The Australian Open is ready to begin next week, and to get ready for the action, here's a look back at the top 5 most interesting and exciting moments from 2014!
5. Serena Stunned
This woman has dominated women’s tennis like no other in recent years, but her erratic form is often her Achilles’ heel. Starting her 2014 tournament with straight set wins before being defeated in 3 sets by Ana Ivanovic. Was the heat too hot for the American to handle? We’ll see how she returns this year. Watch the win here:
4. The Djoke’s On You, Novak
With back to back…to back titles for Novak Djokovic, the Australian Open has been a place of joy for the most part. But 2014 was different. As always he was entertaining with his impressions, but his play didn’t quite live up to the expectations of his new coach, Boris Becker. The eventual champion, Stanislas Wawrinka got the best of the previous years’ winner with play that some called nothing less than magical. Here’s an example:
3. Relentless Rafa
There is no player around today with the everlasting endurance and perseverance of Rafael Nadal, but injury has given him problems over the years. 2014 was another test for Rafa, and when pictures of Nadal’s appalling blisters in his hand came out, fans prayed hard for his good health. Blisters and all, Rafa still produced some amazing tennis, reaching the finals before the injury, as well as Wawrinka’s rare and perfect form got the best of him. His frequent medical timeouts often had the crown booing him, but classy as always, he wins them back with an emotional “thank you very much” runner up speech:
2. Lucky Li Na
Li Na had already had the Australian crowd on her side year with her indomitable spirit in 2013, and in 2014, the 31-year-old Chinese woman reached the finals for a lucky 3rd time. Li finally managed to add another Grand Slam to her trophy case after her 2011 French Open victory. Coming into the tournament a fourth seed, Li has been one of the most consistent players on the WTA tour. After losing to Kim Clijsters in 2011 and Victoria Azarenka in 2013, Li fended off a brave challenge from the dark-horse Dominika Cibulkova in the final to finally put her hands on the glittering trophy. Li Na retired in 2014, and we were certainly sad to say goodbye.
1. Stan the Man
Stanislas Wawrinka created history becoming the first 8 seed or lower to win a Grand Slam since the French Open in 2004. Wawrinka played the best tennis of his life to win his first Major, and became the first person to defeat both Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal in a Major. For the most part of his career Wawrinka has been over-shadowed by his fellow Swiss compatriot Roger Federer and now Fedex fans are rejoicing his victory as one of their own .2014 gave him his own day in the sunshine.