Yes ys, I've seen Petrova play. And she has a good first serve, too. But I saw Bovina serve some powerful and precise first serves in a recent match against Davenport. I'm sure no Russian woman has ever hit serves like that before. And Bovina's backhand is lethal. She still has the potential to be a top 10 player. Will she ever be as good as Davenport? Nyet! But she has the potential to be a very good tennis player.
And ys, when you made your counter point about how female Russian figure skaters have improved since 1991, I forgot to counter your counter. So I'll do so now. Sure, Russian women female skaters have come a long way since 1991. But they still fold when the pressure is on. Maria Butyrskaya came close to winning a bronze medal in 2 Olympics. But the pressure got to her and she came up short both times. And all Irina Slutskaya had to do was skate a solid long program in Salt Lake City and the gold medal was hers. But she couldn't handle the pressure and skated a mediorce routine. And it cost her the gold. Russian women have come a long way in figure skating since 1991. But there is still room to improve on the ice and in the mind.
Happiness is like a cat. If you try to coax it or call it, it will avoid you. It will never come. But if you pay no attention to it and go about your business, you'll find it rubbing up against your legs and jumping into your lap. - William Bennett