2013 Tennis Wish List

Five wishes for the 2013 tennis season:

1. Rafael Nadal back on the tennis court at full strength. It’s been a long five months since Nadal was ousted in the second round of Wimbledon by 100th-ranked Lukas Rosol. It’s not that the Olympics, the US Open, and the ATP World Tour Finals lacked drama or excitement without the World No. 4, but the ATP is always better when Nadal’s healthy and present at the big events. The optimist in me also hopes we’ll see Robin Soderling back on court in 2013.

2. A youngster to step up and challenge the top players. There have been flashes of promise from a few young players recently, including Milos Raonic, Ryan Harrison, Bernard Tomic, Grigor Dimitrov, and Jerzy Janowicz, but they have yet to prove to be a consistent threat to the Big Four. It would be nice to see any of those players (or the second tier of players like Tsonga, Berdych, and del Potro) break up the Big Four monopoly on Slams and larger ATP events.

3. Maria Sharapova to get past her mental block against Serena Williams. Right now, it’s fair to say Williams is a better player than Sharapova. But Sharapova seems to play her meekest tennis against the World No. 3. Williams is 9-0 against Sharapova since 2004, and Sharapova hasn’t even taken a set against Williams since 2008. Will 2013 be the year Sharapova finds it within herself to challenge the American?

4. No more discussion on equal pay at Slams, and no more ATP players bashing the WTA. Whether Janko Tipsarevic, Gilles Simon, or Sergiy Stakhovsky like it or not, equal pay for women at Slams is here to stay. Stakhovsky and Simon should focus on more productive issues in their roles on the ATP Council, such as increasing prize money for lower-ranked players who lose in early rounds of tournaments.

5. Tomic to grow up. I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m sick of hearing about whatever the latest Tomic scandal is. Whether it’s having an outburst at a reporter at the US Open, getting in trouble with the law for “hooning,” or causing a disturbance by engaging in naked rooftop wrestling, it would just be nice to hear about Tomic’s on-court progress instead of that other stuff. He’s not a teenager anymore. It’s time to grow up.

What are your tennis wishes for 2013?

Amy can be spotted on a tennis court in the Philadelphia area, shanking backhand volleys.

8 Responses

  1. Fernando
    Fernando November 24, 2012 at 9:15 am |

    Fernando says there is one wish for 2013. The glorious, Humble Bull, fit, primed and ready, shows Djoker the meaning of intestinal fortitude, pounds high to Maestro’s backhand and steamrolls over New Fang.

    Fernando is very happy with what he sees in Malloroca,

    I am Fernando @vivafernando

    1. Master Ace
      Master Ace December 1, 2012 at 9:44 pm |

      Do not tell me that I followed you here. LOL!

  2. Matt V
    Matt V November 25, 2012 at 6:21 pm |

    Asides obviously wanting Nadal back to his best and Djokovic dominating most of the year (fanboy much?), here is my list:

    1. Dolgo to get going – I really love his game and miss the Santoro like wizardry in tennis. It would be nice if he got serious and started winning, without changing his quirky personality (and game) significantly.

    2. Speaking of getting serious – when is Gulbis going to do a Safin and go win something big? I know he’s a charming headcase but I still think he’s due for a big push, it would be a shame if he didn’t.

    3. The Return of the Australian Open Semi version of Verdasco – after TheForhand Gonzales retired we are left without a truly thundering, face-melting forehand man that plays with consistency. After his brief flirtation with godly levels of tennis, Verdasco has mostly reverted to losing meekly while ranting. Shame.

    4. I want the people, and media, of 2013 to STOP ushering players into retirement. The age for stopping tennis has only been getting higher, folks, not lower. Accept it. Older tennis players should not retire because they are old, and unless a player openly states he will no longer deal with injuries, neither will the injuries.

    5. 2013 to be a good year for come-backers, also due to point 4. Haas – keep going. Davydenko, come back….Baker, rock on….you get it….

  3. Michael
    Michael November 28, 2012 at 11:20 pm |

    Have an America male win a slam.

  4. Master Ace
    Master Ace December 1, 2012 at 9:47 pm |

    1. Agree
    2. Disagree – Top 4 too good
    3. Disagree except on red clay – Serena still remember a 17 yr old player keeping her from winning Wimbledon in 3 consecutive years
    4. Disagree – Watch a media member asked a question at AO
    5. Agree

    P.S. – Big 10 championship is a big joke as Wisconsin is destroying Nebraska

  5. MJ
    MJ December 2, 2012 at 11:06 pm |

    Can’t resist reacting to number 4 above, which I have heard more than a few tennis scribes (usually female) make. If something is unjust or wrong, it’s no defense of that practice to say “like it or not” it’s here to stay. “Gee, Mr. Lincoln, we have always had slavery, like it or not it’s here to stay.” Now, of course this is an issue of an entirely different magnitude and I don’t suggest we equate the two, but the fact remains that the “what’s done is done” argument is specious, really a non-argument. Meanwhile, Sarkohsky(sp?)can legitimately argue as he has, that to get to the top on the men’s tour these days you need a big (and expensive) team. You do not need me to tell you about all the support staff that Federer and the big four have and need for them to sustain their level, something that has become crucial in the last few years. Becoming a Top-10 or 20 player is a very expensive proposition and without reaching a certain threshold in earnings in may be impossible. Without going in detail, the ATP subsidizes the WTA in shared tournaments – no way could the women have the economic might to get equal pay without the ATP carrying the load in terms of ticket sales and TV ratings – that is just a simple fact. The only justification is that equal pay promotes the women’s game and gives more women incentive to pursue professional tennis; it’s a form of affirmative action which I for one think is misguided. This discussion is in no way going to end because of your “that’s the way it is” argument; the economics are so clear that more ATP players will speak up. You should get your arguments ready because more fans will realize that maybe we cannot have your worthwhile goal of #2 without a hard re-look at #3. ATP forever!!

  6. MJ
    MJ December 2, 2012 at 11:08 pm |

    whoops, meant hard look at #4 in the last sentence above. BTW, I do like watching women’s tennis.

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