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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 02:30 AM   #151
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

On another note, I actually didn't mind the outfit. Had a kind of retro vibe to it although such boring colours.

And thanks for the info Serfpova. Dark times but luckily masha is so good dealing with adversity
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 02:34 AM   #152
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

I think it's honestly mainly mental tbh.

Her losses here and at Wimbledon are pretty inexplicable, perhaps she's just putting too much pressure on herself. If only she hadn't have fucked up the AO, it was there for the taking, it would have left her with a lot less pressure for the rest of the season too.

All that said it would take flops at her next two tournaments before I would worry tbh.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 02:36 AM   #153
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

I am just going to bed hoping to never wake up. Good bye.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 02:37 AM   #154
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Yeh an early flop at USO would be cause for concern. Anything less than 4th/QF at least (which is a pretty shocking expectation to have given her ranking). Just sucks when you see the likes of Vika playing terrible tennis but still pulling through
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 02:38 AM   #155
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

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Originally Posted by Serfpova View Post
The loss doesn't really bother me because disgusting performances like this have been very rare these past couple of years or more.

It's annoying though that Sloane wanted to choke, and that easy FH miss on the BP for 5-4*
The loss in itself doesn't bother me that much because what you said is true, but it bothers me a lot more in the context of it pretty much ruining her US Open chances. If this had happened in Toronto, and I had the knowledge she had another warm-up tournament to get herself sorted, I'd be oK with it.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 03:25 AM   #156
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Has Maria ever lost 3 out of 4 matches in her career?

She exited 1 or 2 matches faster than I would have guessed, but the result wasn't totally unexpected. You can practice and practice all you want and say all the right things, but when you deal with an injury, a long lay-off, and a coaching change, things are going to be rough when you come back. And even though Sloane was pretty bad to start, she's a capable opponent. The ingredients for a humbling night were there.

Even though Maria looked like she was still using typical Hoggy tactics and there were no signs of a Connors influence, I maintain that this coaching change played a part in her performance. She can downplay it in the press all she wants, talking about how he's there more for emotional support and not so much tactics. But any tennis player will tell you bringing in a new coach is a monumental change and it's a process that will take considerable time. It's not like breaking in a new pair of shoes, no matter how much experience Maria has. There has to be a chemistry and that doesn't happen over night.

Obviously, I'm on record saying the Connors experiment will only hurt Maria in the long run. However, if I'm wrong about that and it ends up with success, I still think it will be a 6-12 month timetable before real championship results surface.

Many will disagree, but, yes, when she hired Connors, I did write off the rest of 2013 because I believe that the coach/player relationship takes several months to gel. Throw in the hip problem and withdrawals and you have Maria really put in a tough spot.

But I'm fine with it. I just want to sit back, take the emotion out of agonizing over whether she wins or loses and go with a more analytical perspective for the rest of the year and try to find little improvements from match to match and tournament to tournament to hang my hat on. See if she can slowly build some momentum and feel good about herself with an eye on 2014. Maria won't be a factor in New York, IMO, but maybe she can contend by the time Istanbul arrives and get some confidence and use that as a stepping stone, the way she did at the end of 2007.

I don't expect Maria to be discouraged by tonight and I think she'll only work harder.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 03:34 AM   #157
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Well tbh, Maria would've had to get very lucky at the USO under Hoggy, so even if she flops due to not being used to the coach change, I'm fine with a USO flop if he can do the things that so clearly need done to her game which should lead to a great 2014.

Most are small, basic things so I'm sure Connors can correct them. But still, it is ridiculous IMO to write off the season now.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 03:48 AM   #158
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

OMG what have I done? Deleting that thread immediately.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 03:58 AM   #159
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 04:21 AM   #160
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Okay, look. I'm not here to Troll. I don't hate Maria. Though I will throw her under the bus in relation to Serena every time and make no apologies for that, I actually like her game. So here's my question: What the hell is really going on?

She's clearly not as fit and technically she's a mess. I've never seen her dump so many balls in the net. Usually if she's making errors off the ground she hitting long. Is this hip injury more serious than we've been led to believe. That's the only reason I can think of for her pulling off on so many groundstrokes. She seemed very reluctant to staying down and hitting through the ball.

Also, there were balls that in times past she never would have given up on that she simply refused to try and get. Ultimately, I'm beginning to believe that she should have never been on the court tonight.

Anyway, again, I'm not trying to troll. If I was, I would have posted this in the GM, and it would have been open season. So...,
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 04:36 AM   #161
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Struggle Tennis

Glad I didn't stay awake for this mess.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 04:44 AM   #162
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Struggle Tennis

At least we were spared more views of that shiteous USO series outfit
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 05:31 AM   #163
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLEFIST View Post
Okay, look. I'm not here to Troll. I don't hate Maria. Though I will throw her under the bus in relation to Serena every time and make no apologies for that, I actually like her game. So here's my question: What the hell is really going on?

She's clearly not as fit and technically she's a mess. I've never seen her dump so many balls in the net. Usually if she's making errors off the ground she hitting long. Is this hip injury more serious than we've been led to believe. That's the only reason I can think of for her pulling off on so many groundstrokes. She seemed very reluctant to staying down and hitting through the ball.

Also, there were balls that in times past she never would have given up on that she simply refused to try and get. Ultimately, I'm beginning to believe that she should have never been on the court tonight.

Anyway, again, I'm not trying to troll. If I was, I would have posted this in the GM, and it would have been open season. So...,
Well, thanks for the concerns

This loss (along with the wimbledon loss) are almost reminiscent of the late 2010 years when she looked lethargic and playing inconsistent tennis.

I doubt it's anything to do with the hip injury. More like she is rusty and couldn't find the timing on her strokes (her backhand looked the worst it's ever been). Tbh, even someone as consistent as Vika couldn't find her rhythm at Carlsbad after a long lay off due to her injury.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexicola View Post
Has Maria ever lost 3 out of 4 matches in her career?
Yes, in 2010 fall. Loss to Woz at USO 4R, loss to Kimiko at Tokyo 1R, then won a match against Pironkova at Beijing R1 and lost to Vesnina in the next round.

I expected this match to be tough but never expect her to lose to Sloane. She definitely needs match plays and this loss should be yet another alarming call for her team and herself.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 06:21 AM   #164
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Glory, Hallelujah! Hardcourt Glory In The Queen City!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUBLEFIST View Post
Okay, look. I'm not here to Troll. I don't hate Maria. Though I will throw her under the bus in relation to Serena every time and make no apologies for that, I actually like her game. So here's my question: What the hell is really going on?

She's clearly not as fit and technically she's a mess. I've never seen her dump so many balls in the net. Usually if she's making errors off the ground she hitting long. Is this hip injury more serious than we've been led to believe. That's the only reason I can think of for her pulling off on so many groundstrokes. She seemed very reluctant to staying down and hitting through the ball.

Also, there were balls that in times past she never would have given up on that she simply refused to try and get. Ultimately, I'm beginning to believe that she should have never been on the court tonight.

Anyway, again, I'm not trying to troll. If I was, I would have posted this in the GM, and it would have been open season. So...,
Well, first off, I think you have to factor in rust. When you have an injury and many weeks away from competition, you're going to see sloppy tennis. We've seen the same thing with Azarenka. Even though she pulled off a few wins, she looked really bad in Carlsbad. Not as bad as Maria's 16 winner/62 UFE debacle of tonight, but she was in the 12 winner to 30+ error range in her last two matches in that tournament. She looked like Maria, being a few steps too slow with unreliable groundstrokes. And Vika didn't look to good in her first match in Cincy either. She has gotten some wins, though, and that will help her before New York. Tonight's loss was very damaging to Maria, in that it robs her of more match time to help her form. I thought she'd win 2 or 3 in Cincinnati. Bottom line, too much time off hurt her.

Next point is one I've made a couple of times here, which is the coaching change. I won't go into it too much again here, but, suffice it to say, the coaching transition is a factor and I think working with a new voice has affected her timing and precision with her game overall. Also, I don't think Maria is playing with any confidence right now. Playing well and winning breeds confidence and that semifinal win over Azarenka at RG was really the last time Maria probably felt good about herself and her game and that was a while ago.

So it's the combination of injury, layoff, withdrawals, and a new coach that led to that mess you saw against Stephens. And the only cure is more matches and more tournaments to get her timing down. All the practicing in the world won't fix what ails her. It's unfortunate that the US Open is upon her when she's in this state, but she has no choice but to push ahead and do the best she can and improve what she can.
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Old Aug 14th, 2013, 06:34 AM   #165
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Re: Cincinnati 2013: Hardcourt Struggle Tennis

not much to say here, apart from the fact that Maria couldn't find the court since being 6-2 2-0 up. She just couldn't time any of her groundies properly after that for some reason. Apart from that abysmal stretch till the end of the match, I kinda liked her ventures into the net and slices to set up volleys. She's coming into the net more and more and that is a promising sign to see. Now she just needs to find the conditioning and her usual clutchness in tight situations and she'll be good to go at the Flushing Meadows.
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