Two potentially excellent semi finals later tonight. The match between Coco and Keys stands out, both having come on leaps and bounds from where they were earlier in the summer, both wielding high-profile supercoaches, both with history of fragility.
What I've noticed is Coco paractising 'mindfulness exercises' during the changeovers (and if you watch carefully, even between the points). I've gone on one of these courses myself up here in Scotland, on a little island called the Holy isle. It's very interesting and can have dramatic effects. One central goal is being able to be 'in the moment'. Now some players (Serena springs to mind) can stay in the moment with ease anyway but Coco has had more than a tendency to lose perspective and find it impossible to 'reset' till she's back in the locker room.
But in this tournament she has dramatically improved her ability to stay in the moment. (Compared to the red mist of Wimbledon for example!) Lots of credit going to Pat cash, personally I'm sceptical. I believe she may have found a guru (a proper one, not a tennis guru!) that has set her mind up effectively, and when you see her doing her exercises that's her plugging in to that programming and the moment.
So what about the match. I tipped up keys to win the event before the US open started and I'm not backing away from that, but I do think this will be much more of a tussle than some expect. Lots of short points, lots of power and the atmosphere will be quite unique also, the crowd won't really take sides I suspect, they will cheer all four in celebration of the all US semis. Coco didn't really settle in her match with Pliskova and only really played a handful of points really well (they happened to be the big points though!) Tonight she will be off the leash, going for more winners while keeping herself grounded 'in the moment'. I don't see her going away this time (though both of them may/will have chokey blippy periods, they've both shown they can reset)
So Over 21.5 games might be the way to go here. Thoughts welcome and gl all, could be a cracker of a night