Never underestimate the power of power in the women’s game.
It was a difficult start for Sabine Lisicki against up coming Croat Petra Martic. Martic employed a tricky grass court game that pushed Lisicki around, and pushed her out of her comfort zone. Her excellent front to back movement meant drop shots and creativity a plenty.
Power is the great devastator in the women’s game, and it is never more apparent on grass. Lisicki, down a break, could have panicked. A couple of aces and a fantastic service game and suddenly the pendulum had swung.
Martic knew it too. On one point in particular, she hit four shots to the Lisicki backhand, hoping to avoid the inevitable. One shot to Lisicki’s forehand, a dipping one at that, and the German ripped it up the line. Martic got there, but had no response to the shot.
Four games in a row, and Lisicki was on her way to a straight sets win. If Lisicki can find her spots, she can cause some serious damage at this tournament.
Struggling with health and injury issues has been the bane of her career, but she looks very fit and is moving very well. To boot, the low bounces of grass tend not to bother her, and she is able to still turn on shots from both wings. There was a certain professional confidence to her win today too, which bodes well for future matches.
Lisicki is hardly an outlier in this regard, as there are many other powerful floaters in this draw. Crush it, and you will be rewarded.