Rajeev Ram thread...

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Rajeev Ram thread...

Postby nkoth » Wed Apr 16, 2003 7:14 am

Yeah yeah, he doesn't play for India... But I'm still following him closely!   :D 

Great article on him and the Illinois college team he plays for...
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/inside ... m_insider/

-neil
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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Wed Apr 16, 2003 8:01 am

He seems to be a good guy and I do look at how he is doing, but till he at least comes to India to play something or show some sort of an interest in anything to do with Indian tennis, I have decided not to report on Rajeev a whole lot in my notes. If he does something really note-worthy, I will of course mention it.

He has had a really strong start to the college career. Almost surely the freshman of the year this year.

Jay
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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Wed Apr 16, 2003 8:23 am

Just read that article by Jon Wertheim. And he points out one of the things I had said as a criticism of U.of.Illinois in one of my earlier posts (may be in the old forum) - that their indoors play and coaching style do not really help their players learn the baseline grind that becomes so important by the time things heat up in late spring with outdoors play and the NCAA tournament rolls around. I have followed Illinois somewhat closely during the time Harsh was at the Univ of Minnesota, in the same conference.

I even said (may be in my less informed opinion) that Rajeev should have gone to a place where his baseline game and backhands could improve. Not a big surprise that Rajeev has done well indoors, actually. Can he do that at the same level on slow outdoors - I am not sure. The one time I saw him play (at the Costa Mesa futures), I thought his backhand was not a strength, to put it mildly. If I am not mistaken, he was the only US junior in the whole top-50 or so who used a one-handed backhand. If he turns into a Sampras with that backhand stroke (heck, he might! - I am not joking), I will shut up. Otherwise, I will put more money on somebody like Prakash in the long run. Just a gut feeling from me. But, I know much less tennis than Rajeev and a lot of top people who have advised him in the US. I still think going to U of I was at least a risk. I have also read some criticism of the style of tennis that Craig Tiley coaches - but the article is right about how far he has brought that program. May be they will indeed win a title one of these years like USC last year (and another Indian freshman will end up as the tournament MVP like Prakash last time), and UI will make a believer of me.

But all the best to Rajeev, despite all that I am saying.

Jay

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby nkoth » Wed Apr 16, 2003 3:32 pm

No, you're right -- it's best to be cautious and not get completely over-excited at this early stage. On the flip side, I doubt he's going to stay at U of I for that long, so any problems he might have with conditioning and different surfaces will certainly be exposed relatively quickly. That said, provided he gets the right coaching on the circuit, there's no reason he couldn't get himself into contention as an all-around player... But I guess we just have to wait and see. We'll definitely have to see about that one-handed backhand.

-neil

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby BSharma » Thu Apr 17, 2003 12:23 am

I have also followed Rajeev Ram's tennis career for the past few years and I am not sure why he went to the University of Illinois but he and his parents must have had a very good reason. US colleges do not produce many top 40 players so Rajeev is not going to spend all 4 years there. He is too good to waste his talent playing college tennis for 4 years.

The article about him stated,
Ram, a silky, versatile player who finished in the top 300 in the ATP Champions Race last year and who soon will be a credible pro, often plays in the fourth singles position for Illinois.


Rajeev plays either the number one or two position on the team and has played the number three position a couple of times and the number 4 position once this season. The Sports Illustrated article author should have checked the Univ of Illinois tennis website or the NCAA tennis site before degrading Rajeev Ram's stature on the team. His record is 19-2 in singles and 16-3 in doubles (playing mainly number 1 or 2 doubles), and is currently ranked #14 in singles and #16 in doubles in NCAA. He is the highest ranked freshman. I wish we can have two players with Indian connection winning the MVP award back to back (Prakash did it last year).

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Rajeev Ram

Postby gvhvhg » Fri Jun 06, 2003 4:55 pm

I recently saw RR playing on
ESPN. College tennis.

WHAT A SERVE. it IS sampreas like!

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby nkoth » Tue Jun 10, 2003 12:00 am

Rajeev lost in the 2nd round of qualifiers at the Atlantic City Challenger this week (see misc players thread for score) but is also playing doubles.

[R1] Rajeev Ram/Bobby Reynolds (USA) vs (WC)Ben Kronk/Dean Yimoyines, Jr. (USA)

Glad he was able to get Bobby Reynolds on his side of the net -- they should be a formidable duo!

-neil

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Fri Jun 20, 2003 11:14 pm

Wondering how fast Rajeev could move up in ATP, and trying to compare with Leander's progress, the omnipresent Anonymous1 asked in the locked Rajeev Ram thread about when LP reached top 200 ..

LP was in the top 300 at age 18, by the end of 1991 (same year he won USO juniors).. He crossed into 200 just a couple of months before turning 20 in 1993. Fell out briefly, but by the end of 1993 he was in top-200 for good. Then started the plateau where he was in the 125-175 range for over 4 years. Crossed top-120 by late 97 at age 24, and was in the top-100 only for a few months in the latter part of 98, if I remember correctly ...

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby BSharma » Sun Jun 22, 2003 12:09 am

Rajeev Ram and Brian Wilson are in the finals of the USA F15 at Chico, California. They play Lesley Joseph/Dirk Stegmann (USA/RSA) in the finals today.

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby BSharma » Tue Jun 24, 2003 1:09 am

In the doubles final of USA F15 on Sunday June 22nd, third-seeded Rajeev Ram and Brian Wilson defeated Lesley Joseph and Dirk Stiegmann 6-4, 6-4.

Are Indians born with a "doubles" gene for tennis? :D

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Tue Jun 24, 2003 1:34 am

Indians are strong in shotmaking. Almost every successful Indian tennis player has become successful because of their ability to create shots and winners. A bit of it is natural genetic talent for the finer details (or simply "finesse") that Indian have, and the mental ability to create that quickly. A lot more of it is because many of our coaches being old-school in their thinking and still teaches grasscourt tennis even on hard and claycourts. Anyway, this is of use in doubles.

I think the deficiencies in the Indians' games become apparent in singles on a larger court which requires better ground strokes, quickness and power. We have rarely had people with world-class abilities in even two of those requisites. Hence our problem in singles.

What has contuinued to sadden me is that, except for quickness which sometimes requires God-given genetics like in LP's case, the other two requisites can be coached and trained, and we just seem unable to pull that off.

How Rajeev Ram seems to be quite a bit of an Indian style player (though a lot better coached) is interesting, as he grew up in the US. May be his father moulded him that way earlier on...

Jay

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Tue Jul 08, 2003 3:04 am

At the $380K Newport Hall of Fame ATP singles qualies,

[Q1] (7)Rajeev Ram (USA) d. Trent Aaron (USA) 6-2 6-4
[Q2] (7)Rajeev Ram (USA) d. Bo Hodge (USA) 7-6(8) 2-6 6-0
[Q3] (7)Rajeev Ram (USA) l. Thomas Shimada (JPN) 16 46

So, no cigar for Rajeev. He has not had a "break-out" event like many have been expecting for a while.

He is in the doubles main draw with Prakash --
[R1] P.AMRITRAJ (IND)/ R.RAM (USA) vs Julian KNOWLE (AUT)/ Jurgen MELZER (AUT)

They play tomorrow (Tuesday) night out there.

Jay

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby jayakris » Fri Jul 11, 2003 12:25 am

Here is an article on Rajeev Ram in last sunday's indian express by Chandresh Narayan

Paes-Bhupathi is cliche, he’s not

I don't exactly understand the title of the article .. Anyway, Rajeev says clearly that he has no India plans. This I knew for about 2-3 years actually .. Interesting that his last trip to India was when he was 5 .. That tells you how/why he would not have any reason to think of India, let alone play for India. I think the boy is very nice and is candid in what he says.

.. on the other hand, much as I want him to do very well in the US, something has been telling me for a while that he may not become as highly-ranked a player as people thought he would, a couple of years back .. I hope I am wrong. He will quite possibly be top-200 or top-100, one would think still.

Jay

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Rajeev Ram thread...(Dallas Challenger!)

Postby nkoth » Fri Jul 11, 2003 4:47 am

Agreed that he seems to have hit a plateau right now... We'll see if he can make a breakthrough at some point.

Is he planning on returning to the U of Illinois in the fall, or just go pro?

-neil


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