I am absolutely amazed that in just one year, Jennifer Capriati's career has gone from being possibly the most dissapointing tennis career of all time, to becoming a great player, great warrior, great champion and certain tennis Hall Of Famer. She's done this all within the last year. I have never seen such an incredible career turnaround. Have you?
I was rooting hard for Martina Hingis. I wanted her to win. But Jennifer is the best player in women's tennis. She's also the toughest player in women's tennis. I have to tip my hat to Jennifer.
I hope Jennifer's amazing career turnaround opens the eyes of other players who have struggled. Even if they can't hit with Jennifer, her great comeback should be a source of inspiration for them.
I hope that this latest crushing loss for Martina doesn't have long lasting effects. But I think it will. In the 1999 French Open final against Steffi Graf, she served for the match in the second set. Just like yesterdays final against Jennifer. But the difference is that Martina didn't have 4 match points against Steffi. But she did against Jennifer. How can she ever shake this crushing loss off?
Jan 26th, 2002, 10:40 PM
The Cat in the Hat - nice post :)
Though I would still extend the best player label to Venus.
However, Jenn is surely the best fighter out there - she just never gives up.
I'm sure Martina will get through this - I hate to say it, but losing in a slam final isn't an entirely new experience for her :sad:
Jan 26th, 2002, 10:44 PM
Hmm, wonder why nice threads get ignored and trashy ones go on and on and on? :rolleyes:
Yes, it's truly incredible what Capriati has done. Personally, I never thought she'd defend her Slams, but she has - in style. She's won as many Slams as Lindsay Davenport now - and all in the space of just over a year.
If it's any consolation for Hingis, at least she knows now that she won't automatically get overpowered by Capriati, the Williamses etc. The tennis she played to go 6-4 4-0 up was EXACTLY how she should be playing against the Big Babes, and it worked a treat. Unfortunately her mental game wasn't quite up to it, and it's hard not to feel sorry for her right now. She really deserves another Slam, and though I've never been a fan, I hope she takes one this year.
Jan 26th, 2002, 10:49 PM
Great post the cat - I love being able to watch someone reach their full potential, hopefully recent events can erradicate any "what ifs?" people may have had. It's great to see a player enjoying her tennis so much, and being a gutsy fighter.
Martina had improved from last year, and I hope this knockback isn't a big one.
Jan 26th, 2002, 11:05 PM
How refreshing to see a possitive thread amongst all this negitivity.
I think Martina played great tennis and should certainly take something possitive away from this match - that being that she CAN keep up with the big hitters. Like someone said, she played the first set and a half exactly the way it should be done. She just needs to be mentally stronger when closing out matches.
Jen played great tennis from 0-4 and is now undoubtibly a great fighter! She has shown that her back to back slams last year were not just a flash in the pan.
Having said that, I can not help but to mention how sorry I feel for Martina, in fact, words can not discribe! When I explained to my mother, who doesn't follow or even understand tennis about what happened in the match, she also felt very sorry for her. I think she now understands how demanding the game of tennis actually is, especially after playing a 2h 10min match in heat upto 38 degrees C.
I can hardly spend an hour in an air conditioned gym without gasping for breath and feeling the heat. My respect for these players have gone right up.
Let's give all these players the respect and recognition they deserve!
Jan 27th, 2002, 01:23 AM
Some great thoughts guys!
I don't know if Martina can ever fully recover from this. She has now lost an amazing 5 grand slam finals in a row. And in two of those losses, she served for the title. When she was 16, Martina had great mental toughness. Now that mental toughness has faded. I would still love to see her win the career grand slam. But if she ever does make the French open final again, the pressure on her to win would be immense. And she doesn't handle the pressure of a grand slam final well anymore. I don't think anyone would disagree with that.
Becca, Venus is the best player in the world. Her head to head record with Jennifer shows that. But in the last year, Jennifer hasn't lost 1 and 1 to Hingis in a slam. Venus has. And Capriati hasn't lost in the first round of a slam. Venus has. Venus is the best player. But Jennifer has had the best results in the grand slams.
I'm still stunned at Jennifer's great comeback in the last year. She's always had alot of physical ability. But all of a sudden and out of the blue, she has developed the best mental toughness in women's tennis. How in the world did that happen?
Jan 27th, 2002, 01:31 AM
Martina won her 5 grand slams on her talent alone, she didn`t need to be mentally strong to win them, no final was a competed one(including wimbledon 97) <P>maybe when JC beat Monica in australia last year, she finally put us open 91 behind her and that made her stronger, that`s speculation but it could be
Jan 27th, 2002, 01:31 AM
the cat - I agree, the mental toughness is key: it means she can psyche herself up for the big points. Every time I see her, she's able to win the important points, whether a break point or to come back from 0-40 on her serve - by either playing excellent percentage tennis or hitting an amazing winner. (Oddly, even at Roland Garros last year she didn't have this - remember the nervy match against an out-of-form Serena?)
Conversely, though, she's not as impressive on the bread-and-butter points. I noticed in the final that she'd save three break points in a row, then serve a double fault, or hit an amazing winner at a crucial stage then spray three balls out of court. And this translates to her results generally: she excels on the big stage, at the Slams, and has the best Slam record of anyone right now. But she's only won ONE non-Slam tournament in the past year. She can dominate Slams - but can she dominate the Tour?
Jan 27th, 2002, 02:01 AM
Cat in the Hat - I don't disagree that Jenn has the best record in slams. I agree with everything you said. I simply said that I thought Venus was the best - but that Jenn is mentally toughest.
Wasn't trying to turn it into a Venus vs Jenn thing :)
Anyhow - sartrista - thats an interesting Question you pose, regarding how Jenn wil fare in non slam events. I expect she will do reasonably well in the clay season, and would be quite surprised if she didn't win a title there.
There is no reason she can't contend at Roland Garros as well.
Unless something changes between then and now though, June-September appears to belong to Venus.
I think its hard to argue that anyone else deserves the number one ranking right about now though. :)
I hope to see Jenn win some more regular tour events this season though. She apparently doesn't need them to have confidence going into slams, but it'd be nice to see a couple tier ones in there.
Jan 27th, 2002, 02:07 AM
It's amazing to think Jennifer in the space of a year now has as many slams as Lindsay. Back in 1999, and early 2000 when Lindsay was really coming on strong, I'd have never guessed she wouldn't have won another slam since that Aus title, and certainly not imagine Jennifer to equal her total...Heck, I probably wouldn't have even believed she'd have a slam to begin with at that point. It's great to see her proving that 2001 was not a fluke and she has what it takes to win many slams, because she's a real fighter out there. Great work Jen :)
As for Martina, IMO the Roland Garros loss will haunt her far more than this final will. Yes, she had matchpoints, but she lost them because Jennifer didn't give an inch, and Martina buckled under her own pressure more than anything. At Roland Garros, she served it out, was 2 points from winning and then totally collapsed mentally, ALONG with the entire crowd being against her, and booing her the rest of the match. I think that's far worse to feel like it's just you out there and nobody in an entire stadium is on your side. At least yesterday she had crowd support, and I think the fact that she didn't go down easily, and also reached the final with a bit of a comeback of her own (after the ankle surgery), she will be able to look back on this match and find some good in it despite losing.