The Wimbledon Championships have been over for a week, so it's time for some reflection.
It's a bit interesting that the new Men's Champion is defined mostly by defense and the new Women's Champion by incredible offense. It would seem that the power gap between the men's and women's game is getting thinner.
No man has ever played defensive tennis better than Andy Murray in this championship win over hard hitting Milos Raonic. Murray returned almost everything Raonic could throw at him. Does anyone else think that Raonic reminds them of Andy Roddick … with a great serve, big forehand, suspect backhand, solid volleys and a big lumbering body? Coaches often talk about getting that one extra ball back to give their opponent the opportunity to miss. Murray was returning 140 mph serves and what seemed like 150 mph overheads with remarkable consistency and is the new poster child for that one extra ball in play.
No woman has ever played with as much pure power as Serena Williams. She is so far ahead of the rest of the women's game in this area it's scary. The best ever? Likely. The most powerful ever? Game, set and match.
It seemed like Roger had his best shot for one more Slam in this tournament and he was so close. It's not easy to see how he will win one more and add to his record total without an almost perfect storm of events. Novak has a real shot to catch up and pass Roger in career Slams.
Venus still has game and is one class act. She seems to love playing, and I wouldn't be shocked to see her around for a few more years at a high level.
Steve Kaplan is the owner and managing director of Bethpage Park Tennis Center, as well as director emeritus of Lacoste Academy for New York City Parks Foundation, and executive director and founder of Serve &Return Inc. Steve has coached more than 1,100 nationally- ranked junior players, 16 New York State high school champions, two NCAA Division 1 Singles Champions, and numerous highly-ranked touring professionals. Many of the students Steve has closely mentored have gone to achieve great success as prominent members of the New York financial community, and in other prestigious professions. In 2017, Steve was awarded the Hy Zausner Lifetime Achievement Award by the USTA. He may be reached by e-mail at StevenJKaplan@aol.com.