Serena Slammed

serena fistA funny thing happened on Serena’s way to the calendar year Grand Slam at the US Open, a little regarded Italian, Roberta Vinci pulled off one of the largest upsets in recent tennis history. Do you care?

300-1 Odds

Because she was such a longshot, had you bet $100 on that outcome, you would have won $30,000! When they asked Vinci after the match what she thought she had to do to win that match the morning she woke up, she said, “No. I did not think about me winning. No chance. I just say ‘It is the semi-finals, just go out and enjoy yourself.”

During the final exciting moments of the upset, I was on my feet cheering every critical point the feisty Italian won; and DeDe asked, “Don’t you want the American to win?” And even though I am usually a chauvinistic American, rooting for almost anyone from the USA, I said, “No, I just don’t like Serena and want to see her lose.”

Vinci: “I’m Sorry.”

The Italian said after the match to the audience, “I’m sorry for the American people, for Serena, and for the tournament; but today is MY day!”

I was not sorry. I just do not like the way that Serena acts on the court … the intentional screeches (you notice how toned down she was vs. her sister the match before?) … the waving the fist at her opponents. And, I really do not think she is a nice person.

Djokovic Matured

I used to feel the same way about the chest pumping Novak Djokovic, but I really think he has matured dramatically and is now a real credit to the game of tennis.

Do you care that Serena got slammed?

And, can the Fed keep up his incredible play and win the men’s finals on Sunday? I think he has much better than a 300-1 shot at it!

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24 thoughts on “Serena Slammed

  1. watching Vinci reminds me of playing Willie Hoffman. They slice and dice you into frustration and take you out of your game. I hope she wins it all.

    Jeff – good comparison. after the match, she said her “game plan” was to “hit the ball into the court and run, run, run!” george

  2. What I find interesting is Serena is almost always bothered by any woman that can play a different style. All the kids in the past 15 years or so are taught severe grips and endless topspin cross court rallies. The girls that give her trouble are the girls that can vary spin ,height of shot and pace. The examples Watson,Mattek-Sands and of course Vinci.
    It’s GREAT to see someone play an all- court game once again,perhaps some other players will take the hint. I too find Serena a bit too animated for my tastes,but to be fair that’s true most of the players today. Remember Arthur Ashe and Stan Smith?

    Ron – when the subject of today’s players actions comes up at Newk’s camp, the Australian legends almost all give them thumbs down. thanks, george

  3. I think Serena choked. She would never admit it of course 40 unforced errors!

    Bill – they asked her that in her VERY Brief post match interview and she claimed she “feels no pressure”. see you soon. george

  4. I have to say I agree. Pundits call Serena’s behavior intense. I call it rude. Even though she is much toned down from her early days, I find the shouting and fist shaking unsportsmanlike. I still find I have to turn down the volume when watching most women’s matches because of all the screeching and grunting. It’s my pet peeve.

    Bob – the last time i watched Sharapova vs Azarenka, i had to hit the Mute button! george

  5. Agree completely on Serena — her behavior is brutish and she carefully chooses her times to be gracious, although i was surprised how well she behaved in the post-match press conference this time. Still…..

    I think Novak will win, but Roger is my emotional favorite. His play is constantly adapting to his age, his opponents, the surface, weather and the crowd. An unusually talented athlete. I presume you saw him serve an apple off a sportscaster’s head a couple of years back? He may have eclipsed Rod Laver as the greatest of all time. Laver still up there because of his humanity and skill.

    Sheldon – I believe Serena’s post match comments are “scripted” and coached by her handlers. On Roger, me too! thanks, george

  6. George you hit the nail on the head with Serena she acts like she should win every point. She screams like a lunatic but not against her sister as you pointed out. Judy likes Serena and always throws that American line at me like Dede.
    I do like Venus as I feel she acts very different than her sister. The other thing that bothers me about Serena is her outfits. If I had a booty that large I would wear something that would try to cover it up not expose it more. She is quite amazing how she can move for her size? She also has the best serve of any women in tennis history. Its just her actions that bug me.
    Roger Federer is still the class act of all tennis players! Go Fed!!

    Phil – she does have a very ample body! See you soon. george

  7. I agree with your comments about Serena. To say that her attitude is better than it used to be is not much. Her performance on and off the court is bad for the game. It’s excusable for a rising star in their teens but not at this stage of a career.

  8. I am not a big Serena fan but its not the fist pumping or noise she makes. ( I can’t say that because I am a big Azarenka fan. I know, Azarenka has done some questionable things also but Go figure. ) I’ve read Serena has a great killer instinct. I disagree. Serena is so much better then the other players it is hard for her to keep the killer instinct. She also did feel the pressure out there. She would not be playing tennis now if she wasn’t trying to prove she is the best of all time. I am sorry Serena lost but it was nice to see a classy Vinci. Good Luck to her.

    Womans tennis has changed so much. It was not that long ago the same women were getting to the final each week. (mens tennis now? 🙂 The depth of womens tennis is great to see.

    As far as the mens final we are going to see two of the very best of all time playing near their best in a major final. It cannot get better then that. I hope it gets the TV ratings it deserves and is a high quality match.

    The pressure is on Djokovic. I believe he is looking to accumulate as many majors as possible to put himself in the discussion for greatest. If he can win Sunday and win another 4-5 majors in the next 2-3 yrs he is right in the discussion. If he loses tomorrow its a triple whammy. Fed has another major putting himself further ahead,
    Djokovic has lost another final which I am sure some writers will be critical of and he has further to go to hit the 14 or 15 majors to get himself into the goat conversation.

    Randy Beerman

    Randy – I am psyched for the Men’s final… and for Fed! thanks, george

  9. And somewhere, in a little hamlet not far from Las Vegas, a tall, pretty, athletic woman with a slight German accent lets go a sigh and an almost imperceptible smirk…. as she contemplates what could have been, but will never be.

    Marty – that too was one of the reasons i was happy she lost! (and this has to be your shortest — and best — comment ever!!!) george

  10. Marty, beautiful stuff. How can they say Serena is a great role model when she breaks her racquet after losing a set and then tries to intimidate her opponent by screaming on every point during and right after. The ironic part is the game after she lost four straight points. Hopefully , some young player coming up noticed that’s not what you need to do to win. I loved the game that she got broke on where she was up 30-15 , Vinci blocks back a return off a big serve and Serena couldn’t believe t came back so fast. Then Vinci did it again the next point. Then finally Serena gets a first serve called out on shot spot and throws in a double to lose the game. The tennis gods where definitely smiling on Vinci. Any chance a young American female will be saying to herself maybe I should learn to play like Vinci? I know they are in Italy. Serena is a great player, I wish somebody would tell her to cut out the screaming act and become a true role model.

    Larry – and, outlaw the loud grunting! thanks, george

  11. I totally dislike Serena and her mouth as for the outfits she should wear something that fits her.
    I have to admit I was at the open last week and she is definitely in better shape than she looks on tv they do say it puts 10 pounds on people.
    So glad Vinci won I just need Federer to win also
    as you say George Joko used to be obnoxious but has learned to be more polite

    Gail – Thanks. see you soon! george

  12. I think Serena generates very strong emotions among tennis fans and it always surprises me how strong the negative comments run. Yes, she is passionate and yes, she screams and pumps her fists, but most pros overcelebrate and pump their fists and yell “come on!” when they hit a winner, and often stare at their opponent as they do so. Americans love football where football players prance around doing elaborate dances every time they make a tackle like they saved the world from destruction (isn’t that their job?). Compared to them Serena is mild. She is far and away the greatest female tennis player ever (sorry, Stephie – even you) and I do not think she deserves the ire that she endures.

    For the record, I hate the screeching, too, but she is not unique in the WTA. I, too, think she should respect ALL opponents the way she does her sister. Then again, she has had to endure some pretty blatant examples of lack of respect herself (eg Indian Wells). Is she my favorite human being on the tour? No. Do I hope she loses her opportunity to make history because of it? Also no. She probably lost her bid for history more for the reasons cited by Ron & Randy above: tough to keep killer instinct and the magic of changeup – look at Rafa and Fognini!

    Would that EVERYONE in professional tennis take a lesson from the legends on decorum.

    Geoff – but i think they should also stop the NFL guys from dancing and prancing after just making one tackle. thanks, george

  13. I remember hating and loving Mr. Nastase 🙂

    As to Sarena, a bit like watching nascar for the crashes….
    I dont agree with it, but her bad girl behaviour does make for good enterainment.
    I try to look at it in that light.
    We have been “worried” for years that bad boy and bad girl tennis would become the norm….it hasnt though 🙂
    I believe the majority of us are intrinsically good anf respectful of others.
    Life would be boring if we all were the same 🙂

    Marc – You mean it would be dull if everyone was nice, everyone was honest, and friendly?! thanks, george

  14. I never watch Serena play until she has lost. I tape everything so I can then go back and watch her lose. To me she is the most obnoxious great player the game has ever seen.
    I am always delighted when she loses and have never pulled for her. Sad to say…..

    Paul – put her in the same group as Nastase, Johnny Mac, and Connors. george

  15. George, I agree with Geoff totally. When I play against any family member, I tone it down, and have seen other people do the same. As far as Serena and her looks and body, I find that more enjoyable than the flat chested women who have no indication of a female body, and wear no makeup, and have totally male hair styles.
    As far as that pretty women from Las Vegas, Serena and her family had to put up with a lot of hate in their lives, from just about every one. Which one us really know how we would act in their place.
    Anthony Rasile

    Anthony – I find her body/build amazing! thanks, george

  16. I have to agree with the great majority who have rooted against Serena, for her snarling and arrogance, beginning with her intimidation of the lines person who called a foot fault on her at the U.S. Open some years ago. Having said that, her competitive ability to fight back from the brink of defeat that she has often shown, is remarkable. By contrast, her sister Venus sportsmanlike attitude and graciousness has always been admirable. I’m sure had we learned our tennis on the broken glass hard courts of Compton, California as those sisters did, we might have some kind of residual attitude. I do have to say, though, that Serena’s post match comments gave full credit to Roberta Vinci and her “want it” desire. (I give Serena credit for these remarks, not believing these words were put into her mouth by her handlers.) It was interesting to hear that there is only one year difference in age between Arthur Ashe and Richard Williams, Serena and Venus’, father and early coach. In the category of of on-court insufferable attitudes, I’d place John McEnroe at the top, closely followed by Ilie Nastase, then Jimmy Connors and Serena.

    As to the great upcoming Joker/Fed match, I hope the Fed can come through. It’s a tough order but Roger is coming into the match fresh and Roger’s shot making, consistency, confidence and controlled aggressive play look in peak form – if he can only bring his A+ game through one more match. Roger is a treasure to watch because he is so versatile and fluid and brings creative variety to match his love of the game. Novak is so fast and flexible, though, and so able to consistently recover from aggressive shots into the corners to make unbelievable counter punch winners.

    Dag – thanks for your thoughtful comments. george

  17. George cannot agree with you more and FYI

    today Jeff Macie was my dubs partner…no complaints today

    Willy – all depends which side of the net you are on! george

  18. Geoff, about the football players my only comment is John Riggins! Scored the most amazing touchdown run in the Super Bowl against the Dolphins to break open the game.Simply dropped the ball in the end zone and went to take his place on the bench!!! You’re a pro … act like you are supposed to know how to do this.

  19. Didn’t watch the match. I don’t watch any of Serena’s matches. Serena said “she played out of her mind” meaning if her opponent hadn’t played at a far higher level than her REAL ability she wouldn’t have had a chance. That’s Serena’s way of complimenting an opponent. Usually she doesn’t even acknowledge she HAS an opponent! Following a typical Serena match she only talks about herself. Either “I was tight” or “I wasn’t at my best today.” Never an acknowledgement if her opponent played well. Contrast that with Fed’s comments about Wawrinka. Fed said he was really happy for Stan at the French and that Stan had played a great match against him there.

    Joel, yes she is a prime example of The Me Generation! Thanks, george

  20. Serena looks clumsy. If you whack the ball at her she is fine but if you jerk her around she is helpless and gets depressed. I cannot help but think that Steffi with her incredible foot speed, great slice backhand and ferocious forehand would have handled Serena with ease.

    Bill, i too am surprised how she looks bad and stumbles around going for several shots . tks, george

  21. Hi George,

    Most fervent purist tennis players would root for Vinci and when you see Serena’s record there is no wonder why.

    Remember when Serena was playing doubles at Wimbledon and her sister was laughing at her when she couldn’t pick up a ball? Apparently that was a ‘virus infection’. Have you ever heard of a virus infection affecting your sensibility? I spoke to someone at the court-side and they reported that she seemed happy and high on something illegal!…. And then there are the muscles- bigger than Nadal’s. If you try to Google Serena and blood tests you won’t find any answers…

    Todd – I remember watching that weird display… and no real answers followed. george

  22. Like most of the comments, I too was not disappointed Serena lost. In fact, the absolute pure joy that Vinci showed was unlike anything I have seen. She admitted she had no illusion that she was going to win. ..but she did. If Serena had won, it would have felt like a coronation. Vince’s victory was why we play the game.

    Roy, and then when we watched the ceremony after the finals, both women were happy for each other! george

  23. I’m not a Serena fan because of her attitudes–the me and the you.I have never seen one of her matches, only bits and pieces and nothing seemed to have change until I saw some bits and pieces of this match where the baseline bully was being yanked around by an all courter. Amazing !! The unforced errors. Amazing !! It’s a shame loosing out on a once in a lifetime record–but, there’s always next year. Back to the drawing board ??

    Dick – i think her time is passed for the Grand Slam. thanks, george

  24. I was talking to a British TV sports presenter once, a very experienced lady, & I asked her who was the most difficult person she had ever interviewed – that’s easy, she replied, Serena Williams, who was, she said, incredibly rude.
    Compare & contrast the behaviour & attitude of Heather Watson who almost spoilt the party at Wimbledon, & the 2 Italian ladies who contested yesterday’s Final. What a shame for Vinci that she didn’t have the benefit of the usual 48 hour break after the Semis, it might not have changed the result but it certainly spoilt the quality of the match as she clearly ran out of steam.
    Why is it that the US Open always struggles with its scheduling ? Wimbledon copes with the vagaries of our climate except on Centre Court, a later start time, 5 Sets for Men’s Doubles, no final Set tie break in any match (remember Federer v Roddick & Isner v Mahut), no play on the middle Sunday & no night matches !
    Best wishes from across the pond

    Howard, maybe the new roof will help with scheduling. thanks, george

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