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View Full Version : Svetlana: "I didn't play my best game, that's why i lost"


Marshmallow
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:00 PM
In addition: "With these players you just have so few opportunities.

"If you don't use them there's no way I'm going to win. I had so many of them. I felt I just didn't move to the ball well enough because I was pretty tight.

"It's very tough. I think the match was much closer than the score for sure.

To what extent do you agree?

:D

Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/tennis/6985711.stm

lympyisthebest
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:05 PM
I do agree, she was ahead in so many games, so many missed opportunities.

DimaDinosaur
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:15 PM
She was nervous, but give her credit for playing way better than she did in that semifinals. Ugh, that match was so ugly that I had to turn the tv off and take a walk.

Justine was determined, but still there were games that Justine got away with such as that 0-3* and *1-5 in the first set and in the second set, kuzzie was up *1-2 40-0! and it went to deuce 7 times before juju broke. So not the drama. and that last game where justine hit 3 df's and 3 second serves........ :eek:

austennis
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:16 PM
Justine was lucky.. if she had played that standard against venus she may have lost a set or match.. Sveta will look back at this as missed chance

sportywoman
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:20 PM
Both didn't play their best game !

Marshmallow
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:47 PM
Justine does tend to put her opponents under pressure early on the match, breaking them right at the start. That's a really clever tactic, that no doubt her experience in playing lots of big matches these past few years has helped.

She's sharp from the first ball.

Marshmallow
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:48 PM
And also, going by the title: Do youthink Svetlana could have / should have won if she played her best? To what extent do you agree with that?

thetennisutopian
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:51 PM
And also, going by the title: Do youthink Svetlana could have / should have won if she played her best? To what extent do you agree with that?

I honestly don't think there's much she could've done out there. At her best Justine would have still beaten her. Justine owns her on the tennis court. She did have many chances out there but she was just way too tentative and didn't take advantage of her opportunities. It's just too bad.

Ceri
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:55 PM
Justine was playing her B game that final, so was Sveta. If Justine had played like she did against Venus the scoreline would have been even more dominating. Justine's level of play was still higher overall in that match.

Shepster
Sep 10th, 2007, 12:58 PM
I think if Svetlana gets 75% first serves in, hits twice as many winners to UEs, executes on all her forays into the net and delivers on the big points she beats anyone on tour. Same for Justine, same for the Williamses, same for most players in the top 20. IF everything goes *perfectly* and they achieve this mythical "best game" they win.

Winning slams isn't about that though, it's about consistency and how you cope in pressure situations. It's not as if Justine played her best tennis winning this US Open either, she's choked away serving for a set more times than Carlos Rodriguez would like but it's how you deal with that that separates. Look at Djokovic last night, chokes serving for the set, loses the tiebreak - Henin doesn't do that, she puts it behind her, recovers and steamrolls on.

Back to Svetlana - she made a lot of UEs and on paper played nowhere near her best game but she was making UEs because of the pressure Henin was applying by saying "this is the standard I'm setting, you either don't reach that level and lose or you step up and then *maybe* you win". Sveta had chances to break in the second set but she didn't take them - thing is though, had she taken them that doesn't mean she wins the match, that just means then it's closer.

winone23
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:02 PM
Kuzzy is correct it was her match to lose!!!

cecilija
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:05 PM
Kuzzy is correct it was her match to lose!!!

:spit:

So Disrespectful
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:07 PM
Justine does tend to put her opponents under pressure early on the match, breaking them right at the start.

I don't think you can choose to break serve per se :lol:

Avid Merrion
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:07 PM
Svetlana: "I didn't play my best game, that's why i lost"

no shit Sherlock! :lol:

Wayn77
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:14 PM
She's sharp from the first ball.

Correct.
Henin is ready right from the start, something that gets overlooked. Justine tends to "bully" Sveta when they play: bringing her in, playing lots of flash shots early, lots of angles.

stickwitju(ju)
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:18 PM
The problem for Kuz: she didn't think she could win. She already accepted the fact that she'd be runner-up BEFORE the final.

Marshmallow
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:28 PM
I don't think you can choose to break serve per se :lol:

Like i said, sharp from the start, putting her opponents under pressure from the start. I've seen it all year, it's something she works on in every match. Even if her opponent is 40-15 up or something, she won't let it go, she will really go after it - and will try to put them under pressure from the start.

Most other players come out rusty, nervous, not warmed up - thinking that they'll work their way in. It's a compliment to her professionalism. Did she break early in all her matches at this tournament and wimbledon, and the FO AND before?

Talula
Sep 10th, 2007, 01:30 PM
Justine would have been nervous too. Any player in a Grand Slam final would be. Svetlana is making excuses. Justine is simply the best champion on the Tour right now - winning when it counts and making her own luck as all winners do.

RenaSlam.
Sep 10th, 2007, 02:11 PM
Well Sveta, maybe if you weren't scared shitless throughout the match, you could've played your best.

Thanks for giving us another awful final.

harloo
Sep 10th, 2007, 02:17 PM
Kuzzy has won a US Open final before so this time she has no excuse. The number two player in the world spraying balls like an amateur in the semis and the finals? She could of at least made Henin beat her instead of being scared.:o

Apoleb
Sep 10th, 2007, 02:23 PM
It's true. She didn't play her best. If she did, it would've been closer.

As expected, Justine did what was enough. If she was pushed more, she would've upped her level, no doubt about it. And actually that's what she did at key moments in the match where she took the leads.

I think even Venus commented on that, that Justine will do whatever is enough for her to win. So don't expect her to bring her best play except against the best players.

Justine would have been nervous too

Actually, Justine was EXTREMELY tense. This was probably the most tense easy victory I've ever seen. And to be honest she looked more nervous than Kuz. It was quite visible.

Donny
Sep 10th, 2007, 02:55 PM
I think if Svetlana gets 75% first serves in, hits twice as many winners to UEs, executes on all her forays into the net and delivers on the big points she beats anyone on tour. Same for Justine, same for the Williamses, same for most players in the top 20. IF everything goes *perfectly* and they achieve this mythical "best game" they win.


How often do 99% of players manage this "mythical" level? Do they EVER reach that level? Has Kuznetsova? Perhaps during the 2004 USO; I wouldn't know I didn't watch.

Point is, Henin, Serena, and Venus seem to be capable of reaching this "mythical" level. Serena did it in the AO final; she did it when she won four slams in a row. Venus did it at Wimbledon this year. Henin did it pretty much during the entire USO.

So it's not exactly mythical, is it?

There's a huge difference between expecting someone to play godlike tennis when they've done it before, and asking it of a, say, Kuznetsova.

treufreund
Sep 10th, 2007, 03:02 PM
svetlana did not play her best but honestly most of us ever play our BEST. even at her BEST she would still possibly lose to Justine. Kind of a sour grapes statement but I like Kuzy and it's not that bad what she said. But she does need to keep it real. Justine "at her best" > Sveta "at her best"

Kart
Sep 10th, 2007, 03:36 PM
Sveta is right, she did not play at her best.

Consider the way she played that time she won Miami.

I appreciate she's done little to reproduce that level for a long time but it does indicate what she's capable - and yes, if she'd played her best, she could well have won.

stefi62
Sep 10th, 2007, 03:39 PM
Sveta :o

I don't agree, she was not totally out of the game, Justine was just playing perfectly from the first point! There's no shame to being beaten by someone better that day... why do tennis players always have to find excuses.... Mary, I miss you even more at such moments! :kiss:

brent-o
Sep 10th, 2007, 04:06 PM
I think Kuzy's major fault in the final was being too tentative. I'm seen her absolutely rip forehands but when given a short ball in the final, she just kind of pushed it back to Justine. Not a good idea against Justine who's become so good at taking the ball on the rise on her forehand.

miffedmax
Sep 10th, 2007, 04:22 PM
Isn't Justine way up on their H2H?

She would have to play one of her better games to beat Justine. But Justine playing well will beat Sveta playing well every time.

I think Sveta will eventually add to her major championships one day and not be a one Slam wonder. Although it would help if she could play Lena D. in another final. :bigcry:

Shepster
Sep 10th, 2007, 04:36 PM
Point is, Henin, Serena, and Venus seem to be capable of reaching this "mythical" level. Serena did it in the AO final; she did it when she won four slams in a row. Venus did it at Wimbledon this year. Henin did it pretty much during the entire USO.

So it's not exactly mythical, is it?
Henin didn't do it at all during the US Open. First 3 matches were against qualifiers, Safina didn't turn up. She served 50% against Serena and only made +8 winners, messed up serving for the first set, hit more DFs than aces, 3/8 break points won, the list goes on. She played very well but she was not at her best. Same against Venus, under 60% serving, more DFs than aces, +7 winners, etc., etc. In the final screwed up serving for sets, under 60% serving, DFs up, +4 winners, etc. You think that's her best? :help:

You look at someone like Federer now and he only says he played his best in a couple of grand slam finals. Last night for example he was superior, was there when it counted (just like Justine) but it was nowhere near his "best match". Like Venus at Wimbledon, the Sharapova match was probably the best she could have served in terms of power (if not aces) but a/ it was not as impressive in my eyes as the Pierce match in 2005 (:worship:) and b/ she had SO MANY break point chances she did not take it was unbelievable. In the end it didn't matter at all but it was not what she can do at her best. Even at Wimbledon (in the second week) Venus was playing excellent tennis, the highest standard of anyone, but it was not her best. It was close to her best, but she has played and can play better than that.

The only one of the three you mentioned that is right near what I was talking about was Serena in Australia. It's the best she's played in at least 4 years if not longer. That's the point though, she's played 128 matches since 2004 and that's the example of her playing at her "best". Then you take into account the circumstances and it's clear she could not realistically have played any better, but it's a less than 1% shot which is why it comes around so seldomly.

It stems from competition, you only really produce your best when you have to. Henin didn't at this US Open because she set a standard (a very good one) and when Serena, Venus and Sveta couldn't deal with that standard they started making more UEs than errors. We'll never know what Henin's best was this week because nobody forced her to do better than the standard she set as they all were negative in the winner-UE ratio. Even at the French, Henin only hit 8 winners the whole final and won 6-1, 6-2 - semis she hit more than 2 times as many UEs to winners and won 6-2, 6-2 - against Serena 3 times as many UEs to winners and won 6-4, 6-3 - we haven't seen the best of Henin this year and she's won two of the three she entered.

So yeah, it's mythical. Serena did it out of nowhere at the Aussie, that's the point. Venus was excellent at Wimbledon and the best player there, but it was not *her* best and Justine, well, she hasn't had to do her best this year by any stretch of the imagination.

partbrit
Sep 10th, 2007, 05:10 PM
Sveta did not play very smart. She had so many opportunities to move forward and get something done, but instead, she stayed back and got whacked. I don't know if she would won had she played smarter, but she at least would have had a chance.

drake3781
Sep 10th, 2007, 05:17 PM
Is that quote in the thread title an actual quote of Svetlana? If so, I don't see it in the pasted text of her statement. If not, I object to making up statements and putting them in quotes as if somebody actually said that.

It does seem a good summary of her statement, but should not be in quotes unless those were her words.

Chrisi
Sep 10th, 2007, 05:17 PM
Of course, she didn't play her best but I think it's good that she's so honest!

DA FOREHAND
Sep 10th, 2007, 06:20 PM
I honestly don't think there's much she could've done out there. At her best Justine would have still beaten her. Justine owns her on the tennis court. She did have many chances out there but she was just way too tentative and didn't take advantage of her opportunities. It's just too bad.

Sveta beat Justine on clay this year. So yes I do think she can beat her on a hard court.

freeandlonely
Sep 10th, 2007, 06:20 PM
Justine did not play her best as well.

moby
Sep 10th, 2007, 06:43 PM
Sveta beat Justine on clay this year. So yes I do think she can beat her on a hard court.Actually, Sveta's best chance against Justine is on slow courts (clay or Middle Eastern hard courts), where she has time to set up her massive swings, and where her heavy topspin can trouble Justine. This fact bears itself out in their meetings: the only two times she's beaten Justine were on slow courts; the only three times she's taken the match to a final set in a losing effort were on slow courts.

Every time they've played on a faster court (grass or the US Decoturf), Sveta's been blown away.

supergrunt
Sep 10th, 2007, 07:02 PM
thank god it wasn't Serena.... who said it

Apoleb
Sep 10th, 2007, 07:59 PM
Actually, Sveta's best chance against Justine is on slow courts (clay or Middle Eastern hard courts), where she has time to set up her massive swings, and where her heavy topspin can trouble Justine. This fact bears itself out in their meetings: the only two times she's beaten Justine were on slow courts; the only three times she's taken the match to a final set in a losing effort were on slow courts.

Every time they've played on a faster court (grass or the US Decoturf), Sveta's been blown away.

Agreed. Very heavy top spin, especially on the backhand side, is the only thing that could throw Justine out of the court for the moment. I don't think anyone successfully does that except Kuz. Maybe Mauresmo, but she can do it only from her backhand side, and it isn't always consistent.

Bruno71
Sep 10th, 2007, 08:11 PM
Is that quote in the thread title an actual quote of Svetlana? If so, I don't see it in the pasted text of her statement. If not, I object to making up statements and putting them in quotes as if somebody actually said that.

It does seem a good summary of her statement, but should not be in quotes unless those were her words.

This is what she said in full:


When she plays her best game I have to play my best game. I didn't play my best game so that's why I lost. And I had so many opportunities ‑‑ not so many, but with these players like her, so high level, you just have few opportunities, not many. If you don't use them, there's no way I gonna win. I had so many of them. I felt I just didn't move to the ball well enough because I was pretty tight.


I think what she probably means is that she needs to play her best game to have a chance of beating Justine.

All this talk about "best" and "not best." I think it all stems from how the individual approaches the match that day (i.e. nerves, confidence, injuries), and what level the opponent across the net is at. I'd find it virtually impossible to think Justine could play her very best against Sveta for an entire match, only because Sveta is that good a player. However, Justine may play her best tennis against Sveta when Sveta's level is considerably low, like it was in the last set of the Dubai semifinal. It's rare to see it for an entire match though.

Wannabeknowitall
Sep 10th, 2007, 08:21 PM
Kuzzie hasn't played her best game in 6 months.
She's won one tournament and only because it was give to her.

She's number two in the world and she can barely keep the ball in the court at times.

Can somsone tell me what is wrong with this picture?

supergrunt
Sep 11th, 2007, 01:36 AM
I mean if Venus or Serena would've said it,. it would have been acceptable because neither of them played anywhere near their best.. but Kuznetsova.. I think it had a lot to do with Justine :shrug: :help:

Aaron.
Sep 11th, 2007, 02:45 AM
no shit Sherlock! :lol: :haha:

drake3781
Sep 11th, 2007, 03:27 AM
This is what she said in full:



I think what she probably means is that she needs to play her best game to have a chance of beating Justine.

All this talk about "best" and "not best." I think it all stems from how the individual approaches the match that day (i.e. nerves, confidence, injuries), and what level the opponent across the net is at. I'd find it virtually impossible to think Justine could play her very best against Sveta for an entire match, only because Sveta is that good a player. However, Justine may play her best tennis against Sveta when Sveta's level is considerably low, like it was in the last set of the Dubai semifinal. It's rare to see it for an entire match though.

Thanks! It was a valid quote, for once. ;)

go hingis
Sep 11th, 2007, 04:24 AM
I don't think she could have done much, Just like Elena playing against Sveta in the 2004 final. Apparently Roger spoke with Elena after the match and said "nobody could have beat her today"

Jenny.C.Fan
Sep 11th, 2007, 08:57 AM
Sveta was unlucky, she missed a load of chances, 0/6 bp's, about 6 games went to deuce and she lost them all, on another day she would've won that 2nd set and possibly the match, so it was dissapointing she couldn't quite reach her highest level.

mankind
Sep 11th, 2007, 09:16 AM
I think it was closer than the score indicates because they both played pretty poorly. Henin just came up with better play when it counted. And it was still a thrashing.

mankind
Sep 11th, 2007, 09:17 AM
I mean if Venus or Serena would've said it,. it would have been acceptable because neither of them played anywhere near their best.. but Kuznetsova.. I think it had a lot to do with Justine :shrug: :help:

I think Justine had a lot to do with the Williamses losses as well.

chris whiteside
Sep 11th, 2007, 09:19 AM
Svetlana at her best is unquestionably a match for anyone.

However I can hardly remember the last time she was anywhere top form even though she is now #2.

Calypso
Sep 11th, 2007, 10:54 AM
Justine's best >>>> Svetlana's best.

If Kuzzie was playing better, I believe Justine would have raised her game also.

pav
Sep 11th, 2007, 11:11 AM
Sveta doesn't come off in the best light as a winner or a loser, if she drops a set and then goes on to win it is only her doing, her game was way off and once she gets her act together, not a problem sort of statement. She gave an after match in this vien once more at this tournament,after the Chaky match I think, now after getting her ass kicked by a better player she is at it again. Serena attracts criticism like flies to a barbie,so it wouldn't hurt the Sveta to hear a little buzzing.

laurie
Sep 11th, 2007, 12:14 PM
I think Svetlana can learn from Justinbe in a few areas. Not least Justine's will to win. I would say right now Svetlana has an excellent will to fight but quite hasn't figured out that extra will to win against Justine or Venus in the Wimbledon quarterfinal. in both matches she had opportunities.

I would also say Henin again shows how a good player with a one hand backhand always has an advantage over a two hander. Even though Svetlana has all the shots, like most two handers, she plays in the comfort zone of hitting two hand backhands all the time. When Henin keeps the ball low, Svetlana will respond by hitting up, that's where the errors come. Players are not prepared to trade slice to slice to neutralise the rally, so Justine and Roger in the men have a distinct advantage allowing them to turn defence into attack.

Svetlana uses the slice backhand occasionally but I would like to see her use it more often as a tactic to change the course of the rally to her advantage. There are many ways to use the slice, at angles or short to draw the opponent into net, on the return of serve to attack the net by getting it deep.

I'm feeling pretty sad because I just heard on BBC world Service that Joe Zawinul died in an hospital in Vienna . He was 75 years old and was a legendary Jazz musician.

Marshmallow
Sep 12th, 2007, 08:22 PM
I have to say i'm impressed by the responses. People have been reasonable and compassionate. At one point i thought they'd more obnoxious posts about her ARROGANCE and DELUSIONS. Maybe if this was Svetlana K. Williams it'd be a different story.

But thanx you guys. I think teh match would have been closer had she not conceded that first game, and had she taken some of her opportunities. But a good result nonetheless, that i hope she can build on.

shrOOf
Sep 12th, 2007, 08:29 PM
no shit Sherlock! :lol:

:haha: :haha: