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"Climbing the Comeback Mountain with the Tower of Tandil."

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Archive for the ‘estoril’ Category

Shtoo-rill IV: Everyone Else

Posted by gauloises1 on April 28, 2011

And now for a melange of other people from the past few days, again courtesy of Pedro Mendes. (He also gives me lifts in his car. He’s like the perfect man.)

Antonio Van Grichen, checking out the craic. Again.

The lovely Bella Bellucci in his match against Frederik Nielsen. He’s in the quarter-finals tomorrow against Pablo Cuevas and keeps wandering past looking infuriatingly handsome when no-one has a camera to hand. Rude.

A small selection of photos of the beautiful Jarmila Gajdosova  (who I also wrote about for tennis.com) from her matches against Voracova and Dellacqua.

Igor Andreev, who was not loving life against Milos Raonic.

Milos Raonic himself, who’s just incredibly impressive in person and is about to take the court against local wildcard Joao Sousa.

Casey Dellacqua, who showed flashes of her old ball-striking in her defeat yesterday to Jarka G. Nice to see her back.

 

Sloane Stephens, who impressed in her defeat to Monica Niculescu. She’s going to be a thing.

Monica Niculescu, who annoyed in her victory over Sloane Stephens.

Romana Oprandi. No words.

Frederico Gil with doubles buddy and pal Leonardo Tavares. Wee Fred, as I’ve started to call him, is a huge star here in Estoril; he’s the highest-ranked player Portugal has ever produced and was their first player to make it to a final at this very tournament last year. He gets mobbed while the likes of Tsonga and Soderling walk past unnoticed. It’s lovely.

Jo himself, who lost to Pablo Cuevas yesterday but was the soul of graciousness in his presser, insisting that Cuevas just played too well. Well played, Jo. Well, not actually well played, but you know what I mean.

Posted in estoril | 5 Comments »

Shtoo-rill III: Delpo Time!

Posted by gauloises1 on April 28, 2011

Here are some belated photos of JMDP from his first two matches against Sousa and Falla (courtesy once again of the legendary Pedro).

After an initial wobble against Sousa, JMDP looked terrifyingly solid against Falla yesterday and now faces Robin Soderling in the quarter-finals tomorrow. I wrote a sort of thing about that match here on tennis.com; by way of prediction, let me say that on on-court form, JMDP will win. On practice court form, Robin will win. Either way, it’s going to be exciting …

Here is the transcript of yesterday’s (very short) press conference …

Your level today, was it even better than yesterday and how pleased are you?

Yes, I played much better today. I feel confidence with my game and basically with my serve. Always it’s tough to play against this kind of player but I made a good match, I go through and hopefully be ready to play against Soderling.

You’ve beaten him on all surfaces but never clay. What are you thinking of for the next match?

Well, for me, I think it’s going to be different here with different weather, different surface. He’s playing really well this season, he made fantastic results on clay and he’s playing really good tennis. Of course I will try to beat him but I will need to be focused during the match all the time and try to take my opportunities and be in good shape to beat him.

How close do you feel you are to the kind of form you had in 2009, and what aspects of your game need to get better, do you think?

I don’t know, I’m trying to come back at a good level. I think I’m improving very fast and I don’t know if I can play like I did in 2009 or not; maybe I can play worse, or better, this year. But I know it’s a long road to be safety [sic], to be healthy and play on all surfaces against all the players and at a good level too. But I am trying to improve my game, and improve my body, my physique and I will see if I’m ready to play again.

Guess who asked the final, idiotic question? Yes, that’s right. I did. In fairness, I wasn’t expecting to say anything. In fact, I thought seriously that I wasn’t going in for fear of crying or falling over or spontaneously combusting. But then he walked in, all giant and … giant with his tousled hair, and I couldn’t resist. And then nobody else had any questions after the first two and, well, I couldn’t let him leave thinking he wasn’t wanted. In fact, I couldn’t let him leave.

So I said a question, the only question which occurred to me at that point (apart from “So, Juan Martin, how are you so GIANT and AMAZING?!”), and he answered me looking at me all the time with his amazing green eyes – which, in person, are up close and amazing. And I pretended to scribble notes in my notebook and audibly giggled when he said he needed to improve his body, and thanked him very politely after he finished, and then went off and died in a corner.

Oh, and you don’t get the full humiliating force of this story until you realise that I was sunburned at the time, but only on the bits I’d missed with my factor 50, while the rest of my skin continues to be blinding white.

And that is the story of probably the one and only time I will ever get to be in a room with Juan Martin del Potro, let alone have him speak to me or look at me with his huge, amazing green eyes. (Seriously, I think I’m pregnant. With a green baby.) But just in case I do catch him tomorrow (my last day), can anyone think of any sensible/witty/incisive questions I should ask him?

Apart from “So, Juan Martin, how are you so GIANT and AMAZING?!”. Because he is.

Posted in estoril, juan martin del potro | Tagged: | 11 Comments »

Shtoo-rill II: The Verdasconing

Posted by gauloises1 on April 26, 2011

Hey, so. I wrote a thing about Heather Watson for tennis.com and another thing about Alisa Kleybanova which should be up soon. But because I love you, here’s some more pictures courtesy (and copyright) of the fantastic Pedro Mendes of the goings-on in Estoril.

Jarmila Gajdosova sexing it up.

Pablo Cuevas. Likewise.

The very cute Tiago Fernandes, who will one day be a thing, mark my words.

Heather Watson, a.k.a. Our Hev, who had a really tough match today against Tamira Paszek and missed qualifying into the main draw. She was understandably gutted, but we won’t forget her.

Adrian Mannarino and Gaston Elias respectively, both of whom lost today.

Antonio Van Grichen, coach of Vika, Vera and Ivanovic, checking out the craic.

Jo and Marc Gicquel checking out the Chardy-Mannarino match.

Bendy Robin, who has been just a beast on the practice courts.

Dimple close-up during the practice match with Verdasco. Believe me, it wasn’t Verdasco’s tennis that was worrying him.

Verdasco wringing out his shirt. Love the expression on Robin’s face in the second photo.

Verdasco using the world as his washing line. He was not looking good in practice today, I’m told. Tennistically, that is.

Gilles and Yves Allergo playing doubles on Centralito. They lost to Pablo Andujar and Daniel Gimeno-Traver, but the most entertaining part of the match was waiting for Gilles to explode in frustration. Which he duly did, yelling “Ah, this fucking bitch of a line!” during the second set. Comedy gold.

Posted in estoril | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

Shtoo-rill

Posted by gauloises1 on April 23, 2011

That’s how you pronounce ‘Estoril’, apparently, and that’s where I am, havin’ it large (and sometimes small). I’m doing some writing for other sources but I thought you’d appreciate some photo content.

No, they’re not my photos. I didn’t bring a camera – at least, not one that I can hook up to a computer. (I’m bringing the disposable camera back.) These are courtesy of the fantastic Pedro Mendes and I’m sure you’ll agree he’s a handy man with a lens.

The omnipresent Jeremy Chardy, daring you not to look at his bulge.

The very beautiful Jarmila Groth Gajdisova at the draw ceremony.

The very lovely Heather Watson, who had a great win in qualifying aganst Karolina Sprem and was then nice enough to chat to me afterwards. Forgot to ask if she would be stalking Delpo though.

Speaking of which …

The big man was on cheerful form in practice today, generally goofing around and being a bit lazy. He was cracking those forehands, though. And was promptly engulfed by a crowd of autograph-seeking kids as he left the court.

… No comment.  

(These photos belong to Pedro Mendes, so please don’t steal them.)

Posted in estoril, heather watson, jarmila groth, jeremy chardy, juan martin del potro | Tagged: , , , | 8 Comments »

Climb Every Montanes

Posted by gauloises1 on May 9, 2010

Albert Montanes d. Frederico Gil, 62 67(4) 75

Congratulations to Albert Montanes on defending his Estoril Open title, and commiserations to Frederico Gil, who wasn’t able to build on his achievement of becoming the first Portuguese man to reach an ATP tour final and deliver the trophy for his home crowd. I didn’t see the match, so I’ll turn instead to naughty T, official NB agent provocateur and attender-of-Estoril, who summed up Gil’s performance in the final as “ripping victory from the jaws of defeat and then shoving it back down its throat”. Wise words.

Still cute though.

Anastasija Sevastova d. Arantxa Parra Santonja, 62 75

Just when you thought all there was to Latvian tennis was Ernests Gulbis, Anastasija Sevastova pops up to take her maiden WTA singles title. I’ve never seen her play but she’s had some solid results this year and it’s worth remembering that last year we also had a maiden titlist in Estoril who nobody had ever really heard of. Her name? Yanina Wickmayer. I’m just saying.

The Latvian Sharapova?

Posted in albert montanes, anastasija sevastova, estoril, frederico gil, titlists | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Americans in Belgrade, Marin in Munich, F(r)ed in Estoril

Posted by gauloises1 on May 9, 2010

So here’s the state of play. Somewhat ironically, there’ll be an all-American final in Belgrade.

 John Isner had a great win over Stanislas Wawrinka and Sam Querrey disposed of little Filip Krajinovic, in his first ATP semi-final courtesy of Novak Djokovic’s withdrawal. He lost 61 62 in front of his home crowd.

Welcome to the wonderful world of the ATP!

In Munich, Marin Cilic has somehow cobbled enough wins together to be in the final. Yes, it’s one of those weeks. He actually played really well against Marcos Baghdatis today and got better as the match went on, which is, I suppose, a good thing.

It’ll be Mikhail Youzhny facing him in the final, after Youzhny disposed of Philipp Petzchner who had knocked out the defending champion Tomas Berdych. Youzhny is up 3 -0 in the head-to-head with Cilic, by the way. I’m just saying.

And the shock of the day in Estoril was Roger Federer’s 62 76(5) loss to Albert Montanes, the defending champion, in Estoril. It was a rain-delayed day, the conditions were terrible and for whatever reason, Federer just didn’t adapt at all. It was a mystifyingly lame performance from him, although he insists he isn’t worried – his post-match comments basically added up to ‘meh, these things happen’. I was fairly impressed with Montanes, though, who didn’t let either the conditions or the unexpected lack of resistance throw him off and is now in an excellent position to defend his title.

 

Lost in the Federer shuffle, however, has been the fact that Frederico Gil has become the first Portuguese player to reach an ATP final and he’s done it on his home ground, beating Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 62 57 63. Heartwarming stuff.

Posted in albert montanes, belgrade, estoril, filip krajinovic, frederico gil, john isner, marin cilic, mikhail youzhny, munich, roger federer | Tagged: , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Sunday Champs: Djokovic, Berdych, Montanes

Posted by gauloises1 on May 10, 2009

Albert Montanes d. James Blake, 57 76(6) 60

montanes

Congratulations to Albert Montanes, who rallied from match point down to claim his second ATP title over James Blake.

montanes trophy

It was a tough ask for Blake, who had already done well earlier in the day to finish his match against Davydenko and come out with the win. Incidentally, is he still working with Barker? I didn’t see him around this week.

montanes blake

Tomas Berdych d. Mikhail Youzhny 64 46 76(5)

berdych1

Great result for Berdych. He’s making a fricking habit of beating guys I like in finals. I might bold his name on my hate list. And that’s serious business.

berdych

Priss.

Novak Djokovic d. Lukas Kubot 63 76(0)

nole2

Did anyone really expect a different result? Surprised how close the scoreline was, anyway. But well done to Nole on winning the inaugural Nole Open. And I’m not being THAT sarcastic. Look how happy he is.

kubot

BRAAAAAAAAAAAINS.

Seriously, he’s dead behind the eyes.

nole kubot

Is that trophy a mirror or a gateway to another dimension?

Posted in albert montanes, belgrade, estoril, james blake, lukaz kubot, mikhail youzhny, munich, novak djokovic, titlists, tomas berdych | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Estoril, Munich, Belgrade Finals

Posted by gauloises1 on May 10, 2009

First up, congratulations to Yanine Wickmayer of Belgium (a.k.a. the Belgian Sharapova … apparently), who won her first WTA singles title in Estoril when she defeated Ekaterina Makarova 75 62.

wickmayer

She played a solid, focussed match and seeing someone get their first title is always lovely. Well done, Yanine.

Unfortunately rain messed up the rest of the day’s play in Estoril. The first ATP finalist is Albert Montanes, who beat Capdeville 3 and 4. The second semifinal was rained off with Blake a set down but a break up on Davydenko, so it’s all still to be decided.

blake

In Munich, both semifinals went to 3 sets, but Youzhny and Berdych – somewhat predictably – managed it in the end over local wildcard and hitherto total unknown Brands, and Chardy respectively.

berdych

And at the Nole Open, all our worst fears have come true.

kubot

HE WILL EAT YOUR BRAINS.

NB: All the above was crafted while massively drunk and is probably not true.

Posted in belgrade, estoril, james blake, lukaz kubot, munich, titlists, tomas berdych, yanina wickmayer | Tagged: , , , | 13 Comments »

Friday Results: Munich, Estoril, Belgrade

Posted by gauloises1 on May 8, 2009

Yeah, I’m combining the men into one post. You know why? They weren’t as interesting as the women today, and that’s the fact of the matter. You want equal column inches, then you be equally compelling and watchable. I can’t be having with this New Age equal-rights-for-the-ATP nonsense.

Oh yeah, and pretty much everyone I wanted to win today … didn’t.

Estoril

Makarova beat Groenefeld fairly straightforwardly for her second straight final, where she will play the Belgian Sharapova (apparently) after Peer was forced to retire after three games. And on the ATP side; Blake won, Gilles lost. Are you getting the ‘today sucks’ theme yet?

gilles

An apt pictorial representation of Gilles’ season thus far.

Singles – Semifinals
(6) Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) d. (8) Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER) 63 61
Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) d. (7) Shahar Peer (ISR) 30 ret. (right foot injury)

Doubles – Semifinals
(3) Kops-Jones/Spears (USA/USA) d. Coin/Pelletier (FRA/CAN) 36 75 103
Fichman/Marosi (CAN/HUN) d. Diatchenko/Dzehalevich (RUS/BLR) 64 46 107

Singles – Quarter-finals
[7] A Montanes (ESP) d [1] [WC] G Simon (FRA) 57 64 76(4) – saved 1 M.P.
[2] N Davydenko (RUS) d [6] M Fish (USA) 64 63
[4] J Blake (USA) d [8] F Serra (FRA) 64 61
P Capdeville (CHI) d O Hernandez (ESP) 46 61 64

Doubles – Semi-finals
E Butorac (USA) / S Lipsky (USA) d [3] F Cermak (CZE) / M Mertinak (SVK) 63 63
[4] M Damm (CZE) / R Lindstedt (SWE) d W Moodie (RSA) / D Norman (BEL) 64 46 10-7

Munich

Thanks for nothing, Marin. At least Chardy’s pretty. What’s your excuse, Rusty Potatoes?

berdy

brands

Singles – Quarter-finals
J Chardy (FRA) d [2] M Cilic (CRO) 36 75 64
[4] T Berdych (CZE) d [WC] L Hewitt (AUS) 46 63 76(4)
M Youzhny (RUS) d [7] P Mathieu (FRA) 75 36 63
[WC] D Brands (GER) d P Starace (ITA) 64 11 ret. – right hamstring

Doubles – Semi-finals
[2] A Fisher (AUS) / J Kerr (AUS) d [4] R Bopanna (IND) / T Parrott (USA) 76(2) 64

Belgrade

At the Nole Serbia Open, Karlovic, Seppi and Nole all progressed to the semis. In even LESS interesting news … can someone explain to me how Kubot is still in the tournament? Seriously?

nole

Posting a picture of Kubot would only encourage him in his sinister plans for world domination.

Singles – Quarter-finals
[2] I Karlovic (CRO) d [Q] F Cipolla (ITA) 63 63
[4] A Seppi (ITA) d M Daniel (BRA) 64 75
[LL] L Kubot (POL) d K Vliegen (BEL) 76(6) 63
[1] N Djokovic (SRB) d [5] V Troicki (SRB) 63 62

Doubles – Quarter-finals
[2] L Kubot (POL) / O Marach (AUT) d [WC] N Ciric (SRB) / D Savic (SRB) 64 36 10-8
R Wassen (NED) / I Zelenay (SVK) d [4] S Aspelin (SWE) / P Hanley (AUS) 64 64
M Granollers (ESP) / S Ventura (ESP) d [3] S Huss (AUS) / R Hutchins (GBR) 76(4) 16 10-7
[WC] M Djokovic (SRB) / D Madjarovski (SRB) vs J Brunstrom (SWE) / J Rojer (AHO)

Posted in belgrade, daniel brands, estoril, gilles simon, munich, novak djokovic, tomas berdych | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

OOPsydaisy: Rome, Estoril, Munich, Belgrade

Posted by gauloises1 on May 8, 2009

Rome

Stadio Pietrangeli (from 11.00hrs)
1. Hsieh/Peng vs. Senoglu/Shvedova
2. Kuznetsova vs. Azarenka (NB 13.30hrs)
3. Safina vs. V.Williams (NB 16.00hrs)
4. Hantuchova/Sugiyama vs. Llagostera Vives/Martínez Sánchez

Estoril

Central (from 11.15hrs)
1. Groenefeld vs. Makarova
2. ATP: Fish vs. Davydenko (NB 13.55hrs)
3. ATP: Serra vs. Blake (NB 16.15hrs)
4. ATP: Damm/Lindstedt vs. Moodie/Norman

Centralito (from 11.30hrs)
1. Peer vs. Wickmayer
2. ATP: Hernández vs. Capdeville (NB 13.00hrs)
3. ATP: Simon vs. Montañés
4. ATP: Butorac/Lipsky vs. Cermak/Mertinak

Court 1 (from 11.00hrs)
1. Diatchenko/Dzehalevich vs. Fichman/Marosi
2. Coin/Pelletier vs. Kops-Jones/Spears

Belgrade

CENTRE COURT
12:00 noon K.Vliegen (BEL) vs L. Kubot (POL)
 
Not before 2:00 PM F. Cipolla (ITA) and I. Karlovic (CRO)
 
A. Seppi (ITA) vs M. Daniel (BRA)
 
Not before 8:00 PM N. Djokovic (SRB) vs V. Troicki (SRB)
 
M.Djokovic (SRB)/D.Madjarovski (SRB) vs J.Brunstrom (SWE)/J-J.Rojer (AHO)
 
SHOW COURT 1
1:00 PM R.Wassen (NED)/I.Zelenay (SVK) vs S.Aspelin (SWE)/P.Hanley (AUS)
 
Not before 2:00 PM S.Huss (AUS)/R.Hutchins (GBR) vs M.Granollers (ESP)/S.Ventura (ESP)

5:00 PM N.Ciric (SRB)/D.Savic (SRB) vs L.Kubot (POL)/ O,Marach (AUT)

Munich can be found here.

Posted in belgrade, estoril, munich, rome | Leave a Comment »