Re: Madison Keys...future star
Having seen both her Auckland matches live I thought I would make a comment or two.
Madison has a huge serve. Her first serve max was 194 today and yesterday the same. She had one at 198 today which hit the net. Her first serve is about 180-something on average, the second serve about 160 average, often clearing 170 on the second serve.
She hits the groundies really powerfully as well. Love her bh down the line. Her agility and ability to play longer rallies probably need to improve.
Kumkhum's first serve is more like 170, second serve 140-something. But Kumkhum definitely returned Madison's serve better than Madison returned Kumkhum's serve, for whatever reason. Both players were very very aggressive. Whereas yesterday Cagla Buyukakcay was mostly defending against Madison's power and trying to counter or retrieve, Kumkhum is also a first strike player, two handed off both wings which probably makes first strike necessary. Kumkhum's bh is very strong, probably stronger than her fh and I don't think Madison recognised that. I would have stopped serving all the second serves to her bh after noticing how well she handles that.
Kumkhum's return even of Madison's first serve was very impressive. Having said that I don't think Madison was having a great serving day. The problem with Kumkhum is that if you don't get the serve out of her strike zone it hardly seems to matter how fast it is. Maybe this is a two handed both sides thing. I know Bartoli is also super aggressive on return. Madison needed to focus more on placement. When she finally landed a few well placed swinging wide serves she had an easy service game- those serves were not as quick but they did a better job because they were harder to reach. I barely remember any serves which forced Kumkhum to hit a return of serve with one hand. She was hitting everything with two hands, so I don't think the placement was good enough.
I have a sneaking suspicion that if you give the ball more shape and a bit of loop Kumkhum might tend to lose a little rhythm. Since Madison was hitting everything at one pace she got totally grooved. Well, it's only my opinion. The Thai girl looked really, really good today, but I suspect that some other players will be able to take her out of her comfort zone. These two girls were probably among the most impressive in the qualifying draw, mind you. Yesterday Madison looked like the best player on all the courts.
I also suspect that some other players will return Kumkhum's serve a lot better. It's quite a decent serve but she probably shouldn't have been getting such good damage from it. Anyway, Kumkhum was playing some very good tennis out there, it's not like Madison self-destructed against a total nobody.
Last edited by HowardH; Dec 30th, 2012 at 11:07 AM.