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Old Jun 5th, 2013, 09:47 PM   #1
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Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Time to move on from clay for 2013 and onto Grass. Can we hope for better luck and results this year?
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Old Jun 6th, 2013, 12:51 AM   #2
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

There is always hope when it comes to Sam. Regardless of her track record and self-admitted discomfort on grass, she could surprise us all this time around. The best thing about the grass season for Sam is that everyone's expectations are not set very high. There isn't nearly as much pressure on her, and we all know that when she plays like there's nothing to lose, she tends to retain more confidence in herself.

Plus....we know she's made it to London and will hopefully be preparing herself accordingly in the weeks leading up to Wimby. I say, bring on the grass!
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Old Jun 6th, 2013, 04:46 AM   #3
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

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Originally Posted by Sinclair
There is always hope when it comes to Sam. Regardless of her track record and self-admitted discomfort on grass, she could surprise us all this time around. The best thing about the grass season for Sam is that everyone's expectations are not set very high. There isn't nearly as much pressure on her, and we all know that when she plays like there's nothing to lose, she tends to retain more confidence in herself
Yeah, if she can just relax and execute her game, she might eventually recognise that there are actually quite a few elements to her playing style that become big weapons on grass.

I worry about Sammy on this surface because I think almost everyone on tour will see playing her on grass as one of their best opportunities for a win over a top player; I'm sure that almost any opponent she faces will go out on court hyper-motivated and willing to fight until the last point. It also seems to be the case that when she's a little bit tight, she doesn't make the necessary adjustments to compensate for the low bounce and fast court, and either reverts to plan A (which doesn't work so well on grass) or panics and charges the net at the wrong times.

Anyway, I think because Sam was robbed of her RG win at age 29, she now will win Wimbledon instead. As Huntress said in the other thread, the last time she got knocked out R3 of a grand slam tournament some lovely things happened
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Old Jun 6th, 2013, 06:06 AM   #4
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

I'm really wondering what Sam's mindset is going into Wimbledon this year. I think anything is possible, ranging from "I really don't give a fuck, but will turn up to play because that's what I'm expected to do" to "This year I'm going to pull out all the stops and finally show myself and the world that I can play great tennis on grass".

Adomoose's spy's sighting of Sam in London gives some hope that it might be the latter. I think the fact that she's gone straight to London, as opposed to e.g. DT's place in Liechtenstein, suggests she wants to maximize her training time on grass. And the fact that she still hasn't entered any lead-ups, and has apparently stated that she doesn't plan to, suggests that she thinks that the best way to do that is practice, practice and more practice.

That could well be a good strategy, after all, most of the top players don't play a lead-up tourney. But the catch is that unless Sam plays next week, she will go to Wimbledon seeded 14 or lower, which will almost guarantee she'll run into one of the top 4 in R4 if she gets that far. No matter how well she practices, I really can't see her getting past any of the top 4 on grass, even Aga.

So even though getting to R4 would be the best she's ever done, if that's the best conceivable result I can't see the point of practicing every day for 2-1/2 weeks to do that. Pointswise she'd be better off entering Birmingham, and maybe Eastbourne as well, and just going to Wimbledon to swing her racquet and see how that gets her.

Sorry for being so negative, but I just get the feeling that Sam is losing the plot a little bit atm.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 05:33 AM   #5
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

I think we can rule out a WC for Sam for Birmingham or Nuremberg, if she was going to request one she surely would have done so by now.

I'm sure Sam has her reasons for what she's doing, but I can't help feeling she's made a big mistake here. There has probably not been a worse time in the last 10 years to be seeded outside the top 12 at slams. The current 4 is so consistent, they are practically a sure thing to reach at least the QF at every slam they enter (RG being a partial exception because Aga sucks so much on clay).

Sam could have easily secured a top 12 seeding by playing Birmingham. Now there is no chance of that, which basically means that R4 is the best result she can expect to achieve, since that's the round where she's as good as certain to run into one of the top 4.

In itself not a disaster, R4 would be her best ever result. But with a view to the USO she really needs to start doing everything she can to get her ranking back up. The longer she stays down where she is, the harder it's going to become to have a deep run at any big tournament, because she's going to start running into those same players early in the draw.

And that will make it increasingly hard for her to move back up, especially since every single other player in her rankings range routinely vulture as many small tournaments as the rules allow them to.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 06:04 AM   #6
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

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Originally Posted by stromatolite View Post
I'm sure Sam has her reasons for what she's doing, but I can't help feeling she's made a big mistake here.
Now if only she would tell her loyal fans what they are

I'm still crossing my fingers for that Birmingham wildcard - but it does seem pretty unlikely at this late stage. I've been thinking about it over the past two or three days, and I still really can't come up with any convincing explanation for her missing a lead up tournament. As you've pointed out, it makes a heap of sense rankings-wise, it would help her recover from her lack of matchplay this year, it would help her adjust to the pressure of playing on a grass court ...

Again, I think this is probably a decision that she's made a while ago, when she didn't know what the rankings situation would be. But given the current circumstances, I find it hard to see how playing Birmingham would be anything but a benefit.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 06:27 AM   #7
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

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Now if only she would tell her loyal fans what they are

I'm still crossing my fingers for that Birmingham wildcard - but it does seem pretty unlikely at this late stage. I've been thinking about it over the past two or three days, and I still really can't come up with any convincing explanation for her missing a lead up tournament. As you've pointed out, it makes a heap of sense rankings-wise, it would help her recover from her lack of matchplay this year, it would help her adjust to the pressure of playing on a grass court ...

Again, I think this is probably a decision that she's made a while ago, when she didn't know what the rankings situation would be. But given the current circumstances, I find it hard to see how playing Birmingham would be anything but a benefit.
I find this a bit worrying as well. Other than Adomoose's sharp-eyed friend, nobody has seen or heard from Sam since she exited RG. In my experience she usually posts something on her FB page within a few days after a disappointing loss, but as far as I can see she hasn't posted anything there.

In combination with Bertrand's ominous post a few days ago I can't help worrying that there may be more amiss than meets the eye.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 07:03 AM   #8
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Yes, Bertrand's cryptic message and sudden disappearance has made the situation even more mysterious. I think he's probably going to try and extort money out of us for his intel in a few days time
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 10:41 AM   #9
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Sam has taken a WC into Eastbourne.

Birmingham would have been better seedings-wise, but I'm still SO happy about this

Go Sammy!
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:03 PM   #10
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Good decision Sammy

Eastbourne always has a tough draw, but at least she has some positive mojo going on there with her continual SF runs.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:17 PM   #11
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Good news! Any idea when the draw is done for Eastbourne? Pretty tough field though. Hope the draw is kind to Sammy.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:21 PM   #12
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

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Sam has taken a WC into Eastbourne.

Birmingham would have been better seedings-wise, but I'm still SO happy about this

Go Sammy!
Awesome! There's still tickets left for Eastbourne...I might try to get there and do the stalking . No promises though!
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:25 PM   #13
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

Hooray for the WC! She really needs this right now.

As far as Bert's cryptic post about Sam's team....all I can say is that if he knows or observed something amiss, he will try to reveal it in a way that is the least "damaging" for Sam and/or her fans. I don't think he's the type of person to jump to conclusions, so maybe he is contemplating all the explanations of whatever it was before mentioning something here. Perceptions are not always reality.

On a completely different note.....yesterday I was watching some of the Masha/Vika match, and Martina was doing the commentary. One thing that she said about Masha's play in the final set was that "She was playing to win instead of playing not to lose." For some reason, I immediately had the thought of Sam's history on grass. This quote stuck in my head all day long because I feel that it is true about Sam's approach to some of her matches. I mean, we've all seen Sam play 3-setters that should have been over in 2, wondering why she digs deep and finds her A-game at the most critical moments, only to lose the 2 or 3 subsequent points. I don't know, but I think there's a lot of relevance to Sam in Martina's quote.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:34 PM   #14
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

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Yes, Bertrand's cryptic message and sudden disappearance has made the situation even more mysterious. I think he's probably going to try and extort money out of us for his intel in a few days time
Sorry, what's this again? I completely missed it and for some reason, can't actually find B's first post.
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Old Jun 7th, 2013, 12:38 PM   #15
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Re: Road to Wimbledon - is the grass greener in 2013?

It was over on the claycourt thread. I agree with Sinclair, Bertrand will reveal more if and when he's sure it won't be detrimental to Sam.

His integrity is above reproach, despite him being a notorious stalker
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