It’s fair to say this isn’t a surprise. In the last 48 hours we have seen Grigor Dimitrov, Garbine Muguruza and Johanna Konta’s campaign come to an early end in what turned out to be not tennis paradise for the three players. So, what went wrong and where do they go from here?
Dimitrov’ performances of late have not been great. His second serve is taking a beating and it isn’t getting better. I didn’t think Dimitrov actually played too badly in his defeat against Fernando Verdasco but the tricky Spaniard is never easy to play against especially so early on in a tournament. Smallest of margins took the biggest impact. Verdasco saved 7/10 break points on his serve so Dimitrov created but couldn’t capatalise on chances but the Bulgarian faced 1 break point a set and failed to save all 3 in the match. His second serve was slightly more effective winning 19/35 points at 53% but isn’t top 5 level.
There is work to do to get back to that level we saw last year and that serve I’ve said a lot this year needs improving quick!
For the first set and a half she was unplayable, honestly it was the best tennis I had seen from her all year. She was hitting the ground strokes well, timing the ball and using her net play to her advantage to take a 6-2 3-0 40-0 lead and lost…
Before you know it Muguruza loses the set 7-5 and completely unravels in the third to lose 6-1. She looked shell-shocked! I don’t know how she managed to let that go the concentration wasn’t there and it was a similar story against Daria Kasatkina lately in Dubai.
It hasn’t happened for Konta this year. Early exits have been in a theme in Melbourne, Dubai and now Indian Wells. I watched Jo in Melbourne and I remember saying at the time she started the match looking erratic and full of panic! This was a close match at Indian Wells losing the two sets in 2 hours 15 but questions remain over her serve and also her ground strokes.
Konta plays a style of tennis I call ‘risky’ she goes for the lines and when the confidence isn’t high then it does suffer and it becomes messy. Jo does a lot of good in matches but it’s unravelled by these errors which will take time and confidence to eradicate something she does seem short on at the moment.