Just a couple of weeks ago I watched Elina Svitolina live in Birmingham. I missed her match against Donna Vekic to begin the week but was impressed with her win against Alize Cornet in the following round.
On the Thursday she came up against Mihaela Buzarnescu and despite being strong from the baseline the struggle was going to the net and this was something I saw against Cornet in the previous round.
Elina is so good at the baseline; whether she is pulling that excellent backhand or forehand she is strong there hence 8 of her 12 titles coming on hard courts and the other 4 on clay.
Her form has been a bit up and down lately and the defeats to Tatijana Maria and two against Buzarnescu has highlighted that need to improve her game coming to the net if she wants to be considered a contender on all surfaces and consistently I think she needs to improve this part of her game.
When I watched her against Buzarnescu in particular I felt like she knew what she needed to do to progress in the rally and win the point but got stuck in two minds.
She worked points well and got to the position to then mix it up with slicing and drop shots but she looked in two minds and also lacked any anticipation.
When I saw this against Cornet, I was slightly confused. The feet and that shot were just a bit all over the place.
I don’t really know what it comes down to… confidence, trust?
Whatever it is there does need to be an improvement going forward, this year in my opinion she should be contender the latter stages of the major tournaments and I do think and hope that will be the case at New York.