Pavs played smart. She was hitting drop shots, moving Petra around and I thought she served very well – infrequent DFs. She wasn't rushing it. And if you let it, that kind of thing would really get inside your head and mess up your mentality.
But you're right. She could have won it...and we all know she has the talent necessary to do so. But she didn't. It's something mental. (Fitness is one of the most important things...but you can be fit as hell and still be a mess. Exhibit A: Sam Stosur.
Yeah, Pav's won some points off drop shots, but they weren't many. And to be quite honest, some of them appeared to be bail out shots when Petra's groundies were really rolling.
As far as her serving: Pav's wasn't serving very hard. But she was serving very high risky by going for the lines on practically every serve. This is the reason why she ended up with so many second serves. And with all due respect, if Petra's needs to win a series of big points off Pav's serve (when all things are well) I expect her to. Obviously that didn't happen here, including when Petra needed to serve into a 3rd set. That's abominable. You noticed, after Pav's fast start, when Petra started rolling, she lost her confidence in her serving (and probably the game). It's almost like she was a bystander. But Petra gave her life, every time she got broke back after a key break, missed a break opportunity, or got broken herself.
Mentally, she let so many chances in that game go by, you gotta wonder.
As I've been saying all night, 'since she didn't make any major changes in her team that we're aware of, I'm going to reserve judgement and not look forward to the season'. I'll take it for what it is, as it produces itself.
Nonetheless, because of this, I'll cut her some slack, cause it's a new season till Sydney and the Aussie Open. But it's certainly not a positive start, especially when you consider how she lost, and the fact that Maria had dropped out of her half.
Already she starts the season with lost momentum.