Thursday, January 6, 2011
Maria Sharapova crashes in Auckland. My reasons why Maria will never have Slam glory again AND My tips to lift the four crowns in 2011.
Firstly Divapova (Masha) has bowed out of Auckland in straight sets to Hungarian veteran Greta Arn. Sharapova was a clear favorite for the title when she announced her participation in the event. Clearly Greta Arn didn't know that! In the first set, Sharapova was ace-less and managed three double fault, and didnt even see a break point on the Arn serve. Not to mention the fact she was able to only win one, yes ONE!, point on her second serve. The second set was slightly better for Sharapova in the serving department, she fired down an ace! Arn won an impressive 72% of points on second serve, surprisingly higher than on her first serve! Sharapova managed 24% of points on second serve, A Serena Williams effort compared to the first set. Masha manged to break twice, Arn broke thrice and thus took down the top seed 6-2 7-5. Oh yeah, also, Wickmayer looks poised to defend her title successfully.
And now Ladies and Gentlemen my second "mini blog" in the post. Simply Maria Sharapova can never win a Grand Slam title AGAIN! I know, it may not be news to some, but I felt like writing why I thought this. There are two major facts that implicate the statement, 1. Will she ever be able to recover 100% from injury? 2. Will she ever have a good run at a slam with out "breaking down" or running into a top seed in the 4th round? Now for some fun facts! Sharapova has not made into the Semi's of a slam since 2008, only making a Quarter Final once! (2009 RG). In 2010 her Year End Ranking has declined from 14 to 18, and she even fell out of the top 20 in late 2010! Six or Divapova's eleven loses in 2010 were "upsets" to lower ranked players, such us Kimiko Date Krumm in the first round of Tokyo. Divapova has not taken down one of the "Big Four" (Serena, Kim, Venus and Justine) Since the Australian Open in 2008 (d. Henin 6-0 6-4) Maria no longer has the weapons in her game to challenge at slams. And as Carlos has said previously, She runs good for a while, the breaks down! Like an old car! Also, haunted by the shoulder injury, Sharapova will never be able to have a big enough impact at a slam, because of her seeding! And her ranking won't be able to rise much because she wont be able to make a huge impact to get points. Ranked when she currently (hovering around 14-24) Maria will be meeting the top seeds in the 3rd, 4th rounds and quarter finals. Maria's mental strength has also been battered and bruised by the crushing loses. Maria no longer has the physical or mental strength to win slams, you can expect to see her in a few QF's or 4th round matches, but don't put money on her lifting a trophy.
Now finally, my tips for the first slams, And I will probably go into each choice as the Slam approaches, but this will be brief.
Winner - Kim Clijsters
Dark Horse(s) - Vera Zvonareva, Justine Henin, Li Na
Capable - Venus Williams
Ones to watch out for - Shahar Pe'er, Agi Radwanska
Likely to make a good run - Andrea Petkovic, Jarmila Groth, Stosur
Winner - Jelena Jankovic
Dark Horse(s) - Ana Ivanovic, Svetlana, anyone who grew up on the red dirt
Capable - Justine Henin, Serena Williams (if shes back), Vera Zvonareva, Franny and Sam
Ones to watch out for - Kanepi, Clijsters, again anyone who grew up on the red dirt
Likely to make a good run - Dulgheru
Winner - Serena Williams
Dark Horse(s) - Vera, Li Na
Capable - Venus, Kim, Justine
Ones to watch out for - Jarmila Groth, The 2010 surprise semis (Kanepi & Kvitova), Azarenka
Likely to make a good run - Masha, Petko, Safarova, Agi Radwanska
Winner - Serena Williams
Dark Horse(s) - Yanina Wickmayer, Shahar Pe'er, Flavia
Capable - Justine, Kim, Vera, Azarenka
Ones to watch out for - Svetlana, Zheng Jie, JJ
Likely to make a good run - Makiri, Sponge Bart, and for the fun of it, Kimiko
What are your thoughts on these three topics?