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View Full Version : WTA is at its lowest point since post-Seles stabbing period ('93-95)


marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:28 PM
my opinion... The 2-3 years after Monica's stabbing were a really bad time for womens tennis, and now again in 2006-07, I feel that so many "star" players are apathetic and just punching the clock week in week out. Mauresmo, Kuznetsova, Clijsters (quit the tour at age 23!), Hingis, Myskina all showing a big lack of desire. It's a sad sign when a glorified pusher like Jankovic gets to #3 in the world. Sharapova won the Acura but except for that she has been awful this year. And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance. And Golovin was supposed to be the next big thing but she is also languishing outside the Top 20. The new generation of players born after 1983 until 1989 is a very empty generation, the WTA is now living off of one star player (Henin) and the tail end of the Williams sisters reign (unlike in their hey-day 2000-2003, today the Williams just win Slams due to the weak play from the rest of the tour). It's just stagnant.

goldenlox
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:36 PM
Golovin was never supposed to be the next big thing. Sharapova was the star from Bradenton.
And Kuznetsova is not apathetic. She trains as hard as anyone.
Jankovic got to #3, so did Coetzer.

Petersmiler
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:39 PM
my opinion... The 2-3 years after Monica's stabbing were a really bad time for womens tennis, and now again in 2006-07, I feel that so many "star" players are apathetic and just punching the clock week in week out. Mauresmo, Kuznetsova, Clijsters (quit the tour at age 23!), Hingis, Myskina all showing a big lack of desire. It's a sad sign when a glorified pusher like Jankovic gets to #3 in the world. Sharapova won the Acura but except for that she has been awful this year. And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance. And Golovin was supposed to be the next big thing but she is also languishing outside the Top 20. The new generation of players born after 1983 until 1989 is a very empty generation, the WTA is now living off of one star player (Henin) and the tail end of the Williams sisters reign (unlike in their hey-day 2000-2003, today the Williams just win Slams due to the weak play from the rest of the tour). It's just stagnant.

But we have 3 players who are guaranteed to get in the HOF, with each one of them adding to their legacy this very year.

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:43 PM
But we have 3 players who are guaranteed to get in the HOF, with each one of them adding to their legacy this very year.



and in none of the 3 Slams this year was there any compelling matches on the route to those titles. Each Slam was a one-woman show. Only match remotely worth watching at the Slams this year was Serena vs Peer at the AO.

goldenlox
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:45 PM
I never believe the bullshit about the old days being great.
What was great about Seles winning everything every year except Wimbledon?
Federer does that now except it's the FO he hasn't won. That makes this the glory days of mens tennis?
I've seen tape of women's tennis with wood rackets. Wimbledon QF's were moonball matches. It was crap.

Petersmiler
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:47 PM
and in none of the 3 Slams this year was there any compelling matches on the route to those titles. Each Slam was a one-woman show. Only match remotely worth watching at the Slams this year was Serena vs Peer at the AO.


Jankovic - Safarova at Wimbledon was a classic. Sharapova - Schnyder at RG was good. I enjoyed both Serena/Justine matches despite their timing. Vaidisova - Ivanovic at Wimbly was also good.

That's four compelling matches off the top of my head.

frontier
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:50 PM
wtatour has been poorly managed since 2004,before that everyone was into women tennis. the sisters really made the game very popular between 2000-2003 and the men's tour was really bad almost an afterthought.the womens tour is going backwards to the days when it was a sideshow,no rivalries just non-charismatic players.those were the days when matches were compelling now most matches are just dull.I doubt if the usa open will be any different just another snoozefest.

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:52 PM
I never believe the bullshit about the old days being great.
What was great about Seles winning everything every year except Wimbledon?
Federer does that now except it's the FO he hasn't won. That makes this the glory days of mens tennis?
I've seen tape of women's tennis with wood rackets. Wimbledon QF's were moonball matches. It was crap.


I agree, overall quality of tennis is better today below the Top 10 or Top 15 than in past eras. But the Top 10 is what drives the popularity and star power of the sport, and today's Top 10 is crap, no rivalries, no intensity.

*JR*
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:52 PM
Golovin was never supposed to be the next big thing. Sharapova was the star from Bradenton.
And Kuznetsova is not apathetic. She trains as hard as anyone.
Jankovic got to #3, so did Coetzer.
A thread that gets you and I on the same side is saying something. :tape: BTW, you could add that the Contessa has struggled with a legitimate foot injury, and Marti's may have resurfaced after a year plus back on tour and in training.

In all sports there are periods of great rivalries and single dominant teams/players, and other times where their aren't. The sports survive the latter (and some fans bitch about them, of course).

Viktymise
Aug 21st, 2007, 01:56 PM
Jankovic - Safarova at Wimbledon was a classic. Sharapova - Schnyder at RG was good. I enjoyed both Serena/Justine matches despite their timing. Vaidisova - Ivanovic at Wimbly was also good.

That's four compelling matches off the top of my head.

:tape: It was a good match, but a classic ?

MagicMilan
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:00 PM
my opinion... The 2-3 years after Monica's stabbing were a really bad time for womens tennis, and now again in 2006-07, I feel that so many "star" players are apathetic and just punching the clock week in week out. Mauresmo, Kuznetsova, Clijsters (quit the tour at age 23!), Hingis, Myskina all showing a big lack of desire. It's a sad sign when a glorified pusher like Jankovic gets to #3 in the world. Sharapova won the Acura but except for that she has been awful this year. And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance. And Golovin was supposed to be the next big thing but she is also languishing outside the Top 20. The new generation of players born after 1983 until 1989 is a very empty generation, the WTA is now living off of one star player (Henin) and the tail end of the Williams sisters reign (unlike in their hey-day 2000-2003, today the Williams just win Slams due to the weak play from the rest of the tour). It's just stagnant.
:bs:
Ivanovic, Vaidisova & Sharapova, of course if they continue improving, all could play better than Martina, Kim or Jennifer ever played. IMO they could be in the league of Justine and the Williams sisters. Until 1995 it was all about Monika, Steffi and Martina. I think it's better to have more players that can contest for the tile. I don't see the level of tennis now being lower that in the 90's :)

goldenlox
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:03 PM
:bs:
. Until 1995 it was all about Monika, Steffi and Martina. I think it's better to have more players that can contest for the tile. I don't see the level of tennis now being lower that in the 90's :)That's the big point. If there are 2 players in every slam final, are the first 10 days of a major interesting?
No one knows who's going to be in the USO final. There's at least 6 with a chance, maybe 10 with a chance.

Petersmiler
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:09 PM
:tape: It was a good match, but a classic ?

Alright, classic may be pushing it. It was definitely compelling though.

Wayn77
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:14 PM
my opinion... The 2-3 years after Monica's stabbing were a really bad time for womens tennis, and now again in 2006-07, I feel that so many "star" players are apathetic and just punching the clock week in week out. Mauresmo, Kuznetsova, Clijsters (quit the tour at age 23!), Hingis, Myskina all showing a big lack of desire. It's a sad sign when a glorified pusher like Jankovic gets to #3 in the world. Sharapova won the Acura but except for that she has been awful this year. And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance. And Golovin was supposed to be the next big thing but she is also languishing outside the Top 20. The new generation of players born after 1983 until 1989 is a very empty generation, the WTA is now living off of one star player (Henin) and the tail end of the Williams sisters reign (unlike in their hey-day 2000-2003, today the Williams just win Slams due to the weak play from the rest of the tour). It's just stagnant.

Crap to be harkin back to the good ole days - todays tennis is faster, quicker, more exciting and the quality a lot deeper.

Remember this is 2007: we are dealing with a minority sport here, tennis ranks no 9 in US sport TV rankings - behind televised poker :o. The same story on the men's side.

At the very top I was quite enthusiastic about great rivalries at the start of the year: with both Belgians fit, Mauresmo, Sharapova, Hingis and the Williams sisters back in the mix. It hasn't happened - we have been a little unlucky with the retirements and the usual deluge of injuries.

Vamos.
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:16 PM
I think the tennis is as good as ever, really...I think there is something lacking though, personality. Unless you are an avid follower of the WTA Justine Henin is probably the most boring number one ever.

To the average fan she will never say anything of interest, she looks anxious on court looking to her box ALL OF THE TIME and she does pretty much nothing.

Tennis is not just about watching the tennis, like all sports, it is also about connecting with the players and personalities.

For us, we know Henin's story, we know how interesting her post-match interviews can be and how intriguing she is as both a player and a person. To the average joe she must be a BORE. Same goes for Mauremso, Kuznetsova and others.

(a lot of these are my fav players).

Unless you are REALLY into the WTA then so many of the players must seem boring, with the exception of Sharapova (everyone talks about her looks, endorsements etc) and the Williamses. They are not necessarily interesting for the right reasons but at least they catch the interest of the average viewer.

As far as the tennis goes I think we are at a great point in WTA History. It all depends on injuries, if all of the top players play at this USO it will be a GREAT field. Sometimes you just cannot help injuries and such, especially considering the commitment now required to sustain a good ranking:shrug:

Fingon
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:17 PM
wtatour has been poorly managed since 2004,before that everyone was into women tennis. the sisters really made the game very popular between 2000-2003 and the men's tour was really bad almost an afterthought.the womens tour is going backwards to the days when it was a sideshow,no rivalries just non-charismatic players.those were the days when matches were compelling now most matches are just dull.I doubt if the usa open will be any different just another snoozefest.


that's right, wasn't that what Larry Scott wanted? (still works for the ATP IMO).

Slutiana
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:26 PM
:bs:
Ivanovic, Vaidisova & Sharapova, of course if they continue improving, all could play better than Martina, Kim or Jennifer ever played. IMO they could be in the league of Justine and the Williams sisters. Until 1995 it was all about Monika, Steffi and Martina. I think it's better to have more players that can contest for the tile. I don't see the level of tennis now being lower that in the 90's :)

No. Nope, Never, Never ever. They do have talent and all could win GSs in the future but all the players you mentioned can't run and are very 1d. Lets face it. They don't have the full package and all of these player's mentioned have nearly all the shots and when on, are just breathtaking to watch. You cannot say that. Forget the williams sisters, they may gain more grand slams than kim and maybe even jennifer due to the weak field but if there was peak Jen, Kim, Martina vs Peak Sharapova, Vaidisova, Ivanovic. I know the oldies would win, hands down (LOL i know kim is still young:p)

That's the big point. If there are 2 players in every slam final, are the first 10 days of a major interesting?
No one knows who's going to be in the USO final. There's at least 6 with a chance, maybe 10 with a chance.

no, most players in the top 20 have a very small chance but we've seen it this year, when either serena, justine or venus is healthy and even just in OK form, one of them has got to win. (touch wood)

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:26 PM
that's right, wasn't that what Larry Scott wanted? (still works for the ATP IMO).


I fail to see where Larry Scott is responsible for the lack of quality young players and rivalries in today's WTA. Larry Scott didn't institute the age restriction rule that inhibits the development of young stars.

Fingon
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:26 PM
Tennis is not just about watching the tennis, like all sports, it is also about connecting with the players and personalities.

For us, we know Henin's story, we know how interesting her post-match interviews can be and how intriguing she is as both a player and a person. To the average joe she must be a BORE. Same goes for Mauremso, Kuznetsova and others.

(a lot of these are my fav players).


I am not going to defend or argue any particular player, but a big part of the reason why the interviews are so dull is because the wta forces to players to be lame.

They are obesessed with being politically correct and obsessed to give the image that every player loves all the other players.

The most clear example was when Justine and Elena Dementieva in interviews said how much the missed the Williams sisters, it was like whatever, they might respect them but missed them?

when a corporation tries to control every single aspect of the sport, including what players say or not say then there is no room for a human side.

The wta should be renamed the rta (robots tennis association), and once again, thank Larry Scott for that. (and no, I can't find anything he's done positive).

Slutiana
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:28 PM
do you know what we need? We need the Old Martina back :sad: she would be able to add a bit mor drama :o

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:29 PM
I am not going to defend or argue any particular player, but a big part of the reason why the interviews are so dull is because the wta forces to players to be lame.

They are obesessed with being politically correct and obsessed to give the image that every player loves all the other players.

The most clear example was when Justine and Elena Dementieva in interviews said how much the missed the Williams sisters, it was like whatever, they might respect them but missed them?

when a corporation tries to control every single aspect of the sport, including what players say or not say then there is no room for a human side.

The wta should be renamed the rta (robots tennis association), and once again, thank Larry Scott for that. (and no, I can't find anything he's done positive).


Why is is Larry Scott's fault if the players dont speak their minds? The players can say what they want, if they are robots in the interviews, that is their own issue...

Fingon
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:30 PM
I fail to see where Larry Scott is responsible for the lack of quality young players and rivalries in today's WTA. Larry Scott didn't institute the age restriction rule that inhibits the development of young stars.

and who told you the age restriction rule is responsible?

Larry Scott is responsible for antagonizing players, for forcing them play what they don't want to, for making an idiotic schedule worse (not talking about the season's lenght), for making them feel uncomfortable and disgruntled.

The only positive action Larry Scott ever tried to do (or said he would do) was to eliminate the AER, did he? it's still there, sure if he can mess around with the entire schedule, leaving tournaments that recently built stadiums out just because he wants to be "international" then he surely could have done something about that, but it was just talk wasn't it?

it's a known fact, if the head doesn't work, the body will not work either.

Fingon
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:33 PM
Why is is Larry Scott's fault if the players dont speak their minds? The players can say what they want, if they are robots in the interviews, that is their own issue...

can't you read? it's very obvious the wta is putting words in players' mouth, read Elena Dementieva's interview at Indian Wells the year Serena was booed, and read what she said afterwards.

Read Justine's interview before and after Larry Scott, it's quite obvious that the wta tells players what to say, there are a few that don't follow (e.g. Serena, Jankovic) but that's the rule, they have to bow to King Larry.

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:34 PM
Larry Scott is responsible for antagonizing players, for forcing them play what they don't want to, for making an idiotic schedule worse (not talking about the season's lenght), for making them feel uncomfortable and disgruntled.




If Larry has been trying to force players to play where they dont want, he hasn't done a very good job of it. The last 2 summer hardcourt seasons have been no-show city.

Petersmiler
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:36 PM
No. Nope, Never, Never ever. They do have talent and all could win GSs in the future but all the players you mentioned can't run and are very 1d. Lets face it. They don't have the full package and all of these player's mentioned have nearly all the shots and when on, are just breathtaking to watch. You cannot say that. Forget the williams sisters, they may gain more grand slams than kim and maybe even jennifer due to the weak field but if there was peak Jen, Kim, Martina vs Peak Sharapova, Vaidisova, Ivanovic. I know the oldies would win, hands down (LOL i know kim is still young:p)



no, most players in the top 20 have a very small chance but we've seen it this year, when either serena, justine or venus is healthy and even just in OK form, one of them has got to win. (touch wood)

I knew you were hoping for a Justine win!

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:37 PM
can't you read? it's very obvious the wta is putting words in players' mouth, read Elena Dementieva's interview at Indian Wells the year Serena was booed, and read what she said afterwards.

Read Justine's interview before and after Larry Scott, it's quite obvious that the wta tells players what to say, there are a few that don't follow (e.g. Serena, Jankovic) but that's the rule, they have to bow to King Larry.


The players don't have to bow to "King Larry", they are multi-millionairessses and they have the choice to speak their minds, if they don't do so that's their own fault.

Wayn77
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:40 PM
The players don't have to bow to "King Larry", they are multi-millionairessses and they have the choice to speak their minds, if they don't do so that's their own fault.

Nobody "speaks their mind" anymore in sport.
There is too much money to be made - you mustn't rock the boat.

crazillo
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:49 PM
I don't agree that tennis was bad from 1993-1995, I think the 90's were great overall, because there were real personalities on the tour and not only barbies like Sharapova.

A Magicman
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:52 PM
I never believe the bullshit about the old days being great.
What was great about Seles winning everything every year except Wimbledon?
Federer does that now except it's the FO he hasn't won. That makes this the glory days of mens tennis?
I've seen tape of women's tennis with wood rackets. Wimbledon QF's were moonball matches. It was crap.

They were not hitting as hard as they are now. But they had personalities. That's the difference to nowadays, I think.

I follow tennis since about 1985 and I saw them coming and leaving again. When I watch the matches of the old days, I say to myself that this was all awfully slow.

But if I could decide whether I wanna have the players of the early 90s back or those of today - i wouldn't waste a second to answer.

Nicolás89
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:52 PM
overall top 100 bar is better than ever the injuries are the proplem mostly in the top 10 that explain the lack of classic matches of these years, but if we compare petrova 2007 (top 10) to rubin 2004 (top 10) or even hantuchova 2002 (top 5) i just cant see nadia losing, but again if we compare serena 2002 to justine 2007 serena have the edge.

Maria Croft
Aug 21st, 2007, 02:54 PM
I never believe the bullshit about the old days being great.
What was great about Seles winning everything every year except Wimbledon?
Federer does that now except it's the FO he hasn't won. That makes this the glory days of mens tennis?
I've seen tape of women's tennis with wood rackets. Wimbledon QF's were moonball matches. It was crap.

I think this is a first but I actually agree with you :eek:

fammmmedspin
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:00 PM
I993-5 wasn't that bad. Graf was dominant but the matches were often close because someone else was playing well and Steffi had a lot of nerve wracking tight wins near the end of GS. Mary P. ASV, MJF, Jana could all take it close - we hav'nt seen long long games at Wimbledon like the 95 epic or anything in the FO as close as MJF v Sabatini or MJF v Graf in ages. Huber v Graf at the YEC i is one of the best finals there too.

The least competitive period was the period when Venus would beat everyone up and then collapse at some point in the final leading to the umpteenth Serena GS win in a row. That at least featured some big hitting though and Serena was undeniably very good.

The current situation is dire because the older people who ought to be challenging for the top and big wins have all wilted, been koed by imjury or given up at once. Momo, Kim, Nastya, Elena D, Alicia are not competitive or are struggling back from injury. Martina has lost her consistency, Nadia is not at her best, Patty is intermittently good. Both Williams sister have gone part - time. Lindsay and Jennifer have just gone. Several of the big stars who should have made it to be factors now - notably Dokic and Lucic (24 and 25) have gone. there is a vaccuum where the experienced competition should be.

Which just leaves the youngsters who can either play inconsistently and not pull out the biggest wins or consistently like JJ and not pull out the big wins. The older ones who can win big - Maria and Sveta moved into problem mode rather than on and up. The youngsters are good one week and not so good the next week or day. There's basically no one who could do what a much younger Capriati could do in the 1992 Olympics - stand against the top older player and hit the ball in on the decisive point and win.

The result is what we see. Anyone can get to a GS SF but only one or two people can win and most of the matches along the way are not that competitive. The fans are faced in the later stages with people they don't know losing badly to people who they can't beat - which is fine if you like the people who can still win if they are having a good week but isn't very interesting if you want to watch a close match. The old established players are not playing like it and the young ones can't pull out teh big wins to become known and established.

sfselesfan
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:02 PM
The tour is stronger and deeper than ever. Anyone who can't see that hasn't followed tennis for very long.

SF

propi
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:02 PM
I don't agree that tennis was bad from 1993-1995, I think the 90's were great overall, because there were real personalities on the tour and not only barbies like Sharapova.
Agree!!!
We had Graf, Seles, Sánchez Vicario, Martínez, Sabatini, Fernández, Date, Pierce, Novotna, Zvereva, Majoli, Huber, Coetzer, Van Roost and Appelmans, Basuki, Rubin, Davenport, Schulz, Maleeva, Paulus, Spirlea and I still forget tons of names :worship: If we add youngsters like Hingis, Kournikova and the sisters= 90's best tennis and great personalities :worship:
Matter of taste, I guess... IMO right now there's much less variety than in the past.

Volcana
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:06 PM
There's no current equivalent to Steffi Graf, that much I'll concede. But outside of that, the current era has MORE depth than any period since Seles was stabbed. Match it up player for player.

Serena = Seles : possibly sacrilege to Seles fans, but in terms of numbers, totally defensible
Venus = Hingis : I know Hingis is actually still on the tour, but in terms of winning slams, this is the matchup

Now of course, you could argue that Venus is the equivalent of the post stabbing Seles, and Serena more like the dominant Hingis. Still, it's two and two.

Let's say Davenport and Capriati are roughly Sharapova and Mauresmo. I suspect the current duo will wind up with more career GS singles titles, since they only need three more between them.

Now who's the equivalent of Henin? ASV? Not near the same level of dominance.

The real difference, athletically, between then and now if Graf. Only the greatest singles player in the history of the sport. Who remembers all the one-sided beatdowns of the mid-nineties? Who remembers all the moaning about how Davenport winning despite weighing 200+ pounds proved the tour was at a low point? Or how Navratilova making the Wimbledon final at 34 proved how bad the tour was?

The thread starter makes the mistake we all make, with every sport, when looking at the past. We remember the high points of the past, and measure them against the everyday of the present.

Athletically, the tour is better than it's ever been. The players are bigger, faster, and the rackets let them hit way harder. Yes strategic tennis has changed, but the ball is traveling far faster. Strategy HAD to change. Depth alone is no longer adequate in an approach shot. The theoretical #20 player can pass the theoretical #1 at the net with ease if she gets a chance to set up.

Tennis has changed. It's not better, it's not worse, it's different. The rackets, the surfaces, the balls, the players, the injuries. There's plenty of video of tennis circa 1990 if that's what you want to watch. But arguing that Manuela Maleeva vs Anke Huber was better tennis than Anna Chakvetadze vs Shahar Peer is just the same old 'things were better in the old days' crap. Fans in every sport bitch the same way.

Petersmiler
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:07 PM
No personalities on the tour now?

Didn't I just read a thread about the monster buried in Nicole Vaidisova? I'm sure the ball boys at her matches don't think she lacks personality.

Ok, you want personalities you like? How about Jelena Jankovic? She bowed to the audience last week when they applauded a fantastic rally and is always smiling and laughing on court.

Geisha
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:44 PM
The minute Venus and Serena play on a consistent basis, is the minute women's tennis becomes great again. I don't just mean the Grand Slams, but I mean each tournament. Rivalries are made from tournament to tournament, not from Grand Slam to Grand Slam. If Venus or Serena are playing Henin every second tournament, that will create a lot of interest in the world of women's tennis.

For example, the French Open QF was such a compelling match because they had met in Miami at the end of March. Everyone knew Serena could win the match. Unfortunately, it wasn't very good, but still.

The Capriati/S.Williams rivalry was incredible because they played many lead-up matches en route to the Grand Slams. In '04, they played in Rome before the French Open, Wimbledon, and US Opens. In '03, they played in Miami and others. In '02, same deal. This is what women's tennis needs.

All in all, it is about the players' health. If every player is healthy, then you can expect some great tournaments. Tier Is and IIs used to be highly competitive. Hingis had to beat three top ten players at the '01 Sydney. Venus played one to three top ten players during her summer hard court dominance of past years.

Geisha
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:48 PM
There's no current equivalent to Steffi Graf, that much I'll concede. But outside of that, the current era has MORE depth than any period since Seles was stabbed. Match it up player for player.

Serena = Seles : possibly sacrilege to Seles fans, but in terms of numbers, totally defensible
Venus = Hingis : I know Hingis is actually still on the tour, but in terms of winning slams, this is the matchup

Now of course, you could argue that Venus is the equivalent of the post stabbing Seles, and Serena more like the dominant Hingis. Still, it's two and two.

Let's say Davenport and Capriati are roughly Sharapova and Mauresmo. I suspect the current duo will wind up with more career GS singles titles, since they only need three more between them.

Now who's the equivalent of Henin? ASV? Not near the same level of dominance.

The real difference, athletically, between then and now if Graf. Only the greatest singles player in the history of the sport. Who remembers all the one-sided beatdowns of the mid-nineties? Who remembers all the moaning about how Davenport winning despite weighing 200+ pounds proved the tour was at a low point? Or how Navratilova making the Wimbledon final at 34 proved how bad the tour was?

The thread starter makes the mistake we all make, with every sport, when looking at the past. We remember the high points of the past, and measure them against the everyday of the present.

Athletically, the tour is better than it's ever been. The players are bigger, faster, and the rackets let them hit way harder. Yes strategic tennis has changed, but the ball is traveling far faster. Strategy HAD to change. Depth alone is no longer adequate in an approach shot. The theoretical #20 player can pass the theoretical #1 at the net with ease if she gets a chance to set up.

Tennis has changed. It's not better, it's not worse, it's different. The rackets, the surfaces, the balls, the players, the injuries. There's plenty of video of tennis circa 1990 if that's what you want to watch. But arguing that Manuela Maleeva vs Anke Huber was better tennis than Anna Chakvetadze vs Shahar Peer is just the same old 'things were better in the old days' crap. Fans in every sport bitch the same way.

I don't know. I mean, I think the women's tour has more "depth" because of injuries. The injuries of the top players makes them improve less quickly than the lesser ranked players, therefore evening their games up.

Post Monica's stabbing, she still played a whole bunch of tournaments a year. Venus doesn't. Serena doesn't. Even Henin, who has smartly scheduled herself this year, has only played ten tournaments, and even that seems like a lot.

Amelie has practically quit for the rest of the year. Maria just pulled out of a tournament.

*JR*
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:52 PM
it's a known fact, if the head doesn't work, the body will not work either.
If that were true, Somebody Suisse could no longer be alive. :help:

BuTtErFrEnA
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:52 PM
my opinion... The 2-3 years after Monica's stabbing were a really bad time for womens tennis, and now again in 2006-07, I feel that so many "star" players are apathetic and just punching the clock week in week out. Mauresmo, Kuznetsova, Clijsters (quit the tour at age 23!), Hingis, Myskina all showing a big lack of desire. It's a sad sign when a glorified pusher like Jankovic gets to #3 in the world. Sharapova won the Acura but except for that she has been awful this year. And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance. And Golovin was supposed to be the next big thing but she is also languishing outside the Top 20. The new generation of players born after 1983 until 1989 is a very empty generation, the WTA is now living off of one star player (Henin) and the tail end of the Williams sisters reign (unlike in their hey-day 2000-2003, today the Williams just win Slams due to the weak play from the rest of the tour). It's just stagnant.

:bs: that is all

Cp6uja
Aug 21st, 2007, 03:59 PM
And sorry to the fans of Ivanovic and Chakvetadze, but neither does not impress as a great player, I don't doubt these girls can win a Grand Slam title against a crappy field of 2007 but against the WTA fields of 2002, Ivanovic and Chakvetadze would have no chance.And what is greate about 2002 field (AO-Serena miss, RG-Serena, W-Serena, USO-Serena, AO(03)-Serena)??? Why Jankovic and Ivanovic in TOP5 is proof of weak field of 2007, but Dokic and Hantuchova in TOP5 is proof of greate field of 2002? Ana Ivanovic is still 19 y.o. but she already have couple times 50+ winners in some her 3-setters and for example serve faster than 200+ km/h - but for you this her ATP stats is perfect example of mediocre WTA tennis player which not have any chances against "greate field" of 2002!? Ana Ivanovic have this season 11/5 against TOP10 players, and both Williams sisters have in 2007 WTA tournaments 9/7 record against TOP10. Also, if we look last 3 matches Jelena Jankovic against Serena and against Venus - "pusher" JJ lead 5-1 against sisters! OK... she have realy bad H2H against Henin, but she not played against some young Henin (who finished 2002 at #6) from 2002 "greate field" - she played against greate champion Henin2005/2007!

Donny
Aug 21st, 2007, 04:14 PM
:bs:
Ivanovic, Vaidisova & Sharapova, of course if they continue improving, all could play better than Martina, Kim or Jennifer ever played. IMO they could be in the league of Justine and the Williams sisters. Until 1995 it was all about Monika, Steffi and Martina. I think it's better to have more players that can contest for the tile. I don't see the level of tennis now being lower that in the 90's :)

Yea, right.

treufreund
Aug 21st, 2007, 04:36 PM
I like Monica but this never-ending romanticizing about her play and the good old days wreaks of sour grapes. Sounds more like someone who wants to take away from the achievements of the top players now. Get over yourself.

tobe
Aug 21st, 2007, 04:45 PM
way too many injuries/withdrawals!!!! That's the big difference...no chance that a rivalry can develop with the flood of injuries! I don t know if that s all cos of the power tennis...I mean, why don t the men have those problems?
And quality-wise the last 2-3 years have been really weak as well (not in coparison to the 90's but too the time when i started following tennis in 99-03...

marycarillosucks
Aug 21st, 2007, 08:39 PM
The current situation is dire because the older people who ought to be challenging for the top and big wins have all wilted, been koed by imjury or given up at once. Momo, Kim, Nastya, Elena D, Alicia are not competitive or are struggling back from injury. Martina has lost her consistency, Nadia is not at her best, Patty is intermittently good. Both Williams sister have gone part - time. Lindsay and Jennifer have just gone. Several of the big stars who should have made it to be factors now - notably Dokic and Lucic (24 and 25) have gone. there is a vaccuum where the experienced competition should be.

Which just leaves the youngsters who can either play inconsistently and not pull out the biggest wins or consistently like JJ and not pull out the big wins. The older ones who can win big - Maria and Sveta moved into problem mode rather than on and up. The youngsters are good one week and not so good the next week or day. There's basically no one who could do what a much younger Capriati could do in the 1992 Olympics - stand against the top older player and hit the ball in on the decisive point and win.

The result is what we see. Anyone can get to a GS SF but only one or two people can win and most of the matches along the way are not that competitive. The fans are faced in the later stages with people they don't know losing badly to people who they can't beat - which is fine if you like the people who can still win if they are having a good week but isn't very interesting if you want to watch a close match. The old established players are not playing like it and the young ones can't pull out teh big wins to become known and established.


ok, so it's not fair to put the blame all on the current weak generation of young players. The older generation of players has completely collapsed in 2007, with the sole exception of Henin (if something would happen to Henin, the WTA might go out of business). So that's the problem, the collapse of the older generation at a time when no new stars are coming up.

The unfortunate thing is that no matter how bad the level is, somebody has to win the Slams, and it's likely to be some quite undeserving Slam champions in the next couple of years, I hope that I am proven wrong but thats what I suspect.

DA FOREHAND
Aug 21st, 2007, 09:20 PM
I like Monica but this never-ending romanticizing about her play and the good old days wreaks of sour grapes. Sounds more like someone who wants to take away from the achievements of the top players now. Get over yourself.

don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen. Selestials have been trying to revise history for well over a decade now:rolleyes:

Wayn77
Aug 21st, 2007, 09:21 PM
ok, so it's not fair to put the blame all on the current weak generation of young players. The older generation of players has completely collapsed in 2007, with the sole exception of Henin (if something would happen to Henin, the WTA might go out of business). So that's the problem, the collapse of the older generation at a time when no new stars are coming up.

The unfortunate thing is that no matter how bad the level is, somebody has to win the Slams, and it's likely to be some quite undeserving Slam champions in the next couple of years, I hope that I am proven wrong but thats what I suspect.

Underserving Slam Champion?? - there is no such thing.

Winning a Slam involves guts, a little luck, the right raquets, hours of training and SKILL.

Matt01
Aug 21st, 2007, 10:11 PM
Underserving Slam Champion?? - there is no such thing.

Winning a Slam involves guts, a little luck, the right raquets, hours of training and SKILL.

:lol: