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Larson:

Los Angeles: Hold Your Horses

Think the WTA is enthusiastic about the possibility of Maria Sharapova becoming #1? They have it plastered all over their web site, even going so far as to do the ranking calculation in advance (something they never do). Going to be rather embarrassing if it doesn't happen.

Of course, it will happen, unless Lindsay Davenport gets a Canadian Open wildcard. But it can't happen until Friday at the earliest, and meanwhile, there were a few dozen other players in action. Starting with another pretty Russian, Alina Jidkova. Pretty, but hardly able to whack the ball like Sharapova. Samantha Stosur snapped a five match losing streak (going back to Birmingham) by beating her 6-3 6-2.

#11 seed Shinobu Asagoe had seemed to be channelling Stosur: She came in with a four match losing streak going back to Birmingham. But she'll need at least one more event to break her streak. Zheng Jie, one of the amazingly strong Chinese contingent in this event, beat her 6-7 6-3 6-0. There is a faint chance that might cost Asagoe her Top 30 ranking this week, and seems almost certain to cost her at the U. S. Open.


Fabiola Zuluaga doesn't have such a long losing streak, but she hasn't been winning much, either; her last quarterfinal was at Bogota, and she's gone 5-7 since. Now 5-8. #14 Gisela Dulko beat her 6-3 6-3.

The early going, in fact, was very good for seeds: #13 Francesca Schiavone beat Dally Randriantefy 7-5 6-3, while #15 Klara Koukalova handed Maja Matevzic yet another loss, 7-6 6-1. Matevzic really needs to think about playing some Challengers so she can get some matches in; she's now 1-5 in 2005, with a five match losing streak. #17 Marion Bartoli eliminated slumping Maria Elena Camerin 6-1 6-4. And #16 Anna Chakvetadze proved that it is possible to beat a Chinese player, at least if it's Li Na who hasn't played a WTA match since Rabat; the Russian beat Li 7-5 6-4, giving her the inside track on a Top 30 ranking (as of right now, she's #28). The one seeded exception, other than Asagoe, was #10 Flavia Pennetta, who lost to Aiko Nakamura 6-3 6-4.

Jelena Jankovic isn't here, so Amy Frazier finally got to show what she can do on California hardcourts against other opponents. She beat Abigail Spears 7-6 6-0.

All the withdrawals left us with two lucky losers facing each other in the first round. Varvara Lepchenko proved luckier, beating Galina Voskoboeva 6-1 7-6.


Antonella Serra Zanetti seems to be turning back into, well, a Serra Zanetti. Since reaching the Wimbledon third round, she had lost four straight matches, on two different surfaces. She's now made it five straight matches on three different surfaces: Qualifier Rika Fujiwara beat her 6-0 6-2.

There are about seven players here trying for spots in the Top 50. For the moment, Maria Kirilenko looks to be in a good position, though she really needs to play better; she edged wildcard Marissa Irvin 4-6 7-5 6-2.

It's a bit surprising that Angela Haynes didn't get a wildcard here, given that they're even putting her in TV commercials these days. But she still took advantage of playing close to home, qualifying and then beating Marta Domachowska 6-4 7-5 in the first round. Domachowska had big points from Sopot; this will drop her from #47 to around #60.

The evening matches were routine: #12 seed Dinara Safina took out Kristina Brandi 7-6 6-3, while Lisa Raymond trounced Lilia Osterloh, who is clearly slumping again, 6-0 6-2.

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IMHO the WTAs handling of the Sharapova hype the past year and half is the most disgusting thing in sports this side of the baseball steroid scandal...Its very ugly to say the least...Its obviously image motivated in whats supposed to be a competative sport....They can't wait to have a tall skinny blonde as the sports top ranked player....Sad thing is few tennis fans seem to be bothered by the WTAs overzealous promotion of Sharapova....

If you think her Wimbledon draw was a joke, just wait to you see what they lay out for her in New York!!! Its gonna be hilarious!!! In the long run this crap is going to really hurt Maria...It will simply motivate all the top players to beat her down at every turn...Sad thing is, Maria didn't ask for it...She is fighting and competing like everyone else...But the WTA and the tennis media are so eager to bow down to a tall skinny blonde of vastly overstated beauty...Its an absolute disgrace...BTW the junior MIss America pageant was on last night...I'll bet WTA execs were all glued to their monitors

Okay, Amon. Enough, enough, enough. When did we become so in agreement. I guess if we take A-Rod off the table, we see many things the same way.

Lightning.

Amonra:"IMHO the WTAs handling of the Sharapova hype the past year and half is the most disgusting thing in sports this side of the baseball steroid scandal...Its very ugly to say the least...Its obviously image motivated in whats supposed to be a competative sport....They can't wait to have a tall skinny blonde as the sports top ranked player....Sad thing is few tennis fans seem to be bothered by the WTAs overzealous promotion of Sharapova....

If you think her Wimbledon draw was a joke, just wait to you see what they lay out for her in New York!!! Its gonna be hilarious!!! In the long run this crap is going to really hurt Maria...It will simply motivate all the top players to beat her down at every turn...Sad thing is, Maria didn't ask for it...She is fighting and competing like everyone else...But the WTA and the tennis media are so eager to bow down to a tall skinny blonde of vastly overstated beauty...Its an absolute disgrace...BTW the junior MIss America pageant was on last night...I'll bet WTA execs were all glued to their monitors

Re: Los Angeles: Hold Your Horses"

Ditto!



IMHO the WTAs handling of the Sharapova hype the past year and half is the most disgusting thing in sports this side of the baseball steroid scandal...Its very ugly to say the least...Its obviously image motivated in whats supposed to be a competative sport....They can't wait to have a tall skinny blonde as the sports top ranked player....Sad thing is few tennis fans seem to be bothered by the WTAs overzealous promotion of Sharapova....<br><br>If you think her Wimbledon draw was a joke, just wait to you see what they lay out for her in New York!!! Its gonna be hilarious!!! In the long run this crap is going to really hurt Maria...It will simply motivate all the top players to beat her down at every turn...Sad thing is, Maria didn't ask for it...She is fighting and competing like everyone else...But the WTA and the tennis media are so eager to bow down to a tall skinny blonde of vastly overstated beauty...Its an absolute disgrace...BTW the junior MIss America pageant was on last night...I'll bet WTA execs were all glued to their monitors

Sad thing is few tennis fans seem to be bothered by the WTAs overzealous promotion of Sharapova....


You bet!! Us tennis fans were not "bothered"!!!


IMHO the WTAs handling of the Sharapova hype the past year and half is the most disgusting thing in sports this side of the baseball steroid scandal...Its very ugly to say the least...Its obviously image motivated in whats supposed to be a competative sport....They can't wait to have a tall skinny blonde as the sports top ranked player....Sad thing is few tennis fans seem to be bothered by the WTAs overzealous promotion of Sharapova....<br><br>If you think her Wimbledon draw was a joke, just wait to you see what they lay out for her in New York!!! Its gonna be hilarious!!! In the long run this crap is going to really hurt Maria...It will simply motivate all the top players to beat her down at every turn...Sad thing is, Maria didn't ask for it...She is fighting and competing like everyone else...But the WTA and the tennis media are so eager to bow down to a tall skinny blonde of vastly overstated beauty...Its an absolute disgrace...BTW the junior MIss America pageant was on last night...I'll bet WTA execs were all glued to their monitors

Yeah, I was bothered by it at first until the '05 AO, the '05 FO, the '05 WB, and the in between slam thrashings that the 'Pova has received at the hands of the WTA's veterans.

If the WTA doesn't mind ending up with cold, slimy, raw eggs all over its collective face on a pretty consistent basis, I don't mind seeing it on its face either

Presently, the 'Pova is 0-3 at slams, and by year's end, she'll be 0-5 at Majors(including the YEC). Who's to worry ? Certainly not WS' fans or Lindsay's fans


Yeah, I was bothered by it at first until the '05 AO, the '05 FO, the '05 WB, and the in between slam thrashings that the 'Pova has received at the hands of the WTA's veterans.<br><br>If the WTA doesn't mind ending up with cold, slimy, raw eggs all over its collective face on a pretty consistent basis, I don't mind seeing it on its face either <img border="0" src="/images/emoticons/happy.gif" alt=""><br><br>Presently, the 'Pova is 0-3 at slams, and by year's end, she'll be 0-5 at Majors(including the YEC). Who's to worry ? Certainly not WS' fans or Lindsay's fans <img border="0" src="/images/emoticons/happy.gif" alt=""><br><br>joy<br><br><br><br>


Joy you are way off target...You are wise enough to know they will promptly redefine success as not winning but doing well in slams...The same people that castigated Venus for reaching 5 slam finals in a row and losing to Serena will hail Masha for running thru cupcake draws while absorbing quarter and semi losses....They will boast about her consistency and tell you she is better than the players that beat her...Remember the Chuckie Hingis spin until they gave up on her rivaling the Williams...Once they accepted she wasn't as good as Venus and Serena they ripped a new arse and promptly hopped the Crapiati bandwagon....


Joy you are way off target...You are wise enough to know they will promptly redefine success as not winning but doing well in slams...The same people that castigated Venus for reaching 5 slam finals in a row and losing to Serena will hail Masha for running thru cupcake draws while absorbing quarter and semi losses....They will boast about her consistency and tell you she is better than the players that beat her...Remember the Chuckie Hingis spin until they gave up on her rivaling the Williams...Once they accepted she wasn't as good as Venus and Serena they ripped a new arse and promptly hopped the Crapiati bandwagon....

Be that as it may, AmonRa, the WTA ladies and the true fans of tennis KNOW the real deal...to mention nothing of what the annals of professional women's tennis of the present era will record...

Take a look:

Tournaments can cheer the bold bunch from Eastern Europe all they want, but the reality is that most of them haven't yet shown they have real staying power among the sport's elite.

"It's already a big achievement to have a Grand Slam title under your belt," said Petrova, who has never won a WTA singles crown. "If you can do it year after year, you are a goddess."

No one in this group has shown herself to be an on-court deity, although the wildly popular Sharapova has reached ethereal status in earnings off the court...

She also has had a decent year on court, winning three titles and reaching the second week of every Grand Slam. But at the majors, she has shown vulnerability -- losing a chance at a berth in the final to eventual winner Serena in Australia, being schooled by eventual champ Justine Henin-Hardenne in the French quarterfinals and, last month, she couldn't find a way to punch through Venus' steely defense in the Wimbledon semis.

(continued)




"I told myself not to look back," Sharapova told ESPN.com . "Of course I wanted to do everything possible to win Wimbledon because it's my favorite tournament, but [Venus] played amazing.

... She has won only one Tier II title on outdoor cement in her career, and Mary Pierce relentlessly pounded shots at her while Sharapova stared into space at last year's Open.

Her results against the top players on U.S. hard courts have not been spectacular, either. She was shut out against Davenport back in March in the Indian Wells semis, then was outrun by Kim Clijsters in the Miami final.

Sharapova admitted that the deluge of attention she received after winning last year's Wimbledon title overwhelmed her.

(continued)




...Even if Sharapova finds her stamina, Kuznetsova finds her drive, Dementieva finds her serve, Petrova finds her nerve and Myskina rediscovers her love of the game, it may not matter in New York.

Four of the game's most celebrated players -- the Williams sisters, Henin-Hardenne and Clijsters -- were either hurt, sick or in a slump last year. The door was left wide open. Now, the Russians are going to have to jar it open once again.

"This year, there are other players coming back & ," Petrova said. "It's not that wide open for us anymore, but it's still going well.

"We're not going away."

http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/columns/story?id=2129528

LOL !
The naysayers could hardly stand it when WS' fans called their favs "QUEENS," but note that the contemporaries of the Sisters regard them as "GODDESSES" on account of their ability to consistently capture the Slam titles. Indeed they are tennis' truest deities of the present era.

AmonRa, the 'Pova herself concurs with you that she has only been hurt by the all-out effort on the part of the WTA and the media to make much more of her than what she is really worth.

(continued)



Even as we commune on this FABULOUS ESPN TENNIS MESSAGE BOARD, the proper assessment is being made vis-a-vis the phenomenal run that the 'povas enjoyed in the year '04, in the absence of the WTA's truly elite players. And, I don't believe Mr. Cronin is a WS' fan

In short, subjective reality can be manipulated, but ONLY objective reality can and will withstand scrutiny over time.
 

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While I agree the WTA seems to be promoting one player over all others, what does the fact that she is a "tall skinny bonde" have to do with it? If similiar references had been made about the hair coloring and look of the Williams sisters, it would be immediatley labled as racist.

The world of motor racing has heavily promoted short, dark haired Danica Stewart.
 

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Are you trying to create Sharapova fans? Because that's what you're doing. By making Sharapova detractors look like a bunch of obsessed idiots. She doesn't hold a GS title, and she won't be favored to get one until a) she actually wins another one, or b) she plays Wimbledon when Venus and Serena aren't healthy. Let that be enough.

Unless, as I said, you're actually trying to create Sharapova fans.
 
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TonyP said:
While I agree the WTA seems to be promoting one player over all others, what does the fact that she is a "tall skinny blonde" have to do with it?
Everything. Except a more accurate reference would have been 'tall, skinny, WHITE, blonde they think is pretty'.

Marketing is what it is. A tall, skinny, WHITE, blonde you think is pretty sells more tickets in the United States, Europe and South America than almost any other ethnic type. Is this to say fans won't embrace other ethnicities? Of course not. But there are white fans who actively avoid the WTA because it's perceived dominant players are black. Giving them a white face they think is pretty to cheer for might sell another ticket. If Elena Demntieva had won the US Open last year, and then had a few wins this year, they'd be marketing her instead.

One other point, the WTA doesn't have that many marketable commodities. They NEED to create more. Sharapova is the most develop-able property they have. It would be better if she was holding a slam title right now, but you take what you can get.
TonyP said:
If similiar references had been made about the hair coloring and look of the Williams sisters, it would be immediatley labled as racist.
If it's true, it doesn't matter what people choose to label it.

There comes a point when you have to differentiate between white supremacy, and the recognition of the presence and effect of racial attitudes. The WTA isn't a white supremacist organization. But the United States is still a country where affinities are, in large part, driven by race. You can lose a LOT of money by failing to recognize that. When it comes to attracting fans, Race. Does. Matter. It doesn't Rule, but it matters.

There was never any question that Black sports fans would embrace white athletes. a) there are ten times as many whites in the USA. b) Blacks were banned from a lot of sports, so Black sports fans only had whites to cheer for. There was a LOT of question as to whether white sports fans would embrace Blacks. There were riots when Jack Johnson became heavyweight champ. Even now, it's an uneven relationship. Golf loves Tiger Woods. The NBA is bleeding. Tennis can't quite get a handle and how best to make it's relationship with the Williams sisters work for everybody.
TonyP said:
The world of motor racing has heavily promoted short, dark haired Danica Stewart.
Of course they do. She's the perfect fantasy of a male race car fan. She looks hot in a bikini leaning over a race car, AND she knows how to drive one. They'll worry about her being blonde when they have TEN women who looks hot in bikinis who know how to drive a race car.
 
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Volcana said:
Everything. Except a more accurate reference would have been 'tall, skinny, WHITE, blonde they think is pretty'.

Marketing is what it is. A tall, skinny, WHITE, blonde you think is pretty sells more tickets in the United States, Europe and South America than almost any other ethnic type. Is this to say fans won't embrace other ethnicities? Of course not. But there are white fans who actively avoid the WTA because it's perceived dominant players are black. Giving them a white face they think is pretty to cheer for might sell another ticket. If Elena Demntieva had won the US Open last year, and then had a few wins this year, they'd be marketing her instead.

One other point, the WTA doesn't have that many marketable commodities. They NEED to create more. Sharapova is the most develop-able property they have. It would be better if she was holding a slam title right now, but you take what you can get.
If it's true, it doesn't matter what people choose to label it.

There comes a point when you have to differentiate between white supremacy, and the recognition of the presence and effect of racial attitudes. The WTA isn't a white supremacist organization. But the United States is still a country where affinities are, in large part, driven by race. You can lose a LOT of money by failing to recognize that. When it comes to attracting fans, Race. Does. Matter. It doesn't Rule, but it matters.

There was never any question that Black sports fans would embrace white athletes. a) there are ten times as many whites in the USA. b) Blacks were banned from a lot of sports, so Black sports fans only had whites to cheer for. There was a LOT of question as to whether white sports fans would embrace Blacks. There were riots when Jack Johnson became heavyweight champ. Even now, it's an uneven relationship. Golf loves Tiger Woods. The NBA is bleeding. Tennis can't quite get a handle and how best to make it's relationship with the Williams sisters work for everybody.
Of course they do. She's the perfect fantasy of a male race car fan. She looks hot in a bikini leaning over a race car, AND she knows how to drive one. They'll worry about her being blonde when they have TEN women who looks hot in bikinis who know how to drive a race car.
:worship: :worship: :worship:


couldn't help but laugh at this quote "... She has won only one Tier II title on outdoor cement in her career, and Mary Pierce relentlessly pounded shots at her while Sharapova stared into space at last year's Open. " :lol:
 

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I remember a time when Venus and Serena were heavily promoted by the WTA. So heavily promoted, in fact, that they got special treatment after being out injured.

I remember posters that were stories high in New York -- courtesy of the WTA -- and many many other promotions for both Venus and Serena.

This is just a case of the new kid on the block. Venus and Serena fans aren't used to their girls having to take a back seat to the new hot thing. I've had many tennis favorites who have been cast into the shade by the new young thing. Maria will be old news too in five years. There will be some other "product" out there to promote for people who are looking to make money.

Venus and Serena made buckets of money from the same machinery that now promotes Maria. Maria is making buckets of money too.

I hope all these girls remember to put something back into the game when their heyday is over.
 

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Think the WTA is enthusiastic about the possibility of Maria Sharapova becoming #1? They have it plastered all over their web site, even going so far as to do the ranking calculation in advance (something they never do). Going to be rather embarrassing if it doesn't happen.
You don't say--- they are practically wetting themselves at the thought :eek: Maria had better win the US Open, or she's going to be a laughing stock :tape: Actually, what the WTA is doing is helping to further destroy and marginalize the sport-- meanwhile they wonder why Americans are not interested in tennis like the rest of the world :rolleyes:
 

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but venus and serena backed up the hype by winning the majors..... yes maria won wimby...last year....but ths year hasnt really done anything that warrents all the media attention...when she wins a match its everywhere, when she loses its a throwaway sentance.
 

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starr said:
I remember a time when Venus and Serena were heavily promoted by the WTA. So heavily promoted, in fact, that they got special treatment after being out injured.
If you're referring to the Special Seedings and Special Rankings they received last year, those rules were put in place by the WTA as a direct result of the Monica Seles stabbing. Steffi Graf and Lindsay Davenport received the same "special treatment" when they missed significant time due to injury. The WTA abolished the Special Seeding rule this year.
 

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Kelly said:
but venus and serena backed up the hype by winning the majors..... yes maria won wimby...last year....but ths year hasnt really done anything that warrents all the media attention...when she wins a match its everywhere, when she loses its a throwaway sentance.
Both Venus and Serena got TONS of hype before they won a single tournament let alone a major.
 

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starr said:
I remember a time when Venus and Serena were heavily promoted by the WTA. So heavily promoted, in fact, that they got special treatment after being out injured.
What special treatment did they get that no one else got??

I remember posters that were stories high in New York -- courtesy of the WTA -- and many many other promotions for both Venus and Serena.

This is just a case of the new kid on the block. Venus and Serena fans aren't used to their girls having to take a back seat to the new hot thing. I've had many tennis favorites who have been cast into the shade by the new young thing. Maria will be old news too in five years. There will be some other "product" out there to promote for people who are looking to make oney.
Oh please. Serena and Venus were two black tennis playing sisters from Compton who grunted, that's why they got any attention they did. They got just as much NEGATIVE press as they got positive.

Venus and Serena made buckets of money from the same machinery that now promotes Maria. Maria is making buckets of money too.

I hope all these girls remember to put something back into the game when their heyday is over.
Venus and Serena aren't tall caucasian and blonde so they definitely weren't marketed the same way as Sharapova. Maria's getting the Kournikova treatment x2 since she has actually won a title including a GS.
 

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Knizzle said:
What special treatment did they get that no one else got??



Oh please. Serena and Venus were two black tennis playing sisters from Compton who grunted, that's why they got any attention they did. They got just as much NEGATIVE press as they got positive.



Venus and Serena aren't tall caucasian and blonde so they definitely weren't marketed the same way as Sharapova. Maria's getting the Kournikova treatment x2 since she has actually won a title including a GS.
Mind you the WTA did not promote the sisters--Richard was on his one-man crusade trying to find anyone who would listen :lol: and although the media paid some attention they also thought he was coo-coo . As far as Serena getting attention, it was only after she played a few matches and beat top players . This attention was/is well warranted if you asked me --check her record.
 

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Well, I agree and disagree with some of the sentiments in this thread. First, the WTA's obsession with Sharapova getting the number one ranking is pretty disgusting, and yes most of the extra attention has to do with the fact that she's attractive. However, I have to agree with some of the posters that Venus and Serena have not necessarily been treated poorly by the USTA and the WTA Tour. If you go to NYC, there are posters plastered of Venus and Serena promoting the US Open, courtesy of the USTA, and the sisters were both given a lot of hype when they first came on to the tour. When Venus first ascended to number one it was big news, albeit her achievement wasn't getting the hype that Sharapova is getting now.
 

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TonyP said:
While I agree the WTA seems to be promoting one player over all others, what does the fact that she is a "tall skinny bonde" have to do with it?
All most everything. More focus and emphasis is place on that more than tennis. If there is no truth to this, explain why the ferver for this #1 as against when Lindsay and others captured the #1 position by producing better tennis results.

Race is always a part of everything in America. There are people alive who still support and practice racism today. Your constant denial doesn't change those facts.

I don't know who you are trying to convince with your lame arguments but remember that there are many reasonable, rational thinkers around that can refute your biased arguments in a second.

In any case, I'm willing to sit back and watch what the WTA's premier player will win for the year. If the wins don't materialize as expected, I would like you to explain to me why all this hype is merited over others with better tennis results.
 

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:topic:

The early going, in fact, was very good for seeds: #13 Francesca Schiavone beat Dally Randriantefy 7-5 6-3, while #15 Klara Koukalova handed Maja Matevzic yet another loss, 7-6 6-1. Matevzic really needs to think about playing some Challengers so she can get some matches in; she's now 1-5 in 2005, with a five match losing streak
This guy doesn't know much about tennis, does he?
 

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ptkten said:
Well, I agree and disagree with some of the sentiments in this thread. First, the WTA's obsession with Sharapova getting the number one ranking is pretty disgusting, and yes most of the extra attention has to do with the fact that she's attractive. However, I have to agree with some of the posters that Venus and Serena have not necessarily been treated poorly by the USTA and the WTA Tour. If you go to NYC, there are posters plastered of Venus and Serena promoting the US Open, courtesy of the USTA, and the sisters were both given a lot of hype when they first came on to the tour. When Venus first ascended to number one it was big news, albeit her achievement wasn't getting the hype that Sharapova is getting now.
Who are you to say that most of the attention she gets is just from her looks? Goodnes, she's good enough at tennis to be knocking on the door of the number 1 ranking at the age of 18...... that would get ANYBODY in any sport a lot of attention............. What is disgusting about the attention she gets? It's no more attention than the Williams sisters got and they got alot of attention and still do because of THEIR LOOKS, it's no more attention than Rafael Nadal gets right now, look at the attention Andy Murray got and he hasn't won anything big............... People need to get over their jealous of Maria's looks and game, and get over their jealousy toward any good looking white player.....
 

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The idea that Maria is being promoted because she is attractive is obviously true. The idea that she is being promoted because she is tall and blonde and attractive is less true. The idea that she is being promoted because she is white is utter rubbish.

Probably no two people in tennis history have been promoted more by race than the Williams sisters. Every story in the early days talked about their ghetto roots, their growing up in Compton, their being black girls in a "white sport."

Depsite the fact that they were not the first black girls in tennis --were not the only black girls in tennis --their race was a major factor in the WTA's game plan. For my money, it was all calculated to attract black TV viewers, who were probably not all that much into tennis, before the sisters came along. So, if a fair number of black viewers tuned in, they could significantly boost TV ratings and with 30 million blacks in the US, that was entirely possible.

But Venus and Serena are not currently at the top of the heap. There have been about five number ones since they were there, Justine, Kim, Mauresmo, Davenport and shortly, Maria. So, the idea that Maria is the great white hope is nonsense.

Yes, the WTA likes her because she is tall, blonde and attractive, but they would like her just as much if she were short and brunette and attractive. The part that matters is attractive. Not her hair color, nor her race.

The other part they like is that she is something the Williams sisters never were --dedicated to tennis.

Sure, she does commercials and the occasional TV appearance. But for the most part she is all tennis. She is not "going to school." She is not a fashion designer, nor a budding actress. In fact, it appears she has turned down pumb acting opportunities, including one on "Desperate Housewives." (Eat your heart out, Serena.)

She is very interested in being number one, and my suspicion is that she will fight hard to hold the title as long as she can.

The last reason they are promoting her so hard is that right now, the superstars of tennis are across the aisle, in the men's game. The two brightest stars in the game are Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Federer may not be anybody's matinee idol in terms of looks, but he is beautiful to watch on a tennis court. His accomplishments have already elevated him to superstar status.

Nadal is brand new, fresh as a daisy in media parlance, and a proven winner. I suspect a lot of the girls also find him very cute.

These days, Maria is the only woman generating that kind of interest in the WTA. Venus and Serena seem a little like old news these days. Both have a slam this year, but other than that have had very forgettable seasons. They simply do not attract the notice Sharapova does these days.

So, she is like it or not, the flavor of the month for now, and her detractors will have to learn to live with her.
 

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Well another article I didn't read because I saw IceQueen as the thread starter...
 

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Volcana said:
Are you trying to create Sharapova fans? Because that's what you're doing. By making Sharapova detractors look like a bunch of obsessed idiots. She doesn't hold a GS title, and she won't be favored to get one until a) she actually wins another one, or b) she plays Wimbledon when Venus and Serena aren't healthy. Let that be enough.

Unless, as I said, you're actually trying to create Sharapova fans.

:yeah:

Volcana, that's a revelation that some people don't realize. If Venus and/or Serena fans bring up the point as to how a number of non-Williams fans are always centering on the negative about them, always cheering for their opponents, always posting negative articles concerning them, and taking their words out of context,

how does that make us look when a few of us do it other players? Or that when Venus or Serena loses, it was due to some kind of specific condition or problem.

Serena won the 2005 Australian Open and Venus won Wimbledon 2005.

Should anything else matter?

I think Maria deserves to be #1 based on that fact it took the eventual champions to elimnate her from the grand slam tournaments already played this year.

When you diminish the status, the rank, and the ability of your fave or faves' opponents, you are actually diminishing the achievements that your fave or faves have accomplished. Doesn't it actually lift the level of fave's accomplishment when they defeated the only player ( Maria ) to reach two grand slam semi-finals so far this year or the only player ( Lindsay ) to compete it in two grand slam finals so far this year?

I'm a Maria fan because she parallels Serena and Venus in so many ways ( perception, style, determination ).

icequeen, I am not trying to single you out. Yet, aren't you doing the same thing to Maria that Julia1968 and others are doing to Serena and Venus?
 
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