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View Full Version : Updated ESPN Serena/Justine Article..


Mase
Apr 13th, 2003, 08:03 PM
CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Serena Williams is capable of losing, and everyone on the WTA Tour can thank Justine Henin-Hardenne for reminding them.


The Belgian emphatically ended Williams' 21-0 start to the season by beating the world's No. 1 player 6-3, 6-4 Sunday for the Family Circle Cup title.


"This doesn't change anything about the great champion that Serena is. But it means that today we could see that we can do these things against her, and she can be frustrated, too,'' Henin-Hardenne said. "I think it's good for the other players that we can see that.''


Williams' last loss came against another Belgian, Kim Clijsters, in the 2002 season-ending Tour Championship in November.


She issued a bit of a warning to future opponents.


"Sometimes you need to lose,'' Williams said. "I'm so motivated now. I can just feel it coming on again. So you've got to watch out.''


What was perhaps most stunning about Sunday's final at the clay-court event was the way the momentum turned after Williams won the first three games.


All of a sudden, her fourth-ranked opponent won six games in a row, taking 23 of the last 26 points in the first set. With Henin-Hardenne's smooth strokes right on target, she also overcame a 2-0 deficit in the second set.


"My whole game was like 9,000 notches down,'' Williams said. "I didn't serve well, I didn't return well, I didn't hit well. You know, it's just one of those days.''


The Belgian entered the match with a 1-4 career mark against Williams, who won a so-called Serena Slam by winning the last four major tournaments in a row: the French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open last year, and the Australian Open in January.


That streak led to talk on tour that Williams might be able to get through 2003 without a loss. But she repeatedly has said a perfect season was a lofty goal she never expected to reach.


"I think you guys dwelled on it more than I did,'' she said Sunday.


Williams showed some shakiness in the semifinals against former No. 1 Lindsay Davenport, blowing a big second-set lead.


Henin-Hardenne made Williams pay for errors, running down shots into the corners and forcing the American to go deeper into points than she wanted.


"I was a little bit nervous at the first,'' said Henin-Hardenne, who lost to Williams' older sister Venus in the 2001 Wimbledon final. "But then she began to make some mistakes.''


It's Henin-Hardenne's second title of the year and improved her match record to 21-4. She won a tournament on hard courts at Dubai in February, beating Jennifer Capriati and Monica Seles in consecutive matches.


On Sunday, Williams dropped her racket in frustration after putting a forehand into the net at 3-3 in the second set. She hit long two points later to fall behind 4-3. In the final game, Williams hit a lazy backhand approach into the net to end it.


The clay might have dulled her serve a bit, giving the swift Henin-Hardenne more of a chance to get to balls. Williams had nine aces against Davenport, zero Sunday.


Henin-Hardenne's plan was to keep Williams moving, changing pace on her shots the way a baseball pitcher changes speeds.


It worked perfectly.


"You ask yourself, 'Why did she have all these mistakes?''' Henin-Hardenne said. "Maybe it's because all these balls were coming back at her, she was running all over the court and she didn't have any solutions to her problems.''

Mase
Apr 13th, 2003, 10:12 PM
Had to update it....... ;)

Glenn
Apr 13th, 2003, 10:14 PM
Thanks Mase! *adds rep*

Jarrett
Apr 13th, 2003, 10:19 PM
The clay might have dulled her serve a bit, giving the swift Henin-Hardenne more of a chance to get to balls. Williams had nine aces against Davenport, zero Sunday.

What the Davenport/Williams match was played on a different surface than the match today? lol

Cybelle Darkholme
Apr 13th, 2003, 11:45 PM
wow now justine is taking credit for peoples unforced errors :rolleyes:

Jarrett
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:06 AM
wow now justine is taking credit for peoples unforced errors :rolleyes:

What? Where did she say that? She just said that she was nervous at first and then Serena starting making some mistakes after winning the first three games.

starr
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:12 AM
Serena always has a ton of unforced errors.

I've always questioned how they keep track of unforced errors. When someone has been run to death on a point and tries to go for a winner to end the point, but makes an error.... is that truly unforced?

Chance
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:22 AM
that's what happens is Venus and Serena's matches but people still consider that as unforced errors.

Havok
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:31 AM
"My whole game was like 9,000 notches down,'' Williams said. "I didn't serve well, I didn't return well, I didn't hit well. You know, it's just one of those days.''



wow so Serena once again finds a way to blame her loss on something and not the fact that her opponent beat her. :rolleyes:

lizchris
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:50 AM
wow so Serena once again finds a way to blame her loss on something and not the fact that her opponent beat her. :rolleyes:

Because Serena realizes that she beat herself today with her horrible play. Yes, Justine won and Serena gave her credit for playing a great match, but Justine had a lot of errors too. Justine didn't play the match of her life today and she realized it too. Remember, Serena beat her last year at the Italian Open in straight sets while injured and I think Justine played better that day than she did today.

~ The Leopard ~
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:50 AM
Naldo is right. Serena does sound rather ungracious here. Of course, it may not properly reflect the whole interview (*joui hedges his bets*).

angele87
Apr 14th, 2003, 12:56 AM
Serena is always a not so gracious loser... sure she says the other person played well or deserved to win or whatever but a positive comment followed by some sort of I played like crap comment isn't really something that I like to hear from players, even if it is true... A little I was below my best or my form was off comment might be acceptable but Serena tends to wanna go further than that...I'd rather just have a player say congrats, good play and leave it at that but ah well, Serena's not like that... I don't expect anybody was suprised by her comment today right??

JenCpLvr
Apr 14th, 2003, 01:02 AM
Serena is always a not so gracious loser... sure she says the other person played well or deserved to win or whatever but a positive comment followed by some sort of I played like crap comment isn't really something that I like to hear from players, even if it is true... A little I was below my best or my form was off comment might be acceptable but Serena tends to wanna go further than that...I'd rather just have a player say congrats, good play and leave it at that but ah well, Serena's not like that... I don't expect anybody was suprised by her comment today right??


And people wonder why I don't like her.. She's so arrogant it makes me want to hurl...

Never once did she congratulate Justine during her interview after the match.. It was just "I had a bad day".. It's typical.

Infiniti2001
Apr 14th, 2003, 01:20 AM
She learned well from your namesake if you asked me.

lizchris
Apr 14th, 2003, 01:28 AM
And people wonder why I don't like her.. She's so arrogant it makes me want to hurl...

Never once did she congratulate Justine during her interview after the match.. It was just "I had a bad day".. It's typical.

When Serena won the Nasdaq-100 two weeks ago, did Jennifer congradulate her? I am just asking because I know when Venus beat Jennifer two years ago at the same event, no congraduations came from Jennifer.

Infiniti2001
Apr 14th, 2003, 01:33 AM
exactly lizchris.. At OZ it was her eyeses-- She also had an excuse when Lindsay beat her a few weeks ago, did she congratualte her?? NO!

P.S. if you have glass windows don't throw stones

Fingon
Apr 14th, 2003, 02:05 AM
I might miss some, but I have only read once that Serena praised her opponent without any excuse, and it was when Mary Pierce beat her in Indian Wells in 2000. I guess that Mary must have played the best match ever, not Mary's best match, any player's best match.

It has always been Serena being tired, injured, playing bad, worried, blah, blah, blah. oh, I remember when it wasn't really Serena but an impostor :rolleyes:

Now, after the bashing, I must say that Serena really has earned the right to be arrogant, she is without a doubt the best player with no one coming close. On clay, her worst surface she is at least as good as the best claycourt players, nevermind the other surfaces.

Hingis used to be very arrogant as well, I recognize that, maybe it comes with being # 1, but I do believe that part of Serena's success is based on intimidation, and if she makes everyone believes that she is unbeatable, that plays on her favour, I guess it's as valid as any other tactic.

Dawn Marie
Apr 14th, 2003, 02:16 AM
Sometimes we see it with our hearts don't we? Get real. Serena praised Justine's play and she's keeping it real too. The truth is Serena didn't play up to par today. That will happen. It does't take anything away from Justine though. Don't get me started on Justine's past arrogance and she was never #1. lol

Serena is a fierce #1player, Justine won today.

that is all.

Leena
Apr 14th, 2003, 02:20 AM
Serena is so arrogant, what a BITCH!

Justine takes credit for others' unforced errors, what a BITCH!

Geez... they need someone like me to rule the tennis tour so you really know what a bitch is. :p

Cybelle Darkholme
Apr 14th, 2003, 03:02 AM
wow so Serena once again finds a way to blame her loss on something and not the fact that her opponent beat her. :rolleyes:


oh jelena never never never says she was tired played badly didn't feel well was injured or flat out gives up in a match... :rolleyes:

Havok
Apr 14th, 2003, 03:30 AM
oh jelena never never never says she was tired played badly didn't feel well was injured or flat out gives up in a match... :rolleyes:
ok did i ever say that Serena should look to Jelena for tips on being a loser. i never said that you idiot. i didnt compare Serena to anything, i just stated the fact that Serena didn't give the credit to Justine, oh and BTW Jelena's reasons are true most of the time. and yeah she's not the greates loser, but who is? everyone hates to lose