Perhaps young Caroline Wozniacki (above), starlet, media darling and tennis prodigy ‘realized’ is too young to know or has never had the time to sit around and watch her sport or to actually read a book about it. So let’s make clear for her and anyone else in need of the lesson. Wimbledon is officially called “The Championships at Wimbledon” for very good reason. Because they are. Historically, the Wimbledon winner is considered the year’s best player–the champion of tennis. There are several rationales for that. It is the oldest and most well established major, on the most beautiful, pristine courts under the sun, under the watchful eye of the royal familly in their royal box, with all of their royal rules of etiquette and dress, and before the days when the questionable mechanics of a computer tallied who had gained the most points and who defended the least points, and this one is #1 even if they lose and this other one is #2 even if they win.
Kudos to the All England Club for doing the right thing by Serena and Venus Williams, and for seeding them well above their WTA rankings. In fact, kudos to the All England Club for always seeding according to their view of who should be where, and not the wretched, skewed rankings of the WTA and ATP. This year on the men’s side, true to form, the All England Club did right by seeding Berdych before Ferrer and Roddick before Monfils, going with more tired and true grass court players, paying homage to finalists over guys who have never done much on grass.
When it came to the top of the women’s draw, the club had its hands tied. Caroline Wozniacki, one of the worst world #1’s ever on the female side, was awarded the top seed among the ladies, despite her early exit from Roland Garros in meek fashion, and without playing any tuneups on grass. If not for the terrible state of the women’s game, we are dead certain that heavy consideration would have been given to someone else for the top spot. With Clijsters withdrawing, and with her lack of big time success at Wimbledon, we doubt she’d have gotten the nod even if she were in the mix. But would anyone in the world doubt that Clijsters, healthy, would have a lot better shot here than Wozniacki, who decided to play indoors last week at e-Bok in Copenhagen, on a cushy indoor track, rather than play on grass?
In fact, is there anyone out there right now who cares to stand up for Wozniacki and vouch for her chances at Wimbledon? We’d bet Zvonareva, the Wimbledon and US runners-up, garnered a lot of consideration for the top seed, and that she’d have definitely gotten that slot had she won Wimbledon last year. On this page, we delight in few things more than railing Jelena Jankovic, also one of the worst #1’s ever, and with very little to show for it. While there are tons of similarities in their games, like hitting the forehand off the backfoot, weak serving, and passing on overheads, as well as, of course, the awful volleying, Jankovic does have 5 major semi-finals to her credit, and one major final. Wozniacki, while younger, has 1 Australian Open semi on the books, as well as the 2009 US Open final in which she was taken out to the woodshed by Clijsters.
We thought Wozniacki had a great shot down under this year on the slow, awful Plexicushion, and in that heat that a pusher like her should be well ready for. And then Na Li pounnded her. We wrote in this space that it could be a now or never type of deal for Wozniacki. With her inscrutably picked schedule and dumb camp, led by her Polish ex-pro soccer playing dad, we are leaning toward never at this point. And we don’t like her attitude at all, especially after catching her self aggrandizing comments after e-Bok last week.
“I’m so happy to win this tournament in my home country – it’s a special feeling,” Wozniacki said afterwards. “This is my 17th title and last time I played here I had eight titles, so I’ve more than doubled that – it’s a good feeling. The last three matches my game has been at a very high level and I’m looking forward to going to London, and practicing and preparing for Wimbledon.”
She’s counting second rate trophies. Her priorities are mixed up. As we’ve said here, 3 tournaments on green clay? This year? Does she not know that red and green clay play very differently? Obviously the 3 titles she took on the green clay did nothing for her in her matchup with Hantuchova in France in which she won 4 games. Just like playing on soft hards in June doesn’t get one ready for Wimbledon.
Hopefully the right players get back to the right spots in the women’s game because this is almost unwatchable. As much as we might fault Sharapova for her lack of sound fundamentals, she has power and toughness, as well as tremendous competitive spirit. We find Wozniacki lacking in all of those areas.
We’d be very surprised if she does anything to bolster her resume at SW-19. The green clay legends tour someday? Maybe.
Crack (https://crackbillionair.wordpress.com, www.crackbillionair.com)