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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone! :)

This Australian Open has been very boring for me as my fave, Jelena didn't make the trip to Australia, what makes it even worse is the fact she would have had a real shot at going far in the tournament.

But, she will return to action next week in Tokyo and what do you guys think are the positives of her missing the Australian Summer?

For me, I think she'll be more prepared next week in Tokyo. She's had extra time to rest and work on her game. No doubt, she would have been working on her serve and other parts of her game that need to be improved.

So, we could say that she'll be a lot more refreshed and her game is probably a lot more improved for the new season.

She's also had her chance to see everyone play, which I'm sure she's bee keeping a close eye on. It wouldn't surprise me if she's been up all night watching the AO, carefully looking at her opponents.

She'll know what to expect from the top 10 once she gets back on tour and that could really help her as they won't know what to expect from her.

She's also managed to skip the dangerous Rebound Ace surface and unlike a lot of the top players, she's not suffering an injury, like Williams x 2, Davenport, Capriati and Clijsters who has to miss 4 weeks!

Sorry for this, just a fan trying to think positive about his fave's absence at the moment.

What do you think have been the positives of Jelena's decision to skip the AO?
 

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I think if Jelena went back after last year and really work on her serve, then I think she will do herself nothing wrong in skipping this period. Last year, she had a strings of win over good players and just unlucky to lose to the in-form Lindsay 3 times, I watched their matchup two times last year, and the main problem is that Jelena got her serve broken so easily by Lindsay return. So yeah, I am looking forward to Jelena return next week, it will be great to see her come back, and honestly she had a shot at top 5 this year (although having said that I think the current top 10 is pretty much as tough as you can get, don't you think)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Certainly wong.

You are right. The only thing that separated Jelena from Lindsay was the serve, off the ground they were pretty much the same player.

If Jelena has improved her serve then the top 5 beckons and that's her aim for the 2002 season.

The one thing that is good is that when in Saddlebrook, Jelena uses the Saddlebrook coaches that are available. So she is getting expert training during the off season.

I also expect a fitter, faster and stronger Jelena as she has been working very intensely with Mike Nishihara, her trainer who travels with her.

She also said in a recent interview that she's been making new tactics to win and to try and become smarter than her opponents.
 

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Yeah, I really think that her dropshot is getting a bit too predictable and some new tactics off her bag will be great (having said that I love the face on their opponent when Jelena throws in one of her speciality drop shot)
 

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Definitely not....

Hey Rosh..

IMO I think Jelena really shouldn't have skipped the Aussie Open. Even though she would have to face a very hostile crowd, her chances at this tournament would be very good. She isn't a very injury prone player, and she isn't injured at the moment so she could play her best and maybe scare some girls - Venus, for example - and reach semis, or even the final (pretty hard, I guess)

But, for those who are saying Jelena has been working very hard on her serve and will certainly come out with a big weapon, I only believe it if I see ;)

I wonder if this long break will be really worthwhile for her... :angel:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah.

I also think she needs to play the dropshot less, but all in all, it is a good drop shot.

She can certainly surprise with it but I'd like to see her use it less often, making it a little more surprising when she does use it.
 

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I think she overhits the dropshot too and it's very predictable... when I watched the final in Bahia, Jelena hit like 5 dropshots on crucial moments of the match and Monica answered them with 5 winners, reaching the ball very easily... :cool:
 

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I think that skipping a Grand Slam is a very bad decision.

She is limiting herself a lot with this, if she decides to play next year, the crowd can be more hostile to her, and every time she misses it, it will be worse.

If she really wants to be a top player in the top 5 she needs to play the GS, she can't afford missing the Australian Open.
 

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I strongly disagree Fingon.

I think if her mind was not ready to perform at OZ then it was a great choice for her to stay home. Also Jelena's rank is not gonna be hurt by her not playing at OZ. Also I think Jelena is preparing herself to really blossom in 2003. Sometimes you have less pressure when you have no points to defend at a Slam. She will imho only gain. Plus I really think she has the game to win some Huge Tourneys. I am curious to see how Jelena comes out in Tokyo
:)

This girl will only rise in rank:) She has a huge asset already and that is her mental toughness during match play.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks Fingon and Dawn for your comments.

Here is a recent quote:

'I didn't expect 2001 to be as good as it was but I feel that 2002 will be my year. I've been preparing for this year and I fell it will be my breakthrough year'

Sounds promising.
 

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If she is indeed training at Saddlebrook, it could work out all right. So far she has dropped two ranking spots from her high of #7 just before the AO , but I guess that's not too bad.

But my real concern all along has been that Jelena said she was spending the offseason in Belgrade! :eek: If that is indeed the case, that is bad; what kind of tennis town is that in winter??? Do you know where she has actually been? :confused:
 

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Jelena is the toughest kid in town. Right? She could have handled the pressure in Australia. All she had to do was say thanks to Australia for helping her and her family out. And they would have let her live her life. She knows how to handle herself. The Oz draw is surely wide open. If Kim Clijsters wins the 2002 Australian Open, Jelena will regret not going. Because this is a slam she could have contended for, and even won.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
janie: Jelena had originally intended to stay in Belgrade but the facilities there weren't up the standard she needed.

She's been in Belgrade twice for 2 very short stays to accept awards etc but for pretty much the whole season, she's been back in Florida.

She actually trained with Monica Seles over the offseason.

the cat: No doubt she can handle bad crowds, she did great against Davenport and handled Dementieva in Moscow with a hostile crowd against her. She has said she will play the AO in 2003 so hopefully she will do well!
 

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I think that this talk of hostility from the Australian crowd is overrated.

I mean even last year, after they both settled down and played a good match, the crowd started to be fair. I mean we're not like the Roland Garros crowd. Please.

If Martina Hingis can survive there, I'm sure Jelena can cope just fine here.

Plus a lot of you forget there's still a huge fan base for Jelena still in Australia. There are many who will still support her regardless of what flag she's under.

Anyway good to know she's playing here in 2003, skipping GS will damage her career if she doesn't.
 

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I wouldn't say she made the 'right' decision, but I certainly don't think it was the wrong one - she's not lost anything by not being in Melbourne.

She played a hell of lot back-end of last year, and while you can bet her intensity to play and to win will not have dropped in the time she's had off, mentally and physically she needed that break.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Youre right Sam!

Last year, after the initial shock she did get quite a lot of support in her doubles and she did receive a standing ovation as she left the court after pushing Davenport to 3 sets.

On the news, you could hear people saying 'We love you Jelena!'

Jelena said in her last interview on the 2nd of Jan that the crowd is not the reason she didn't go to Australia. She said she felt that she really needed the break, she said she wanted to run from the media and just work really hard on her game and have some fun.

She said she believed that it'll be the best for her in the long run and she has no further plans to skip the AO.
 

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well, i dont know what'll happen if
she face the crowd maybe it's not
that bad
imo, to skip the slam isn't the good
deciscion anyway
 

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Look I agree players should not skip the Grand Slams, but I really respect Jelena's decision to take the break, for whatever reason.

I mean the woman was a machine last year. How many weeks did she compete from the French Open until the Chase?

I say the extra time off will be good for her and she will comeback fresh and a force to be reckoned with.
 

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I hope for her own sake that it was a right decision. She had a great opportunity to improve her ranking. Well, good luck for the rest of the season!!

Hope your serve has improved :)
 

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Well, while I'm not in favor of a player skipping slams-It may not turn out to be a bad decision.

Positives

1. Jelena's not a ding-dong like Kournikova about taking time off
to improve weaknesses, I suspect she's used her time wisely.

2. She might be mentally fresher coming into the next couple of
months-Jana Novotna made a habit of bypassing the Aussie
and it often worked for her.


Negatives

1. If she makes a HABIT of skipping Oz, it will hurt her image.
2. Declaring that it was Oz was "too far" is a funny joke,
considering she's playing Tokyo. Of course Tokyo has a
fat appearence fee for her to show ;) Also bad for image.

I disagree about the ranking Dawn. True, she loses nothing as she lost early last year, but she missed a golden chance to pick up points, and with the new system slams count more. If she wins an indoor even or two than it will make up for it.

Bottom line-possibly a good move if her results are better this spring.
 
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