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Old Jan 4th, 2014, 04:04 PM   #410
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Re: Aussie Open preparations in Brisbane Dec 29

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharakim View Post
I'm pretty sure that the serve is a problem for her for the rest of her career, not just against Serena, it's against anyone. Look at her runs through tournaments, one match the serve is awesome, the next match it's very bad. I agree that the inconsistency is related to Maria's mental blocks, but she has that block because of her shoulder woes. It's not that she serves scared, it's that she is serving with a surgically repaired shoulder. It needs to be constantly worked on and treated before and after matches, it can be effected by bad conditions and anxiety, in short it can help make the serve erratic.

Once that injury started to occur in early 2007 and really went bad mid 2008, her shoulder was never the same again. We will never ever see at first serve as consistent or as deadly as it was early in her career and at AO 2008. The injury is a big reason she has problems with her serve, it made her change her serving motion (something she was using since her childhood), do you realize how hard that is on a player mentally? To never 100% trust your serve again.

Whats more she has had her rotater cuff ripped up, and that pretty much gives he premenant nerve damage in the shoulder muscle. As you saw last season, it will flare up every few months from now on. all in all, Maria has done a great job turning her "bum" right shoulder into a servicable weapon again. I can't say that it will ever be as great as it once was, but it's good enough to not be a big liability in MOST matches. Still, I don't think Maria is ever scared of anything from Serena. She knows on her best day, she will need Williams to play below her best level to win, but that doesn't make her scared. If she was scared, she wouldn't even be competing. She'd have retired long ago.

So true. Maria's shoulder issues may be called "excuses" in GM by the ignorant but they are something Maria will have to deal with for the rest of her career.

Disagree about the "scared" part, though. I think Maria is especially courageous because she competes scared or not. I was extremely happy to see her play without fear in this latest match, however.
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