Aug/19

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Andreescu has superhuman, magical powers

Bianca Andreescu accomplished something yesterday at the Canadian Open in Toronto that has never been done before in history. I’m not talking about a teenager from Canada winning the Open or beating a supreme legend in the final.

No, Andreescu did something even more wondrous and awe-inspiring after the contest concluded.

Moments after the match, after Serena Williams retired due to a supposed back injury while trailing Andreescu 3-1, the veteran sports icon was sitting in her chair crying. Andreescu went over to visit her conquest, kneeled down in front of Williams, touched her knees and attentively communicated with her verbally and with her eyes.

In just seconds, the distraught Serena suddenly began laughing and smiling away her painful sobbing. Andreescu somehow showed she has the magical powers via her words and communication skills, to manipulate Serena’s emotions and turn them from a negative into a positive. A mere 19 year old accomplished this with a 37 year old all time queen of the sport.

The ability to take Serena from agony to joy with just a few words is undoubtedly a rare special talent that Andreescu possesses, along with her many other tennis skills.

Bianca Andreescu showed yesterday in so many ways she is an extraordinary personality and champion, and it’s only the beginning of a fresh new unique reign the tennis world is avidly excited to witness.

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129 comments

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 9:04 am

    Dimitrov has no plan B on court, and whereas he should be hitting flat groundstrokes as Wawrinka is, he hits with a lot of spin so his shots set up an aggressive super freak like Wawrinka.

    Dimitrov may just be uncoachable. After enough time as a spectator, seeing a player with such a grand array of shots, I wonder why Dimitrov hasn’t improved his tactics.

    Then I see Wawrinka, across the net from Wawrinka, who did just that.

    Is Wawrinka more talented? No. But is Wawrinka more willing to think better on court, work on combinations that hold up against super shotmaking?

    The obvious answer is yes.

    Dimitrov torpedoed his own chances for slam glory. Not the big four. At some point we’re all going to look at the competitors that the slam champs from 2004-2019/2020 had and judge them, and say “they never went beyond what they were good at”, “they didn’t know the game as well as the slam champs”, “they were talented shotmakers that weren’t very mentally tough”; “they didn’t add to their game when that’s the only thing that mattered”.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 9:11 am

    Tommy Paul seems ok with the fuss. Paul knows he’s playing well and that he has a good chance of getting through qualies.

    All of these players should see this as a great opportunity. Fritz lament was a little much – I guess these guys have started to identify with their wolf pack. They probably should, because while we’re here talking about the next generation of Donaldson, Fritz, Paul, Tiafoe etc, there’s a whole next next generation right behind them.

    Ask the Australian trio of Kokkinakis, Kyrgios, Tomic. De Minaur has come to eat their lunch. If Fritz and Co. can’t get the job done there’s a whole slew of players ready to stampede them.

    Such is sport.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 9:20 am

    Oh no, not again. Ok, was hoping TP was back in the saddle with tennis as the driver. Scoop, what the heck, man? You and Dan put together a meaningful tennis forum and instead you prefer to destroy anything going for it and undermine the fine “prose” that Dan and you put forth.

    How disappointing yet again. It was nice to read of the adventures of Callum and like Scoop said the subcultures of different tennis tournaments. It was great to read Catherine’s poignant observations of Kerber and the WTA. It was fun to read Hartt comments on Canadian tennis. But as it was earlier it all unravels. Sorry to see the board self implode. It’s the equivalent of serving two sets and double faults every point.

  • Hartt · August 14, 2019 at 9:32 am

    Andrew, please don’t leave! I enjoy your posts and learn a lot from them. I agree with you about the non-tennis rants, but have learned to ignore them so I can enjoy the good things about this site.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 9:46 am

    Yes we should have ended that debate days ago but it kept on going. Dan let it go and let’s stick to tennis, not over-misinterpreting a one word compliment ny the Canadian Open champion. Move on to Cincy. Isner downed bt Carrena Busta, first meeting.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 9:54 am

    Fritz did challenge the snub of Paul and Paul backed him but Eubanks got the next WC. Paul has to accept and use this injustice to fuel his fury. And make no mistake about it, this is a blatant injustice against Tommy Paul. BTW Paul leads the head to head vs Eubanks 2-1, winning the last two matches in straight sets last year in Champaign and in 2017 in a Futures. Eubanks won in 2106 in Atlanta qualies.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 10:08 am

    Just sorry to see two excellent tennis writers battle over nothing. If this were other very unfortunate public incidents in pro tennis, that would be worthwhile to debate.

    I’m surprised TP and Dan hasn’t gone full howitzer on the betting in tennis issues, and the fact the ATP is or was or had made a deal with IMG Arena, whereby ATP data is available for sports betting. It’s a can of worms and perfect for such insightful tennis analysts.

    There are a handful of writers I enjoy reading on tennis and two of them are Dan and Scoop. When everything devolves it becomes tough to stomach.

    Yes I enjoy reading Hartt and Catherine very much. Dan of course as he’s very fair, and often picks up on things that I wouldn’t ever consider. Scoop too with his unparalleled access to players, it’s very special he put together all these memories on living legends. Those kinds of recollections as we all know tend to disappear as new players come along. An avalanche of articles about today’s players make everyone forget how good other players have been and the connections between the tour of yesteryear and today.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 10:17 am

    No player should want a wildcard, and tournaments shouldn’t give more than a few. I appreciate the reciprocal wildcard, whereby the US Open grants a French or British or Australian player a wildcard to get a wildcard to French Open or Wimbledon.

    Escobedo won the wild card challenge via his results this summer, there was a set process etc so everyone knew the rules.

    Yes, Paul and Eubanks both should be in the qualies. If you don’t earn the wildcard and you aren’t a junior Nationals champion or NCAA champion (all have the reserved wildcard) then no, no wildcard should be granted. There’s an exception for say former US Open finalists, champs, if Federer was at #112 in rankings in 2021, etc – fine.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 10:21 am

    Appreciate the kind words Andrew, and I will discuss with Dan to keep it to tennis. And thanks for the rebuke, everyone needs it now and then when things get off track. It was a surprise that the tennis media had much or anything to say about the huge billion dollar deal IMG made with the ATP about ATP data. It was very under-reported and even commented on in tennis forum sites. It’s like it happened and everybody just ignored it. I believe gambling in tennis is a serious issue and this deal only adds to the trouble as it will encourage more gambling on tennis. Nobody in the structure of pro tennis seems to want to talk about it.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 10:22 am

    Harold’s good too! I like reading Harold’s comments too.

  • Hartt · August 14, 2019 at 10:24 am

    Someone asked earlier about the reaction of the Canadian media to Andreescu winning the Rogers Cup. There was so much it took me a couple days to catch up with it all.

    As you’d expect, there was a lot on sports media. But what was exciting was coverage by the general media. Canada’s two major newspapers, the Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail had big front page photos of Bianca with headlines about her title. In fact, the Star did that for her SF win as well. The CBC news program, The National, had a feature and a long interview with her. This is unusual and shows what a big deal she is right now.

    Obviously nothing is certain in tennis, but if Bianca continues to do well she will have a major impact on Canadians’ interest in tennis. In fact, she already has.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 10:25 am

    Remember the Jose Higueras view on wildcards. He hated them. Because in his mind a wildcard meant the player wasn’t working hard enough. That’s the right philosophy. Got to earn it. All those wildcards Donald Young got might have been a curse in disguise. One reader on the old tennisweek.com forum researched that DY got six figures, between $200,000 to $400,000 in prize money just from all the wildcards he got.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 10:30 am

    Hartt, Andreescu is the kind of player and personality who can change a sport, she inspires wonderful reactions from everyone, from fans, media, legends like Santoro and Gigi Fernandez. Bibi has the x factor, superstar appeal, charisma, personality, and she is not afraid of anyone. She slays the dragons of tennis and does it in good spirit and charm and with a smile. She slayed Serena and even made her smile and laugh about it moments late. That’s a special quality. She is intriguing and fascinating. Have no doubt she will be a pioneer for Canadian tennis and all the rest of the talented players under her will be inspired and sparked by her example.

  • Hartt · August 14, 2019 at 10:46 am

    My rather long post on WCs disappeared before I could post it. So will just say I am not a fan, especially of young players receiving a lot of them. They would be better off playing Challengers and qualies.

    If I were dictator of tennis I would have WCs for good players who are coming back from injuries, and for players who recently shot up in the rankings, so their new ranking would have given them direct entry into the tourney. And perhaps, VERY rarely, for a very promising young player, especially if he/she is local and fans are keen to see them.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 12:29 pm

    Or how about a batch of worthy wildcard candidates picked out of a hat?

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 12:49 pm

    Harrison’s wildcards weren’t helpful – his two best and most memorable runs at the US Open were in 2011 and in 2016, and both years he fought through qualies. Recall Harrison was receiving many wildcards previously until 2015 when he lost to Kozlov at a challenger and was out of sorts, breaking down in front of press, seeking press, yelling at his dad.

    His comeback had begun on the challengers and slowly, surely with stable coaching and his girlfriend McHale’s sister began a climb back up. The wildcards were awful for Harrison – he became a sideshow.

    Harrison had to be cut off from wildcards and he was, and it worked. He worked his way to his first and only title. Hundred percent merit.

    That’s what players need to do. They should decline wildcards.

    DY got much better in challengers and it was his desire to leave them forever that pushed him.

    It’s the same for every challenger player with exception of Robert Kendrick I think who loved being the GOAT of the challengers!!!

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 12:52 pm

    The US Open actually had an excellent system for wildcard allocation – one year I think it was only US Open challenger wildcard winner, a reciprocal wildcard for Australia and France and UK maybe to guarantee a spot for a US player in the future, NCAA champ and Kalamazoo champ, that’s it.

    About as close to perfect allocation as possible. If a player was close but no cigar they played challengers.

  • Harold · August 14, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    Maybe they could give a WC to the winner of NY Open, Atlanta, Washington if that person is past the direct entry in the rankings. Adds something to those events.

    The gambling data deal is a bad look, so is giving ATP points to the Laver Cup..sucking up to the big boys

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 1:19 pm

    Kozlov just posted on Instagram to Paul after their practice in South florida, “Sorry I wasted your time, you can charge me for a lesson next time.” Tommy must be playing fired up, chip on shoulder tennis.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 1:22 pm

    Wildcards don’t really help. Except for filling a bank account. Paul needs the money. In Tallahassee he told me he had to sell his BMW and was ubering everywhere.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 1:23 pm

    Andrew, does the ncaa champ still get it? Can’t recall one ever winning one round at us open.

  • jg · August 14, 2019 at 2:32 pm

    Sock does not need the wildcard money, these other guys do, and they are more deserving than Sock, let him beat them in challengers if he can.

  • Dan Markowitz · August 14, 2019 at 2:36 pm

    Sorry, Andrew, if you feel the discussion on Bianca and Serena and the “beast” comment was non-tennis fare. I disagree. I think it has a lot to do with tennis. In fact, I find the asides players say to each other by their chairs often tells you a lot about players and their sensibilities and competitive fires. It certainly did when Mac and Jimmy went after each other.

    I think anything that happens on a tennis court is tennis. I’m not looking at this incident so much in racial terms although I think it was a faux pas on Andreescu’s account. I don’t think she’s a racist. I just think it was the wrong word to use when approaching Serena.

    Who knows? Maybe Serena didn’t think so or hasn’t thought twice about it. Look this web site goes on its meandering way. I don’t read all of anyone’s posts. I think it’s like going to a Chinese Restaurant and choosing from Column A and Column B. You take from it what interests you. I only have trouble when people go after each and say things like, “I’m not interested in this discussion.” If you’re not interested, don’t read and don’t respond, but I’m not into censuring people.

  • Hartt · August 14, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    In my post about Bianca’s effect on media coverage, I’d meant to say that the Bianca vs Serena final got over 590,000 views on Canadian TV, twice that for the men’s final.

    Milos helped get much better TV coverage here for the ATP matches, now if Bianca can only have the same impact on WTA TV coverage, which is pretty well non-existent on the English sports channels and only slightly better on the French ones.

  • Scoop Malinowski · August 14, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    Hartt, for sure Andreescu can transcend the sport and she proved in Canada she has superstar draw power. The more she wins the more people see her, the bigger she will grow. Count on it.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 5:52 pm

    Thanks Dan. I don’t see Andreescu comment in same way. I used to say so and so is a beast on the court. My coach used to call another #1 a tiger. I saw it as a player called another player a superstar, someone that’s formidable. If anyone caught the Bouzkova vs Serena match they should have come away thinking how formidable Serena is, how lucky we are to have her in the sport.

    I’ve met her, she’s really wonderful to fans. I think I said here that I trained oh so briefly at the same academy, and that some tennis parents were grumbling and saying the Williams weren’t that good blah blah blah.

    Guess what? They were that good. Anyone that saw them before they turned pro knew this. I knew this, having seen them hit before they turned pro. The academy did not then and did not afterwards have a better player than either Williams sister.

    But whatever Andreescu said was pretty gentle and not demeaning in intention. I’m sure Andreescu would love the same kind of respect from opponents.

    But that’s how I see it. There are many other incidents that have been terrible tennis. So far as what I can tell, this one is minor to nothing. But that’s how I see it.

  • Andrew Miller · August 14, 2019 at 5:54 pm

    Annointing anyone the next anything is a mistake. Especially with three different slam champions in the last three wta slams.

  • jg · August 14, 2019 at 6:53 pm

    Who knew? There’s a WTA tournament in the Bronx next week, must be at Cary Leeds?

  • catherine · August 15, 2019 at 9:09 am

    I’m late to the party here (been offline for a couple of days) but just want to say how much I appreciate Andrew’s return – he has really invigorated discussion on T-P. Please stay Andrew.

    Also a late note on Kerber – how much I’d like her to have one more good year in the game – if she fails at the USO she’ll be out of the top 20. And it’s an interesting point – I don’t actually think she’s had a tremendous impact on the women’s game in Germany, although I’m sure this is the legacy she’d like the most. Maybe something to do with the odd contradictions in her personality.

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