Dementieva's 50mph serve... - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 2004, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Dementieva's 50mph serve...

...reminded me of Sabatini. I really miss Gaby at times like these

Best left-right combination by a German (and that includes Max Schmeling): Steffi Graf. All she did in 1987 was knock Navratilova out of #1 and try to knock Evert out of the sport. (Mike Lupica in "The Best and Worst of Tennis in 1987", World Tennis)

"A couple of years ago, we nicknamed Steffi Graf's forehand 'Jaws'. And that music would go perfectly when she starts running in to the net, swarming on that little ball." (JoAnne Russell, during the 1988 Wimbledon final between Graf and Navratilova)
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 2004, 10:42 PM
 
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This match actually reminded me of how much I miss Monica - she would have hammered most of those second serves.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 2004, 10:47 PM
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I was actually saying to my friends who were watching the match with me that if Dementieva had been serving like that against Seles or Graf in their prime both of them would have just stepped up and punished that serve with one stroke unlike the flakier top players of today.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 12:10 AM
 
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So true - all those Demetieva serves to the forehand would have been hit for winners all over the place by Steffi as well .
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 03:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kart
So true - all those Demetieva serves to the forehand would have been hit for winners all over the place by Steffi as well .
I'm not so sure about that! Remember Gaby actually BEAT Steffi with a serve that was,imo,worse than Elena's!!

I think those spin mushroom serves are difficult to return...otherwise more players past and present would take advantage.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 05:54 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seabreeze
I'm not so sure about that! Remember Gaby actually BEAT Steffi with a serve that was,imo,worse than Elena's!!

I think those spin mushroom serves are difficult to return...otherwise more players past and present would take advantage.
I think Sabatini's serve was a lot better than Dementieva's. For one, Gaby was much smarter about placement, and more importantly, she made very good use of spin unlike Dementieva. And don't forget that Sabatini's first serve wasn't too bad; it was her second serve that was a sitting duck. Sabatini did not beat Graf by slicing every serve to Graf's forehand -- that would have been suicidal I think Graf would have murdered Dementieva's slice serves to her forehand. And I don't even want to think about what Seles would have done to them

Best left-right combination by a German (and that includes Max Schmeling): Steffi Graf. All she did in 1987 was knock Navratilova out of #1 and try to knock Evert out of the sport. (Mike Lupica in "The Best and Worst of Tennis in 1987", World Tennis)

"A couple of years ago, we nicknamed Steffi Graf's forehand 'Jaws'. And that music would go perfectly when she starts running in to the net, swarming on that little ball." (JoAnne Russell, during the 1988 Wimbledon final between Graf and Navratilova)

Last edited by samn; Sep 11th, 2004 at 06:07 AM.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 07:44 AM
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Sabatini's serve wasn't that bad early in her career. only at the end it got worse, but those serves that didn't even reach to the net like in that match were not common during her whole career. I remember it happened in the match again Asa Carlson at the us open 96, but that was not the Gaby who was in the top 5 for years including serve!

that said I think those weak serves are a weapon too.

You saw it with Cappy. she wanted to hit winners right away and then misses. also the standing almost at the net while waiting to return didn't work in cappy's advantage, because dementieva is fast and so was always ready to hit the return back again while cappy was still running backward being in the defense most of the time!

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 12:50 PM
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Watching Dementieva's serve, I was thinking about what Steffi, Monica, Mary or Jen would do with it should they ever have to play her! Well, Jen did and I was amazed that she didn't hit one service return winner!! The problem is, the serve is so slow that she can get back in position and be ready for the next shot. It seems to actually be very hard to hit a return winner against her because she recovers from the serve so quickly and has such good speed around the court. Some of the best servers in the world can't be ready in time for their next shot because the ball comes back at them so quickly.


I guess we won't see Steffi or Monica play against that serve, but I'm still hoping to see what Mary might be able to do with it.

One unbelievable statistic is that during the course of the US Open, if you take away the double faults, Dementieva actually wins over 70% of her second serve points! She's also so mentally tough because she knows that she'll be broken pretty often in a match, so doesn't get down on herself or start to panic if she can't hold serve. Did anyone really think Jennifer would be able to serve it out at 6-5 yesterday?!
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 01:53 PM
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Sabatini's serve wasn't big but she was able to move it around and place it so she wasn't at an immediate disavantage in the rally. Slow serves are not a weapon - this is supposed to be professional tennis, not park players who don't know how to hit a spinny ball when they see it so there is no excuse for Dementieva to be getting away with this level of serving. Only Serena, Davenport & Clijsters seem able to dismiss it as it should be. Monica took it apart the only time that she played Dementieva.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
it was her second serve that was a sitting duck.
Speaking of which.During a telecast of one of Gaby's matches,Mary Carillo,said about Gaby's second serve:"its' such a duck that when it hits the court,it qwacks."
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 04:13 PM
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That´s the thing....Jennifer just isn´t an agressive returner, heck she isn´t an agressive player. period. Her sole intention in a match is to make her opponent hit an extra ball till they miss and that was her doom yesterday against Elena.


That´s why I thought Serena had a better chance against Elena, because Serena IS an agressive player..she would have hammered those 50 mph serves like they deserve to be.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 08:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MirjanaLfan
Slow serves are not a weapon - this is supposed to be professional tennis, not park players who don't know how to hit a spinny ball when they see it so there is no excuse for Dementieva to be getting away with this level of serving. Only Serena, Davenport & Clijsters seem able to dismiss it as it should be. Monica took it apart the only time that she played Dementieva.
ITA.

It's the only really exploitable part of Elena's game. It staggers me that the other top players don't step in and have a crack at it.

Mind you I suppose half the problem is that if they step in they'll have to retreat back to the baseline - god forbid any of them (apart from maybe Amelie) actually continue onwards to the net .
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 2004, 09:25 PM
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I'm going out on a limb before the final, but I think Kuznetsova has the game to handle Dementieva's weak serve better than most. Often the best attack on a weak serve is not to go for too much and hammer it for a winner, but to place it well to set up the next ball. I'd love to see Novotna or Tauziat attack her serve. They'd eat up the serve by placing the return well and being ready to volley the next ball away. Unfortunately "volleying the next ball away" isn't in the repertoire of 95% of today's players. Therefore, Dementieva survives. I like Kuznetsova's all-court game and should she not be satisfied with her finals appearance, she could have a win tonight.

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 16th, 2004, 02:19 PM
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Sabatini's serve wasn't that bad early in her career. only at the end it got worse
Thats not how I remember her serve.When she first started on tour she had an ok serve,none of that ridiculous patty cake stuff.It was during the time she hired Kirmyre that her serve got so bad.When Juan Nunez,at the end of her career, took over he seemed to correct some of it,and there was alot less patty cake serving.Which is why it was such a shame when she retired at 26,cuz her serve was looking a lot better!

Yes,at times her serve was worse than ED's...but only on really bad days.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 16th, 2004, 09:20 PM
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I agree with doby, sabatini had a better (first) serve during her slump, 1994 1995
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