Archive for the ‘Male Players’ Category
When you’re into the second week of a Grand Slam, certain patterns start to emerge that you may have noticed in previous years, or may be quite new…
1. Novak Djokovic will always go further than most people believe. He may be number one in the world right now but people still have an enormous question mark over his ability to play on clay. Not only is it not really the surface a Serb growing up on hard courts can excel on, he has also struggled in recent years with a series of illness – such as allergies, hayfevers etc – that have rendered him a teary-eyed and sneezing wreck. Even this year, after beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in a nail-biting match under Paris drizzle, there’ll still be a lot of umm-ing and ahh-ing over whether he’ll show the same impressive form as the other tournaments. Personally, I think he’s on to a winner this year, but he has to have his big break on a the clay Grand Slam.
2. Andy Murray will lose. No, this is not his year. Yes, I’m sure it’s because of his back. No, I don’t think he’ll ever win at Rolland Garros. Not with all those Spaniards and French out there, who grew up on clay. Yes, I believe that he will eventually be muscled out of the top 5 if he keeps going the way he is, and soon.
3. There’ll always be a shocker in the women’s. Actually, you could say that about pretty much every tournament nowadays. This year, there have been quite a few. Serena Williams didn’t even get started befo more »
With the clay court season set to dominate both the ATP and WTA for the next two months it seems timely to start contemplating the many questions that the slippery red dirt surface may help us answer in the months of April and May. With all four Davis Cup quarterfinals currently being played on clay the surface will completely dominate mens tennis for the next two months, women’s tennis will also be inundated with the red dirt surface in April and May although this weeks opening clay court tournament on the WTA calendar in Charleston prefers the more envious colour of green for their clay courts.
The only tournament that will be played on anything but a clay court surface for the next two months will be the WTA tournament in Copenhagen, Denmark, the home of former women’s World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, the WTA e-Boks Open in Denmark will be the only respite and hiatus that players will get from applying their trade on clay courts for the next two months.
All other tennis will be played on the red dirt with one notable exception being the ATP Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid, the Mutua Madrid Open will be played in early May and will revolutionise the red surface and become the first clay court tournament to adopt the colour blue, it is well known amongst tennis fans that blue courts provide better viewing for fans inside the stadium and also those at home watching on television.
The steady diet of clay court tennis will have all dirt baller fans salivating at the more »
We are only a little over one month into the 2012 tennis season and already Novak Djokovic has confirmed himself as the dominant player and undisputed No.1 in our sport. Affectionately known to most tennis fans as Nole, the 24 year old Serbian native has continued to display his undoubted tennis talent on the biggest stage and numerous people are now questioning whether he is capable of completing a calendar Grand Slam and/or a Golden Slam in 2012.
If Nole was to win the title at Roland Garros in France this year and complete his career Grand Slam then he will be the current holder of all four Grand Slam titles at one time, a feat not even achieved by his two closest rivals and fellow multiple Grand Slam winners Federer and Nadal. A win in the final on the famous Philippe Chatrier centre court on June 10 2012 will see the name of Novak Djokovic suddenly being talked about among the greats of the game.
His dominance in this golden era of men’s tennis makes his achievement all the more remarkable, it didn’t seem all that long ago that people were talking about him being born in the wrong era, especially when the Roger and Rafa rivalry looked like it would continue to dominate the game for many more years to come.
Like most things in life, sport and tennis at the top level also has it cycles and it’s ebbs and flows, Roger defeated Pistol Pete in his own backyard on the grass at Wimbledon in 2001, a win which no doubt would have increased Federer’s self belief no end, as more »
You couldn’t have had two different finals. On the one hand there was the straight sets demolition of a former champion by a 22 year Belarusian who 11 months ago was about to throw in the towel. On the other hand, there was a just-under six hour epic battle in which the winner was hardly definite even on championship point.
Not to say that one was definitely better than the other. They are two different tournaments, four different players, and two very different stories. Djokovic was the man to beat; Azarenka was the challenger to Maria’s crown. You can’t really compare the two.
The first, then. Victoria Azarenka had come so close to completely giving up tennis, and she went onto the court on Saturday as the second favourite to Maria Sharapova’s more experienced game. What happened afterwards was a surprise for everyone on the court, including Sharapova.
It wasn’t just that Maria lost and Victoria won. Victoria destroyed her opponent, blasting through any sort of game plan Sharapova might had had – and if she did have one, it was hardly one worthy of a final – to win the final on a 6-3 6-0 scoreline. She might have had the experience, but Sharapova didn’t have the game and when it all fell to pieces, Azarekna just had to keep her head and drive through to the final point.
Even though it must have seen cut and dry from the end of the first set, Azarenka still couldn’t believe her win when it happened. The look of disbelief she gave to her team in the player’s box more »
Another Grand Slam, another bitter disappointment for Murray as he gets so close, yet leaves still so far from gaining an Open title. Pat Cash rightly said that Murray was going to have to play the tennis of his life to get past the world number 1 on the form he is currently in. And Murray played a near-perfect match. But despite general opinion, I wouldn’t really class that as Murray’s best game ever. Going down in the third set 6-1 was definitely uncharacteristic. Murray may lose games, but he fights for every point with all the power he has. Although that was certainly true of many games in this match, it was hardly a consistent performance.
Not that you can blame the guy. At the other end of the court prowls a man who last year won 3 of the 4 grand slam titles, and won 43 matches in a row. Never mind that Djokovic seems to have lost his fear, that mental block that used to make him choke at the moment of success. With his ability to shrug off the pressure, it was a wonder the game got to four sets.
Murray had his chances to take the game by the scruff of the neck. By evening the scoreline out, there was a level playing field going into the deciding set. However, there needn’t be. Murray seemed so fixed on the furthest points – the fifth set – that he seemed to forget about some of the ones before that. The fourth set only took twenty five minutes. 6-1 isn’t just bad for the overall scoreline, it’s a serious confidence boost to an opponent. The last thing you want to more »