Thursday, February 01, 2018

AO 2018 Attitudimeter: No One's Playing Down Unduh Anymoor!

There were a lot of questions going into the Australian Open. What will the women do without Serena? Will someone finally challenge Roger and Rafa? How much sleep do I really need to function daily?
It turns out that, as with every other Australian Open, you are left with even more questions: Kyle Edmund? We're still insisting on playing this tournament in conditions that eggs cannot survive? Why does it seem as though all the majority of young white American tennis players seem to like a little MAGA in their coffee?
Welp, it's time to ramp up the ol' Attitudimeter! First reading of 2018!

Who's Up

Simona Halep: Now, I never thought there would come a day when I would be sitting up in my bed at 4 a.m. (maybe it was 5?) staring wide-eyed at my laptop screen watching a women's final between Caroline Wozniacki and Simona Halep and kinda be sorta wouldn't-mind-too-bad-if-she-won rooting for ... Halep? Any regular readers know that I beat on Halep regularly over the on-court coaching crutch. I thought it might make her unable to stand on her own when she needed to. And look, I will build, maintain regularly and die on the hill that this policy is sexist AF and a mental crutch for a game that is 99.8794532 percent mental. But Halep showed in this tournament that she can figure it out and even produce great tennis under pressure -- because she had to do it many times against many comers. And even though she lost in the end, it wasn't like she gave it away, or choked. She played her best down to the last ball, and it's hard to believe she's going to make it out of 2018 without a Slam. She ready, yall:

Literally just wiped the smile off her own face.
Caroline Wozniacki: Well, we saw this coming, didn't we? Wozniacki has been threatening to come get her Slam for a solid year at this point, and between the stronger serve and transitioning out of a purely defensive game to become one of the better ball strikers the tour has right now -- well, it's a lot.

Roger Federer: Or, as he's known on the tour, Gramps. Federer, you'll recall, said at the beginning of the tournament that he's 36, and therefore too old to be a Slam favorite. Right. It was hard to catch a Fed match this tournament because he was always playing in the middle of the night (East Coast time) and was also done with his matches as though his daily calendar was packed. He didn't lose any sets until the final. (Which, OK. It's suspect that they closed the roof for the men's match while the women's final was played in sweltering heat. Like all of a sudden it just got hot out there. What?!?)

Angelique Kerber: It looks like the WTA Tour in 2018 is about to be lit is all I have to say about that.

Marin Cilic: Listen, it was a big deal to pick up two sets off of Federer in his current state.

Who's Down:

Venus Williams: This 2017 finalist lost in the first round this year, meaning she's now down in the rankings by about 75 million points. (Fact check: She only dropped from fifth to eighth because no one else above did anything at the Australian in 2017. )

Venus = still OG

Rafael Nadal: The Aussie Open draw gods gave Rafa some extra love this tournament, with scarcely a real challenge until Marin Cilic, and it was a combo of his opponent and an injury that kept him from finishing. The good news is that the injury is short term, which means the next question is: Will Fed sit for the French or challenge Nadal for No. once?

The USTA: I got some problems with the way it handled this Tennys Sandren situation, but we gonna need a whole new post for that one.

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