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http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/sport/articles/4677942?source=Evening Standard

Wade: Serena will force Venus to quit
By Kate Battersby, Evening Standard
6 May 2003

Crikey. Virginia Wade is not short of opinions. According to the 1977 Wimbledon champion, Venus Williams will not be around much longer; the Venus-Serena monopoly is "boring"; Anna Kournikova is "a lost cause"; and it is the fault of British players rather than the nation's tennis structure that the next Wade is nowhere in sight. All this before we even get started on the BBC.

Having met her, I cannot now recall why I imagined Wade would be dull and severe. She is 57, incredibly slight by comparison with today's amazon women players, and huge fun. She was 31 when she held aloft the Venus Rosewater Dish in SW19, an age by which she expects competitive tennis to be a whiskery memory for 22-year-old Venus.

"As long as Serena stays fit she will be hard to beat for years, but I don't think Venus will survive long," said Wade. "Venus has realised Serena is better than she is and she's losing heart. If the Williamses continue to monopolise the Grand Slam finals it isn't good news. It's already boring.

"But Venus is still very dedicated to Serena. I was at the Family Circle Cup in the US last month when Justine Henin-Hardenne beat Serena in the final, and apparently Venus rang their mother Oracene in the middle of the match on a mobile phone and said Oracene had to find a way of telling Serena how to win. Obviously, Venus was watching the match on television at home.

"The two sisters do live in this strange little orbit where they feed off each other. Sometimes they can be like puppies, so playful, and at others they don't interact with other people at all. I've had good moments with them and then at other times there's completely nothing, like I'm a stranger.

"Then again, when Martina Hingis was dominating so few years ago I thought that would go on forever. She was such a brilliant player with so many talents - strong mentally, great at getting herself out of problems - and of all the players she was the smartest and most interested in other things outside tennis. She didn't look down her nose at you.

"But then her game went down and became defensive. She wanted to ride horses and party, rather than put her nose to the grindstone and be single-minded.

"Then she embarrassed herself so badly with her behaviour in defeat at the French Open Final against Steffi Graf in 1999, and I thought from then on she never knew how to find a safe outlet for her frustration and anger. That's what I really think forced her out of the game."

Wade was speaking as an ambassador (there really are such things) for next month's International-Championships at Eastbournenow sponsored by motor insurance provider Hastings Direct. The grass court tournament has long been important in the warm-up to Wimbledon. This year's field includes Jennifer Capriati, 2002 champion Chanda Rubin, and the world No67 - Kournikova.

"No, Anna won't come back," said Wade. "She's a lost cause so far as getting her mind together is concerned. She hasn't had a decent coach and just doesn't want to listen. There's an arrogance and bravado about her which stands in her way. It's crazy she hasn't ever won a tournament. She has so much potential.

"I'm curious to see what's going to happen to her now anyway. So far, everything she has earned from being glamorous has been built on the back of her tennis. If she had got herself into the top five in the world, as she was definitely capable of, then she could have continued to go gangbusters on the marketing front. But now everybody has realised she just doesn't cut it on the tennis court, you wonder how long the rest can last."

The BBC will be screening Eastbourne, although at one stage - to Wade's fury - it planned to dump it.

"The BBC said the viewing figures weren't good enough but that was because it was putting it on at 11 and 12 at night," complained Wade. "Meanwhile, it shows all the men's tournament from Queen's day in and day out when frankly it's stupid showing all the early rounds. "Women's tennis is so relegated. The Grand Slam prize money should be equal. It's irrelevant that women don't play five sets. The price of a theatre ticket isn't dictated by how long the play is. Wimbledon is so stuck in a rut."

If any outfit in tennis really requires an ambassador to state its case, it must be the Lawn Tennis Association, always blamed for the dearth of young British players coming into the senior ranks. But Wade insists it is not the LTA's fault.

"The foundation is there," she said. "But I get very despondent listening to good young players. I'd like them to be more brazen. There just isn't a good attitude, and it becomes contagious. Mind you, the LTA could do some instant modernising by dropping the L in LTA. Just call it tennis. You have to get away from that boring, upper middle class element of grey people."

Let no one mistake Virginia Wade for a boring grey person, that's all.
 

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I agree with some of the stuff she said. Hingis was the best out there and should still be out there. Kounikova has lost the plot a bit but hopefully will get it back together. Venus is a mystery-is she better than serena??-if not will she want to stay as williams no.2?? --i agree i think venus will quit tennis before serena and concentrate on her interior design--although i reckon she will want a few more slams before she does.
 

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sounds like she's a hateful opinonated bitch.
 

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well, she certainly has an opinion. the question just is: is it an intelligent one? :eek:
 

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shes fucking English

what else do you expect from us :eek:

Seriously Wade needs to STFU. no-one cares about her anymore. hell she doesnt even have an English accent. shes got a South African accent or something.

when you got idiots like that supposed "roll-models" for the British game, is it any wonder why we cant produce?

she needs to sit in at tea mornings and start collecting her pension instead of sucking money out of a game that doesnt even remember...i HATE it when she [email protected] Wimby cos shes a typical snobby-nosed £*%&£ :eek::rolleyes:
 

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Well...

Personally there are points that I do agree with.

The Venus and Serena Grand Slam finals are boring to watch. Any other match-up is MUCH more exciting. When Serena and Venus play in the final, neither wants to win to disappoint the other but neither wants to lose to disappoint themselves.

You could see it in Venus' face that she was losing heart in her match with Serena at the Aus Open final :(

Admittedly the domination is fantastic, to see such a strong pair of players taking the game apart is phenomenal but it IS starting to lose its edge and although they are BOTH fantastic players, watching them play each other bores the socks off me.

As for Anna? Well... She's playing in a 25K this week. I'm a little off-put by that. She's ranked 67th in the world and she's gone down to a 25K? Surely the 75K in St Gaudens was well within her capacity?
 

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Suddenly everybody's got an opinion about Venus and Serena. Before the domination, everyone was talking about they don't play enough and they could win a slam and so on. Now that the sisters are playing and winning, there's a problem. I just don't understand these folks anymore. You just can't please them. What do they expect, for Serena and Venus to play the same tourneys and lose intentionally cos Virginia doesn't want to see an all williams final?

Why should they be shortchanged cos they are sisters and the other players are not up to par?

I am so tired of this, it's not funny.
 

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Well...

I reckon the initial thoughts were that it's fantastic for the game but I agree that people now are getting a bit tired of it :sad:

I know I'm tired of watching them play in the final of a grand slam but they can't help it can they? It doesn't detract from my overall love for the game but i must admit that williams-williams matches are just not competitive enough for me to watch.

Ho hum, it'll all end in tears and handbags... I don't want to dispute the prowess of the Williams sisters being phenomenal at what they do but I sometimes wish someone would come by and really give them what for in a tourney.

And hell it's ma opinion and ma pie, now GET OFFA MA PIE :(
 
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What she says is quite in tact with what I wrote 4 monthes ago ( http://www.wtaworld.com/showthread.php?threadid=51844 ). Already back then Venus Williams had symptoms of early burnout, and continuous dominance by Serena will only increase those symptoms.. What her father suggests actually makes sense - go take a sabbatical and return when motivation is back.
 

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One thing seems very true.

Tennis has more opinionated former champions than just about any sport I can think of.

But just what exactly makes these ex-players think they can get into other people's minds, I really don't know.

It sort of seems to me that one problem is that far too many ex-players hang around the sport far too long, trying to make their living off a sport they can no longer play well enough to earn money at.

Wade said something there about Hingis that has some truth in it, but the way she phrased it is insulting and demeaning. She said Martina "wanted to ride horses and party....rather than "put her nose to the grindstone and be single minded."

Okay, Martina had boyfriends, but she was by no means a party girl. Wade had girlfriends. Nobody slammed her private life.

Did Martina ride horses? Sure. Did she refuse to become single minded?

Right again!

But that is her right, just as it is the right of Venus to want her design business and Serena to want to be in show buiness.

You do NOT automatically lack character because you don't want to devote your entire life to hitting a fuzzy little yellow ball back and forth across a net.

Personally, the thing Martina and the sisters have in common, aside from from the fact that all three of them won more slam titles than Wade, is that they all have other interests. I applaud that in all three of them.

And I don't think you will find any of them hanging around the sport in their twilight years, still hoping for some attention or possibly to make a living off tennis,
 

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But Venus is still very dedicated to Serena. I was at the Family Circle Cup in the US last month when Justine Henin-Hardenne beat Serena in the final, and apparently Venus rang their mother Oracene in the middle of the match on a mobile phone and said Oracene had to find a way of telling Serena how to win. Obviously, Venus was watching the match on television at home.
How exactly does she know this?? Through 4th party hearsay(sp?)? I mean WTFF??
 

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Thank it was an interesting article
 

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Well said TonyP. It is just her opinion, not the gospel according to Virginia Wade.
 

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How can we doubt Virginia? She was the Wimbledon Champion and knows more about the game than some of us ever will. I can sit here and say her OPINION is wrong, and think I am always right, but I really do see where she is coing from.
Everything she said was true think.
 

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Virginia Wade has always been a Williams hater. So, none of this does not suprise me. Who cares if she says it's sooooo boring? Maybe Virginia should take up deer hunting or find another hobby.

Some of these former champions really should close their mouth, because they really are hurting women's tennis instead of helping the game.
 

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BTW, it is so true that Venus has lost her competitive side because of Serena.
If anybody else was in front of Vee, she wold so take them out with force...but with Serena she plays agressive, hits the ball, but the fire in her eyes is gone, she looks out of energy. but hey, at least she gives her best, but emotions take hold sometime, and she don't wanna beat up on lil Serena... although Venus messed up, because Serena ain't so little anymore... girl is pounding everybody, and will continue to pound Venus if Venus doesn't wake up, smell the coffeee, and play like she did in 2000-2001, which is serve in, power approach shot, swing volley put away. Classic Venus Williams.
Miss u Vee
:)
 
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