Re: YEC 2012 iSTANBUL Mission: Beat Vika/Rena, humiliate Haga and win the title.
I realize it was against 3rd rate talent in Linz, but Azarenka did what you're supposed to do against inferior opponents as a top ranked player, which is destroy them. Another easy title. No dropped sets this week. No dropped sets last week. Vika is in the same kind of zone in the middle of October that she was in back in January-March. So where's her fatigue? That's why I don't want to hear that excuse when it comes to Maria. Maria's game has deteriorated more and more as the year has gone on and she should be called on it, especially when her biggest rival is excelling.
With the exception of the occasional match like she had against Kerber, Maria continues to unload with the DFs, errors, and sloppiness against all opponents, no matter where they're ranked. Always playing down to the competition, instead of wiping the floor with scrubs, which is what she used to do.
It's good to have confidence in Maria and try to be positive, as shown with the changed thread title. But there can be a fine line between confidence and delusion. And the way these two are playing, it's delusional to think Maria will beat Vika, if they play, at the YEC. As much as I loathe Azarenka, I admire how ruthless and effortless she looks dispatching everyone lately. An amazing consistency day after day, match after match. Something we never get any more from Maria.
Maybe I am waving the white flag early, but after seeing what's happened these past two tournaments, I don't even see Serena beating Vika this time. Serena has had too long of a layoff and Vika will be hungry and confident after that tough US Open loss. Seeing her dominate like this makes me even more frustrated with Maria. She needs a great, and I mean REALLY GREAT offseason that she needs to take seriously or she will be in danger of being left in the dust permanently by Vika. I wonder if Maria and her team realize this.