Good Luck Watching Nadal v. Djokovic in the U.S.; No Live TV Coverage!
by Sean Randall | June 6th, 2008, 8:41 am
  • 150 Comments

Sucks to be a tennis fan in the U.S. today. On arguably one of the most appealing semifinal lineups of the year live coverage from the French Open today is non-existent here in the U.S. At least I haven’t found any. Not on my TV and I have like 800 channels!

I just woke up, flipped on the Tennis Channel looking to catch what’s happening in the Novak Djokovic-Rafael Nadal match and instead I’m getting a replay of the women’s semifinal between Ana Ivanovic and Jelena Jankovic, which would be fine if it was yesterday! But of course it isn’t, it’s Friday, men’s semifinal Friday. Where’s my Nadal v. Djokovic, and the Roger Federer vs. my man Gael Monfils to follow?

Ah yes, that’s right, NBC has the coverage today and Tennis Channel has replays later tonight. And NBC is doing again what NBC does best, that is not showing live tennis!

Just great. We can watch live coverage all week thanks to the ESPN/Tennis Channel combo, but as soon as we get down to the wire we get screwed with NBC which seems to go out of its way to torpedo out sport. No wonder tennis is so in the dumps here.

To the match. Nadal is up 6-4, 2-1 with a break in the second as I write. And that sounds about like how it should go. No real surprise and I don’t think Novak is going to get a set out of this deal.

Nadal’s just at a different level at Roland Garros where he’s beaten Novak the last two years pretty easily. So I don’t look for anything to change, but I’d still like to watch it live. Especially if Rafa really starts hammering Novak, he might just retire again!

As for the second match, I’d love to see Monfils pull the upset over Federer, but it’s a tall task. Monfils simply cannot employ the strategy he used against the powerless David Ferrer, and hang 20 feet behind the baseline and play defense because Roger will take the net away or just start-up with that new drop shot of his.

Hopefully Gael will have a big serving day first, and then really crack his forehand, make smart decisions and lull Federer into some errors. Then again since NBC is coming on tape in about 90 minutes with Djokovic/Nadal, I won’t be able to see the Monfils/Federer match live either, so who cares…If the tournaments/Slams fail to make certain that the networks they contract to broadcast their events don’t care enough about showing the crucial matches live, why should we?


Also Check Out:
2009 Australian Open TV Schedule
Australian Open Countdown
2010 Australian Open TV Schedule
2011 Australian Open TV Schedule
French Open TV Schedule – Men’s Semifinals And Weekend

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150 Comments for Good Luck Watching Nadal v. Djokovic in the U.S.; No Live TV Coverage!

jane Says:

Well, that’s crappy for you guys; for once we have coverage in Canada.

On the other hand, it’s going fast towards another Rafa win, not quite a rout, but a domination for sure.

Rafa’s too good here. He’s on fire!


Ra Says:

Yes, this is completely awful. I am able to watch online (although a poor quality feed).

channelsurfing.net

Only the second of many French Open links is actually running as far as I can tell. I hope this helps someone.


Ra Says:

Jane,

I’d say it’s safe to call it a rout at this point (insofar as I can predict the future).


jane Says:

Sean,

I don’t think Novak will retire, lol, but I bet he’d like to! He’s really being schooled by Rafa. He’s disheartened, making a whack of errors.

He’s not executing any kind of game plan now either – yet Rafa is still playing every point like he usually does.


polo Says:

I am watching the Nadal-Djokovic match on http://www.justin.tv/france33

But guys, you are not missing anything. It is now 6-4, 6-2 and I think Nadal just broke Djoko in the third set. I am not watching it avidly. I just glance at the computer every now and then to see if it is over. It is basically done. Djoko, for all it cockiness in not really quite in the level of Nadal and Federer. A solid 3rd but not really quite consistent enough to join the other two for a tennis trinity.


rjnick Says:

Even more ludicrous is when ESPN or Tennis Channel DO show live coverage while a big match like Rafa/Djokovic is going on, just not that match, and then repeatedly tell us how they can’t say anything about it.


jane Says:

Ra,

Okay, call it a rout now – agreed.


polo Says:

grammar correction: …for all his cockiness is not really quite… hehehe!


polo Says:

NBC is screwing this up because they paid for the coverage of the semifinal and final matches. NBC is the Darth Vader of tennis TV coverage.


Ra Says:

Holy lord, Djokovic broke Nadal! It’s a miracle!!! Ha!


Ra Says:

Djokovic seems to have figured out how to come to net. Are we gonna see an actual tennis match now?


Von Says:

What’s happening, Djoko has break points against Rafa!!


jane Says:

I think the break then hold gave Novak and iota of hope, but let’s face it, it’s a hope in hell.

The match is still over.


Von Says:

That was the longest game of the match thus far.


jane Says:

Novak is back to how he played in the first set here, and Rafa is maybe slightly off concentration wise. The second set was all Rafa and no Djok. Get it? ;-)


Ra Says:

Am I the only one finding this match totally hilarious? Maybe it’s the sleep deprivation…


Ra Says:

For example, Novak just inadvertently did a little Sharapova dance…


Ra Says:

And I’m pretty sure someone just yelled “allez, Monfils”.


Von Says:

Ra:

I’m sleep deprived too, except I can’t see anything on TV. Everytime my head nods, I see game over, another game for Rafa.

jane:

“The second set was all Rafa and no Djok. Get it?”

I get the pun, no Djok. :) Will Rafa do a brake dance?


ChipNCharge Says:

I can’t imagine the circumstance that allowed this match NOT to be on TV. What kind of contractual blunder would it take?

I am listening to it on Roland Garros web radio. At least it sounds like we did not miss much of a match so far.


Ra Says:

Von,

you aren’t missing much unless you were hoping to see someone get demoralized and then get it together too late.

jane,

you are silly.


Von Says:

Djoko broke Rafa in the 10th game. Oh wow!!


jane Says:

I know, silly but also sleep deprived like you Ra, and you Von.

Nice to see Novak make a push here, alas, too late. But nice nonetheless.


Von Says:

Ra:

“Ra Says:
And I’m pretty sure someone just yelled “allez, Monfils”.”

Must be Justine Henin. :)


Ra Says:

Yay, it actually does look like a match now. Would love to see this go to at least a 4th set…


Ra Says:

Good one, Von. It could’ve been Mauresmo. I saw her sitting out there.


Von Says:

Djoko is building up steam coming down to the home stretch, or is it for Wimby — an I also ran.


Shital Green Says:

Finally after the 3rd game in the 3rd set, Djoko is giving us some tennis. First time ever in the match, he is leading 6-5. This is something to be consoled about just a bit, though he might still lose in straight sets.


jane Says:

Ra,

I agree; a 4th would be nice. Not like Novak could pull three sets in a row out of his hat, but 1 would be good!


Von Says:

Shital:

Never say die!!


jane Says:

Morning Shital – have you arrived to commiserate?


Von Says:

jane:

The poor huckleberry has shown some heart!!


Von Says:

Nadal is steamrolling in the tie-break.

Shital:

Have you had your morning coffee as yet? You’ll need your java jolt.


Ra Says:

And here I’d have thought Djokovic might have an edge in a tiebreak…


Ra Says:

6-0?! This is insane.


Von Says:

Lousy NBC is now showing the Nadal/Djokovic match. What superb timing — they’ve taken all the fun out of the broadcast.


jane Says:

Yes, some heart but not enough. Rafa just too good and Novak not playing his best today. He’ll learn from this though, so that’s good.

Anyhow, Congrats to Rafa!! Undefeated EVER at RG.

I haven’t seen his number 1 fan Zola around. But I bet she’s smiling!


Ra Says:

Von,

did NBC join in live or are they showing it from the beginning?

Assuming Federer makes it through to the finals, if he does somehow manage an upset, there’ll be no room for talk about how Novak wore down Rafa for him.


jane Says:

Ra,

Novak definitely didn’t wear out Rafa, even though sets one and three were competitive so there should be no talk about that. But do you really think Roger can win it? Take 3 sets from Rafa?


Ra Says:

jane,

I think Roger is absolutely capable of doing so. Chances of him actually doing it: not so good…

I’m pulling for him tomorrow, though, and will not be surprised either way.


jane Says:

Roger’s match coming right up; they players are already coming on court for warm up. Bet this one is straight sets for Roger too. Then he and Rafa should be on equal footing for the final in terms of rest.


andrea Says:

thank you nadal. time to face the only player who can give you a run for your money!


jane Says:

Ra,

Yes. You’re right; Roger has shown, in the past but even in just this year, that he is totally capable of beating Rafa on clay. I just wonder if Roland Garros is something altogether different. He’s got a shot tomorrow. We’ll see.

I’d be happy to see Rafa win four and equal Borg, but I’d be happy for Roger to finally get the French (wow – never thought I’d say that!)


rjnick Says:

I’m still pulling for Rafa to win the whole thing. Then he’ll match Borg’s 4 at the French the way Roger matched Borg’s 5 at Wimbledon. Rafa’s earned it and he deserves it.


Von Says:

Ra:

NBC is showing the match from the beginning. They waited until the last point of the live match to begin the broadcast. What a disservice to the viewers — it’s a different feeling once the results are known. None of the breathless anticipation.


Ra Says:

“You cannot be serious!”

NBC has the gall to call rerunning that match “Live” coverage.

Looks like it’s low-res foreign language coverage or bust for this next match, too.


polo Says:

Federer will probably give Rafa a more competitive match but Rafa will still win. Rafa’s game on clay has actually improved and is even more formidable now. Federer’s game, on the other hand, has been showing consistent, albeit gradual, deterioration in the last couple of years. I used to marvel at how beautiful he plays the game but I do not seem to get that sense anymore. What is glaring to me is his break point conversion which I think has been horrible lately. Does anybody know his breakpoint conversion in the past two years compared with the two years previous to that? I know there are very knowledgable bloggers on this site who can help with this question. I keep hoping that the TV commentators would say something about that but they do not even seem to notice them. They are all very bad commentators anyway. A lot of people on this site could probably commentate better than those guys.


Von Says:

Ra:

The Fed/Monfils match will be a delayed broadcast also. A lot of this is to earn more revenue for live streaming. Such robbery.


Ra Says:

jane,

“I’d be happy to see Rafa win four and equal Borg, but I’d be happy for Roger to finally get the French (wow – never thought I’d say that!)”

Are you coming on to me? Seriously, though, I’d feel happy for either of them. I’d rather see Federer win tomorrow, though, because I can imagine Rafa stringing together another 4 starting next year, whereas I cannot imagine Roger’s chances getting better as time goes on…

Von,

NBC sucks red clay covered tennis balls.


Von Says:

“A lot of people on this site could probably commentate better than those guys.”

Testing, 1, 2, 3.


Shital Green Says:

Hi Jane and Von,
Thank you for your condolences through out my mo(u)rning period. Your kind words certainly helped me get over my heavy heart. I am recuperating all right. This is certainly not the end. About time to enjoy the next match over a “java jolt.”


Ra Says:

Von,

” A lot of this is to earn more revenue for live streaming.”

Can you even buy live streaming for this anywhere? I’m watching it live for free. It ain’t pretty, though.


Von Says:

Ra:

****”Von, NBC sucks red clay covered tennis balls.”***

Somebody’s very angry. I angry too — I lost a few hours sleep. We should bill NBC for lost time. :)


jane Says:

Von,

“A lot of this is to earn more revenue for live streaming. Such robbery.”

You think so? If you’re correct, that’s terrible. I feel for you guys. For once, we actually have the coverage. TSN has picked up an Australian feed (super signal it’s called i believe) and NBC will be showing the matches later.

Fed already up a break!


Von Says:

Shital:

I like your pun on mo(u)rning. :) Get your java jolt. I could do with an IHOP breakfast right about now.


Smith Says:

It is absolutely asinine that the semifinals aren’t going to be shown live. Yes, I could watch livestream, but why should I try to watch a tennis match on my computer screen when I SHOULD be able to watch it on my TV – a Grand Slam semi no less.

Anyway, that last set of Rafa-Djoker had no business going to a teibreak. Nadal was broken twice that set, if not broken, he would have won it 6-1 or 6-2. Unnecessary drama from Rafa there.

Go Rafa and Ana for the titles!


Smith Says:

“tiebreak” I meant, oops


Von Says:

jane:

If Fed’s already up a break, then Monfils had better go back to sleep. Goodnight, Gael. Lights out!


Peach Says:

hi guys – anyone got a better feed then the justin tv one? mine’s breaking up every few minutes


polo Says:

I think I’ll turn off the computer, turn off the TV and not talk to anyone with any interest in tennis or any sport for that matter. I will take a nap and turn on the TV after two hours (that is how about how long the Nadal-Djoko match lasted). Then I will watch TV and allow NBC to fool me by pretending that I am watching a live match.


Von Says:

Polo:

“Then I will watch TV and allow NBC to fool me by pretending that I am watching a live match.”

think of it as a bad dream.


jane Says:

Ra,

Too funny – nope I’m happily married.

I guess I’ve mellowed in my feelings about Roger over the past year as I’ve seen him struggling (relatively speaking) and have seen more heart / fire from him on the court. I appreciate all he’s done for the game.

That said, I’d probably rather see Rafa get 4 in a row.

Djokovic is probably my favorite player right now, but he’s best on the hard courts as today showed. I wonder how he’ll do on the grass? So many potential contenders and Wimbledon, unlike here, where we all suspected a Rafa vs Roger final, part 3.


Sean Randall Says:

Peach, sounds like you need to move to Canada, eh? I do too.

Polo, I believe on the ATP site you can run through the matches, click “stats” and count-up the break/conversions.


Ra Says:

jane,

I was only playing, but that’s good to hear.

I can appreciate your sentiments.

I don’t see any reason why Novak’s game shouldn’t translate extremely well to grass at this point.

It’s looking pretty windy out there, now. Well, either that or Roger forked out enough dough to get some new kinda of glamor haircut that simulates a windblown effect…


Peach Says:

Sean, unfortunately the move from Australia is a bit further! over here, we don’t even get a delayed telecast…

so does nobody think Monfils has a fighting chance? youth and bravado has got to count for something, right?


Sean Randall Says:

Sorry Peach, that’d be quite a day trip.

Monfils has the weapons – big serve, big forehand and speed – to trouble Fed, but he needs to be on the offensive and not on the defensive (like he was against Ferrer) to have any chance.


jane Says:

Shital,

“I am recuperating all right. This is certainly not the end.” No, Novak has lots of time to work on his game; on clay he’s still only “darn good”, not superior.

Too bad Monfils got down that early break; he’s playing some nice stuff but does hang too far behind the baseline.


Ra Says:

Peach,

the only way I can personally see Monfils having a chance is if Federer runs around his backhand way too much and then doesn’t hit winners with his forehand. I can’t see him sticking with that if it isn’t working out, though.


muh Says:

monfils has 14 winners and 4 unforced errors but federer leads with a double break.

wtf


Ra Says:

At this point, I’m just hoping Monfils doesn’t retire or something.


jane Says:

Ra,

Of course I know you were only playing. LOL. Funny haircut comment; you’re quite the wit this morning. It’s been windy all day; I think Novak could blame at least a couple of his errors on the wind.

Roger cruised through this first set, which seemed kind of flat. Or is it just me?

Monfils is not showing any of his electricity. At least he’s beginning this 2nd set with some fantastic serving!


Ra Says:

Glad you appreciate the wit, jane.

Idunno if it was flat. It was over too soon to tell. There doesn’t seem to be much of a rhythm to this match, though, if that’s what you mean.

That was some impressive serving.


Peach Says:

Ra, do you think Monfils has the tactical experience to be able to change his game, now that he’s a set down?


Ra Says:

Peach, I don’t know that Monfils has the necessary variety of game to change his game. Perhaps I was unclear. I was talking about Federer running around his own backhand and whatnot.


Peach Says:

wow…that passing shot from Monfils – more of that please!


jane Says:

Ra,

Yes, maybe it is the lack of rhythm that makes it seem flat, compared to Monfils’ last couple of matches.

Peach,

I think Monfils is rather stubborn; from what I’ve read he doesn’t like to change his tactics too much. He certainly has the shots / ability to be more aggressive but he likes to hang back, apparently. I’d like to see him give it a go here, and not fade into oblivion.


Ra Says:

Peach,

I stand corrected. The serve and volley play is a great move on Gael’s part. And it doesn’t hurt that he’s got the wingspan of a pterodactyl.


Peach Says:

well, i’m hoping this pterodactyl doesn’t get swept aside by history like the other dinosaurs…


Peach Says:

this has the makings of a classic match – anyone still out there?


jane Says:

Good for Monfils to take a set; he’s so fun to behold.


Shital Green Says:

Monfils takes the 2nd set and makes the match interesting !


fed is afraid Says:

poor rog. if he does get through, it will be a massive beatdown by nadal. he he, i can’t wait.


fed is afraid Says:

roger will have no chance against king nadal. he might as well lose now, and not suffer the indignity of the beatdown he will get on sunday/


Peach Says:

come on, nadal v fed part III? I and II were great, but we all know how the third godfather turned out…


Ra Says:

Indignity? We should all wish to be so dignified as to get beat down by Nadal on Chatrier in the French Open final.


Ra Says:

Ok, they seriously need to either

a) enforce coaching violations

or

b) allow coaching

This has become just plain ridiculous.


jane Says:

Novak still seems to think “everything is possible,” which is a good attitude to have after today’s match. But he’s right that “the better player won.” He’s also right that his serve was off, that he made to many unforced errors, and that the wind was a factor, but he went so far as to call Chatrier “his court” meaning Rafa’s of course. He does seem to be like a King in his Kingdom out there.

“Q. I was going to ask an extension of that. If Roger does win this, do you think it’s possible he’s ready to beat Rafa on this surface?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, he wants it a lot, so he has a lot of motivation for French Open title. That’s the only title he didn’t win, so I think everything is possible.

Q. Do you have any advice for him, how to play or…

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I need to give advice to Roger? (laughter.)

I think no. He knows the best.”


fed is afraid Says:

it will be four beatdowns by nadal at RG. well, there’s always wimbledon.


jane Says:

Peach – funny comment about Godfather III; it is abysmal. I hope the final isn’t that bad! I suspect Roger will give it his all; we know Rafa will!


Peach Says:

Ra, agreed. everyone knows whats going on…if they don’t enforce the rules or else change them to allow coaching, they undermine their own authority


jane Says:

fed is afraid,

do you think rafa can beat roger that easily; in straight sets?

do you think rafa can win wimbledon? i do, but i also think there are SO many contenders for the grass title this year. we’ll see.


fed is afraid Says:

Ra- for someone who some people call the GOAT, he should not lose to nadal 3 times at RG, and if he gets through this match it will be 4.

Jane-yes, i do to both questions.


jane Says:

This comment from Rafa is pretty telling; he hasn’t been nervous at RG since 2006 against Mathieu! LOL.

Q. When’s the last time you’ve gotten very nervous here? Not a little bit nervous, but were really out playing and got really nervous where you had to take control of yourself.

RAFAEL NADAL: (From Spanish.) I am thinking. Well, a little bit against Mathieu first set, 2006 maybe it was. Against Grosjean with the problem with the crowd, 2005, I think. One set all break up, everything under control, and later was tough. No more times, I think. (laughter.)


ChipNCharge Says:

Thanks for the awsome link Ra !!!!


jane Says:

If Monfils was more consistent and a little more tactically savvy he’d be very dangerous.


Peach Says:

jane, i think (hope) that that will come with time. mind you, part of what makes him so exciting to watch is his unpredicatability – i think sometimes he excites himself!


jane Says:

I don’t know if Rafa means the best match EVER at RG or just his best at this tournament, but here’s what he said about his match with Djoko:

“The level of the two first sets was very good today. Almost perfect. So happy about, well, how I am playing today, no? Best match at Roland Garros so far, no?”


jane Says:

Peach,

“mind you, part of what makes him so exciting to watch is his unpredicatability – i think sometimes he excites himself!”

You’re very right; he’s nothing if not dramatic.

But two games in this 4th set he could’ve broken Roger and both times he blew it by going for flash. So a little less drama might be good for his game, at least in the big moments.


Peach Says:

jane, speaking of which – roger has shown some big chinks in his armour so far today – how many break points has monfils had?


jane Says:

Roger’s given up 13 I think, but Monfils not able to convert many of his chances.

Unlike Rafa, who only gave Djoko about 3 or 4 chances today and Djoko took most of them.


Sean Randall Says:

I can’t see it, but impressive that Gael is doing as well as he has. Too bad he’s missed many break points here in the fourth…!!


Ra Says:

ChipNCharge,

I’m so glad you found the link helpful. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been bailed out of potential misery by people posting links, so it is an absolute pleasure to be in a position to return the favor.

Person whose name betrays his/her own ego issues,

what you think Roger Federer, an actual living being subject to reality, “should not” do based on others’ subjective assessment of him being the GOAT is a construct of delusional idealization. He’s just a guy who (through talent, work ethic, dedication and perseverance) has long since established a pattern of ridiculously impressive results. Through what skewed logic do you belittle his successes for what he has not achieved? Also, there has yet to be a male player who has been totally dominant on all 4 surfaces; To only be so dominant on 3 does not exclude him from the GOAT conversation.


Peach Says:

Ra, out of interest, what are the penalties for coaching? and can the umpire do anything about it mid match?


Peach Says:

damn…i think they shut down that link! Ra, got anymore up your sleeve?


chipncharge Says:

Well, the link is now dead Ra. There is a message on the site that says he violated the terms of the agreement……………
i guess I will be watching the rerun…..


chipncharge Says:

oh well, you can listen to it here:
http://www.rolandgarros.com/

[Edit: Link shrunk]


fed is afraid Says:

lose now roger, or sunday you will be humiliated.


jane Says:

Roger and Monfils have played some impressive, beautiful tennis in this 4th set. Thankfully, for 3 sets (the 1st was a little flat), they’ve provided the excitement that Novak and Rafa’s match lacked until the 3rd set. Roger has played well at net today, which will serve him well if he gets to the final. He’s got match point now.


jane Says:

Good win for Roger – nice match!


chipncharge Says:

good linking Ra, at least I got to see the final point of the match


fed is afraid Says:

sunday-the annihilation will be done!!


Peach Says:

ah well, hopefully we’ll see a roger ana double?


Ra Says:

Got the link up as soon as I found it. Awful time for a feed to go…

That was hotly contested to say the least. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Federer look so stoked to win a semi… at least not in years and years.

It’s been a pleasure hanging with you all this morning/afternoon. It’s nap time for me.


Peach Says:

thanks everyone! nice chatting to you all from down here in Australia. might see you on Sunday! ;)


fed is afraid Says:

sunday will be a great day. 4 in a row for rafa, he is incredible!!


andrea Says:

yahoooo! my dream final!!!

c’mon fed!


jane Says:

Yep – nice chatting with you Peach & Ra. I’ve gotta mark essays – whooppee.


fed is afraid Says:

how many more beatdowns will roger endure till he cries uncle? lol


jane Says:

NBC just flashed an astonishing stat: Nadal has been broken only 7 times in 70 service games. Wow.


aarontennis Says:

my prediction: Federer defeats Nadal 6-0, 0-6, 6-0, 0-6, 6-0


grendel Says:

Nice impromptu description, by Frew Macmillan, of a Nadal ball which had all the signs of sailing way beyond the base line, but somehow, to everyone’s astonishment, not least Djokovic’s, didn’t; “it drops down as if falling off a cliff”. Mamillan added “Djokovic must feel a bit like that”. That was an astonishing shot, in the sense that it seemed to defy the laws of physics. Just as improbable, a backhand smash over the shoulder which landed right in the far diagonal corner – quite unsighted by Nadal. He must have a map of the court in his mind and his racket, an extension of his arm, places the ball automatically according to instruction. Apparently.

Wilander said of Federer that he was playing two matches; a lot of the time, his mind was focused on Sunday’s final. I wonder how these guys can say these things with such confidence; it is true that Fed’s concentration was drifting in and out – but how can Mats be so sure as to the reason? I hope he’s right, since obviously on Sunday his mind won’t be drifting to, say, first round at Halle or Wimbledon. Even if he is at his very best, his task is monumental. If he is as unfocused as today, he’ll suffer Djokovic’s fate. Borg said today he thought he could win. Nice to hear, hard to believe.

But what I am convinced I saw to day is a player who can, potentially, challenge Nadal on clay. I thought the first person to beat Nadal at RG would be some youngster currently beating the back streets of Buenos Aires. But now I feel Monfils has it in him.

One of the things that distinguish Nadal from Djokovic and even Federer is how loose, how elastic he is. In a quite different way, Monfils is just as flexible, both physically and I believe mentally.. Plus he has power, unmatched speed, a tremendous serve, really excellent defence, and guts – also a sense of fun, he’s not going to get overawed. At present, he lacks – at the highest level – control, and obviously experience.

If that gangly frame can withstand the rigours of the tour, and he himself is prepared to put aside a few of his eccentricities and get down to it, I really do feel he can take Nadal on next year. No one else will, that’s for sure.


freakyfrites Says:

I can’t agree more about the awful NBC coverage. It’s like they’re setting out to ruin it for the real fans and confuse any casual viewers.

You can email the chairman of NBC Sports and complain (hey, sometimes it just feels better to do something, even if it’s probably pointless): Dick.Ebersol@nbcuni.com

I have a form letter of sorts posted on my blog, too.


Dr. Death Says:

So I sleep late for once and awaken to discover that the sun still rises in the east and sets in the west.

“Things are just the same as they always were, only you’re the same as you were, too, so I guess things will never be the same again.”

Grendel – I think all of these commentators have to say something; that is what they get paid for. I appreciate the report on Nadal’s top spinners. (The only way we could appreciate it is to have a camera behind the opponent where the viewer can see the spin, the speed and the pop of the ball. U S Open does that on occasion but not many others). Obviously from the above comments, the U S cannot get live coverage so it is ridiculous to ask for great camera work.

Was there any explanation as to how Nadal hits these shots technically?


RF g Says:

I wonder about your comments about Gael is “my man, future no 1). Fed played a mediocre game today and “your man” wasn’t very close. As for the final, Fed needs to play like he did in in set 2,3 and 4 against “Gonzo” to have a chance against Rafa


grendel Says:

“Was there any explanation as to how Nadal hits these shots technically?”

Magic.


JCF Says:

Fed is afraid:

Stop it. To constantly trash talk him is uncalled for. Rafa is the favorite but it’s by no means a guarantee. The last 3 RG matches they played, Fed took a set off him, so it’s not going to be the rout you expect it to be. An upset is even a possibility.

I doubt Nadal will straight set him. Perhaps Fed has learnt not to choke away those sets he should have won? This will make a big difference.


jane Says:

grendel,

As I was watching and thoroughly enjoying Monfils and Roger this morning, I snuck to the computer to check if Monfils and Rafa had ever played on clay – turns out they have played two matches, both on clay, and both of which Rafa won convincingly, but not since 2006.

I couldn’t help thinking that a Monfils vs. Rafa final might be even more exciting that a Rafa vs. Roger one, no disrespect meant to Roger. But we’ve seen that second scenario a number of times now, at RG 3 xs, in Rome, at Hamburg, at MC, etc.

To see the electric Frenchman in the final against Rafa would’ve been something else entirely. I agree that Monfils may match up well with Rafa now, and may pose a challenge in the future. He can, certainly; whether he will is altogether up in the air.

By the way, it’s interesting if Borg is tipping Federer to win; is it possible he doesn’t want Rafa to supersede his record? The write up at ESPN said Borg wouldn’t go so far as to name a winner.

It’s hard to count Roger out when he says things like this: “”I will try everything,” Federer said. “I hope I will finally win here.” He seems exceedingly determined, ready to try anything, to not be stubborn. But Rafa certainly looked unbeatable today.


fed is afraid Says:

4 straight RG’s victories for rafa, the greatest clay courter ever. no one will ever come close to what he has done. i can’t wait for sunday. i actually feel bad for rog.


grendel Says:

Borg didn’t tip Fed to win as such – he just said he felt Fed could win, after playing (in his, Borg’s opinion) his best Roland Garros so far. A cagey fellow, Borg. As a matter of interest, has anyone of the great and good tipped Federer? Although, obviously,I would like Fed to win, I’ll be happy if he is competitive – a drubbing will damage his confidence for Wimbledon, I am sure, at least if he has to meet Nadal in the final again.


Marc Says:

Yes, it’s yet another disappointing day of French Open coverage from NBC Sports: not airing the Federer match and running commercials between each game (instead of on change-overs) during the Nadal-Djokovic match.

Here is the phone number for NBC Sports: 212-664-2014. I called them and left a message expressing my feelings about their coverage. You folks might want to do the same. :)

BTW, I emailed them as well but –interestingly– the email didn’t get through.


Franz Says:

well you could just say that ur tv coverage sucks cuz i got it… not all of US doesnt get it.


FoT Says:

Well I’m watching the taped broadcast from Tennis Channel now. It is just rediculous that for a grand slam tournament most Americans were reduced to watching a crappy live feed from the internet in order to see live tennis from 2 Semi-finals. We had 3 networks involved in covering the French Open (Tennis Channel, ESPN, and NBC). So you’re telling me that none of those stations could have aired the matches live? Not just for any tennis tournament – but for a Grand Slam!!!! I wonder if Roddick or Blake or Isner or any other American was in the SF would one of those stations showed their matches live? Yes, something has to be done regarding the coverage (or lack of).

I had given DirecTV props the first week because we had all those various stations to see the different courts, then the 2nd week those were taken away from us.

As far as the tennis. Yes, Nadal looked awesome today. But I’m still rooting for Roger on Sunday. I know I am probably the only person here who thinks he really can win but I can’t give up hope. Roger can’t either – otherwise it’ll be another Almagro match.

So with that… GO ROGER… bring your best and hope for the best. That’s all you can do.


Sean Randall Says:

RF, Monfils wasn’t very close? Watch the match again. I seem to recall several break points he had against Rogi in that fourth set.

Monfils is almost a much lesser version of Rafa, just with a big serve. He can retrieve a lot of balls, can hit forehand winners but is just such a raw talent.

FoT, if it was an American like Agassi it likely would have been live. Can’t disrupt the soaps!

So Barbados gets the matches live and the U.S. doesn’t. Perfect.

Marc and others looking to complain. NBC 100% doesn’t care. Email the French Open. They should care.


andrea Says:

borg is as a fickle as the wind – he says nadal can win wimbledon, he says roger can win the french, he says nadal will win wimbledon this year…blah blah.

sunday will be fun! roger had his hands full today. didn’t get to see the end of the match but sounded like he was happy to pull through.


Glenn Says:

I didn’t get to watch the Nadal/Djokovic match live. I was watching a replay of the Federer/Monfils match and I was rather upset to hear the result of the Nadal/Djokovic match – I mean, I didn’t want to hear about it; I wanted to watch it with all the angst of expectation.

Oh well, I’ll be watching it tonight (pre-recorded on my DVR) when I get home from shopping. I’m sure I’ll enjoy the tennis despite knowing the outcome.


jane Says:

andrea, it’s a shame you didn’t see the end of it; that was the best part – the 4th set was rip-roaring fun with Roger scraping & playing his way out of some excellent Monfils-induced jams.


PJ Says:

I definitely think Rafa is going to win, and I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if he wins in straight sets. However, I think Roger has a decent chance of making things interesting. I think this is one of the first years where a lot of people are counting Roger out. Even though Rafa has been the favorite the last few years, people were always talking about Roger really having a chance. Not so much this year. Rafa has been playing freakishly well (even for him on clay), Roger hasn’t been looking as great as usual, and Roger’s year hasn’t been going great. If Roger can just relax and swing freely, he might give Nadal a run.

Do I think it’ll happen? In my heart, yes; head, a big no.


Ra Says:

I do so hope Roger emerges victorious this year. I wish he had those fans from Monte Carlo and Hamburg there for him… especially those kids with the drums and there trance-inducing cheering style. That was the [stuff]. Anyone know what I’m talking about?


John Says:

NBC did a HORRIBLE job with their coverage of the match. I watched Rafa win the first set 6-4, then they come back from commercial and it’s already 5-1 in the second set and you’re just like WTF! Not that I’d want to see Novak get schooled like that but still, Shitty Coverage.


Ivanovic v Safina Today, Federer v Nadal Tomorrow at French Open Says:

[...]  Good Luck Watching Nadal v. Djokovic in the U.S.; No Live TV Coverage! [...]


J. C. Says:

What other sport gets the absolutely poor coverage tennis does? There isn’t one. Even if it’s presented taped, they wouldn’t show a soccer playoff and skip a portion of a period, or a baseball game and skip some innings. The USTA isn’t interested in the fans, just the revenue. I don’t have the Tennis Channel, so I was unable to get any coverage that ESPN/NBC didn’t cover. It was incredible to have the French Open being played on Memorail Day and not be able to see any of it!

The ESPN schedule was not followed either. They were suppose to show the women’s and men’s semis starting at 12 Noon on Thursday and Friday. When I viewed my tape from yesterday, I saw 10 minutes of the Serb match and a 35 minute rerun of the Sharapova/Safina match! The Federer/Monfils match was never shown!

When the USA channel had the contract for the French Open they carried it stem to stern. Does anyone know to whom I can write to complain? I did send an E-mail to ESPN but don’t expect to get a reply.


Daniel Says:

I also think this year is the best shot for Roger. The previous ones he had an easy way going into the final and was “surprised” by Nadal, and as someone mention, stubborn in his way of playing.

Now even thought he is not looking so sharpy, he is winning when tested, which is great, specially to his confidance! Nadal was the one who had an easy draw playing against players he is used to win, getting to a point where he decides to go for the shots earlier and the result we saw today, his improvement is clear! I’ve never see him so aggressive, right from the first point, he is with so much confidance that he is playing on clay how he should be playing on hardcourts. Fed is the one who needs to surprise Nadal now, I don’t know how yet, but I think we will see it sunday!


Von Says:

Ra:

“I wish he had those fans from Monte Carlo and Hamburg there for him… especially those kids with the drums and there trance-inducing cheering style. That was the [stuff]. Anyone know what I’m talking about?”

I remember it well! Those kids made so much noise, it was impossible for Fed not to hear and/or notice them. The announcers mentioned they should be in school, but that they had an excuse “Mummy Roger’s playing”. I’m sure Fed was inspired and motivated by his young, energetic and boisterous fans.

______________
J.C.

“The USTA isn’t interested in the fans, just the revenue. I don’t have the Tennis Channel, so I was unable to get any coverage that ESPN/NBC didn’t cover.”

You’ve hit the nail on the head. The USTA is only interested in making big bucks. How could they ignore such a blatant disregard by the medis for the putrid tennis coverage that’s available to the US public? Today, and last Sunday, the NBC TV listings were totally unrelated to Tennis — last Sunday, the listing was “to be announced”. Today, some stupid program. However, there was absolutely no hint of tennis at all in the program lineup, and when they do have tennis listed, the amount of time allotted for the matches is so skimpy; no allowance whatsoever for the match exceeding, what NBC perceives to be, its allotted time schedule. As the saying goes, ‘no use complaining, no one is going to listen’.


Linda Says:

Agreed…it is very frustrating to have NBC give us only part of the Nadal/Djokovic match and nothing of the Federer/Monfils match, as if it never happened. Why does NBC take over the big matches and give such poor service that the fans are just angry?


Christopher Says:

NBC, Leave tennis alone!

We get LIVE coverage of all the early matches from tennis channel and ESPN. NBC comes along and show us pre-taped coverage of the men’s semi-finals. Who is making these decisions? No wonder why tennis rating are down. We want to see the action unfold LIVE. If we already know the outcome where is the drama? If you can’t or won’t show the matches live give other networks the opporturinity to do so. You are cheating the tennis viewing fans in America! I’m so sick of NBC!!!


andrea Says:

hmmmm. i only watch nbc for the grand slam finals (french-US open) since i really like mcenroe. the other two twits i can leave behind.

the rest of the coverage we get in canada (for masters events and grand slams) is on TSN and they are great in offering real time coverage – i mean, i have to be up at 6 or 5 am on the west coast to watch it – but nothing takes the wind out of watching a match if you already had heard what the outcome was.

i do like the TSN coverage since the commentators are less ‘sun sets on america and its events’ and offer some great analysis of all the players without feeling like they have to talk the whole way through with inane filler. plus, i like hearing all the different accents.

maybe some of you can get TSN on a feed?


Tennis Fan Says:

WOW … I don’t remember seeing Federer this excited about playing a match in a long, long time (re: Sunday Final against Nadal). He has looked like he was sleep walking against some opponents over the last year and I have wondered if he had lost the desire required to play at his best.

In spite of what Sean Randall and others on this blog might hope to believe, the only person in the world that has the game to dethrone Nadal from his perfect surface is Federer! He just has to play at his very best!!!

Yes … it is true … we haven’t seen Federer play at his very best for a long long time.

Nadal’s game looks absolutely formidable right now … Djokovic looked like he didn’t belong on the same court.

Federer’s got the game … now can he deliver the kind of tennis he is capable of? I for one would like to see that level of tennis played at least one more time!

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