Here & Now Guest:
Bud Collins, veteran tennis correspondent for the Boston Globe
At Wimbledon, the top players on the men's side will continue the fight for the title-- Spain's Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer of Switzerland, Serbia's Novak Djokovic and Britain's Andy Murray are all still contenders.
But the women's side is less certain. Today, Germany's Sabine Lisicki defeated France's Marion Bartoli, after a day of massive upsets Monday--Venus and Serena Williams, who have both won multiple times, were bounced from Wimbledon, along with number one seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark.
"It's a pretty rare Wimbledon when you have those two not winning one of the titles, and I think they'll be back," veteran Boston Globe tennis correspondent Bud Collins told Here & Now's Robin Young.
"Everybody's hitting way too hard. The new rackets and the new strings are the culprits... the good lord didn't make us to hit every ball as hard as you can."Bud Collins, Veteran Sports Columnist
When asked about speculation that women are being taught to hit too hard, and that that may be behind some of the irregularity in tournament play, Collins said "everybody's hitting way too hard. The new rackets and the new strings are the culprits... the good lord didn't make us to hit every ball as hard as you can."
Collins said that today's game is centered around the baseline, which has actually changed the way the grass grows on the court.
"If you look at that court, the area called the T [near the net], looks like a farm that's growing everything. In the old days, that used to be a place where players came to the net, now nobody goes to the net and as a result the wear on the court is back by the baseline, where the server stands. I think the game is a little out of balance now."
The balance of tennis has changed in another way-- today Americans are rarely contending for titles. American Mardy Fish is the only American left in Wimbledon today.
"He's the lone ranger, the last American," said Collins. "That's cause for some concern, although we shouldn't be too jingoistic because the rest of the world has started to play this game."
This segment aired on June 28, 2011.