Australian Open Recap
This was one of the most exciting Grand Slams that I have seen in a long time. That being said, I think it’s fair to say that the women carried this Grand Slam. On the men’s side, we had some great matches, but in the end, it was Roger Federer holding the trophy. Not to take anything away from Roger, but when are the younger guys going to step up? Are we going see Federer and Nadal well into their late thirties win these tournaments?
We’re obviously watching something special with Federer – and Nadal to an extent. However, the fact that both are still predictably winning these events gives the men’s tour a lack of excitement in my opinion. And to top it off, we have half of the men’s top five either injured or on the come-back trail. Not having Murray, Djokovic and Wawrinka on the tour and in top form hurts the competitiveness of these events on the men’s side.
The women are picking up the slack
It’s a good thing the women have picked up the slack! On the women’s side, we witnessed some exciting marathon matches from the likes of Simona Halep, Caroline Wozniacki and Angelique Kerber. Both Halep and Wozniacki reached the final having been down match points in previous matches, and were somehow able to push through.
One of the things I liked a lot about the women’s side of the tournament was the fact that the “power” women’s players, such as Muguruza, Kvitova, and Pliskova were virtually a non-factor. Halep easily got past Pliskova in the quarters, while Muguruza lost to Jessika Ponchet (256) in the second round, and Kvitova lost in the first round to Andrea Petkovic (98).
So why did I like these “power” players go down? Because watching the athleticism of Halep, Kerber and Wozniacki makes for more exciting points game in and game out. Also, one of the things I’ve started to notice is how this trio was able to go from defense to offense due to their fitness and shot making ability.
Going from defense to offense on a dime has been traditionally a quality of men’s tennis. However, time and time again we see Wozniacki or Kerber get back into a point from a defensive position, get their opponent into a defensive position, and hit the winner. If that trend continues in women’s tennis, watch out! The Sharapova style of play will be a thing of the past. You won’t be able to power your way through a player.