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View Full Version : 2010 Wimbledon is just a preview of the next generation of grass tennis.


LudwigDvorak
Jul 1st, 2010, 09:11 AM
Almost every young player interviewed Wimbledon play their first match on grass well into their junior career; few of them actually like to play on the surface.

The only player of the next generation who is semi-competent on the surface is Radwanska, but she can't be an anchor at Wimbledon due to her vulnerability to an inspire explosive hitter.

Do you think this will hurt the legacy of Wimbledon when it goes from the most predictable, exclusive, and dominated slam on the women's side to the most open and random?

kittyking
Jul 1st, 2010, 09:15 AM
Do not discount Petra Kvitova, I strongly believe that she will reach the semifinals or better of another grand slam. Bepa has shown in the past her potential, who knows she could have another couple of semi's left in her (why is she falling outa the top 10 if she looses tomorrow :fiery:). I'm... indifferent about Pironkova, shes good but lacks a bit of passion on the court. And Serena... as much as I hate to admit it, she is a champion in her own right.

Corswandt
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:14 AM
Almost every young player interviewed Wimbledon play their first match on grass well into their junior career; few of them actually like to play on the surface.

+ there isn't a single grasscourt in several, if not most, continental European countries.

I wouldn't go as far as calling grasscourt tennis an Anglo eccentricity, but...

Most young players have thus no idea about how to play (and above all how to move) on grass, so they are forced to improvise. A few do well, most don't. In previous seasons, several Generation Suckers effectively took the grasscourt season off for a vacation. This season not as much, since several players have began to notice the ineptness of the Tour as a whole on grass, understood that as being a window of opportunity, and showed up ready to take advantage of the inevitable falling apart of draws.

And yes, like you said, the amusingly random results that we're going to get at the English Open 3-4 years from now are going to deal a serious blow to its prestige.

I also believe that the English Open will be forced to switch surfaces within the lifetimes of most TF posters, since there seems to be no chance of a proper grasscourt season being included in the ATP/WTA schedule.

Polikarpov
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:18 AM
Wimbledon to become Roland Garros-like after the Williams sisters retire.

Just Do It
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:23 AM
Will people ever stop whining about this crap :yawn:

LudwigDvorak
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:47 AM
+ there isn't a single grasscourt in several, if not most, continental European countries.

Yes, Pironkova said that as well as Kanepi.



Most young players have thus no idea about how to play (and above all how to move) on grass, so they are forced to improvise. A few do well, most don't.

There really isn't an emerging star right now who you could say is good on grass.



and showed up ready to take advantage of the inevitable falling apart of draws.

Which basically is this draw only Serena is retired and it is another mid-ranked random player who ushered out a top 5 player.



And yes, like you said, the amusingly random results that we're going to get at the English Open 3-4 years from now are going to deal a serious blow to its prestige.

It is a real serious issue. More than people are willing to recognize or acknowledge. The most common tangent of the greatest of champions is Wimbledon. Then the winners' circle is going to be reduced to a wheel of fortune year after year.



I also believe that the English Open will be forced to switch surfaces within the lifetimes of most TF posters, since there seems to be no chance of a proper grasscourt season being included in the ATP/WTA schedule.

I don't think Wimbledon will ever change its surface. I think they would simply continue to hold the event as grass and deal with the shitty consequences each year. They continue to add more clay events to the calendar like this string of MM tournaments built for players to inflate their rankings instead of fixing the calendar.

I have hope that with their backs against the wall that they will finally make the appropriate changes to the grass season in the next 5 years or so.

Slutiana
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:58 AM
There really isn't an emerging star right now who you could say is good on grass.

There isn't an emerging star right now, period.

We'll see what the future holds. Wimbledon won't ever change its surface, ever, and you're right in saying that the grass season is just too short for anybody to even develop a grasscourt game.

And grass courts are rare in any country. There seems to be some misconception that Britain is full of them but i've travelled all around England playing tournaments in the past and i've probably seen about 5 clubs with proper grasscourts. Players just need time to develop their game and feel comfortable on the grass, i mean look at Pironkova - she finally breaks through and has a chance to play a few matches and her grasscourt game is improving so much with every single match.

bandabou
Jul 1st, 2010, 11:13 AM
The problem is that girls don't know how to SERVE anymore. That's the whole thing....

LudwigDvorak
Jul 1st, 2010, 11:17 AM
The problem is that girls don't know how to SERVE anymore. That's the whole thing....

Women never knew how to serve except a select few.

If you look at the greatest of greats, with Evert being the abnormality, Navratilova, Graf, Court, King, Serena all were the top serves of their generation. It isn't a coincidence.

sammy01
Jul 1st, 2010, 11:17 AM
There isn't an emerging star right now, period.

We'll see what the future holds. Wimbledon won't ever change its surface, ever, and you're right in saying that the grass season is just too short for anybody to even develop a grasscourt game.

And grass courts are rare in any country. There seems to be some misconception that Britain is full of them but i've travelled all around England playing tournaments in the past and i've probably seen about 5 clubs with proper grasscourts. Players just need time to develop their game and feel comfortable on the grass, i mean look at Pironkova - she finally breaks through and has a chance to play a few matches and her grasscourt game is improving so much with every single match.

this. the club i help run had 3 grass courts untill 3 years ago as the upkeep and cost (Ł3,500 a year to maintain them) was just far too much to justify courts that could only be used from may till late september.

grass courts even in the uk are a dying thing, they are not practical to coach on due to indifferent bounces, cant be played on for hours after rain and are only useable for a few months a year.

it is no wonder none of the girls have a clue how to play on grass, it is just not viable to learn to play on these days.

bandabou
Jul 1st, 2010, 12:12 PM
Women never knew how to serve except a select few.

If you look at the greatest of greats, with Evert being the abnormality, Navratilova, Graf, Court, King, Serena all were the top serves of their generation. It isn't a coincidence.

Lots of Wimbledons there...just goes to show.

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 1st, 2010, 12:14 PM
Okay, it is true that the fact that the grass season lasts just 4 weeks a year makes it something of an anomaly. It would be great if the LTA would put back Wimbledon just one week. I think that would make a big difference. It is also that a lot of players don't really know how to play on grass as well as they could and the fact that there are so few grass courts around the world doesn't help.

But for all that I do think this thread is way OTT in terms of its doomsayer predictions. Wimbledon is Wimbledon. It doesn't need stars to win it's tournament. It makes stars of those who win it. Wimbledon is bigger than any of the players who compete here. And for all the griping about the big names dropping out early there has been some great tennis played here this year as always. Having attended 5 days this year I have to say I was thoroughly entertained. I saw Tsvetana Pironkova beat Bartoli and it was clear to me then that she would give Venus a tough match. She is playing great and deserves her place in the Semis.

Suggestions that Pironkova's run and/or Kvitova's run are flukes are totally lacking in foresight. Let us see how they do after this, not over the next month, but over the next 3 years. If they accomplish nothing more after 3 years (not after 1 or 2 months) then we can say their runs were flukes.

I am not worried at all about Wimbledon and frankly I enjoy the fact that this tournament looks likely to be wide open over the next few years.

GeeTee
Jul 1st, 2010, 12:26 PM
+ there isn't a single grasscourt in several, if not most, continental European countries.

Yep - just as it has been for a hundred years or so..

the amusingly random results that we're going to get at the English Open 3-4 years from now are going to deal a serious blow to its prestige.

Doubt it

I also believe that the English Open will be forced to switch surfaces within the lifetimes of most TF posters
Doubt this too..

I would like a slightly longer grass-court season though..

Dave.
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:09 PM
I have hope that with their backs against the wall that they will finally make the appropriate changes to the grass season in the next 5 years or so.

This is never going to happen. Everyone has complained about this at some point, over years and years, and it's never been changed. Wimbledon and the French already have their solid places in the calendar, particularly Wimbledon. The French would need to be moved forward but I still don't see that happening.

And where exactly are all these extra grass tournaments going to take place? Really the only places capable of maintaining top class grasscourts fit for a professional tennis event are already all in use.

Like Shvedbarilescu said, Wimbledon is bigger than the players. It makes the players, not the other way round.

The grasscourt season has been the same since Venus, Serena, Mauresmo, Davenport, Sharapova, Graf etc. etc. were playing. They likely didn't play their first matches on the surface until they started playing international tournaments, yet they were all obviously very comfortable on the surface.

The whole tour right now is less predictable and less dominated. This is true everywhere not just on grass. And I don't think Wimbledon was ever necessarily any more "exclusive" than the other slams, since they've all been equal and all had all of the best players. It's just we put Wimbledon champions on a higher pedastel, because it's Wimbledon.

Leo_DFP
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:18 PM
There isn't an emerging star right now, period.

This.

After Serena retires, and she's been the only top player with any consistency in Grand Slams over these past 3 seasons, the tour might have no anchors at all. It seems right now that the Slams are up for grabs. Whoever happens to hit good form at the right moment and ride the wave... whether it be someone in the Top 15 who never before made the Top 10 or a GS SF or someone outside the Top 80 who never before did anything.

Women's tennis could become like golf. WIDE OPEN. With a group of fairly consistent players (Jankovic, Wozniacki, Azarenka, etc.) who have generally good results but don't necessarily win the Majors. That's the way it's been in golf for years.

LudwigDvorak
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:19 PM
And I don't think Wimbledon was ever necessarily any more "exclusive" than the other slams, since they've all been equal and all had all of the best players. It's just we put Wimbledon champions on a higher pedastel, because it's Wimbledon.

Look at how many names have won Wimbledon in the last 20 years compared to the other 3 slams. Definitely exclusive, definitely dominated.

Dave.
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:32 PM
Graf
Seles
Pierce
Hingis
Davenport
Capriati
S Williams
Henin
Mauresmo
Sharapova


Navratilova
Graf
Martinez
Hingis
Novotna
Davenport
V Williams
S Williams
Sharapova
Mauresmo

10 have won the AO, 10 at Wimbledon.

RG and USO only have 12 winners each. RG was dominated so much by just 3 players for over a decade, then Henin in the mid-00's.

LudwigDvorak
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:43 PM
Graf
Seles
Pierce
Hingis
Davenport
Capriati
S Williams
Henin
Mauresmo
Sharapova


Navratilova
Graf
Martinez
Hingis
Novotna
Davenport
V Williams
S Williams
Sharapova
Mauresmo

10 have won the AO, 10 at Wimbledon.

RG and USO only have 12 winners each. RG was dominated so much by just 3 players for over a decade, then Henin in the mid-00's.

How many finalists?

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 1st, 2010, 01:49 PM
How many finalists?

Clutching at straws.

Corswandt
Jul 2nd, 2010, 09:40 AM
The French would need to be moved forward but I still don't see that happening.

"The French" :rolleyes: can't be moved forward as it would increase the chances of it running into bad weather.

It's "the English" that has to move.

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 2nd, 2010, 09:43 AM
"The French" :rolleyes: can't be moved forward as it would increase the chances of it running into bad weather.

It's "the English" that has to move.

I have to agree with this. It is up to Wimbledon to move back a week, a decision I hope one day they will make.

-Sonic-
Jul 2nd, 2010, 09:50 AM
Clutching at straws.

Lol he so is.

Also would like to highlight the whole "its the rest of the world's fault re: the whole english vs british thing" - definitely not the english's fault that the rest of the world doesn't know the difference between england & britain!

Danii's Law
Jul 2nd, 2010, 10:47 AM
I would love to see a player emerge who can play proper grass court tennis. Someone who has a lot of slice and who likes to come to the net. Some coach should clue in on that and raise a player specifically to perform well at Wimbledon.
I think Sharapova and Azarenka, at this stage, are the future of Wimbledon, but the Williams are not going anywhere for a while.

Patrick345
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:06 AM
IŽm sorry, but every top ten player has enough money in their bank account, that they could build a private grass court to pratice, if they are serious about it. Or 4-5 top 50 players from the same country throw together some money and build two courts. I highly doubt it would be worth their money though.

Players like Wozniacki, Radwanska, Sharapova, Safina have all been to the juniors final, so they have a long history on grass. They have had success on the grass over the years, so they have plenty of experience. We wouldnŽt be hearing anything about this, if Pironkova hadnŽt upset Venus.

Jankovic/Zvonareva/Clijsters/Henin/Petrova were in one bracket, Serena/Sharapova/Li/Kuze in another, Safina and Demetnieva had to withdraw.

Basically this comes all down to Wozniacki messing up her quarter, but that is something weŽll just have to get used to. She is not good enough to live up to that ranking, when she meets a powerhitter on form itŽs the end of the road. So it was somewhat expected for an underdog to come through there.


Pironkova increased the shock, when she upset Venus, because suddenly we had two un-seeded players in the semifinal. We wouldnŽt be hearing a bleep about grass being random, had Venus beaten Pironkova. Serena vs. the WozniackiŽs lottery winner bracket, Venus vs. Vera. Nothing too shocking there.

LudwigDvorak
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:12 AM
Basically this comes all down to Wozniacki messing up her quarter, but that is something weŽll just have to get used to.

We wouldnŽt be hearing a bleep about grass being random, had Venus beaten Pironkova.

This isn't true at all. I recall Corswandt and a few other posters mentioning similar predictions in previous years. This isn't a knee-jerk reaction to this years draw certainly.

Everyone can play on hardcourt in the new generation.
There are several girls that are capable on clay.
There is no one that can play on grass.

I'm not clutching at straws. We can name who will be contending for the other 3 slams on a short list. You couldn't predict the next Wimbledon champion to save your life, no one can.

bandabou
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:19 AM
How you can't predict it? It's the easier one to do...as long as the Williamses are still playing, the title goes through them, no? only ONE year since '99 without a WS in the finals...and 5 all-Williams finals since ' 01!

-Sonic-
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:25 AM
Lets just play every tournament on a medium speed hardcourt, so that the best 2-3 players will win every week.

timafi
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:30 AM
I would love to see a player emerge who can play proper grass court tennis. Someone who has a lot of slice and who likes to come to the net. Some coach should clue in on that and raise a player specifically to perform well at Wimbledon.
I think Sharapova and Azarenka, at this stage, are the future of Wimbledon, but the Williams are not going anywhere for a while.

the last player who played proper grass court tennis made 3 semis at Wimbledon and won it in 2006 and is retired now

denny5576
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:38 AM
Everyone can play on hardcourt in the new generation.
There are several girls that are capable on clay.
There is no one that can play on grass.

If no one can play on grass how then Venus lost?
How Sharapova lost several times?
Did Pironkova play well on grass? Yes.
Did Kvitova play well on grass? Yes.
Did Kanepi play well on grass? Yes.
Did Zvonareva play well on grass? Yes.
The problem is not with the surface but with the current form of the players.
And also with the level of quality of the WTA players. Never before in the history of women tennis the quality of TOP-100, TOP-200, TOP-300 was so high. Now there are TOP-200 players who can win a match against TOP-20 or even TOP-10 player if the top player is not prepared to fight for the win.
Such things were not existing before. Many cry for the "gold time" of Evert and Navratilova, Graf and Seles, etc. But the competition then was very weak. It was not like today.
Even Serena could have lost the semi-final agaunst Kvitova if for half an hour her serve was deserting her. That's the level of the unseeded now. It is much higher than the level of most seeded players only ten years ago.
Many complain because simply cannot understand and cannot accept that the tennis is completely different now.

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:52 AM
This isn't true at all. I recall Corswandt and a few other posters mentioning similar predictions in previous years. This isn't a knee-jerk reaction to this years draw certainly.

Everyone can play on hardcourt in the new generation.
There are several girls that are capable on clay.
There is no one that can play on grass.

I'm not clutching at straws. We can name who will be contending for the other 3 slams on a short list. You couldn't predict the next Wimbledon champion to save your life, no one can.

Strong sweeping words but plainly not true. Yes, the fact that young players get so little time on grass means that it takes them much longer to fully develop on this surface. Generally speaking for a young player their 1st 3 or 4 years on the surface are just practice for later on in their careers. But there are plenty of young players who have the basic tools to win on grass, slices, flat hitting, volleys, decent serving etc. But for a young player to hone these skills and apply them to grass takes time. Unfortunately patience does not seem to be a major virtue of the majority of posters in this forum.

Having said that it was good to see Kvitova, Groth, Kanepi, Makarova and Pironkova coming to terms with the surface this year. Others will follow.

Joana
Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:00 PM
How many finalists?

In the last 20 years:

RG
Fernandez
Hingis
Martinez
Clijsters
V. Williams
Dementieva
Safina
Stosur

Wimbledon
Garrison
Sabatini
Seles
Sanchez Vicario
Tauziat
Henin
Bartoli
Zvonareva (?)

So, 8-8, most likely. In the 90s it was 2-5.

Edit: forgot the GOAT and the exclusive club member Tauziat. :p

goldenlox
Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:01 PM
This was an unusual Wimbledon.
Both FO finalists lost round 1.
Venus lost to a noncontender from Fran's 1/8 of the draw.
Kanepi and Kvitova, that is one time QF

denny5576
Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:06 PM
Have a look at Serena's draw (this year Wimbledon):
Serena - Larcher De Brito, Michelle (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~14089,00.html) rank 148
Serena - Chakvetadze, Anna (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~9939,00.html) rank 118
Serena - Cibulkova, Dominika (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~12135,00.html) rank 46
Serena - Sharapova, Maria (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~9499,00.html) rank 17
Serena - Li, Na (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~4846,00.html) rank 12
Serena - Kvitova, Petra (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~13403,00.html) rank 62
Serena - Zvonareva, Vera (http://www.tennisforum.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~9376,00.html) rank 21

It means Serena, if wins the title, will make it without win against TOP-10 player and with only two wins against TOP-20 players. Does that mean weak draw and weak tournament? No. It only illustrates the ranking does not represents the true value and power of the players.

Patrick345
Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:30 PM
This isn't true at all. I recall Corswandt and a few other posters mentioning similar predictions in previous years. This isn't a knee-jerk reaction to this years draw certainly.

Everyone can play on hardcourt in the new generation.
There are several girls that are capable on clay.
There is no one that can play on grass.

I'm not clutching at straws. We can name who will be contending for the other 3 slams on a short list. You couldn't predict the next Wimbledon champion to save your life, no one can.

What is a proper grass game? Nobody on the menŽs tour plays serve and volley, or attacks regularly. Passing shots have become too good. The men hit it too hard, the women lack the height to cover the net. Basically what players should do in Wimbledon is what they should do on every other surface. Go to the net and finish the point there, when they have their opponent in significant trouble. That is a timing and recognition thing, intuition. Something most players lack.

And how about not predictable? In the last ten years (since 99) only ONE Wimbledon finalist was not a multiple time Grand Slam champion. So if anything the cream rises to the top more often than not over the last ten years.

In the last19 years, Tauziat and Bartoli were the only players with a career-high ranking lower than TWO, that made it to the final.


I can predict that unless you are french, or have a career-high ranking of two, you may very well stay at home. How is that for unpredictable.

So if Bepa wins this thing sheŽll either have to marry a french dude, or sheŽll win a few more Slams, at worst she becomes #2 in the world. :p:angel:

denny5576
Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:36 PM
And how about not predictable? In the last ten years (since 99) only ONE Wimbledon finalist was not a multiple time Grand Slam champion. So if anything the cream rises to the top more often than not over the last ten years.

In the last19 years, Tauziat and Bartoli were the only players with a career-high ranking lower than TWO, that made it to the final.


I can predict that unless you are french, or have a career-high ranking of two, you may very well stay at home. How is that for unpredictable.

So if Bepa wins this thing sheŽll either have to marry a french dude, or sheŽll win a few more Slams, at worst she becomes #2 in the world. :p:angel:
Too many conditions about Vera. Seems it is easier to predict Vera will not win...;)

Danii's Law
Jul 2nd, 2010, 05:43 PM
the last player who played proper grass court tennis made 3 semis at Wimbledon and won it in 2006 and is retired now

I was going to say that. Mauresmo was a true grass court player.

There are some girls out there who play a grass court game. One being Daniilidou, even though she isn't particularly good at the moment at least she's out there and has had some great results on grass.

It seems the new grass court specialists just hit a flat and hard ball unlike Daniilidou and Mauresmo who finessed the ball. Its a pity that the flat power game has become the was to play on the grass. It should be saved for the hard-courts, just as spin is best for the clay.

madmax
Jul 2nd, 2010, 05:51 PM
the problem is that all of the women are playing the same game on all surfaces - they all hit as flat and hard as they can without any significant change of pace, which is almost essential on grass due to low and unpredictable bounces. That's why I trully enjoy WTA ONLY on hardcourts - because their game translates the best on artificial surface. There are very few women, who know how to play on clay (Franny and Sam) and grass ( Venus and Mauresmo). All of the others play the same brand of tennis everywhere, and it's quite sad really.

TheBoiledEgg
Jul 2nd, 2010, 07:16 PM
Wimbledon grass hasnt been real grass since 2001

dont think Birmingham changed their grass, nor Eastbourne.