Tennis: Dinara Safina – Self Control

It’s the US Open Ladies Singles Semi-Final. Heavy winds are making conditions difficult, for both Serena Williams and Dinara Safina. And Safina is not making life easy for herself, or her tennis racket.

The racket is getting a pummelling, as Safina lets out her frustration. Bounced the racket off the court, after nearly every mistake, the Russian is not only battling Serena, and the wind. She is fighting against herself, and her own high expectations.

This was a US Open semi-final day, demanding calm and patience. You cannot fight such testing conditions with fire. Greater calm and patience, would have allowed Safina to think more clearly. To find solutions to counter Serena. To maybe, find a way to win.

But each error, compounded Safina’s sense of frustration. As if, she was putting such a high demand on herself, to deliver excellence. And that she couldn’t quite understand, why she wasn’t performing, to her expected standard.

Calm and patience, would have given her the mental space, to think through her options. But, that mental space was occupied by in-fighting. Serena Williams, showed Dinara Safina, how to win, when you are not playing your A game.

If the Russian wants the major titles, to match her ability, its a lesson, she will need to learn.

Posted in Sports Psychology Blog, Tennis Psychology.