Was Serena's loss really necessary?

Discussion in 'Pro Match Results and Discussion' started by Tafmatch, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. Tafmatch

    Tafmatch Rookie

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    Serena couldn't play as well as she normally can but while I was watching I still had the idea that she could win this one.

    For some reason it looked a bit like she wanted to lose this match, and the last couple of points she seemed to stop moving altogether and looked like she didn't really care anymore.

    Do you think she lost this match because of mental issues?
     
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  2. AYone

    AYone Rookie

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    You know, I hate to question injuries and heart, but that injury seemed suspect and attention-driven to me. I mean, how does your back hurt for two games? I've hurt my back several times in my life and never could engage in athletics at full strength right after. Even the commentators said Serena looked back to 100% for the 3rd set and was blasting her hardest serves.
     
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  3. PCXL-Fan

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    Maybe Sloane payed off Serena?
     
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  4. Mainad

    Mainad G.O.A.T.

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  5. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

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    Mentally Serena is about as tough as anyone I have ever seen. My top 2 would be Nadal and Serena in terms of mental toughness, and I have been watching tennis since Borg's early days.

    The ankle swelling is what did her in mentally though. She likely knew she would never get past Azarenka on one days rest and a bad ankle.
     
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  6. Tafmatch

    Tafmatch Rookie

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    Exactly my thoughts. But I still wonder if a Nadal or Federer would've lost this match. Maybe the pain was just too bad but it seemed she didn't really want to fight it anymore. For someone considered a Mental Mountain that surprised me a bit.
     
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  7. malbaker86

    malbaker86 Professional

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    I disagree. I fully believe that had she not injuried herself, she would have won it in straight sets but she didn't and that's that.

    I want a Stephens-Li finale
     
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  8. Medved

    Medved Rookie

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    If Serena is so mentally strong, why can't she seem to control her temper? I think she competes hard, but mentally I'd call he average at best. Physically she's head and shoulders above the competition.
     
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  9. TennisFan436

    TennisFan436 Rookie

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    Look, her serve is what keeps her winning. She is also strong on groundstrokes but because she cannot move as well (she is no young sprung chicken) she relies on the serve to hold and her powerful groundstrokes to break.

    But Sloane gave Serena as much pace as she received. She absorbed Serena's power better than I've ever seen Azarenka or Sharapove do. Moreover, Serena's service game was way off. She just could not get her first serves in, let alone ace her way through.

    That may have entirely been due to her ankle and back spasm, but what I do know is that Sloane could have lost the match despite the serve being off. Serena had the match on her racket but Sloane broke back, and so unraveled Serena's nerve and pressure on having to hold to keep in the match.

    Oh, well. All is not lost here but this should be a wake up call to Serena to stick to singles like Aza and Maria. The doubles play is wearing her thin.
     
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  10. Soianka

    Soianka Hall of Fame

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    Yes, it was so suspect. I mean clearly she wasn't really injured as she was serving her usual 70 and 80 MPH rockets :rolleyes:

    Serena has only retired ONCE in a grand slam match in her long career, and she has displayed more heart and courage than any other WTA player in recent memory
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013
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  11. Tcbtennis

    Tcbtennis Professional

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    I think that at the age of 31 it is difficult for her to recover physically while playing everyday (singles and doubles). The day before the match Venus and Serena lost in a third set against Errani and Vinci. It was a long match and Serena looked pooped then and didn't appear to move well because of her ankle. And then she went out the next day against Sloane who turned out to be a tough competitor after a poor showing in the first set. Since she had back spasms that seemed to respond to treatment I don't think it was a mental breakdown. I think it was a physical breakdown. At her age playing everyday (Sharapova and Azarenka aren't playing doubles) and then running against an opponent who wouldn't back down is what did her in.
     
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  12. Soianka

    Soianka Hall of Fame

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    ITA. Serena should not have played doubles after she injured her ankle in the 1st round.

    I suppose her logic is: 1. Wanting to solidify herself in history with the doubles GS titles and help Venus.

    2. The doubles is also good practice.

    But now that she is an older player, probably best not to push it on an injured ankle.
     
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  13. Soianka

    Soianka Hall of Fame

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    That would be nice to see, but I have a feeling it's going to be Azarenka-Sharapova.
     
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  14. Vrad

    Vrad Semi-Pro

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    I think the more probable reason is that she simply isn't a quitter. And she definitely could have won the match against Sloane.
     
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  15. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    I love Sloane Stephens and think she has a fabulous tennis future, but...

    if Serena wasn't injured Sloane would have been toast. The teen would have put of an admirable and noteworthy fight, but she would have been out in straight sets.

    are we really doubting this?
     
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  16. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Hall of Fame

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    Don't really like Serena as a player but my gosh, she's tough. I've had days where my back seizes up and I can't even sit without pain, let alone play.

    Props to her for not retiring. Janko Tipsy can learn a thing or two from her for that.
     
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  17. tacou

    tacou Legend

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    Serena is far from mentally weak, but she sure seemed rattled in this match, even before the injury. In fact their match up in Hobary or wherever was fairly tense too.

    I don't doubt her back tightened up but when the 3rd set began Serena was playing her normal game. Maybe not at 100% but Sloan was scrambling, playing great D and being aggressive.

    I think Serena could have and "should have" won this match but Sloan took it, injury or not.

    And seriously, Williams saying these were the worst 2 weeks or whatever...until this match she had barely dropped 2 games in a set.
     
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  18. Fifth Set

    Fifth Set Professional

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    I think the question is really how injured Serena really was. She was serving 115+ in the 3rd set. She was running just fine despite her claims that her ankle was THIS big. Commentators noted how Serena allows physical issues to get deep into her head.

    It's a convenient excuse. Serena is always "injured" so it's just a question of how hard she fights through it. What a hero! Not.
     
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  19. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    Do you even watch tennis? We saw her roll her ankle a few days ago. Have you ever rolled an ankle? It hampers your mobility on the court, reduced the amount of push off you can use for your strokes and messes up your balance. Never mind the back issue Serena MTO'd for. The woman was obviously hurt.

    Also, why would she have nerves? She was up a set against a teenager.

    If anything, it's Sloane who couldn't close it out due to nerves (or was it ability?) when she had the chance and allowed the third set to go on for so long.

    Save this post please. The next time Sloane plays Serena, Williams will trounce the little one in straight sets.
     
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  20. AYone

    AYone Rookie

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    Serena also is the biggest I've ever seen. Do people agree? I mean her upper arms and back muscles just glistened in the sun like a He-Man figure. But Sloane also looks pretty built already, and probably will only get stronger through her 20's with more professional training.
     
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  21. Fifth Set

    Fifth Set Professional

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    You basically changed the subject here. Yes, I have been injured before. Most days I play through, sometimes I can't. Who cares. Yes, Serena is probably still a better overall player than Sloane and will likely win the majority of their encounters.

    That doesn't change the fact that Serena is the current #1 drama queen. That was in full effect last night, with Serena acting like she was about to die one moment and then hitting a 118 mph serve the next. So sometimes Serena is her own worst enemy with some of these "physical" issues.
     
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  22. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    Hitting the odd powerful serve isn't the issue. she had to fight through pain to do that and still almost won the match. if anything it shows how strong mentally she is.

    What recent examples of stoicism from other players would you have preferred Serena took as a model in these situations?

    From this tournament, the only few i can think of are: Nishikori fighting it out against Ferrer despite a nagging knee injury, and Almagro's groin incident, but that isn't a good example as he choked so many times earlier in the match.
     
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