Wednesday, June 06, 2012

RG.11- All Quiet on The Radwanska Front

And never the twain shall meet. Until now, that is. Again.

Maria Sharapova and Petra Kvitova spent the first ten days of this Roland Garros watching the WTA landscape shift and crack underneath the feet of every other top player on earth not named Samantha. Both had their own anxious moments, but went about their business. They never let on that they might have been keeping a watchful eye on the other throughout the proceedings, knowing from experience that even a good performance on their part hadn't necessarily been good ENOUGH to defeat the other when their paths had crossed a few times over the past year. When this RG began, no one was talking about a possible semifinal meeting between the two on a surface largely considered the "worst" for both. But, as it's turned out, nothing could stop this fateful clash from taking place. Not Serena nor Li, who didn't last long enough in Paris to get the chance. Not even The Radwanska.

As most of the rest of the field had melted away, Day 11 gave Kaia Kanepi and Yaroslava Shvedova the last chance to head off what probably should have been seen as the inevitable. But there was nothing -- other than the bad sides of themselves, that is -- that was going to prevent what has become THE marquee matchup on the WTA tour from adding another intriguing chapter. Both Sharapova and Kvitova's matches started at the same times on Chatrier and Lenglen Courts, respectively, but it was the Russian who took care of business first.

Her opponent, Kanepi, is a capable player, but lacks a game armed with the sort of "intangible" weapon that has traditionally frustrated the likes of Sharapova. In fact, both players are similar, with big first serves and groundstrokes, and with their court movement being their trait that is most exploitable by an opponent. As far as Sharapova was concerned, this was like a "Senior Skip Day" for a player who joked the other day about being "awful with game plans," as Kanepi utilizes none of the sort of frustratingly clever tactics -- pace-slowing spins, tricky drop shots, etc. -- that make a certain Pole with a mean-spirited Jekyll-esque alter ego such a headache-inducing nuisance. With such a straightforward opponent placed in front of her, Sharapova just had to play her version of the same game BETTER than Kanepi did. Being the better player under the same conditions, rather than worry about being rope-a-doped, the Russian needed only to beat the Estonian to the punch. And that's what she did.

Oh, she didn't blitz Kanepi. There's a reason Kaia's a four-time slam quarterfinalist, after all. In fact, just as occurred during Sharapova's Round of 16 match with Klara Zakopalova, this contest began with a string of three breaks of serve (servers won just three of the first fourteen points) that didn't end until Sharapova held for 3-1. Finally settled, though, she won the set 6-2. In the 2nd, Sharapova had a brief letdown, double-faulting on break point and falling behind 2-0. But she soon turned things around. She held at love for a 4-2 advantage with a blazing down-the-line forehand that a flat-footed Kanepi could only watch helplessly from the middle of the court.

Kanepi seemed to give up at that point, though she was only down one break and with Sharapova still capable of throwing in a few DF to give her a stepping stone back into the match. As a result, Kanepi was easily broken in the next game for 5-2. On Sharapova's serve one game later, Kanepi won an eighteen-shot really. But rather than celebrate, she shot an exasperated look to the Players Box and made some sort of comment about it being the "one point" that she'd actually played well all day. She ended up going up triple break point on Sharapova's serve and getting the break. If only she'd kept her concentration a few minutes before, it might have meant something.

But it didn't. Sharapova's big return game took care of things after that, and when Kanepi framed a backhand on the Russian's second match point it was finally all over, 6-2/6-3. After committing twelve double-faults in the heavy conditions of two days ago, Sharapova had just four today.

Kvitova, as is her wont, allowed her match with qualifier Shvedova -- at #142, the lowest-ranked player to reach the RG QF since 1983 -- to have a few more twists and turns.

While the Russian-turned-Kazakh played well, as usual, the match revolved around whether or not the Czech could find the court with her thunderous groundstrokes. Shvedova went up a break in the 1st, leading 3-0 before Kvitova came charging back with a string of winners to break for 3-2. Bouncing between "in" and "out" of form, Kvitova immediately gave the break back then, at 5-2 down, climbed out of a 15/30 service hole with a back-to-back-to-back winner-ace-ace combination punctuated by the little bark that means she's "feeling it." But it was too little, too late. Shvedova held for 6-3.

In the 2nd, Kvitova throttled eleven winners in four games to take a 3-1 lead and take the set 6-2. Her momentum carried over to the 3rd, as she went up a break at 2-0, then hit another bad patch and lost three straight games. Up 40/15 on Shvedova's serve, Kvitova committed four straight errors and found herself down 4-2. But that's when the "inevitable" aspects of today's results re-entered the equation.

As Shvedova's nerves began to cause her toss to go awry, Kvitova decided it was time to put her foot down. As she said after the match, she's "wasn't doing to let" the match get away from her. She went up quickly on the Kazakh's serve, whacking a forehand winner to knot the score at 4-4. After holding serve, she finally won her fourth straight game when Shvedova's backhand sailed long on the Czech's second match point. She won 3-6/6-3/6-4.

So, here we are. For the third time at the past four slams, the Russian and the Czech are once again set to attempt to bludgeon the other into submission from opposite sides of a tennis net. In their previous encounters over the last year, the reality of their matches have more than lived up to the hype, too. Kvitova beat down a not-playing-badly Sharapova in last year's Wimbledon final, but Sharapova is 2-0 against Kvitova this season because of her ability to play the biggest points of their matches better. Just a reminder:

Wimbledon Final -- Kvitova d. Sharapova
Kvitova became the first slam champion born in the 1990s, and the youngest since Sharapova won at SW19 in 2004. The Czech didn't hit her first ace until match point (dramatic much?), but never gave an inch of ground to the aggressive Sharapova that afternoon, beating the Russian at her own game... sort of like what Sharapova did to Serena at Wimbledon to claim HER first major.

Australian Open SF - Sharapova d. Kvitova
Sharapova played the big points far better, converting 5/5 break point attempts while Kvitova was just 3/14. Still, the difference in the match was miniscule. At 4-4 in the 3rd, with Sharapova down love/30, her long shot was overturned via a challenge. She ended up holding serve, then getting the break to win. In the end, Sharapova held an 86-84 advantage in points, with the overturned challenge -- on a point that would have given Kvitova a break point to get the opportunity to serve out the match -- preventing an 85-85 deadlock.

Stuttgart SF - Sharapova d. Kvitova
Earlier this spring on red clay, Sharapova once again outdid Kvitova on big points. The Czech was 0/10 on break points until she finally converted BP #11 on MP to force the 2nd set tie-break. She fell down 3-0 there, and Sharapova won the semi and went on to take the title. This loss ended Kvitova's 27-match (31 unofficially) indoor winning streak.

What will the next chapter give us? Probably something good. Like Kanepi, Kvitova is a pretty straightforward player, too. But she's something else entirely. Unlike the Estonian, and most everyone else on tour, even if Sharapova executes her game tomorrow she can STILL be outhit by the Czech (see Wimbledon). As far as Kvitova is concerned, she can't expect her opponent's nerves to fray in the most tense moments of play, unlike with Shvedova today. It was precisely Sharapova's better play in those moments that prevented Kvitova from playing for the AO title in January, and allowed the Russian to kick off her great clay season with a title in Stuttgart, too.

As was the case in their three other meetings since last summer, it'l be a match of strength vs. strength, and the difference between winning and losing might come down to a few spare points.

Mmmmm. Tasty.

...Sharapova's Final Four berth means that Hordettes have now appeared in 29 of the last 33 slams, including at every Roland Garros since Nadia Petrova accomplished the feat back in 2003.

...AWARDS: Samantha Stosur gets her second RG "Mademoiselle Opportunity" award to go along with the one she claimed two years ago. Doubles, Sara Errani & Roberta Vinci reached the final by winning their 18th straight match, and 26th in a row on clay. They'll both be trying to win their first-ever slam title against a still-to-be-determined team. For a while, it looked as if 2011 RG champs Andrea Hlavackova & Lucie Hradecka were going to get a chance to defend their title, but then Maria Kirilenko & Nadia Petrova came back from a set and a break down to knot the match and send it to a deciding super-tiebreak that will be the first contest up on Chatrier on Day 12. Of note, and truthfully a little surprisingly, neither Kirilenko nor Petrova have even won a slam doubles title, so the chance remains for a final with ALL FOUR players looking for their maiden major crown.

The Mixed final won't feature the intriguing match-up of doubles partners Sania Mirza and Elena Vesina, and THEIR partners, Mahesh Bhupathi and Leander Paes, former doubles partners who plain don't like each other. The all-Indian pair of Mirza/Bhupathi reached the final, but Vesnina/Paes were upset by Klaudia Jans-Ignacik & Santiago Gonzalez. Gonzalez and Jans-Ignacik have never won a slam title (Jans has never won a doubles title any bigger than a low-level WTA International event, in fact), while Mirza & Bhupathi shared the AO Mixed crown in '09. Overall, Bhupathi has won eleven slam crowns, three in Doubles with Paes and one with Max Mirnyi, and seven Mixed with seven different women, with his first coming all the way back in 1997.

Just in case you were wondering, here are the seven women that Bhupathi has won with: Daniela Hantuchova, Rika Hikari, Martina Hingis, Elena Likhovtseva, Mirza, Mary Pierce and Ai Sugiyama.

...the QF are now set in both singles and doubles junior play. #1-seeded Taylor Townsend (USA), who took nearly three hours to eject Carol Zhao (CAN) the other day, went another 2:00 today without the same successful result, as she lost to Anna Schmiedlova (SVK) 5-7/6-2/6-1. #12 Anett Kontaveit gave Estonian tennis SOMETHING to cheer about today, as she knocked out #7 Eugenie Bouchard (CAN). Both Townsend and Bouchard are still alive in the Girls Doubles QF, though.

Elsewhere, Germany's Antonia Lottner, who upset #4-seed Irina Khromacheva (RUS) the other day, continued her run with a win over Canada's Francoise Abanda to reach the QF.

In Boys play, Czech Adam Pavlasek, Kvitova's boyfriend, is alive in both singles and doubles. He'll face #1 Luke Saville (AUS), the AO Junior champ, next. Saville defeated Pavlasek in the Boys SF in Melbourne. Also, Max De Vroome (NED), brother of girls player Indy, advanced to the QF on Day 11, as well.

...meanwhile, in Wheelchair play, THERE WAS A SHOCKER as the #1-seeded Dutch player lost!!! No, it wasn't Esther Vergeer. Actually, it was #1 Men's seed Maikel Scheffers. Vergeer won her match over Yui Kamiji to reach the singles semis, and also advanced to the doubles final, where she'll go for her 21st slam doubles crown.

=MIDDLE-ROUND AWARDS - 3rd-QF Rounds (Days 6-11)=
TOP PLAYER: Samantha Stosur/AUS
...she's the woman with the most successful RG past still left in the draw, and she's yet to lose a set at this one.
RISERS: Sara Errani/ITA & Dominika Cibulkova/SVK
...combined, they knocked off two former RG champions, the winners of four slams, and the #1 seed. And the Italian next plays another slam champ for the right to face off with a woman who's either won three or one more slam in the final.
SURPRISES: Varvara Lepchenko/USA & Klaudia Jans-Ignacik/POL
...Lepchenko: naturalized, and hoping that loop holes and rules interpretations don't take away the Olympic berth she rightly earned in Paris. Jans-Ignacik: naturally, wondering whether a MIXED DOUBLES title for a Pole will satiate The Radwanska's hunger.
VETERAN: Klara Zakopalova/CZE & Kaia Kanepi/EST
...both matched their career-best slam results, AND left muttering under their breath about how they played against a certain Russian. Hmmm, could they be easy converts for a certain looking-for-recruitments purveyor of mahem?
FRESH FACES Sloane Stephens/USA & Arantxa Rus/NED
...even without an Olympic berth, Stephens could be a true star by the end of the summer. One year after knocking off Clijsters in Paris, Rus had a BETTER tournament this year.
COMEBACK: Yaroslava Shvedova/KAZ
...she didn't become the third qualifier to reach a slam SF in the Open era (and the first in 13 years), but her singles career seems to finally be back on an upward trajectory.
DOWN: Victoria Azarenka/BLR & Li Na/CHN
...the #1 seed and the defending champion didn't last to the Final 8. Now, NEITHER might hold those titles by the end of this weekend.
JUNIOR BREAKOUTS: Antonia Lottner/GER & Anna Schmiedlova/SVK
...hmmm, a German causing havoc in Paris. Not even going to TOUCH that one. Three of the Girls Final 8 have won ITF titles in 2012 -- including Anett Kontaveit & Annika Beck, both of whom have claimed one. Schmiedlova has won four, as many as any other player on the entire circuit, junior eligible or not.

*NOT A MASTERPIECE, but the most dramatic middle-round match*
4th Rd. - #2 Maria Sharapova/RUS d. Klara Zakopalova/CZE 6-4/6-7/6-2
...and The Radwanska sighed.


a reason to like the French: the fans were decidedly rooting against Andy Murray early on in his QF match with David Ferrer, one of the more under-appreciated players on either tour and a more "worthy of admiration" FOURTH-best player in the world than the Scot.


a reason to not like the French: many fans started rooting FOR Murray later in the match, when the prospect of him pushing the contest into a 5th set became possible. Thankfully, those fans didn't get their wish.

...and, finally, I'm not even sure what to say about the nickname Brad Gilbert hung on Kvitova today. Without a pause for dramatic effect, which was necessary just to prepare your eyes, he actually called her "K-Vitty" as if it was the most natural thing to do in the world.

How Chris McKendry kept a straight face when he said it is anyone's else. I surely couldn't.

Hmmm, now the real question: is that one better or worse than BG's "Dickie Gasket" moniker for Richard Gasquet?

#6 Samantha Stosur/AUS vs. #21 Sara Errani/ITA
#4 Petra Kvitova/CZE vs. #2 Maria Sharapova/RUS

#1 Novak Djokovic/SRB vs.#3 Roger Federer/SUI
#6 David Ferrer/ESP vs. #2 Rafael Nadal/ESP

#4 Errani/Vinci (ITA/ITA) vs. #7 Kirilenko/Petrova (RUS/RUS) or #5 Hlavackova/Hradecka (CZE/CZE)

#1 Mirnyi/Nestor (BLR/CAN) vs. #14 Bracciali/Starace (ITA/ITA)
#10 Qureshi/Rojer (PAK/FRA) vs. #2 Bryan/Bryan (USA/USA)

Jans-Ignacik/S.Gonzalez (POL/MEX) vs. #7 Mirza/Bhupathi (IND/IND)

Anna Schmiedlova/SVK vs. #5 Katerina Siniakova/CZE
Antonia Lottner/GER vs. Clothilde De Bernardi/FRA
#12 Anett Kontaveit/EST vs. #16 Allie Kiick/USA
#9 Chalena Scholl/USA vs. #2 Annika Beck/GER

#1 Luke Saville/AUS vs. #11 Adam Pavlasek/CZE
Noah Rubin/USA vs. #5 Filip Peliwo/CAN
#8 Mitchell Krueger/USA vs. Max De Vroome/NED
#6 Kimmer Coppejans/BEL vs. Kyle Edmund/GBR

#1 Bouchard/Townsend (CAN/USA) vs. Arcangioli/De Bernardi (FRA/FRA)
#14 Abanda/Vickery (CAN/USA) vs. #6 Gonzalez/Haddad Maia (PAR/BRA)
Bencic/Vajdova (SUI/SVK) vs. Sasnovich/Vekic (BLR/CRO)
Danilina/Kan (KAZ/RUS) vs. #2 Gavrilova/Khromacheva (RUS/RUS)

#1 Broady/Ward-Hibbert (GBR/GBR) vs. Couacaud/Favrot (FRA/FRA)
Kadhe/Panta Herreros (IND/PAR) vs. Harris/Kyrgios (AUS/AUS)
Gomez/Kwiakowski (MEX/USA) vs. Monteiro/Quinzi (BRA/ITA)
#7 Pavlasek/Safranek (CZE/CZE) vs. #2 Milojevic/Ferreira Silva (SRB/POR)

2006 Nicole Vaidisova, CZE
2007 Justine Henin, BEL *
2008 Ana Ivanovic, SRB *
2009 Svetlana Kuznetsova, RUS *
2010 Samantha Stosur, AUS
2011 Li Na, CHN *
2012 Samantha Stosur, AUS
* - won title

[Career slam SF - active]
20...Serena Williams, USA (17-3)
19...Venus Williams, USA (14-5)
16...Kim Clijsters, BEL (8-8)
6...Jelena Jankovic, SRB (1-5)
5...Svetlana Kuznetsova, RUS (4-1)
5...Dinara Safina, RUS (3-2)
4...Ana Ivanovic, SRB (3-1)
4...Vera Zvonareva, RUS (2-2)
4...Caroline Wozniacki, DEN (1-3)
[2012 WTA SF]
7...Agnieszka Radwanska, POL (3-4)
6...Victoria Azarenka, BLR (6-0)
6...Angelique Kerber, GER (2-4)
5...SARA ERRANI, ITA (3-1)
[2012 WTA SF - by nation ]
7...Poland, Romania
6...Belarus, CZECH REPUBLIC, France
[2010-12 slam SF]
3...Serena Williams, USA (3-0)
3...Kim Clijsters, BEL (2-1)
3...Li Na, CHN (2-1)
3...Vera Zvonareva, RUS (2-1)
3...Caroline Wozniacki, DEN (0-3)
[2010-12 slam SF - by nation]
4...Belgium, China, CZECH REPUBLIC, United States

2004 Anastasia Myskina, RUS & Elena Dementieva, RUS
2005 Mary Pierce, FRA
2006 Svetlana Kuznetsova, RUS
2007 Maria Sharapova, RUS
2008 Ana Ivanovic, SRB
2009 Samantha Stosur, AUS
2010 Francesca Schiavone, ITA
2011 Francesca Schiavone, ITA & Li Na, CHN
2012 Samantha Stosur, AUS

2003 Nadia Petrova
2004 Elena Dementieva (RU), Anastasia Myskina (W)
2005 Elena Likhovtseva, Nadia Petrova
2006 Svetlana Kuznetsova (RU)
2007 Maria Sharapova
2008 Svetlana Kuznetsova, Dinara Safina (RU)
2009 Svetlana Kuznetsova (W), Dinara Safina (RU)
2010 Elena Dementieva
2011 Maria Sharapova
2012 Maria Sharapova

[through QF]
15-9...RUS (w/ Sharapova)
10-8...CZE (w/ Kvitova)
9-4...ITA (w/ Errani)
6-4...AUS (w/ Stosur)

4...United States (2/2)
2...Czech Repubilc (1/1)
2...Germany (2/0)

TOP EARLY-ROUND (1r-2r): #2 Maria Sharapova/RUS
TOP MIDDLE-ROUND (3r-QF): #6 Samantha Stosur/AUS
TOP QUALIFYING MATCH: Q1: #1q Kiki Bertens/NED d. Annika Beck/GER 6-1/4-6/9-7
TOP EARLY-RD. MATCH (1r-2r): 1st Rd. - Virginie Razzano/FRA d. #5 Serena Williams/USA 4-6/7-6(5)/6-3
TOP MIDDLE-RD. MATCH (3r-QF): 4th Rd. - #2 Maria Sharapova/RUS d. Klara Zakopalova/CZE 6-4/6-7/6-2
FIRST WINNER: #6 Samantha Stosur/AUS (def. Baltacha/GBR)
FIRST SEED OUT: #30 Mona Barthel/GER (lost 1st Rd. to Lauren Davis/USA)
UPSET QUEENS: United States
NATION OF POOR SOULS: Romania (1-5 in 1st Rd; A.Cadantu double-bageled & 18 total points)
LAST WILD CARDS STANDING: Claire Feuerstein/FRA, Melanie Oudin/USA & Irena Pavlovic/FRA (all 2nd Rd.)
LAST PASTRY STANDING: Mathilde Johansson/FRA (3rd Rd.)
IT: Sara Errani/ITA
COMEBACK PLAYER: Yaroslava Shvedova/KAZ
CRASH & BURN: #5 Serena Williams/USA (lost 1st Rd. to Razzano/FRA; led 6-4 & 5-1 in 2nd set tie-break; was 46-0 in career slam 1st Rd. matches)
ZOMBIE QUEEN: #1 Victoria Azarenka/BLR (came back from down 7-6/4-0, BPs for 5-0, to Brianti/ITA in 1st Rd.; avoided earliest exit ever by RG women's #1 seed)
JOIE DE VIVRE: Virginie Razzano/FRA
DOUBLES STAR Nominees: Errani/Vinci (ITA/ITA), S.Mirza/IND, K.Jans-Ignacik/POL, Kirilenko/Petrova (RUS/RUS)

All for Day 11. More tomorrow.


Blogger Diane said...

Nothing is as bad as Dickie Gasket. Not K-Vitty. Not ever Wicker Chair.

And someone needs to tell Chris Mc. that there is no one on the tour named Shihvidova. But then, someone needs to tell her a lot of things.

Wed Jun 06, 06:27:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Yeah, I'm with Diane. Kvitty is kind of catchy. Dickie Gasquet is just atrocious.

I also heard Shivadova and was like, what's she going to do? Shiv someone?


Didn't know you didn't like Murray. Also, didn't know that you liked Ferrer so much. I like Ferru's attitude but not his grunt.

Like how you found every way possible to give everyone but KVTY an award so as to not invoke the c----



Shivadova's mid-match smiles are very nice. She seems like a very pleasant and stable person. Wish she had chosen to immigrate to the USA instead.

Wed Jun 06, 06:49:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Kvitova's boyfriend is still a junior? She really is a cougar. I'm really surprised because girls and boys that age are at such different maturity levels....well at least in the States. Maybe it's different in Europe. Hoping Diane will weigh in with psychoanalysis :)

Wed Jun 06, 06:52:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

I did list Murray on the Anti-Backspin Team, but I've never said anything about Ferrer. He's a great player for a U.S. Open night match because, if you've got the time, you can just sit back and watch and rarely ever be disappointed... even when he's often played Nadal in the past. Not that I expect anything other than a Nadal win in the SF, of course.

Truthfully, Kvitova has been up-and-down enough that I didn't think she should have gotten a place. Neither did Sharapova, after that whole Zakopalova near-fiasco. Plus, after a young player wins a slam I sort of move them out of "Riser" consideration, so Petra only really had the "Top Player" spot in which to go... and Stosur's been pretty spotless.

Oh, I didn't mention this, but I think I've got the market cornered on "horses in my stable" for this Final Four. Last RG, I picked Kvitova to win -- so if she does, I can say I was just a year early. Before the season, I picked Stosur to win -- so I can say that I saw the future quite clearly. And, of course, I picked Sharapova at the start of the tournament -- so I could shove that in Carl's face. So, it's a win-win-win situation for me, I guess.

In other words, this probably means Errani will win. Hahaha.

Wed Jun 06, 08:34:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Hmmm, just thought of something -- I should start calling Gilbert "B-Gilly." ;)

Wed Jun 06, 08:35:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

At Kvitova's age, I don't think having a young boyfriend "means" anything. And if it does, it's probably all good :)

I am a huge Ferrer fan, and have been for years. He's my favorite Spaniard on the ATP tour.

Wed Jun 06, 11:15:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Zidane said...

Ferrer all the way to the final (and to the championship if Djokovic beats Federer)! I've always enjoyed watching Ferrer play. He shows an impressive toughness, nice and often spectacular shots and has a hard-to-dislike persona. In my top 3 of my favourite current men players, with Federer and Raonic.

(It looks like a group coming out.)

Thu Jun 07, 01:30:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

K-Vitty isn't executing her touch well today and it's killing her.

Thu Jun 07, 12:19:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...


You should read this (if you haven't already). it's about your number 1 girl.

Pretty insightful stuff...and did she just admit to...???

Thu Jun 07, 12:30:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Zidane said...

Is it just me or Henin's interview confirms what I had always suspected: that she is not a happy person at all? Almost all of her answers are plain depressive. I wouldn't trade my life for her shoes.

For the question on tears, I distinctively remember her crying when she retired from her Australian Open final against Maumo. But it's normal that she might not remember. She was a great champion.

But Sharapova's joy today at becoming #1 again. Wow! It made me smile full-teeth for 10 minutes! The final promises to be exciting!

Thu Jun 07, 02:07:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...


"Pretty insightful stuff...and did she just admit to...???"

I guess you're referring to the whole wave incident there? Yeah, well, it was pretty clear she was in the wrong there, and not just in retrospect. But in the heat of the competitive moment, it's mostly understandable, even if easy to disagree with (which I very much did at the time). It's sort of like when a batter in baseball gets awarded first base for being grazed by a pitch, but replays show that it probably didn't really happen.


Hmmm, I didn't really sense any sort of depression. But she's had a lot of tough things in her past -- her mother, her family's estrangement, her marriage, etc. -- and I imagine she's got some regrets now about so many things, although the decisions she made at the time -- often to further her tennis career -- were probably right for her AT THE TIME.

Thu Jun 07, 02:25:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

Henin has said these kinds of things on more than one occasion; it isn't new. It is, however, a chance for her to make the conversation into one about her favorite subject.

Thu Jun 07, 02:45:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

I was just surprised that she said she didn't like to be alone. I think if she addresses that (basically liking herself), then she will be much happier. (Caveat: This is just an opinion...and I don't know her...I'm not a professional therapist)


Yeah, actually, the whole wave thing didn't bother it was rather human. I was just surprised that she was talking about it openly.

Trying to "make it/break through" is so hard...especially when things are stacked against you (i.e. not part of the existing tennis establishment like being from UK/FR/US/AUS, family estrangement, physical limitations like being short). I think of the corporate ladder, and I don't know what I would do if given the opportunity to be at the top. So...I'm definitely not judging her.

Thu Jun 07, 03:20:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Oh, i forgot to finish my point. I actually thought that retiring against Mauresmo in the AO final was worse because by that point she was very much a great the time, i felt like once you make it, you should comport yourself as such...but not everyone is always privileged to fall into the top I'm more forgiving for those on the way up. not everyone knows better.

(But let's be honest..."the wave" didn't cost Serena that match...)

Thu Jun 07, 03:34:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

I'm with you, Eric. The Australian Open championship antic was one I'll never get past. I do miss Henin's game--but, you know, not the rest.

Thu Jun 07, 04:17:00 PM EDT  

Post a Comment

<< Home