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more recent topics... Forum Index » All Tennis: Mixed » MARIA'S Cocktail To Defeat Serena
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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 7:11 pm       MARIA'S Cocktail To Defeat Serena

Joined27 Jul 2013

In 0:59 win over Pliskova, Sharapova shows underrated strategic smarts

PARIS—It had been three years since Maria Sharapova
had played in Court Philippe Chatrier. Which meant it had been three
years since that 90-year-old stadium’s old concrete rafters had been
rattled by the Russian’s screams of competitive desire. To hear them
again at the start of her third-round match with Karolina Pliskova was
a little startling. If anything, Sharapova’s shrieks rang out louder
and longer than ever. The 31-year-old sounded like she wanted to win
this match more than all of the hundreds that have come before in her
15-year career.

“I would love to be there again,” Sharapova had said on Thursday as
she contemplated a return to Chatrier, where she has won perhaps the two
most satisfying major titles of her career, in 2012 and 2014. “If I do
have a chance to play on it, I’ll welcome it with open arms.”

It had also been a while since Sharapova faced Pliskova.
Three years, to be exact, and in those three years Pliskova had
transformed herself from just another long, lean, gunslinging
up-and-comer into a regular Grand Slam contender and, for a few weeks at
least, the No. 1 player in the world. But Sharapova was ready for her,

“Obviously creating looks on second balls after the return and after
the serve,” she said of what her tactics would be against Pliskova.
“Getting in position, there [will be] a lot of hard hitting. I don’t
expect extremely long rallies against an opponent like that...I have to
serve better than I have and take care of the return.”

Mission very much accomplished. Rarely has a game plan been executed with such precision.

Take care of her serve? Check. Sharapova made 73 percent of her first serves, and won 73 percent of those points.

Take care of her return? Check. Sharapova won 55 percent of the
points on Pliskova’s first serve, which is one of the game’s best, and
hit 18 winners to just five from the Czech.

In her 6-2, 6-1 win, which lasted all of 59 minutes, Sharapova
focused on taking the initiative and gaining the advantage as soon as
she could in every rally, and Pliskova had no answer for it. Sharapova’s
ground strokes had the pace needed to make them shoot through the clay,
but they also had topspin for shape and margin—it wasn’t power as much
as placement that earned her all those winners today.

As tempting as it may be to think so after listening to this match,
Sharapova’s win had less to do with her well-documented love of
competition than it did with her underrated strategic intelligence.

“The return, as I said in my previous press conference, it was a big
part of getting in the point,” Sharapova said, “and not giving her too
many free points and giving her confidence from the baseline.”

“I was solid. I played smart. I think I did the right things, I was
aggressive on the break points, I went for it. I took the match rather
than her giving it to me.”

Sharapova’s shrieks were indeed rafter-rattling today, and they only
seemed louder when they alternated with Pliskova’s complete silence on
the other end of the court. Sharapova may or may not have “wanted it
more,” but she certainly made her desire utterly clear. Even up two
breaks in the second set and running away with it, she was still
celebrating her winners with double fist-pumps and full-throated “Come

Sharapova’s reasoning for her motivation is hard to argue with.

“You don’t put those hours on the back courts in
Bradenton-fricking-Florida—you know what I mean—to show up at events and
not bring it,” she said.

Words for every tennis player to live by. Who knows, they could be carved on Maria’s Hall of Fame plaque someday.

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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 9:47 pm       

Joined27 Jul 2013

Serena Williams slams Maria Sharapova over book ‘hearsay’ as showdown looms

The cold war is over. Serena Williams, husbanding as much diplomatic warmth as she deemed appropriate, inferred strongly before her blockbuster match here on Monday against Maria Sharapova that her Russian rival had been indulging in fake news.

Williams on Saturday beat Julia Görges 6-3, 6-4 to go through to the fourth round, not long after Sharapova had blitzed the sixth seed, Karolina Pliskova, 6-2, 6-1 in under an hour. Later, after batting away a couple of innocuous questions about her daughter, Olympia, Williams was confronted with a 14-year-old remark by Donald Trump that “Maria’s shoulders were incredibly alluring and ... you were intimidated by her supermodel good looks”. Pausing, she replied: “I can’t say I have been intimidated by anyone.”

That became blindingly apparent as she opened up both barrels, ever so quietly. “We are both on a comeback for two totally different reasons. She’s been on her journey for over a year and I just started mine a couple months ago. It’s something new and different. I don’t know what else to say.”

Yes, she did. Asked about passages in Sharapova’s recent book in which she intimated the reason Williams has dominated the Russian in 19 of their 21 matches over 14 years was because Williams was so distraught at losing to her in the 2004 Wimbledon final she cried in the locker room, Williams looked surprised.

“The book was 100% hearsay – at least all the stuff I read and the quotes that I read, which was a little bit disappointing. I have cried in the locker room many times after a loss. I think it’s normal. If anything, it shows the passion and the desire and the will that you have to want to go out there and do the best. It’s a Wimbledon final, you know?

“It would be more shocking if I wasn’t in tears. I do have emotions and I wear them on my sleeve. I’m human. What happens there should definitely maybe stay there and not necessarily talk about it in a not‑so‑positive way in a book.”

On Monday’s fourth-round match – the most anticipated of the tournament – she said: “Quite frankly, she’s probably a favourite. She’s been playing for over a year now. I just started. I’m just trying to get my bearings. This will be another test. This is one of her best surfaces, and she always does really, really well here.” Except when playing Williams, to whom she lost in the 2013 final.

She continued: “I don’t have any negative feelings towards her. It was a little disappointing to see in that hearsay book. Especially having a daughter, I feel negativity is taught. Women, especially, should bring each other up.

“A lot of people always assume that I feel a different way and it’s not true. You know, if anything, I feel like we should encourage each other and the success of one female should be the inspiration to another. I have said that a thousand times. I always get inspired by other women that are doing well.

Maria Sharapova produced a stunning demolition of the world No 6 Karolina Pliskova in 59 minutes, 6-2, 6-1. Photograph: Ian Langsdon/EPA

“Before her incident of drugs or not, I just feel she was doing good. Now she’s doing well again, and I have never had any hard feelings toward her. Whenever I play her, obviously I go out there the way I play everyone else. I go extremely hard. I don’t play anyone different. I play everyone so hard because they play me really hard, and I always have to be ready for it.

“As a fan, I was really excited for it to come out and I was really happy for her. And then the book was a lot about me. I was surprised about that, to be honest. I didn’t expect to be reading a book about me that wasn’t necessarily true. I didn’t know she looked up to me that much or was so involved in my career.

“When her whole drug incident [occurred], I was, like, she was brave to say something. I didn’t have anything negative to say about Maria.”

Without abusing the metaphor, Williams had the ultimate cornerman on court in Mike Tyson, who was there cheering for her on Saturday evening. “Seeing him there is always pretty cool. He was obviously such a great champion.”

Whatever the verbal heat generated, Williams is probably right in her assessment of her next match. It would be one of her best career triumphs to overcome Sharapova again, at 36 and in the early stages of her comeback. For Sharapova, losing would be another devastating blow – and might underpin her extraordinary will to win against all odds.

Last edited by Grossefavourite on Jun Sat 02, 2018 9:49 pm;
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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 10:14 pm       Re:MARIA'S Cocktail To Defeat Serena

Joined28 Aug 2012

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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 10:32 pm       
Site Admin

Joined14 Sep 2004

The media looking for dirt.
They are treating this like a boxing match.
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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 11:09 pm       

Joined24 Dec 2009
LocationLos Angeles, USA

🤣🤣🤣🤣 grossie showing sign of PTSD😂😂

"Hail Maria The Empress!!" serena williams
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Posted: Jun Sat 02, 2018 11:12 pm       

Joined24 Dec 2009
LocationLos Angeles, USA

Relax grossie it’s only a tennis domination exactly like the 2004 wimbys final.

"Hail Maria The Empress!!" serena williams
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Posted: Jun Sun 03, 2018 7:39 am       

Joined27 Jul 2013

I fear it will be Maria's day to gain revenge and for the establishment to rehabilitate her which they're desperate to do, given her alleged alluring shoulders and intimidating supermodel looks, at least according to Trump.

Last edited by Grossefavourite on Jun Sun 03, 2018 7:40 am;
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Posted: Jun Sun 03, 2018 12:20 pm       Re:MARIA'S Cocktail To Defeat Serena
Site Admin

Joined14 Sep 2004

Serena's interview

Last edited by Ace2Ace on Jun Sun 03, 2018 12:21 pm;
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