Originally Posted by MM_1257
Maybe I didn't express myself well. I think Maria slowly reached/is reaching her mental peak... There is a lot of physical and mental effort invested in her tennis since 2008... And I think she is starting to crack up slightly... She is much more expressive, gets nervous and impatient and unsatisfied more easily than before surgery... This year even more evident than before... But maybe I am wrong.. Maybe I have just forgotten how it was before...
I agree with you saying that this year she's been more nervous/expressive/unsatisfied.
What I DON'T agree with is that it necessarily has to stay that way. Players are able to work on mental blocks -- look at Federer, he was choking matches left and right for most of 2011, and then he took a couple of months off working with his coach on how to stay calm in matches, and since then he's been able to stay mentally tough enough to win 2 of 3 matches against his bogeyman Nadal and has generally held his nerve in crunch matches.
(And no, I'm not saying Maria is anywhere close to Federer in terms of tennis talent, but I DO think she's mentally tougher in general than Federer has ever been, so the analogy stands I think.)
Besides, Vika is better than Kerber, so Kerber's match was so good to see, but it means nothing for the Maria vs. Vika matchup... In the latter Maria ends up being frustrated because Vika takes her game away from her and Maria is forced to do more even better in order to beat her and that is where the errors and impatience come in.
At the risk of sounding like a sore loser, there really is no doubt in my mind that Maria would've beaten Azarenka had she played like she did against Kerber
Yes, Vika's better than Kerber, but not so much that she would've been able to hang with Maria in that form.