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Discussion Starter #1
Anybody give me an unbiased synopsis? I'm gathering Serena didn't move well, and some people think she was injured. I reviewed the first couple posts of a lot of the threads and nobody's talking much about how Azarenka played. Was she relatively clean? Good winner/UE ratio? Was the match as one-sided as the scoreline?

Given that it was probably the highest profile match since OZ, it would be nice if Azarenka was good, rather than the outcome being solely determined by an injury. (Azarenka obviously wasn't bad. just hoping the match wasn't the 2004 RG final bad), Again, I missed the match, I was running an audition.

If there's a thread where they get into the match itself, just post the link. Thanx.
 
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Vika - 10 winners/18 unf. errors

The 1st set was actually close. Vika needed 4 set points to win it.

IMHO Vika played better in her previous rounds, than in this match, especially in the 1st.

she was a bit erratic in the beginning.
 

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Yes, Serena didn't move well and had major taping on her left thigh. The match was not horrible but it was not the cleanest of matches. Serena had trouble moving up to balls and so she made a ton of errors into the upper 1/3 of the net.

Azarenka played as well as she needed to, basically. She has played much better in other matches, for instance she was playing worse here than she was in the first set of their AO encounter. She had the most trouble on serve where she had a bunch of double faults and gave Serena looks at some weak second serves, where Serena was able to hit several clean return winners. Once they got into an actual rally, Azarenka had the major advantage and generally would move the ball from side to side until Serena couldn't get there. So, there were a lot of positives for Azarenka in that she was an effective frontrunner and didn't crumble under the pressure (even though she did DF on MP). She played some very nice points, and contrary to what has been posted around here, I don't think Serena would have run away with the match had she been 100%. I think it would have been very close and competitive if that had been the case.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hmmmmm ... not the ideal case, but not a 'disaster' either. If Azarenka never wins anothe tournament, this becomes a fluke. If she wins a couple slams, Serena's injury becomes a footnote. I can live that. Injuries happen in every sport.

When's the last time anybody mentioned 'Serena couldn't serve' in the 2004 YEC final. Both players have moved on to a couple more slam wins. It's a footnote.

And, selfishly, I'm glad I didn't miss a match of all-time great quality.

Congrats Azarenka. Tough luck Serena. On to the clay.
 

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Serena could have won the match. The first set was tense, often well-played from the ground, and closely contested. Serena hit some critically-timed aces and some winners that would have intimidated a player with less character than Azarenka. In the 2nd set Serena sort of let it go until applying some pressure in the last game. If Azarenka had choked in that long service game at 5-1, anything could still have happened.
 

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Yes, Serena didn't move well and had major taping on her left thigh. The match was not horrible but it was not the cleanest of matches. Serena had trouble moving up to balls and so she made a ton of errors into the upper 1/3 of the net.

Azarenka played as well as she needed to, basically. She has played much better in other matches, for instance she was playing worse here than she was in the first set of their AO encounter. She had the most trouble on serve where she had a bunch of double faults and gave Serena looks at some weak second serves, where Serena was able to hit several clean return winners. Once they got into an actual rally, Azarenka had the major advantage and generally would move the ball from side to side until Serena couldn't get there. So, there were a lot of positives for Azarenka in that she was an effective frontrunner and didn't crumble under the pressure (even though she did DF on MP). She played some very nice points, and contrary to what has been posted around here, I don't think Serena would have run away with the match had she been 100%. I think it would have been very close and competitive if that had been the case.
yes it wasn't because it was even worse, really :eek:
 

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Azarenka played good (except the very last game) + Serena was injured = Azarenka won 63 61
 

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Serena had her left thigh heavily taped. If you saw her match vs. Venus, you know it was troubling her movement. She couldn't set up her two handed backhands (she uses open stance, ouch!) so she played 'push ball' style to Azarenka. Azarenka came out on fire, she had a plan to go up the middle a lot, hoping Serena would make the errors. It could have been worse, if she realized Serena couldn't move well and strung her sie to side. But Azarenka also showed some nerves and her serve wasn't all that great. If Serena could have relied on her left leg not hurting and could tee off on her serve and have her reliable backhand, it would have been much more interesting. I'd like to see them both play each other uninjured.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'd like to see them both play each other uninjured.
I have a feeling that sometime before September, you'll get your wish.
 

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Good thread Volcana. :)
Enjoyed reading your analysis alwaysHingis and vogus. Very interesting...

Azarenka had the major advantage and generally would move the ball from side to side until Serena couldn't get there
So in other words Azarenka played sensible tennis. I was hoping that the finals would be high-quality, but seems to me as if Azarenka had the most consistent tournament and played good tennis in most of her matches. Also nice to see a player not choking.

Doesn't seem like this was a great match, and I'd like to see what would happen if they both met when healthy and on-form.
 

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Victoria had a great gameplan...and exposed Serena's biggest weakness since the knee-surgery: She has trouble moving to her backhand corner. And Azarenka kept pounding that backhand corner...all Serena could do was slice, slice or she was late and hit the error.

This girl is gonna be a huge match-up problem for Serena now imo. Positives? Serena still has the fear factor, players need much chances to close her out...
 

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So, there were a lot of positives for Azarenka in that she was an effective frontrunner and didn't crumble under the pressure (even though she did DF on MP). She played some very nice points, and contrary to what has been posted around here, I don't think Serena would have run away with the match had she been 100%. I think it would have been very close and competitive if that had been the case.
Agreed, Vika could give Serena a good run for the money even without the sore muscle. She is going to be a major contender from this point forward. Interesting that she didn't call for an on-court coaching session, shows her maturity.
 

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^but she did look to Antonio several times, especially at balls close to the lines.

and somebody mentioned not choking. Had Serena been fitter, I am sure she would have broken Vika when Vika served for the match. Serena hit some UEs she normally doesn't
 

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Serena doesn't lose by that score to an averageova without summat wrong with her. Don't anyone hold their breath waiting for another player worthy of comment to emerge <yawns>
 

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Azarenka played as well as she needed to. Serena's injury made her backhand the major weakness, and it was exposed rather well by Azarenka. Actually impressed that she kept her head on for the most part, only lost concentration a handful of times, notably the final game of the match, but I expected much worse coming from someone so inexperienced at this level and playing someone like Serena. People are saying that Azarenka played 'well enough', which is true, but I honestly believe that had Serena not been injured, Azarenka would have stepped it up aswell. Serena didn't just give the title to her, Azarenka did take it. This match also made me hate Serena less like Serena more, seeing her actually come out and give the fans some sort of entertainment, despite the injury. I was surprised. Also, could tell they have a fair amount of respect for one another and they get on quite well. It wasn't a great match by any means, but Serena was injured. What can you do?
 

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Serena doesn't lose by that score to an averageova without summat wrong with her. Don't anyone hold their breath waiting for another player worthy of comment to emerge <yawns>
It's these sort of arrogant comments that have some wishing you would hold your breath for longer than is good for you!
 
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