It’s Day 3 of the Australian Open as we wrap up 1st Round encounters and this one has to be one that was on the radar. A current Top 10 player and a former Top 10 player – Pliskova is a constant darkhorse with her capacity to toe the line with almost any Top 10 player. Of course, when it comes to Rybakina, there is a reason why she is on the cusp of winning her second Grand Slam title. Needless to say, these two players deliver a very similar yet unique twist to the game. It is fairly easy to say Rybakina knows how to pack a punch with her serve and follow it up with the simple one two and done. Pliskova on the other hand has a very similar approach, however, as she is no longer at the peak of her career her angles of influence are not as dominant as her counterparts that are closer to the top echelon of play. If you are familiar with my body of work, then this language is quite commonplace that I have refrained from using in our more recent pieces. Nonetheless, these terms are incredibly powerful and noteworthy when it comes to a more rigourous analysis of these type of players, whilst insuring key micro discrepancies are accounted for.
No matter how frequently “How to Develop a Top 10 Tennis Ranking” is disclosed, given that it only hit the stands merely a few weeks ago, there is so much more to learn and share. And these two players in equal measure at varying points of their career align with these key metrics. By all accounts, Pliskova can still bring her A-Game when needed. However, in this encounter and primarily the second set Rybakina has upped the anti and is the more consistently dominant player. Nevertheless, Pliskova still has moments throughout play where those aforementioned angles of influence are compounded and are a direct consequence of the first set going all the way to a tiebreak that could’ve easily gone either way. Of course, when it comes to Rybakina this is no surprise. Perhaps it is partially unfair to have expected the first set to have been more lopsided in Rybakina’s favour, but that just goes to show how impressive Pliskova can be and remains in pushing a Top 10 player all the way.
After claiming the Brisbane International in solid form, Rybakina has entered the Australian Open as one of the favourites whilst at a career high ranking. This is of no surprise given the players recent trajectory over the past 2+ seasons. Interestingly, Rybakina features in the “What is Your Game Missing Series” – prior to her ascension to claiming her maiden Grand Slam Championship more than a season ago. Again, another player that our metrics have tracked over an extended period of time that flagged this player with an increased probability of ascending toward the Top 10 whilst positioning them as a contender for a Grand Slam title(s). Fast forward another season and Rybakina has not disappointed with her level of maintenance and upkeep – it is absolutely exceptional.
Whilst a number of Top 10 players fluctuate their level of play throughout the season, there are only a handful of players that are able to maintain this level of play alongside their serious contention for one of the four Grand Slam titles per season.
Of course, Pliskova has done this before and made deep runs at Grand Slams on multiple occasions. Now it is Rybakina’s time and a changing of the guard in a manner of speaking, that whilst Pliskova is an incredible competitor in tonight encounter, it was Rybakina that shone through on those key moments. That said, it’s important not to take anything away from Pliskova being able to maintain a level of maintenance that is exhibited through the scoreline and further compounded through a multitude of points throughout this close encounter. Of course, Rybakina went into and has gone into this match as favourite, whilst also walking away with the win, this isn’t to say it was an easy task. Potentially one of the more arduous 1st Round encounters, it was anticipated that the likelihood of going to three (sets) was rather high. For Rybakina to close the match out in two tight sets needs to be highlighted that those nerves of steel really did play their part whilst her capacity to go for broke at times when the majority of players would sway to the side of caution — this is just another example of Rybakina’s potential, not merely this Australian Open, but this season, and the next to come if this calibre of play is not only consistent and maintained, but those 8 Keys become even more solidified in her game.
On a final point, the 7 Keys that coincide with The Long Game are an absolute for a player to maintain this level of play that is typically not seen in a player outside the Top 10 and/or on the trajectory to become a barrier breaker. Even though Pliskova’s metrics were not at the level of frequency required for a Top 10 player, she exhibited signs of her former Top 10 status which needs to be noted and is incredibly commendable. Not only does this position Pliskova with an increased potential to ascend closer towards the Top 30, it all comes down to the players application of the 7 Keys and ultimately becoming conscious of the 8th Key and cementing this into their game.
It almost goes without saying that Rybakina in this match and also so far this (new) season has exhibited not only the 7 Keys, but all 8 Keys that further her Grand Slam Championship status and her new rankings high.
Recall, the predictive analytics shared in “The 7 Keys to Optimise Your Life” – revealing the 7 Keys in a rather intricate way whilst providing a roadmap towards the Top 10 tennis rankings. These very metrics alongside the newer science embedded in the new release, “How to Develop a Top 10 Tennis Ranking“, is what really sets these players a part and pinpoints Rybakina for a stellar season ahead if this level of a maintenance with these core metrics is upheld and the 8 Keys are continuously solidified in the player’s game.
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