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Australian Open 2012: The Other Players

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Emma Jean
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #960 on: February 01, 2012, 04:07 PM »
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^^^ I didn't say full schedule if you are referring to me.
The fact is he started sooner, full schedule or not, and has more pro matches under his belt, including with the other top 3.
And let's face it. Novak has matured a bit more quickly than Andy.
But he's had more experience also so  Shrug
Also the earlier experience he had has meant he's always been ahead, and then Andy has kind of caught up and Moved ahead now Novak has moved ahead again, big time.
The question is, will Andy move ahead again  Whistle

No, I wasn't referring to you. I wouldn't say Novak has matured quicker than Andy but rather that, Andy's taking a bit time maturing. He's already played 6 full years on the tour but his slowness can be contributed to a few things given that, he has a few good guys ahead of him and the ongoing pressure he has. Could be a few personal things as well. If all things go accordingly, then it's definitely Andy who’s in line next. If he adopts a bit more attacking game and plans his schedule wisely then I really think he’ll dominate for a while and won’t burn out. 


But then would you also have to factor in that Andy didn't play a full year in 2007,[which included missing 2 Grand Slams and that valuable experience] when he injured his wrist?

Nadal also didn't play Wimbledon in 2009 but I think ATP counts that as a full year anyway. Sampras couldn't play AO twice but they still count those two years as two full years on ATP schedule.

Oh you poor persecuted little lamb! tender

You are very sweet. I don't tell you that enough.


Mod NoticeMerged posts. Please try and avoid double and triple posting. Instead use the edit button when quoting an additional post.
[ Last edit by Mark February 01, 2012, 05:27 PM ] IP Logged
theycanbillme
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #961 on: February 01, 2012, 05:20 PM »
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No, I wasn't referring to you. I wouldn't say Novak has matured quicker than Andy but rather that, Andy's taking a bit time maturing. He's already played 6 full years on the tour but his slowness can be contributed to a few things given that, he has a few good guys ahead of him and the ongoing pressure he has. Could be a few personal things as well. If all things go accordingly, then it's definitely Andy who’s in line next. If he adopts a bit more attacking game and plans his schedule wisely then I really think he’ll dominate for a while and won’t burn out. 

You wouldn't say that Novak has matured quicker, just that Andy has taken a bit more time?  Rolling Eyes
Bit of a political answer that one Emma, don't you think?
But yes Andy is the heir apparent and I like that he has taken your advice in being aggressive, by being much more it seems.
About time as well.
His dominance might happen sooner than we believe also, as the cracks are already showing in Novak even though he won in OZ.
Cracks induced by Andy, not Nadal whom he must also crack if he is to dominate and that shall require a lot of aggression. But I do not hope for a unending reign of Murray, I'd like him to have a number of periods.
It's more interesting that way. And Novak is still young too. Federer's dominance seemed unending but you have to hand it to Novak, he has made a strong era look almost weak for a time. Something Roger hasn't and probably couldn't have done.
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blueberryhill
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #962 on: February 01, 2012, 06:31 PM »
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I always understood that Rafa was "old" in tennis terms and Andy a year younger than Novak confused
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Littlebuddha
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #963 on: February 01, 2012, 09:04 PM »
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Yes BBH Rafa seems to have been around for ever we have seen a lot of his games were he was  young in relative terms to Novak and Andy. Perhaps it is because he matured a lot quicker than them.
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scotnadian
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #964 on: February 01, 2012, 09:13 PM »
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I love Rafa.. he reminds me of Benjamin Button.. so long as he doesn't get younger.. Whistle


* benjamin button.jpg (6.43 KB, 261x193 - viewed 136 times.)
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Emma Jean
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #965 on: February 02, 2012, 12:35 AM »
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You wouldn't say that Novak has matured quicker, just that Andy has taken a bit more time?  Rolling Eyes
Bit of a political answer that one Emma, don't you think?
But yes Andy is the heir apparent and I like that he has taken your advice in being aggressive, by being much more it seems.
About time as well.
His dominance might happen sooner than we believe also, as the cracks are already showing in Novak even though he won in OZ.
Cracks induced by Andy, not Nadal whom he must also crack if he is to dominate and that shall require a lot of aggression. But I do not hope for a unending reign of Murray, I'd like him to have a number of periods.
It's more interesting that way. And Novak is still young too. Federer's dominance seemed unending but you have to hand it to Novak, he has made a strong era look almost weak for a time. Something Roger hasn't and probably couldn't have done.

Bill, I wouldn't say Novak has matured quicker because until 2011 he had won only 1 slam and that goes way back. It's only last year he has started to come together when he's already 24. Andy sort of matured quite a bit at the same as well though he has yet to win a slam, he has made all the semi-finals in the same year as Novak, so that's not something to sneeze at. I'd say Rafa matured far quicker than anyone I know. He's only 25 and has 10 slams already. Maturity is a bit subjective and definitely varies from person to person. Andy might just be more mature on all other aspects in life who knows. He definitely handles the pressure amazingly well for a 24 year old.

Going back to Novak again, I don't know if you remember but his game used to be very aggressive late 2007 and early 2008, but now his game is more defensive or mixed I'd say but not as defensive as Rafa. 2008 Andy used to be very aggressive but then 2009 and 2010, he became a bit passive. Only occasionally he would play aggressive. 2011 was more mixed and a bit more controlled hence more success, so I think it's coming together very well for him. Finally he's finding that nice rhythm of range and aggression and at the AO this year, he's remained emotionally more controlled as well and the aggression has taken another level. This, though, I'd say without Lendl's help though there might be a bit of influence there. I really think we only go up from here or hope so.

Going back to Rafa now, prime years for me last about 3 to 5 years. So I'd say he's still in his prime though in tennis years it might just feel old given the length, but I'd say his prime's started in 2008 so this year might just be his last year of success. I don't think he'll faze all at once but it won't be anything like Federer either. Nadal might just be the only one who plays a brand of tennis that's very taxing on the body so I don't think in 4 years time he'll be playing just the same. He'll slide before then. Both Novak and Nadal have taken tennis to another level - a level that I actually don't like - I mean if anyone says they don't like seeing two big servers agaisnt each other then this is no picnic either. I do like both players though. Thankfully, Harrison, Tomic, Nishi, Dolgo... they all play the kind of tennis I actually prefer. Andy of course tops it all. Novak, I feel, will fizzle next year or even later this year.

Long post. Sorry.
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theycanbillme
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #966 on: February 02, 2012, 08:23 AM »
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I remember Novak being an aggressive all court player yes. The reason for his transformation perhaps is that when he started out in 03 Federer was all the rage and so his business model was adopted and now he's slowly transformed himself more to the  defensive mode of Nadal which became the dominant business model. By taking some of one and a bit of the other he is now the brand that matters. Although not nearly as versatile as Andy he can adapt and that's why I think he will get to double figures for slams because I think health permitting, he will still be top 4, 5 years from now. Roger and Rafa never really changed, they just got better at what they do. As for Andy being being more aggressive in 08, didn't watch him then so can't comment. I only ever remember being frustrated by his overly defensive approach which I now believe he stuck with more due to his early success against among others Federer, than it being his natural style. It rarely worked against Nadal also so he had to play at such an extremely high level to be compete against him, rarely winning. He's observed & then taken a leaf out of the new dominant brand of Novak's book and then some, hopefully he'll forge ahead and be the next one to take the initiative. There is a historical pattern in this.
Rafa may only be 25 but he's been on the tour for 11 years now his body has been slowing down for a while, if he loses the RG easily, he might not continue although theres always a chance at wimbledon. But I suspect he is going to change the habit of a lifetime and adapt his game as Murray and Novak have, shortening the points and coming forward. He's one of the best volleyers so there is hope if he changes. It's going to be very interesting too see how it all pans out.
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blueberryhill
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #967 on: February 02, 2012, 08:29 AM »
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theycanbillme: I often wonder if going to the clay courts of Barcelona imprinted this defensive style on Andy. Also, I read somewhere also that he was playing much older players and couldn't, strength wise, out hit them so had to fine tune his game to the defensive. There are some truly awful games on Youtube where Andy just can't, or won't end points.
Don't know about Rafa. Did you see where he was standing to play Berdych? So far behind the base line, you couldn't see him! As soon as he's under stress his game reverts to one he's most comfortable with. Of course they all do that to some extent.
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theycanbillme
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #968 on: February 02, 2012, 09:36 AM »
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theycanbillme: I often wonder if going to the clay courts of Barcelona imprinted this defensive style on Andy. Also, I read somewhere also that he was playing much older players and couldn't, strength wise, out hit them so had to fine tune his game to the defensive. There are some truly awful games on Youtube where Andy just can't, or won't end points.
Don't know about Rafa. Did you see where he was standing to play Berdych? So far behind the base line, you couldn't see him! As soon as he's under stress his game reverts to one he's most comfortable with. Of course they all do that to some extent.

Andy said to Anabelle Croft recently that he feels more comfortable on the baseline than behind it. Does Andy even do lying? Im willing to believe him. There's going to be way more errors at the start but he'll be closer to the net as well, where he rules in my opinion, factor in a better 2nd serve and a few other slight improvements & we shall have a legend in the making.
Let's face it, as insufferable as Federer and Fed fans can be they do have a point. Playing too defensively does not often make for great tennis.  When all is said and done Rafa is the clay court goat. Will he change his style at this stage in order to try and be dominant on the hard courts now that he's been so profoundly exposed by Novak?
Even if Rafa does magically change and I have my doubts, he is going to be replaced soon enough now Andy understands just what to do to move forward.
Anything Novak can do Andy should be able to.
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blueberryhill
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #969 on: February 02, 2012, 09:46 AM »
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theycanbillme, I'll second that last sentence  clap
Just checked ATP website: Rafa turned pro 2001, Novak 2003, Andy 2005.  Seems unbelievable Rafa has been on tour 11 years and only 25! No wonder his body is cracking up. Clearly  Andy is maturing, tennis wise later than Novak. but considering he's been on the tour less than Novak, makes his achievements all the more laudable  yay
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theycanbillme
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #970 on: February 02, 2012, 10:12 AM »
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But he needs to be even more fearless and less safe.
As positive as that semi was in many ways there were some worrying mental habits reaffirmed by Andy, the fourth set give away was a terrible thing.
And this always being more comfortable catching up from behind habit is again a sign of negativity & nerves.
Because of the pressure he exerts on Novak as well as Djoko's own nerves because of it, he was lucky to stop him running away with it at the start.
Lendl should help big time with all of this.
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Alis
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #971 on: February 02, 2012, 11:33 AM »
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I cannot see Rafa changing his style at this stage in his career.  I just can't see him having the desire or will to do it.  He makes no bones about loving being at home and hating being on the road and his body is just not holding up well.  Whatsmore, he has nothing to prove.  If he loses at Rolland Garros, I really feel the heart will go out of him and he will retire, if not then at least by the end of the year. If he does retire I think he will turn his back on tennis completely for a while - much as Borg did.  I would be sorry to see it but it may well be the right thing for Rafa.
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Grabcopy
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #972 on: February 02, 2012, 11:50 AM »
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Andy said to Anabelle Croft recently that he feels more comfortable on the baseline than behind it. Does Andy even do lying? Im willing to believe him. There's going to be way more errors at the start but he'll be closer to the net as well...

That's what the first set vs Novak was all about. He was closer to the net yet still hitting with the same trajectory, meaning that loads of balls flew long.

Am I alone in thinking he needs to make more of his net game? Getting ahead these days is all about Unique Selling Points. Andy's USP is his volley. Both Nole and Rafa can be as aggressive or as passive as you like from the baseline, but neither of them can take the ball out of the air like Andy can.

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blueberryhill
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #973 on: February 02, 2012, 11:58 AM »
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Grabcopy, completely agree, Andy's net game is where he has a terrific advantage over Nole and Rafa. Hope Lendl can encourage.
Alis, apparently Rafa is a very good golfer, perhaps a second career awaits?
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theycanbillme
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Re: Australian Open 2012: The Other Players « Reply #974 on: February 02, 2012, 12:56 PM »
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That's what the first set vs Novak was all about. He was closer to the net yet still hitting with the same trajectory, meaning that loads of balls flew long.

Am I alone in thinking he needs to make more of his net game? Getting ahead these days is all about Unique Selling Points. Andy's USP is his volley. Both Nole and Rafa can be as aggressive or as passive as you like from the baseline, but neither of them can take the ball out of the air like Andy can.



I know, and it will not take him long to re-gauge his shots from the baseline more accurately, and when he does!
I also suggested his strength at the net so you're not alone but
To me his USP is his unpredictability. You can't quite know what he's going to do next there's always a level of uncertainty. This is what throws Novak most of all. He can read your game and you should be able to read his but he will throw you off balance when youre least expecting it.
The same can not really be said of Nadal, Novak, Roger.
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