Posts Tagged ‘Mary Joe Fernandez


Mary Joe has got to go!! Mary Joe has got to go!!

Christina McHale is an 18 year old American tennis player who has been selected to represent her country in her second Fed Cup tie this weekend. She’s probably excited and proud by the selection, and her family is most likely making plans to travel to Alabama to watch her play.

But hold on! The USA captain is trying to cajole one of the Williams sisters into playing instead of McHale! Even though both the sisters have said publicly that they are unavailable. Mary Joe, it’s time to s— or get off the pot! It’s time to go with the team that got the USA into the semi finals, It’s time to do the right thing. It’s time to build camraderie, team spirit, and to provide a chance for the future stars of US tennis to shine.

It is unfair to put Christina’s life on hold, unfair to make her suffer while the Captain dithers around like an old clucking hen. It’s time to dump Mary Joe Fernandez!


Fernandez is destoying the Fed Cup’s concept.


Melanie Oudin voiced her young opinion regarding the status of American women’s tennis during an ESPN interview after her victory over Elena Dementieva. She reiterated her belief that there was a lack of camaraderie among the US players, and a feeling that some players feel that there are superior to some others. She lent her support to Christina  McHale who she hoped would do well against Maria Sharapova. She just happens to be drawn against the winner in the next round. But she sounded genuine.

She expounded her theory by referring to the Russian women who are openly supportive of their fellow countrymen even though they are competitors. The Russian women are not all buddy buddy friends, but coming from similar backgrounds and similar training schools they have established a degree of respect and admiration for their respective achievements. Their Fed Cup team, the best until 2009, does not always feature their top players, but instead is comprised of those players who played in previous matches and did well. Players are rewarded for consistency, and team spirit is predominant in the team’s composition.

The US women’s team had some camaraderie in their two rounds of play which got them into the final against Italy, maybe enough to win the coveted crown, but this team spirit will be thrown out of the window by Captain Mary Joe Fernandez when she kicks out her best young players and replaces them with the Williams sisters. Both of the sisters refused to play for their country in the earlier rounds, and are now being rewarded with the chance to be heroes, if they win.

This doesn’t sound like a recipe for building team spirit to me, nor is it fair……but then in some people’s minds winning is everything!


Fed Cup team selection?….It’s an easy choice.

_maryjoe1Italy is hoping the Williams sisters decide to skip the Fed Cup final in November!  

Either way, the 2006 champions plan to host the United States in the best-of-five series on slow red clay courts. Between now and November 7th, there will be lots of discussion about the US Team that will be selected to play in the Fed Cup final. The choice of players will be made by Mary Joe Fernandez. Of course she will be pressured by the USTA, and every American Tennis expert who has a voice and an opinion.

So I’m going on record with mine. It would be a cruel and callous move to even ask the Williams sisters to play in the final, and I hope that if they are asked they will respect the members of the team that got the US into the final, by declining.

Their inclusion on the team would be a detriment to the camaraderie that this young team has acquired, and this is a team event where team work is as important as tennis skills. And in a more practical matter, neither sister is that good on clay. 


“I hope the Williams sisters don’t come,” Italy captain Corrado Barazzutti told The Associated Press on Tuesday. “If they do come, we’ll try to beat them. It’s not impossible on clay. (Flavia) Pennetta has already beaten Venus more than once.”

The 14th-ranked Pennetta beat Venus Williams twice last year — including a victory at the French Open — although Venus won their last two meetings.

Italy defeated Russia 4-1 and the United States edged the Czech Republic 3-2 in the Fed Cup semifinals on Sunday. The Williams sisters — Venus and Serena — skipped the trip to Brno, and Fed Cup rookies Alexa Glatch and Bethanie Mattek-Sands lined up for United States captain Mary Joe Fernandez.

The Fed Cup final on Nov. 7-8 follows the season-ending WTA Championships in Doha, where it’s likely the Williams sisters will play. Italy would like to host the final on outdoor clay to soften the impact of the Williams sister’s fierce groundstrokes.

“We’re definitely going to play on clay — very slow clay — and if possible, outdoors,” Barazzutti said. “First we need to determine if we can play outdoors, then we’ll choose the most uncomfortable setting possible. Uncomfortable in the sense that it suits us and not the Americans.”

The 19-year-old Glatch cruised in her two singles victories against the Czechs.

“On clay, sometimes it’s not enough just to play well,” Barazzutti said. “You’ve got to work. It’s very unlikely she’ll be able to beat our players 6-2, 6-2, because our players are natural clay players.”

Francesca Schiavone won two singles matches for Italy against two-time defending champion Russia, and Roberta Vinci improved her Fed Cup doubles record to 13-0, teaming with Sara Errani.

“Ours is a team that has that extra spirit necessary to obtain great results,” Barazzutti said. “They’re friends and they respect each other. The national team is very important to them, and that has helped create such a tight-knit group.”

The United States has won all nine previous meetings with Italy, although they haven’t met since 2003.

Italy has reached the final three of the past four years, winning its only title in 2006 against Belgium. This is the first time Italy will host the final.

The U.S. has won a record 17 Fed Cup titles but none since 2000.

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