Tennis verses for the upcoming season
Nothing short of her first Grand Slam title this year will allow Jelena Jankovic to become a player we can revere.
The players are back on the court once more, but what do they hope the year has in store? We sum up the outlook for top 10 men and women in verse.
MEN1. Rafael Nadal
Be a force all the way through the season
A hard-court major would be one good reason.
2. Roger Federer
Just win a Slam, any Slam will do
The French Open, though, would be a real breakthrough.
3. Novak Djokovic
Keep pushing upward, and they'll forgive your sins
Jokes are funnier when made by someone who wins.
4. Andy Murray
Go Slam-less this year and it'll be off with your head
Win Wimbledon and you'll be knighted instead.
5. Nikolay Davydenko
Neither scandal nor success have helped to endear
Just be content to play spoiler for one more year.
6. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
You've floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee
But the real test is staying injury-free.
7. Gilles Simon
Last season was well above par
Tough to make this one meet that bar.
8. Andy Roddick
A new coach shows there's no plan to quietly go away
Now to see if there'll be any sustained improvement in play.
9. Juan Martin del Potro
Getting into the top 10 was a truly great leap
From here it gets a lot more steep.
10. James Blake
Beat Federer and got over the five-set hump
At 28, is there time for one more career jump?
WOMEN1. Jelena Jankovic
Captured a few titles and reached No. 1, too
From now only a Grand Slam title will do.
2. Serena Williams
With ailments and pullouts you'll continue to tease
Still, why change when you can win whenever you please?
3. Dinara Safina
Little sis now stands as a true Slam threat
If not for the family genes, would be a sure bet.
4. Elena Dementieva
Winning a major will require another gear
One you haven't yet shown in a non-Olympic year.
5. Ana Ivanovic
Started strong but ended as just a pretty face
The task this year is to find a consistent pace.
6. Venus Williams
Big triumphs are getting fewer and farther between
At least at Wimbledon you can still be queen.
7. Vera Zvonareva
Back in the top 10 after four years
But how long can you hold off the tears?
8. Svetlana Kuznetsova
A year and a half without a title
Winning another is becoming vital.
9. Maria Sharapova
Of this year's prospects, we could be bolder
If it wasn't for that troublesome shoulder.
10. Agnieszka Radwanska
Not a player against whom to wager
But must beef up game to win a major.
Kamakshi Tandon is a freelance tennis writer for ESPN.com.
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