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View Full Version : Which female players AREN'T mentally weak?


jenglisbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 06:24 PM
Dementieva was up 5-3 in that 1st set and lost 4 games in a row after that. Her serve noticably dips when she's ahead. Most of the Russian players are mentally weak, actually. Kuznetsova has choked in a number of matches, as has Myskina (most notably in the Olympics against Henin-Hardenne).

Justine has developed a reputation as a mentally strong player, but I don't buy it. She's stronger mentally than most of the women, but she still often loses leads and gets tight when she's trying to close out sets and matches. She's just better at hanging on than other players.

Kim Clijsters and Amelie Mauresmo are notorious for getting tight in big matches, and Lindsay Davenport hasn't exactly been a model of mental fortitude (she was a set up in each of her last 3 losses in majors).

Who does that leave? Serena Williams is certainly the toughest mentally in terms of female players. Sharapova is up there, too. Even though she choked away the Australian Open SF earlier this year, it's the only match I can think of that she really got tight in. She held up well in the Wimbledon final, as well as at the year-end tournament.

tennisIlove09
Apr 17th, 2005, 06:33 PM
Serena and Maria are the strongest. Justine is a fighter too.

jenglisbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 06:52 PM
Justine's a figher, but that's different from being a great closer. Clijsters and Dementieva are grat fighters, too, but they choke.

When Justine beat Serena at Roland Garros, didn't she choke the first time she served for the match and had to serve it out again? And, really, she let Kim off the hook in their U.S. Open final but then Kim choked and went away.

This week Justine got tight when trying to serve out the set against Golovin, and today she was up 4-1 (two breaks) against Dementieva and is now at 4-4.

Maria Croft
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:14 PM
for the last time, Maria did not choke in the AO, Serena fought hard for those points and won !! No choking of any kind !!

La Reine
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:15 PM
Mentally weak means not getting behind?

I thought it meant maintaining a good mental attitude throughout the match whether ahead or behind.

Some players don't have that eg. Davenport.

Some do eg. Sharapova.

RenaSlam.
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:17 PM
Serena and Sharapova are the strongest, mentally. There's a difference between a great fighter (Justine) and mentally strong (Serena and Sharapova).

DEETHELICK
Apr 17th, 2005, 08:44 PM
Elena D outside of a final seems to be pretty strong.

Lemonskin.
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:01 PM
Maria and Serena

tennisIlove09
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:08 PM
Well Chris Evert was the queen of mentally tough.

I find it weird how some players can have it, and then lose it. Venus was SO mentally strong in 2000, and especially 2001...NOTHING fazed her, ever. And it seemed to go away.

LeRoy.
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:14 PM
Monica Seles is her hey days was just scary when it comes to mental toughness. :)

Now i'd say Maria and Serena are mentally strong. Justine was a known choker but is slowly getting stronger in that department. :)

auntie janie
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:16 PM
Justine is very mentally tough. Yes, she gets nervous and blows leads. But her strength lies in her ability to bounce back from such moments and WIN THE MATCH. I am always impressed at the way she puts her atrocious games behind her and forges ahead again like nothing happened.

Being mentally strong doesn't necessarily mean that you are immune to nerves, only that you know how to recover from them. And that's what Justine has been able to do in her career, as anyone who is objective can recognize (and jenglisbe, I know you from way back on the SI board, and I think you'd have to admit you are definitely NOT objective when it comes to Justine ;)). The most amazing part about it for me is that Justine famously used to not possess this skill -- she had some world-class chokes earlier in her career which resulted in some dreadful losses. But then she got over it! That astonished me -- where did it come from, her newfound ability to leave her bloopers behind and simply move on in the match as if everything was fine? It's so great to see a player slowly develop this mental strength and thereby turn a good career into a fabulous one. :hearts:

Others with marked mental strength -- though I contend that NOBODY has it ALL the time: Sania Mirza :) Serena :) Maria :) Ana Ivanovic :) And Elena D. (Really! She's had so many amazing comebacks! And is #5 in the world despite her problematic serve.) :)

martirogi
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:17 PM
maria is best then serena. myskina is just horrible :sad:

jenglisbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:19 PM
for the last time, Maria did not choke in the AO, Serena fought hard for those points and won !! No choking of any kind !!
Watch the match again. When Maria served for the match, she might have gotten one 1st serve in. That's called getting tight. She also played not to lose as opposed to staying aggressive and playing to win. Even she admitted that.

jenglisbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:21 PM
maria is best then serena. myskina is just horrible :sad:
Um, Serena held it together in their Australian Open match. Why do you say Maria is the best?

What's interesting about Myskina is that she was literally the only player to hold it together at all during Roland Garros last year (Kuznetsova should have won their 4th round match, and then Venus, Jennifer, and Elena all folded), but it's about the only tournament she's ever held it together at.

Lady
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:21 PM
Everyone has nerves at the important points.Everyone!
It's how you deal with them shows your mental strength!

auntie janie
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:40 PM
Everyone has nerves at the important points.Everyone!
It's how you deal with them shows your mental strength!

Once again, someone manages to say in a few words what took me paragraphs to say! :worship:

Tati & Dani
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:44 PM
When the Williams sisters or Sharapova are leading in a match, it's very difficult to beat them, i think there are mentally the strongest. And Henin since two years ago to.

Tati & Dani
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:45 PM
Justine's a figher, but that's different from being a great closer. Clijsters and Dementieva are grat fighters, too, but they choke.

When Justine beat Serena at Roland Garros, didn't she choke the first time she served for the match and had to serve it out again? And, really, she let Kim off the hook in their U.S. Open final but then Kim choked and went away.

This week Justine got tight when trying to serve out the set against Golovin, and today she was up 4-1 (two breaks) against Dementieva and is now at 4-4.

clijsters is not a choker !!!

crazillo
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:15 PM
Not to forget Chokeva. :wavey: :(

I think Kuznetsova has strong nerves!

shap_half
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:30 PM
When the Williams sisters or Sharapova are leading in a match, it's very difficult to beat them, i think there are mentally the strongest. And Henin since two years ago to.

I don't think Venus is that mentally strong anymore.

And since when did wasting 3 MPs at a GS SF become to mean mental strength.

And for those who say that Justine is not mentally strong, I say pfffft to you!
It is very rarely that Justine will lose a match after holding match points. The only 1 I can remember off the top of my head was the match between Elena and Justine at the SF of AI 2 years ago (but AI is curse for her so I don't care).

Still, Justine is a mentally strong player. She will fight because she always believes that she can win even if she's facing 34389038403 match points against her. She won that second set in Miami against Sharapova whilst saving 3 MPs. If she had a little more gas in her tank, Sharapova wouldn't have gotten to the final.

Fingon
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:43 PM
Mentally strong doesn't equal fighting, it also doesn't equal winning when you are playing well or when you have an advantage. It's the other way around, players that blow up leads are normally mentally weak.

It's how they behave in difficult situations. Maria winning Wimbledon was a sign of mental toughness, she hadn't been there, she was only 17 :lol: , centre court, Wimbledon, you get the picture.

Another sign for me is players able to win when they are not playing well, they just hang there and wait for their chances, Justine has that, Venus used to.

I really don't see how Serena is mentally strong, with few exceptions, she normally wins by overwhelming her opponents, she normally wins playing well, that's called playing well, not being mentally strong. She has had a few comeback wins, like against Kim at the Australian Open, but how much was it Kim choking? On the other hand, Serena has blown up leads before.

A perfect example of mental toughness was Steffi Graf, a couple of times at Wimbledon, she was being clearly overplayed, but she stayed there and eventually came on top.

Another sign of mental tougheness, is when players have a bad, discouraging loss and then come back the next tournament and do really well. Example, Justine in 2001, loses the FO semis blowing up a lead, comes back to win Rosmalen and gets to the Wimbledon final.

Masha loses 6-0 6-0 and then kills her opponent in the next match.

winning when you are playing well is the easy part, winning when you are not is different, overcoming adversity is a sign of mental toughness, nobody other than Monica Seles has to come on top, being away 2 years after being stabbed and coming back to win a tier 1 and reach a GS final, that's toughness.

La Reine
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:51 PM
Fingon...I disagree with your analysis. Anybody who doesn't think Serena is mentally tough needs to think the same for Sharapova too.

How old was Serena when she won the US Open?

jenglisbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:59 PM
clijsters is not a choker !!!
Huh? How do you explain her being 0-4 in major finals, with 3 of those losses being to a player she is 9-4 against otherwise?

Fingon
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:06 PM
Fingon...I disagree with your analysis. Anybody who doesn't think Serena is mentally tough needs to think the same for Sharapova too.

How old was Serena when she won the US Open?

she was mentally tough then, but she hasn't been like that in a consistent way.

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:06 PM
Mentally strong doesn't equal fighting, it also doesn't equal winning when you are playing well or when you have an advantage. It's the other way around, players that blow up leads are normally mentally weak.

It's how they behave in difficult situations. Maria winning Wimbledon was a sign of mental toughness, she hadn't been there, she was only 17 :lol: , centre court, Wimbledon, you get the picture.

Another sign for me is players able to win when they are not playing well, they just hang there and wait for their chances, Justine has that, Venus used to.

I really don't see how Serena is mentally strong, with few exceptions, she normally wins by overwhelming her opponents, she normally wins playing well, that's called playing well, not being mentally strong. She has had a few comeback wins, like against Kim at the Australian Open, but how much was it Kim choking? On the other hand, Serena has blown up leads before.

A perfect example of mental toughness was Steffi Graf, a couple of times at Wimbledon, she was being clearly overplayed, but she stayed there and eventually came on top.

Another sign of mental tougheness, is when players have a bad, discouraging loss and then come back the next tournament and do really well. Example, Justine in 2001, loses the FO semis blowing up a lead, comes back to win Rosmalen and gets to the Wimbledon final.

Masha loses 6-0 6-0 and then kills her opponent in the next match.

winning when you are playing well is the easy part, winning when you are not is different, overcoming adversity is a sign of mental toughness, nobody other than Monica Seles has to come on top, being away 2 years after being stabbed and coming back to win a tier 1 and reach a GS final, that's toughness.

Serena not mentally tough??? Are you on crack. I'm sorry but Sharapova DID NOT choke that AO SF, Serena WON it. She out played and out smarted Sharapova in that third set down 4-5 and came back to win it. Why can't people give credit to her for that?

Fingon
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:14 PM
Serena not mentally tough??? Are you on crack. I'm sorry but Sharapova DID NOT choke that AO SF, Serena WON it. She out played and out smarted Sharapova in that third set down 4-5 and came back to win it. Why can't people give credit to her for that?

how is that not giving credit? she is a great player, she is a fighter, and Sharapova did get tight, that's not a sign of mental toughness, and even if it is, it doesn't show a pattern. I could come with tens of examples when she wasn't mentally tough.

you have to praise every single aspect of her game, personality or otherwise you get all the moaning :rolleyes: hello? I said she is a great player, I said she is a fighther, I said she fucking kill her opponents, so now I have to say she is the most wonderful person to ever grace the planet, get some touch with reality will you?

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:20 PM
how is that not giving credit? she is a great player, she is a fighter, and Sharapova did get tight, that's not a sign of mental toughness, and even if it is, it doesn't show a pattern. I could come with tens of examples when she wasn't mentally tough.

you have to praise every single aspect of her game, personality or otherwise you get all the moaning :rolleyes: hello? I said she is a great player, I said she is a fighther, I said she fucking kill her opponents, so now I have to say she is the most wonderful person to ever grace the planet, get some touch with reality will you?

How exactly did Sharapova get tight in the 4-5 game?? She was moving the ball all around the court, and made a HUGE error tyring to run Serena around the court. And the 2 other mps were winners by Serena. I have the match on tape, and have watched it several times analyzing...and I can say first hand you don't really know what you're talking about.

petey_pan
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:25 PM
Molik's pretty damn good these days - and she used to be REALLY bad -

2002 Grand Slams

Aus - lost first round to Panova having 2 mps loses 10-8 in the third.

French - Loses to Loit in rnd one - 7-5 in the third after leading 5-2.

Wimbledon - loses 8-6 in the third round to Pierce after having numerous chances.

Yikes.... glad those days are over

Cris Senior
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:29 PM
Serena not mentally tough??? Are you on crack. I'm sorry but Sharapova DID NOT choke that AO SF, Serena WON it. She out played and out smarted Sharapova in that third set down 4-5 and came back to win it. Why can't people give credit to her for that?

It depends on how you define "mentally tough".I think Fingon definition is perfect and his distinction from soneone winning by excellence is very pertinent here.
For example, Serena reached a plateau of excellence (2002-o3) during which she didn't have a problem beating opponents who hand't caught up with her game yet,But she did had severe chocking problems before 2002 e.g. during a semifinal at Wimbledon in 2001 against Capriati,she had a severe case complete with a diahrrea break and she ended up losing the match.That was pretty obvious.
Cris Senior

faste5683
Apr 17th, 2005, 11:59 PM
Mentally strong doesn't equal fighting, it also doesn't equal winning when you are playing well or when you have an advantage. It's the other way around, players that blow up leads are normally mentally weak.

It's how they behave in difficult situations. Maria winning Wimbledon was a sign of mental toughness, she hadn't been there, she was only 17 :lol: , centre court, Wimbledon, you get the picture.

Another sign for me is players able to win when they are not playing well, they just hang there and wait for their chances, Justine has that, Venus used to.

I really don't see how Serena is mentally strong, with few exceptions, she normally wins by overwhelming her opponents, she normally wins playing well, that's called playing well, not being mentally strong. She has had a few comeback wins, like against Kim at the Australian Open, but how much was it Kim choking? On the other hand, Serena has blown up leads before.

A perfect example of mental toughness was Steffi Graf, a couple of times at Wimbledon, she was being clearly overplayed, but she stayed there and eventually came on top.

Another sign of mental tougheness, is when players have a bad, discouraging loss and then come back the next tournament and do really well. Example, Justine in 2001, loses the FO semis blowing up a lead, comes back to win Rosmalen and gets to the Wimbledon final.

Masha loses 6-0 6-0 and then kills her opponent in the next match.

winning when you are playing well is the easy part, winning when you are not is different, overcoming adversity is a sign of mental toughness, nobody other than Monica Seles has to come on top, being away 2 years after being stabbed and coming back to win a tier 1 and reach a GS final, that's toughness.

:bounce:

A gleam of sanity in a rapidly deteriorating thread.

:wavey:

faste5683
Apr 18th, 2005, 12:03 AM
Justine has developed a reputation as a mentally strong player, but I don't buy it. She's stronger mentally than most of the women, but she still often loses leads and gets tight when she's trying to close out sets and matches. She's just better at hanging on than other players.


:haha: "She's just better at hanging on than other players."

If that's not a description for mentally tough, I sure as hell don't know what is...

:wavey:

azinna
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:21 AM
I understand the subtlety of Fingon's argument. A player whose A game is far superior to the field's, and who has a tendency to show up with that A (or A-) game, may not need mental toughness to win his/her matches. Good point.

But one has to be really careful with that line of reasoning. Because it assumes that the shift to a higher gear in a 2nd or 3rd set (a la Sampras or Graf or a younger Seles) against a top-notch opponent doesn't require mental fortitude. Dangerous assumption.

Secondly, we tend to look back on a player's period of domination with rose-tinted shades. Serena, like Graf, like Venus in 2000-01, like Sampras, like Federer now, won matches when she wasn't playing her best. One doesn't need to go to Aussie 2005 for the obvious example. Most of that 1st half of 2003 was a mess. On a regular basis, Rena came to play with only her B game in her bag. The rest was gut and belief.

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:27 AM
It depends on how you define "mentally tough".I think Fingon definition is perfect and his distinction from soneone winning by excellence is very pertinent here.
For example, Serena reached a plateau of excellence (2002-o3) during which she didn't have a problem beating opponents who hand't caught up with her game yet,But she did had severe chocking problems before 2002 e.g. during a semifinal at Wimbledon in 2001 against Capriati,she had a severe case complete with a diahrrea break and she ended up losing the match.That was pretty obvious.
Cris Senior

Serena wasn't in the SF at Wimbledon 2001.

K-Dog
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:32 AM
Venus used to be in 2000 and 2001, but now she gets nervious on big points against top players. She doesn't believe in herself anymore. If she starts to believe in herself again, look out!! Serena isn't as mentally tough and some give her credit. She is extremely emotional and negative lately, but she fights well and doesn't give up leads or big points anymore. That's key. If Venus fight as hard as Serena and took advantage of winning positions, she would be in the top 2 right now!

I'd say that Maria, Justine, and Lindsay right now (if you take away her loss in the finals of Oz).

vogus
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:35 AM
this is really a stupid thread, because "mentally weak" is a totally relative concept. Compared to the tens of thousands of other women in the world who play tennis competetively, NONE, thats right NONE, of the top WTA players are "mentally weak". So there's your answer.

Tripp
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:14 AM
Mariana Díaz-Oliva :p

Chunchun
Apr 18th, 2005, 04:24 AM
LenaD is usually a fighter :D

but in the final :sad: she can NEVER show her best :crying2: :mad:

_LuCaS_
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:32 AM
for the last time, Maria did not choke in the AO, Serena fought hard for those points and won !! No choking of any kind !!
This is the easiest explanation. Maria is not a choker and Serena is a fighter. Everyone is pleased. But what if Maria would have lost the match leading 5-0 ? Same explanation?
OK so let me get this straight:
top player losses a considerable* lead against top player
-1st choker
-2nd fighter
top player losses a considerable* lead against medium/poor ranked player
-1st choker
-2nd lucky
medium/poor ranked player losses a considerable* lead against top player
-1st unlucky
-2nd fighter
*could mean several match points too
Is this how it works? :tape: Unfortunately yes.

Another thing, there is no difference between mental toughness and fighting spirit. The body obeys the brain. You can develop certain reflexes but this is not the issue here. It's all about MENTAL.
According to some studies, we have 2 major concepts fear and nervousness
It very important to distinguish between them.
Whereas fear is always a negative mental state, nervousness is a physical condition (e.g., increased heart rate, sweating) that can actually improve play.
Fear is seldom helpful in tennis. It may lead to negative outcomes including dangerously high arousal, impaired concentration, reduced confidence, tensed muscles, lost rhythm, indecision, expectations of failure, and lowered perceptions of control.
Typically, fear increases with the perceived importance of the situation. Play becomes more conscious, careful and tentative in an attempt to avoid mistakes. The term "choking" is used to describe this effect. A serve that was once loose and fluid is reduced to a fat marshmallow, and groundstrokes are awkwardly steered and pushed for added security. Opponents not overcome by these same tendencies quickly realize an opportunity, play more aggressively, and assume control of the match.

Philbo
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:44 AM
I really disagree that winning wimbledon or the US Open at age 17 is a sign of a mentally tough player. I agree with Fingon's analysis that mentally tough is about who can hang in there in a match when they are being outplayed and just await their chances..

But I disagree with the notion that winning a slam at 17 means you are a mentally strong player. I think at 17 its EASIER to win slams than it is at say, 25, or 30, or god forbid 35..I just think that as you get older you begin to really understand that your opportunities are numbered and limited and that you have more of a sense of occasion which can lead to playing more nervously..

But at age 17 you are just out there in virtual 'auto pilot' - you have your whole career ahead of you, will have plenty more chances if you lose and generally you'll be seen as the underdog... I dont see how winning from that position gives you the claim of being mentally strong..

Fingon
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:58 AM
I understand the subtlety of Fingon's argument. A player whose A game is far superior to the field's, and who has a tendency to show up with that A (or A-) game, may not need mental toughness to win his/her matches. Good point.

But one has to be really careful with that line of reasoning. Because it assumes that the shift to a higher gear in a 2nd or 3rd set (a la Sampras or Graf or a younger Seles) against a top-notch opponent doesn't require mental fortitude. Dangerous assumption.

Secondly, we tend to look back on a player's period of domination with rose-tinted shades. Serena, like Graf, like Venus in 2000-01, like Sampras, like Federer now, won matches when she wasn't playing her best. One doesn't need to go to Aussie 2005 for the obvious example. Most of that 1st half of 2003 was a mess. On a regular basis, Rena came to play with only her B game in her bag. The rest was gut and belief.

I agree with you, but the think is that when Serena wasn't playing at her best, she was still better than most other players.

The same didn't happen with Venus, or Graf at times, they won despite being overplayed (eg Graf against Novotna at Wimbledon), Venus has won matches where she was on the ropes, but somehow found the way to win.

don't be fooled, a Serena at 70% is still unbeatable for most players, she is not at that level now, she is 9000 notches below it ;)

Fingon
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:00 AM
I really disagree that winning wimbledon or the US Open at age 17 is a sign of a mentally tough player. I agree with Fingon's analysis that mentally tough is about who can hang in there in a match when they are being outplayed and just await their chances..

But I disagree with the notion that winning a slam at 17 means you are a mentally strong player. I think at 17 its EASIER to win slams than it is at say, 25, or 30, or god forbid 35..I just think that as you get older you begin to really understand that your opportunities are numbered and limited and that you have more of a sense of occasion which can lead to playing more nervously..

But at age 17 you are just out there in virtual 'auto pilot' - you have your whole career ahead of you, will have plenty more chances if you lose and generally you'll be seen as the underdog... I dont see how winning from that position gives you the claim of being mentally strong..

I agree partially, it's true a 17 years old has nothing to lose and play free, and they think "if it's not this time, I will have another chance", and the proof is that players did win GSs very young later had problems (eg Hingis), but I still think they shows mental strenght by not being overwhelmed, being in centre court in Wimbledon or Arthur Ashe Stadium must be really terrifying for a 17 years old.

Brooks.
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:13 AM
Serena has the most mental strength of any active player today.... there are several matches that prove this time and time again.... in 2001 she really struggled with tight matches and then in 2002 she basically said that she was tired of losing and she changed into a different player...the matches that come to mind are:

1. 2003 AO serena def. kim........of course kim had her nervous moments no doubt......but for serena to charge the net on match pt. down and hit a volley winner.....that takes mental strength......she didnt give up no matter what and she won that match...kim didnt lose it

2. 2005 AO serena def. sharapova....serena was behind the entire match... every set she was behind....... but she found a way to win no matter what... not only did she save three match pts. but people forget she saved three break pts. in the second to last game.... and in essence her mental strength is what caused maria to practically give up in the last game

3. 2003 wimbledon serena def. justine.....most people wouldnt consider this...but i think it shows just how mentally strong serena is... all the drama and controversy that went into this match after what happened at roland garros... she not only beat henin .. she destroyed her.....even mary carillo said "serena outplayed justine from every area today"

4. 2003 Aussie open final serena def. venus......serena had beaten venus 4 times in a row up to this point....everyone was saying it was venus' time to win a slam...serena was going for 4 in a row......so much tension so much drama but again serena comes through a tight match

5. 2004 wimbledon serena def. momo......serena won this match on mental strength and fight alone lol.....no need for anymore comment

There are so many more matches than these 5 that display her mental strength .... i mean the entire 2005 Australian Open displays it..... she won that tournament on mental strength

Fingon
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:19 AM
sorry but I can't resist

Serena has the most mental strength of any active player today.... there are several matches that prove this time and time again.... in 2001 she really struggled with tight matches and then in 2002 she basically said that she was tired of losing and she changed into a different player...the matches that come to mind are:

1. 2003 AO serena def. kim........of course kim had her nervous moments no doubt......but for serena to charge the net on match pt. down and hit a volley winner.....that takes mental strength......she didnt give up no matter what and she won that match...kim didnt lose it


Kim choked.

2. 2005 AO serena def. sharapova....serena was behind the entire match... every set she was behind....... but she found a way to win no matter what... not only did she save three match pts. but people forget she saved three break pts. in the second to last game.... and in essence her mental strength is what caused maria to practically give up in the last game


I give you this one, but Maria did get tight.

3. 2003 wimbledon serena def. justine.....most people wouldnt consider this...but i think it shows just how mentally strong serena is... all the drama and controversy that went into this match after what happened at roland garros... she not only beat henin .. she destroyed her.....even mary carillo said "serena outplayed justine from every area today"


Justine is my favourite player, but that day Serena was on fire, she simply outplayed Justine, that's not mental strenght, it's good playing.

4. 2003 Aussie open final serena def. venus......serena had beaten venus 4 times in a row up to this point....everyone was saying it was venus' time to win a slam...serena was going for 4 in a row......so much tension so much drama but again serena comes through a tight match


I wouldn't count any match against Venus

5. 2004 wimbledon serena def. momo......serena won this match on mental strength and fight alone lol.....no need for anymore comment


against Momo? lol, she choked more than Kim.

There are so many more matches than these 5 that display her mental strength .... i mean the entire 2005 Australian Open displays it..... she won that tournament on mental strength

she did show mental strenght, but I prefer to call it guts. As I said, Sharapova got a little tight and Lindsay has serious problems in finals. She was winning, missed a stupid shot being 40-0 up and totalled lost it, Serena did take advantage of that. Maybe now that her game is not that dominant she can win matches based on mental strenght, she did show it in Melbourne, but not the other tournaments she played, if she does it again I might reconsider.

Brooks.
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:28 AM
question.......how could kim have had 2 match pts and choked........serena hit a winner on at least one of those match pts by attacking the net (i cant remember the other one)...........yes kim choked in her second serving for the match......but thats irrelevant b/c the reason she began to choke is b/c she knew serena wasnt going to give up....in essence serena made kim get tighter and tighter.....so it all comes back to serena's mental strength

and the wimbledon 03' match......for serena to be on fire in that match she had to be mentally strong......how many players can you think of that play their best when the most pressure is on them......i cannot think of a match where there was more pressure on serena to deliver and she did

and please dont throw out the sister card lol......i mean its getting really old... serena was going for 4 in a row and she won and beat venus who really wanted to win that match..... its mental strength..... not venus is her sister and she didnt want to beat serena :rolleyes: :p

deja_entendu
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:38 AM
question.......how could kim have had 2 match pts and choked........serena hit a winner on at least one of those match pts by attacking the net (i cant remember the other one).....

In case you so happened to have forgotten this point, Serena hit an EXTREMELY weak approach shot into the Clijsters backhand wheelhouse and Kim tentatively guided her passing shot high over the net and right into the racket of Serena's volley -- IMHO Serena could not have asked for an easier set-up from Kimmy, and Kim had all the time in the world to hit the shot wherever she wanted... which apparently was 1) loopy and 2) down the middle. :rolleyes:

Brooks.
Apr 18th, 2005, 07:06 AM
In case you so happened to have forgotten this point, Serena hit an EXTREMELY weak approach shot into the Clijsters backhand wheelhouse and Kim tentatively guided her passing shot high over the net and right into the racket of Serena's volley -- IMHO Serena could not have asked for an easier set-up from Kimmy, and Kim had all the time in the world to hit the shot wherever she wanted... which apparently was 1) loopy and 2) down the middle. :rolleyes:

oh ok.....thanks i see it so much clearer now :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :p ....serena is one lucky player to have so many top players choke in the biggest matches of her career......i tell you what :rolleyes: :lol:

Sir Stefwhit
Apr 18th, 2005, 08:33 AM
oh ok.....thanks i see it so much clearer now :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :p ....serena is one lucky player to have so many top players choke in the biggest matches of her career......i tell you what :rolleyes: :lol: :worship:

I love how people come up with these elaborate theories to discredit ones mental fortitude when every other logical explanation says otherwise. Put me in the category of people who believe that Serena, along with Maria, are two of the best examples of mental strength currently on tour.

I also don’t buy the argument about Kim being a choker and mentally weak. With any player you can find examples of them folding under pressure and with most champions you can also find tons of examples of them relying on their mental strength to help pull out victories. Kim is no different in this regard. We are all familiar with a few instances where she folded to the pressure of the moment; against Serena at Oz in 2003, and that same year she froze in the finals against Justine at the French and the US Open toward the end of the year. I wont argue that during those matches she did appear mentally fragile. What people forget is that on several other big occasions she's shown she can get the job done. She looked mentally solid winning her first YEC final against Serena, during Serena’s best year on tour. She looked mentally solid defending her title at the following year at the YEC. In 2001 at the SF at Roland Garros she lost the first set 6-2 and was down 4-1 in the second before she came back to beat Justine and advance to the finals. If that wasn’t a display of mental strength, then I don’t know what is. She also fought hard against JCap in the finals of Roland Garros, even though she lost 10-12 in the third, she showed no signs of mental weakness, she was just outplayed. .... I know the bottom line is that she hasn't won a slam yet, but I don't think it's fair to say that Kim is weak with regards to her mental toughness. Her first two slams against Justine were ugly, but the other two finals she simply got beat. She has shown moments of weakness, but she's a far cry from being the head case that she has been made out to be, IMO.