The Australian open was won by Li Na in females and Stanislas Wawrinka in males. Both won comfortably. They have certain similarities. At their peak, both are the most complete players in women’s and men’s tennis respectively. But in the past both had problems focusing on the game.
The best thing about Li Na is that she plays well on both flanks, back and forehand with equal vigour. This is mainly because she has a almost perfect hip rotation while making a backhand or forehand shot. If we were to contrast this with another player who hits with equal force, it will be the tall and beautiful Maria Sharapova. Maria can also hit both backhand and forehand shots with Li Na force but her hip rotation is very poor and consequently most of her shots from both sides land near the centreline rather than the sidelines, as is the case with Li Na. She needs to have some dance lessons and she can become a better player.
But Li Na and Maria Sharpova share the same temperament. Both find it difficult to focus on the game for a prolonged period of time but Li Na is getting better with her new coach and passage of time.
This Australian Open also saw the early exit of Serena Williams at the hands of Ana Ivanovic. Ana’s excellent tennis on that day was matched only by her excellent figure.
This Australian open also saw the emergence of another woman tennis star in Eugenie Bouchard. She plays well on both flanks, and has good hip rotation. But she needs to cover the court better, serve better and stay calm on court if she wants to rise further in women tennis than she did at Australian open.
Women tennis at present has so many beautiful tennis players that one has to make a choice whether to watch them or their tennis.
The final of women tennis was a bit one sided with Li Na in such imperial form that she demolished the gutsy and exuberant Dominika Cibulkova in short time. But the final was interesting because of the near perfect tennis Li Na played to win only her second grand slam major. For such a complete player, she definitely can have a far better record.
The men’s tennis was also very good. It showed the new winner in Stanislas Wawrinka. He so completely dominated the final against Nadal and was so brutal in his onslaught against him that he would have won in three straight sets under two hours if in the second half of second set, Nadal had not suddenly fallen sick.
I think the caliber of Wawrinka tennis blasted Nadal off his feet and hurt him in mind and heart as much as in the body. He knew he was going to lose and got very tense. I think he gyms a lot, more than is needed. When winning its all right but when losing so badly, mental tension builds up and sends already tense muscles into spasm. This is what happened to Nadal. In such cases I advise injection Diazepam 20 mg intravenous stat. It will cause drowsiness for 1-2 minutes but will ease mental tension and muscle spasm.
Anyway Wawrinka is in the form of his life and in this form, there is no other tennis player who can beat him at present.
Another thing about Nadal is that he has a high kick serve and high kick shots because of topspin he imparts and which comes higher than normal on the baseline. This makes it difficult for players like Roger Federer. But Stanislas Wawrinka neutralized it by standing further behind the baseline, both when receiving serve and taking shots, and thus hitting the ball not at its zenith but when it was low enough in his range. Most players play Nadal at zenith height and most of the time lose to him. But this tactic also helped Wawrinka to curl the ball over the net at amazing angles. Overall Wawrinka played a flawless technical game.
He is as good with his backhand as with his forehand and this outmaneuvered Nadal on both flanks. Roger Federer is not as strong on his backhand and this gives Nadal one flank, which he has exploited mercilessly between their clashes. Also Federer stands near the baseline and receives the ball at its zenith making it difficult to control his backhand at his height.
But there is another way of dealing with high kick serves and shots and which is to take the ball earlier when its in the rising phase and has not yet reached its zenith. For that one has to be ready to receive serve 1to 2 feet inside the baseline and also ready to take his topspin shots from inside the baseline. Even volleying from inside the baseline and near the net will give better results.
I have invented one more serve receiving position. It’s standing near the net as in doubles and volleying the ball as its served but before it lands on the court. Alternately one can stand on the top line of the serve receiving box and play a half volley on either flank. Both are very difficult shots to play but with practice can be very rewarding and can neutralize any type of serve.
This Australian open has seen many rise and fall of players and was very interesting to watch.