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Posts Tagged ‘andy roddick’

Men’s Quarter-Finals Set at Indian Wells.

Posted by gauloises1 on March 17, 2011

Juan Martin del Potro and Tommy Robredo we know about. But who else is in the quarter-finals? Stunningly, these three:

Neither Roger nor Rafa had a particularly easy time of it during last night’s night session – which I didn’t watch because it was in the middle of the bloody night – as Ryan Harrison and Somdev Devvarman respectively put up a good fight, but they still won in straight sets and progress. It doesn’t quite match Djokovic’s frankly terrifying 60 61 victory over Viktor Troicki, but then what does? I’m starting to idly wonder if Nole kept on being unbeatable for the next, say, two years, whether I would eventually find it boring. I don’t think so.

Rafa will face Ivo Karlovic in the quarters after the Croatian with a mission beat Albert Montanes, 76(7) 62. I must admit I haven’t watched Karlovic since he upset Ferrer earlier in the tournament, but he does seem to be doing something right. The winner of that will meet either JMDP or Robredo.

Based on the fun last night, it looks as if Djokovic’s next match might finally be a challenge for him after Richard Gasquet completely outplayed Andy Roddick for a 63 76(5) victory. I can’t really do justice to the way Gasquet played except to say that it was a beautiful, brief shining reminder of exactly why we’ve all talked about this man forever. He backhanded Roddick to death, was cool and clutch in the biggest moments, and had the American so frustrated that he tossed his racquet more than once and attempted to give the umpire a warning for “freaking ineptitude”. I can understand his emotions at being so publicly trampled upon, but he doesn’t win my respect with that attitude – particularly because I don’t think he would have behaved like that if he’d been across the net from, say, Federer. Anyway, Gasquet moves on with a well-deserved victory, and if he brings the same form to the court against Djokovic, we could have a classic.

Completing the final eight is Stan Wawrinka, who has quietly been having a dead impressive tournament, proving too good for Nikolay Davydenko, Marin Cilic and Tomas Berdych in succession. It’s hard to put your finger on what separates top-flight Stan from regular Stan, and harder still to predict if he can bring it to the court against Federer, but if he does this could be another brilliant match. All in all, it’s a sensational quarter-finals lineup with the tantalising possibility of upsets. I’m excited.

Men

Singles – Fourth Round
[1] R Nadal (ESP) d [Q] S Devvarman (IND) 75 64
[2] R Federer (SUI) d [WC] R Harrison (USA) 76(4) 63
[3] N Djokovic (SRB) d [16] V Troicki (SRB) 60 61
[12] S Wawrinka (SUI) d [7] T Berdych (CZE) 36 64 64
[18] R Gasquet (FRA) d [8] A Roddick (USA) 63 76(5)
[25] T Robredo (ESP) d [21] S Querrey (USA) 61 63
I Karlovic (CRO) d [23] A Montanes (ESP) 76(7) 62
J Del Potro (ARG) d [32] P Kohlschreiber (GER) 76(3) 76(7)

Doubles – Quarter-finals
A Dolgopolov (UKR) / X Malisse (BEL) d A Murray (GBR) / J Murray (GBR) 67(7) 63 10-8
R Bopanna (IND) / A Qureshi (PAK) d N Djokovic (SRB) / V Troicki (SRB) 61 76(5)

OOP

STADIUM 1 start 11:00 am
[1] C Wozniacki (DEN) vs [8] V Azarenka (BLR) – WTA

Not Before 1:00 PM
J Del Potro (ARG) vs [25] T Robredo (ESP) – ATP

Not Before 3:00 PM
[16] M Sharapova (RUS) vs S Peng (CHN) – WTA
M Knowles (BAH) / M Mertinak (SVK) vs R Federer (SUI) / S Wawrinka (SUI) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
[1] R Nadal (ESP) vs I Karlovic (CRO) – ATP
D Hantuchova (SVK) / A Radwanska (POL) vs S Mirza (IND) / E Vesnina (RUS) – WTA

STADIUM 2 start :
Not Before 1:00 PM
[6] V Azarenka (BLR) / M Kirilenko (RUS) vs [8] B Mattek-Sands (USA) / M Shaughnessy (USA) – WTA – After Suitable Rest

Not Before 3:30 PM
A Dolgopolov (UKR) / X Malisse (BEL) vs R Bopanna (IND) / A Qureshi (PAK)

STADIUM 3 start 12:30 pm
R Turner (USA) vs V Verma (USA) – IWTG CHAMPIONSHIP 4.0
N Dechant (USA) vs R Romero (USA) – IWTG CHAMPIONSHIP 3.5

Posted in andy roddick, indian wells, ivo karlovic, novak djokovic, rafael nadal, richard gasquet, roger federer, stanislas wawrinka | Tagged: , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

The Week In Winners: Memphis Edition

Posted by gauloises1 on February 21, 2011

OK, I was putting this off, but I’m knackered and off early in the morning and I just can’t wait for more photos to come through right now.

Ladies first: it was a sad ending to an exceptional tournament for Rebecca Marino when she was forced to retire, trailing by a set, in the final due to an abdominal injury she sustained during the semi-final. The young Canadian and female Delpo was in tears on the court, but comported herself fairly well and gave a very nice, mature press conference that you can see here. So congratulations to Magdalena Rybarikova, who clearly decided to have one of her somewhat rare good weeks and certainly deserved the title.

 But let’s talk about tonight’s final between Milos Raonic and Andy Roddick, shall we? Actually, I don’t know if I can because I’m very tired and still buzzing too much from the match to be articulate about it. It’s easy, looking at the score (two tiebreaks and 75 in the third) that this was your basic big-serving contest coming down to a few clutch points here and there. And although the latter is true, it was such a fun match. Roddick, who was clearly suffering from a cold, followed on where he left off against Delpo, deciding to match Raonic in the neck-or-nothing (to paraphrase Georgette Heyer) department, and Raonic handled the entire match magnificently. Not for a moment did he look overawed by the occasion or, come to that, the second-best player even when he was trailing. Roddick said during the trophy presentation that he was outplayed for two and a half hours and just ‘hung in there’, and while that’s a little too self-deprecating, it also gives an accurate flavour of the match.

But then sometimes all you need to do is hang in there and seize your opportunity when it presents itself. Raonic after being down a break in the third set broke back, held fairly easily, pressed but was unable to get anywhere on Roddick’s serve, and looked as if he was on his way to holding serve at 5-6. A couple of errors and it was 30-40. And then … this happened.

(There’s a better quality version here, but I couldn’t embed it.)

That, ladies and gentleman, is one of the best balls-out death-or-glory match-point shots you will ever see. Let’s not pretend Raonic didn’t play that point well. His cross-court backhand volley was brilliantly executed and could – should – have been a winner. Roddick had no business getting to that ball, still less hitting it back for a winner. And yet.

I said after the match that if I was Raonic, I would be feeling gypped. And I would. But I would also learn a big lesson from this: that sometimes you just have to say ‘too good’, and one amazing shot from your opponent doesn’t mean you didn’t play some fantastic tennis. He did, he really did – and then had the gall to be adorable in the trophy presentation, saying (I’m paraphrasing) “at least I’ll be in one of the most-watched YouTube points of all time. I’ll be on the wrong side of the court, but at least my name will be in the description.” Be un-won over, I dare you.

But the day belonged to Roddick. It was his fiftieth final, his thirtieth title, and had to be one of the best points he’d played in his career. It was also funny in a poignant sort of way to see him cram his hat back on his head afterwards, as if to hide his receding hairline. (It’s OK, Andy. You still have an amazing bum.)

 

 Roddick referred to himself as an “old guy” when he was congratulating Raonic afterwards, and while I wouldn’t go that far, it’s difficult to deny that he probably only has a handful of opportunities left to thrill the tennis-watching public at large like that. I was so glad to be watching. Thanks for a great match.

NB: Not to spoil the moment, but I’m away for a couple of days, so blogging may be light.

Posted in andy roddick, magdalena rybarikova, memphis, milos raonic, rebecca marino, titlists | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Dark Times.

Posted by gauloises1 on February 20, 2011

Andy Roddick d. Juan Martin del Potro, 63 64

Hearty congratulations that I nearly almost feel to Andy Roddick, who played impressively to claim his first win over Delpo and advance to his 50th (!) career final. If he wins tomorrow, it will be his 30th career title. That’s just insane. As Delpo said, “Andy I think will be in the top 10 forever.”

It’s, you know, hard to overlook the dispiriting aspects of today’s match to what Roddick did right, but really he did a hell of a lot right and if he played like this every match then things would really become exciting. He was fired-up right out of the gate, an aspect of his performance noticeably lacking against Hewitt, and broke Delpo in his very first service game (shades of last week’s semi-final against Verdasco).  He had his tactics worked out perfectly; Delpo had a fair amount of success in the first set when he pinned Roddick back behind the baseline, but Roddick refused to allow him to do that on a consistent basis, playing aggressively and actually hitting out.

Delpo did call for the trainer early in the first set for some intensive thigh massage, complaining of tightness in his hamstring, but it didn’t seem to hamper his movement too much. He was slow moving out to the forehand side and as a result Roddick repeatedly stung him with his backhand down the line (that he apparently has), but he’s had that problem since his comeback. As for the injury, I’m hoping (and believing) that it’s what it appears to be – a slight strain as the result of playing a decent amount of matches last week and this that his body has become unaccustomed to.

Roddick said after the match that he felt he’d played one bad game. That would be his first service game of the second set, a fairly woeful one which saw him give up the break; but Delpo, frustratingly, couldn’t hold despite ample chances. One of the things I’ve always associated with Delpo is his ability to pull the big serve, the big shot out of his pocket at the right moment, and he didn’t have that today. He had easy holds, but only when he was down a break; a fair amount of aces, but not at key moments; and some massive winners that he couldn’t land when he had to. Frustrating.

But I was talking about Roddick. He had some issues with his shoulder, self-diagnosed as a pinched nerve and not too much to worry about, but as the set went on and Delpo became more frustrated, his focus switched more to defense and he really showcased some absurd retrieving. There was one point in particular when Delpo was hitting the ball as hard as he could (meaty grunts and everything), and Roddick simply got everything back until he managed to draw the error. All in all, he had a solid tactical plan and executed it near perfectly.

And he made this face.

But as well as Roddick played, this match was a salutory reminder (again) of how far Delpo has fallen from his former level. I keep trying to remember how giddily happy I am to see him playing again, because there’s just nobody like him, and he’s taking lesser opponents in his mammoth stride right now; but there’s no denying that it’s utterly disheartening to see him being handled by players that we all know he can contend with. It’s an interesting education in the difference between mid-ranked players like Sela or Gabashvili, and the top-flight guys (I may be stretching a point to include Baghdatis in that, but the likes of Roddick and Verdasco, certainly). It just really bites that right now Delpo is on the wrong side of that line.

But then I’m losing myself in dark thoughts and I hear this quote from Delpo’s presser. Asked what the difference was in Roddick’s game that explained the result today, he said that the last time they played was in 2009 and “that was my year”.

And that just kills me. Because I simply will not countenance that kind of thinking. Obviously I’m charmed by his wry, man-of-few-words acceptance of his situation – I’m only human – but that’s the sort of thing I think to myself in maudlin moments. It’s not the sort of thing that anyone else is allowed to say or that he’s allowed to even think. Because your best days are not behind you, Delpo. They’re just not. You’re absurdly young, painfully talented, and healthy (sort of, even if you do need to be sellotaped back together in the middle of every match). You’re going to be fine, and back, and better than you were before. You just are. Keep the faith. No pasaran!

… Maybe the new tagline of this blog should be “drunken Delpo fan therapy”. But still.

Anyway, on to Delray Beach with Delpo. And Roddick will be facing Milos Raonic in the final, after the wee Canadian defeated Mardy Fish  64 46 63 earlier in the day. Fish was fairly feeble, I thought, but Raonic was once again very impressive. He’s guaranteed to become the highest ranked Canadian ever or something even if he doesn’t win the title, and if he does, that’s a ridiculous achievement. Hell, it’s still a ridiculous achievement if he doesn’t. I still think we’ll get his true measure once the white-hot confidence that’s currently sustaining him runs out and we see how he regroups and kicks on from there, but at the same time I refuse not to be a little bit excited about someone who holds out such great promise.

  

Posted in andy roddick, juan martin del potro, memphis, milos raonic | Tagged: , , | 6 Comments »

He Won, He Won #3, a.k.a BRING IT ON

Posted by gauloises1 on February 19, 2011

Very, very exciting, people. Delpo beat Michael Russell 64 62 to make the semis of the Memphis 500, thus proving once and for all that elves really do pwn hobbits at everything except ringbearing (and the jury’s out on that one). He still hasn’t lost his serve once in the tournament and will go up against Andy Roddick in tonight’s semi-final.

Roddick had a good win last night over Lleyton Hewitt, but he did come out miserably flat. Either way it should be a good match; both of their most recent encounters went to three sets. And whatever happens, Delpo’s in the semi-finals of a 500. This is very, very good. But don’t take my word for it, let him tell you himself.

The other semi-final will be contested between Mardy Fish, who beat Sam Querrey, and the seemingly unstoppable Milos Raonic, who beat qualifier Robert Kendrick in three aceriffic sets.

I know most of you will be rooting for Raonic (as will I), but the laws of universal justice require me to call attention to the very sweet shoutout to Delpo from Fish in this Q&A, courtesy of the legendary Bobby Chiantapelli:

Juan Martín del Potro mentioned you’d play more doubles together this year. Your thoughts on him and his game right now?
I love Juan! He’s one of the best guys out here, one of the most laid-back guys. I’m a lot older than him. We played a few times. I remember playing him here one year. It might have been 2007 when he was still really young. He was ranked 60 in the world or so. I beat Juan like maybe 6-1, 7-6 in a tight tiebreaker. I played really well, and I thought this guy could be really, really good when I left the court. I remember that. I was happy to see his results. We played doubles in Madrid. We had a great time. So we’ll try to play again. He’s certainly one of the best players in the world and a pretty good doubles partner for me.

source

Bless. Meanwhile, the ladies final will feature Magdalena Rybarikova against the tournament’s last seed standing, Raonic’s compatriot Rebecca Marino.

Go Canada.

ATP

Singles – Quarter-finals
[1] A Roddick (USA) d L Hewitt (AUS) 46 63 64
[4] M Fish (USA) d [5] S Querrey (USA) 63 64
[WC] J Del Potro (ARG) d [Q] M Russell (USA) 64 62
[WC] M Raonic (CAN) d [Q] R Kendrick (USA) 64 36 63

WTA

Singles – Semifinals
(6) Rebecca Marino (CAN) d. Evgeniya Rodina (RUS) 67(1) 64 61
Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) d. Lucie Hradecka (CZE) 62 46 64

Doubles – Semifinals
(2) Govortsova/Kudryavtseva (BLR/RUS) d. (3) King/Krajicek (USA/NED) 36 62 108
(4) Hlavackova/Hradecka (CZE/CZE) d. Pervak/Senoglu (RUS/TUR) 62 61

Posted in andy roddick, juan martin del potro, magdalena rybarikova, mardy fish, milos raonic, rebecca marino, video | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

No Lols, Just Kudos.

Posted by gauloises1 on July 23, 2010

The Andy Roddick Foundation are building a new $8.2 million tennis centre in Texas Hills (I’m guessing it’s in Texas) to serve as a training ground for Roddick’s Youth Tennis Programme, which aims to give underprivileged children the opportunity to learn tennis.

That’s just … good.

OK, some lols.

Posted in andy roddick | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Wimbledon Day 7: Wha’?

Posted by gauloises1 on June 28, 2010

So, apparently I totally jinxed Andy Roddick to a five-set defeat by Yen-Hsun Lu. My powers are greater than I knew.

Sorry, dude.

I only saw this match from 5-5 in the fifth, so there’s a limit to my insight. But I get the impression (confirmed by what I saw) that Roddick’s play was almost bizarrely passive. He seemed to be choosing to enter into these long baseline rallies with Lu, and when he did come into the net his approaches were both tentative and desperate. He got invariably burned and, although it seemed impossible, once the fifth set stretched on with Roddick serving to stay in it, the end felt more and more inevitable, eventually coming at 9-7 courtesy of a Lu passer.

I don’t know if his lack of matches eventually caught up with him or what, but the match for me was very reminiscent of his straight sets defeat by Dudi Sela at Queens; he yelled in frustration to his camp then that he couldn’t see the ball, and acknowledged in his presser today that for the first three sets, he wasn’t feeling the ball at all.

Whatever, it’s a real heartbreaker for Roddick and his fans, especially after last year’s heroics. I can’t bring myself to watch his press conference, but it seems devoid of the fundamentally good-natured gallows humour that he can usually summon at the worst of times.

Q. So tomorrow when you wake up, you think you’re going to be pissed off, disappointed?

ANDY RODDICK: I’m going to be thrilled. I mean, c’mon.

Q. You’ve been through these slams before.

ANDY RODDICK: And it never gets easier. Of course I’m going to be pissed off when I wake up tomorrow. I mean, if you got fired from your job, you probably wouldn’t wake up the next day in a great mood. I mean, c’mon, let’s go. We’re better than those questions.

source

Honestly, after this kind of defeat there’s not much to say apart from asking questions the answers to which I don’t think anyone will enjoy. So there’s that. Sorry, Andy fans.

The fantastic performance of Yen-Hsun ‘Rendy’ (apparently) Lu should not be overlooked, however. I gave him pretty much no chance whatsoever ahead of this match and while there were obvious deficiencies in Roddick’s performance, it would have got it done against a hell of a lot of other opponents with Lu’s ranking and lack of experience at this level. But not only was Lu serving great, he was playing with such patience and cool you’d think he’d knocked out a top ten opponent in the fourth round of Wimbledon many times before. I was so impressed with him, and I don’t think I can be the only one.

His presser was adorable, too:

Q. What were the emotions like for you after the match? You won, sat down in your chair. What was going through your mind after the victory?

YEN‑HSUN LU: Yeah, I mean, for me, because I really thankful for my family. Also because I’m really upset because my father’s already pass away. I make this result. I’m really proud myself to share this victory with him in the sky. I hope he see this match.

So in that moment, I just sit and tell myself, I done it. I done for my father. I done for myself also. I done for all the people support me, yeah.

[…] Q. What was your family doing, your family business?

YEN‑HSUN LU: My father doing, he’s selling the chicken, not the meat, but the live chicken. So they sell the chicken, send it to the farm or something. After, they kill and become the meat. So I can catch a chicken. I can show you. Yeah, serious. I can catch a chicken (smiling).

Q. Can you elaborate on that? Was this like a chicken farm where your dad worked? Did you work with him there?

YEN‑HSUN LU: I tried few times. But I don’t really like because smell really bad. But I know is very tough work. They always working between 1:00 in the morning to 6:00 in the morning, like very early. That time the chicken cannot run away because they cannot see.

Good on you, Rendy Lu. He’ll face Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals.

As for Andy Roddick, it’s back to the drawing board once again. In fairness, there aren’t many who have demonstrated a greater degree of resilience in their time. He’ll be needing it now.

Posted in andy roddick, wimbledon, yen-hsun lu | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Wimbledon Manic Monday Preview: Gentlemen

Posted by gauloises1 on June 28, 2010

I’ve decided the best way to sum up Friday and Saturday’s action at Wimbledon is to look forward to Manic Monday, a.k.a. the greatest day of tennis in all the year, when the entire R16 – men and women – play on the same day.

Roger Federer v Jurgen Melzer

H2H: 0-0

Roger’s got his Wimbledon back on track with a straight sets victory over Arnaud Clement, a good match-up for him at the best of times. Jurgen Melzer toiled slightly more with a four-set win over Feliciano Lopez. Doubles partners in the juniors, these two have unbelievably never played on the senior tour. Melzer can be a tricky opponent and knocked out Novak Djokovic at the French Open, and Roger has obviously looked wobbly, but I reckon he’s found his feet now. Prediction: Roger in four.

Winner to meet …

Tomas Berdych v Daniel Brands

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

H2H: 0-0

Daniel Brands has, for me, been one of the surprises of the tournament; after beating Igor Andreev, Nikolay Davydenko, and Victor Hanescu (albeit in circumstances which bear examination, more on that later), he’s now through to the round of sixteen in his very first Wimbledon. And that’s not something that every bronzed sex god can pull out of the bag (I saw him at several points during Wimbledon, and he is.) He’s been excellent in tiebreaks and high-pressure situations, but Berdych certainly should be a bridge too far; he won his first two matches in straights and did get taken to five by Denis Istomin – but Istomin has been having some very good results of late. Definitely the hottest match of the day, anyway … Prediction: Berdych in three.

Novak Djokovic v Lleyton Hewitt

H2H: 3-1

Probably the most eagerly anticipated match-up of the day on the men’s side, what’s surprising to me is that Nole has won both of their previous meetings on grass; once at Queens in 2008, and once at this stage during Wimbledon in 2007. Since that time, however, Nole has been floundering – not least at Wimbledon – and Lleyton is arguably riding a great wave of confidence, coming off a win against Federer in Halle and a very decent Wimbledon last year. Everyone seems to be giving the edge to Hewitt, who’s had a good run including a straight sets defeat of Gael Monfils in the third round; Nole, on the other hand, seemed to make progress in his defeat of Taylor Dent, but laboured to a victory over a dreadful Montanes. I’m going with Nole, however, in the hope that that will Make It True. Prediction: Nole in five.

Winner to meet …

Andy Roddick v Yen-Hsun Lu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

H2H: 3-0

Please. Despite many predictions of an early exit, Roddick has withstood inspired tennis from Michael Llodra and Philipp Kohlschreiber to be in the fourth round. When he does go out, it won’t be to Lu – no disrespect to the player from Chinese Taipei, who I saw putting paid to Horacio Zeballos in the very first round. Prediction: If it isn’t Roddick in three, something’s gone seriously wrong somewhere.

Julien Benneteau v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

H2H: 3-3

Neither of these two have had a very smooth route through, but through they are as part of a stellar showing for France at this year’s Championships. Benneteau has played fourteen sets in beating Vliegen, Beck and Fognini’s eyebrows, while Jo was stretched to the limit by the artist formerly known as Oleksandr Dolgopolov Jr. in the second round. I’m surprised their head-to-head is so evenly balanced, but Jo won their only other meeting on grass, and I’d be surprised if it didn’t go the same way – especially since Benny has had to work so hard to get here. I just hope it isn’t a total disappointment, as it is all too often when the French play each other. Prediction: Jo in three.

Winner to meet …

Sam Querrey v Andy Murray

H2H: 0-3

Sam has never taken so much of a set off Andy in their previous meetings. And Andy has yet to drop a set at this year’s championships. I think both these things might be about to change. Murray has yet to be seriously tested – and now has the full weight of our nation’s expectations back on his shoulders after the abysmal performance of England’s footballers at the World Cup today – while Sam has had two tough matches against Malisse and, er, Ivan Dodig. He also has his famously laid-back attitude (when he’s not storming back off to the States in a snit) which serves him well on an occasion like this. Still, I think Andy will win. I have to believe that when Andy loses here, it won’t be to Sam Querrey, Queen’s champion though he might be. Prediction: Murray in five.

Robin Soderling v David Ferrer

H2H: 5-2

Two of my favourite players still in this year’s draw. I’m excited. But not that excited, because Robin has looked in fearsome form and while that sometimes means a player is ripe for an upset, especially when they’re being tipped as a strong contender, it’s not going to come from Ferru (bless him), who narrowly escaped defeat at the hands of Jeremy Chardy last round when the latter enacted what I don’t think it’s unfair to describe as a massive choke. Will Ferru prove me wrong and deny everyone a Nadal-Soderling quarterfinal? No. Prediction: Robin in straights.

Winner to meet …

Rafael Nadal v Paul-Henri Mathieu

H2H: 9-0

You’ll notice Paul-Henri Mathieu is pictured running into a wall. There’s a reason for that. Rafa encountered a spot of bother in his last match, courtesy of an inspired and determined Philipp Petzchner, eventually triumphing in five sets during which he called the trainer more than once and was warned for coaching. However, Rafa says the knee (for which he called the trainer – also, something in the armular region, possibly) is not an issue, and while Mathieu has been on a good run, most impressively beating Mikhail Youzhny, it ends here. Honestly, we all know Mathieu is frantically talented, but does anyone really think he’ll keep it together enough to seriously challenge Rafa? Prediction: Rafa in straights.

What do you think?

Posted in andy murray, andy roddick, daniel brands, david ferrer, jo-wilfried tsonga, julien benneteau, jurgen melzer, lleyton hewitt, novak djokovic, paul-henri mathieu, rafael nadal, robin soderling, roger federer, sam querrey, tomas berdych, wimbledon, yen-hsun lu | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Wimbledon Day 4: Royally Right

Posted by gauloises1 on June 24, 2010

A nation quaked, but it all turned out surprisingly well; Andy Murray bowed. Quite decently. One hand on the stomach, one on the back. All very respectable and with a definite air of having been practiced in front of the mirror.

You can find the bow here for post-game analysis. If you’re British. Sorry, everyone else.

He also won the match, by the way. There’s been some excited muttering about him not having played so well since Melbourne, and that’s probably true, but let’s face it, that’s really not that difficult. Anyway, it can’t have been easy out there today, despite Mandy’s claims he felt no particular additional pressure.

Bless you, you little liar.

You have to love the way that Wimbledon, in a year when for once most people’s attention will not be on Murray’s performance, still finds a way to pile on the pressure, as Mandy was duly sent up to have a private chatette with HRM immediately after the match.

How lucky is the AELTC that Mandy was playing someone as nice and polite as Jarkko, by the way? I mean, imagine if say, Daniel Koellerer was Mandy’s second-round opponent. He probably would have nutted her one. Or propositioned her.

HRM left before watching Wozniacki, for reasons which just boggle the mind, but she did have a full tour earlier on and meet a little receiving line of players past and present.

And then she was gone, and Wimbledon metaphorically heaved a sigh of relief, got out the beers and undid the top button of its trousers. Which is not something that is often said. Anyway, it was lovely to see her there. I just hope she doesn’t leave it so long this time.

See you soon, Liz II.

Posted in andy murray, jarkko nieminen, wimbledon | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Wimbledon Daze: Tested

Posted by gauloises1 on June 24, 2010

And now a little shoutout to those who have struggled, some unexpectedly, but are still standing. And, possibly, better than they ever did.

Did you know Roger Federer came *this* close to losing to Ale-Alejandro Falla? He didn’t, though, because he’s a big tease.

Just to underline the point, he then dropped a set to Ilija Bozoljac, best known for dating a housemate from Serbian Big Brother. Which is very much like the Queue. See? It all comes back to the Queue.

After narrowly avoiding a third set against Laura Robson, JJ dropped the first set to Aleksandra Wozniak tonight before coming through in three. Her dress was and is amazing, though.

After cruising through his first match against Rajeev Ram, Wimbledon’s favourite son the Other Andy struggled initially with an inspired Michael Llodra before knuckling down and winning in four.

Sveta went three with Akgul Amanmuradova in her opening match, because that’s how she rolls.

Nole struggled mightily against Olivier Rochus on Monday night, finishing two minutes shy of curfew (yes, there is one). Better news? He looked much improved against Taylor Dent today.

Aravane Rezai survived 75 in the third against the occasionally-good on grass Magdalena Rybarikova.

Benny came back from two sets to love down against an utterly obnoxious Kristof Vliegen. I take full credit for this (along with @crystaleyesd, of course). We “allez Julien!” and “c’mon Benny!”‘d him through this match, and don’t let anyone tell you differently.

Yanina Wickmayer went three with surprise Edgbaston semi-finalist Alison Riske on Monday, before narrowly beating her doubles partner Kristen Flipkens in two today. ‘mon Wicky.

And Philipp Kohlschreiber was forced to bagel Potito Starace in the fourth set of his opening match before outlasting Teimuraz Gabashvili in the battle of players who scare Roddick fans. His reward? A third-round meeting with Andy Roddick …

Posted in andy roddick, aravane rezai, jelena jankovic, julien benneteau, novak djokovic, philipp kohlschreiber, roger federer, svetlana kuznetsova, wimbledon, yanina wickmayer | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Now That’s Over With …

Posted by gauloises1 on June 8, 2010

Let’s get on to the fun stuff. The good stuff. The green stuff. QUEENS.

Defending champion Mandy had a haircut. Looking businesslike. I approve.

I am genuinely looking forward to watching Roddick on grass. What a difference a year makes.

Rafa practiced in the rain, just to be *deliberately* cute about it.

And Momo was there for no reason. Just there. Hanging around. Being perfect.

This is the magic of Queens.

Posted in amelie mauresmo, andy murray, andy roddick, queens, rafael nadal | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »