I don't think manufactured is the right word. I understand the natural talent vs hardworking, though.
Actually you make an interesting point about Kerber. Kerber for sure does not have natural looking strokes, especially on the forehand side. Her serve has always been a liability, particularly her second serve. However, her leftiness is an advantage, like Nadal she is someone who writes right handed but plays left handed. But in cricket that's quite normal where a player might bowl left handed and bat right handed, or bowl right handed and bat left handed.It seems that Konta's game is not very appreciated in this thread. To me, it is irrelevant whether a shot looks good or not, technically every safe variation of the technique has its advantages and disavantages. (by safe I mean that it is natural to the body and will not lead to injuries).
Take Kerber's abbreviated forehand motion. She is not a natural leftie, but one could argue that this abbreviated forehand is what helped her win Wimbledon and why she is such an effective counterpuncher (who can consistently beat Serena). The reason for this is that it allows her to rebalance herself and get ready for the next rally very quickly, which is important for fast surfaces.
I do not know much about Konta's game, but she is a very talented player and probably the most qualified quarterfinalist to take on Serena :cheer: (too bad this will not happen this tournament). Personally, when her forehand is on, it looks more scary than many other players' serves :haha:
I wish I had more insight, but I am simply not following her matches enough to have a more informed opinion. The point of my post was more to point out that the way strokes look is irrelevant (and this forum tends to obsess on that subjective aspect). Of course sometimes, in desperate situations, a player might resort to a shot that not only looks ugly, but is also ineffectual (this is where I agree with you on the importance of footwork - if the shot is not set up properly, it will look both ugly and be ineffective).Unfortunately for Konta, it is the lack of calm which is really holding her back, I can't decide which comes first. Is it her lack of sound technique which gets exposed when the pressure is on, hence those wild errors in the mid court at important moments in matches over a period of many years? Or is it her lack of clam, she gets flustered and can't think coherently, leading to those wild errors over and over again? Maybe that's why I said it is like watching a computer malfunction. It is just very strange to watch, especially the French Open semifinal. After all, she is an experienced player and she had all the support in the crowd and those wtaching at home, myself included, hopefully that would have been an inspiration as opposed to being a hindrance.
Hmmm... I don't recall using the word ugly myself but perhaps others have, I suppose that's up to them and their opinion.I wish I had more insight, but I am simply not following her matches enough to have a more informed opinion. The point of my post was more to point out that the way strokes look is irrelevant (and this forum tends to obsess on that subjective aspect). Of course sometimes, in desperate situations, a player might resort to a shot that not only looks ugly, but is also ineffectual (this is where I agree with you on the importance of footwork - if the shot is not set up properly, it will look both ugly and be ineffective).
All in all, calling the game of a three-time GS semifinalist ugly seems a bit frivolous to me.
Not doing on court coaching is just his way and he didn't do it with Timea either so it's not some kind of lesson especially for Konta.Dimitri Zavialoff is clearly aware of this problem, which is why he has refused to do on court coaching with her outside of slams.
This is her problem with the press. People talk about the last press conferences. But the press has been so frustrated with her. One british journalist said its like talking to robot giving you pre prepared answers. She never gives you a guman answer and evertything is so calculatedWhen he is talking about 'manufactured', McEnroe is clearly referring not just to Lendl, but to the role of tennis academies that churned out Chris Evert clones with identikit baseline games and two handed backhands in the 1980s, ie the Nick Bolletieri academy. These were tennis factories that produced finished goods.
The thing about Johanna Konta is that it is not just the tennis that is manufactured. It is everything - her accent, her persona, her answers in conferences. She is clearly a good student - she learns what she is taught, revises well and produces what she thinks the examiners expect of her. But she cannot think for herself. She is completely stuck when there is a question that is not on the syllabus. In that sense, her performance in the match and in the press conference were the same - both departed from the prepared syllabus and she could not cope. Dimitri Zavialoff is clearly aware of this problem, which is why he has refused to do on court coaching with her outside of slams. She clearly needs to learn the 'favourite in the quarters or semis against tricky slicer/dropshotter' module, because she failed that paper the last two times. It looks like her weakest subject at the moment. She is nearly 30 so I am not sure she will ever change - she just needs to prepare and learn more and more modules until every aspect is covered. You feel with her that every aspect of her life is probably just as neat and tidy, but there is no originality in any of it.