Sunday, September 10

Super Saturday

I figured someday Maria Sharapova would put it all together and win another Grand Slam tournament. After winning Wimbledon two years ago at the tender age of 17 she became replete with endoresement making her the richest woman athlete in the world. Since then she's come up somewhat a dissapointment to the eyes of her many critics having not won another Major. I suppose 5 straight grand slam semifinals is inadequate considering she rakes in over 20 million in endorsements annualy. What they forget is the fact that she was only 17 when she won Wimbledon. I believe its called growing pains. Pete Sampras went through growing pains failing to win another Major after winning his first also at the age of 17. He went on to win another 13 for a record 14 Slams...

I'm not saying Maria will set records in the WTA tour, but, barring any serious injuries she is going to be a good one for many years to come. Records in the WTA are so outrageous anyway. I've been waiting for such a long time for someone to come close to what the GREAT one's have achieved. Stephie Graf for instance has a career 22 Grand Slam victories and that's not even the record. "Twenty two" Even a big tennis fan like myself can not Phantom that kind of a number. Justine Henin-Hardene arguably the best Tennis player right now has 5 Slams (remarkably winning 2 of 4 this year) but at 25 years of age with her small injury-prone frame its doubtful she comes close to winning 22 when calls it quits. Maria at 19 years of age on the other hand would need to win 2 Slams per year in the next 10 years to match Stephie's feat. That seems a daunting task even for a phenom like her...

Maria won her much anticipated second Grand Slam Saturday night in front of 23,000 New Yorkers, myself and my dad, afixed on the 61 inch Sony TV. I held my breath on every single stroke and long rally, my body ever-so-carefully leaning left to right as Maria ran down balls as if to help her, gasping every time she threw in an unforced error or a double fault (5). For some reason i was pulling hard for Maria (even harder than i did for Elena and Andre). You know in instrospect i've never been a Sharapova fan. I've always pulled for Serena Williams, Lindsay Davenport and Monica Seles... So why now? Maybe because i like the way she punishes the ball and plays harder than anyone in the game. Maybe because she is only 19 and yet exhibits an unflappable desire to win. I mean you couldn't tell if she was down a couple of breaks and a set or serving for the match because the intensity level never goes down. Maybe because behind that pretty face, that long slender figure in that Audrey Hepburn inspired outfit, and multi-million dollar endorsements, are her piercing eyes that wants nothing more than to destroy her oponents. Perhaps i saw in her the potential to be the next GREAT one. Successor to Stephie Graf the greatest tennis player I ever saw... After all she had to beat both the # 1 and 2 Tennis Players in the world to earn the title --US Open Champion-- and above that she did it all in convincing fashion.


At 9:48 AM, Blogger zenmasta said...

Justine only won one this year although she appeared in the finals of all four majors. Amelie won Aussie and Wimbledon.


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