Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Era of Roger/Serena

Roger Federer won his 4th Australian Open, and 16th grand slam title overall, after beating Andy Murray in dominant form, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6(13-11). Roger played great tennis in the semis vs Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and carried that form through to the finals. Murray just couldn't find any openings to break down Roger's game. And honestly, when Roger is playing his best (or close to his best), Murray's best just isn't gonna be good enough on the day. So with Rafa struggling with a knee injury, will this be Roger's year to win THE grand slam? We'll just have to see. One down, three to go.

Better luck next time other Andy, at least you didn't bawl your eyes out like last year's losing finalist.

The women's final ended with Serena Williams winning her 5th Australian Open title and 12th singles grand slam title (She also won her 11th doubles grand slam title with Ate Venus) by beating Justine Henin in 3 sets. Serena is slowly inching her way to the Steffi Graf/Martina Navratilova/Chris Evert group of Best Ever. She's gonna have to survive Justine's return from retirement to get close to the 22/18/18 grand slams that the 3 aforementioned legends have won.

Justine made an impressive comeback at Brisbane on the first week of January, where she lost a brilliant final to fellow Belgian Kim Clijsters. She then followed that up by making the Grand Slam final in only her 2nd tournament after more than a year off of tennis. She couldn't quite replicate Kim's run at the US Open (and Serena fortunately didn't have a line judge-related meltdown too), but with a more aggressive game and the same Allez-screaming, fist pumping, never-say-die attitude, Justine will probably add a few more grand slams to the 7 she already has.

Also, big props to:
1. The Chinese ladies Jie Zheng and Li na who both made it to the semifinals. This is the first time that two Chinese players (heck, two Asians) ever made it to the semifinals of a grand slam.
2. Croat Marin Cilic, who survived several 5 set matches against Juan Martin Del Potro and Andy Roddick to reach his first grand slam semifinal. Cilic is having a great year so far. He has played in two other tournaments besides the Australian Open, and won both of them.
3. Blonde Eastern Europeans - Maria Kirilenko, who followed up her upset win over the other Maria by making it all the way to her first grand slam quarterfinals, and Victoria Azarenka, who made her first Aussie Open quarterfinals and had a 6-4, 4-0 lead over Serena before succumbing to an avalanche of Serena's aces and winners.

*pictures courtesy of the Australian Open website/Getty Images

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