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Excelscior
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:10 PM
Interesting to hear the take of other publications tennis reporters, who seem to follow the sport more closely, and have their own/differing, more honest, daring opinions (though this reporter ultimately chose-Surprise, Serena Williams, and only analyzed 4 women) than more mainstream publications reporters. Lol.



Today at 1:30 PM
Comment

Your Official U.S. Open Preview

By Lindsay Sakraida

A storm is brewing in Flushing, and it's not Hurricane Irene. (Okay, it is also Hurricane Irene.) Both Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams will come to the U.S. Open Tennis Championships next week as dominant forces. But with heavyweights like Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, and Maria Sharapova proud champions themselves, crowds could be in store for some tumultuous battles. The tournament begins Monday, as long as Irene's collision with the eastern seaboard this weekend doesn't throw things into disarray. So, who will hoist that sparkling Tiffany trophy in a fortnight’s time?

THE WOMEN

Serena Williams. On the women's side, this preview could probably begin and end with Serena Williams. She came back from an eleven-month hiatus this year in phenomenal fashion, winning two back-to-back titles this summer. With Kim Clijsters unable to defend her win in Flushing, many believe the trophy is Serena’s for the taking. Williams's likely third-round opponent is the unlucky Victoria Azarenka, a fantastic player who left the tournament early last year when she collapsed on the ground from a concussion. Even though Azarenka will put up an entertaining fight, she's still due for a drubbing. Although Williams suffered an early exit at Wimbledon in July, the U.S. Open is in her crosshairs.

Maria Sharapova. Finally more consistent and competitive after shoulder surgery, Sharapova was deemed a shoo-in for Wimbledon … but then she folded to an inspiring young Czech, Petra Kvitova. In Los Angeles this summer, she was expected to give Williams a run for her money in a quarterfinal popcorn match … but then she visibly crumbled under the pressure. Sharapova's hard serve and wicked, aggressive ground strokes have both returned, but these weapons fail her under pressure. She's projected to meet Kvitova in the quarters, fellow Russian Vera Zvonareva
in the semis, and Williams in the final. But the way it’s been going lately in the clutch, there's little chance for a championship title in New York.

Petra Kvitova. If you don't already recognize this name, learn it. Despite winning Wimbledon this year and overpowering Sharapova, many still aren't familiar with Kvitova. It's a shame, too, because unlike Francesca Schiavone and Li Na — who won surprise titles in Paris and Melbourne in the past two years — Kvitova could very well become a repeat Slam winner. She's a powerful ball striker with a crippling lefty serve that keeps her opponents off balance. And she's only 21; her skills are only going to get stronger and more refined. Hot off her Wimbledon run, Kvitova's confidence and hard-court-tailored game should take her far in Flushing.

Caroline Wozniacki. Although she returns to the Open as the top seed, Wozniacki still hasn't inspired confidence in her critics. And perhaps carrying around the number one ranking (without a Slam to her name) is finally taking its toll on her mental game. Belittled as a "pusher" — someone who's not particularly dominating or skillful but wins by frustrating an opponent by always getting the ball back — the Dane was reduced to tears after her loss in Cincinnati to Christina McHale, a relative unknown. Soon after, Wozniacki fired her father as her coach and has been evasive about his replacement. Either way, she'll come to New York a shaken player with a tenuous coaching arrangement, projected to face a rejuvenated Williams in the semifinals.

PREDICTIONS

Men: Novak Djokovic
Women: Serena Williams

Lindsay Sakraida will be covering the U.S. Open for The Sports Section throughout the next two weeks.

Ryan
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:14 PM
No new thoughts really, but a nice succinct analysis anyway. Not sure if those are her SF picks (actually, Masha and Petra could play in QF), but not bad choices if they are.

joão.
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:15 PM
Nice preview

Break My Rapture
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:17 PM
I facepalmed at some of the things I read there, TBH. :lol:

Excelscior
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:18 PM
No new thoughts really, but a nice succinct analysis anyway. Not sure if those are her SF picks (actually, Masha and Petra could play in QF), but not bad choices if they are.

Hey Ryan.

I'm not sure if it's her quarter picks. I just think it's her opinion on the 4 people she likes the most (or wanted to talk about the most).

I really don't like reading many online/Magazine picks, cause it's the same ole same ole. Most of them are 6 months behind the times that we see/notice usually, I think. But the reason why I posted this one, is because she seemed more honest and daring (unlike most reporters), though still responsible and cautious (to add legitimacy) and overall perspective.

I only wish she reviewed more people. But that adds to her honesty, cause most reporters can't properly evaluate 8-16 women. Now that's really not a big deal to me, but some of these reporters act like they actually know what they're talking about, and usually piss off other peoples fans in their flawed analysis. Lol.

I just thought I'd share it, after reading so many others here.

backhandsmash
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:24 PM
Today at 1:30 PM
Comment

Your Official U.S. Open Preview

By Lindsay Sakraida

A storm is brewing in Flushing, and it's not Hurricane Irene. (Okay, it is also Hurricane Irene.) Both Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams will come to the U.S. Open Tennis Championships next week as dominant forces. But with heavyweights like Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, and Maria Sharapova proud champions themselves, crowds could be in store for some tumultuous battles. The tournament begins Monday, as long as Irene's collision with the eastern seaboard this weekend doesn't throw things into disarray. So, who will hoist that sparkling Tiffany trophy in a fortnight’s time?

THE WOMEN


Maria Sharapova. Finally more consistent and competitive after shoulder surgery, Sharapova was deemed a shoo-in for Wimbledon … but then she folded to an inspiring young Czech, Petra Kvitova.


Really? I'm confused.

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:25 PM
Is any one else surprised no one has picked Sharapova yet, but a CBS reporter has picked Caro over Maria in the final?

I'd like to see what the tennis publications would pick

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:28 PM
Really? I'm confused.
Do you disagree that Maria was thought of as shoo-in at Wimby?

Excelscior
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:29 PM
Really? I'm confused.

Hey! I've got into that many times, and I agree with you whole heartedly, so I'll leave that one alone for now. But I know exactly what you mean. Lol.

We're all not going to agree with everything a reporter says. Lol.

backhandsmash
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:39 PM
Do you disagree that Maria was thought of as shoo-in at Wimby?

Well, the bookies probably favoured her. I still thank them for that.

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:46 PM
Well, the bookies probably favoured her. I still thank them for that.
She was also picked by US commentators on ESPN and NBC to win it.

backhandsmash
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:51 PM
She was also picked by US commentators on ESPN and NBC to win it.

Okay. Was that pre-tournament or just before the final?

tennisbum79
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:56 PM
Okay. Was that pre-tournament or just before the final?
Maria Nav. of Tennich Channel picked before the tournament started.
I believe Chris Fowler of ESPN picked her as well.

Mary Carillo also picked Maria

Most of the decision by US commentator was based on the fact Venus and Serena were not in form, which is logical to me.
She was also the only other Wimbledon champion besides Venus and Serena.

Excelscior
Aug 26th, 2011, 06:58 PM
Do you disagree that Maria was thought of as shoo-in at Wimby?

OK.

I'll help answer this question, though I was trying to avoid it, since your still asking the other poster. I didn't want to get into a Petra vs Masha discussion.

I think if you ask Sharapova fans was she the favorite (or shoo in as you asked), they would say yes. But she really wasn't a shoo in at all.

By the day of the semi-finals, Sharapova and Kvitova virtually had identical odds to win Wimbledon (Sharapova was about 3.3:1 and Kvitova was 3.71:1) for a virtual unknown to outsiders like Kvitova, compared to someone as famous as Sharapova, that was outstanding for Kvitova.

I can even show you odds/web pages, from legitimate bettors, that had Petra ahead of Sharapova, even during Wimbledon, before the semifinals. So perception was never actually reality.

Regarding ESPN (PS: It was Brad Gilbert & Ravi Uhba that picked Kvitova as well), if you listened to their broadcasters the day before the match, they all conceded that Kvitova was the better player ("if it was based on talent and ability Sharapova would lose" MJF, and Darren Cahill said), and only gave Maria a chance (if at all) because of her experience. They threw out all that Pre-tournament perception once they saw Kvitova in the semifinal. Same with NBC/John McEnroe.

John McEnroe had picked Kvitova to make the finals all along, and said he "stuck with Sharapova to win" cause that was his "original pick".

Sam Smith and Martina Navratilova picked Petra before the tournament even started, on the BBC and the Tennis Channel.

The media made it seem like a big upset, after Petra won, cause it was a nice story (Cause Maria was the more famous, well known one, and Petra wasn't on ESPN broadcast until the semi-finals; how could the general media big her up, after not showing her)? But people who followed the sport, and certainly the betting public didn't feel that way.

I hope that helps/explains (and I didn't want to be the one). Lol.

Beny
Aug 26th, 2011, 07:03 PM
THE WOMEN

Serena Williams. On the women's side, this preview could probably begin and end with Serena Williams. She came back from an eleven-month hiatus this year in phenomenal fashion, winning two back-to-back titles this summer. With Kim Clijsters unable to defend her win in Flushing, many believe the trophy is Serena’s for the taking. Williams's likely third-round opponent is the unlucky Victoria Azarenka, a fantastic player who left the tournament early last year when she collapsed on the ground from a concussion. Even though Azarenka will put up an entertaining fight, she's still due for a drubbing. Although Williams suffered an early exit at Wimbledon in July, the U.S. Open is in her crosshairs.

Maria Sharapova. Finally more consistent and competitive after shoulder surgery, Sharapova was deemed a shoo-in for Wimbledon … but then she folded to an inspiring young Czech, Petra Kvitova. In Los Angeles this summer, she was expected to give Williams a run for her money in a quarterfinal popcorn match … but then she visibly crumbled under the pressure. Sharapova's hard serve and wicked, aggressive ground strokes have both returned, but these weapons fail her under pressure. She's projected to meet Kvitova in the quarters, fellow Russian Vera Zvonareva
in the semis, and Williams in the final. But the way it’s been going lately in the clutch, there's little chance for a championship title in New York.

Petra Kvitova. If you don't already recognize this name, learn it. Despite winning Wimbledon this year and overpowering Sharapova, many still aren't familiar with Kvitova. It's a shame, too, because unlike Francesca Schiavone and Li Na — who won surprise titles in Paris and Melbourne in the past two years — Kvitova could very well become a repeat Slam winner. She's a powerful ball striker with a crippling lefty serve that keeps her opponents off balance. And she's only 21; her skills are only going to get stronger and more refined. Hot off her Wimbledon run, Kvitova's confidence and hard-court-tailored game should take her far in Flushing.

Caroline Wozniacki. Although she returns to the Open as the top seed, Wozniacki still hasn't inspired confidence in her critics. And perhaps carrying around the number one ranking (without a Slam to her name) is finally taking its toll on her mental game. Belittled as a "pusher" — someone who's not particularly dominating or skillful but wins by frustrating an opponent by always getting the ball back — the Dane was reduced to tears after her loss in Cincinnati to Christina McHale, a relative unknown. Soon after, Wozniacki fired her father as her coach and has been evasive about his replacement. Either way, she'll come to New York a shaken player with a tenuous coaching arrangement, projected to face a rejuvenated Williams in the semifinals.

PREDICTIONS

Men: Novak Djokovic
Women: Serena Williams

Lindsay Sakraida will be covering the U.S. Open for The Sports Section throughout the next two weeks.

Li didnt win Melbourne :help: Both won RG

Excelscior
Aug 26th, 2011, 07:11 PM
Li didnt win Melbourne :help: Both won RG

Funny. Another Peter Bodo. Lol.

Good Eye. I'm sure it was a typo/editing miss (like we all did).

smarties
Aug 26th, 2011, 09:56 PM
:yawn: