For now, the French Open sits on the center stage of the World sports audience, and of course that means The Venus and Serena Williams Show is in full effect. But as much as it seems as though the Williams sisters dominate all things tennis, they both actually have a pretty tough record in the French Open. Serena has one French Open championship to her name, which she achieved in 2002 by beating her sister Venus. Other than that year, neither of the sisters has been in the French Open Women’s Singles Championship, which is hard to imagine. Even more difficult to imagine is that the two ladies have not mastered the doubles competition for the French Open. The Williams sisters won the French Open Women’s Doubles Championship in 1999 towards the beginning of their worldwide, decade-long, domination of the sport.
The French Open courts are made of red clay, which makes for one of the most unique terrains for players to compete in a major championship (the other major tennis championships are the Australian Open which was won by Serena this year, Wimbledon which is coming up in a month or so, and the U.S. Open which is at the end of the summer). The clay loosens as the players shuffle back and forth in competition, and slowly the competition becomes a dusty affair with players sliding back and forth across the court. This dynamic makes it hard for players to stop, and thus a very unique skill set is needed to achieve success.
For Venus and Serena the red clay courts are not the most complimentary to their skill set. Simply put, the Williams sisters are big, and big ain’t where it’s at with the French Open. As much as the Williams sisters are strong, powerful, and nimble, there are some terrains better suited for the smaller quicker ladies and gentlemen. For Venus and Serena, it isn’t easy to stop those beautifully large bodies on loose clay, as opposed to the solid courts of the US Open, or the gripping grass of the Wimbledon courts in England, and thus they are historically more successful in those competitions.
Despite the natural deficiencies of the Williams sisters on the French Open courts, we all know that they make a habit out of coming out winners in most things that they do, it seems. I mean, no matter who wins this year’s French Open, the story of the tournament is Venus Williams negligee inspired tennis outfit…complete with nude colored undergarments, Oh my! Venus had Paris on fire with that outfit, and fortunately her play in the early rounds says that she is on her A-game with the tennis competition, too.
Venus can always be counted on to go out on top, or in a blaze of glory, so the gorgeous ladies of Compton are set up well for the French Open. What about the other players you say? They’re not from Compton, so they get no play in this column (smile).
Summer sports; It ain’t just baseball. Tell the kids to pick up a tennis racket, golf club, or a baseball glove, and “don’t come home ‘til you win, or the street lights come on.” Venus, Serena, and Tiger Woods need some young’ns to assume the mantle. Next.