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ezekiel
May 19th, 2005, 07:41 AM
Heading into the French, females are finally become fascinatingly unpredictable (http://www.********************/sub_roland_garros_051805.html)

The week before any Grand Slam is a time for questions, many of which will not be answered until the final weekend, and the lead-in to this year's Roland Garros is just as plum full of uncertainty as always, especially on the women's side.

Men's tennis offers plenty of imponderables as the '05 French Open soars into view. Can Roger Federer win the one major title that has eluded him so far? Can Rafael Nadal turn his fiercely hot clay court form an into Grand Slam title on what will be his debut in Paris? Is any American, British or Australian man – including past champ Andre Agassi and last year's surprise semifinalist Tim Henman – likely to make it past the first weekend? What can we expect from the clay court specialists: quick Argentine Guillermo Coria, defending champ Gaston Gaudio and former titlist Juan Carlos Ferrero?

These questions and more will plague those whose minds – whether through hobby, profession or both – tingle into life as they count down the days until the tournament begins on Monday; it is arguably the women's event on which we should all be focussing.

While the men's side may produce a terrific, king-of-the hill clash between Federer and Nadal, it the emotional, topsy-turvy world of Sony-Ericsson WTA Tour that currently offers the most intrigue.

Heading Into the French, females are finally become fascinatingly unpredictable
The emotional, topsy-turvy world of Sony-Ericsson WTA Tour that currently offers the most intrigue. Gone are the days when there was a single woman to beat at each major; nowadays things are fascinatingly unpredictable in the women's game.

For starters, for the second year running, there is no dominant figure in women's tennis right now, no female Federer, no Steffi Graf-like empress of the courts. Last year's spate of injuries gave no one the chance to sink their teeth into the tour and growl at those who tried to wrestle it from them. Lindsay Davenport seems to regard the No. 1 ranking like a bored mother who has been given a balloon to hold in the playground, while everyone one else is busy running around. It's as if she knows it isn't hers to keep and appears more than happy to hand it back to the first child that asks.

That may well be the prodigious Maria Sharapova, who outshines her rivals like a 1000-watt bulb when it comes to superstar glamour and crossover appeal, but hasn't yet shown the maturity in her game to dominate the sport through her tennis. She is certainly not yet a canny enough clay court player to be considered as favorite for the honours at Roland Garros. Her run to the Rome semifinals last week was the first journey past the last eight of a clay court event and, while it put her a little nearer the No. 1 spot to grab it in Paris, she will have to better last year's run to the quarterfinals there. She may also have to hope that Davenport, who hasn't played since winning Amelia Island on green clay last month, loses very early.

Having the top spot up for grabs at a Grand Slam always infuses the draw with a little extra spice, but a little further down the women's rankings there are a number of other more vexing question marks which will be erased over the course of the French Open.

which serena will arrive in paris?
Serena Williams' win at the Australian Open offered hope that she planned to do more than just turn up at tournaments and pay lip service to her day job of being a professional athlete. The seven-time Grand Slam champion cannot be blamed for the ankle injury which forced her to miss warm-ups in Amelia Island and Berlin. But she admitted that it had no bearing on her dismal performance in losing to Francesca Schiavone in her opening match in Rome, where she looked off the pace and, in the opinion of some keen observers, a little out of shape.

Arriving at major tournaments undercooked and warming up through the early rounds has been something of a Williams' specialty down the years, but it would be remarkable even by her standards to pull it off on an unforgiving surface like clay.

Serena's sister, Venus, is the in the midst of the longest title drought of her career since she began playing full-time. The former French finalist's refusal to hire an additional coach outside of her parents has crimped her attempts at fixing the technical problems on her forehand and serve.

Had Kim Clijsters not sustained that infuriating knee injury in Berlin, her glorious march on the US hardcourts, when she won Indian Wells and Miami back-to-back, would have made her firm favorite to break her Grand Slam duck by winning Roland Garros. Clijsters has resumed gym work, but has yet to start hitting balls again and will not make a decision on whether or not to play in Paris until the end of this week. But if she does, the '00 finalist certainly has the speed, style and hunger to win it all. The question is, does the locker room's most popular player have the stomach for it?

France's Amelie Mauresmo also has a shot at No. 1, but admittedly has always frozen up under the intense Parisian spotlight. But she's enlisted the consul of France's last male champion, sometimes rocker Yannick Noah, and finally may find a way to calm her jittery nerves.

russian repeat seems unlikely
Then there's the questions of the other two Russian Grand Slam champions: defending champion Anastasia Myskina and US Open victor Svetlana Kuznetsova. After an amazing 2004, Russian Fed Cup leader Myskina had fallen on hard times, saddled with an aching shoulder, lack of confidence and alleged personal problems. The sometimes brooding, sometimes giggly but always court-smart Myskina won't go down quietly, but she could go down early. The super-athletic Kuznetsova's brutish game seems perfect for the surface, but she's going through mental growing pains after her breakout year and needs to right her ship quickly.

If there is a slight favorite then it has to be Justine Henin-Hardenne, whose return to form on the clay courts of Charleston, Warsaw and Berlin suggests that she is hungry to put her horrible, illness-ravaged 2004 behind her. She is the in-form player, but even she has no idea if her body will hold up for two grueling at Roland Garros so soon after returning from her long lay-off with a virus, not to mention the knee injury she sustained in January.

But the feisty loner Henin-Hardenne always produces good copy on court and off, but her take-no-prisoner's approach inside the lines also transfers to the locker room, where she has almost no friends and rarely cracks a smile. She may be the most intimidating persona for her small size in history. Just ask Serena, who JH-H reduced to tears in '03 semifinals.

While the final weekend of men's tennis could be one of the best ever, the women will hold the world's attention for two weeks with plenty of sizzling subplots.


http://img264.echo.cx/img264/1492/myskinasmrg04bh3004zd.jpg
http://img264.echo.cx/img264/9522/heninfmrg03arms3003sp.jpg
http://img264.echo.cx/img264/9062/serenasmrg02trophy3006dx.jpg
The past three women's Roland Garros champions: Russian Anastasia Myskina, Belgian Justine Henin-Hardenne and American Serena Williams.

jrm
May 19th, 2005, 08:46 AM
Unpredictable doesn't mean exciting

Crazy Canuck
May 19th, 2005, 08:57 AM
Um, I think the mens tournament is shaping up to be infinitely more interesting. But I'm a Nadal fan and can't tire of his press, so that might have something to do with it.

tennisrox
May 19th, 2005, 09:57 AM
A couple of months ago i would've said the women's side is more interesting, but with Nadal, and Gasquet and a couple of other clay-courters, i think Fed is in for a tough time.Should be a Great FO this year.

natacha1
May 19th, 2005, 10:14 AM
I really like womens tennis a lot more. I think 5 sets are boring to watch, it takes a hour before it gets exiting.
But I can understand that there are also a lot of people who like menstennis more.
It is just a matter of tast.

If the belgian boys play I also watch, but I start watching after the first two sets :)
And I follow henman at wimbledon, I really want him to win a time, not that I think this is going to hebben ;)

tennisrox
May 19th, 2005, 10:27 AM
Of course its going to happen.Tim is gonna win this year.He better, after all these years of torture!Of course it'll help if someone breaks Fed's leg;)Just kidding!

per4ever
May 19th, 2005, 10:34 AM
It just depends on what you like, isn't it?

If you compare men's tennis to women's tennis, then women are just amateurs (level-wise)

vutt
May 19th, 2005, 11:25 AM
It just depends on what you like, isn't it?

If you compare men's tennis to women's tennis, then women are just amateurs (level-wise)

indeed...

LefandePatty
May 19th, 2005, 11:40 AM
Serena's shoulders in the pic :o :tape: :scared:

sartrista7
May 19th, 2005, 11:46 AM
The trouble is - yes, the women are more unpredictable, but it's not because they're all playing amazingly well. It's because almost everyone in the top 10 is playing sub-par :tape:

Meanwhile, it doesn't matter whether Federer and Nadal dominate everyone else because they're currently doing it with such artistry and elegance.

hablo
May 19th, 2005, 11:53 AM
The trouble is - yes, the women are more unpredictable, but it's not because they're all playing amazingly well. It's because almost everyone in the top 10 is playing sub-par :tape:

Meanwhile, it doesn't matter whether Federer and Nadal dominate everyone else because they're currently doing it with such artistry and elegance.

I'm sorry. I have a hard time associating artistry and elegance with Nadal, not that his not talented and all!!! :haha: :p

roger, yes. :angel:

Nadal, no.

Greenout
May 19th, 2005, 11:56 AM
The Tennis isn't subpar. In fact since the return of JHH and Kim, it's
actually gone up. Since IW- the finals have all be real matches
not based on choking or UE's. IW, Miami, Charleston, Warsaw,
Berlin and Rome. You can't compare these to the routes of
Roger matches nor the choking of Coria to Nadal.

sartrista7
May 19th, 2005, 11:57 AM
I'm sorry. I have a hard time associating artistry and elegance with Nadal, not that his not talented and all!!! :haha: :p

roger, yes. :angel:

Nadal, no.

Well, that's your problem, isn't it? It's not my fault you can't appreciate Nadal.

Greenout
May 19th, 2005, 11:58 AM
The Tennis isn't subpar. In fact since the return of JHH and Kim, it's
actually gone up. Since IW- the finals have all be real matches
not based on choking or UE's. IW, Miami, Charleston, Warsaw,
Berlin and Rome. You can't compare these to the routes of
Roger matches nor the choking of Coria to Nadal.


If men's tennis is so great; why do they not have 30,000 members
at MTF?

*men get the sponsors because the people who sign the checks
are men. Remember not everyone even watches tennis that
are sponsors- they go with what you tell them. Younger
firms are willing to go with women's tennis.

Dementinator
May 19th, 2005, 12:06 PM
Mens tennis is so bloody boring at times! Fed Fed Fed Fed thats all it is ,no excitement ,hardly ,just huge serves and mega boring drawn out 5 setters ,plus horrible hairy legs too! hehe

Well just my opinion and that aint worth shit ,but WTA for me!

sartrista7
May 19th, 2005, 12:12 PM
The Tennis isn't subpar. In fact since the return of JHH and Kim, it's
actually gone up. Since IW- the finals have all be real matches
not based on choking or UE's. IW, Miami, Charleston, Warsaw,
Berlin and Rome. You can't compare these to the routes of
Roger matches nor the choking of Coria to Nadal.


If men's tennis is so great; why do they not have 30,000 members
at MTF?

a) The women are still the more intriguing 'characters', b) MTF is a pit of hell (yes, so is this place, but this place has been going longer and thus has some tradition).

Greenout, would you seriously claim that Justine has been at her best in any of the finals she's played since IW? Or even now? It's a mark of how sub-par everyone else is (also: testament to her fighting skills and mentality) that she's gone on this three-tournament streak without actually showing that her game's clicked into place yet (until the Sharapova match, anyway).

Overall, though, it's only really the Belgians who could be said to be anywhere near their peak form - and one of them's injured again. The rest? Davenport can't win Slams. Sharapova is still maturing. Mauresmo continues to find new and original ways to choke in every Slam. Serena's histrionics are more impressive than her tennis. Venus's slump is lasting so long that most people think it's her natural level. Myskina is in crisis. Kuznetsova and Dementieva are as likely to lose in round one as they are to get to the final (unfortunately 'winning the tournament' does not appear to be an option any more). Most WTA top players are defined by the ways in which they're NOT in form right now, and the winners of tournaments are essentially the ones who can hold it together mentally and physically. There aren't any compelling storlines at the moment.

switz
May 19th, 2005, 12:19 PM
men's tennis is more exciting than women's tennis.

everything else about the women's tour is far more exciting though.

moby
May 19th, 2005, 12:20 PM
If men's tennis is so great; why do they not have 30,000 members at MTF?That's because men's tennis fans are primarily fans of tennis, and not so much the men. Let's face it, WTAworld and MTF are pretty much gossip forums about players, discussion threads about the tour and the way it is run. The true blue tennis fans (more likely fans of men's tennis) are probably hanging out in technical forums discussing the stroke production and footwork of the different players.

And these true blue fans, just do not hang around gossipping about what Hrbaty is wearing, or about Lleyton and Bec.

daffodil
May 19th, 2005, 12:25 PM
Even though I think men's tennis is less interesting/exciting than women's tennis, I think that this year's French Open will be more fascinating.

-Nadal might make a run.
-Safin might win a match.
-Federer might win the career Grand Slam.
-Will Andre hold ground?

In women's tennis, it's really just about Serena, Venus, and Maria.

switz
May 19th, 2005, 12:26 PM
The true blue tennis fans (more likely fans of men's tennis) are probably hanging out in technical forums discussing the stroke production and footwork of the different players.

i think the true blue tennis fans are more likely to actually be playing tennis than talking about it.

i certainly know that as soon a patty and chanda are gone from the wta tour switz will be gone from wtaworld :D

daffodil
May 19th, 2005, 12:27 PM
men's tennis is more exciting than women's tennis.

everything else about the women's tour is far more exciting though.

I agree. When men's tennis is on tv, I am overwhelmed at the amazing shotmaking, especially on clay. When women's tennis is on tv, I wanna see what Serena's wearing, or if Maria's forehand is on today.

tennisrox
May 19th, 2005, 12:28 PM
Nadal, elegant????come again?? :lol:
Roger certainly is though :worship:

daffodil
May 19th, 2005, 12:29 PM
Mens tennis is so bloody boring at times! Fed Fed Fed Fed thats all it is ,no excitement ,hardly ,just huge serves and mega boring drawn out 5 setters ,plus horrible hairy legs too! hehe

Well just my opinion and that aint worth shit ,but WTA for me!

I actually disagree with you on this one. I like the fact that there is one dominating force in the men's game. Just like I like in 2002 and 2003, with Serena and Venus. I mean, 2004 was one of the worst Grand Slam years we could have imagined...

Myskina and Kuznetsova have really shown in 2005 that they are Grand Slam champions. :rolleyes:

Wojtek
May 19th, 2005, 12:29 PM
Mens tennis is so bloody boring at times! Fed Fed Fed Fed thats all it is ,no excitement ,hardly ,just huge serves and mega boring drawn out 5 setters ,plus horrible hairy legs too! hehe

Well just my opinion and that aint worth shit ,but WTA for me!

I think you don't know tennis at all.

Federer, Federer :rolleyes: Did you see his some his matches this year? From AO against Marat, against Ferrero in Dubai, against Nadal in Miami or against Gasquet. Probably no.

5 sets can be boring but almost always 5 sets are intresting. 3 easy sets for favourite are boring.

If you think women tennis is more exating because men has hairy legs it shows how you know tennis.

Greenout
May 19th, 2005, 12:30 PM
i think the true blue tennis fans are more likely to actually be playing tennis than talking about it.

i certainly know that as soon a patty and chanda are gone from the wta tour switz will be gone from wtaworld :D

Maybe this is the problem with this article and statement.

This article is taken from TENNIS******** a newsletter
website that caters to gossip mongers. Other writers include
Matt Cronin. They love to hype and talk up things like feuds
on this site. It's not a tech/tennis site.

The writer of this article is Eleanor Preston more widely
known for writing about tennis for the UK Guardian and
Reuters. She mainly writes about men's tennis and prefers
Greg R over Tim Henman. She also enjoys writing about
the Sisters, Justine and Maria.

daffodil
May 19th, 2005, 12:30 PM
The trouble is - yes, the women are more unpredictable, but it's not because they're all playing amazingly well. It's because almost everyone in the top 10 is playing sub-par :tape:

Meanwhile, it doesn't matter whether Federer and Nadal dominate everyone else because they're currently doing it with such artistry and elegance.

I think you meant artistry and dominance.

:lol: :tape: :lol:

tennisrox
May 19th, 2005, 12:31 PM
men's tennis is more exciting than women's tennis.

everything else about the women's tour is far more exciting though.

I agree with you there.The men are just tennis players.The women are entertainers;)

Wojtek
May 19th, 2005, 12:33 PM
I actually disagree with you on this one. I like the fact that there is one dominating force in the men's game. Just like I like in 2002 and 2003, with Serena and Venus. I mean, 2004 was one of the worst Grand Slam years we could have imagined...

Myskina and Kuznetsova have really shown in 2005 that they are Grand Slam champions. :rolleyes:

Yep. For me it was boring 2002 and 2003 in one way because we had the same finals but when Serena and Venus played against Justine or Kim almost everyone waited for suprised and it was exciting. Last year we don't know who will win but RG and US open finals were very boring. I just haven't remember when French Open crowd booed finalist because she played so poor like Demeniteva did. They booed Hingis because she was acting like a child.

moby
May 19th, 2005, 12:36 PM
Yep. For me it was boring 2002 and 2003 in one way because we had the same finals but when Serena and Venus played against Justine or Kim almost everyone waited for suprised and it was exciting. Last year we don't know who will win but RG and US open finals were very boring. I just haven't remember when French Open crowd booed finalist because she played so poor like Demeniteva did. They booed Hingis because she was acting like a child.Please, she was only 18. They booed Hingis because she was challenging authority for what she believed in, and not acting like how meek overawed 18 year olds should act. :rolleyes:

Wojtek
May 19th, 2005, 12:43 PM
Please, she was only 18. They booed Hingis because she was challenging authority for what she believed in, and not acting like how meek overawed 18 year olds should act. :rolleyes:

They booed Hingis because she was challenging authority.

Buhahahaahaa :tape: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Sorry probably i saw diffrent final because in the final that i have seen they stared to booed her when she went to the Graf side of the court and then they booed almost all the time. She took 10 minutes bath break and two serves in the final set when crowd booed after them and she coudn't play - but they didn't booed her because of that and more :tape: but because she was challenging authority.

Greenout
May 19th, 2005, 12:44 PM
Women's tennis and men's tennis for that matter is only
interesting if your favorite players are playing. Ok- this is
the fact.

I don't care if there's a Roger -vs- Safin match on another
court. I want to see Justine.

Everyone one can say the same thing about their favorite
WTA player, and you would be lying to say that this isn't
what you prefer. You want to see Serena beat the crap
out of someone 6-1, 6-0 and that would be more pleasing
than Roger on the next court ,right?

So, there. This is what it comes down to. If your
favorite is a contender and on form the women's draw
at RG looks fun. If you favorite isn't here, or in a slump
you rather watch Roger or Nadal.

switz
May 19th, 2005, 01:39 PM
i don't know greeny i think some people just have an appreciation of tennis as well.

maybe i am a little different though because my favourite female is in great form, roger has been my favourite male since he was a junior, and rafa is my favourite youngster because he is bringing lefthandedness back into men's tennis :bounce:

switz
May 19th, 2005, 01:43 PM
also i think rafael's game equates with patty's on speed ;)

hablo
May 19th, 2005, 01:50 PM
That's because men's tennis fans are primarily fans of tennis, and not so much the men. Let's face it, WTAworld and MTF are pretty much gossip forums about players, discussion threads about the tour and the way it is run. The true blue tennis fans (more likely fans of men's tennis) are probably hanging out in technical forums discussing the stroke production and footwork of the different players.
And these true blue fans, just do not hang around gossipping about what Hrbaty is wearing, or about Lleyton and Bec.

:haha:

this statement sounds so sexist to me. un-be-lie-vea-ble!!! :tape:

but to each their opinion, I suppose ;) :p

tennislover
May 19th, 2005, 01:53 PM
it depends on the match

if it is federer vs henman :worship: no
if it is coria vs schuttler..... yes!

TonyP
May 19th, 2005, 02:23 PM
I hardly think there is a real clear cut favorite among the men this year. While Roger is the best tennis player in the world, clay is his worst surface, he has never done very well at Roland Garros and he has lots of strong competition, from Nadal, from Coria, from Gaudio, from Gasquet, who has beaten him this year. And remember, there are plenty of great male players who never won the French, including Sampras and McEnroe. Lendl never won Wimbledon. Borg never won the US Open. Roger does NOT have any kind of lock at all on Roland Garros this year.


Are the women more exciting? They are prettier, but they also play much sloppier, far more error prone tennis.

And look at their story lines:

Will Kim play and if so, what kind of shape will she be in?
Will Mauresmo do her usual choke?
Will Serena perform up to her level, or is she back to treating tennis like a hobby?
Will Maria develop the patience needed to win on clay?
Will we see anything good out of defending champion Myskina?
Will JHH's current form hold?

Look at these story lines and you see they are mostly negative story lines, while the issue among the men is how much more excellence is Federer capable of, and which one of the new, talented teenagers will rise to challenge him? And could this be the surface that they conquor Federer?

Sorry, but this thead is a nice effort to put a good spin on women's tennis, which is falling from its lofty peak of only a few years back.

Stamp Paid
May 19th, 2005, 02:26 PM
Infinitely more interesting.

tennislover
May 19th, 2005, 03:15 PM
clearly on a tecnical level men are better but on the other hand the struggle is more exciting in women's tennis: consider the top players: Masha, juju, momo, lindsay, serena, kim, svetla, venus etc etc it's so exciting: every match is a little drama...... :lick:
men's matches are better but are less exciting.....
that's so exciting to guess who will be the next women's RG winner...
about men's Roland garros winner: who cares, after all?

Greenout
May 19th, 2005, 03:21 PM
clearly on a tecnical level men are better but on the other hand the struggle is more exciting in women's tennis: consider the top players: Masha, juju, momo, lindsay, serena, kim, svetla, venus etc etc it's so exciting: every match is a little drama...... :lick:
men's matches are better but are less exciting.....
that's so exciting to guess who will be the next women's RG winner...
about men's Roland garros winner: who cares, after all?

Right. On the emotional level the women's draw is exciting.
Is anybody going to weep if Nadal or Roger win's? If
Amelie wins, you won't see a dry eye in the France. What
about Anastasia or JHH, or even Venus? Negative, perhaps
but a victory for them would be felt very deeply for their
home country supporters and the hardcore fans.

tennislover
May 19th, 2005, 03:27 PM
Right. On the emotional level the women's draw is exciting.
Is anybody going to weep if Nadal or Roger win's? If
Amelie wins, you won't see a dry eye in the France. What
about Anastasia or JHH, or even Venus? Negative, perhaps
but a victory for them would be felt very deeply for their
home country supporters and the hardcore fans.

yes.

jfk
May 19th, 2005, 03:39 PM
Women's tennis is generally more exciting to me. The matches are shorter and the points are slower and more fun to follow. It gets boring watching men's matches where the serve is the most important weapon. You'll have these great rallies and then one player will serve 4 winners in a row, making it very anti-climactic.

The exception is on clay though where I feel men's tennis is at it's best. The serve is neutralized and the points are longer. The greater athleticism on the men's side makes it very watchable.

No Name Face
May 19th, 2005, 03:44 PM
What pisses me off is that everyone writes off Dementieva...she's #5 in the world and has held that all year so far. What gives? She was the finalist last year, beating the world #1 and #2 in straight sets with a shitty serve. Now her serve is better and she's been way more consistent. People keep "overlooking" her but when she's in the finals again, it shouldn't be such a shocker. With that said, I'm pulling for her, Serena, Venus, and Kim (naturally), but I do want to see a Kim/Elena final to maximize drama.

The women's side is way more interesting. In this case, you have Davenport, Mauresmo, Sharapova, Serena, Dementieva, Venus, Myskina, Kuznetsova, Schnyder, Clijsters, Henin-Hardenne and legitimate darkhorses like Petrova, Zvonereva, Golovin, and Ivanovic all vying for the same title and as well as JHH has been doing, I don't consider her a favorite. It's anyone's to run away with. I predict that Lena, Serena, Venus, and Henin-Hardenne will show up with great form and surprise a lot of people.

améliemomo
May 19th, 2005, 04:00 PM
I think women tennis is more "attractive" than men one because there are so many pretendant to the title of a grand slam.Thats very nice for men tennis that young players come to the top and threat the n°1 roger federer(rafael nadal,richard gasquet) but roger is still the REAL CHIEF.Whereas there isnt a real domination in women tennis.Its exciting for sure to follow the wta tournaments more than men one.