Originally Posted by Mexicola
We've already seen flopping from Ivanovic and Radwanska. Kvitova struggles again to a 3-set win. I have no faith in the rest of the top 20 to do anything to challenge Serena. It's continually going to be in the hands of Maria and Vika to play her in semis and finals. But with their combined 4-24 record against her, I wouldn't exactly be putting money on either right now.
I always hear the commentators talk about the great depth of the women's tour. Maybe that's true about the second and third tier. The players ranked between 20-40 are probably more talented than in previous generations. But I believe this tour is extremely thin and bereft of true championship talent near the top. The top 10-15 as a whole just aren't getting it done and that's why we see a 31-year-old dominate in ways never seen before.
You would never see Henin, Clijsters, Davenport, Hingis, Capriati, or even a Dementieva all in their primes let this happen. They had losing records against Serena, but they beat her many times and didn't get intimidated. Hingis and Henin beat her 6 times, Capriati beat her 7 times. Even weak-serving Elena beat her 5 times.
So little mental-toughness and self-belief on tour these days. It would be so boring and sad if Serena rampages easily through Rome and Roland Garros and Wimbledon.....etc. Where does it end?
Probably in Rome or FO. I know many of you will disagree with this, but Serena has been so unlucky in her career. Don't get me wrong, 15 Slams is amazing, but she missed years and years because of injuries. She struggled sometimes with coming back. lack of confidence, motivation, etc. She finds her old form back only to get re-injured and lose at a Slam. Even after all the injuries she has not lost the desire she had when she was 19/20. That speaks volumes about her.
If she had stayed healthy throughout her career she would have probably reached or eclipsed Graf by now. However, in a way injuries made her career longer and after everything she stands as the sole one (plus Venus) remaining from the old generation.
But yeah, I think she will be unlucky at the FO again. Luck has never really been on her side, she's always had to EARN her wins and have fluke wins (like Kim when she came back in the weakest era of womens tennis with Woz and Zvonareva as the top 2
). In that way, she reminds me of Maria. Maria also hasn't had anything handed on a plate to her. She has survived injuries, slumps, humiliation, but has never let that break her down which shows what a great champion she is. Today's players don't have quality and often a single match or tournament ruins their entire career.