Throw Up the Deuce

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Viewpoint

Ana Ivanovic and the rest of her generation cannot be compared to Maria Sharapova. For right now, at least. Sharapova is obviously the best player born after 1982. She is at least 5 years junior to any other player that has a real chance of beating her at her best.  Her mental toughness may already be the best in the game. Ivanovic is compared to Sharapova in more ways than one but tennis-wise she can’t hold up to Maria. Look at their first grand slam finals. Maria was a 17 year-old girl taking on the dominant player on tour, Serena Williams, on the game’s biggest stage, Centre Court. This girl played with no fear and physically overpowered the six time grand slam champion to win in straight sets 6-1, 6-4. Ana Ivanovic was 19, an adult. Ana was up against the best player in the world on clay and two time defending champion, Justine Henin. Ivanovic was so overcome by the moment she could not even toss the ball. She seemed just happy to be there and happy to win her three games. Ana’s next grand slam final, against Maria at the 2008 Australian Open, was more promising but she still couldn’t get it done. She has the game but she just isn’t there yet. Ana is constantly compared to Maria because she is the next best thing of their generation. As for the rest, they can hardly be compared to Ana. Nicole Vaidisova, whom many thought would soon emerge as the next huge star, is fading fast. Granted, she is two years younger than Sharapova and Ivanovic. Anna Chakvetadze just doesn’t have a weapon and the wrong head on her shoulders not to have one. The generation of 1987/88 is just not producing as many great players as many thought it would. Perhaps it will be the players from 1990/91 to produce the games next big thing.  However, there is still time for the  ’87 girls to step it up.

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