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tennisIlove09
Jun 3rd, 2003, 07:45 PM
I would think she'd feel better in Paris, with the crowd on her side.

While Serena played on hell of a match, Amelie had already lost when she walked on to the court.

barmaid
Jun 3rd, 2003, 07:51 PM
Sacre bleu! Amelie :sad: Looking at Amelie before the match..you could tell by her face she was a "basket case" of nerves :eek: All those worrisome frowning and furrowed brows :rolleyes: If you can't bring your best game in front of your home country and "feed" off the French supporters...instead of being "scared"... :o .you will never become a champion!! :confused:


barmaid :wavey:

John Inverdale
Jun 3rd, 2003, 07:54 PM
It's the same with Tim Henman at Wimbledon, and lleyton Hewitt in Australia.

The WHOLE country is wanting you to win, of course that puts pressure on you. Just because they're cheering for you doesn't mean a player takes that in a completely positive way. It may just remind them of the pressure.

The media focus on Amelie must've been intense, I see it with Tim henman. It will have been in her face for the whole of the past two weeks, that's a little difficult to forget while on court.

Rollo
Jun 3rd, 2003, 08:25 PM
Perfect answer John.

Amelie will learn to deal with it one day. It usually takes years though-and often that special win in a grand slam happens only after everyone writes you off as a loser. Ask Ann Jones or Virginia Wade, both Brits who won in years when expectations were low . When Wade won in 1977 it was her 16th try!

The same thing happened with Mary Pierce at the French in 2000. If Amelie hangs aroung long enough she'll bag a RG trophy, but I expect it will come later than sooner.

tennisIlove09
Jun 3rd, 2003, 08:25 PM
It's the same with Tim Henman at Wimbledon, and lleyton Hewitt in Australia.

The WHOLE country is wanting you to win, of course that puts pressure on you. Just because they're cheering for you doesn't mean a player takes that in a completely positive way. It may just remind them of the pressure.

The media focus on Amelie must've been intense, I see it with Tim henman. It will have been in her face for the whole of the past two weeks, that's a little difficult to forget while on court.

But the difference is, Henman has played well at Wimbledon. He's been to 4 or 5 semis, but he always loses to the better player. he's never lost, that I can remember, because of his nerves.

Kiswana
Jun 3rd, 2003, 08:30 PM
That's a very good analogy John Inverdale (Henman in Britain; Hewitt in Australia). Mauresmo was one of the favourites to win RG this year but as we all saw, she succumbed to the pressure and to Serena's dictatorial play. No offence to Pierce but if Halard and Tauziat had won RG or at least been a major contender for it in their prime (and repeatedly reached the latter rounds of RG), Mauresmo would feel much less pressure. The French have ambivalent feelings towards Pierce so they want the genuine article to win their tournament. Since she defeated Serena a few weeks ago, I thought Mauresmo was ready but it wasn't meant to be. I still think Mauresmo will win a Slam but it looks like it will happen at one of the other 3 majors. Paris, at this point in her career, makes her too nervous.

Cybelle Darkholme
Jun 3rd, 2003, 08:38 PM
It's the same with Tim Henman at Wimbledon, and lleyton Hewitt in Australia.

The WHOLE country is wanting you to win, of course that puts pressure on you. Just because they're cheering for you doesn't mean a player takes that in a completely positive way. It may just remind them of the pressure.

The media focus on Amelie must've been intense, I see it with Tim henman. It will have been in her face for the whole of the past two weeks, that's a little difficult to forget while on court.


Unlike in america where the people would rather cheer a foreigner than one of their own. Maybe its better that way because the americans sure dont feel pressure.

However I did notice that in the last us open in everyone of roddicks matches the crowd was TOTALLY for him even though he was not the underdog by any means. The crowds treat womens and mens tennis and the players very different. If serena had run around the court giving people high fives after a great point they would have booed her.

griffin
Jun 3rd, 2003, 08:42 PM
Amelie's nerves have always, always been her biggest liability, and the pressure she's felt from the French is insane (in '99, they painted her likeness on the side of a building near the stadium, and in 2001 they'd all bu handed her the trophy going in and she flamed out in the first round).

I think it would be hard for any player to cope with that, but for someone whose mental game is as fragile as Momo's...it's a recipe for disaster.

Linnie
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:26 PM
Amelie will learn to deal with it one day. It usually takes years though-and often that special win in a grand slam happens only after everyone writes you off as a loser. Ask Ann Jones or Virginia Wade, both Brits who won in years when expectations were low . When Wade won in 1977 it was her 16th try!
I was thinking about Ginny, too, and how sweet it was when she finally won Wimby. I just hope it doesn't take Amélie as long to win at RG! ;)

John Inverdale
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:30 PM
Unlike in america where the people would rather cheer a foreigner than one of their own. Maybe its better that way because the americans sure dont feel pressure.
They do say that because tennis isn't such a popular sport in America, there's less pressure. America has many sporting greats, and American wins the US Open practically every year. It's not as a big deal. An Australian hasn't won the Australian Open for a long time. Same with Wimbledon. Same with the French. I think it's a different attitude bred from a familiarity with winning.

And as mentioned, Amelie has been playing very well this year. There's no way the French media wouldn't have picked up on that and used it as a justification for their belief that Amelie could win. Same for Lleyton. It's the opposite for Tim. He doesn't play so well the rest of the year, but does at Wimbledon. But both situations provide the same result at the end. Media Hype. And intense public interest.

SueBarker
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:33 PM
John, that was actually a very sensible answer. Are you feeling alright? You avoided any sexist comments.

Anyway, back to the real issue, winning the French Open requires enormous mental strength as I would know. I won the French Open back in 1976 because I'm brilliant. And blonde.

Helen Lawson
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:37 PM
And because no one else in the Top 20 was playing the event in 1976.

I think Amelie would win without dropping a set if it was Alex, Raymond, and Tammy in her way.

harloo
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:38 PM
I think she was really feeling it out there. She was being touted as the lone French women to take RG. I feel kind of bad for her because of the immense pressure. She is one of the best on clay, but with Serena's type of play and the extra pressure it all blew up in her face. I guess some people cannot take the pressure.

Serena has had this type of pressure once everyone was expecting her to win the AO to complete the Serena slam, and she almost unraveled but she fought it off. IMO, Amelie has to get to a point where she can just fight it off otherwise she will never be able to win a slam.

Halardfan
Jun 3rd, 2003, 09:51 PM
I know its a strange thing to say...but I do think there are often national characteristics that come though in sport...

French sports sides and indeed sportspeople are more often than some other countries, of a mercurial type...with all the talent in the world, the talet of the best of the best, but a certain fragility.

Its one of the reasons Ive always been drawn to the French. I relish that unpredictability.

Of course its a broad brushstoke, of course it doesn't apply universally but bear with me...

Take the Rugby side, they have always had a definable French flavour, regardless of personel or vintage...abundant flair, moments of utter brilliance, but vulnerability too.

Its what makes them exciting.

Although (and it pains me to say it) Julie Halard was perhaps a less talented player than Amelie, a similar broad description would apply...very talented, can beat anyone in the right mood, but Oooooohhhh so vulnerable to nerves and pressure.

You can put Leconte in that bracket too, and indeed Noah, mercurial talents both. Who knew what you'd see on the given day.

While life maybe frustrating following such people, its never ever dull. :)

Zenith
Jun 3rd, 2003, 10:13 PM
That is why you should all give more props to the Williamses for excelling despite the fact that some people would love to see the back of them. Playing under pressure is easy, and to win a slam in that condition is even harder.

franny
Jun 3rd, 2003, 10:33 PM
its not just that the fans and people are cheering for her, they are also putting ALL their hopes on her. Put it this way, in her mind, she knows that if she loses, she would have dissapointed millions and millions of people and let down all these peopel adn when she walks down the streeet she will be known as the one that lost the match. Thats some pressure. Americans have less pressure @ the us open because there are so many americans that play at a high level of tennis here, so its really not that big of a deal.