Originally Posted by terjw
Her US hard court schedule is not the problem. Her best slam is the USO and she got F SF SF 2009 - 2011. No-one will ever convince me that was a problem and she underperformed there. And I definitely could never understand this idea of playing at Stanford earlier than she intended. But when she had that injury at Wimbledon it makes even less sense to me.
The best way of making slams a priority is to start winning matches and tournaments everywhere. Not tinkering around with a US HC schedule that brought her those F SF SF USO grand slam results.
One of the worst mistakes I think team Wozniacki made in 2012 was to dismiss all those bad results saying these did not matter. Only the slams mattered now and the aim was to peak at the slams. Surprise surprise - good results at slams did not just magically appear out of a hat and were what could be expected from her level of play at the other tournaments.
Of course slams is a priority in that she hasn't got one and she got the #1. A goal but a pipedream at the moment. The immediate concern is this dreadful run of early defeats.
I've bolded out a couple of things here:
She had one massive opportunity vs Zvonareva, and posted a very abject performance, that's not good for one of the biggest matches of your career. You have to remember Caroline was better than the vast majority of the field when she posted this set of results. It's like saying Serena could play 3 straight weeks going into every major, she's still post overall good results, but her results at grand slams would decline as a result.
The second is a key thing for me. I know they said this, but for me this was just words, a cover for her form falling off the cliff. It was said when she was in a slump, at no point have they ever actually tried peaking for grand slams, what did they actually change in terms of events she was playing?
Her grand slam results have nearly always been below her tour results (2009 maybe arguable), her best results ever over a year period was QF, R4, SF, SF. That's nothing outstanding for a player who won 5 Tier I's in 2 years.
The reason for Stanford being highly recommended is Caro needs ranking points. This is a weak premier on her best surface, that isn't in the worst calendar spot ever. In her current situation she doesn't really want to be passing up such an opportunity. Caro is under big pressure the next month to deliver big results if she wants to stay top 10, which we know from last year she does, regardless if she starts releasing statements of she's "not worried about her ranking drop".