Tennis | Page 277 | The Popjustice Forum


Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by backstreetjoe, Oct 25, 2009.

  1. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    She was perfectly gracious in her speech at the end, but it was a bit of a weird hill to die on. Why bother arguing about a medical timeout for your opponent when the rules literally don't allow a player to continue if they are bleeding? It's a rule that exists across several sports. She'd have been told by the official pretty much immediately that the timeout had been called because of the bleeding and not because Emma had asked for a timeout.
  2. She didn’t die on a hill, she was using her newly freed time to express herself. She wasn’t interrupting play, nothing. It was the most important moment of her professional life. Besides, the US Open is not Wimbledon—the rules of decorum are different there.
  3. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    Let's not confuse "yelling at an official within clear earshot of your opponent" with "expressing yourself".

    Do I think Leylah is a terrible person for doing it? Of course not. She's a teenager who was in a crucial moment in the biggest moment of her professional life. But did she actually have a legitimate grievance? No. The official literally couldn't have done anything about the situation no matter how much she was being yelled at.

    Plenty of players use their opponent's timeout to keep themselves warmed up without feeling the need to vent at an official who can't do anything about the situation.
  4. MTOs happen so frequently now, especially on the women's side, you think players would've learned how to manage themselves if their opponent takes one.
    PopCrushed and londonrain like this.
  5. Yelling at an official seems to me an uncharitable way to characterize what was happening, but I was not on the court in earshot and regardless this is certainly not a hill that *I* wish to die on!
    slaybellz likes this.
  6. For context, Leylah was still talking to the supervisor after she lost the match. She prolonged the issue more than she should’ve in my opinion.
  7. Exactly. I'm not saying she was right but she redeemed herself in the end so why harp on about it? Athletes get frustrated, sometimes they yell, sometimes they break their racquets etc. Why does it have to be made into some big thing? I really hate the respectability politics of Tennis and how female players specifically are scrutinized for every false move.
    ALEX, Someboy and relby like this.
  8. Someboy

    Someboy Staff Member

    ‘Yelling at an official’?

    Hm. They were in the middle of a boisterous stadium, and if Leylah raised her voice, it was so she could be heard at all. Mary Jo Fernandez was sitting court side for ESPN, and she said she couldn’t hear what Leylah was saying, so it was hardly a Serena-esque moment of taking center stage and letting everyone in Ashe know what she’s thinking. For what’s it worth, Leylah’s complaint seemed to be the length of time it was taking to apply a bandaid, not that play stopped at a crucial moment. It was a five minute break at an important point, but it couldn’t have been prevented, and I don’t think it changed the outcome of the match. She just got caught up in the drama of the match, I’m surprised there’s been pages of this thread devoted to it.

    Emma played brilliantly. Clear-headed, aggressive, and determined. She gave her shots enough margin when she needed to, and let her arm fly at the right time. She seems to take pride in her game, which you love to see in a young player. I mentioned her game reminding me of a peak-Vika, but I’ve seen a few suggestions on Twitter of Li Na - I wonder if that’s more accurate, the fluidity of the strokes and controlled offense definitely reminiscent of Li. She was also, by far, the best prepared player for Leylah’s game, not afraid of the flat, lefty-angles coming her way, and relishing redirecting her pace at a different angle. I would have loved to watch a third set, maybe in the future they’ll get here again and it’ll happen.

    I really, really, really hope Emma has a good team around her for what’s about to happen. She’s barely played the tour, at all, and she’s going to have direct entry into every event for the next year with a target on her back. There will be veterans keen to knock her back, and we know how the media can feast on a ‘not living up to the hype’ narrative. Let’s hope she’s protected from that, but also that she’s able to deliver on tour, that she can be the thing people want her to be. I mean, she’s the youngest major winner since Maria, but Maria wasn’t an unknown qualifier, she was already ranked in the top twenty. We’re in uncharted territory. Of course, hope Leylah can rise to the pressure as well, even if her game leaves me wanting.

    Finally, Novak has an iconic smirk, not smile, but actually so does Medvedev, so there might be a lot of emotions on court tomorrow. (I thought the USTA President checking the girls’ smiles was kind of sweet in a grandfatherly way, because they have been smiling in an infectious way this whole week.)
    Alphableat, Mikal, Gabeee9292 and 6 others like this.
  9. MollieSwift21

    MollieSwift21 Staff Member

    A great final! Happy for Emma. Her return of serve is incredible. A dream like tournament and seems like the WTA is going to get another big named player with her.

    Strange to focus on Leylah being upset. First slam final plus being so young it can be hard to stay in the moment. A very minor footnote of the match.

    Also odd to bring up Coco too. She’s still so young. Her grand slam losses were to Svitolina, the winner of French open, Kerber on grass and Sloane playing what might have been her best match all year. I wouldn’t say she gets in her way at all. Sometimes she is playing unnecessary three setters but she wins them. Has been rising up nicely.
    ALEX, Someboy and slaybellz like this.
  10. As someone who's been on the professional circuit for as long as Leylah has, and with her years of maturity and wisdom, she should have had handled herself much more gracefully during the MTO especially given that she would have to have known that a MTO was mandatory given Emma's condition...

    Except, oh wait, this is a teenager playing at the highest levels of the game for the very first time in her life that we're talking about. She's allowed to be pressed that it takes three minutes for a trainer to put on a simple bandage and another two for Emma to sit there and recharge with a sports drink before break point in a very tense moment of the match while Leylah herself had to wait a bit before even being caught up with what was going on (it took two whole minutes before the umpire finally called the MTO oficially). And when she ends up losing the match in that very game where she had break point and some actual momentum, it's perfectly understandable that she would have a moment of sad, angry frustration. Anyone judging Leylah negatively for the ending of the match is weird.

    Regarding the rest of the match, I'm happy for Emma and she played brilliant, lights out tennis. A bit disappointed with the final though since Leylah never really got to 100%. She never found her serve, she was a step slow to shots she hadn't been slow to in the past, and some tired groundstrokes produced truly awful-looking errors. The two big mysteries for me this match is if Leylah would have the energy to make this a proper fight, and if Emma could hold her nerve and handle any adversity if things turned especially dramatic. In the few dramatic moments there were Emma held steady, and Leylah unfortunately didn't seem to have the energy to apply enough pressure (hard to do when you're serving below 50% for most of the match).

    Big props to Emma though, who can surely win many more titles if she can reproduce her level from this event.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2021
  11. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    The Li Na comparison isn’t surprising as Emma herself has said her tennis idols are Li Na and Simona Halep, who are from her mother’s country of origin and her father’s country of origin respectively.

    It was really lovely to see two mixed-race teenagers contesting a Slam final. While the very top of the men’s game is very white these days (although hopefully Felix is on the cusp of changing that), it’s great to see the women’s game continuing to show diversity in every sense.
    Gabeee9292 likes this.
  12. 250K likes in less than an hour... MPG confirmed!

  13. I'm not sure how much is played between now and the Australian Open. But Emma has a great chance to get into the Top 10 rankings wise by Wimbledon as she basically has no high value ranking points to defend until Wimbledon.
  14. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    Indian Wells is coming up. That’s another opportunity to pick up a big chunk of points.
    Martyn likes this.
  15. I was looking today at why the US Open didn't have line judges again this year. And I saw Djokovic had said they should be replaced by Hawk Eye everywhere.

    Then remembered he likes to break things and bat balls at people (accidentally) so it would probably help him to not default again.
    PopCrushed and londonrain like this.
  16. Don't blow it now Daniil....
  17. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    Djokovic failing to break Medvedev even once in two and a half sets is a development I didn't see coming.
  18. Not straight sets dd
    ALEX and slaybellz like this.
  19. londonrain

    londonrain Staff Member

    I hadn't realised that Djokovic has actually lost more US Open finals than he's won (he's lost five and won three). Somehow I'd got it into my head that he'd won more of them.

    He's about to lose a sixth unless something radically changes in the next few minutes!
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