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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:17 PM   #1456
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

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Originally Posted by Mexicola View Post
I told you there was nothing to worry about with Venus before the tournament. She's still capable of brief patches of good play, but, come on, she's a has-been at this point and she looked horrendous for 95% of the match. Maria was so far superior and the scoreline was close to what I was expecting. Maria did what she should have done and I really liked her killer instinct right from the start.

But, there were things that were concerning. The way Maria got tight at the end and didn't finish it the way the should was too much like the Maria we've seen quite a bit the past few years. Making a easy match tougher on herself. And though she avoided the double faults, her first serve % was way too low. She'll need that first serve to be a more consistent weapon against the better opponents. Her winner to error ratio wasn't too bad, but she let way too many errors pile up in the second set.

And, finally, I would have preferred a more casual "been there done that" reaction after her win. She should have expected to win. She should have expected to dominate. She needs to always believe she's the best player when she walks on that court. Instead, that looked like a reaction of relief instead of expectation. But maybe Maria heard the talk about many people picking Venus to win and felt she was being disrespected and that really pumped her up and she just released the tension. Or maybe she's just haunted by all of the beatings at the hands of Serena and just couldn't contain her emotions after pounding her sister.

Whatever the case, it was a great, commanding win for Maria and I hope she builds and improves on this. She'll need to be even better.
Good grief, how do you manage, after a performance as strong as this, to only write one short paragraph of positives then 2 huge paragraphs of negatives?

So happy with how she played. It was solid all round, but her returning in particular was OUTSTANDING -- quite possibly one of the best of her career in that regard. To me, really seems like she's been working on it over the offseason, like we all wanted her to. She managed to not let Venus hit any aces atall, even though Venus was serving some pretty explosive 1st serves -- Maria even managed to swish back a great return off a 115mph serve And her returns on the 2nd serve were superb. She had BETTER bring this level of returning next time she plays Serena!

Other than her returns, I'd say the other facets of her game were "only" good rather than outstanding. Like I said in GM, up until halfway through the 2nd set it looked to me like it was going to be her forehand's best match since the surgery, but then she had that flurry of errors towards the end but I HOPE that was just a loss of concentration rather than a technical problem with the shot. I wouldn't say this was absolute Peakpova like some are saying -- she was a TAD more conservative with her play than she'll need to be against Serena/Azarenka, and her backhand wasn't quite as superb as it has been at times over the past 12 months. But still very good overall, obviously I also liked her attitude throughout the whole match -- I won't lie, at the beginning of last year's match in Rome, I kind of had the feeling Venus was slightly in her head (she made the 1st set of that match much tougher than it should've been), and I was slightly worried it might be the same this time Thankfully not.

Not taking things for granted yadayada, but I have to admit I'm fully expecting a routine win over Flipkens I do think Kerber potentially can give her a really tough match though, inspite of how one-sided their Beijing match was.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:29 PM   #1457
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

When Ana fist pumps or celebrates like that she's unsportsmanlike, OTT & desperate, when Maria does it she's intense, fired up and it just shows how much she wants it. See how that works?

If I was a hardcore Ana stan and not as level headed as I am (), I'd die laughing at the hypocrisy of some people.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:38 PM   #1458
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

It's because Ana does the 'ajde.twirl 270 degree combo' sometimes in reaction to her opponent's moonball unforced errors.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:38 PM   #1459
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:40 PM   #1460
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

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She had BETTER bring this level of returning next time she plays Serena!
Yes, and Radwanska! So frustrating watching her return Ranwanska's second serve the last couple of time they have played, she should be able to pretty much hit winners/unreturnables off it at will

My observations from today's match/tournament so far:

- Hogstedt has worked miracles on the FH in the off season, she's getting way more racket head speed on it, and just generally giving fewer weak shots from that wing, which was a problem for her at times in 2012. Movement is looking great too.

- She's actually developed some variety on the second serve! It was particularly noticeable against Venus, she hit some amazing second serves down the tee on the ad court, instead of her extremely predictable kicker to the BH. She's also been hitting a few slower second serves too which is good to see, because at times she seems unable to hit her second serve under 95mph, which is fine when it's going in, but when it's not So yeah only 1 DF in each of the last two matches is promising.

- The only criticism I would make is she still needs to improve her variety on the first serve, she still hits the vast majority of her serves to the forehand side, especially on the AD court, she needs to work on flat serves to the backhand side. Would like to see her coming in for more drive volleys too.

But overall I'm so excited about the way she's playing She definitely looks on a mission this year.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:44 PM   #1461
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

I just watched the highlights on the AO Web site.

First
Even from the few exchanges I saw, I'm quite comfortable to say that if Maria keeps hitting and moving like that, there is no doubt she can go all the way and for God's sake please bring on Serena! (alright, a bit of optimism does not hurt)

Second
The reaction of Maria on match point was perhaps intense but absolutely not disrespectful. Maria has done the same or similar after winning other matches that she considered important. Clearly, this was one of them.
The reaction from Maria's detractors is simply nonsense. Reading some of the comments and a few press releases I thought Masha was fist-pumping on Venus' face or something like that. Bollocks (sorry for the French....)
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 01:57 PM   #1462
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

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Originally Posted by Marilyn Monheaux View Post
When Ana fist pumps or celebrates like that she's unsportsmanlike, OTT & desperate, when Maria does it she's intense, fired up and it just shows how much she wants it. See how that works?

If I was a hardcore Ana stan and not as level headed as I am (), I'd die laughing at the hypocrisy of some people.
Not even close to being comparable and I am a fan of Ana.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:02 PM   #1463
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

I had to unsubscribe from that result thread, sgt.shitty is obviously having a filed day. WHAN WILL HE BE PERMABANNED? He's the worst poster ever.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:03 PM   #1464
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

LOL @ so many basic people trying to hate on me in the Rodionova thread in GM
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:03 PM   #1465
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

Am also having a few days off here and twitter. Will see you when Maria plays her next match.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:05 PM   #1466
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abuttons View Post
I just watched the highlights on the AO Web site.

First
Even from the few exchanges I saw, I'm quite comfortable to say that if Maria keeps hitting and moving like that, there is no doubt she can go all the way and for God's sake please bring on Serena! (alright, a bit of optimism does not hurt)

Second
The reaction of Maria on match point was perhaps intense but absolutely not disrespectful. Maria has done the same or similar after winning other matches that she considered important. Clearly, this was one of them.
The reaction from Maria's detractors is simply nonsense. Reading some of the comments and a few press releases I thought Masha was fist-pumping on Venus' face or something like that. Bollocks (sorry for the French....)
That's what I thought too after reading the comments and was like no maria why do that! Than I saw the video and was like wait did I miss it what was so disrespectful about it and I didn't notice any reaction from Venus about it either i don't know maybe it's just me
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:05 PM   #1467
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

Why did dsanders get banned?
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:14 PM   #1468
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

Well, that was worth waking up earlier than usual for.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:29 PM   #1469
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

There was absolutely nothing disrespectful about how Maria celebrated her win, don't let haters tell you otherwise.
I just don't understand how some of you can get so worked up over what the haters think though. Most of them act like a bunch of twelve year olds, saying the same old stuff they have been saying for about ten years now.
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Old Jan 18th, 2013, 02:30 PM   #1470
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Re: AO 2013: The Bridesmaid-Bride Double. The Sequel.

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Not even close to being comparable and I am a fan of Ana.

Yes, it is.

Maria gets louder and begins fist pumping more intensely and frequently if the match gets tight and she find herself with her back against the wall. Ana felt that way in most of her matches since '09. As her form declined her twirling went up. There's a clear correlation between the pressure she was under and her on-court behavior. Now that she's more relaxed again, so is her whole on court demeanor.
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