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  Topic Review (Newest First)
Jan 19th, 2013 10:51 PM
kusiak
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

I think Maria was in her best shape when she won that Wimbledon against Serena in the final. Serena had a lot of great periods, but yeah right now both look fresh, fit and ready to play amazing tenis. I think you can also add Agnieszka - she is close to her best shape especially stamina, she looks like she can play marathon matches without dropping her level down. Azarenka looks slightly worse than in 2012 but it could easily change in the next rounds.
Jan 19th, 2013 10:42 PM
Andy.
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

More than anything I would love to see the two biggest stars in womens sports play a great match. You know Serena is going to being it if she makes the final. I just want Maria to not go out there scared and play like she did against Venus with intensity, passion and guts and give Serena a match for a change. I dont expect her to win but I want something more along the lines of the YEC final last year (even closer would better). It would be so good for the WTA.
Jan 19th, 2013 10:39 PM
Stamp Paid
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olórin View Post
I can never concede that Serena is a better shot maker, and therefore overall player, today than she was 10 years until she wins the French Open again. Back then her game was equally deadly on all surfaces, and the new Super-Serena still has to show that. She was INSANE off the ground for all of 2002, especially during her US Open title and clay season. No-one could forget some of the rallies at the French against Capriati. I haven't seen anything off the ground yet on that level from 2012-2013 Serena yet.

Of course you're completely right that in many aspects there has been a huge improvement, which is insane that Serena can actually get better at 31 years old.
Yes!


*watches and plays Pour It Up on repeat*
Jan 19th, 2013 10:24 PM
Olórin
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by RYNJ View Post
I have been following Venus and Serena's career from the the very beginning and serena is a muh better tennis play now than she was in 2002. By looking at her unforced error to winner ratio most of the time today she hits more winners than ue. Her serve is much better today also, I don't think Serena ever got past 119 mph during her 2002-2003 form. Her volleys are much better today also it's like day and night I used to cringe when serena was up at net especially hitting and overhead. (Watch Serena's matches in 2002-2003 her overheads will make you cringe. All I can say about her 2002-2003 form was that she was a better athlete than she is today which allowed her to dominate.
I can never concede that Serena is a better shot maker, and therefore overall player, today than she was 10 years until she wins the French Open again. Back then her game was equally deadly on all surfaces, and the new Super-Serena still has to show that. She was INSANE off the ground for all of 2002, especially during her US Open title and clay season. No-one could forget some of the rallies at the French against Capriati. I haven't seen anything off the ground yet on that level from 2012-2013 Serena yet.

Of course you're completely right that in many aspects there has been a huge improvement, which is insane that Serena can actually get better at 31 years old.
Jan 19th, 2013 10:17 PM
nelsondan
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Maria's thighs look slightly larger to me, with nothing added around her middle.If that is the case, it took some pretty disciplined training. She looks more confident about hitting hard shots, close to the edges of the court. More consistent.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:40 PM
Break My Rapture
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominic View Post
To be honest I didn't think Maria was THAT impressive against Venus, especially towards the end, a lot of UE
Yeah, that was a lesser note to end on, but the purple patch she hit from the end of the first set up to 5-1 in the second set was mighty good.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:36 PM
The Dawntreader
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig. View Post
Sounds good to me
It would've taken a huge act of physical and mental attrition for Azarenka to replicate the sort of form she exhibited at the start of '12. Even then, it only lasted about 3 months.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:33 PM
Craig.
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Griffin. View Post
I meant only from a physical standpoint, I wasn't talking about Serena as a player.



I agree. She doesn't look nearly as impressive in general as she did last year.
Sounds good to me
Jan 19th, 2013 09:29 PM
Stonerpova
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dawntreader View Post
Smarter- yes. Better ballstriker, better returner, better match-player? No. That's no insult though. It just shows you how insane her level was a decade ago. She was basically unplayable.

Sharapova still isn't the same player that she was 5-6 years ago.
I meant only from a physical standpoint, I wasn't talking about Serena as a player.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gc-spurs View Post
Adding to the 'in shape' talk, Serena and Maria are looking impressive but I reckon Vika is not looking as fit this year. I remember seeing her last year on the practice courts in Melbourne and being so impressed by her physique, taken aback by how good she looked even. But I saw her again this year and she is no way near as impressive looking physique wise as she was last year.
I agree. She doesn't look nearly as impressive in general as she did last year.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:24 PM
gc-spurs
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Adding to the 'in shape' talk, Serena and Maria are looking impressive but I reckon Vika is not looking as fit this year. I remember seeing her last year on the practice courts in Melbourne and being so impressed by her physique, taken aback by how good she looked even. But I saw her again this year and she is no way near as impressive looking physique wise as she was last year.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:12 PM
RYNJ
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

I have been following Venus and Serena's career from the the very beginning and serena is a muh better tennis play now than she was in 2002. By looking at her unforced error to winner ratio most of the time today she hits more winners than ue. Her serve is much better today also, I don't think Serena ever got past 119 mph during her 2002-2003 form. Her volleys are much better today also it's like day and night I used to cringe when serena was up at net especially hitting and overhead. (Watch Serena's matches in 2002-2003 her overheads will make you cringe. All I can say about her 2002-2003 form was that she was a better athlete than she is today which allowed her to dominate.
Jan 19th, 2013 09:01 PM
RVD
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Dawntreader View Post
Smarter- yes. Better ballstriker, better returner, better match-player? No. That's no insult though. It just shows you how insane her level was a decade ago. She was basically unplayable.

Sharapova still isn't the same player that she was 5-6 years ago.
I respect your opinion, but Serena has improved in all of these areas, because she's HAD to.

Since she's older, and since her speed is visually a step below (compared to her 2001-2003 form), she has had to improve other areas to compensate.
I'm not arguing with you though. I'm simply saying that we both see a different Serena when watching her play today as opposed to 2001-2003. The Serena of today is so much more polished and balanced than her 2001-2003 prime years. I have old tapes from back then, and though I agree that she was scary, she's even more scary today what with her patience, improved court sense, and even mentality.
She's been through a lot to get to this point, and has made improvements in areas that I originally prayed that she would. Particularly in the areas of net play, slice returns, and lobs.
Jan 19th, 2013 08:49 PM
The Dawntreader
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Griffin. View Post
I don't think Serena will ever be as fast as she was pre-2003, but she seems to be better in all other aspects.
Smarter- yes. Better ballstriker, better returner, better match-player? No. That's no insult though. It just shows you how insane her level was a decade ago. She was basically unplayable.

Sharapova still isn't the same player that she was 5-6 years ago.
Jan 19th, 2013 08:47 PM
RVD
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig. View Post
I thought she played a solid, smart match for about a set and a half (served, returned and moved beautifully), but there were a few too many errors once Venus picked it up a bit.
I attributed that dip (of Sharapova's) to nerves, as Venus tends to historically turn-it-on at odd times during a match. And she's (Venus) especially scary when coming to the net, as she did in the 2nd set.

I got the sense that her illness was sapping her, and was exacerbated in that Australian heat, but I can't be certain, as I wasn't there to judge properly.

What is certain, however, is that she played awful throughout...even after that short improvement in play at 2-5(?) in the 2nd.
Jan 19th, 2013 08:43 PM
Stonerpova
Re: Serena and Maria are in the best shape ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asherahpova View Post
Maria is definitely at her physical peak, she's never been better at recovering from matches or had such high endurance levels and her movement is always improving. Hopefully the days of Maria moving slower than Robson are gone for good.

Serena is in great shape too although I'm not sure whether she's physically just as good as she was in 2002-2003 but the current level is still damn impressive.
I don't think Serena will ever be as fast as she was pre-2003, but she seems to be better in all other aspects.
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