Archive for the ‘Australian Open’ Category

 

Serena’s Ankle The Main Discussion Point After Day Two

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

Although we have already seen several seeded players beaten in both the men’s and women’s singles draw at the 2013 Australian Open, the main discussion point after two days of competition is surely the state and condition of Serena Williams right ankle, the five time Australian Open champion was the warm favourite in the women’s singles heading into the first major event of the year but her ankle injury will now have the other main contenders in the women’s draw keeping one eye on her progress with plenty of interest, even after she rolled her ankle and had it strapped Williams was still far too good for Edina Gallovits-Hall in round one with the hapless Romanian being double bageled 6-0, 6-0.

The main question now is whether or not Serena’s ankle will allow her to be fit enough to go all the way and claim a record 6th Australian Open championship, the third seeded American rolled her right ankle at 4-0 up in the first set against Gallovits-Hall, but after a delay, assessment and some strapping she raced through the match without dropping a single game, it will be interesting to see how the 31 year old performs in her second round match on day four against relative unknown Garbine Muguruza, even with an injured ankle Williams would be expected to comfortably account for the 112th ranked Spaniard.

What will be of greater interest to tennis fans and media alike is how Serena fares once she faces a more experienced and potentially tougher opponent deeper in the more »

 

Novak & Serena Will Start As Favourites At Melbourne Park

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

With the 2013 Australian Open now only a few days away the debate and discussion will soon intensify on who is likely to be crowned the respective men’s and women’s singles champion at Melbourne Park in late January, Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams will start the first Grand Slam of the new season as the respective men’s and women’s favourite and justifiably so as both players were the dominant force on their respective tours in 2012, the heatwave in Australia has continued this week and I’m sure the tennis action, starting next Monday at Melbourne Park on 14 January 2013, will also be sizzling.

Djokovic will enter the tournament as the defending men’s singles champion and with Rafael Nadal not making the trip to Melbourne this year the Serb’s chance of grabbing a third consecutive AO title and his fourth overall looks a distinct possibility, the biggest challenge for the world No.1 on Rod Laver Arena throughout the fortnight is likely to come from his two closest ranked rivals, Roger Federer and Andy Murray, Federer last won the title back in 2010 while Murray, a two-time finalist, pushed Nole all the way before succumbing in a thrilling five set semifinal last year, throw in the likes of former US Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro, the consistent Spaniard David Ferrer, the talented Czech Tomas Berdych and the popular Frenchman Jo-Wilfred Tsonga and we have a recipe for a brillant fortnight of men’s Grand Slam action.

Serena will be looking to complete her third more »

 

Equality And Prizemoney In Tennis

Sunday, February 5th, 2012

Immediately after the euphoria of the longest Grand Slam singles final in tennis history in Melbourne, Australia, the debate and discussion surrounding equality and prizemoney in tennis was once again being talked about. “Equal pay for equal play” I heard many people saying, another comment I heard was that “men and women are wired genetically different though so it’s fair”, it’s quite concievable that many people could easily sit in both camps on this issue.
There are many questions to ponder regarding this subject though, some of which include the following….
Should the women be paid equal prizemoney for doing “arguably” less work over the two week period of a Grand Slam?
Should the women be forced to play the best of five sets in Grand Slam tournaments?
Should the men revert to playing the best of three sets in Grand Slams?
I’d like to take a look at these questions and give my views on each one.

On the first question, “Should the women be paid equal prizemoney for doing “arguably” less work over the two week period of a Grand Slam?
If you look purely at the facts based on output you would initially have to think that, no, they shouldn’t be paid prizemoney equal to that of the men, however the women would argue that they train just as hard as the men for the Grand Slams and it’s not their fault that some matches are over in less than one hour.
The women’s final was over after 1 hour 22 minutes in Melbourne compared to the epic 5 hour 53 minute marathon of the more »

 

Two Different Champions, Two Different Stories

Monday, January 30th, 2012

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 »

 

Murray’s chance slips through his grasp yet again

Friday, January 27th, 2012

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 »