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The level just keeps on dropping. Will Sam Stouser, Caroline, Azerenka or anybody of the youngies step up and force the rest to bring up their games. This is seriously getting painful.
I have to agree with you here Footie, although I do so with a heavy heart. The women's...
I have to agree with you here Footie, although I do so with a heavy heart. The women's game is in trouble at the moment. I don't wish to take anything away from Li Na, Schiavone, Zvonareva and Stosur but these are tour veterans who had never made a GS semi-final until 2009 after a decade or more on tour. Over the past 18 months they have 7 GS final appearances between them and two have lifted the trophy. During that time not one player under the age of 25 has made a GS final.
I think you can trace the root of the problem back to 2008. In the past a player achieved the top ranking by taking on and besting the incumbent. But in 2008 Henin retired while still #1. We then had a succession of players who had to deal with the pressure of top billing without the confidence gained from having taken down their predecessor. The presence of Serena and Kim winning slams but not playing many tour events dragged out this process for another year or two. The result has been that the players who should be at the top of the game at the moment, Ivanovic, Safina, Jankovic and Kuznetsova, have fallen by the wayside. Add to that Sharapova's shoulder problems and Golovin's career cruelly cut short by injury, and you have a lost generation of star players.
Into this unusual situation we now have a new generation of players who are trying to make their mark. Wozniacki, Azarenka, Kvitova, Pavlyuchenkova, Petkovic et al may be far from complete players at the moment but they find themselves on a tour that doesn't force them to up their game. Come the slams they are faced with players who can call upon a wealth of experience of having faced Serena and Venus Williams, Henin, Davenport, Mauresmo and Clijsters and and are not at all intimidated by the newcomers.
Hopefully, one of these younger players can rise to the challenge this year. I think the best bet to do that is Kvitova. She is probably the most improved player over the past year (having climbed from 62 to 8) and has the best offensive game of any of her generation. In spite of this she may also have more room for improvement.
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Bobbito ,I agree with what your saying about the gap since Henin retired,regarding the no ...
Bobbito ,I agree with what your saying about the gap since Henin retired,regarding the no 1 slot,but this happened 30 years ago too,when Austin and Jaeger went out the game ,whilst at the top of the sport,thats not to say they were better than Evert or Navratilova at the time ,but were only a season or so away from being so,What saved womens tennis then, was the intense parity between these two for a period of about 5 years ,unusual circumstances,i,ll grant you ,but both saw their chances and took the game to new levels ,that unfortunately is not happening today ,and whilst i was delighted to see Schiavone defend as far as the final,cant help but think she should not have been there a second year in a row far less another 29 year old capture her first title for very little effort.The annoying thing ,for me anyway ,is the wta keeps telling us about the great depth in the womens game,as if we were not to believe our own eyes .
Con I find myself agreeing with so much of what you are saying but am mystified at your co...
Con I find myself agreeing with so much of what you are saying but am mystified at your conclusion.
I agree that young players are taught power at the expense of other skills.
I agree that players need to develop a wider range of skills and learn some tactical nous.
I also agree that Serena and Kim are not better players than they were five years ago, if anything the opposite is true. Yet despite their injury problems they continue to win slams.
How is any of this consistent with the idea that "The standard has not dropped, it has gone upThe standard has not dropped, it has gone up but it is STILL not good enough to beat experienced and seasoned players"?
Let's remember, most these "seasoned and experienced players" weren't winning anything when they were in their prime. If the standard had truly been raised, Schiavone, Zvonareva, Li Na and Stosur wouldn't be able to compete.
To answer a couple of points from your previous comment. You said "You and several others are making the same misconception here that because the Williamses are not playing, the standard has dropped." No, I am not. had the Williams sisters been active on the tour over the past year and winning everything at their age, that too would have been a sign of a weakness in the women's game.
You also seem to have misread my question. i asked not whether you could name a player under 20 with even half the skillset of a finesse player, I asked if you could name such a player under the age of 25. The answer i suspect is still no. That does not bode well for the future of the women's game.
Part of the cause may have been highlighted in another topic. There is less variety in the playing surfaces on tour these days. If the grass court season was longer and the grass courts faster then players would have to learn to play a good slice backhand, a slice serve and volley well. Likewise, if the clay courts were slower and bouncier then players would need to use angles more, employ variety of spin and develop a decent kick serve. As things stand, the surfaces are being changed to suit players' limited skillsets rather than players expanding their skillsets to cope with a variety of playing surfaces. That can only be bad for the game.
Con - Firstly let me clarify what you appear to have picked up on. The "2010" li...
Con - Firstly let me clarify what you appear to have picked up on. The "2010" list was a typo and should have read 2011. The two lists are the current rankings and the 2006 Wimbledon seedings. The top 10 ranked players in 2006 included Davenport, Petrova and Pierce who missed Wimbledon.
Here's another game you can play with such lists. Who would win if the 2006 players played their current counterparts?
Mauresmo 2006 v Wozniacki 2011? Amelie's all court game would be too much for Wozi I think, though she'd go down fighting.
Clijsters 2006 would beat the 2011 version.
Henin 2006 v Zvonareva 2011 would have been a mismatch, as were all six of their actual encounters.
Sharapova 2006 v Li Na 2011? I remember Masha's US Open win that year against Justine. Awesome and far too good for Li.
Davenport 2006 v Azarenka 2011? Lindsay would have blown her off the court.
Further down the list, Dementieva 2006 v Kvitova 2011 would be an interesting match.
Con - You will no doubt remember then that Mauresmo was, by that time, troubled by persist...
Con - You will no doubt remember then that Mauresmo was, by that time, troubled by persistent injuries, very close to retirement and a shadow of the player she had been three years earlier. The comparison was with the 2006 Mauresmo who won Australian Open and Wimbledon titles, was ranked #1 among a very strong group of players and had a 7-2 winning record against Justine, Kim and Serena for the year.
Wayn - You might like to check the head to head between Henin and Zvonareva. Justine won all six in straight sets without ever being taken to a tie break. Last year, Zvonareva's most successful year, Henin thrashed her 6-4 6-1. As I said, it would be a mismatch.
Do you mean Sam STOSUR, Victoria AZARENKA ? I witnessed plenty of good women's tennis...
Do you mean Sam STOSUR, Victoria AZARENKA ?
I witnessed plenty of good women's tennis at the French Open. It can be argued the quality at the very top is currently thin, the depth in women's tennis has never been better. I am no fan of the current number 1's charmless "get the ball past me" brand of tennis. Great Britain is still no nearer to having regular top 20 players, let alone anyone in the top 50 - and when they do face any of that elite, the results are predictable. Li Na's triumph at Roland Garros promises to open up the huge Chinese market, we have had a Tunisian winner of the girls tournament and keep your eye on 17 year old French prodigy Caroline Garcia.
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I agree that the current state of women's tennnis is dropping nevertheless I just want...
I agree that the current state of women's tennnis is dropping nevertheless I just want to thank the Li Na and Schiavone for providing us with a good final.
The top 4 players failed to reach the semi-finals at Roland Garros whereas the top 4 men tennis players all reached the semi-finals.
The last 6 Grand Slam finals have been contested by players over the age of 25 hence its about time the youngsters make their mark in Grand Slams.
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