Since the Golden Globes and opening day of the Australian Open are both happening tonight, why not compare the women’s draw to some of the best movie nominations for the Golden Globes? By now you’ve read or thought about almost every angle of the draw so let’s lighten it up a bit. As an added bonus, I’m going to add a little free association that has absolutely nothing to do with movies at the end of each quarter writeup. Those free association questions will be: How do you summarize the quarter? What name jumps out? Who will win? And who will disappoint?
First Quarter: 50/50
Yes, there was a movie called 50/50 (I forgot about it). It is nominated for Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical. Interesting to think there could be a movie about cancer in a comedy/musical category.
Anyhow, 50/50 is how I see the top quarter. There are a couple of slam winners in this section (Kim Clijsters and Na Li), some young players with potential (Christina McHale and Laura Robson), a few “is the glass half full?” players like Jelena Jankovic; and Caroline Wozniacki, the number one player with less than 50/50 odds of holding the number one ranking at the end of the tournament.
Free Association: Potential let down. Laura Robson. Na Li. Ashleigh Barty.
Quarter Two: Bridesmaids
This one’s a no brainer. Francesca Schiavone would be the Maya Rudolph character (only because she’s the only slam winner). The rest of them have all been part of the supporting cast, though it seems Victoria Azarenka might be ready to catch the bouquet. I love the visual of Agnieszka Radwanska sitting on the bathroom sink, if only because she always seems to take a big dump at the slams.
Free Association: Throw back tennis. Mona Barthel. Victoria Azarenka. Julia Goerges.
Quarter Three: The Descendants
This quarter is the status quo. A lot of Russians, a serious amount of power, Serena Williams and a boatload of players who bash the ball: Kaia Kanepi, Sabine Lisicki, even little Dominika Cibulkova. If you’re looking for a powerful, modern game, this is your quarter. Plus, I can kind of picture Maria Sharapova dating George Cloony. Honorable mention: Serena Williams, the Meryl Streep of women’s tennis. And with Serena’s ability to forget the past, it’s a little Margaret Thatcher-esque (bad joke).
Free association: Yikes! Lucie Hradecka. Serena Williams. Kaia Kanepi.
Quarter Four: The Help
Let’s face it: this is the quarter of quarters for the WTA. Rising star Petra Kvitova, glamor girls Ana Ivanovic and Maria Kirilenko, local favorite Samantha Stosur (kind of Jelena Dokic…oh, and Jarmila Gajdosova) and a bunch of old players who don’t get any recognition.
Free association: Second slam titles are tough. Marion Bartoli. Petra Kvitova. Samantha Stosur.
Based on my free association I guess that means I’m picking Li, Azarenka, Serena and Kvitova. Which is pretty exciting. For the first time in ages, saying anyone can win the women’s title doesn’t mean anyone can win the women’s title. It means there is some great possibilities and some meaningful depth. I’m hoping 2012 is a big year for women’s tennis but I’m guessing it’s really going to set the stage for an incredible 2013.