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Old Mar 9th, 2013, 10:52 PM   #661
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

Fell 63 36 26. That she pushed Yanina to three shows that she wasn't lacking confidence! Good week for her overall.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 12:40 AM   #662
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

It was a good week overall, qualifying and winning a round. But I'm not as encouraged by the Wickmayer result as others seem to be. She blew another great chance to beat a good player by playing reckless tennis. She should have won today. I knew from the start that this was a good matchup for her and she let it slip once again.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 05:22 AM   #663
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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Originally Posted by WhatTheDeuce View Post
It was a good week overall, qualifying and winning a round. But I'm not as encouraged by the Wickmayer result as others seem to be. She blew another great chance to beat a good player by playing reckless tennis. She should have won today. I knew from the start that this was a good matchup for her and she let it slip once again.
This was a big match for her career, all things considered. Not as big as the Vinci match at Wimbledon last year, but pretty big. It would have made a huge statement, at this stage of the season, at this stage of this particular tournament, at this stage of her comeback.

A player ready to take it to the next level in the sport steps-up and brings it for a match at this sort of moment. No 45% service debacle. That's just ... well, it doesn't win against Top 50 talent.

To me, the only "encouraging" thing is how she managed to get to this match in the first place, the kind of play she has produced against strong players. I still don't know how she won the first set against Yanina. Mystified. My hunch is that her ground game has reached a new level wherein she feels she can rely on her shots -- she is hitting with more purpose (more Prpic) and that seems apparent from what I have actually seen of her matches this year.

She's just better than she was.

Now, whether that translates into the kind of breakthrough she needs or wants (a WTA-level singles title, a QF run at a Slam, Top 50 ranking) ... that remains to be seen. She won't do any of that unless she brings a solid A game to winnable matches like today. She'll likely, if she just keeps playing her current level, end up in the 70s, maybe 60s, but she wants something more tangible and has been clear about that.

She and Proic know what she needs to work on (this serve issue) and she will have to be very intense in every singles match she plays the rest of this year. Nothing less than massive focus. If so, the trajectory indicates that she will be on track to make her breakthrough pretty soon. If it should happen in Paris or on grass or at Wimbledon again: hallelujah.

But from here on, she can afford no sloppy, stupid losses and needs to beat a Top 50 player somewhere, anywhere. No losses on grass to Melanie South. But I have a hunch she is more eager than ever because surely she can tell she has a better game going on.

That part is encouraging. GL in dubs tomorrow. 1st up on Court 4 (thus far).
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 10:05 AM   #664
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

It wasn't just about the DFs. After breaking for 6-3 2-1, did she even reach deuce on Wickmayer's serve ? Almost every service game seemed to go 30-0 or 40-15 to Wickmayer . The three DF that lost Mirjana the 3-4 second set game (Wickmayer hit the ball just once in that game to break serve) and then the DF at 1-1 final set are very frustrating, but really she beat herself and the top 30 player didn't have to do much to get back in the match and then take it. The disappointing thing is she surely had Wickmayer despondent and beaten up to that point and threw it away with DFs at crucial times

The 3 wins were very encouraging and a sign that she is ready to go back in the top 100 but as always with her, it's disappointing as she wasn't blown off court or outclassed.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 10:40 AM   #665
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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It wasn't just about the DFs. After breaking for 6-3 2-1, did she even reach deuce on Wickmayer's serve ?
She didn't, Yanina obviously improved her game.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 03:44 PM   #666
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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She didn't, Yanina obviously improved her game.
Mark has a good point, but so do you: I'm not so sure how despondent she was against Miki, though she was likely baffled she lost that first set to someone serving one shitball after another.

Players of Wickmayer's caliber tend not to get despondent; they get it together. Without seeing the actual match, we can only speculate, but my guess is that Wickmayer pulled herself together, realized she should be getting her own serve in order, and Mirjana probably was the one that got despondent by a service percentage that got even WORSE. This likely distracted her on her return game and, as WTD noted, led to more scatterbrained play in the final two sets. Mirjana raised her serve % to 54% in the last set, but it nabbed her fewer games, so obviously her play went off the rails, and I suspect it was because she was horrified by her inability to serve.

Without seeing the actual match, though ... who knows?

None of these matches are easy on the WTA, anymore, playing anyone in the Top 100-150. It's important to remember that Yanina had a lot of incentive out there, too: she lost in the first round at IW last year.

Miki may have gone off the boil because of her craptastic serve on this day, but her improved ground game was enough to take a set from Wickmayer (soon back in the Top 30) because of it.

Rest assured, she is head and shoulders above where she was at this point last year, when she couldn't get a hard court win against awful players, much less Top 100 toughies. She's playing Top 60 tennis, for the most part. Now she needs that one match against a top star wherein she's got everything working reliably well (cf. the match against Bartoli last year).

She won't leave Indian Wells in the dumps, that is for sure, despite a bizarre performance against Wickmayer. The girls in the Top 30 are there for a reason: they don't scare easily. Mirjana knows that.

She'll just be more eager than ever to shore-up those deficiencies and get to the next level as quickly as possible.

It's hard for us fans, because we see she can be doing this already. Unless she gets a crappy attitude (which I highly doubt) she is not going away. This foray at IW is easily her most impressive display since Wimbledon of last year (after which she pretty much dropped off the map ... DOH! She won't this time. Losing the way she did to Yanina is not anywhere NEAR losing the way she did to Vinci -- such a gruesome anticlimactic fiasco).
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 04:11 PM   #667
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

Apart from overly aggressive serving Lucic played well. She had to be aggressive, Wickmayer was standing well into the court to hit anything short. Wickmayer was hitting very good length and width in sets two and three, though Lucic just needs consistent high level opponents to take this type of match. Everything to be encouraged by, in singles terms Wickmayer's career is better than anything Lucic has produced overall so this is a step up imo.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 06:45 PM   #668
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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... Lucic just needs consistent high level opponents to take this type of match.
A salient point from someone who apparently watched the match. We can't expect Mirjana to duke it out regularly with lesser players and then be a clear favorite to upset anyone elite. She needs to get a regular look at the top-notch opposition when her game is in good shape. So far this year she's had Safarova, Venus, and Wickmayer. She finally managed a set on the third try and, reportedly (aside from bad service strategy) was playing well.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 07:17 PM   #669
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

well... now she is playing doubles.... does anyone knows any livestream???
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 09:33 PM   #670
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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Players of Wickmayer's caliber tend not to get despondent; they get it together. Without seeing the actual match, we can only speculate, but my guess is that Wickmayer pulled herself together, realized she should be getting her own serve in order, and Mirjana probably was the one that got despondent by a service percentage that got even WORSE. This likely distracted her on her return game and, as WTD noted, led to more scatterbrained play in the final two sets. Mirjana raised her serve % to 54% in the last set, but it nabbed her fewer games, so obviously her play went off the rails, and I suspect it was because she was horrified by her inability to serve.
Yanina isn't a player who tends to come back from a set down to win matches and the last time she managed it was 8 months ago against Heather Watson and none of the 30 matches she has played, since that match, have seen her come back from a first set loss to win.

Some of Wickmayer's more recent results include these losses: 3-6 7-6 6-2 to Voskoboeva, 6-2 6-2 to Oprandi, 6-1 6-1 to Lauren Davis, 7-6 6-3 to Parmentier, 6-4 6-3 to Dellacqua. 6-2 6-2 to Gavrilova.

The 3-4 second set game saw Wickmayer hit the ball once to break serve. Brie Whitehead would probably have broken serve in that game ! . Yesterday's result was reminiscent of the 2011 matches with AMG, Cibulkova and Cirstea where winning positions were gone as quickly as they came and it's so frustrating.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 10:23 PM   #671
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

her downfall in the second set against Wickmayer was an atrociously low first serve percentage. She served 25% in the second set and at one point I think during her second service game it was at 12%. Sure, she DFd a lot but she was hitting a ton of second serves. If she had just served at 50-60% in the second set she could have won or reached a tiebreak. I don't think Wickmayer suddenly played lights out.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 11:41 PM   #672
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

No, I don't think Yanina had to do anything special beyond her basic Top 30 talent to put Mirjana away on a day of serving horrors. Mirjana clearly could not get the serve together and it cost her, as we know.

And who the heck is Brie Whitehead? A tennis player on the WTA? Who would name their child after a French cheese when the last name already hints at an infected zit? I may have to look her up, unless you're kidding.

It's like having a tennis player named Camembert Carbuncle or some such.
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Old Mar 10th, 2013, 11:58 PM   #673
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

Good tournament! Both singles and doubles. Now with points to defend in miami and charleston.
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Old Mar 11th, 2013, 01:00 AM   #674
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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And who the heck is Brie Whitehead? A tennis player on the WTA? Who would name their child after a French cheese when the last name already hints at an infected zit? I may have to look her up, unless you're kidding.
You don't know Brie Whitehead?!?!?

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/...erID=100079416 (Go to the "Activity" tab, then click "View All")
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Old Mar 11th, 2013, 03:04 AM   #675
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Re: Mirjana's spring 2013 campaign

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You don't know Brie Whitehead?!?!?

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/...erID=100079416 (Go to the "Activity" tab, then click "View All")
No I certainly had never heard of her and wouldn't have believed such a record unless I had seen it with my own eyes. I totally missed her "era" ... But I was not on tennisforum during her ... um ... heyday? That may be a reason why.

Good grief, more bagels than a Brooklyn deli. The stunner was that I clicked on one of the three girls this Brie happened to BEAT (an equally unfortunately named girl called Diamond Jackson) and this girl only played that one match, ever. Lost to Whitehead. Retired forthwith. Who wouldn't, I suppose?

Wow. The only sort of "joke player" I ever heard about or was aware of before this was a girl named Monique Viele (not sure the spelling is correct) who was hyped to the moon back in the 90s (or so) and proved to be simply atrocious. Almost as if she was a publicity stunt or something.

Well, no more making fun of Alexandra Stevenson for me.

Mirjana has a slew of points to defend indeed, upcoming, but not many "big" points and, with her current form I have to believe she will be able to improve upon last year and even make some gains before the French Open rolls around. How fabulous if she can finally win a couple of rounds (or better) in Paris. Then, REALLY gun it at all the grass events with her newfound drive.

That Melanie South loss is like a ... well, a festering brie whitehead. GL in Miami and beyond, Mirjana!

Onward and upward with Prpic to guide you!
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