Wawrinka must forget short term and focus on long term recovery!

The return from surgery is not going well for Stan Wawrinka, the former Grand Slam champion does not look fit and hasn’t all year but is still turning up to tournaments.

The season started in Melbourne and he saw off Berankis in R1 before falling to Sandgren in R2. A good week followed in Sofia but the field wasn’t that great and eventually lost to Basic in the semi finals but did defeat Klizan and Troicki.

In Rotterdam and Marseille the appearance was cut short, a defeat and a retirement saw to that and now the question is what next?

I’m quite in shock that Stan has actually turned up to these tournaments! It makes no sense as he has looked no where near physically fit enough to be competitive. I don’t know whether he was planning on playing himself into form but it hasn’t worked and now the long term future has to be key.

Stan had new surgery in August and I don’t think the recovery plan has been great. To have just over 6 months off tennis, have knee surgery and then attempt four tournaments in five weeks is odd.

I’d imagine the plan is to skip Indian Wells and Miami and I can’t imagine a full clay schedule would be ideal for him as this surface can be unforgiving on the body especially the knees.

Whatever happens next the long term future has to be the plan for Stan as you cant afford to be so careless with the recovery which is what it has been so far.


Wawrinka 2-6 1-6 4-6 Sandgren – Concerns over left knee for former champion!

Under no stretch of the imagination did anyone expect a deep run from Wawrinka in Melbourne this year. This was the former champions first tournament since his withdrawal from Wimbledon 6 months ago and 2 matches in 3 days have taken it’s toll.

Building match fitness and strength around the knee will take time and right now I don’t think he’s near match fitness and it would be a smart move in my opinion to have an extended break from tennis and build fitness ahead of Indian Wells and Miami. I don’t really see the point in pushing for a lot of tournaments right now.


The positive for Stan was he did hit some of his grounds strokes well but did fall short on the projection off the serve and also the movement was lacking which is what you’d expect.

I was surprised after the second set to see Stan continue which I found odd. I understand not wanting to give up a match but here’s hoping he hasn’t done his body too much harm.

Rafa, Novak or Stan, which former champion is best prepared for Melbourne?

The question is who is best prepared?

Stan hasn’t played a tournament since Wimbledon, Novak has been missing for about 5 months and Rafa pulled out of London with knee trouble so who out of these former Australian Open champions is best prepared for the first major?

Rafael Nadal

The world number one has played the most tennis but not much since November but the draw has been favourable to him. He turned up to Melbourne last year with little practice and got to the final and to be honest I’d be astounded if he didn’t get to the semi-finals as with respect his path there is not challenging with only one other top 10 player in that section of the draw that being Cilic who he could meet in the quarter finals.

Stan Wawrinka

I don’t really fancy Stan’s chances in Melbourne, he is lacking match practice since late June/early July and I’d be surprised if he made it past round four which would likely be Dominic Thiem but failing that he could run into Verdasco or RBA in the third round.


Novak played well against Thiem the other day winning 6-4 6-2 but you can’t read anything into it going into Melbourne. First up for Novak is Donald Young which will be tough then most likely Monfils and if he is going to get to the semi-final could have to defeat Zverev as well and then in the semi-final Roger is also in that half. If he does it will be one of the biggest achievements in recent history on the men’s tour but whilst I wouldn’t rule anything out I wouldn’t bet on it.


Best prepared? Nadal then Djokovic and finally Stan. All have been at Melbourne Park for a week now so are finding their feet but winning here in Melbourne will be difficult but they are multiple champions for a reason!


Stan’s ‘battling hard’ but will he be back to defend his title in New York?

By the time the US Open begins on the 28th of August it would have been 80 days since Stan Wawrinka won a tennis match a wait of almost three months since he defeated Andy Murray in the semi-finals of the French Open.

The defending US Open champion has withdrawn from the two Masters 1000 events in Montreal and Cincinnati that lead up to the final major of the year in New York but it is looking unlikely at the moment that Stan will participate in the tournament.

In a statement he said he is battling hard to be back fit in time for the US Open with this injury bothering him for at least 6 weeks now.

The news opens up the draw even more as there will be no Novak Djokovic in New York in a few weeks time and the race is on for the defending champion to be fit for Flushing Meadows.



Feliciano brings flair and craft to see of Stan

Feliciano Lopez has kept his good form going with a very solid and creative performance to see off what looked like an injured Stan Wawrinka following the Spaniard’s title win last week in Stuttgart on the grass and with this form it does make him a dangerous player.

From the beginning of the match the whole feeling seemed a bit flat with if anything too comfortable for Feliciano in particular to hold serve with that big lefty serve, variety and that crafty play he brings to the court.

Towards the end of the match we saw more and more brilliance from the Spaniard who took advantage of the situation Stan was in with the recent French Open finalist seeming to have some issues with his knee and struggling to respond and react quickly enough to have a chance but one moment where Stan looked to have got the better of Lopez with a lob the Spaniard replied in style.


Chasing down the lob his shot placement was perfect running around to go for that forehand down the line which he found!

On the other side it is a worrying time for Stan who after a long couple of weeks in Paris still doesn’t look ready for the grass being knocked out in the first round for the second year running at Queen’s and with this knee injury it puts chances of doing well at Wimbledon (a tournament he’s never been past the quarter finals in) in doubt.


Wawrinka falls short in Dubai!

Defending champion Stan Wawrinka’s run in Dubai ended before it got going. The Swiss number one fell short to Damir Dzumhur with a lack lustre performance ahead of Indian Wells.

Anywhere but there!

How many times do you watch a tennis match and see a player approach the net and think hit the ball anywhere but right at your opponent?


Annoyingly you can’t actually see Dzumhur which shows as well how deep he is on the court but up until this point it was a perfectly constructed point by Stan until he approached the net, anyway but down the middle and he wins the point but there seemed to be a lack of composure from Stan.

Falling short

The other aspect of the match which Stan never got into was the push in the rallies. It was like watching a training session from his end but credit to Damir who did open up the court and had to work hard as well but Stan didn’t press him.


This isn’t 100% accurate to what happened in the match but it set the tone to be honest. Majority of rallies from Stan were landing here in the court as shown above. You can’t put a performance together that would win a match with literally no depth on the court.

It was inviting from Stan and like all good invitations Damir expected and despite the faults of Wawrinka deserved his win to advance in Dubai.


Clinical Kei breezes past Stan at the O2!

Clinical and control, just two words I would use to describe Kei Nishikori’s performance against Stan Wawrinka on Day 2 at the World Tour Finals. For Stan Wawrinka just the one word – disinterested. The US Open champion looked out of sorts and didn’t get into the rhythm of the match at all and was really disappointing.

How the first break set the tone

The first break of the match at 2-2 in set one set the tone for the match. Kei looked fresh and his game plan was spot on but for Stan it looked like a training session and it was poor from him.


Someone who is renowned for his power and depth he get’s on the ball he set up Nishikori to take control so many times and no wonder the Japanese star was dominant in points won at the net and the baseline as the short ball sets you up for that control and Kei broke down the Swiss number one’s defence really well.

Stan didn’t turn up and now needs some big motivation to keep his chance of getting to the semi-finals alive but take nothing away from Kei, I have to say that was probably his most impressive performance of the season for me and it’s interesting to see it come in the final event of the year, has he just thrown his name into the hat of contenders or are we getting carried away?

Screenshot credit to SkySports