She won in Montreal, reach career high, but lost too more matches than we expected. Ana didn`t reach top10 as she (and we) wanted, she had problems with injuries (missed Berlin, Rome, Moscow and Zurich)...
I think she didn`t make any improvements in her game and 2006. wasn`t better than 2005. I hope 2007. will be better.
Nov 3rd, 2006, 01:53 PM
Disappointing year, to be honest. Apart from Montreal it was nothing to write home about. Way too many losses to lower ranked players (Stosur, Kirilenko, Chakvetadze x2, Krajicek, Peer, Poutchkova) and not nearly enough wins over top players. The worst of all is that she blew good chances numerous times (against Kuznetsova in Sydney, Dementieva in IW and Rosmalen). Had pretty crappy results at Slams. Really, really nothing spectacular about this year.
But there are a few signs of improvement. She has obviously lost some weight and moves faster. Her forehand is even more explosive now. Her volley skills have improved, but still leave a lot to be desired. On the other hand, her serve has really deteriorated and is very inconsistent. The backhand is now a glaring weakness in her game and she has to work on it.
The next season will tell us if she's the real deal or another Tatiana Golovin.
Nov 3rd, 2006, 02:19 PM
Yea indeed,disappointing. But yeah,she changed the coach,I think Zoltan couldn't take her to the top 10 really,but I have faith that David will...She showed it in Montreal. But yeah,after that tournament,it's all been pretty disappointing indeed. next year will be very important for Ana's career. There's a lot of work to be done in the off season,but Ana is working hard and I hope it'll pay off...Go girl!:bounce:
Nov 4th, 2006, 09:24 AM
even as an eternal optimist i have to agree it was not a good year for ana. apart from montreal her best results were qfs, which wouldn't be bad if she had reached at least 1 qf at a grand slam, but no, not even that :shrug: the positive thing is that i think she has firmly established herself in the top 20 this year and i think she will stay there, but we all expect more and so does she. she started the year ranked 21st and now she is nr 14 in the world, but she did not reach the top 10 which was her declared goal and it won't happen unless she starts reaching at least sfs regularly. winning tournaments would be better, of course, but after a year like this i won't hold my breath.
Nov 4th, 2006, 09:37 AM
Yeh I agree with the above sentiments; overall very disappointed with her year. She really only beat those she should have, and didnít beat many players ranked above her. She didnít achieve good results in the Slams, which got off to a terrible start after her 2nd Round collapse at the hands of Stosur. She failed to make significant inroads to her ranking and despite a good period in which she won Montreal I donít think there were massive improvements to her game. Her movement, despite being improved, has a long way to go and she must find greater consistency in her shots. She makes too many unforced errors and seems to lack patience.
Weíre all aware of her potential but at this stage she has a long way to go to deliver on it. Letís hope 2007 brings much better results.
Nov 4th, 2006, 09:55 AM
Yeah, way too many losses to lower-ranked players, poor showings at GSs, only one good week in the whole year, pathetic record against Top10 players. :help: :(
I kinda expected this year to look how it looked. It might sound a bit too optimistic but I see Ana's career developing as Roger's. All knew he had the tools to reach the very top but he couldn't really get going whe he was young. It's all the matter of getting it all together. When he did... :worship: just look where he is at. I can see many similarities between him and Ana. :angel:
Next year will tell an awful lot more. I really believe that David will work hard with her during the off-season. Hopefully results will keep already coming in Australia... I can't wait.
But yes, as for 2006 - mediocre. :(
Nov 4th, 2006, 10:00 AM
hmm, federer is ana's favourite player...
Nov 4th, 2006, 10:19 AM
I'm dissapointed with this season...
At the end her rankings is more because of the injuries of some players, then hers good results
I hope next year wil be much better!!!
Nov 4th, 2006, 10:28 AM
well, ana had 2 injuries this year as well. i think she did deserve her ranking, but with her potential she should achieve more.
Nov 4th, 2006, 10:41 AM
azdaja Ana had two "small" injuries...nothing that kept her out of the court for about two month's...
I'm talking about Davenport, Pierce...
When you look this noumber of points that Ana have now, you can see that at the middle of the year with them Ana wouldn't be in top 15! That's what I'm talking about...
Nov 4th, 2006, 10:54 AM
that's true, but it's not like ana's injuries didn't affect the number of points she has at all. it happens to all players.
Nov 4th, 2006, 11:18 AM
I want that I can say that above posts are wrong, but sadly I kinda have to agree with it.
If in a whole year the best results are Winning Montreal and then just Round 4 Wimbledon. Then you can speak of a bad year.
Now I actually imagine what the results would be if Kuharsky was still her coach.
Ana is 1 year older now, more experienced, moves faster and has 1 more title. That's about it. She isn't any closer to the real top, so it's a wasted year. After Roland Garros 2005 I thought, wow this can be it! After that you didn't see any great results. And then Montreal 2006. FINALLY, now she's gonna make it. Well, the next tournaments were as bad as can be. Then the injury, but got back in Linz. She played really well against Maria there and just like in Montreal you could see that she had some improvements.
Now Hasselt, tough matches against number 240 and a loss in 2 sets against Misa. I'm getting scared now. I can't continue like this in the next years. Maybe she will be lucky to get top 10 for a few weeks, but she still will be inconsistent. Her potential is only at 75% now and that's not enough. She can be a great one but there's a lot of work to do. David and Scott are good for her, but Ana has to do the rest. I better do not make any expectations for 2007, cause I don't want to be dissapointed again. Her schedule looks nice with big tournaments.
Ana, I still believe in you and I hope you will prove everyone that you're not just a talent.
Nov 5th, 2006, 01:44 PM
Bad sign for this season was wasting 6-5 *40-00 against Sveta in Sidney.
Till then we were all used to occasional off days when Ana would lose 2 and 2
but this was first time to play solid and lose, crack in her armour. In second half she lost her invincibility against lower ranked players and top100 now
having more and more dangerous upset specialists so if she does not get her
act together we could see even more dissapointing loses next year.
She got to no14 with one good run, there is big probability she could have
2-3 of these next year and get into top10.
We could take this as sophomore slump but she was too consistent in her mediocrity and as i remeber second year slump was custom for solid players and not for great ones.
There was enough talk about her BH and volleys but her absolute worst shot
is block return. 10/10 is out or harmless sitter. No use of that shot at
Out of all younger players she comes to the net most. Are agenda is to make
her a complete player? If that, we all need much more patience and still its doubtfull she can cover all weaknesses enough. For now better solution would be just working on her strenghts and try to make something of her BH. It worked for another young player we all know and most of us hate:devil: .
About coaches, i still think van Harpen was best for her.
And i disagree that she player particulary well against Pova. Game plan had same weaknesses like against Serena, losing 7-6 or 6-3 is no different.
For her style of play gradual improvement is not very likely so we can expect
nerve breaking year when she will look one day like best player ever and next
day awful. Untill all clicks, hopefully.
Federer had a huge slump in his second year on tour. Sampras, and justine too ;)
Not that it means that ana is going to go the federer way (lacks the same gifts of exceptional footwork, movement and perfect shoulder rotation unfortunately), but there is no pattern or hard and fast rule that determines the timeline of a players' development. Don't be too disappointed because she hasn't progressed the way you thought she might in her second year. She has just been figured out, as a lot of young players are in their second year ( I think the krajicek match was a pretty damning indication of that).
To stay ahead of the pack she has to evolve. She needs to develop better tactical acumen to make the best of her weapons, and cover her weaknesses. For a shotmaker that doesn't develop overnight, but is more of a gradual process of incorporating shot-sequences balanced with low-percentage play rather than suddenly trying to play smart. That takes time. One of the problems is that ana at this point is a jack-of-all trades. She is neither multidimensional, nor is she completely one-dimensional. She neither uses her strengths to their fullest, nor have her finesse shots developed to the point where she can win points with them. But making mistakes is the best way to learn.
Ana was never going to improve by geometric progression like someone like Sharapova, and thats what I think a lot of people expected. Sharapova is a coach-created player and can be spoonfed and moulded. Ana is a more natural player. Her mentality is completely different, and all players should not be judged using early bloomers as yardsticks. Its a question of learning how, and when to play the shots, and thats a question of match experience and lots of it. A lot of players with deficiencies in fitness and movement make bad choices because they are apprehensive of being pushed on the defensive, and so they try to end rallies early. When they have more confidence in their court coverage, and overall game they tend to make smarter choices.
Technically, I think ana's serve is a disappointment, and her backhand hasn't improved as much as needed. It all boils down to not having great shoulder rotation. She needs to work on her footwork, and needs to be more alert on court. The good thing is that she's trying to mix things up, coming to the net more. If she's trying to mix up her groundstrokes too, i'm not really bothered if she loses a few matches (and i hope that is the reason for her recent losses).
The bottom line is, her existing game is not enough to challenge the top players, and she is being worked out by youngsters she used to beat. Its a sign that she's stagnated. Either she adds to her game, makes some tactical changes, and accepts the failures she is going to face along the way, or she gets stuck as a ball-basher. If she chooses the hard way, she is going to have a very tough time in the coming months, but the eventual result will be consistent results. If she chooses to stick with her current game, she'll have periods where she'll make a huge splash, but she'll never really develop sharapova-like consistency. I definitely think she has the goods to become a top player, but as of now I can't really say what kind of top player she'll become. Just don't set any time-frames for her, or you'll forget to enjoy her game when she does play well, and she can be great to watch.
She wont be another Golovin but
im scared she could become another Patty (for her on court attitude, not off
court "adventures"). Must decide if she wants to just earn for good living or
her goal is to be real top player. Top ten is still very reachable but for now becoming real top player and contender for titles is in doubt.
Jelena had an awful second half of 2005, and looked completely disinterested on court, but look at her now. Don't judge ana's attitude on a weekly basis, because young players whose games are still forming go through their ups and downs. Not everyone is gifted with the emotionless facade of a Sharapova, but that doesn't mean that they'll never develop the attitude of a champion. Justine was not always as determined as she is today. The mental aspect is another facet of player that takes time. AFAIK ana is not a headcase.
BTW, I completely disagree with the comments about Golovin, because the way I see it golovin may be a totally different player, but her mental makeup is somewhat similiar to ana's, being quite instinctive. She could be a bit of a choker, but now she's showing some real steel. She had a terrible slump in her soph year, much worse than ana's, and I think her development is a good blueprint for ana. She's playing much smarter, although it took a while for her to develop her tactics (and it was because of this she slumped), and at the same time she plays agressive and goes for her shots. She's going to be a terrific player, maybe even better than ana. Golovin may have stagnated in terms of ranking for a couple of years, but she's shown vast improvement in her game, and I think the results are going to start showing soon. We don't need to get discouraged if ana also stagnates for a while.
Nov 6th, 2006, 03:18 PM
after some pretty good early season form, i think she beat mauresmo in australia, she kinda tailed off. definitely too many losses against lower ranked players. i would have expected her to beat krajicek in hasselt as krajicek always seems a bit over weight and doesnt move well. i think ana's problem is partly her movement and partly her lack of a huge killer shot. her groundies are big, but not quite big enough. she also doesnt use her serve as effectively as she could.