steal the coveted title as an underdog. Fred’s best surface is grass, just like his WTA counterpart Venus, and he always does well when he has a strong emotional connection to the tournament. Nothing was going to stop him from claiming Wimbledon and his love of the Asian hardcourt season saw him win 3 consecutive, thrilling, three setters to reach the title. It is also noteworthy that his experience took him to the Year End Championships final in Doha.
Nobody can deny that when she is on her game, Niya has the talent to dominate the tour. She out-cropped, out-coloured and out-played the competition to claim her first GMT Grand Slam at Wimbledon 2008, and conjured up an equally dominant performance at the Australian Open 2010, taking out the top seed on the way. Her inspiring run to the US Open Final and her strong performance against Brad there is nothing to bat your eyelid over, either. Ksenia’s technically sound graphics match all of her counter part’s talent, stroke for stroke, blasting away the competition.
Louisa. Stadia. Enia.
Caroline Wozniacki, Elena Dementieva, Jelena Jankovic.
Louisa made a swift run to her first Grand Slam final at the Australian Open 2010, taking advantage of her draw to land herself against the more experienced Ksenia. Lou’s steady, arty graphics vaulted her past the opposition, and even had 3 Championship Points in the final. She is a young gun and she definitely one to look out for in the future. Stadia has been a fixture for promoting GMT just like his WTA twin. Elena Dementieva has always been recognized for her lovely off-court demeanour and ability to promote the game. Josh is no different, having recently been elected to the board and taking a very responsible outlook to managing the game. Elena’s powerful tennis landed her the Olympic gold Medal. Stadia’s powerful graphics landed him with Roland Garros and YEC Doha titles.
Enia is a relative new comer to the game, hovering around the GMT Top 25. The thing that drew the Jankovic comparison to Enia was her clean and graceful graphic techniques, that bear resemblance to Jelena’s fluid movement around the court. Everybody spotted Jankovic when she was an up and comer on the tour in 2006, and I think the same can be said for Enia. Watch out for this one.
Zvonarevarulz. Acorabaj. Sean.
Vera Zvonareva, Yanina Wickmayer, Dinara Safina
The thing you have to recognize about zvonarevarulz’s graphics are that they can be a little hit/miss. But for the majority of the time, her creative brush work and bright colours carry her to a classic “counter punching” game that dazzles the voters (See YEC Bali 2009). Her first title came after a thrilling five set face-off with the talented Oneandonly, who was also in her first final. Her colourful graphics match the volatile personality of Zvonareva, who just happens to be her favourite player.
Acinolbaj was a hard choice to pick. On one hand, she is a talented up and comer with a big hitting game like Victoria Azarenka. But on the other hand, her graphics match the artistic flair of the two “Belgian” sisters, Poiree and Yana. Coincidentilly, the up and coming, big hitting Yanina Wickmayer also reached a grand slam QF in 2009, like Acino’s run to the Australian Open quarters in 2010.
Sean. and Dinara Safina have a lot in common. At their best they both have an accurate style and reside at the top of the game. But at the moment, they’ve both been a bit derailed with injuries and taken time off from their games for their own personal sake.
Heart, ArturoAce. and InsideOut.
Svetlana Kuznetsova, Marion Bartoli, Ana Ivanovic
Heart and Svetlana are a parallel fixture on their respective tour’s and have been a threat at any tournament for a long time now. Sveta’s red hot forehand and heart’s red hot colouring are stable competition for anyone who has to take them on. Heartnetsova’s peak is rare, but awesome when she hits it. Arturtoli reached their first and only grand slam final at Wimbledon, losing to Venus Williams as an underdog. Arthur’s unconventional cropping bears a very similar resemblance to unconventional Marion’s double handed FH and funky serve. His success on grass was no fluke however, and proved to be the first of many successful tournament campaigns.
InsideOut. and Ana Ivanovic have been in a rut as of late. Ana, when on, has beautiful and powerful shots. InsideOut. when on, has the ability to fight his way past just about anyone (See US Open Series 2009 final run, sans the final obviously). Ben’s sleek graphics are always lovely to see what he’ll come up with next, and his avatars are some of the best. But after an odd loss to Qualifier Caralenko in the Australian Open Quarterfinals, the future is a bit of a question mark.
So, it was no easy task to write these comparisons and I’m sure I’ll get a few angry responses from some people :P but it was a lot of fun and I hope everyone takes it as light humour and accepts everything as the compliment it was intended to be, as everyone is very talented and everybody has their own niche.
by Cara and Fred