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In the Eye of the Storm

Posted by gauloises1 on November 11, 2009

Juan Martin del Potro has apparently given an interview published today in L’Equipe where he talks about how unrepared he was for the aftermath of winning a Slam. Unfortunately, I’ve been stabbing ineffectually at the L’Equipe website on and off all day and I can’t find the bloody thing. But! I did find this from Clarin.


In the article (as far as I can tell from Google Translate), JMDP referred to the experience of being mobbed by the media and fans as ‘truly destabilising’ and says he barely saw his family when he returned to Argentina, his first chance to rest coming on the plane to Tokyo. He also said that he’s been isolating himself, practicing on a private indoor court on Buenos Aires to avoid attention, and that he once again needs to learn from the likes of Federer and Nadal because they don’t go and lose in the first round after winning a Slam. (So hard on himself!)

He also says his season has been ‘almost perfect’ and that winning the YEC (or Bercy, I’m not sure what he’s referring to) would make it perfect.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that he lost his doubles with Gonzo today. I was avidly watching the scoreboard and deduced that it was all Gonzo’s fault.

UPDATED: Proper translation of the article in the comments, courtesy of AmyLu. Thanks!

18 Responses to “In the Eye of the Storm”

  1. kefuoe said

    You are right about it being Gonzo’s fault. A commentator said that he has never won a match at this tournament.

  2. AmyLu said

    Google Translate did well with the article, but here’s a loose translation if anyone is interested:

    He’s discovered that one of the biggest dangers he faces as a young star is life outside the court. A situation that he perceived more than ever after winning the US Open. He found himself in a media hurricane, which can be very destabilizing if you’re unprepared. He knew that winning a Grand Slam was going to be an immense physical and mental effort, but he was not prepared for what happened after. During his last stop in Argentina, he barely saw his parents and sister (it was surreal), and he was finally able to rest on the plane to Tokyo.

    He trained in a private indoor court in Argentina to escape the media and the fans. He isolated himself, became very small (wanted to disappear), and that only recently has he been able to train properly for the end of the season. He wants to play well at the end of the season, in Paris, and especially in the Masters (referring to London), even if he’s not in the best shape. It’s been almost a perfect season up to now, but it would be perfect if I win the Masters (referring to the WTF in London).

    It’s been the most tiring season for him, he’s never really played that many matches in a season. It’s been a great experience, and he should take advantage of it so he can improve even more. He can’t get stuck, and he has to look at Federer and Nadal because they don’t lose in the first round like I did in Tokyo.

    • gauloises1 said

      Oh, thank you AmyLu! (And JJ, I assume.)

      That makes me feel really sorry for him. It must be incredibly overwhelming. I hope he can get past it.

      • AmyLu said

        You’re welcome — and I’m proud to say that I actually translated parts of it myself (although JJ did big chunks of it and looked over my parts to make sure I was right) 🙂

        I feel sorry for him too. And I hope he can take comfort in the fact that other players found it really overwhelming so he’s not the only one (this portion of Sampras’ autobiography was really interesting to me). And, Rafa did actually lose the first match he played after he won his first French Open — he lost his opening match in Halle in 2005. So he really can try to emulate Rafa — he hasn’t lose his next match since that point, which hopefully will be the case for the Elf too.

        • gauloises1 said

          That is such a comforting fact! Can’t believe Rafa was actually useful for something. (Just kidding. Sort of.)

          And congratulations on the translation competence 🙂

  3. Aleksa said

    Sigh. Want to hug BumbleBee. And rub his tummy. And lip-comb his eyebrows.

    Now, I am bummed really. It must be unbearable at times and incredibly overwhelming.
    I have experienced it already, highs and lows, agony and relief, with Novak.
    The first and foremost.

  4. irefusetotellyou said

    This makes me really depressed, although I guess I had already assumed that he was overwhelmed and probably stressed out from all the press and such.

    But, anyway. ‘Truly destabilising.’ = sad face x 100000000000000000000000000

    Oh, JMDP. You can come to my secluded bedroom any time at all. (Er, I’m not helping the situation with my obsession, am I?)

  5. Saoirse said

    This makes me so sad… What should have been a moment of great happiness and celebration (winning the USO) turned into a media circus and just added even more pressure on his young shoulders to perform and deliver. Surely it can’t be easy. Everything that shines is not gold, I guess.

    Reading this just reminded me of the really sweet article from last month’s Times where he described himself and his family as quiet, introverted, reserved kind of people, homebodies enjoying the tranquil life at home…

    And now he has to deal with people like us throwing their knickers at him. Poor thing. I take part of the blame… I am so sorry Elfie, but although I am guilty as charged, I just can’t help myself wanting to rip off that red hot hoodie and ravage you again and again… But I digress.

  6. imtotallyrad said

    aww the wonder boys lost at doubles?! =( thats so sad as is this article and also the part from i read of his from “La Legión habla” were he said his missed his family and how hard it all is and how he wanted to give it all up…it all makes me feel very sad for poor juan-osaurus and i to want to give him a big hug and pat him on the head and tell him everything will be fine….awwwww so sad

  7. Cubbie/Carrie said

    Awww…poor little Elf. But it seems like he has a really good (overwhelmed) head on his shoulders. I have always felt that he has some good brains from reading about how he did well in high school and was excited to graduate with his class while being on the road. I think this smartness and groundiness may help him.

    But awww…wanting to appear small. Bless…

  8. Jess said

    JMdP should consult Marat (what you should not do when wining GS at young age) after tonight match.

  9. mina said

    aw poor baby. i wanna hug him too! okay maybe not just hug… um, can someone point me to the queue?

    the “truly destabilising” bit makes me think of Ana Ivanovic. love the girl, but after the FO that was pretty much how i saw her grapple with the immensity of it all.

    all the media and fandemonium surrounding his win makes me appreciate the ‘normal’ life Rafa loves about Mallorca…

  10. lauren said

    Safin is the benchmark for how it can all go wrong after a Slam win. He’s been very open about why he thinks it screwed up his career. Elf can at least reassure himself that he’s not going to go the same way.

    I still want to know who, in the midst of all the post-USO madness, convinced Elf to get new gnashers.

  11. mrdarnley said

    He is absolutely gorgeous. It sort of takes my breath away. I love new pictures of him and this one is great. Thanks. Please win today Delpo. Please.

  12. Nic said

    I suppose it’s going to be even worse when he get’s to his first slam after becoming a slam champion and doing it in the fashion he did. No more walking around the back courts unnoticed and unaccosted (you know, as unnoticed as a guy a full foot taller than the crow wearing a bumblebee costume can be).

    Also have decided that JMDP reminds me of Nicholas Cage in Moonstruck. As opposed to Nicholas Cage in any National Treasure films… Obviously big difference.

    • mrdarnley said

      Nicholas Cage? (anytime) ick. Don’t see it.

      • Nic said

        So it turns out it’s spelt ‘Nicolas’ (this after I typed it out 3 times and turned my head sideways to make it sink)

        And it’s no disrespect to the Elfman. There was just a moment when I thought of him while watching the movie. It could be that they both have monobrow, and stubble, and shoulders… I think it’s the teeth- before they got Hollywooded up.. Seriously, check out the teeth. It might just be the “vibe”. Or too much Delpo brainwashing.

  13. linex said

    Hi everyone and thanks amylu for the translation. I am so glad that he could somewhat get over his slump and defeat Marat today. it seems that they both have an excellent relationship because marat was so nice with him. In the final greeting with all the players marat even kissed juan martin.

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