Tuesday, July 05, 2016

A quarter for your Wimbledon thoughts?

Before we speak of the thing we should speak not of, let's address Dominika Cibulkova. If she should happen to end her career without one Slam title, that would be bad. If she were another foot taller, she might have at least one Slam title, because what she doesn't have in stature, she makes up for in stature. If her dust-up with Agz Radwanska doesn't tell you that, then nothing will. And if she weren't in the same half as the machine otherwise known as Serena Williams, I'd give her a real shot at the final at Wimbledon.
But she is. And watching Serena take on Svetlana Kuznetsova, you remember: "Oh, yeah, the girl with more Slams than just about anyone in history? Oh, yeah. Her." Kuznetsova is no slouch. And it's not like she played badly. It's just that Serena leveled her in the second set after a tight first set, as though she went on automatic or something.
You wouldn't say the same about Venus Williams. She's not the 'automatic' type. She's the winner/double-fault/winner/winner/bad backhand/winner type. But her flashes of awesome at Wimbledon so far are showing up at the right times, when she's down and out. For the oldest woman in the draw, she is showing some indications that she might be the very same Venus Williams who has won this thing once or twice before. Or five. Whichever.
Which brings us to the thing we should speak not of, because Venus and Serena are in different halves of the draw. Both of them are two matches from the final. Should they both make the final, it will be the oldest woman in the draw up against the woman trying to tie Steffi Graf's Grand Slam tournament win. But we're not going to talk about it, because it's too good to be true and the stuff they make bad tennis movies out of, so we'll look at the quarterfinals and just that for now:

Serena Williams v. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova: Serena.
Cibulkova v. Elena Vesnina: Another sneaky one, that Vesnina. She beat the other other sneaky one, Ekaterina Makarova in another seesaw three-setter. I think you have to give the edge to the person who took Radwanska out, because Radwanska was playing pretty well here, and looked ready for another final run. I don't know how with that serve, but there it is. Or was.
Simona Halep v. Angelique Kerber: I don't know how Kerber wins matches, nay Slams without weapons, but she does. Halep has weapons, but no Slams. No earthly idea how this one's going to go, but guessing it will be the best of the four matches of the day.
Venus v. Yaroslava Shvedova: I just think that doubles players on grass tend to be a nuisance for doubles players. Venus will probably take it, but it will take a while, as her matches here have.

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