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Saying what all others want to say

The final joke of women's tennis
By JEFF WELLS, Daily Telegraph

MY score from the ladies singles final: 2-1. Depth in women's tennis: 2. Entertainment value: 1 (out of 10).

So the one with the deltoids like Roy Jones Jr belted the one who used to prance about before she had ever won a title demanding her own Imax Theatre in the lobby of the Tennis Hall of Fame 7-6 6-3.

The big grunts, Venus and Serena Williams, play devastating tennis even if they don't quite pretend to the subtlety of the woodchop final at the Easter Show.

But they have reduced the women's game to a farce. It is down to them now with nobody, except maybe the 181cm Slovak 19-year-old Daniela Hantuchova, offering a hint of a grand slam threat in the foreseeable future.

All the dribble about the great depth in women's tennis that we have been force-fed for years by the WTA has burst like a soap bubble.

Compare this to the men. Lleyton Hewitt got to play somebody named Nalbandian.

Had you run a street poll in London before the tournament the answers might have been hilarious. What is a Nalbandian? An Indian tree snake? The Armenian parliament? A disease of the ankle bone?

No, he is an imposing 180cm 20-year-old right-handed Argentinian who beat Roger Federer for the 1998 US Open junior title, but once had trouble getting to the start on time.

Now with the car service at Wimbledon he has made the final at his first crack, and done it with a fine volley as well as smacking it from the baseline.

So what spin will the women put on this after two straight Serena-defeated-Venus grand slam final duds with the crowd looking like it had been flown in from Easter Island?

The spin now is to harp ad nauseum, until you want to throw a brick at Newk and his stooges on Nine, about what a glorious family they are.

Newk even waffles about their inspirational press conferences. Kerryn Pratt drools about their astronomical IQs.

I wonder if Newk has had to actually endure the drivel they have fed the slavering American media -- God Bless America, we have more African-American superstars to feel less guilty about -- since they arrived on the tour with the absolute eye for the main chance.

Everything they did or said from day one, and I know because I was there, was 100 per cent for the cameras, to boost the family bank balance. Sincerity rating zero.

Were they simply having their strings pulled by their ratbag father Richard? Or did they think up all that claptrap themselves? Two words of Spanish and you are declared a genius in USA Today. Give us all a break.

But we never really got one. There were the dodgy injuries, the refusal to play the same tournaments, and Venus' aghast reaction when Serena beat her to the punch by becoming the first to win a grand slam at the US Open in 1999.

There was that Wimbledon semi two years ago that most of the media present swore Serena plain tanked.

And the old man turning the traditions of The Championships into a fiasco by dancing like Humphrey Bear on LSD on top of the scorer's box.

And mother Oracene having to be thrown out of the Australian Open press conference room after trying to take over the place.

And the sight of her this year with that pumpkin fairy floss Afro that the mutant designers on Star Wars would have rejected as too weird.

There was Venus' snippy comments last week about Steffi Graf, who won seven Wimbledons, including three straight, not being her idea of a grasscourt player; not in the Venus category.

Well, Venus, you didn't get to the net much and you didn't win three straight. You had the snooty whupped fair out of your great big booty.

And there was Venus' rejection of random drug testing when the muscle sisters would be on top of the list of those wondering where all the power comes from. No accusations -- but they are from California, the commercial and spiritual home of growth hormone. And power is so dominant now that nobody should be immune from testing.

And there was the phoney scene-stealing histrionics of Venus at Roland Garros, grabbing a camera that she didn't know how to use despite her Einsteinian intellect. How about pressing the button?

Not this time however. That smile had been rushed over from Madam Tussaud's waxworks. I suspect if Venus had sneaked an Ouzi into her racquet bag it could have been an even worse massacre. Unless of course the conspiracy theorists were right and it was another fix.

I don't think so. I think Venus just couldn't hack the power and folded. Except for that joke gift of the second game of the second set when Venus was falling to pieces.,4057,4663349%255E13700,00.html

Messages In This Thread

Williams Sisters in Wimbledon Final
Williams, Capriati unhappy with drug testing plans
Mauresmo accuses Williams sisters of sharing spoil
It's a family affair
Oracene Williams mounts strong defence
Saying what all others want to say

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