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View Full Version : What is Elena D's Problem? Will she ever make the jump to elite tournament winner?


xan
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:36 PM
Again we see Elena losing a big final. In a winning situation, up 5-3 in the first set against Justine, she then suffered 5 breaks of her serve! In the second set, she then fought back from 1-4 to 4-4, but lost it again. She has been in Tier 1 and Grand Slam Finals, but has never won one. She's got to No 5 in the world on points, which shows her ability, but the only title she's won in the past year and a half is a Tier 3.

I'm wondering is the problem so much her serve - or is it really mental weakness when a big opportunity comes in sight?

This isn't a knocking thread. I like Elena (most of the time). But what is it that makes her play so badly in crunch situations - and can it be cured?

squash
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:40 PM
I was thinking the same thing, Dementieva just can not win. What is wrong with the girl.

Oh Yeah! It's that pathic serve. Go work on you serve Elena. You have wonderful ground strokes.

natacha1
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:43 PM
I think her serve was quite good today, it can be worse with Elena.
I hope for her that she ever wins a big tournament, she deserves to win.

gmak
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:44 PM
it's mental i'm afraid, today she only served 6 DF and 5 of them were in the second set...

she can't win a slam without winning a Tier1 first and that was a big chance wasted... i can't see her winning Berlin and Rome with the likes of Kim, Maria, Amelie, Serena there as well as Henin.

goldenlox
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:46 PM
Lena beat Justine and Lindsay to win AI in 2003.

sebbe
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:48 PM
Really feel sorry for her, she deserves to win a final. Elena is one of the most working girls out there so she deserve to win a big final. And yeah, her serve is one problem but I really admire her because she doesn't let her serve effect the rest of her game. But she get so tight in crucial moments in matches.

gmak
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:49 PM
i know but that was a Tier2

goldenlox
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:50 PM
i know but that was a Tier2Lena is in the top 5.
She reached 2 of the last 4 slam finals.
She's won 4 tournaments in the last 2 years.
She's doing okay.

starr
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:52 PM
Her poor serve is mental. Fred Stolle says she serves well in practice. Sometimes she even throws in good serves in matches, but it's all mental at crunch time. She just can't do it.

But she is working on her serve. It's not really fair to her to say "Go work on your serve" because she is working on it.

TF Chipmunk
Apr 17th, 2005, 07:53 PM
Again we see Elena losing a big final. In a winning situation, up 5-3 in the first set against Justine, she then suffered 5 breaks of her serve! In the second set, she then fought back from 1-4 to 4-4, but lost it again. She has been in Tier 1 and Grand Slam Finals, but has never won one. She's got to No 5 in the world on points, which shows her ability, but the only title she's won in the past year and a half is a Tier 3.

I'm wondering is the problem so much her serve - or is it really mental weakness when a big opportunity comes in sight?

This isn't a knocking thread. I like Elena (most of the time). But what is it that makes her play so badly in crunch situations - and can it be cured?


If you're talking about today only, well, when Elena was up 5-3 in the first set Justine upped her game. When Elena tied the 2nd set at 4-4, Justine again picked up her game. Today was a case where her opponent was too good for her. The match was really close, and Justine played the big points better. Simple as that. However, in other matches, you could blame Elena's serve and everything else, but today, Justine beat her, not her own serve.

xan
Apr 17th, 2005, 08:22 PM
If you're talking about today only, well, when Elena was up 5-3 in the first set Justine upped her game. When Elena tied the 2nd set at 4-4, Justine again picked up her game. Today was a case where her opponent was too good for her. The match was really close, and Justine played the big points better. Simple as that. However, in other matches, you could blame Elena's serve and everything else, but today, Justine beat her, not her own serve.

I did watch the match. And Justine played very well in patches. However Elena made all sorts of UE at crucial points in the match, and seemed to lose her focus as soon as she was ahead.

There were times, (mostly in set 2) when Justine was hitting unplayable shots. But most of the time Justine was beatable. And she certainly didn't earn all of those five straight breaks of serve from 3-5 down to 7-5 4-1 up.

xan
Apr 17th, 2005, 08:25 PM
Her poor serve is mental. Fred Stolle says she serves well in practice. Sometimes she even throws in good serves in matches, but it's all mental at crunch time. She just can't do it.

But she is working on her serve. It's not really fair to her to say "Go work on your serve" because she is working on it.

I think this may be true.

Her first serve is good. Her second serve is dodgy. But it seems to me that it is her mental state that produces the rubbish at crucial times. How do you train yourself out of that?

Should she get a new coach?

DEETHELICK
Apr 17th, 2005, 08:34 PM
This is an extremely frustrating loss for an Elena fan.

She had a SP, should have really served it out at 5-3 and when at 4-4 40-15, she has to make her shots work.

There is more of a mental rather than technical problem. This was a great opportunity for Elena. She could have been the winner in 2 sets if she'd focused hard enough.

Oh well...

selyoink
Apr 17th, 2005, 09:08 PM
Her main problem is the serve. It is good at times but against the upper echelon players she is unable to hold at crucial times. Until she can hold when it matters the most she will never win any of the major tournaments.

xan
Apr 17th, 2005, 10:42 PM
So what's the solution? Coaching? Sport psychology? Just keep plodding on?

goldenlox
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:25 PM
So what's the solution? Coaching? Sport psychology? Just keep plodding on?Last year was Lena's best ever on the tour.
It's not like she used to win majors, and now she struggles.
Lena's first slam final was the 2004 FO.
She's playing well this year. She's in the top 5.
She just lost to a three time slam winner in a Tier I final.
Lena works very hard, and believes she will continue to improve.

ys
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:56 PM
It is mental. She played 8 big matches ( higher than Tier II ) in finals and she didn't win a set in them. Surely it is mental.

mishar
Apr 18th, 2005, 02:59 PM
She held her serve four times out of eleven service games. That's not good enough against a top player. She may not have doublefaulted as much, but the number of points she wins on her serve is too small. And that is particularly true when it comes to crunch time, such as 4-4 in the second set in the final against jHH. You have to be able to count on your service game in the most nerve-wracking situations.

I only watched the second set, but I did not think Justine was playing that well.

Chunchun
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:01 PM
I'm afraid ........ N$% :crying2: :o

but don't take this seriously, i m always a negative/pessimistic person

mishar
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:12 PM
Clearly her problems with her serve are mental. She can hit very good serves, she obviously has the coordination and the strength and the technique.

But she has been mentally tough --- her performance at the US Open last year as the shining example where she came through in big moments.

However, at the best tournaments, there (at least so far) has always been one player who can count on their serve more than her.

ys
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:15 PM
She held her serve four times out of eleven service games. That's not good enough against a top player. She may not have doublefaulted as much, but the number of points she wins on her serve is too small. And that is particularly true when it comes to crunch time, such as 4-4 in the second set in the final against jHH. You have to be able to count on your service game in the most nerve-wracking situations.

I only watched the second set, but I did not think Justine was playing that well.

This final was not as indicative of her problem though. She was very unlucky in two points in a row in the first set. First when the linesman gave her the set, but the umpire correctly overruled - it was less than half an inch difference between winning the set and not. And the next very point - horrible, horrible netcord when jhh was completely out of position..

bandabou
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:27 PM
This is what the Russians have always been....last year they had a semi breakout, but they seem to have reverted to their old usual selfs again.

goldenlox
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:42 PM
This is what the Russians have always been....last year they had a semi breakout, but they seem to have reverted to their old usual selfs again.So far, the Russians have defended every title they won in 2004, plus winning Tokyo and Paris.
We might have the first Russian #1. And she is still 17(for a few hours more:lol: )

Doc
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:53 PM
This final was not as indicative of her problem though. She was very unlucky in two points in a row in the first set. First when the linesman gave her the set, but the umpire correctly overruled - it was less than half an inch difference between winning the set and not. And the next very point - horrible, horrible netcord when jhh was completely out of position..

True. But she really ought to have won that First set - and then the match would have been hers, I feel.

bandabou
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:54 PM
So far, the Russians have defended every title they won in 2004, plus winning Tokyo and Paris.
We might have the first Russian #1. And she is still 17(for a few hours more:lol: )

That's the thing....right now Maria IS Russia....and she isn't even THAT Russian. Unlike last year when you had a real Russia armada.

bandabou
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:56 PM
So far, the Russians have defended every title they won in 2004, plus winning Tokyo and Paris.
We might have the first Russian #1. And she is still 17(for a few hours more:lol: )

That's the thing....right now Maria IS Russia....and she isn't even THAT Russian. Unlike last year when you had a real Russia armada. And even herself is showing signs that the pressure is getting to her...witness OZ open.

goldenlox
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:56 PM
We'll see. Lena D. just made a Tier I final.
Sveta is doing okay this year.
Maria is better than she was last spring.

Doc
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:57 PM
Maria is the only non-belgian to have won a Tier 1 this year

bandabou
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:59 PM
and serena is the ONLY player to win a MAJOR this year.

goldenlox
Apr 18th, 2005, 04:09 PM
Russians defend everything important for the rest of the year.
The FO, Wimbledon, the USO, the YEC, Fed Cup, and the Kremlin Cup, which is important to Russians.
Lena D. was in 3 of those finals. And now she's on the Russian 2005 Fed Cup team.
Defending World Champions.

miffedmax
Apr 18th, 2005, 04:32 PM
The Russians have a bunch of Top 20 players and scads of youngsters on the way.

I don't see any Yanks coming up to replace our current crop of top players. I tend to not be nationalist* when choosing favorites, but I would like to see somebody.

*(except for Texas players)

mr_zebra
Apr 18th, 2005, 04:35 PM
God, i love her but i don't see her winning a tier 1 or major.
She simply can not get even ONE free point off a serve, and that is vital. Most every other top 30 player CAN get lots of 'free' points by either aceing or serving too hard for the opponent.
ED has to rely ONLY on her huge groundstrokes to win and that's not gonna be enough to cut it.
It is amazing that she's top 5 - shows you how incredible the rest of her game actually is.

ys
Apr 18th, 2005, 04:44 PM
I still believe she can do it. Herr serve really improved. It used to be atrocius.. Now it is just average, not anywhere close to being a weapon yet, but no longer a major liability either. If she keeps on improving her serve things will only get better.

Wojtek
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:14 PM
In Charlston she was in the final but she didn't beat top players. It was her huge chance to take tier one title. Normally to win tier one you have to beat best players in the world and just check her head to head against top players. I don't think she will win tier one this year - maybe Moscow because it will the weakest tier one

jonny84
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:54 PM
I feel it is just a case of Elena getting past her match nerves - she has only played a handful of major finals - the important thing is that she has got there which is an acheivement in itself - her next step is to stay calm, focused and just to go for it.

Shonami Slam
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:21 PM
goldenlox here is doing a great job of teaching most of you guys proportions - look at it this way - even if lena DOES slump this year, as well as nastya, kuzzy, petrova and vera - they all aren't pathetic - they just didn't start the year with titles every week, and you know what?
these girls are what - 20-25 years old?
they are still gunna be here for years to come, count on elena to try out for a another tierI or two in her next 6-10 years on tour.

lukehingis
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:41 PM
I think in time she'll have her breakthrough...

kosmikgroove
Apr 18th, 2005, 06:51 PM
Elena's got a GS title in her somewhere! i just know it!!

bandabou
Apr 18th, 2005, 07:03 PM
goldenlox here is doing a great job of teaching most of you guys proportions - look at it this way - even if lena DOES slump this year, as well as nastya, kuzzy, petrova and vera - they all aren't pathetic - they just didn't start the year with titles every week, and you know what?
these girls are what - 20-25 years old?
they are still gunna be here for years to come, count on elena to try out for a another tierI or two in her next 6-10 years on tour.

Yep....and to fail nevertheless...

Vamos Feńa
Apr 19th, 2005, 05:00 PM
Well it depends IMO if she really wants to win. Looking at US SF she wanted to be in final but she wanted also to score her 1st win over Jen, if she wants to win she's going 4winners all the time just like in Semis vs Patty at the end of 2nd set and in 3rd she was hitting hard and was as agresive as in NY.
But someone said she'll have a breakthrough well taht's also true ;) Just look, 2 years ago Lena playing defensively and being frightened of taking risk suddenly changed everything and shocked the world winning Amelia Island (def. Daniela Justine and Lindsay). That breakthrough will probably come in Tier's I and in GS I think.
Wish You that Lena! :D :kiss:
You deserve that!

skanky~skanketta
Apr 19th, 2005, 06:19 PM
and serena is the ONLY player to win a MAJOR this year.

only because only ONE slam has been played so far.

Tennisaddict
Apr 19th, 2005, 08:46 PM
Dementieva is one of the best players IMO because she has made it in to the top ten with a serve that's so below any level, it's unbelievable. I have great respect for her and if her serve would get better she would be dangerous to the top players. That's her main problem right there. Her groundstrokes and return of serve are good enough to beat almost everybody on tour, but when she faces top players like Davenport, Serena, Kim and Henin her lack of a good serve becomes very apparent. Because you''ll have to have a complete game to get passed these players. I think she also has mental problems when she's in big finals, the Roland Garros final showed that. Myskina didn't even had to work up a sweat :rolleyes:.

_LuCaS_
Apr 19th, 2005, 09:09 PM
and serena is the ONLY player to win a MAJOR this year.
:lol: obviously

pisces
Apr 19th, 2005, 09:53 PM
I hope she get it together? I like the beautiful young lady.She has a good game!

xan
Apr 19th, 2005, 10:29 PM
Elena's got a GS title in her somewhere! i just know it!!

But she needs to change something first.

In another thread it was suggested she needs to get angry. Maybe that is the key to avoiding the nerves.

Dementinator
Apr 19th, 2005, 10:35 PM
I agree Lena needs get angry ,cos when she does shes lethal ,I have seen her pissed on a coupla times and she just blasted winner after winner...

Perhaps someone tell her that the player on otherside of net dissed her mum ,that will do it ,she will go mad then ,6 feet of blonde rage!! Only problem is that not even Delta Force would stop her then!!!

Seriously tho ,Lena getting a little fired up is good ,if she really wants it REALLY wants it,and has a slight problem with her oppo ,she often wins ,so more agression is needed sometimes!!