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?
They're all happy and excited because they only remember the years past when Caro was #1 and Zvonareva #2 (I'm sorry to say it but it's true.. they have been good, but not so good to be above anyone else...) and now that we have Maria and Serena it feels so better. But the rest of the top 10 used to be, like you say, Henin Clijsters, Davenport, Mauresmo ... the top 2 now are the only 2 left from that period, all the rest of the top 10 is so much worse than it used to be. That's why we always end up having Masha to face Serena in the finals, it's all that can happen when you think that Petra or Ana or Aga could randomly flop any day to Halep or Ula...