Monday, October 13, 2008

Tired yet?

I don't often suggest this to players (especially not women players, given the lack of depth), but really, Jelena Jankovic, take a week off. Or three.
Jankovic's run this fall has been impressive. She's been great all year, actually. But, who wants to bet that by the year-end championship, she'll have nothing left?
A better question: Who wants to guess how many tournaments Jankovic has played this year? And compare it, to say, Serena Williams?
Here's someone who does what no one else does -- play a full schedule -- and yet comes up empty at every Slam. It's almost not fair, but part of being a consistent pro has to do with taking care of yourself, pacing yourself. If Jankovic has a deep run this week in Zurich, that'll give her about two weeks to recover from playing nonstop for a month.
The word is not "cast". It's "balance". We've seen the opposite happen (ahemVenusWilliamsahem) where certain players take weeks off at a time, then falter in early rounds. Even Williams, though, manages a Grand Slam with her scheduling. It's next to impossible for Jankovic to play every tournament, and still be tough enough to win a major. Kudos to her coaches and mom for making her the world's best. Now they just have to make sure she can stay that way for a long time.
No takers on how many tournaments she and Williams have played this year? No cheating. I already did that.


TopSpin said...

yeah she did that last year as well and as I recall came unstuck at the end of the year - theres something quite obsessive about her quest for the #1 ranking, nothing wrong with that (she's the only one taking advantage of the current void in womens tennis), but she seriously needs to revise her scheduling. Oh and I'm guessing she's played around twice as much as Venus, although I'm probably way off the mark!

van said...

Hey Naf, what's up? I think I saw somewhere that Jelena is playing her 21st this week. I know, that's cheating, but I'll guess on Venus: I'm going with 12.

You're right, though: Jelena is wearing herself out, but she does deserve credit for getting out there and playing and fighting tooth and nail for that top spot.

Naf said...

Yo! No cheating allowed, Van! I was actually referring to Serena Williams, but Venus is probably a better example. You're both correct, either way.
This week is Venus' 13th tournament. Serena's at 12. And as for Jankovic ... yep, 21. Yikes.