Archive for January, 2015

And Serena Makes It 19 Slams
Takes Final 6-3, 7-6 (7) Over Sharapova

Well, my favorite tennis player does it again.  Serena Williams completely outclassed Maria Sharapova in the final of the Australian Open to claim her 19th major title and go past the 18 major titles of Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert.  Serena won the Australian Open 6-3, 7-6 (7-5).  The only tennis player in the modern era (open era) to have more major titles than Serena is Steffi Graf with 22.  Margaret Court has 24 major titles.

Let me make it very clear.  I think that Steffi Graf was a world class tennis player and probably one of the best women’s tennis stars of all time.  But I would sincerely have to put an asterisk next to her 22 titles due to the fact that a deranged Steffi Graf fan stabbed Monica Seles and took her out of professional tennis.  The sad thing is that I am sure that Steffi wishes that the attack on Monica Seles had never happened.  The fact that the deranged idiot that stabbed Monica Seles got off without any jail time or without being committed to a mental institution is mind boggling to me.  But to be completely honest, I feel that if Monica Seles had never been attacked that Steffi would not have won 22 majors – a number of those wins would have gone to Monica.  From the time Seles was stabbed in early 1993 through 1996, Steffi Graf won 10 major titles.  It is certainly not inconceivable that Monica Seles could have won half of those tournaments if she had not been attacked.  Look at the numbers.  Graf was 22-9 in major finals.  Monica Seles was 9-4.

Let’s turn to Margaret Court.  She has 24 major titles.  Quite remarkable.  She won the French Open 5 times.  She won Wimbledon 3 times.  She won the U.S. Open 5 times.  She won the Australian Open 11 times.  However, let’s look at one thing in particular.  Out of her 11 Australian Open wins, 7 of them were before the Open Era.  Of her other 13 wins, 6 of them were before the Open Era.  So out of her 24 titles 11 were after the Open Era began in 1968.  The truth is that many women players did not compete in Australia before the Open Era.  Since professional players could not compete, they did not travel to Australia and most amateurs could not afford to travel to Australia to compete.  So to me, I think the total of 24 should have an asterisk next to it.

In any event, the fact that Serena is at 19 major wins at the age of 33 is mind boggling.  She is an amazing athlete and who knows how many major titles she will end up with.  Only time will tell.

I’m just thrilled that I have had the privilege of being present at tournaments and Washington Kastles matches where Serena Williams played.  Seeing Serena in person is an experience that I have savored over the years.  I first saw Serena play in person at the 2006 US Open and also at the 2009 US Open.  I saw her play for the Kastles at every home match she played from 2008 on.

Next major is the French Open in May.  Hopefully Serena can make it three French Open titles and major number 20.


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I’m Finally Back and Posting Again

I have been bad and not posted in quite a while.  Of course, right now it’s the start of the tennis season and I have been constantly watching what’s been going on “Down Under” during the Australian Open.

I was a little surprised when the Williams sisters withdrew from the Womens Doubles before it even started.  But with Venus getting all the way to the quarter finals and Serena getting ready to play Maria Sharapova (yet again) in the Womens Final I can see why they did not play doubles.  It was great to see the “Kastles Sisters” doing so well.

The other joy of the Australian Open is the wild (but not unexpected) success of Martina Hingis and Leander Paes in the Mixed Doubles tournament.  All of us diehard Kastles fans that have a constant dialog going with the Kastles players have been after Lea and Martina to play mixed doubles on tour.

They finally listened to us and have raced into the finals in Melbourne.

We’ll see if Serena can win major number 19 and if Martina and Lea can grab the Mixed together.

Leander and Martina

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