Jul/17

15

Muguruza looks unstoppabale

20120702.222922_wimbGarbine Muguruza is plowing through Venus Williams at the moment, up a set and a break and it looks like there is no way to halt this outrageously dominant display of power tennis by the Spaniard.

Muguruza showed a sampling of this unbeatable form vs Angelique Kerber earlier in the week and she has maintained the level.

You get the sense anything Venus throws at Muguruza it’s coming back with interest. Forehand, backhand, movement, precision, defense, everything is working successfully for Muguruza who should be moments away from achieving her second Grand Slam major singles title. And by the looks of what we are seeing today, plenty more are going to be hers for the taking.

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73 comments

  • Hartt · July 16, 2017 at 2:21 pm

    Regarding Muguruza and Conchita Martinez. the Canadian sports channel had a brief interview with Conchita. When asked how she had helped Garbi, Conchita replied that it was having her be more patient, not going for the big shot so soon. Hit an aggressive shot, but with more margin until there was a good opportunity for a winner. I imagine Sam has said the same thing, but Conchita got through to Mugu. There was a definite change in how she played. If she keeps doing that, she will be more consistent and should do better in other tourneys.

  • catherine · July 16, 2017 at 2:36 pm

    Unfortunately it looks like Conchita will be only marginally involved with Muguruza in future and Sam will be back. But you do wonder if Garbine would have made her breakthrough if Conchita had not been there this Wimbledon – just speaking with a different voice and having a calming influence.

  • Andrew Miller · July 16, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    Hartt, I noticed Muguruza played that way, not painting the lines but going with VERY high percentage deep shots to each part of the back court. It didn’t work against Coco in Australia, but it looked perfected at Wimbledon. Must be Conchita, now that you said it! I was doubtful about all this, this strategy, but she moved the ball to deeper spots with low margin of error this time around (slightly higher margin of risk and enhanced placement). She was truly formidable and her opponents would have to play high risk high reward shock tennis to win. Venus is capable of that and showed how it works, and couldn’t keep it up.

    Great playing. Conchita took something Muguruza does perfected it and lined it up better with how Muguruza plays. Nice marriage of power pace and placement, without going overboard. And heavy serving.

    It was admittedly very fine work.

  • Scoop Malinowski · July 16, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    Conchita will be Garby’s full time coach I predict – they won it without SSumyk who has got to be worried now about job security – She won it without him. I remember Andy Murray won his first title in San Jose without his coach McLagen. He won the title with just his girlfriend Kim Sears with him. Sure enough, Miles Mclagen was soon out of a job. As Sam Sumyk may soon be. Why wasn’t he there?

  • Hartt · July 17, 2017 at 1:07 am

    Sumyk wasn’t there because his wife is expecting their first child.

    Conchita has said she won’t be extending her coaching relationship with Garbine. She is the captain of the Spanish Fed Cup and Davis Cup teams.

    In terms of working with Garbine, she also stressed playing point by point – being focused on every point and not thinking about anything else. I always loved the way Laver said it – think only about the ball, nothing but the ball. Tennis players are told this but it must be extremely tough to actually do it.

  • catherine · July 17, 2017 at 2:57 am

    Andrew – maybe that’s why Muguruza can have those big losses sometimes – when that strategy doesn’t work, for whatever reason. Or she’s just slightly off. Conchita made the difference perhaps – but I don’t think she’ll replace Sam, Scoop – or I’d be very surprised, from the way she talked.

    Kerber’s Finest Hour at W’don was to give her opponent such a tough match that Garbine’s confidence was high, and who knows ? could’ve made her final victory possible.
    Unfortunately. as Angie said, there was only one winner in Rnd 4 ‘and today it wasn’t me.’

    Be nice to think W’don a realistic ambition for her but I suspect that ship has sailed. She’s ranked 3 as from today. Not a bad thing neccessarily, as we’ve all agreed at different times.

    Hartt – BJK said that as well,about the ball, or something similar, so obviously great minds think alike. After all, the ball is the most important item on the court :)

  • catherine · July 17, 2017 at 3:03 am

    Women’s rankings are like someone’s tried shuffling the deck and dropped all the cards on the floor :)

  • Andrew Miller · July 17, 2017 at 9:05 am

    Catherine, reshuffle that deck! I predict no one will predict the Canada and Cincinatti masters winners in the wta and that neither of those winners will hoist the us open title this year!!!

  • catherine · July 17, 2017 at 10:41 am

    Andrew –
    What I can predict is that there will be plenty of retirements and flop-outs in tournaments running up to USO :)

  • Andrew Miller · July 17, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Catherine, good call! Someone will lose in straight sets in inexplicable fashion and find themselves deep in the us open draw.

  • Andrew Miller · July 17, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Back to prediction land. In Ostapenko and Muguruza, we have two hungry slam champs. Does it make sense to put any stock into this, or are we looking at a first time champ at the us open? The us open always favors fitness and durability – you have to be the best player on the court and be able to take the heat and the conditions.

    I’ll go out and say I’m not convinced either has a big chance in new York. The opportunity is there but I think both may check out and wait for the fall to make some serious appearance fees. Muguruza hasn’t faded, but all champs have to face the emotional draining…of winning!

  • catherine · July 18, 2017 at 2:48 am

    That’s why I suggested earlier that Muguruza might be facing a slump after becoming Spain’s most famous woman – I think USO champ might be someone who’s been there, or nearly there, before.

  • Andrew Miller · July 18, 2017 at 9:15 am

    Will Muguruza beat Aranxta SanchezVicario records? I think what you are suggesting Catherine is right, it’s all about status in country. Kerber cares about Germany fandom Muguruza Spainards etc. They are heroes and can do no wrong. My laments fall on deaf ears!

  • Hartt · July 18, 2017 at 10:15 am

    On the radio program “Aces” they had an interview with Nathalie Tauziat. She was runner-up at the 1998 Wimbledon (lost to Novotna) and reached No. 3 in the rankings. Tauziat is now coaching the Canadian player, 17-year-old Bianca Andreescu.

    She was asked about differences between young players now and when she was playing. She echoed what we have often said here, that they don’t have enough variety. She mentioned in particular the lack of a slice and not coming to the net. Presumably they are making sure those aren’t problems for Bianca.

  • catherine · July 18, 2017 at 11:58 am

    Hartt – well Federer said the same thing the other day, why don’t others try to play like me ?

    Some players have slice but they don’t seem to use it much. Fipkens does, and she employed it against Kerber at Wimbledon – caused Angie some bother with low bounce.

    Simona can slice as well but mainly doesn’t.

    As for the net game – well. Interesting looking at the courts by the end of Wimbledon – the baseline worn away and the rest of the court pristine !
    (and that’s taking into account wear and tear from serving)

    I wonder does Nathalie live in Canada now ?

  • Hartt · July 18, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Because I love to watch serve-and-volley I do wish more players used it more often. And I get Fed’s point, it’s extremely difficult to win against the top players playing from the baseline. But I have some sympathy for the ATP players, when they are up against great returners like Fed and Novak it is a big risk coming to the net. Fed is just waiting to pass them. :)

    I don’t know enough about WTA players using serve-and-volley to comment about them, but I do enjoy watching players like Muguruza when they are coming in more.

    I don’t think Nathalie lives in Canada, she shares the coaching duties, and of course she has children, which I imagine would make it difficult to move. But she has a long-standing relationship with Tennis Canada, having coached Bouchard and Aleks Wozniak. I think the link came through Borfiga, who is now head of the high performance section of Tennis Canada and whom she would know from his relationship with the French Federation.

  • Andrew Miller · July 18, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    Fed loves passing shots and Nadal and Djokovic too. But same goes for juniors. Aces and passing shots and drop shots, fierce net exchanges and top spun lobs are what the sport offers at the highest level. It’s hard looking at players games to justify being a baseliner. To Muguruza, Venus, Ostapenko, Halep, Serena credit, even Pliskova, all own a nice or decent volley.

    I’ll say this, Federer talked about how he feels odd off centre courts. So word to Felix, young and players, start practicing on and enjoying centre court. Your familiarity like Nadal knowing every centimeter of stade Roland Garros pays off.

  • catherine · July 18, 2017 at 1:29 pm

    Andrew – re fandom, I believe Angelique would swap all the fans in Germany for one Wimbledon title :)

    Quite a lot of women can volley, although you feel they’d really rather not.

  • Andrew Miller · July 18, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Catherine, really? Seems Kerber was soaking up the attention in Germany with the media blitz and talk shows. Even if she may have been on a mere few. Maybe Kerber needed a better media agent. Federer has had his forever. Is there a player alive who plans his or her schedule better than Federer?

  • catherine · July 18, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Oh I’m sure Angie soaked it up at the end of last year but she may feel a little differently now.

    And what wouldn’t she want more than anything as she nears the end of her career ? She’ll never have a FO but wouldn’t it be a nice pattern completed if the runner-up at W’don 2016 follows the runner-up at W’don 2015 in 2018 ?

  • Andrew Miller · July 18, 2017 at 3:12 pm

    I’d guess a natural thought for Kerber would be to see Muguruza, who she fought to a near standstill, with the trophy and a two year gap between her final and winning the title and say to herself “that could be me”.
    I’d say as a fan, who knows? Wimbledon does favor players that like it and that are good athletes and shot makers – even Bartoli, who somehow got a Wimbledon title, was a fine shotmaker.
    I’d wager Seles, if she hadn’t felt it necessary to turn off her grunting back in 1992? would also have found her way to a Wimbledon dish given her range.

    So Kerber is on a short list of potential champs. That’s pretty unbelievable if you ask me, as again it wasn’t long ago that Kerber was in the same sentence as Petkovic and Lisicki, another past Wimbledon finalist. Here she is as a future hall of fame first ballot player. Ball is in her court, but she’s going to make it interesting in this brave new world of no one knows who will win any title on the wta tour.

  • catherine · July 19, 2017 at 9:02 am

    Andrew – just noticed your comment on Centre Courts – great idea but you can’t choose to be on the Centre Court, neither can you practise on it (heaven forbid !) so perhaps you were speaking figuratively.

  • Andrew Miller · July 19, 2017 at 10:23 am

    Wow! I didn’t know that. I guess just more practice on any kind of stadium court. Where I am players can practice on the stadium court used for pro tournaments. Familiarity with it should be of at larger and more grand venues.

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