Tuesday, September 4, 2012

U.S. Open--what they said

The defending champ is looking like she did last year--stubborn.
Pam Shriver

Well, I never thought that I was going to lose, but you certainly don't want to get ahead of yourself and think, Oh, I have just broken back again; I'm going to win.
Sam Stosur

Again, she made me play my best tennis.
Victoria Azarenka

I’ll warm her up today, but not tomorrow.
Sara Errani, referring to Roberta Vinci

You don’t want to know what I kept telling myself. I would have to beep that, I think.
Victoria Azarenka

Take a breath....
Pam Shriver

...I knew we were playing a good match. It was exciting and there was, you know, momentum here, momentum there. We were hitting winners and running all over the court. So I knew that was going on.  Again, you can feel that, but you don't sit down at change of ends and say, "Oh, gee, this is fun" or anything. They are the matches you like to play.  They're the most enjoyable, but not necessarily at the moment you've got that going through your head.
Sam Stosur

I hope you enjoyed it because I surely did.
Victoria Azarenka


Todd.Spiker said...

...although I could probably have done without Shriver attempting to channel a "guy in the stands," saying he might be watching Azarenka, thinking, "All right, we have to put up with your screaming, do we have to put up with your missed tosses, too!"

Even if she was only doing it in fun, it just perpetuates that whole entire mess/non-story.

Diane said...

That comment upset me; Shriver just had to say it, didn't she?

Roi said...

The media is a really strange universe of minds: They've spent the last year and a half creating this Azarenka monster, the playing banshee, the unfriendly "girl", the rude you-name-it, she will spit on your kid's face...

Then they are mortified when she is not the most likeable #1 EVER!!! Of course she is not, the quarter match was the perfect example of how occasional tennis fans are completely biased against her, barely recognizing her and celebrating any fluke shot of Stosur like matchpoint.

The only thing I like about this whole non-sotry is the way Vika is dealing with it, unapologetically being the legitimate #1 player.

Todd.Spiker said...

Yeah, nothing against Stosur, but there was really no reason for American tennis spectators to be cheering an Azarenka double-fault or rooting as openly as so many were in that match, other than for the fact that outlets like ESPN have spent so much time documenting all the reasons why "fans" would have issues with her, rather than why they should admire how her career has evolved over the past year.

Even during Shriver's on-court interview w/ Azarenka in the previous match, it just seemed to go on and on in some sort of vaccuum where the crowd had little or no reaction to what Vika was saying. And she was trying to interact with the crowd and get some response, but it just felt like she was being somewhat ignored, and on some sort of "probation" period in which she had to prove herself "worthy" of support. And I think I lot of that has to do with ESPN's coverage of her, and the "party line" that has sort of developed.

Of course, there used to be a tinge of that with Djokovic, too (w/ the many pre-serve ball bounces, and his mini-feud-that-really-wasn't w/ Roddick a couple of years back). But he managed to mostly turn that around, so maybe Azarenka can, too.

Diane said...

The strange thing, to me, is that I find it extraordinarily easy to like Azarenka. She's intelligent, interesting, comfortable in her own skin, and a great athlete. I only wish there were more like her.

Eric said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eric said...

Azarenka is the new Venus circa 1997-98. Give her another 10 years. People will adore her by then.


But actually, that seems to be the case for the players who seem...self-sufficient (only word coming to mind...)...I mean it's taken about 10 years for Sharapova's diehard fans to come out in force too. And no, I'm not talking about pubescent boys.

Diane said...

I agree, Eric. People want "personality" in the female players, but only if it's a certain type of personality. I think our top players are all great, in their own individual ways. Some are witty, some are cranky, some are a bit strange. They all add so much to the sport.

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