By Matt Cronin
INDIAN WELLS – Defending champion Caroline Wozniacki enters the BNP Paribas Open with 1000 points to defend and few folks believing that she can pull herself up by her ponytail and win the tournament.
Last year, when she came to the California desert, she was in much better mental shape, having won Dubai, even though she had gagged her Aussie Open semi to Li Na.
But this time around, she is playing third fiddle, behind higher-ranked Slam champs Victoria Azarenka and Petra Kvitova, and even possibly behind Aga Radwanska, who sits at No. 5 behind her no. 4, but whom has had a much better stretch than she has since last August, winning four Premier outdoor hard courts tournaments.
The Dane is determined, which is one of her best qualities, but she also has to be realistic about her chances of meeting her goals, which is to win the next three majors and the Olympics, or just one of those four titles.
The fact is that her game is still undeveloped and she is not cracking her forehand enough on important points, not delivering enough hard and varied serves, and not pushing herself inside the court against opponents who are capable of hitting through her. There are not many of those, but there certainly are more than there were last year, as witnessed by her loss to Julia Gorges in Dubai.
So now, her task to is open herself up to the possibility of change, try some new things in practice and take those elements on court in matches and risk suffering losses.
Because as it stands today, if she doesn