Hello there bloggies!
First of all, let me apologize for the silence on the blog front. Moving, working, and trying to enjoy the New England summer have all gotten in the way. But no longer. With August coming to an end, the blog shall re-awaken.
But who hasn’t been slacking this summer: the women of the WTA!!
Let’s catch up on what’s gone on the women’s tour:
1) Serena is amazing but life goes on
The major storyline after the Aussie Open was Serena’s pregnancy and subsequent absence from the tour for the rest of the season. The immediate response: WTF is the women’s tour going to do?
Well, guess what they did. Something completely radical. They played some brilliant tennis! Competitive matches, new names, familiar faces, and complete unpredictability. While losing probably the best player ever will always hurt, the tour will endure now and whenever Serena decides to retire.
2) This is a different Garbine
One of the players filling the void left by the G.O.A.T. is Wimbledon champ Garbine Muguruza. But her re-establishment started in her title defense at the French Open during and after the match with Frenchwoman KiKi Mladenovic. Yes, she lost that match in 3 sets. Yes, there were tears at the subsequent press conference. More importantly though, Garbine showed her fight and her maturity. That maturity led her to an impressive march to the Wimbledon title, a hard-court title in Cincinnati, and to be the odds-on favorite at the US Open. Don’t expect Muguruza to fade away with the pressure this time.
3) Oh heeeeyyyy Venus. We see you
Now who did Garbine beat for the Wimby title? None other than youngster Venus Williams. She will not let the WTA become Williams-free. You can’t say more about this effort and this consistency form Venus. How freaking impressive is she!
4) What will Ostapenko become
Jelena Ostapenko’s storming to the French Open championship was one of the most stunning and amazing performances by a young player in a long time. No fear and absolutely awesome shot making in every sense of the word.
Since then though, results have been mixed. She started well with a solid quarterfinals effort at Wimbledon, but the North American hardcourt season has not been kind. Her next year is going to be fascinating to watch. Will she continue to progress smoothly or will there be struggles? How will she keep improving her big game?
I have no clue, but give me some popcorn. I can’t wait to watch.
5) Are Halep and Wozniacki destined to be bridesmaids
Halep and Woz are arguably the best two defensive players on tour. The biggest knock against them is they don’t have the firepower to knock down the final hurdle. And that continues to be their themes this year.
Woz: 0-6 in finals this year!?
Halep: Lost set and break lead in French Open final. Has been 1 match win away from the number one ranking multiple times, but unable to take it. #Ouch
Will either Simona or Caroline be able to win the big one at the US Open? Or find a way to take that number one ranking?
6) Soooo many different players could be number one
Speaking of the number one ranking, I don’t remember a time when so many players had the number one ranking in their sites. FIVE PLAYERS COULD HAVE ENDED THE LAST TOURNAMENT AS NUMBER ONE!?! YES, FIVE!
Pliskova, Halep, Kerber, Svitolina, & Wozniacki
And then Muguruza went and won the damn tournament to rise to number three in the rankings. Now, her hat is in the ring. Pliskova, Kerber, Woz, and Halep have quarters or more points to defend, especially with Pliskova and Kerber our past finalists. Things are going to get even more complicated in NY and through the Asia swing. Who knows who will be number one?
7) And sooo many players could win the US Open
That being said, even more players could win the US Open! Someone could completely Ostapenko things in NYC and take the last major. Hell, even Ostapenko could do it again. Will we get another 1st time champ? Or will Kerber or Venus recapture glory? Anyone who tells you they know is chock full of lies. I can’t wait to see what the big city has to offer.
So there’s my primer of the WTA summer. And crazily, I didn’t even mention two of the biggest figures coming back from maternity leave (Azarenka) and suspension/injury (Sharapova). The WTA summer certainly has set up a thrilling end of the season. Who will be number one? Who will cap their year off with a US Open title?
Stay tuned to the blog to find out.
Do you have any thoughts about the WTA season so far? Let me know in the comments below or on twitter @DrFsThoughts.
Enjoy the tennis!