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  Topic Review (Newest First)
11-14-2009 10:10 PM
lalaland
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
Then we should agree that getting another coach who could treat the cause of the problem and not only smoothen its symptoms wouldn't be a bad idea.
I don't agree on sacking Tutu, but if he can add another coach to his entourage, I wouldn't object .

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
I don't think his main problem is a matter of self-belief, actually it's a bit of the opposite; he set up too high expectations on himself since he became a toptener, get frustrated when his playing doesn't meet those expectations, lose the plot and ultimately the match; something that rarely happens when he was lower ranked and didn't care much for beautiful game and stuff, as long as it worked.
Failing to meet his own expectation probably contribute to him doubting himself a bit, hence, the self-belief problem kicks in. But I know what you mean, and I do agree. I don't think he cares much for beautiful game now either, he just knew that he needs more game to consistently challenge top players, and getting more aggressive is just necessary because you can't win a big tournament playing long matches one after the others. A lot of things contribute to the epic slump in spring, but end result was the self-doubt. I think when he was getting a bit defensive when ppl asked him about his top 10 status in the summer, it really sounded a bit like he was trying to convince himself that he belongs. But now, he's optimistic about getting back to that level and sounded a lot more confident that he will. I think he finally managed to put thing into perspective, and the injury has helped him focus on the tasks instead of wasting energy to think too much/care too much about what others think. I'm really feeling good about his chance to get back to top 10 next year, new coach or not, bar any injury of course.
11-14-2009 09:23 PM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post
I think friends and family supports are quite different from supports in your profession. That’s how I see it anyway. We both agree that Tutu hasn’t done enough to fix Gilles’ self-belief problem. However, I still think supportive and understanding are important in those fragile moments, despite the fact that it didn’t help fix the issue.
Then we should agree that getting another coach who could treat the cause of the problem and not only smoothen its symptoms wouldn't be a bad idea. I think I've already said it on here, I don't think his main problem is a matter of self-belief, actually it's a bit of the opposite; he set up too high expectations on himself since he became a toptener, get frustrated when his playing doesn't meet those expectations, lose the plot and ultimately the match; something that rarely happens when he was lower ranked and didn't care much for beautiful game and stuff, as long as it worked.
11-14-2009 01:38 AM
lalaland
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
Well, that's where I don't really agree. Families, friends and girlfriend are there for that kind of support. You would expect from a coach something specifically focused on handling and winning matches, that's what he's paid for. And when I see how a mentally rock solid player by the end of 08 turned into a shaky, easily furstrated guy for half of 09, I can't help but questioning his coach's work, hoping he did more than just being supportive or understanding.
I think friends and family supports are quite different from supports in your profession. That’s how I see it anyway. We both agree that Tutu hasn’t done enough to fix Gilles’ self-belief problem. However, I still think supportive and understanding are important in those fragile moments, despite the fact that it didn’t help fix the issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
You wouldn't get that impression by reading his interviews, especially those early on in his career. He sounded pretty confident of his talent and worth to the point that he was labelled as arrogant by many other French players. I agree that technical and tactical aspects of the game should be easy for him considering his personality and genuine talent although he's paradoxically one of most technically limited player to make it into the top ten.. (hello coach ^^).
Earlier in his career, his expectation of himself was a top 20-30 players, that’s the level of belief that he has in himself. He’s confident of his talent to achieve that level. Don’t think even Gilles expected himself to get to Top 10, or at least not in such rapid pace. It’s a whole new standard that requires a higher level of confident. He is not Djokovic or DelPo, who knew they belong in top 10 in young age and are quite mentally prepared once they got there. I think it’s understandable that Gilles has to go thru a period of reassessing his mentality to adjust to the new standard.

As for his technical limitation, yes, he should really employ more shots in his repertoire. And I’m not sure if that’s a technical issue either. He can play those shots, he needs to be confident enough to play those shots in tight matches. So it’s again a confidence issue. He can be bold when he feels that he has nothing to lose (Nadal in Madrid, or even that Ljubicic match when he thought he has no hope of winning), but he played conservatively when he feels he has much to lose, like when he played Misha for example. The Valencia match was hard to watch cos I felt he’s a bit crippled by fear and resorted back to playing his natural defensive style.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
I don't get that Tulasne's comment either. Gilles has been using slices and dropshots before but it's the first time I see him play those shots decidedly with a tactic in mind and it was . I guess that seeing Gilles play differently than how he was supposed to just crumble all his landmarks.
I really hope that Gilles and Tutu take the hint from this match and open their minds. Why sell yourself short, Gilles deserves some credits for being able to play those shots so effectively and pull a win off it. He can build something from there.
11-13-2009 11:06 PM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

You're being def too simplistic.

It only shows that you're better than your buddy in that sort of training during that particular session.
11-13-2009 10:58 PM
Puschkin
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
Young players don't necessarely know what style of game suit them best either because they'aren't aware of their potential or their knowledge and experience of the sport is partial and limited.
Is that true? That's hard to believe. I mean if you do a tough volley session and you miss regularly only one out of ten while your buddy misses five, that should make it obvious that you have a gift for the net. Or am I too simplistic?
11-13-2009 10:53 PM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puschkin View Post
But that type of coach is more of a support-person than somebody who really changes your tennis.
No I meant their full potential tennis wise in response to "stay true to himself, including his tennis-capabilities". Young players don't necessarely know what style of game suit them best either because they'aren't aware of their potential or their knowledge and experience of the sport is partial and limited. Edberg comes to mind, he started as a two handed BH baseliner a la Borg before turning into a S&V player. Whoever changed his game did actually bring him back to his true self.
11-13-2009 10:34 PM
Puschkin
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
I fully agree with this in any professional field for that matter. But the question is how many players in their teens or early twenties know themselves that good as to envision their full potential. That's where an experimented coach can do wonders.
But that type of coach is more of a support-person than somebody who really changes your tennis. You attribute such a role to family, if I understood your other post correctly. Fact is, however, that the guys might spend more time with their coaches than with their families, in particular if they have a girl-friend like Gilles who - according to my humble knowlegde -does not travel with him.

Anyway I am a lay person on all these issues. I never did professional sports or anything close to it. I don't pretend my views are correct. But I have been watching tennis for a long time and what I state is just a summary of my observations.
11-13-2009 10:25 PM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puschkin View Post
So what should he have done in the match against Ljubicic? I have not seen it, so I can't really discuss it, sorry!
What I meant is that the way he played after his injury is how he should be playing on a regular basis i.e adding variety to his game to make the most of the situation. Because he could hardly move, he was stuck inside the court after serve and had to take the ball early and it happens that his simple technic on both wing allows him to do so finely; being inside the court also allow him to hit shots he wouldn't even think of if he were standing two meters behind baseline as he is used to. If I were cynical, I would say that that 2 millisecond striking pain broaden his game more than two years of coaching.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puschkin View Post
The more I think about it, the more I feel that a coach's task is not to change a player, but to help him stay true to himself, including his tennis-capabilities.
I fully agree with this in any professional field for that matter. But the question is how many players in their teens or early twenties know themselves that good as to envision their full potential tennis-capabilities wise. That's where an experimented coach can do wonders.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Puschkin View Post
Santoro comes to my mind. The guy only became so good later in his career, because he accepted his weaknesses and only used his strength: touch over power. And in addition, it made him happy becasue he was at peace with himself.
But if he had had a good coach by his side in the early stage of his career, one might think he would have accepted that state of matter much earlier on.
11-13-2009 10:12 PM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post
The coach is the main support system and I think Gilles needs that especially, he’s getting that from Tutu, hence they get along so well. So many doubts were cast on him since the beginning when he was a kid, if he isn’t so stubbornly persistent, he probably wouldn’t have made it. He doesn’t have all the confident in the world like Jo has, he made it more on having a : “you think I can’t? I’ll show you” attitude. I think he needs a coach who listens to him and believes in him so he doesn’t feel that he needs to prove to his coach too, probably makes him feels that he has someone on his side so he’s not alone fighting his way thru. That’s what it looks to me anyway.
Well, that's where I don't really agree. Families, friends and girlfriend are there for that kind of support. You would expect from a coach something specifically focused on handling and winning matches, that's what he's paid for. And when I see how a mentally rock solid player by the end of 08 turned into a shaky, easily furstrated guy for half of 09, I can't help but questioning his coach's work, hoping he did more than just being supportive or understanding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post
The technical and tactical are the easy part to improve really. His problem is his self-belief and it’s the part that I think Tutu hasn’t done enough to make him believes, “keep telling him that he’s good" obviously doesn’t work .
You wouldn't get that impression by reading his interviews, especially those early on in his career. He sounded pretty confident of his talent and worth to the point that he was labelled as arrogant by many other French players. I agree that technical and tactical aspects of the game should be easy for him considering his personality and genuine talent although he's paradoxically one of most technically limited player to make it into the top ten.. (hello coach ^^).

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post
What I don’t understand, is why Tutu said he “hates” that "bluff" win, what does that mean? Maybe that’s why Gilles is still so unsure of himself, he just thought he kept winning the bluff. Where are all those slices and dropshots came from? if you just know how to play shots that you never play before, all by instinct, then you really are that good, that’s talent. Why see it as a bluff? It's his potential, really. Imagine what he’ll be capable of if he starts practicing those shots. Starts seeing from a useful perspective, idk, it may work.
I don't get that Tulasne's comment either. Gilles has been using slices and dropshots before but it's the first time I see him play those shots decidedly with a tactic in mind and it was . I guess that seeing Gilles play differently than how he was supposed to just crumble all his landmarks.
11-13-2009 07:52 AM
Puschkin
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
There are other ways to change his game than coming to net and you know something isn't working right when the player bring himself to think of other gameplans only under extreme circumstances like vs Ljubicic.
So what should he have done in the match against Ljubicic? I have not seen it, so I can't really discuss it, sorry!

What I wanted to say is that game-plans seem a little bit overrated to me. My feeling is that players even without coaches know each other and about their strengths and weaknesses, consciously or subconsciously. They know that they have to be aggressive themselves against aggressive players, they know that some players have weaknesses in concentration and that you just have to stay long enough in the match. E.g. Andreev comes to my mind. Or when Ferrero was at his best, drop-shotting against him was suicide, because he was so fast.

But on a given day it might still not work. And then the player has to be capable to rely on his strengths, thus requiring confidence. The more I think about it, the more I feel that a coach's task is not to change a player, but to help him stay true to himself, including his tennis-capabilities. Santoro comes to my mind. The guy only became so good later in his career, because he accepted his weaknesses and only used his strength: touch over power. And in addition, it made him happy becasue he was at peace with himself.

That's just my take on things. I am not pretending that I know it all.
11-13-2009 07:29 AM
lalaland
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by MsTree View Post
I think it might teach him valuable lessons about his game and his limits (or lack of them )
Let's hope he does learn about his limits. The jury is still out there though, see if he really rests as long as the knee needs and then we'll decide if he learns.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
my main grief is that I have the feeling his improvement curve would have been the same without Tulasne; I would be hardpressed to determine his coach's input in either his game (he used to tweak his gameplan here and there very often in the past) or his attitude during matches in general (on some occasions, I felt he wasn't prepared at all to deal with tigh situations which were quite predictable though). Of course, it's very hard from our place to assess accurately Tulasne's real input (although his interviews give quite a few clue about it), that's why I would be very curious to see what another "less passive" or more rigorous coach would make of Gilles.
The coach is the main support system and I think Gilles needs that especially, he’s getting that from Tutu, hence they get along so well. So many doubts were cast on him since the beginning when he was a kid, if he isn’t so stubbornly persistent, he probably wouldn’t have made it. He doesn’t have all the confident in the world like Jo has, he made it more on having a : “you think I can’t? I’ll show you” attitude. I think he needs a coach who listens to him and believes in him so he doesn’t feel that he needs to prove to his coach too, probably makes him feels that he has someone on his side so he’s not alone fighting his way thru. That’s what it looks to me anyway.

The technical and tactical are the easy part to improve really. His problem is his self-belief and it’s the part that I think Tutu hasn’t done enough to make him believes, “keep telling him that he’s good" obviously doesn’t work . What I don’t understand, is why Tutu said he “hates” that "bluff" win, what does that mean? Maybe that’s why Gilles is still so unsure of himself, he just thought he kept winning the bluff. Where are all those slices and dropshots came from? if you just know how to play shots that you never play before, all by instinct, then you really are that good, that’s talent. Why see it as a bluff? It's his potential, really. Imagine what he’ll be capable of if he starts practicing those shots. Starts seeing from a useful perspective, idk, it may work.
11-13-2009 12:34 AM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland View Post
I think Gilles changes his gameplan from time to time depending on who he plays, subtle changes, not as drastic as changing his style like he did against Ljubicic, and he doesn't need to do that all the time anyway regardless of what the critics say how he needs to be aggressive etc etc. And despite the drop in ranking this season, I really think he improves quite a bit on his game. Of course there's still quite a bit of deficits waiting to be improved, it will take time to take care of those things. But anyway, this season is a learning curve he has to go thru, those ups and downs, learning to deal with pressure and expectations, dealing with injuries... All that, it's a lot to handle in 12 months. Considering he was so fragile in spring, I thought he came around quite nicely at the end. And I believe he is still on his upward swing in capitalizing his potential. So as far as I'm concern, nothing is broken and no need to make coach change.
On the whole, I agree, he came around quite nicely at the end especially ranking wise. Sure he will learn a lot from this year experience but my main grief is that I have the feeling his improvement curve would have been the same without Tulasne; I would be hardpressed to determine his coach's input in either his game (he used to tweak his gameplan here and there very often in the past) or his attitude during matches in general (on some occasions, I felt he wasn't prepared at all to deal with tigh situations which were quite predictable though). Of course, it's very hard from our place to assess accurately Tulasne's real input (although his interviews give quite a few clue about it), that's why I would be very curious to see what another "less passive" or more rigorous coach would make of Gilles.
11-13-2009 12:28 AM
lalaland
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natsume View Post
Gilles has just signed up for Brisbane (04-11 Jan 2010).

http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Ten...ake-Debut.aspx

Gilles, you can not be serious .
Okay, not going to jump on him too fast, I think it's just the organizer trying to advertise it before the words are out that Gilles' gonna be out for a couple of months. Well, it better be. I'm gonna write to Gilles and tell him that he's an idiot if he doesn't take at least 2 full months to heal just like the doctor ordered.
11-13-2009 12:11 AM
turtle-rn
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Gilles has just signed up for Brisbane (04-11 Jan 2010).

http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Ten...ake-Debut.aspx
11-12-2009 11:47 PM
MsTree
Re: 2009 Fall Hardcourt Thread

Forgetting about clay I think he's had a great season considering...
I don't want to bang on about his knee but in the long run I think it might teach him valuable lessons about his game and his limits (or lack of them ) He seems to be in a better headspace now than at any point since the AO and he saved his best fight till last (ok 2nd last then). There's loads of room for improvement still, and the rollercoaster ride will continue next season, with any luck
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