Patrick Mouratoglou

Azaranka can dominate – if she can work out Serena

Patrick Mouratoglou

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Azarenka reacts after winning her quarter-final at the China Open in Beijing (Reuters)

With the 2012 season now over, it's time to look back over the past 12 months and look ahead to what the next year of women's tennis holds.

On Victoria Azarenka's pursuit of domination

Azarenka has huge qualities. Her ability to improve year on year is the most apparent. 2012 proved that she had become still more dangerous than the year before.

But, for the moment, her path is blocked by Serena Williams: they've played five times and Serena has won all five.

In order to go on and dominate world tennis, she needs to regularly beat the top five women in the world - and that means Serena. She's capable of doing that, taking into account her form in 2012 and her capacity to improve.

Petra Kvitova still has enormous potential, even if her results in 2012 were somewhat deceptive, and she also has the potential to bar Azarenka's route.

That said, if Victoria manages to find a solution to her problems against Serena, she could certainly dominate the circuit for many years to come. But at the moment, that's not the case.

On Serena's Grand Slam

What she has achieved over the last six months certainly argues in her favour. She has shown an exceptional level of play during that period.

But that does not give any guarantees for the future, as other players are progressing. Serena must also improve.

Her objective will not be to achieve the Grand Slam; in the short term it is to win the Australian Open and then the French Open. She is motivated to do so. But she must make the necessary effort to achieve these goals.

She also needs to be better than the others. In the last six months, she was way above them, but I repeat: this does not guarantee anything for the future.

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