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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:05 PM   #946
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

^when did he ever say that?
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:10 PM   #947
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Icky80 View Post
There's hardly a great divide between Renka and Shar, but there's no denying that the former is currently the better player. Beating Serena does not give her great separation from Sharapova, especially a Serena who was not at top form. Tennis is all about match-ups. And Renka matches up better with Serena. They don't have as much history as Serena and Maria do. And in order to beat Serena, even a Serena not nearly at her best, you gotta be able to move. Shar can't. But before the WTA becomes all about the "big 2" Shar has got to get it together. I'm fearing that her lack of confidence against Serena and to a degree Azenrenka will bleed into her other match-ups and we might see her ranking slip further.
Nobody say beating one player makes the other one best. The way she tackled Li in AO-2013 final was too good to ignore. The way she handled yesterday Aga was superb. Maria also beaten Aga at last year YEC -2012 but the scoreline. Also 2012 Maria has been regarded as better Maria after 2008.When did Vika was bagled by any player including Serena like Maria was bagled in hands of Rena at Olympics 2012(6-0,6-1 scoreline.)
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:36 PM   #948
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

I agree with both dsanders and TheDawnTreader in a way.
I do think it was necessary for Maria to add more spin on to her shots after the 2010 horror days because she just didn't have the serve or the consistency to play that offensively. However, it is definitely hurting her in her matchup with Vika and Serena on hard. I mean every time she just hits a FH off a big shot of Serena's I'm semi-cringing waiting to see how high the ball will bounce, knowing it's gonna land right in the strike zone.

And what Pavstry said is also completely correct, it just makes it worse that she hits it deep and central. Maybe the added spin wouldn't be as much of an issue if she actually used the lines but she doesn't, no angles, no width. Everything goes central.

I do think it might be time for Thomas to try and flatten out the strokes again, she has the serve to set them up these days, plus I feel like she's so stranded mentally a lot of the time, her instinct is to attack but Thomas has given her a slightly more conservative game so she get's confused between instincts and practice. Never moving forward, letting a lot of balls bounce first instead of drive volley, completely backtracking from the net and stranding herself mid court. We've all seen her do this in every match.

I do think her current game style needs to stay for the clay, there are very few people who will be able to beat her if she plays well on it. But I don't get why they don't seem to realise, different surface different tactics. I do know Thomas has said to her numerous times 'where are the angles we practiced?' so maybe it's just down to Maria not doing as instructed but I don't believe that would happen in every single match she plays.

While serve, movement, FH, have all seemed to improve this season for the most part. I think there's been a stagnation tactics wise. Maria just simply does not have the movement to defend spin loaded shots on a hard court like Nadal does. I really hope he does get her to flatten out her shots again, I mean she was doing it last OG very well so she can do it, it would would wonders for the nonexistent BH DTL. Before it comes to that though, I want to see what effect actually implementing the angles and using width can do for her vs. Serena and Vika.

It's tough I don't want the BBB 2010 inconsistency off the ground but she's always gonna come off a very distant second to Rena away from clay these days. This Maria can still beat Vika on her good days but as we've seen in those matches too, she wins the points where she steps in and flattens it out.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:38 PM   #949
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Icky80 View Post
There's hardly a great divide between Renka and Shar, but there's no denying that the former is currently the better player. Beating Serena does not give her great separation from Sharapova, especially a Serena who was not at top form. Tennis is all about match-ups. And Renka matches up better with Serena. They don't have as much history as Serena and Maria do. And in order to beat Serena, even a Serena not nearly at her best, you gotta be able to move. Shar can't. But before the WTA becomes all about the "big 2" Shar has got to get it together. I'm fearing that her lack of confidence against Serena and to a degree Azenrenka will bleed into her other match-ups and we might see her ranking slip further.
When you look at the massive amount of points Maria has to defend in the next few months, her ranking will slip if she doesn't take a hard look at herself in the mirror and start taking her game more seriously.

So far, 2013 is unfolding like 2012. Vika comes out looking invincible on hard courts and Maria is having late round frustration. Victoria will be the huge favorite at Indian Wells as defending champ and Serena will be back for Miami. Are we going to have to pin our hopes on clay again to turn Maria's year around? I don't like the idea of relying on what is still Maria's worst surface. She needs to step it up big time now or be left in Serena and Vika's wake.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:45 PM   #950
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexicola View Post
When you look at the massive amount of points Maria has to defend in the next few months, her ranking will slip if she doesn't take a hard look at herself in the mirror and start taking her game more seriously.

So far, 2013 is unfolding like 2012. Vika comes out looking invincible on hard courts and Maria is having late round frustration. Victoria will be the huge favorite at Indian Wells as defending champ and Serena will be back for Miami. Are we going to have to pin our hopes on clay again to turn Maria's year around? I don't like the idea of relying on what is still Maria's worst surface. She needs to step it up big time now or be left in Serena and Vika's wake.
How can you say that when post-injury comeback she's won 8 titles which includes 5 on clay (one being a slam)
Id say her current game style plays to:

1. Slow HC
2. Clay
3. Fast HC
4. Grass
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 06:50 PM   #951
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Maria's current game is perfectly adapted to clay, she's only ever going to be vulnerable playing timidly and poorly against a BBB (see RG 2012 R4). That or if she plays Stosur/Li and a couple of others who are good on clay also as they are basically the only ones who can do anything against her if her is game is on on the surface.

In fact game wise the only weakness is that you can still exploit her movement to the FH side but I hope she masters the slide into it this season, and develops a legitimate FH slice.

EDIT: To elaborate, everything just suits her game on clay. She's more time to set up and the higher bounce is right in her strike zone so she can really lay into the ball and actually hit the lines unlike on hard, plus she takes advantage of the bounce, loading on the spin especially on her FH side. There were numerous points last year where her opponents were there in time to get the ball, the problem was it was almost over their head, plus it allows her to use heavy spin and pace while still giving herself good margin for error until the right opening comes meaning her balls can't be attacked while she doesn't risk needlessly over doing it. AND she uses angles on clay.

Also, this isn't aimed at anyone in here but the whole 'how the mighty have fallen' attitude from GM tards when we look forward to the clay never fails to amuse me. I love how that Maria is the best on clay, I always wanted her to maximize her game on it and it is only more impressive considering how she started off on the surface. Last season was surreal yes, but there's no shame in clay being Maria's best surface just because it didn't used to be.
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Last edited by jameshazza : Feb 17th, 2013 at 07:23 PM.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:21 PM   #952
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cosmic Voices View Post
How can you say that when post-injury comeback she's won 8 titles which includes 5 on clay (one being a slam)
Id say her current game style plays to:

1. Slow HC
2. Clay
3. Fast HC
4. Grass
Has it been 8 titles? I thought it was 7. I guess it doesn't really matter. Either way, it seems like a small number of titles to win over a 4 year period. As a comparison, Serena has won 8 titles since last summer and Vika has won 8 since last January.

It's so hard for Maria to win tournaments anymore. While everything looks easy and effortless right now for the "Big 2", Maria has to grind and grind and grind for every trophy she can get. And it does make every title she earns more special because you know how extra hard she has to work to beat the top players with her limitations. That's why I treat every tournament she's in as almost a major because I know how difficult it is for her, even though I keep hoping for improvements in her game.

As for clay, maybe I'm the one in denial. It's hard to erase all that I saw from her in the first 8 or 9 years on that surface. And all the memories of seeing Maria excel on fast courts, racking up the vast majority of her titles. Maybe I have to come to terms with what Maria is as a player these days, which is a slow court specialist. I guess we'll learn a lot about the state of her game this spring.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:25 PM   #953
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

I still think other courts play to her strengths more but clay does play to her strengths these days while masking her weaknesses and inconsistencies of the ground game more than any other surface.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:28 PM   #954
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

I agree with Mexicola/Craigster to some extent. Where I disagree is I still think, in terms of game, she is capable of being better than Princessrenka, on the basis of what she's shown on her best days over the past 12 months -- but it's hard to argue with results, and Princess has just been that bit better in virtually every aspect than Maria since 2012


(Gosh, I'm starting to sound like an Ivanovic stan by ascribing everything to Maria's mentality )
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:30 PM   #955
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

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Originally Posted by dsanders06 View Post
I agree with Mexicola/Craigster to some extent. Where I disagree is I still think, in terms of game, she is capable of being better than Princessrenka, on the basis of what she's shown on her best days over the past 12 months -- but it's hard to argue with results, and Princess has just been that bit better in virtually every aspect than Maria since 2012


(Gosh, I'm starting to sound like an Ivanovic stan by ascribing everything to Maria's mentality )
I've never seen you this pessimistic when it comes to Maria (not referring to this post in particular, just in general the past couple days)
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:35 PM   #956
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

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Originally Posted by Mexicola View Post
Has it been 8 titles? I thought it was 7. I guess it doesn't really matter. Either way, it seems like a small number of titles to win over a 4 year period. As a comparison, Serena has won 8 titles since last summer and Vika has won 8 since last January.

It's so hard for Maria to win tournaments anymore. While everything looks easy and effortless right now for the "Big 2", Maria has to grind and grind and grind for every trophy she can get. And it does make every title she earns more special because you know how extra hard she has to work to beat the top players with her limitations. That's why I treat every tournament she's in as almost a major because I know how difficult it is for her, even though I keep hoping for improvements in her game.

As for clay, maybe I'm the one in denial. It's hard to erase all that I saw from her in the first 8 or 9 years on that surface. And all the memories of seeing Maria excel on fast courts, racking up the vast majority of her titles. Maybe I have to come to terms with what Maria is as a player these days, which is a slow court specialist. I guess we'll learn a lot about the state of her game this spring.
Tbh, even before the surgery, she was declining on grass in particular. I've said it before, and some people have disagreed with me, but I really see the big decline in her grass game as starting in 2006, after she'd that growth spurt -- even though she moved pretty well on most surfaces that year, her movement in her matches at Wimbledon against Pennetta and Mauresmo was noticeably worse than in previous years (some of those attempts to return Mauresmo slices were ).

I do agree with people who say her game is a very good fit for clay (I do still wonder if she's maybe a bit better on Plexicushion at her best though), because it's just beyond doubt at this point that surfaces that give her that little bit more time to set her feet right and have a full swing makes her a lot more comfortable.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:37 PM   #957
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

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Tbh, even before the surgery, she was declining on grass in particular. I've said it before, and some people have disagreed with me, but I really see the big decline in her grass game as starting in 2006, after she'd that growth spurt -- even though she moved pretty well on most surfaces that year, her movement in her matches at Wimbledon against Pennetta and Mauresmo was noticeably worse than in previous years (some of those attempts to return Mauresmo slices were ).

I do agree with people who say her game is a very good fit for clay (I do still wonder if she's maybe a bit better on Plexicushion at her best though), because it's just beyond doubt at this point that surfaces that give her that little bit more time to set her feet right and have a full swing makes her a lot more comfortable.
I totally agree and I noticed it too. Maria's movement on grass was never the same after 2005.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:49 PM   #958
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

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Maria hasn't won a tournament off of clay in almost 2 years. In 2008, she won the AO in straight sets. She hasn't won a TITLE in straight sets since Memphis 2010.

So, to be blunt, her problems when facing Serena have much less to do with Serena being Serena and more to do with the fact that Sharapova just isn't in the form that she was in when she was won those 6 sets in her career over Serena. She's got her own business to take care of before she can even think about beating Serena again.
A rare gem from a pile of rubbish that is the GM result thread. Couldn't have said it better myself. I think most of us, including Maria herself, seem to be getting carried away with the whole "She has to beat Serena1111" mantra. The problem is not just Serena, but Maria herself and her game.

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Hopefully Masha will get at least one win over Serena this year
I like your avatar! Vintagepova

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GM is a kindergarten. I went briefly through the results thread and it's worse than I expected. Those Serena trolls seem to have nothing better to do in life but to hate on every single player who dared to beat Serena in the past, the latest example being Sloane Stephens. Well, sad to see that Wimbly final is still under their skin
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Vika too, but she gets a pass cause of US final where she did nothing except benefiting from Serena's choke.
Good. Now choke on the bitter truth that is today's final and gag
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 07:59 PM   #959
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

Well, I still think it's a mental thing.
Not so much about Serena, but mostly about her shoulder. She's never been the same after her shoulder injury. At least not with her 'I'm gonna beat you no matter how good you play' attitude she had back in the day.

There is a reason why players are never the same after having surgery. I'm just happy Maria got her career Slam, and still has the potential to win more.
But she has to work on whatever is holding her back, and I don't think she needs to look at her game for that.
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Old Feb 17th, 2013, 08:00 PM   #960
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Re: SemiPova returns to flop in Doha. GSM Serena 6-3 6-2.

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Good. Now choke on the bitter truth that is today's final and gag
OMG
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