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Craig's Interviews

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2015

Live & Wimbledon – Interview with Annabel Croft and Mats Wilander

  • Craig breaks down exactly how he defeated Rafael Nadal on Center Court at Wimbledon.

Bloomberg – Dustin Brown’s Moneybag Tactics defeat Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon

  • Focus: Craig’s role on Dustin Brown’s team in defeating Rafael Nadal on Center Court at Wimbledon.

ESPN – Dustin Brown: Tennis outlier, tennis intellect

  • What stood out to O’Shannessy was Brown’s focus on his opponent’s game rather than his own. O’Shannessy says eight or nine out of 10 players focus on their own game. Brown, though, “is on the good side of the coin.”

ESPN – Brown steals the limelight from Federer at Wimbledon

  • In addition, O’Shannessy suggested that it takes longer for a serve-volleyer to piece everything together than it might for a baseliner. “He has always looked to come forward, always looked to play what appear to be low-percentage patterns such as drop-shot returns. And hammering the second serve as hard, or even harder, than the first serve.

The Telegraph – Nadal dumped out of Wimbledon by inspired Dustin Brown

  • One of the great advantages Rafael Nadal has had in his brilliant career is that he does not really play like anyone else. It is hard dealing with a guy who hits such crazy top-spin when you only see that style a couple of times a year. How do you prepare? But Dustin is like that too, in a very different way.

ATP World Tour – Dustin’s Thai Dinner Plus Phone Overload

  • “Rafa doesn’t go to Plan B, mainly because he doesn’t have to.  I like to tell people that Dustin’s game is ‘organised chaos.’ We knew what he was going to do, we knew Nadal wasn’t going to come up with some great response to this, as he traditionally doesn’t. He serve-volleyed one point all match and won it. But he didn’t do it again. He didn’t show an urgency to come to the net, to take the court away from Dustin.”

The Guardian – Dustin Brown, a slow burner finally shining bring at Wimbledon 2015

  • Brown’s entourage is a fluid affair – Scott Wittenberg flew out to coach him after qualifying, and he enlists the ad hoc help of an ATP tour analyst, Craig O’Shannessy. “It’s loose and casual but that works, it fits,” says O’Shannessy

Tages Anzeiger – Angriff als beste Verteidigung – auch für Federer

  • A story of the Wimbledon Brown v Nadal match in a German newspaper.

New York Times – A Data Dinosaur, Tennis Tries an Analytic Approach

  • “The average player with a good coach can do a lot more damage now,” said Craig O’Shannessy, who runs a tennis strategy analysis company called the Brain Game and provides match analysis for the WTA, the ATP and The New York Times.

USA Today – Serena Williams v Maria Sharapova at the 2015 Australian Open

  • “When Maria’s performed badly she’ll get behind in a rally and she panics and then tries to hit down the line,” explains Craig O’Shannessy, a strategy analyst for the WTA, among other tennis entities. “One of the things that Maria can’t do is try and change the direction of the ball when she’s on defense. There are just too many errors when she’s attempting a defensive change of direction.”

USA Today – Serve v Venus at the 2015 US Open

  • O’Shannessy used Montreal stats as an example: There, Venus served 24 of 35 second serves to the Serena forehand, winning nearly 60% of those points, a percentage that O’Shannessy called “unheard of” against Serena. He concluded: “[Venus] not only went there a lot, she won there a lot as well. It was a gutsy move.”

Hungarian News – Training Camp Review

  • An overview of the November training camp in Budapest, in conjunction with the Hungarian Tennis Association.

More…

Wall Street Journal – The Sport That Forgot About Scouting

  • To prepare Ram for his first-round match against Johnson, O’Shannessy followed his usual practice: He found video of Johnson’s recent victory in the final of a Challenger tournament on YouTube, loaded it up on his iPad, trained his video camera on the iPad, hit play and went to bed. The next morning, he downloaded the video into Dartfish, a video analysis program.

Sports Illustrated – How Can Sharapova beat Williams?

  • It should be a rhetorical question. But it isn’t. Walking through the players’ lounge here, O’Shannessy, 46, goes unnoticed. He’s another tanned, fit-looking coach with a low-riding ballcap and works with two players, Rajeev Ram and Alex Kuznetsov. (Ram went from No. 272 to No. 93; Kuznetsov has risen 100 spots in the last six weeks.) But players should be lining up to avail themselves to his wisdom.

ABC Australia

  • "Tennis unfortunately is one of the worst sports in the world to pick up and take advantage of advanced metrics and advanced analysis. In America you have football, baseball, basketball... the very first thing they do after a game is they go and study the tape. Tennis doesn't do that very well."

 

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