View Full Version : Doubles today and in former times...

May 5th, 2003, 07:03 PM
Looking at the doubles draw of the German Open in Berlin I noticed that there are some (strange) new partnerships. I mean, we have Virginia Ruano-Pascual/Paola Suarez as No. 1 seed, they are well known but what comes then? :confused:

Have you ever looked at Kim Clijsters and thought she is a doubles specialist? She definitely is great in singles but she can play doubles as well. I just wouldn`t call her a doubles player. Do you understand what I mean?

Elena Dementiewa e. g. is No. 5 in doubles rankings at the moment. I personally consider her to be the typical singles player. It is strange to see her that high in the rankings in doubles.

I don`t want to offend anyone if I mentioned his/her favorite player. I only miss the time when we had real doubles specialists who played serve and volley and made doubles enjoyable to watch. I think of Gigi Fernandez/Natasha Zwerewa, Jana Novotna/Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario, Martina Hingis/Anna Kournikova, Meredith McGrath/Larisa Neiland, Lindsay Davenport/Natasha Zwerewa, Martina Hingis/Jana Novotna e. g.!

Lindsay, Novotna, Sanchez-Vicario, Hingis are respectively were great singles champions but they are/were able to play doubles.

Today it seems that doubles matches are won from the baseline. Many players who never go to the net in singles like Dementiewa, Sugiyama, Mandula are very succesful in doubles matches.

Only some teams stay together for the whole season. I think that is the fact why many seeded teams look strange at the first time. Many doubles specialists split up e. g. Lisa Raymond/Rennae Stubbs to find another partner in great Singles players like Lindsay or Elena Bowina.

It is like ChrisGermany said: Some doubles players seem to have accepted the fact of only four teams in LA and now try to have fun playing with different partners.

What do you think? Is the time of real doubles specialists over? Will we see more teams with a singles and a doubles specialist? How do you feel about that? :confused:

May 5th, 2003, 07:12 PM
Yes baseliners are the commen thing, or a baseliner and a net player, like Ruana Pascual and when Demetieva and Husarova where together.

May 5th, 2003, 08:16 PM
I imagine it's quite difficult to be a doubles specialist. ;) The prize money for doubles hasn't kept pace with the prize money for singles. It's fine if you are someone like my former partner who despite her many other faults is a good doubles player who can pretty much guarantee to get to the later stages of most tournaments, but if you were just starting out, being a doubles specialist wouldn't seem the way to make good money, get endorsements or become a well-respected player. Also, the draws for doubles are getting smaller and some lower tier tournaments don't even have a doubles competition anymore, so people would have to choose whether to play a high level tournament only in doubles or a lower level tournament only in singles, and most would choose to play singles.

I think people don't play serve-and-volley type doubles any more because people don't play serve-and-volley singles and it would be practically impossible to completely alter your game to suit doubles play and then change it back when you played singles. When Jana Novotna, Natasha Zvereva, etc, played doubles there were many more serve-and-volleyers in singles too and you could do well with that type of game.

I don't think there are necessarily more team changes today than there were in the past. Zvereva / Fernandez / Neiland / Novotna, etc, etc, all had huge falling outs with their partners that resulted in various team changes over the years. And there are some teams that stay together for years today, e.g. Krizan and Srebotnik, Black and Likhovtseva. Dementieva and Husarova played together for a few years and Rennae and I played for nearly 8 horrendous years, so it isn't the case that people change partners all the time.

IMO, the time of the real doubles specialist is over in the sense that there won't be so many people who will be content to play only doubles, and people playing more singles will necessarily lead to team changes because people will play singles in different tournaments. On the other hand, I think it's good that top singles players play doubles because it is good publicity for the doubles game, even though it can seem unfair to people who predominantly play doubles.

May 5th, 2003, 11:52 PM
You talk Shite

May 6th, 2003, 12:19 AM
You talk Shite

Cutting-edge critique there! :p