Re: stuttgart 2012
I don't know exactly why Pova did so well in the 2011 Clay Court Season. It seems that just a bunch of things came together:
Part of it was, of course, confidence in her improved fitness.
Another part was her improving serve.
Some of it was due to opponents's intimidation and surprise at seeing the Russian Amazon aggressively covering the clay court.
A not insignificant factor was her improving ClayPlay.
And finally, playing with a relaxed, no pressure, no expectations "que sera, sera" attitude.
This year, for her sins, she has the Rome Title and RG Semifinal to defend. Serious stuff! Pressure!
Further, more pressure comes from her personal pursuit of the career slam. Time is running out.
Even more pressure piles up in the prospect of meeting old demons like the WS and Kim and the new demons of Vika, Petra and ARad.
And finally, the pressure of getting a big title after coming so close three times already this year.
Her success on clay this year depends on how she manages these "privledges", as BJK would say. If she uses these pressures as motivation to step it up and play her intense, high octane, ferocious all out game, she could be wildly successful.
If she continues to play a little hesitant, a little reserved, a little safe, a major success will continue to elude her.
Maybe that's what's wrong with her game: and imbalance between "patience" on the one hand and "first strike" on the other.
C'mon, Pova! Head High, Shoulders Back, Tits Up. It's MashaFierce time right now!