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I think Maria still has PTSD from that beatdown in the Gold Medal Match from Serena
She's also 80ish ranking spots and 600ish ranking points away from qualifying.

Looking forward to US #14 Jessica Pegula's statement on her Olympic plans. Or UK #14 Eden Silva (???) to say how she plans on spending her Olympics. Or Czech #14 Jesika Maleckova. Or Romanian #14 Gabriela Talaba.
 

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Every year Sharapova found the WADA list. But when she was caught doping, she began to assure that she suddenly could not find him. She holds people for idiots who must believe her lies.
 

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Sharapova took doping, but received a weak punishment. And she continues to advertise goods, including sports. This is wrong, this is an example to others that you will not be strictly punished for doping.
 

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She's fully healed until her next injury anyway.
That's the real T. She's been declared/declared herself fully healthy a couple times since the comeback, but in spite of her ground game no longer being a revelation of power tennis, she's redlining and her body can't take it.

It would be an interesting twist of the physique debate if the power players are no longer the lasting style and the movers turn into the more durable, career-years wise, on the tour.

My instinct is that power gets surpassed more easily than it used to (e.g. Sharapova no longer is a top 10 ball striker off any wing, nor is Venus Williams, and Kvitova is barely) whereas movement-centric players have to add pop to their serve and groundstrokes (compare Halep 2019 to Halep 2014) to stay elite and so become less reliant on movement.
 

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My instinct is that power gets surpassed more easily than it used to (e.g. Sharapova no longer is a top 10 ball striker off any wing, nor is Venus Williams, and Kvitova is barely) whereas movement-centric players have to add pop to their serve and groundstrokes (compare Halep 2019 to Halep 2014) to stay elite and so become less reliant on movement.
If movement-centric players can just add pop to their game then it should have had pop all along.
 

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If movement-centric players can just add pop to their game then it should have had pop all along.
What? Players don't just emerge on the pro circuit at 17-18-19 with their game fully formed and never adapt/add to their game again. That's not how tennis works.

Henin transitioned from lightweight finesse player to a power player between 2001 and 2003/2004, and by the time she was at her peak in 2007, she was even more of a power player than in 2004. Compare Halep today to Halep in 2014 (and earlier) and you'll see a big difference in power.

They didn't "just add pop" to their game, they had to work at it, extensively, over years and years. There's even more examples of players who built too fast and wrecked their game, failing to add meaningful power and compromising their movement.

Jankovic, for example, diminished her elite level movement in the attempt to add KPH to her ground game in the span of a single off-season, and both lost the things that made her different from the rest of the top players as well as failed to improve her power game beyond marginal gains.

The flip side is players who add to their fitness, like Safina back when she went from low top 10 ranked player to top 5 player, or to a lesser extent Petkovic and Konta, who had brittle games that needed to redline physically to work. On the more successful end, Sharapova and Azarenka both went from lousy movers to OK or even good movers when they were at their best, and they managed to sustain it longer than Petkovic and Konta (a season her and there) or Safina (two-ish consecutive years).
 

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Henin transitioned from lightweight finesse player to a power player between 2001 and 2003/2004, and by the time she was at her peak in 2007, she was even more of a power player than in 2004. Compare Halep today to Halep in 2014 (and earlier) and you'll see a big difference in power.
I disagree with this. Henin always had a decent amount of power and athleticism, but she was a slight player, and she didn't have the physique to play power shot for shot without wearing herself out. She also lacked the stature to withstand the first blow in the rally and impose herself.

In other words, what she lacked was strength and fitness. This she acquired. But the explosiveness and technique were there from the start, and was evident in quite a few of her early matches, for instance some points as a 17 year old against then No. 1 Hingis in the Aussie first round. Look how committed she was at launching herself into her shots, the racket head acceleration she could generate. In one amazing sequence, I'm conjuring from memory here a point near the end of the second set, when almost all had been lost, it is late in a rally, and her racket is going faster and faster, first with a couple of knifed slices, then ending with a big winner, and as the racket speed ratchets up, you hear the high pitch squeal of something moving very fast through the air. The last sound you might hear in that rally is a Hingis chuckle, the sort she affects nonchalantly when her opponent has generated too much power for her to handle.

I also think Henin was more of a power player in 2004 then in 2007, which was the year she played arguably the most complete game ever seen on WTA.
 

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That's the real T. She's been declared/declared herself fully healthy a couple times since the comeback, but in spite of her ground game no longer being a revelation of power tennis, she's redlining and her body can't take it.
If all her injuries were not healed during a year and half ban, forget it. She came back from that long time-off and can barely complete a tournament without injury. The While flag has been raised since the Meldonium drama.
 

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Sharapova used meldonium during competitions and training, which helped her endurance, helped to recover quickly after heavy loads. Now this is not, therefore, it is difficult for her to train as intensively as before, heavy loads lead her to injuries.
 

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"Fully healed" Pova loses her first match of the year to Jennifer Brady. She's well on her way to "attacking 2020."

 

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It's a strategic error to announce an attack beforehand.

2020 was forewarned, and ready to fight back. First battle won, with the help of MVP Jen Brady.
 
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