View Full Version : There are only THREE groups of Slam contenders

Mar 30th, 2002, 09:27 PM
After three months of good and bad tennis on the WTA tour, it has become very apparent that there are only six Grand Slam contenders, in three different groups.

GROUP I (the best players on tour)

Serena Williams
Jennifer Capriati

Honestly, no one has had a better year than Capriati, and no one is better than Serena. For a while now I've said Serena is the better sister (better ground strokes, better serve, more touch, better return) but was always told to look at the head-to-head, the Slam titles, etc. Serena is just too strong, too fast, and lately, too consistent to be beaten. Maybe on clay, on a bad day, someone like Martina or Jennifer can beat her, but in her current form, she could dominate. As for Jennifer, she is a better fighter than anyone on tour, and although she has losing records to most players (Venus, Lindsay, Martina), she is without a doubt the second best right now and the best this year overall.

Group II (players who should win a Slam on their surface)

Martina Hingis
Venus Williams

Martina is having the best year as far as points are concerned, and Venus is having the best year as far as titles are concerned. Martina is the better player (IMO), and I think Venus' one-dimensional game is catching up to her. Similarly, Martina's lack of power has already caught up to her (three years and counting). Both of these players are usually considered the favorite heading in to matches, and share the best rivalry. But again, I see both of them losing to Capriati and Serena unless Martina plays them on clay and Venus on grass.

Group III (Slam threats, not favorites)

Monica Seles
Kim Clijsters

Monica Seles hits it harder than anyone except Lindsay Davenport, and Kim Clijsters hits it harder than anyone except...Monica Seles and Lindsay Davenport. Monica showed against Venus and Capriati this year that she hits it hard, flat, and pinpoint, and can beat any player on any day. Kim is a future number 1 IMO, and runs faster than anyone, but is too explosive and erratic (like the old Serena) on her shots. Once she gets some consistence, watch for Kim, the best "raw" talent, to win some Slams.

There you have it. Anyone outside of these six players is just not a Slam contenders IMO. Serena is the best right now, Jen is close behind, Martina and Venus are favorites on clay and grass, and Monica and Kim are the x-factors. Thoughts?

Mar 30th, 2002, 10:50 PM
I can't disagree with anyone who has such a high opinion of Kim although I might put Venus in group 1 instead of 2!!

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:33 AM
I would normally put Venus in Group 1, but Serena and Jen are just playing too well at the moment.

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:41 AM
Which will Lindsay fit into when she gets back on to the tour, or will we have to wait to see if she gets back to the Lindsay we know and love?

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:43 AM
Hmmm, Lindsay might go in group 2 or 3. But the groups would most likely change depending on how good a year the player is having.

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:51 AM
I guess This part of the year isn't Venus' best season... but once she gets into the Wimbledon & the U.S hard courts season, she'll probably show us all who's in the 'Group 1'...


Mar 31st, 2002, 02:03 AM
At the moment those groups are spot on but i've got the feeling they could be changing pretty soon :)

Williams Rulez
Mar 31st, 2002, 02:09 AM
Originally posted by Grice
I guess This part of the year isn't Venus' best season... but once she gets into the Wimbledon & the U.S hard courts season, she'll probably show us all who's in the 'Group 1'...


I couldn't agree more... since when has Venus done well in the beginning of the year? ;)

Mar 31st, 2002, 02:14 AM
Not usually. But I'm positive that Venus will do much better come Wimbledon time. (althoguh I hope she wont:()

Mar 31st, 2002, 03:24 AM
I'm not ready to count out Venus "Ms. Summer Breeze" Williams. I can see both Williams sisters trading that #1 back and forth for a while. Then they will only meet in finals :D

Ms. Lively
Mar 31st, 2002, 04:00 AM
Anything can happen at the slams. Who predicted that iva majoli would win in Roland Garros 1997, serena williams in US Open 1999, or jennifer capriati in Australian Open 2001? The slams are very unpredictable events. That's what makes them fun to watch.

Mar 31st, 2002, 06:36 AM
You people are so Crazy.. Venus had one bad match this year and she is suddenly write off :):):):):):)

I know, and Everyone one knows that if it wasn't Serena across the net on thursday it would be Venus holding up the trophy today.

Venus 5-1 agains Serena.
Venus 4-0 against capribrati

Enough Said...

Mar 31st, 2002, 07:16 AM
Since when was Venus' game one dimensional?? :fiery:

Relax, she only had one bad tournament. If you want to see one dimensional take a look at Jen's game...

Mar 31st, 2002, 08:41 AM
Venus is definitely part of the groupI. HELLO!!!!!!!!!!!How couldn't she be when she's won 4 of the last 7 GS, and has a winning record againts both players you call the best ones??? Something got be wrong somewhere!!!!!!! RE-DO YOUR GROUPS !!!!

I agree with having Hingis in a 2d group though......she still is very dangerous but hasn't won a GS in more than 3 years now and has lost to Serena, Venus and JCap the last times they faced each other!!!!!!!!:bounce:

Mar 31st, 2002, 08:47 AM
Venus in Group 2? ROTFLMAO!!!!!!
Venus is ABOVE Group 1

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:26 PM
Group 1 - Main Contenders. Are playing fantastic tennis. Have all won slams before. Venus and Jen 7/7. All on their day can beat anybody.


Group 2 - Consistently good performers on their surface on their day could win a slam. Also have the experiance of winning a slam before.


Group 3 - Young Pretenders. All have beaten the top players on big ocassions, and have had big time experiance. If one of the top players is off could cause an upset.

Elena D

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:42 PM
I would say Jennifer and Venus are the two automatics for your group 1. I think Serena's going to be there and clearly can beat anyone but she doesn't have the Slam titles to be automatic in there. Of course 2002 could be her year. Looks like it right now.
Not a Hingis fan but I would never rule her out.
As for the outside bets I don't think Mauresmo is a regular slam threat but she could just be on fire for one event at least and take it. She's awfully hard to stop once she gets going.

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:43 PM
Group 3 - Young Pretenders. All have beaten the top players on big ocassions, and have had big time experiance. If one of the top players is off could cause an upset.

Elena D

I agree with your other groups, but definately not this one.

Elena D was demolished by Henin in Aus, who was in turn demolished by Kim, so I'd rule out those two. Maybe not Justine on grass... but she's having quite a bad year.

Daniela - well, good showing at IW, obviously, but her quick exit at Miami would say there's a little longer to wait for her to reach group 3.

I would put Mauresmo in group 3 for clay, if she can control her nerves. Which is unlikely.

Tatiana Panova
Mar 31st, 2002, 12:47 PM
I agree but I think Lindsay might have something to say about this when she returns. She can still kick everyone's butt!:cool:

Mar 31st, 2002, 12:54 PM
Rock, There's no denying you have accurately put the right gals in the proper division:D Serena has shown the best dominance of any of the players so far! Jen is there for her comeback victory over Marti at the AO and for her usual "gutsy" performance against anybody....afterall, she had that tough match over Monica to get to Serena so concurrance there as well. Now, all of us Martina fans have been looking for her to #1..Get over that mental weakness she seems to have going into the final set..she had it at AO, against Serena at Scotsdale, against Huntchova at IW and again Serena at Nasdaq.....the patiently waiting fans are running OUT of patience (and I'm sure Martina after three years of NADA is as well) but does she actually have the tools to overcome her present situation:rolleyes: who knows:confused: time will tell, we can only hope!!:kiss: Venus although ranked #2 has not been playing well enough to be there....had some real wildness exhibited at Nasdaq...never did play in any of her matches up to her capabilities...so she's a wait and see game also-;) And as far as Kim, Monica, Justine and whomever else you want to put there....Monica has shown more "grit" than the others, Justine has really been showing disappointing tennis this year and I think Kim will improve her game, afterall she was injured so I expect a regroup of sorts.....but they have a lot to prove and haven't made any inroads so far!!:confused: So the next period before RG should be an exciting time....with everybody battling for position going into the next Grand Slam...Good luck! Maybe some new talent will crop into the mix as well.......the more the merrier:D !!


Mar 31st, 2002, 01:10 PM
I agree about Mauresmo VBN. I'll edit my post!

Justine and Kim have reached Grand Slam finals

Dementieva has got to the semi of the US Open and has had wins over:
Hingis, Davenport, Venus

Daniela has beaten Hingis, has won a tier one event, and could cause an upset. Im not saying shes likely to win it.

Mar 31st, 2002, 01:34 PM
Right here, right NOW I think you've got your Group 1, your Group 2.... and then everybody else.

There is no legitimisation (like THAT'S a word!) for having separate stratums for Kim --> Justine --> then to Dementieva-Hantuchova's.... I really think you're splitting hairs. YES, Kim is the better player atm of all those 4, but that doesn't tell me that she's any more likely as contender, than anyone else on the TOUR - if we're being really harsh about things.... Smashnova is as likely to win a GS, just because it's equally as UNLIKELY when you look at how the last 7 Slams have panned out.

VBN, it doesn't matter if Justine demolishes Elena D, and Kim then demolishes Justine. On that kind of thinking, where would Jen be having been 'demolished' by Venus at USO and Justine at Wimbledon? Thinking like that doesn't make sense.

Group I - Jen, Venus
Group II - Serena, Martina, Monica, Lindsay (when fit)
Group III - Everyone else!!

Things can change, let's hope we see some love and sharing going on!

Mar 31st, 2002, 03:02 PM
I think that any one of the top ten, if they're on, and one of the top five has a bad day, could potentially take the french open.

Mar 31st, 2002, 05:48 PM
Originally posted by thefreedesigner
Group III - Everyone else!!

I don't think it's fair to put everyone else in a group... maybe just putting the rest of the top ten or something might be ok but not everybody else. That would mean that Kim and Justine are as likely to win a grand slam as somebody ranked 534 which of course makes no sense. Even though Kim and Justine haven't won grandslam they have come extremely close, especially Kim!

Mar 31st, 2002, 05:58 PM
thefreedesigner - sorry

Cybelle Darkholme
Mar 31st, 2002, 06:15 PM
I agree. Jennifer does not have an all court game. She is a baseliner. Her game is one dimensional. monica also has a one dimensional game. Baseliner.

Martina has an all court game followed by venus and serena.

Mar 31st, 2002, 06:20 PM
Rocksteady, you really crack me up :D :D

Venus game is one dimensional, LMAO!!
grouping her with Martina in group 2, classic.

You really should become a professional comedian.
good one.

Mar 31st, 2002, 06:33 PM
I think RockSteady means that Venus should be in Group 2 because on any day she can win Wimbledon or US Open, which are her two surfaces. She doesn't have as much a chance at RG or AUS though.

I agree. Jennifer does not have an all court game. She is a baseliner. Her game is one dimensional. monica also has a one dimensional game. Baseliner.

Good analysis Cybelle.:D Jennifer barely comes to net, but Monica is making progress taking balls early from midcourt.

Martina has an all court game followed by venus and serena.

Yeah, I've noticed Serena coming to net ALOT, finishing points off quickly. And she's developing(or already had one) a slice. I've never seen her use that shot before.

Mar 31st, 2002, 09:17 PM
Venus, Lindsay, and Monica all have one-dimensional games, especially Venus. She gets by on her power and speed alone. She always hits the ball the same pace, no matter where she is. She always hits it flat. Other players, even Jen and Serena, will throw in a lob, dropshot, or heavy topspin shot, or slice. For Venus, it's all the same shot, over and over. Even when she volleys, she hits the ball like a groundstroke! Not that she's a bad player...her one-dimension is better than all but two or three players on tour, but her game isn't "deep". I remember Jen slicing a lot last year vs. Conchita...something Venus wouldn't do.

And I am basing these on what I've seen this year. Venus hasn't looked the best this year. Martina has showed good and bad. Only Jen and Serena have looked consistently on top of their game. This could all change very soon...just like last year. It's not written in stone!