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jenny161185
Jun 4th, 2003, 06:29 PM
After Sorenstam, could Serena shine on men's tour?

From:Reuters
Wednesday, 4th June, 2003




By Robert Woodward

LONDON, June 4 (Reuters) - Five years ago, Serena Williams and her elder sister Venus walked into the ATP office at the Australian Open and challenged the men's tour to a one-set showdown.

Karsten Braasch, a German ranked 203 in the world, was in the office at the time and took up the challenge. A few days later he beat Serena 6-1 and Venus 6-2.

Following golfer Annika Sorenstam's creditable performance last month in a men's PGA event, the question arises - how would world number one Serena fare against a man now?

She is by a country mile the best player in women's tennis and also the tour's finest athlete.

But unlike Sorenstam, she would have to test her physical prowess much more directly against a man and that would leave her at a huge disadvantage.

Williams's game is built on power, but you do not win four consecutive grand slam titles through strength alone.

The 21-year-old's shot placement and construction of points has developed markedly over the past 18 months and her on-court concentration has also improved.

Indeed, the American's 6-1 6-2 destruction of Amelie Mauresmo at the French Open on Tuesday may well have set a new benchmark in women's tennis.

Against one of the hardest hitters on the tour, Serena was simply irresistible. Ignoring the patriotic French crowd with a look of almost murderous intent, she blew Mauresmo away.

If she were to play a man, the slow clay of Roland Garros would probably offer Williams her best hope. Not a natural volleyer, she could sit on the baseline and work for her points.

But she would still have experienced nothing like the relentless ferocity of the rallies which make up the men's game.

While very few women can give Serena a full-blooded rally, such exchanges are bread and butter on the ATP tour. Male professionals also move faster and can hit harder on the run than any woman.

Serena, then 16, noticed the disparity against Braasch.

"I didn't know it would be that hard," she said. "I hit shots that would have been winners on the WTA Tour and he got to them easily."


GAP NARROWED

In 1998, Braasch said he had served at only 50 percent of his potential against the Williams sisters and this is one area where Serena has undoubtedly narrowed the gap with the men.

On Tuesday her fastest serve was 185 kph compared with Guillermo Coria's 188, while the average speed of her first serve was 163 kph compared with Coria's 152.

But it would be the men's return of serve which would shake Serena -- in men's tennis it is much more of a weapon than in the women's game.

Psychologically she would also be at a disadvantage. Men's matches are rarely played at anything less than full throttle and the pressure of having to concentrate on every shot is not often experienced by Williams.

She has not lost a set at the French Open and has rarely conceded more than one or two games a set so far.

But if she played one set on clay against a player like Braasch, ranked below 200 in the men's world, would she be in with a chance?

There's only one way to find out.

Copyright (2002) Reuters. Click for Restrictions

miranda_lou
Jun 4th, 2003, 06:37 PM
Oh, please!!! When are these media people going to stop this nonsense? :mad: It's ridiculous.

Coria is smaller than Serena and barely serves harder than she does but he would wipe the court with her. Sames goes for the #200 mens' player and the top college player. :o

Boys and girls are DIFFERENT. When are people going to learn that? :bounce:

Besides that, playing golf and playing tennis are two different things. Annika didn't have to hit the golf ball back to an opponent. Plus, the girl didn't even make the cut. :rolleyes: What did she accomplish besides getting higher ratings for NBC and the Colonial?

WtaTour4Ever
Jun 4th, 2003, 06:40 PM
Wow ...when are they going to let it go.....

Cybelle Darkholme
Jun 4th, 2003, 07:06 PM
its funny how he points out all the ways shes going to lose and then say theres only one way to find out. please they both already played a man and got spanked. we found out already. Let someone else take a turn finding out like kim or justine they are the mistress' of clay.

Sanneriet
Jun 4th, 2003, 07:07 PM
Thank goodness Serena has more sense.

GoDominique
Jun 4th, 2003, 07:19 PM
"But if she played one set on clay against a player like Braasch, ranked below 200 in the men's world,"


I'm sick of this. They all act as if Karsten Braasch was just some obscure player never to reach the top 100 or anything. :(
HELLO ? He has been ranked no. 38, I'm sure he's the best chain-smoking player ever. ;) Just watch how he gives Pete Sampras a serious battle at Wimbledon 1995 and you will see that he is GOOD.
So it was just OBVIOUS that he would thrash some inexperienced teenage girls. Nowadays Serena is much better, so let her play against a "real" top 300-player (someone who just ISN'T better than that) and we will see.

But a re-match against Braasch would be fun too. He's now 36 but still plays German league tennis. That could definitely be fun. ;)

barmaid
Jun 4th, 2003, 08:06 PM
I just finished watching the men's semi's from RG...it did take 7 hours to finish (the both matches went 5 sets apiece)...not only would the Williams' sisters need an ambulance waiting for them. :rolleyes: ...but they'd have to have a "Hearse" for Venus. :sad: ..no, they (the women) have neither the stamina or the physical power to play the men. :( ....leave it alone!! :fiery:


barmaid :wavey:

jenny161185
Jun 4th, 2003, 10:34 PM
lol at barmaid and her ambulance I agree

propi
Jun 4th, 2003, 10:54 PM
I'm sorry, this is not darts nor pool it's tennis, Coria spanked Agassi's ass

Lisbeth
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:58 AM
Sorenstam didn't exactly "shine" herself so it's a dumb title as well as a dumb article.

Thanks for posting though!

Greenout
Jun 5th, 2003, 02:02 AM
Golf isn't as physical of a sport as tennis.
Some may even say that golf isn't even a
sport it; it's a game.



How can you even compare a swimmer or
a cross country skier to a golfer?.

No female tennis star needs to lower themselves
in a cheap publicity stunt for a journeyman ATP
who can't cut it by beating men in his own league.

Doc
Jun 5th, 2003, 02:07 AM
Patty Schneider played a male Regional level player this December in Switzerland. Patty won!

Lisbeth
Jun 5th, 2003, 02:29 AM
That's interesting but I don't think it really affects whether a top WTA player could beat an ATP player (unless this regional player really ought to be on the ATP!).

Jakeev
Jun 5th, 2003, 02:39 AM
Oh, please!!! When are these media people going to stop this nonsense? :mad: It's ridiculous.

Coria is smaller than Serena and barely serves harder than she does but he would wipe the court with her. Sames goes for the #200 mens' player and the top college player. :o

Boys and girls are DIFFERENT. When are people going to learn that? :bounce:

Besides that, playing golf and playing tennis are two different things. Annika didn't have to hit the golf ball back to an opponent. Plus, the girl didn't even make the cut. :rolleyes: What did she accomplish besides getting higher ratings for NBC and the Colonial?

Yes boys and girls are different. But you forget that with each generation, girls are getting bigger, taller and stronger. Can you imagine what a girl like Serena will be like in 2020?

Don't discount women out yet. There may yet be a time in the future when you just might see women competing with men.

BigTennisFan
Jun 5th, 2003, 02:47 AM
Will this silliness ever cease? Jeeez!

1jackson2001
Jun 5th, 2003, 03:31 AM
The dead horse gets beaten once again! :D :rolleyes:

TheBoiledEgg
Jun 5th, 2003, 03:34 AM
Yes boys and girls are different. But you forget that with each generation, girls are getting bigger, taller and stronger. Can you imagine what a girl like Serena will be like in 2020?

Don't discount women out yet. There may yet be a time in the future when you just might see women competing with men.

So men are going to get smaller ??

SerialKiller#69
Jun 6th, 2003, 09:41 AM
I don't know if everyone has heard about this but during a commentary by Vijay Amritraj a long time ago, he talked about Guillermo Canas who according to him was hanging out at an ATP office when one of the sisters invited Canas to play singles. Vijay said Serena lost 6-1 6-2 and Venus played a bit better. He was laughing about it like it was a joke.

Messenger
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:19 AM
And people said Patty Schnyder wouldn't win a game.

SerialKiller#69
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:26 AM
by the way it was on clay.

Jakeev
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:30 AM
So men are going to get smaller ??

I think men are peaking physically to be honest with you BoiledEgg. Although men are getting taller each generation, I don't think they are necessarily getting that much bigger or stronger.

But the fact is, at least in the States, girls are becoming exactly what I described.

Heck I have a friend who's younger sister is friggen 13 and she is 5-11, and gasp, wears a men's size 10 shoe.

And Brittany herself (the 13-year old) had told me there are quite a few girls that are similar to her.

It's happening before our eyes folks..........

TheBoiledEgg
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:35 AM
doesn't matter how BIG they are, the men will always be that much faster/stronger

No Top woman would even win a rd in a mens Futures event. You just got to look at the hitting partners the woman have with them on court, they can do things to the ball thats beyond the women in hitting, and those guys aren't good enough to be even playing or given up cos they can't hack it.

Flatstat
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:54 AM
Serena has enough to deal with on the Womens tour. 3 losses from the last 3 events suggest she isn't exactly dominating anymore. Saying that, she is still the number 1, just not as clearly or convincingly as 6 months ago. :)

gopher
Jun 6th, 2003, 10:58 AM
being a ballboy maybe ?