2013 Wimbledon Profile: Victoria Azarenka

Friday, June 21, 2013 /by

Victoria Azarenka has yet to win Wimbledon, but she’s well-acquainted with Wimbledon winners: She has lost to the eventual champion in three of her last four appearances at the All England Club. What will it take for the two-time Wimbledon semifinalist to break through and reach her first final at SW19? Azarenka must be a bit more assertive on her serve to try to elicit more mid-court replies, take the first strike to control the center of the court and sometimes employ the net skills she showed on grass winning the bronze medal in singles and the mixed doubles gold medal with Max Mirnyi at the 2012 London Olympics. The return of serve becomes a weapon when Azarenka’s hitting it: She’s winning 57 percent of her return games this season. Given her formidable ground game and solid grass results, Azarenka should go deep in the draw.

Why She’ll Win:
Vika is one of only two women to beat top-ranked Serena this season. She can play near the lines without spewing errors and she’s one of the game’s most dangerous returners.

Why She Won’t:
Flatter hitters can force her to defend, she is not always quick off the mark moving forward and Azarenka’s second serve can be an issue: She’s hit 115 double faults against 45 aces this year.

Bottom Line:
Azarenka usually brings her best in majors—she’s advanced to at least the semifinals in five of her last six Grand Slam starts—and if she serves with authority she’s capable of challenging for the title.

 

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