Post Wimbledon scenario: 10 things to ponder
After a scintillating fortnight of tennis, we had 2 new champions – Petra Kvitova and Novak Djokovic. Both of these players were expected to win by the experts. Now, let’s get into an analysis and look for 10 solid pointers from the past fortnight’s result and make some sense out of them. Here we go… 10 to 1.
10. Women’s tennis continues to throw up new names
While the fact that Kvitova won after almost all the acclaimed favorites (Li Na, the Williams sisters and err… Wozniacki) lost well before the business end, justified the lack of consistent players in the women’s field, some might also see it as a vindication of the depth in the field. Just look at the names that made the last 8 – Sabine Lisicki, Victoria Azarenka, Cibulkova in addition to Kvitova. They were not a part of the last 8 at Paris and am pretty sure that these names will be out in the first week at the US Open too. Sharapova was also there in the last 8 list but other than her the others are not exactly household names. So a mixture of depth and lack of consistency. Hope Kvitova turns out be a consistent force among the fairer sex
9. The women can serve too
Sabine Lisicki set a new record for the fastest serve by a woman at 124 mph. This is some serious speed that we are talking about. This is faster than what the Williams sisters could manage. And this is what the likes of Roger, Rafa and Nole serve on an average. So, the woman can serve too if they have the necessary beef, the swing, the toss and the technique.
8. The WTA tour has to have a re-look at their rankings system
Another Grand Slam has passed and Caroline Wozniacki has bowed out easily yet again well before the business end. But, she will still be the no.1. She has been the no.1 for ages, it seems. When your no.1 ranked player in the world is plain and simple, incapable of winning a Slam, then she has no business being at the top of the rankings. People, pls take a look at your rankings system and crown someone deserving, as the no.1 woman.
7. The Indian angle
Sania had yet another first round disaster and she made some fair progress in the doubles section. Mahesh also made the mixed doubles finals. Bopanna and Qureshi lost early in what was an unexpected result. So, the Indians have continued to be good at doubles and Sania and Dev Varman continue to embarrass themselves in the singles. Indian singles tennis is going nowhere
6. The Williams sisters
They came in, short of match practice and literally struggled through the first week save the odd easy set or 2. Venus in particular appeared really heavy with her thunder thighs and garish costumes. She needs to bow out I guess. 31 yrs old and with so many young girls kicking up a storm, guess it’s time to hang up the boots in a sober way rather than wear atrocious costumes and struggle for consistency. Serena still has the drive and her early loss is a surprise. She has the muscle, the power and with some more match practice she should be fine.
5. Maria’s serve needs some urgent attention
Maria Sharapova made the finals in what was a great result for her following the last 4 appearance in Paris. That, she managed this with some dubious serving and record number of double faults, makes her performance look even more surprising. Had she served well in the finals. she could have surely won the title. Her serves need some urgent work. May be the ball toss or may be the action, something is wrong.
4.A mature and calm head has arrived
Petra Kvitova is a throwback to the days of Lindsay Davenport. The huge body, the solid game, the minimum fuss, the matured conduct and the pleasing demeanor are all the same. She is a nice new winner to have and at 21 yrs she is a good role model too for aspiring young girls who want a calm and composed champion to look up to.
3. Two top men are bound to struggle
Roger Federer had another quarterfinal defeat here at his favorite turf. He is losing to newer players who wouldn’t have dreamt of his scalp few years back. He will now be seeded to play Rafa in the last 4 itself, at least in the upcoming 2 Slams. His skills are waning a bit with age, other players no longer have that awe factor about him, the motivation is dipping and it won’t be soon before he finds the going really tough.
Andy Murray is another perennial semifinal loser. If he had been losing to Rafa all along in the SFs till now, from now he will be encountering the new numero-uno Nole in the SFs as per the seeding, and the result of this match-up is almost a foregone conclusion.But, Murray will be expected to do great in the Masters leading up to the US Open so, he can’t be ruled out entirely. He has been a real star in the US Open series in previous years, at Montreal and Cincinnati. So, all is not lost for the Scot.
2.Rafa has found a real tough match
Finally after years of total domination in Grand Slam finals, Rafael Nadal was bested after a gap of 4 yrs. He has lost to Nole in all 5 finals this year. He has lost on clay, on grass, on hard courts, across 3 sets and across 5 sets. Nole has really got Rafa’s number this year. Nole will most probably be to Rafa what Rafa was to Roger. When Roger lost to Rafa at the 08 Wimbledon finals he was 26 and now Rafa is 25 when he has found his tormentor in Nole. A sure case of history repeating itself.
But, I trust the great Spaniard to come back.
1. The new numero-uno
We’ve got a new world no.1 and he has truly deserved it. He has had the hottest season anyone can have, he has won 2 out of the 3 Slams, has lost just 1 match this year, has accomplished the Wimbledon – no.1 double this week and things are only looking better for him what with the US hard court season coming up. He is a regular winner on the hard courts and trust him to win the US Open as well as the Montreal and Cincinnati masters. His prize money is going to touch the sky by the end of the season.
If his on court exploits are such, off the court he is a total extrovert, he eats grass, he throws his rackets away to the fans, he celebrates and lives life like a king, he is a total family man, he gives funny interviews, he mimics other tennis stars, he has a water named after him in Serbia, he is his nation’s pride, travels on a diplomatic passport and his country can also be renamed as ‘Serve’ia following all his tennis exploits this year.
Let’s welcome Novak Djokovic aka Djoker aka Nole, the new poster boy of tennis and a force like none other.