Is there anyone who can beat Rafael Nadal on clay? After last week in Monte Carlo the kid follows up by winning in Barcelona today to up his current clay win streak to 47 straight.
More importantly, he’s placed himself head and shoulders above anyone else on the surface, Sir Roger Federer included.
The Barcelona win was nearly a foregone conclusion – though he did have to overcome a set and 4-1 deficit to Niemenin – but it was his Monte Carlo performance that sent the message to the rest of the tennis world that he is still the No. 1 man on dirt. Just ask Roger.
Federer entered that match talking up that he had figured out Nadal’s “one dimensional” game. Well, that didn’t happen as the Spanish Bull sent a flurry of heavy topspins to that Federer backhand and the mighty Swiss couldn’t cope, again.
For the record, that’s four wins for Nadal and just one for Federer in their head-to-head meetings. Fed’s lone win of course came when Nadal blew a two set and a break lead in the Miami final last year, otherwise it would be 5-0 Nadal beat down.
Andy Roddick knows a thing or two about being on the wrong end of a head-to-head. Now Fed does too…Ha.
Wimbledon prize money made headlines this week. The stodgy folks at the AELTC decided again that the men are worth more than the ladies offering up $53,000 more to the men’s champ than the women’s. The WTA of course is in uproar including Venus Williams who says “At Wimbledon we would like to have equal prize money to prove that we are equal on all fronts.”
Okay Venus, then play best of five sets. Then you’ll be equal. Till then, shut up and be happy you don’t have to play that chain smoker Karsten Braasch ever again.
Actually, if anything the men should boycott.
Consider that the ATP total prize money offered for 2006 is just over 60 million dollars while the WTA gals are playing for around 40 million (both figures minus Slams). So with that, the WTA is 20 million behind in the marketplace. Why? Answer: Because they are NOT equal.
If they were equal (or better) as some WTA players contend then the corporate marketplace would dictate that and the WTA would be getting equal or more sponsorship money. But they are not. Not even close for that matter.
So until the WTA offers equal or more total prize money than the men, the women should just be grateful for what the Slams do give them.
Always remember: “It’s the economy stupid!”
One last note: Ivan Ljubicic No. 3 in the world. Scary…
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