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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 04:00 PM   #31
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by Yoana R. View Post
She said she'll have another partner for IW (not Volchkov though)
anyone not called Volchkov is a better choice , of course of Kiefer's level

Masha's best results in 2012 were when her hitting partner was Cecil Mamiit, his ability to be a ball striking machine helped much with Masha's consistency ..... Look at how many precise lasershots DTL she hit at RG and how now she can barely hit a single DTL winner
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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 06:38 PM   #32
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by NashaMasha View Post
moreover , i didn't see anything new in Maria's game vs Serena..... Hogsted was great when it concerned clay seasons , but he absolutely ruined everything outside clay ..... Masha just after her shoulder injury despite being serveless played better on hardcourts and grass than now

Yes, this. I don't even know if it's feasible physically speaking but I wish she'd just try something entirely weird and different in these matches. As it's been said so many times before, she really has nothing to lose at this point. All I can think is maybe it's literally not possible for her to adopt a totally different style for one match.
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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 06:49 PM   #33
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by Profusion View Post
Yes, this. I don't even know if it's feasible physically speaking but I wish she'd just try something entirely weird and different in these matches. As it's been said so many times before, she really has nothing to lose at this point. All I can think is maybe it's literally not possible for her to adopt a totally different style for one match.
That's exactly what Maria said last year, she said that all year long you're working on a tactic to win matches with it and then you have to stick with it even when things aren't going your way.
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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 07:27 PM   #34
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

Now that Victoria has been able to beat Serena - hopefully it can break Masha's mental block - like If Vika can - I can too - and hopefully she can defeat Serena once or twice in the coming years

As for Masha's "stubbornness" or Thomas Hogsted's incompetence - Yeah - it's always easy to be critical when you're a bystander or wannabe coach and although I'm impressed by all the technical analyses some of you have presented here - you've to wonder how valid they really are? - Both Masha and Thomas are professionals and surely they've reviewed played matches and tried to figure out where it went wrong and what details could be improved - The truth is however - you can only improve that much - It's impossible to try and redo an entire way of playing when you're 25 years old and have been a professional since 14 years old - All you can do is to try to improve details in your game - both weaknesses and strengths - Many have noticed how Masha has improved her movement on court - she's faster - but she'll never be a Kim Clijsters or a Caroline Wozniacki - I'm a fanatic Masha fan and I believe in her will to win 100% - but sometimes the opponent is just to good - It's as simple as that - I've been watching Azarenka matches and both her and Masha's style of play are similar but Azarenka moves way better than Masha ever will - Victoria is also better in hitting the ball accurately while on the run - I'm therefor not surprised that she was the one to win a final over a healthy and in form Serena

We maybe just have to admit that Serena is a tennis phenomena - The best of her time - Yes - Masha has defeated her @ Wimbledon 2004 - only 17 years old - but maybe that was Masha's destiny - to win this one historical and unforgettable final over Serena who undoubtedly is the better player and should win 9 matches outta 10 over Masha - We can wish this and that - theorize about what Masha should improve and all sorta wishful thinkings but maybe - just maybe Masha isn't better than to be the #3 - With a little luck she can become the #1 for a shorter period of time but if I've to be honest - I think both Azarenka and Serena Williams are just the better players at the moment and Masha can only beat these 2 if they've an off day or are outta form - How's that for a theory?
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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 08:40 PM   #35
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by NashaMasha View Post
anyone not called Volchkov is a better choice , of course of Kiefer's level

Masha's best results in 2012 were when her hitting partner was Cecil Mamiit, his ability to be a ball striking machine helped much with Masha's consistency ..... Look at how many precise lasershots DTL she hit at RG and how now she can barely hit a single DTL winner


Different surface. She has more time to set up her shots on clay, that's why she's more precise and not spraying as much.
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Old Feb 18th, 2013, 11:18 PM   #36
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by doomsday View Post
Maria's tennis in 2004 was way bigger than that, she was playing so fast at the time. Her FH was way flatter than that and everything else was so smooth Maria's tennis became way too passive she needs to find the lines, go for it and try sth and not hitting really big in the middle and expecting a short ball from Serena cause that's not gonna happen Serena can counter those big shots that Maria send to her, she can do more than that cause she can even redirect the ball where she wants so Maria basically just needs to find more angles in her game.
100% agree with you
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Old Feb 19th, 2013, 12:04 AM   #37
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by NashaMasha View Post
first of all , Hogsted should be fired, it's Not Masha one-dimentional and "No plan B" player , it's Hogsted one-dimentional....

Look at his strategy vs Li - just play in the middle and let her create angles by herself , she will make huge number of errors... But Li Na was probably working during off season to close this breach in her game... As a result Masha didn't know what to do vs Li at all .....

secondly, Serena won't be in her 2012 form in 2013 and definitely not in 2014 .... She's passed her Olympic peak. Now such players as Vika, Petra and even Sloane have belief that they can beat her. All Masha needs to beat Serena is too improve , i'm sure that her YEC game would have been enough to beat "Doha's" Serena
It's the same, her game in YEC still the same
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Old Feb 19th, 2013, 02:25 AM   #38
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by Asherahpova View Post
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.
I posted this in the Doha thread but it's relevant to this discussion definitely. The problem is really with Maria's game, I don't think there is as much of a mental block as people believe here. In a lot of their matches I've seen Maria frustrated and fighting, demanding to beat her but not able to. I think she's pressed when it comes to Serena although she'll hardly show it but definitely not scared.

The main problem is just that she isn't going for any lines off the clay courts these days, and with players vs Serena and Vika who are more consistent and better athletes she needs to be so she can get them out of position.

I think her current game can work if she uses width, angles and goes for the lines but not these central shots or even when going for a winner leaving too high of a margin for error.

I think she should change hitting partners too. I've never heard anything overly impressive about Maria in practice, that she misses more than the other players etc. and now there are people here who have seen Vladmir in action and think he is unimpressive too. It makes sense considering she routinely misses 'routine' shots. She should be drilled to the point where they aren't misses.

It's no disrespect to him though, I value all that he has done for Maria and would be sad to see him go. But at the end of the day preventing Maria from stagnating game wise is more important than keeping someone on the payroll, no matter if they are a great guy or not.
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Old Feb 19th, 2013, 09:32 AM   #39
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

Actually it's everyone's problem Maria struggles against Serena because her return and reflex to Serena's serve aren't good enough and she can't defend at all.
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Old Feb 19th, 2013, 11:21 AM   #40
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by s2cruxs2 View Post
It's the same, her game in YEC still the same

game is the same, but now no consistency ..... The number of errors is mind-blowing
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Old Feb 19th, 2013, 02:20 PM   #41
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

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Originally Posted by NashaMasha View Post
game is the same, but now no consistency ..... The number of errors is mind-blowing
That is what I can't understand and is the only question mark I have about wanting her to flatten her shots out, the spin on her shots these days make them safer yet UEs are ridiculously high.
UEs are part of her game but not at these numbers.

However, she just can't afford these current tactics against Serena, she could get away with them vs. Vika on a good day but the most of the time she won't.

IDK what the solution is other than getting a better hitting partner and drilling her in practice until she makes hardly an error.

Although I do suspect that a lot of the times the UEs are a result of conflicted approaches, her instinct is to attack but in practice and tactical discussions she's told to play more conservatively. I think she's confused on the court and that isn't allowing her to have a clear enough head to focus and implement the angles Hoggy has told her to implement.
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Old Apr 14th, 2013, 08:26 AM   #42
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Re: Maria's problem against Serena Williams

I am not sure the problem comes from her spin or whatever, in rallies she is able to overpower Serena but is just mentally unable to close things up at the net. It is terrible, it feels like she is affraid of that side of the court while it is exactly what she needs regarding her serve and her power in general. There is no secret, she HAS to shorten rallies against Serena because the longer the rallies gets, the lesser her chances of winning the points are. Serena has this ability to always find a weird but killer shot even when she is not in a balanced position, she can counter attack anyone and especially Maria.
I cannot understand why her coach and even herself never thought of playing more to the net, in variations, with slice and dropshots (she's got wonderful ones but barely use them). Remember her match against Henin at RG 2010, she was serveless and yet found a way to win a set and lead the decider by rushing to the net and playing overall really clean volleys with few mistakes in that departmemnt.
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