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View Full Version : Does Venus hit has hard as she used to? and other intriguing questions......


SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 01:07 AM
I have always wondered...........
One thing I know in the 90's she hit hard but the amount of topspin she put on the ball did not make it that obvious. Does she still hit hard? I think so, maybe harder.


What about Davenprt, Seles, Hantuchova?

As you get older does a player change their game and leave the style they were known for?

Are players better when older or younger?

CoolDude7
Apr 19th, 2009, 01:11 AM
this is kind of similiar to my thread. Players do change and develop strengths. They also can lose what was their greatest ability as they age.

CJ07
Apr 19th, 2009, 01:17 AM
She would be wise to use the topspin she used to, particularly this time of year.

I don't know why people think hitting hard is always good, or necessary.

SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 01:57 AM
^^^^^^^ Its necessary in todays game.

Andy.
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:14 AM
I think she hit harder 2000 to 2002 but she centainly hits harder now than she did in 2004/early 2005.

bobbynorwich
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:17 AM
She would be wise to use the topspin she used to, particularly this time of year.

I don't know why people think hitting hard is always good, or necessary.

Agreed. Look at Nadal who hits with extreme topspin, enables him to hit out on the ball which clears the net high but drops fast at end of the arc, thus staying in the court. A topspin ball is harder to return than a flatly hit ball. Venus uses a semi-western grip which helps generate topspin. I don't see that has changed in her game of late. And her placement skills are still very good --- equally, if not more, important than hitting hard.

SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:35 AM
I think she hit harder 2000 to 2002 but she centainly hits harder now than she did in 2004/early 2005.

really?

Uranium
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:41 AM
I think she hit harder 2000 to 2002 but she centainly hits harder now than she did in 2004/early 2005.

Completely agree. I also think it has something to do with confidence, after she won Wimbledon in 2007 she went back to hitting the ball harder especially at the USO that year and still is now. Also her serve in 2004/2005 if I remember correctly wasn't really being struck as hard as she was back in 1999-2003 and back in 2007 she also really gunned that back up. So I honestly think how hard she hits is dependent on her confidence, but that's just my opinion:angel:

SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:07 AM
^^^^^^ You have the best avies and sigs.

But I never knew ball striking is a confidence thing with vee.

CJ07
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:13 AM
Venus really pushed the ball a lot in 2004-2006 and her serve rarely cleared 120, and it was almost always in the body. Then again, I remember her playing Davenport in Stanford where she either hit a winner or an error, it was such careless play I really wondered what the hell she was doing.

Serena plays such a smarter, more tactical game than Venus does which is really odd because at times Venus can play brilliant strategy (Amelia Island 2002 for example) but thats rare.

Caillou
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:36 AM
good question..idk..i dont think she goes for as much shot per shot..but i think at times he hits just as hard

LeonHart
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:55 AM
I feel she did hit harder. She was also more fearless than she is now.

Andy.
Apr 19th, 2009, 04:02 AM
Completely agree. I also think it has something to do with confidence, after she won Wimbledon in 2007 she went back to hitting the ball harder especially at the USO that year and still is now. Also her serve in 2004/2005 if I remember correctly wasn't really being struck as hard as she was back in 1999-2003 and back in 2007 she also really gunned that back up. So I honestly think how hard she hits is dependent on her confidence, but that's just my opinion:angel:
I totally agree with Vee it does seem to be about her confidence and belief.

Direwolf
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:48 PM
i still go with Acapulco Final on clay

Direwolf
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:52 PM
Venus really pushed the ball a lot in 2004-2006 and her serve rarely cleared 120, and it was almost always in the body. Then again, I remember her playing Davenport in Stanford where she either hit a winner or an error, it was such careless play I really wondered what the hell she was doing.

Serena plays such a smarter, more tactical game than Venus does which is really odd because at times Venus can play brilliant strategy (Amelia Island 2002 for example) but thats rare.

when Venus plays hard...
she usually gets those wrists problems...

she was playing very tactically by the end of last year
especially when she serve those bagels!!

The Dawntreader
Apr 19th, 2009, 02:58 PM
In 2004, Venus lost complete comfidence on her groundstrokes after RG. That match against Sprem at Wimby, and against Sharapova in Zurich was Venus at her most defensive, and her forehand at her most malfunctioning. No real aggressive attempt and players were just walking all over her. I mean losing to Bovina? In straight sets? On an indoor court? Wierdness.

She's much more measured nowadays. Some would say it works against her, and at times her added spin leaves her vulnerable to be pegged back behind the baseline and just get fryed. However Venus still hits a mighty ball, increasingly more off the forehand nowadays, so she still hits a lot of winners.

Her serve has been the constant though the last couple of seasons. Has really found her serve again after her abdomen injury.

bobbynorwich
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:14 PM
Haven't notice any loss of mph on her first serve. She also seems to use the kick serve more often to good effect. And Venus uses more variety in ground strokes in last few years, rather than hitting every ball flat and hard.

Mashafaaaaan
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:22 PM
Haven't notice any loss of mph on her first serve. She also seems to use the kick serve more often to good effect. And Venus uses more variety in ground strokes in last few years, rather than hitting every ball flat and hard.

It took her 12 years, maybe she will win RG finally :lol::lol:

jimbo mack
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:24 PM
its interesting how venus used to be so good on clay but since 2004 her results this surface have not been as impressive

in 99 she won hamburg and rome back to back beating sanchez vicario, hingis and pierce twice playing some amazing tennis and looking at home on clay

i cannot imagine her achieving this on clay now

bobbynorwich
Apr 19th, 2009, 03:48 PM
its interesting how venus used to be so good on clay but since 2004 her results this surface have not been as impressive

in 99 she won hamburg and rome back to back beating sanchez vicario, hingis and pierce twice playing some amazing tennis and looking at home on clay

i cannot imagine her achieving this on clay now

She won the title at Acapulco this year, beating Pennetta and has a 6-1 clay court record this year overall. Does that count for something?

Marshmallow
Apr 19th, 2009, 04:21 PM
its interesting how venus used to be so good on clay but since 2004 her results this surface have not been as impressive

in 99 she won hamburg and rome back to back beating sanchez vicario, hingis and pierce twice playing some amazing tennis and looking at home on clay

i cannot imagine her achieving this on clay now

I can see your point on consistency and reproduction, but on quality of play alone, I think the performance in the Acapulco Final against Flava Flav was phenominal. Venus was playing with controlled aggression reminiscent of the early days on clay. She was hitting that ball as hard as ever.

So on that note, with regard to the thread topic, I think Venus is still capable of producing the blistering shots we were used to in her "peak", but the constant reproduction of that level is hindered by two things: Confidence (as mentioned by Uranium and dl05 amongst others) and stamina*.

*This is PEAK Venus, a random Vid (Venus V Henin Wimbledon 2002 semi final): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjQw1iy8uSM&feature=related or MjQw1iy8uSM

She just looks so strong here!!!

Venus lost some of this atheletic stamina she was showing at her peak during, during 2004 and 2005 (and her anemia issues, weight issues and so on since the MURDER of her sister in 2003). She looked fraile in early 2005, it was shocking. Venus didn't display the athleticism she did back in the day often - BUT - on occassion I've seen glimpses of it more recently. Venus has also talked about her improved fitness regime since last year. I think Venus has been showing some improved atheleticsm and stamina since mid 2008. Before then Venus just couldn't hold it for 3 setters much, but now I don't get worried if a match goes to 3 sets, just look at Doha.

So, yeah. Bottom Line is Venus is still capable of producing and hitting like she did back in the day, I think anyway.

Leo_DFP
Apr 19th, 2009, 04:31 PM
I agree with what some of the posters have been saying in this thread, that Venus does not hit the ball as consistently hard from the ground as she used to in her early days and even between 2000-2003. I think now she uses more guile and topspin, and is more eager to move forward into the net. However, she does hit the ball harder now than she did during her slump of 2004-2005. And she has been serving a lot bigger serves from 2007-now than she was during that slump - she's got the confidence to go for the first serve delivery which is why she's been hitting in the 120s.

Leo_DFP
Apr 19th, 2009, 04:41 PM
*This is PEAK Venus, a random Vid (Venus V Henin Wimbledon 2002 semi final): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjQw1iy8uSM&feature=related or MjQw1iy8uSM

She just looks so strong here!!!

Venus lost some of this atheletic stamina she was showing at her peak during, during 2004 and 2005 (and her anemia issues, weight issues and so on since the MURDER of her sister in 2003). She looked fraile in early 2005, it was shocking. Venus didn't display the athleticism she did back in the day often - BUT - on occassion I've seen glimpses of it more recently. Venus has also talked about her improved fitness regime since last year. I think Venus has been showing some improved atheleticsm and stamina since mid 2008. Before then Venus just couldn't hold it for 3 setters much, but now I don't get worried if a match goes to 3 sets, just look at Doha.

So, yeah. Bottom Line is Venus is still capable of producing and hitting like she did back in the day, I think anyway.

That was an amazing. Thank you for posting that video. That was why Venus was the most intimidating player on tour for the better part of three years, until Serena stole that position.

But you're right about Venus and three-setters. There was a period when she always always lost them, especially to the top players. She's been turning that around more recently since mid-late 2008. There's no doubt that her stamina regime had to be improved (especially when you look at how tired she was in her 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 loss to Jankovic at the '07 RG).

Leo_DFP
Apr 19th, 2009, 04:42 PM
In 2004, Venus lost complete comfidence on her groundstrokes after RG. That match against Sprem at Wimby, and against Sharapova in Zurich was Venus at her most defensive, and her forehand at her most malfunctioning. No real aggressive attempt and players were just walking all over her. I mean losing to Bovina? In straight sets? On an indoor court? Wierdness.

She's much more measured nowadays. Some would say it works against her, and at times her added spin leaves her vulnerable to be pegged back behind the baseline and just get fryed. However Venus still hits a mighty ball, increasingly more off the forehand nowadays, so she still hits a lot of winners.

Her serve has been the constant though the last couple of seasons. Has really found her serve again after her abdomen injury.

This is a great post. And I forgot about the abdomen injury - that explains why her serve wasn't banging for a few years there in the middle part of the decade.

Marshmallow
Apr 19th, 2009, 05:31 PM
That was an amazing. Thank you for posting that video. That was why Venus was the most intimidating player on tour for the better part of three years, until Serena stole that position.

But you're right about Venus and three-setters. There was a period when she always always lost them, especially to the top players. She's been turning that around more recently since mid-late 2008. There's no doubt that her stamina regime had to be improved (especially when you look at how tired she was in her 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 loss to Jankovic at the '07 RG).

Oh my good. I remember after that match I commented that in the third Venus was looking like she needed an oxygen take. Stamina was clearly an issue. But thankfully it looks resolved. ^.^

tennisIlove09
Apr 19th, 2009, 05:32 PM
Davenport said during the YEC that out of every player she faced (Capriati, Seles, Serena, Pierce, Clijsters, Henin, Sharapova, Dementieva), that Venus hit the hardest.

jimbo mack
Apr 19th, 2009, 06:29 PM
She won the title at Acapulco this year, beating Pennetta and has a 6-1 clay court record this year overall. Does that count for something?

it does to some extent but acapulco is a mm tournament afterall and venus struggled all the way to the final, although she saved her best for the final. i just feel that in the latter years venus has looked vulnerable and sometimes uncomfortable on clay, esp green clay, particularly remembering her loss to golovin at amelia island one year.

however, i think (and hope) that venus's clay season this year will be better than 05-08. she was unlucky to face lisicki in charleston, she would have beaten most, if not any of the other players in the 3rd round of the competition.

SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 06:54 PM
I can see your point on consistency and reproduction, but on quality of play alone, I think the performance in the Acapulco Final against Flava Flav was phenominal. Venus was playing with controlled aggression reminiscent of the early days on clay. She was hitting that ball as hard as ever.

So on that note, with regard to the thread topic, I think Venus is still capable of producing the blistering shots we were used to in her "peak", but the constant reproduction of that level is hindered by two things: Confidence (as mentioned by Uranium and dl05 amongst others) and stamina*.

*This is PEAK Venus, a random Vid (Venus V Henin Wimbledon 2002 semi final): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjQw1iy8uSM&feature=related or MjQw1iy8uSM

She just looks so strong here!!!

Venus lost some of this atheletic stamina she was showing at her peak during, during 2004 and 2005 (and her anemia issues, weight issues and so on since the MURDER of her sister in 2003). She looked fraile in early 2005, it was shocking. Venus didn't display the athleticism she did back in the day often - BUT - on occassion I've seen glimpses of it more recently. Venus has also talked about her improved fitness regime since last year. I think Venus has been showing some improved atheleticsm and stamina since mid 2008. Before then Venus just couldn't hold it for 3 setters much, but now I don't get worried if a match goes to 3 sets, just look at Doha.

So, yeah. Bottom Line is Venus is still capable of producing and hitting like she did back in the day, I think anyway.

But do you notice her groundies look a tad bit different? Not as loose as they are now.

But I still think that Venus was the most fraile in 2007 she was so thin...... Hantuchova looking.

I still think Vee can do amazing on clay this year....... What's her next event?

DeliriousPotato
Apr 19th, 2009, 07:13 PM
On the one hand, Venus has been losing power due to her aging... But on the other hand, the technological evolution of racquets has permitted her pwer ot stay constant. I think she hits as hard or even harder than in her Golden Years (2000/2001)

SV_Fan
Apr 19th, 2009, 07:19 PM
On the one hand, Venus has been losing power due to her aging... But on the other hand, the technological evolution of racquets has permitted her pwer ot stay constant. I think she hits as hard or even harder than in her Golden Years (2000/2001)

I know but I think she hits harder because of her technique improvements.

V's a star
Apr 19th, 2009, 08:08 PM
Anyone who says she is hitting as hard as she used to clearly isnt watching her play much. If u look at dubai specifically shes hitting with alot less force stroke 4 stroke. Only hitting aroound 18 20 winners a match which is very uncommon for her. But the upside is shes making ALOT less errors. Which is what weve asked for many years.

I think it all started in the Zurich final she rely changed her game to be more consistent and use her athleticism more to get balls back and frustrate an opponent, rather then go for every shot close to the line or very deep which she did the majority of her carrer. It was great in 2000-2003 cuz the players wenrt as athletic and Venus was sooo confident but 2004- till most of 2008 players became much fitter and Venus less confident.

So im personally very happy about these changes and its clearly benefiting her. Alotho sumtimes i miss all out Vee :drool:

volta
Apr 19th, 2009, 09:11 PM
she needs to get "meaner" and "bitchier" like in the old days :hearts:

Slutiana
Apr 19th, 2009, 09:29 PM
No, definatly not. She uses a lot more topspin now, especially on the backhand side - which is probably the reason she hasnt had any shocking loss so far this season. Of course using more topspin means that if she isnt playing great, the opponent will have more opportunity to go for her strokes as we've seen in her three losses today, but her consistency is greatly improved. I personally have loved seeing how effective her rolled backhand has been. She can create some pretty great angles from the most ridiculous places on the court. I'd say thats her signature shot right now.

Slutiana
Apr 19th, 2009, 09:34 PM
Anyone who says she is hitting as hard as she used to clearly isnt watching her play much. If u look at dubai specifically shes hitting with alot less force stroke 4 stroke. Only hitting aroound 18 20 winners a match which is very uncommon for her. But the upside is shes making ALOT less errors. Which is what weve asked for many years.

I think it all started in the Zurich final she rely changed her game to be more consistent and use her athleticism more to get balls back and frustrate an opponent, rather then go for every shot close to the line or very deep which she did the majority of her carrer. It was great in 2000-2003 cuz the players wenrt as athletic and Venus was sooo confident but 2004- till most of 2008 players became much fitter and Venus less confident.

So im personally very happy about these changes and its clearly benefiting her. Alotho sumtimes i miss all out Vee :drool:
Agree 100%. I think it was the ALG and Dinara matches if im not right? When her serve was RIDICULOUS and unlplayable and she was backing it up with the consistently aggresive groundies. Her grounstrokes are starting to remind me of Maria's and when her form is on, not many people can challenge them.

Inger67
Apr 19th, 2009, 09:55 PM
Seeing that Venus is pushing 30 in the next year, I would say no.

Midnight_Robber
Apr 19th, 2009, 11:34 PM
I think Venus oscillates between hard, flat strokes and top-spin, depending on the match and the opponent.

I agree that in Zurich she really wanted the win against Penetta and realised that she wasn't playing against a player who could match her for power, so she strategically used top-spin combined with big serves when necessary. She has mixed success when she is hitting all-out. Works well against a player like Safina last year. And there was lots of hard, flat hitting at that HK exo (where there was zero real pressure) and it worked a treat against Pavlyuchenko at Dubai.

I agree that she hits flat, powerful groundies to the lines when she's confident in her placement, when she likes the surface and when she's feeling healthy. And she needs to keep this option open.

But it also failed abysmally against Serena at the USO last year, and didn't make a dent on Lisicki. She needs to figure out which opponents and matches require those big, flat, groundies and which ones require more spin, more netplay and more variety of shots.