U.S.A. Tennis Disappoints (Again)

29 05 2012

Before the French Open even had a chance to begin, America’s most recognized Men’s player and highest ATP ranking Women’s player decided to continue to hurt the sport of tennis.

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For the first time since 2007, Andy Roddick was defeating in the first round at a Grand Slam tournament. The French Open has never gone well for Roddick but losing to 88th-ranked Nicolas Mahut 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 Sunday adds to his many disappointments throughout his career.

Roddick still has not picked up a win on clay this year and sits at 7-10 so far.

The 29-year-old American could not find a way to solidify his footwork, a problem that has arisen year after year. On Sunday, Roddick couldn’t even find a way to get his serving going – his one strong point – as he only hit eight aces compared to Mahut’s 13.

Even though he has found a way to get fairly deep in the other three Grand Slam tournaments, Roddick can’t seem to find success in Roland Garros, making it past the fourth round only once in 10 tries and losing in his first match five of those times.

When the top tennis players come out to play, they come out with an ability to beat their opponent in many different ways from many different angles. Even though Rafael Nadal goes against the norm by typically sitting back behind the baseline and using his strength to power his way to victory, he still can adjust to his opponent. Roddick has now been playing professional tennis for 10 years and still can’t find a way to take his game to the next level. Now being past his prime, he may never figure it out.

When Serena Williams was ousted by Ekaterina Makarova during her pursuit for an Australian Open title in January, many looked at this defeat as a fluke. Well, Williams now has had two supposed flukes that have occured in two straight Grand Slam tournaments.

Williams can now join Roddick along with the rest of the tennis viewers as she had to accept a 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3 loss to 111th-ranked (Yes, 110 tennis players are better than her) Virginie Razzano. Prior to this match, Williams had won all 46 of her Grand Slam 1st round matches.

Razzano had to work for this win, though, as these two gave fans the best ending to a tennis match since John Isner and Nicolas Mahut decided to have a tournament of their own.

The 30-year old American came within two points of finishing off the match on nine different occasions and endured a wild, 23-minute final game that just continued to continue.

The pressure could not stop building as each player had to make many difficult shots and the umpire had to be right on top of the back-and-forth battle. The tennis would not stop. After 30 points had been exchanged between the two women, Razzano finally came out on top after a 3 hours and 3 minutes arduous match.

Standing as the current leader in major championships (13), the fifth-seeded Williams seemed to be an easy favorite to take home this Grand Slam, especially since she had won her previous 17 clay matches. Instead, she will have to try to forget France and her 47 unforced errors once Wimbledon rolls around next month.

Unlike Roddick, Williams has been a consistently successful tennis player that has made our country proud. She gives an image for “American Tennis.” With her early departure, America’s interest level in Women’s Tennis in the French Open just dropped below Men’s Professional Ultimate Frisbee.

 

With these two players coming up short so early on in Paris and no young players from the red, white and blue predicted to provide some form of a spark, it is scary where American tennis is at right now. The redundancy of articles relating to the inconsistencies from these players and the nostalgia brought about pertaining to the “good ‘ol days” with Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi can’t be stopped and this won’t be stopped.

This won’t be stopped until an American emerges and decides to actually win a Grand Slam tournament. Serena Williams is capable.

But who else has this ability? Unfortunately and undeniably, until another player proves the tennis world wrong, the correct answer is no one.

 

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One response

30 05 2012
thenewsofsports

Serena looked completely out of it against Razzano, her footwork was just horrendous. It looked like she just wanted to outhit Razzano completely, and ended up making too many unforced errors. Bad strategy too, because Razzano didn’t play all that well either and seemed hurt or something.

On the other hand, Brian Baker seems to be a good player. It’s my first time hearing about him, but what a story! Classic comeback story.

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