Nadal Leads Spain Against U.S. in Davis Cup; Del Potro, Argentina Host Russia
by Sean Randall | September 19th, 2008, 10:38 am
  • 225 Comments

The Davis Cup is back in focus this weekend with the World Group semifinals and an assortment of interesting, if not intriguing, qualifying playoff ties featuring just about all the big names in tennis.

On the big stage, Spain hosts the U.S. and the Russia visits Argentina in the semifinals. I won’t spend much time discussion Spain-U.S., as I think the depleted U.S. team without Bob Bryan but with Andy Roddick and Sam Querrey is not going to put fear into the hearts of Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer, at least not on a red clay court. And hell, Spain might even beat them on a grass court. So barring a Federal Reserve bailout of the U.S. Davis Cup team – don’t laugh, not a 100% impossibility – Spain might not drop a point in this one.

Argentina v. Russia looks like the better and the closer tie with David Nalbandian v. Igor Andreev followed by Juan Martin Del Potro and Nikolay Davydenko later today. JDMP will be thrust into the spotlight like never before, so I’ll be interested to see how he fares with the pressure.

But I think Argentina gets through in the end to host Spain come December. And maybe one of my predictions will actually come around!

What I can’t figure out is why I can watch Argentina v. Russia LIVE on the Tennis Channel right now, but the tie between the country I live in, the U.S., and Spain is NOT ON! It’s on Vs. on TAPE DELAY in a few hours. As if I should be surprised…

Fortunately, as I said earlier I don’t think the US v. Spain will be that compelling a tie (Nadal has already beaten Querrey in four sets), so I’ll likely not be missing much.

Among the World Group playoffs – meaning the winner gets into the World Group – Roger Federer should lead Switzerland back into the “show” as they host Belgium. The Brothers Murray will have to win their doubles if they are going to beat Austria and Novak Djokovic will try to get his Serbia squad past the Slovak Republic and into the 2009 main draw.


Also Check Out:
2012 Davis Cup Draw: US Travels to Switzerland, Spain the Favorites Again?
2011 Davis Cup Draw: US Must Travel to Chile
Nadal Leads Spain In Search Of Fifth Davis Cup Title This Weekend
2013 Davis Cup Draw: Raonic, Canada Host Spain In Opener; Czechs Visit Switzerland
Davis Cup Doubles: Israel Upsets Powerhouse Russia, U.S. Alive

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225 Comments for Nadal Leads Spain Against U.S. in Davis Cup; Del Potro, Argentina Host Russia

jane Says:

I thought Roddick would pull out that first set tiebreak, but Ferrer prevailed; it was close though. And Sam sure did well to steal the first set from Rafa, on clay no less. As I write, Roddick may be about to go up a break in the second set. So the USA are playing well on clay.


zola Says:

Sean,
on time again! Impressive!
I am waiting to see the matches on TV in about an hour. but meanwhile they can be seen on tiny tiny screens:

http://cricketvialaptops.blogspot.com/
http://www.justin.tv/muchodeportestv

live scores:
Spain-US, Arg-RUS
http://ls.daviscup.com/dc/2008/WG/sf/launch.asp?tie=100010173

others:
http://ls.daviscup.com/dc/2008/WG/po/launch.asp?tie=100010748
*********
More links ( consolidated here!):

TV in USA:
VERSUS: starting at 12 ET .(find it from here:
http://affiliate.zap2it.com/channelfinder/versus/

Tennis channel (at night).
TV program for USA and other countries:

http://www.daviscup.com/ties/tvschedule.asp?tie=100010173


gulu Says:

Hi Sean! Absolutely delighted right now.Just can’t wait for the Davis Cup matches to start.JMDP,I hope will win his match against Nicole n so will Nalbandian.These matches r going to be another test for Fed. Rafa n his Spanish team are sure winners.


zola Says:

Sean,
why my previous comment does not appear here?

****
Yes, US is playing very well. I am very impressed with Querrey. He might be the real deal for the US. He plays well on hard and clay. For him to come out in his forst DC and win the first set againt the worl no 1, on clay, was just phenomenal. The last set was close too.

I read that the thin air in MAdrid lead to many errors during the practice for the spaniards. So it was a poor choice on Spain’s side. The venue is spectecular and it is a great promotion for MAdrid, but puts lots of pressure on the players. I am glad Rafa was able to win.

Sam has two advantages: his serve,which worls very well he had 7 aces in the first set) and his height that allows him to respond to those shoulder height top spin backhands. I think any of his matches with Rafa will be very close from now on. He has a great game. well-done.


zola Says:

Now Roddick is a break ahead in the second set. He looks comfortable on clay too.

Come on Ferru!


zola Says:

oops, two breaks up! demolition!


jane Says:

And now up a break in the third set: I expect Roddick to level this tie. The doubles is going to count for a lot I think.

I see Nalby managed to pull out that first set; when I was watching Andreev was ahead in the tiebreak. But now Nalby’s up a break in the second set too. Like Sean, I am interested to see how JMDP makes out here.


zola Says:

5-1 Roddick, third set!
Roddick is playing great and Ferru has completely lost the control on his serve. Yes, tomorrow’s doubles should be even more exciting.

I wish they showed the matches on TV in real time.

Ferrus double faults are just too many. I think a million already!


jane Says:

I am watching on that link you posted zola; so presumably you’re seeing this live too. I am not surprised to see Andy doing well. He did well at the USO and the shoulder seemed better. Plus he did well in Rome this year – until his injury in the semi. So he can play on clay.

I see Ferrer is up a break in the 4th now, but he’ll have to serve better if he wants to hold onto it, as it’s not easy to break Roddick’s serve.


grendel Says:

Any reason why Roddick should not play well on clay? There seems to be an unconscious supposition that anyone with a huge serve is automatically a non-starter for clay. Non-sequitor, eh? Because Roddick has such a tenacious defence, I should have thought that clay would rather suit him. Of course it is true that he has always spoken disparagingly of his own clay court prowess, or lack of it. I’m not sure if I ever quite believed him, though. It’s an old technique, isn’t it, to put yourself down to pre-empt anyone else doing so.


jane Says:

I don’t think there’s any reason Roddick should not do well on clay; that’s just been what people think, given that his record on clay is not his best, and given that he, himself, makes those sorts of comments you mention. As he showed in Rome this year, he can go deep in a major clay tournament, and had he not gotten injured, who knows? He might’ve beaten Stan and maybe even Novak. He’s won some important Davis Cup matches on clay.

So personally, I am not surprised to see him in a 5th set with Ferrer, and I would definitely not be surprised if he wins it.


jane Says:

Roddick’s consistency is generally undervalued, I think. Plus, when he’s confident, he’s very dangerous against anyone. P-Mac seems to bring out strength and calm in Roddick; they’re a good team.


Daniel Says:

Go Roddick, make it interesting!!! If he wins Ferrer and US win the doubles, boy the last two rounds will be very exciting. So far it’s being good, I thought it would be a massacre.


Daniel Says:

On another subject, Fed turn away a 1-4 deficit in the second set and is now serving 5-4. Good to see he regain his belief that he can turn around any score.


Oleg Says:

Lots of aces in the Nadal-Querrey and Ferrer-Roddick match… is this a fast claycourt?


Vulcan Says:

Buena-Buena Daviiiiiid!!!!


Daniel Says:

sh….! Ferrer beats Roddick, the fun ends! But Del potro x Davy have started and it could be a great match.

Nalby kept his perfect record defending Argentina. I am dying to see a Nadal x Nalbandian on clay final, the match I am waiting for three years and I hope the real Nalby shows up!


topspin Says:

8-6 on the fifth!!!

go FERRER!!!!

it’s all but over for the usa :D


jane Says:

That was a good win for Ferrer; Roddick gave him all he could handle and really cruised through the 2nd and third sets. But one thing Ferrer has shown again and again is not to count him out until the last point is played. Great match!


Vulcan Says:

I didn’t see the match but the scoreline looks like a classic rope-a-dope to me.


jane Says:

I see JMDP is handling the pressure – and Davydenko – just fine! Nalbandian and JMDP could be a formidable Davis Cup singles team in the final, if they get there.Don’t know much about Calleri / Canas as a doubles team, but maybe Perrota is onto something?


zola Says:

Jane,
congratz for Djoko’s win ( in straights!)

I watched the first two sets of Ferru-Roddick match. Then started watching Rafa-Querrey on TV. I will watch the full ferru-Andy after this one.

Great come back by Ferru to win that match. I was very disappointed by his serve. He had millions of double faults and after the third set I thought he lost the match. But the come back at fourth set was just great.

Sure Roddick can play on clay. But playing in DC against Spain in front of 24000 people is not easy. Both Andy and Sam played great.

Querrey is so impressive against RAfa. He moves well,two handed backhand nuetralizes Rafa’s topspin and comes to the net, uses dropshots. Excellent play. He wins the first set and then breaks RAfa at the beginning of second. Rafa is now back and on serve. Altogether a great match.

I am sure it is disappointing for the US team to be 0-2. But both players gave 100%.Great effort.


Lynx Says:

@Oleg: Regarding serve speed, the Spanish Tennis Federation had considered holding this event in some other place at sea level, so as air density could slow down serve balls. Madrid is about 650m above the sea. Maybe this factor counts for that.

David has done a great job in the last set. The beautiful Plaza de Toros Monumental de Las Ventas has also made some contribution to the “faena”.


jane Says:

Yeah, it’d be nice to see Serbia (and Britain and Switzerland and Australia) back in the think of things. Thanks zola. Congrats on Spain’s win.

Admittedly I was kind of rooting for the USA today; you know how I like to see the wealth & love spread around! Be nice for the US players to win, since they’ve not won a lot this year individually. And I like Sam more each time I see him play; I really felt Roddick played excellent today too. Just those couple breaks made the difference.


zola Says:

Lynx, Oleg

I think that was a big dispute between the players and the Spanish Tennis Federation. The players wanted somewhere at see level and thought the thin air at Madrid will help the fast serves of US players. They even decided not to take part in any promotions until Munoz ( head of the federation) resigned, but agreed to play in MAdrid. I read yesterday that the Spanish players had difficulty finding their range. So the venue is beautiful, but the altitiude has made this a very fast clay court. Even in the pre-match interviews the players talked about it.


jane Says:

durr – typo: “think” should be “thick” – I wonder if there’s anything Freudian about that slip?


jane Says:

I am glad it was a “fast” clay court, if that’s the case. It leveled the playing field, making the matched tighter and more exciting. I don’t like to see routs generally speaking.


jane Says:

matches, not matched! Can’t type today.


zola Says:

Jane,
It certainly did. Good for the fans, but from the DC point of view, the players wanted to have the court with maximum advantage for them. It was like the US choosing Indian Wells for Davis cup instead of the fast indoor they played on last year.

There are too many good matches for one day. I wish DC was played like a grand slam, suring two weeks and we could watch all these matches.


gulu Says:

My regret over the years has been that a talented player like Roddick has been treated very badly by many.He’s a good player and a decent human being.I believ that he can play well on all surfaces .He 4 sure deserves more respect from the people.


I like tennis bullies not tennis sissies Says:

Q-
why do people say that aroddick cant play on clay?


Von Says:

gulu:

“My regret over the years has been that a talented player like Roddick has been treated very badly by many.He’s a good player and a decent human being.I believ that he can play well on all surfaces .He 4 sure deserves more respect from the people.”

Thanks ever so much for those kind sentiments regarding Roddick. He’s definitely deserving of more praise and respect in lieu of the crudeness that’s spoken/written about him. I’m a huge Roddick fan and it absolutely pains me to read the comments by so many ‘sick’ people here on these threads. Some of them just seem to sit and wait for him to sneeze to express their mindless opinions of what they don’t like about him. What do you call anyone who would would refer to a human being as a ‘donkey”? Mentally deranged!! I don’t like to use the word ‘hate’ in my vocabulary, but from the statements I’ve read here, it’s the only word that’s fitting for the cruel statements written. These people harbor ‘hate’ in their hearts, and most of it pertains to the fact that Roddick is American. Further, what really boils my blood is that those who utter such nonsense, would go to the ends of the earth to defend their fave player if the reverse were to occur. Unfortunately, for Roddick and his few remaining fans who post on this site, which I could count on one hand, these critics who are in the majority, can state whatever they like and are applauded by their cohorts for their mindless, sick utterances. They’re just empty-headed, classless vessels and babbling brooks, who are monomaniacal, epitomize cockalorum and are devoid of any decent, thought word, or action.


Von Says:

It’s amazing that Madrid makes playing difficult for the Spaniards in their own country, but it’s the ideal conditions for the Americans to play — absolutely preposterous and defies all logic.


zola Says:

Sean,
Is there a way to get the players’ post-match interviews?

In response to a question about the althitude, Rafa said it made a very big difference, especially in the return of serve. He was asked if he was surprised by Sam’s performance and he said no. He knew Sam was a good player and had a good clay season.

now onto Ferru-Roddick!

gulu,
I have criticized Roddick. But not for his game.For his occasionaly not-very-nice on-court treatment of the umpire and some younger players. But I think he gives his best and he wants to win. He takes his commitments seriously. Davis cup, presseres, etc. Even losing to Federer very badly in AO and US Open, he went to the press conference and answered all the questions with humor ( that I liked a lot). I think the criticism for his game has been that he relies mostly on his serve. However, he has played great matches on clay and he was the only player this year to defeat the top 3. I also like the fact that he still tries to improve. He recruited Connors and now PMAc. I think it will help him.

For sure, today’s matches were great efforts by both Querrey and Roddick ( Which I am going to watch right now!).


jane Says:

I think Roddick gets that reputation because of Roland Garros; he’s never done well there, and slams are what many tend to remember. Even though Roddick’s won Houston on clay and done well at Rome a couple of times, not to mention some key Davis Cup wins on clay, he still has that non-clay rep. But look how well he pushed Ferrer on clay today!

———————

6-1, 6-4, 6-2: JMDP dispatches Davydenko. Pretty impressive win for a 1st ever Davis Cup match against a very steady player.


zola Says:

They water the courts between each sets, still it starts to dry out by the middle of the set.


zola Says:

each set!


Von Says:

Someone, please tell me I’m not seeing the watered nonsense I’m reading. Is this April fool’s day today? Sure sounds like it to me. Oh no, wait a minute Halloween’s nearly here and the brew is in it’s initial stage. How many broomsticks will be needed?


jane Says:

Sean,

“Argentina v. Russia looks like the better and the closer tie…”

Funny, it was just the opposite. Both of Argentina’s wins were in straight sets, whereas the USA took Spain to 4 sets in the 1st match and 5 sets in the second. Obviously that Roddick vs. Ferrer match could’ve gone either way, too.


Roddick is a donkey Says:

That was fun to see the donkey beaten by ferrer. Donkey was crying like a baby to the umpire.

Let us all hope the US team gets a pathetic consolation win tomorrow before Nadal performs the euthanasia of the miserable donkey. It is just not right that the donkey gets a D-cup because the bryans are just unbeatable in doubles. Donkey, your 1 minute of fame is up. Move over – The real champs are on their way!


Roddick is a donkey Says:

The reason the matches were even this close is because of that the spannish tennis had foolish people (even worse than roddick) who picked madrid as the venue.

Credit to the US – they didn’t get raped in the bullring, they merely got a kick in the butt


Von Says:

I’m amazed that this persistent drivel is NEVER reprimanded. Utterly unbelievable.


grendel Says:

Roddick’s a scrapper. So you can never count him out. On the other hand, he loses surprisingly sometimes. He got beaten at the US Open a few years ago by Joachim Johannsson the Swede when really he was controlling the match. He’s a nervy player, and often seems to get distracted (Johannsson, who was a limited player apart from his serve, was focused throughout; he basically just bided his time, steadily waiting for Roddick to give him a present). It was noticeable when he beat Federer this year that he was absolutely focused; this was probably because of the great respect he has for him. This suggests – logically – that perhaps he ought to take some of his opponents more seriously.

Yes, del Potro’s victory looked impressive on paper, even if Davydenko seems to have lost it somewhat these days. Some people keep asking for del Potro’s credentials. We, however, (the discerning ones), have understood for a little while now that this young man is going to keep scaling the ladder, and he will severely test the very best.


jane Says:

One of the most surprising losses of Roddick’s, for me anyhow, was at Wimbledon in 07 against Gasquet. Roddick was there, he had the match in his hands, and suddenly, Gasquet stormed the Bastille, mainly with his backhand bombs! Tough loss, that one. It’s not like Roddick played badly, but he needed to close it out and Richard just shocked him by hanging on. What’s even more remarkable, in a way, is that the exact reverse happened to Gasquet this year; I couldn’t believe it, when serving for it in the 3rd, another Andy turned things around and snatched the match from Richard’s jaws. To me, it almost seemed like cosmic karma or fate or something weird like that.

I don’t know if Roddick doesn’t take his opponents seriously, but I agree that he’s nervy and when something’s thrown off (bad call, suddenly hot player, etc.) he can lose focus, like many players. When he doesn’t let things rattle him, when he plays within himself, like he did against Gulbis, he can get it done more often than not I’d say.


Oleg Says:

Does anyone know if Roger Federer will play all of Switzerland’s Davis Cup matches next year?

With Roger and Stan playing each of the ties they would have a real good shot at winning the whole thing in my opinion.


zola Says:

Oleg
Roger usually plays the later rounds because of schedule conflicts.I don’t think he would play all the rounds.
Him and Stan are a good(Golden?)doubles team.

I am still watching Ferru-Roddick ( end of set 4). Very nice match and now that Ferru made a come back, the crowd is really vocal.The arena is amazing.


Giner Says:

Well, this is interesting. I don’t believe I’ve given Roddick enough credit. 8-6 in the 5th? He actually played overall a better match than Ferrer judging by the scoreline — just in the wrong places.

He really did perform far better than anyone should have expected of him given the conditions and occasion. Good for him.

Unfortunately, that match was key. Now, in order to win, the visitors will have to beat Nadal.

Querry looked like he played well too, making what looks like a match of it. Nadal would not have panicked in losing the first set to Querry, but it would have given him something to think about. The last time he played on clay was at Roland Garros where he was imperious — he conceded a set to no one. Good effort for the young American.

2-0 is a deficit that is rarely overcome in DC. The visitors have fared better than expected, but 2-0 is 2-0. Anything can happen in Davis Cup, so we’re told, however they know their backs are to the wall.


grendel Says:

Ah, but Gasquet has the raw talent to turn it on against anybody at all when the pressure has lifted (unlike Johannsson, who was a grim plodder/bomber). Gasquet had essentially lost against Roddick, so he just relaxed and played like the world beater he has it in him to be.

And I don’t agree that “another Andy turned things around and snatched the match from Richard’s jaws.” Murray didn’t turn anything round – Gasquet just folded when the pressure was on. And if you remember in that match, Gasquet was hugely more impressive in the 2 sets he won than in the 3 Murray won. Once Gasquet was broken, one just knew the match was over. All Murray’s histrionics and geeing up the crowd and so on seemed pretentious to me on that occasion, because it was so obvious that the match, both the winning and the losing parts, was all about Gasquet. Murray wasn’t quite a spectator – he did, for example, have to take advantage of Gasquet’s failure of nerve, and this he did efficiently enough. And I speak as something of a Murray fan, too. But Gasquet was magical for a while. He’s such an irritating character: playing the way he did he would, in my opinion, have had the beating of Nadal in the next round. Except he would have crumbled at the last hurdle, of course.


grendel Says:

I meant to say “Gasquet was hugely more impressive in the 2 sets he won than Murray was in the 3 he won”. It’s clearly time for the land of nod.


jane Says:

Maybe: the most exciting set I think I’ve seen from Gasquet (though the ones at Wimbledon come close; he’s great on grass) was that 1st set against Rafa in Toronto this summer. Wow. I was converted, and then he folded. He’s a frustrating one for sure. I’d love to see him pull it all together. Did you hear what Courier said about Gasquet’s forehand this summer, when he was playing Haas at the Open? It was interesting; Courier said that the type of forehand Richard hits calls for impeccable timing and thus when it’s off it’s really off, or something to that effect. Maybe it’s a shot that Gasquet could revise? Maybe it’d take some pressure off his sublime backhand. Anyhow…


jane Says:

I think Murray did turn it around insofar as he served a lot better from that point in the match on. But yes, it took a choke from Richard too. I actually liked the frenzy of the crowd, but you know I go in for that sort of thing. However, that said, by the end even I was tiring of it. At first it was really something though.


Jimbojones Says:

Give both Querrey and Roddick credit. Querrey made a match out of what was a pretty impossible situation. Roddick statistically got the better of Ferrer, but 0-2 is 0-2 so Spain gets the credit on the score board. Had Roddick won and the doubles point gone to the U.S. maybe an upset would have been sprung on Sunday.


Von Says:

“I don’t believe I’ve given Roddick enough credit. 8-6 in the 5th? He actually played overall a better match than Ferrer judging by the scoreline — just in the wrong places.”

Roddick should have won that match and he IS a much better player than Ferrer. He’s won 27 titles as opposed to Ferrer’s 8, won a GS and made it to the finals of 4 GS. The problem today was the order of the play. Roddick is accustomed to playing the first rubber — PMac says he becomes very jittery waiting if he has to play second, hence, he’s the lead-off man. It’s easier for him to come out not having to deal with a deficit. The reigning US DC team are great champions and no one can take that away from them, but I suppose it could be argued that they’re undeserving of the title, after all the US has ONLY won Davis Cup 32 times. Let’s see Nadal and Co. win this year’s Cup. Nalby will be waiting for Nadal in Argentina; everyone knows the last 2 months of the year belongs to Nalby.


Tejuz Says:

Grendel..

Joachim Johannsson was not just a big server.. he had a big forehand and a steady backhand. Gulbis reminds me a bit of Johannsson. The height.. tall lanky, big server and big forehand.. except that Gulbis has a two-handed backhand… this guy has beaten the likes of Nadal, Roddick etc.. then Johannsson was plagued with injuries and i guess he had already retired from tennis now.At that time i had thought he would be in top 10.


TD (Tam) Says:

dear Von,

“Thanks ever so much for those kind sentiments regarding Roddick. He’s definitely deserving of more praise and respect in lieu of the crudeness that’s spoken/written about him. I’m a huge Roddick fan and it absolutely pains me to read the comments by so many ’sick’ people here on these threads. Some of them just seem to sit and wait for him to sneeze to express their mindless opinions of what they don’t like about him. What do you call anyone who would would refer to a human being as a ‘donkey”? Mentally deranged!! I don’t like to use the word ‘hate’ in my vocabulary, but from the statements I’ve read here, it’s the only word that’s fitting for the cruel statements written. These people harbor ‘hate’ in their hearts, and most of it pertains to the fact that Roddick is American. Further, what really boils my blood is that those who utter such nonsense, would go to the ends of the earth to defend their fave player if the reverse were to occur. Unfortunately, for Roddick and his few remaining fans who post on this site, which I could count on one hand, these critics who are in the majority, can state whatever they like and are applauded by their cohorts for their mindless, sick utterances. They’re just empty-headed, classless vessels and babbling brooks, who are monomaniacal, epitomize cockalorum and are devoid of any decent, thought word, or action.”

I.
LOVE.
YOU.

I did not see any matches today but I am not surprised to see Andy put up a great fight. I continue to be surprised by many people (including Sean) who continue to underestimate Roddick in davis cup and on clay in general. He did make it to the Rome semis this year did he not? I believe an unfortunate injury took him out that season.

Continue to fight the good fight Von! I am with you always in spirit. :) I may not post much nowadays but I appreciate reading you and jane and a few other level headed posters here.


TD (Tam) Says:

There is such a large difference in tennis analysis between fan blogs and real journalism here-

Sean Randall @ tennis-x
“I won’t spend much time discussion Spain-U.S., as I think the depleted U.S. team without Bob Bryan but with Andy Roddick and Sam Querrey is not going to put fear into the hearts of Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer, at least not on a red clay court. And hell, Spain might even beat them on a grass court. So barring a Federal Reserve bailout of the U.S. Davis Cup team – don’t laugh, not a 100% impossibility – Spain might not drop a point in this one.”

Bonnie Ford @ ESPN
“It may be time to tone down the ritual drumbeat of criticism about the American men’s performance on clay. The 20-year-old Querrey reconfirmed that he is to be respected on the surface after a good showing last spring in Europe, and Roddick had won four of his five matches on clay this season before a series of injuries limited his playing time.”

Here is the rest of her excellent article.-
http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/columns/story?columnist=ford_bonnie_d&id=3598050


blah Says:

The altitude did help, but still, it’s against Spain in Madrid, and Querrey really pushed Nadal, up a set and a break and didn’t go away until the last two games. Roddick put on a good performance as well, it could as easily be 2-0 instead of 0-2.

I don’t see the U.S. coming back, but I am still pretty happy with the way they performed in Madrid. Querrey also showed me that there is a young American player that’s worth watching on tour.


Lenny Says:

Von:
I know it rankles, especially when they’re senselessly beating up on your fave, but the best way to deal with these people is ignore them. It’s a waste of typing effort stooping to their level by calling them names. Don’t bother reading their drivel, don’t bother responding. They do it to get a rise from the real fans. Why give them the satisfaction?


Colleen Says:

As the possibility of an Argentina-Spain final is now looming large, with Argentina having home court advantage, it would be folly for Argentina to stick with their beloved clay. The smartest thing would be to pick a HARD COURT. The last time Argentina played at home on hard court? Never, as far as I could tell. But given Nalbandian and Del Potro’s excellence on hard, and it being Nadal’s weakest surface, it seems a no brainer to me. (Having spent some time in Argentina myself, I rarely saw hard courts at all, though I did see a public one in Cordoba.) I doubt they have a stadium with a hard court anywhere. . .


zola Says:

hi everyone,
seems yesterday’s livestream shows the Spain-USA doubles too:

http://www.justin.tv/muchodeportestv


gulu Says:

Hi Von ! Glad to know that u r a Roddick fan. I totally disapprove of the insulting remarks about Roddick.And I can assure u that Roddick isn’t a donkey, he’s rather a fine professional tennis player who doesn’t care about his critics.So don’t worry!


Dan Martin Says:

The U.S. team has played well and will likely pick up the doubles point. A win yesterday would have made Sunday very interesting. However, when you are a heavy underdog and earn some chances at victory it is hard to complain if the chances don’t all go the underdog’s way. This tie has been better than most thought it would be.


von Says:

I’d like to say a wholehearted ‘thank you’ for the encouragement and kind sentiments expressed by some of the posters on this site rgarding Roddick — thank you so very, very much. My post will be lengthy, but sad to say, I’m not one that has lived by Shakepeare’s words of “brevity is the soul of wit”. To wit, I will address each and everyone of you individually for placing a rainbow in what were some very dark clouds yesterday for me. To say I’m very surprised, is putting it mildly, to see that some people actually do care, and are aware of the injustices leveled towards Roddick and the American DC Team, but mainly Roddick.

gulu: Thank you both for yesterday and today. You were so fortright and honest in your remarks which gave me courage to speak up. I never forget a kindness. I look forward to interacting with you in the future. :P

TD(Tam): My friend, thank you so much, and I love you too. You’ve always given me the warm, loving support of another Roddick fan, and have had the courage to speak up regardless of the consequences. My only disappointment, is that your time is limited for posting, but yet, you make the effort in the crucial times to comfort me. You ARE THE VERY BEST. :D

Lenny: Thank you for putting things into perspective; I really do try to ignore the crude remarks by the ‘haters’ but when they are coming from all directions, and believe me they gang up, it becomes too much and I vent. I don’t like briging myself down to their classless level, but I’m afraid I do at times, with some restraint. If I were to actually say what I feel deep down about the hypocrisy and politicking, my post would surely be relegated to the trash can. :)

Jimbojones and blah: Thank you very much for your fair assessment of both Sam’s and Andy’s performances. They played very well, and should give themselves a pat on the back for a job well-done. Had it not been for the crowd’s boisterous behavior which unnerved and exasperated Roddick in the final 2 games, I belieive Andy would have won that match. Berdych suffered a similar Spanish uncouth assualt in the MS in Madrid a couple of years ago. The inept umpire, Carlos Ramos, who utterly dislikes the Americans, especially Roddick, should be disciplined for not taking charge of the match and the crowd.

I think the DC Committee should be more astute and strategic in their umpire placement. How could there be neutralty emanating from a Spanish/Hispanic umpire toward a Spanish crowd? It was absolutely ridiculous. People have commented about the USO crowd’s boisterous behavior; it was triple that from the Spanish crowd, but how subtly overlooked by those who love to criticize the Americans.

Again, to all of the aforementioned posters, my heartfelt thanks. The US, in all probability will lose this tie, but they have nothing to be ashamed of, since they represented their country with class and dignity. :P


Vulcan Says:

Oh brother, how long do we have to listen to this hypocritical crap…somebody pass me a barf bag.


Vulcan Says:

Oh, and by the way, if you are going to spend all of your time attempting to disseminate paragraph after paragraph of useless information on this blog…you might want to occassionally check your facts(say once every summer solstice for starters) Carlos Ramos is from Portugal (which you may not be aware is a different country from Spain). His umpiring the match would be analogous to a Canadian or Brit umpiring
a match here in the states. (I’m sure you be the first person to speak up and complain about that)


Von Says:

Don’t see why anything should bother you, since you had so much fun writing your filthy drivel when Rroddick lost toDdjoko and then the Roddick is a donkey posts.Wwho’s the bigger hypocrite. What happened to your side-kick — she bailed out or riding the broom stick– there’s one for you too..


Sean Randall Says:

Von, “injustices leveled towards Roddick and the American DC Team” which would be what?? I didn’t watch either of the matches, so what happened? Was the crowd overly rowdy? Was Andy not getting the calls??


Sean Randall Says:

Dan, yup. The US teams win the doubles in fifth, something I didn’t think was possible with Bob Bryan sidelined, but credit to the U.S.

Russia, meanwhile, about to take the doubles as well. Looks like this Sunday will mean something in Davis Cup after all.


jane Says:

Hi TD,

Thanks for posting for the link to Bonnie Ford’s piece; I always like her articles and you’re right to identify them as good journalism. I check ESPN regularly specifically for her writing.

Anyhow, I thought Roddick played excellent. Just a couple of points…right at the end made the difference. Sam continues to improve; he’s got a great persona too. I look forward to following Sam next year. I think that Gils Reyes (sp?) is definitely helping with his fitness / movement.


Vulcan Says:

Hehe, “filthy drivel”, now thats dramatic.
I suggest if you have something to say to anyone else on this board that you say it to them directly. I take responsibility for my own comments only.

It seems pretty clear that your’e not just looking for fair words to be spoken about Roddick…you want everyone to bow to him as if he were some kind of deity. It also seems like your’e trying to use your background in psychology to perform some kind of experiment on this blog to see how much sympathy you can elicit for poor, misunderstood, victimized Roddick.

I suggest you pay more attention to the people like myself who, even though we have been very critical of his behavior, have still managed to compliment him sometimes in one way or another.
The same cannot be said for you in regards to Nadal.


jane Says:

I didn’t know the Spanish crowd was rowdy, but Ford’s piece and others here have mentioned that it threw Roddick off. I watched it on a justin feed and had the sound turned off as it was Spanish commentary. That’s a shame; I hate when crowds intervene in matches – particularly tight down to the wire ones. It’s true, if the crowd if overly loud, the ump should say something, to be fair.


jane Says:

I mean, I know the norm of Davis Cup matches is rowdy and partisan crowds, and that’s fine. But in-between and during crucial points, the umpire should try to quell things somewhat. I didn’t see Djoko’s match against Hrbaty but I guess there was even a Slovakian drummer in the crowd trying to rile Novak, and it worked for a bit in the 3rd set until Novak re-grouped.

It’s certainly up for debate – how much is too much from a crowd, and when should the ump intervene? At the USO, when a player yelled out during Rafa vs. Fish, Fish gave Rafa 1st serve and they kicked the heckler out of the stadium. Other times at the USO umps weren’t so quick to react to noisy fans. But it’s the deliberate heckling at key moments that must be addressed, imo.

Speaking of that Serb-Slovak tie, apparently the Slovak teen Lukas Lacko, yet another 19 year old, is not, er, lacking much, and is someone to watch. He pushed Tipsy deep into a 5th.

Congrats to the US make-shift doubles team. Roddick vs. Nadal will be very interesting; I’d love it if Roddick won and pushed this thing to a decider!


Sean Randall Says:

Zola, the altitude definitely helps the Americans, and even moreso if they are big-serving Americans. That said, I’m sure they are extra-watering the courts between sets!

Jane, regarding Roddick, he’s not a clay player nor will he ever be. He can still get a few wins in patches and pick up some smaller titles like Houston against lesser players but against elite claycourts he’s going to lose 90% of the time. And that’s not a knock on him as the same could be said for just about all the American players. So the non-clay rep sticks.

Grendel, I would agree with Tejuz regarding Joachim Johansson. He had some pretty decent groundstrokes to go with his monster serve. Had he avoided injury I’d imagine he’d be among the Top 15 right now.


Vulcan Says:

Its the heckling during the service toss and to a slightly lesser degree during the point that is at issue. Its understood that you can scream your head off at any other time and Davis Cup crowds…because they are more passionate…do that more than regular tour event crowds…I havent seen the end of the DC cup tie singles matches in Spain but I will be the first to say that if the crowd was making noise during the player’s toss that they should have ejected those fans.


gulu Says:

Von,my friend ! Thanks 4 such sweet responses to my posts! Lookin forward to more posts from u. Cheers!!!
Hi zola ! I m very happy to know that u hav read my post and perhaps appreciated it. Sorry 4 my late response.I hav a new friend in you now.


Von Says:

Sean:

The altitude halps anyone who’s serving big. It helped Ferrer’s serve and it sure helped Lopez in doubles today.


Sean Randall Says:

Jane, it’s not Wimbledon, it’s Davis Cup. The players know that. I’m sure the umps try to calm the crowds but in certain environments it’s almost futile.

Again, i didn’t see the matches but in Davis Cup that’s what can you get: very, very rowdy crowds. I for one actually enjoy it even though the crowds often do impact the outcome. But that’s what Davis Cup atmosphere is all about, and that’s what many will argue, myself included, makes Davis Cup so great.

Sure, sometimes the crowds can go to far but for the most part from what I’ve seen in my days they are pretty civilized.


jane Says:

Sean,

I am not saying Roddcik’s best surface is clay; we all know it’s not. However, Roddick pushed Ferrer to 8-6 in the 5th; Ferrer is rather elite on clay, no? Doesn’t it follow then that Roddick *could* do well on clay, perhaps if he applied himself like some, hiring a special claycourt coach etc? Dunno. He does have a bad RG record, and I think, because it’s a slam, it supersedes the wins he has gotten on clay. He’s been to the quarters and semis in Rome, beating the likes of Robredo and Baggy along the way, so he can’t be all that bad on clay. I am interested to see how the match goes with Rafa tomorrow, if it’ll be close or what. Clearly, Rafa is the overwhelming favorite. But I am still interested to see how Roddick can do against him, with Rafa having home crowd and surface advantage.


jane Says:

I agree with Vulcan about the crowds; if it’s during a service toss, that’s too much, and even really loud yelling out during a point should be discouraged. Between points, the crowd can yell, holler, drum, strip, I don’t care; the more the merrier.

And speaking of Wimbledon, did you see the Murray vs. Gasquet match Sean? Now that was Davis-Cup-like. And I liked it. But for the most part the crowd waited until after the point was played to erupt like an overbaked Yorkshire pudding.


Von Says:

“The same cannot be said for you in regards to Nadal.”

You’ve only been posting here for a maximum of 3 months or less, so how would you know what I’ve said about Nadal? I’ve always lauded praises on him, more than he’s deserved and never criticized him. However, when you and Zola began that nonsense during the Toronto MS, by her pretending to not remember what happenened at the AO between Kohls and Roddick — which is her MO BTW to start any type of debate or bait people; she asks these psuedo-innocent questions — that’s when I decided I’ll point out Nadal’s flaws and I mentioned my reason for so doing. there are several threads where she just babbles on and on, and on, non-stop about Roddick, and there’s a point where enough is enough. I’m surprised that you don’t remember. I can find the post and the thread for you to read everything.Tthere was also a post from Shital Green stating to me that I’ve always praised Nadal much more than he did. Maybe you should know a little history before you speak. I’ve yet to see anything positive written by you regarding Roddick.


grendel Says:

Tejuz: yes, I daresay you’re right about Joachim Johansson. In the Roddick match, the American was certainly on top, as I recall, but somehow managed to lose. It is true, poor Johansson suffered dreadfully from injury, came back, beat Nadal as you said, but then succombed to injury again. He has actually retired at a very young age.

What I remember Johansson most for was a terrific tussle with Feliciano Lopez at the A.O. – perhaps 3 or 4 years ago. It went on and on, it was impossible to say who was going to win, and in fact I had to check with my son to recall who actually did win. Because what sticks in the mind is the battle. At the time, it mattered like hell who won. Now, it matters not at all; what remains is the memory of the amazing struggle. It went to something like 16-14, or 14-12, something like that, in the 5th of course.

Oh, and Johansson won. Apparently. Might have been Lopez, though.


gulu Says:

Vulcan, Nadal has carved a special niche for himself in the tennis circle by what he has done this year and has been doing since long.He is a great player and his genius need not be certified by anyone and especially by people like me who are not tennis professionals.But Roddick fans certainly will continue to love him and there is no problem in it.Thanks.


gulu Says:

Vulcan, Nadal has carved a special niche for himself in the tennis circle by what he has done this year and has been doing since long.He is a great player and his genius need not be certified by anyone and especially by people like me who are not tennis professionals.But Roddick fans certainly will continue to love him and there is no problem in it.Thanks and keep writing.


Sean Randall Says:

Jane, yup, David is among the clay elite, but did Roddick win? No. Coming close is great, but winning is the name of the game isn’t it? That said, Andy should get some confidence from it but I don’t think this will necessarily propel him to better clay results in the future. It should help him next time he plays Ferrer, regardless of surface.

And yes, i saw that Gasquet-Murray match. Great atmosphere. Well mannered, well behaved. Definitely Davis Cup-like.

As for tomorrow, I think Andy can scrape a set, but Nadal’s going to win out in the end. I don’t think it will be a blow out.


Von Says:

“It seems pretty clear that your’e not just looking for fair words to be spoken about Roddick…you want everyone to bow to him as if he were some kind of deity.”

I think you’ve got this transposed — this is not relevant to Roddick and myself, but to Nadal and his fanatical fan. Lord help anyone who just mentions his name; an antenna goes up and all reason is swept under the rug. It’s war.


Vulcan Says:

How soon they forget:

Vulcan Says:

Roddick has the best kick serve ever…or…emmm…one of the best forehand squash shots ever…Roddick was part of one of the most entertaining matches in tennis history (vs El Aynaoui)

Posted August 21st, 2008 at 4:22 pm


Von Says:

gulu Says:
“Von,my friend ! Thanks 4 such sweet responses to my posts! Lookin forward to more posts from u. Cheers!!”

You’re welcome and I look forward to exchanging posts with you too. It’s nice to see a Roddick partisan.


Von Says:

Sean:

“David is among the clay elite, but did Roddick win? No.”

You’e got to be kidding. How many titles has Ferrer won on clay? His being in the top 10 is a fluke, one which i think will end pretty soon. I don’t agree that he’s clay elite.


Von Says:

Sean:

“As for tomorrow, I think Andy can scrape a set, but Nadal’s going to win out in the end. I don’t think it will be a blow out.”

for the sake of argument, what would you say or do if Roddick were to put a good walloping on Nadal?


Vulcan Says:

The main thing about Davis Cup…is that its the one event during the year that really puts the spotlight on doubles. Theres currently a barn burner going on between Argentina and Russia.
I hardly ever watch doubles but Davis Cup doubles is something special.


Sean Randall Says:

Von, so you wouldn’t put Ferrer among the 10 best claycourters?? Is that really what you are saying?

You may be right, he may fall out of the overall Top 10, but he’s still a darn good dirtballer.

Re: Roddick tomorrow. I would be 100% stunned if he walloped Rafa. Stunned.

In my opinion, Best case for Andy would be a 7-6, 6-7, 6-4, 7-5 loss. I just can’t see Rafa losing like that on his home soil with a chance to win a tie for his country. And that’s nothing against Andy, i don’t know who would beat Rafa in that circumstance tomorrow.


jane Says:

Von,

Just to respond to your comment that David is not elite on clay:
The reason I mentioned Ferrer’s clay court success to Sean was in support of Andy. I agree with you that Ferrer is not a great, great player, on clay or any other surface, but he’s pretty consistent, or he was in 07 certainly. He only has something like 7 titles, but the majority are on clay: Bucharest, Stuttgart, Bastad, Valencia. So I was suggesting to Sean that Roddick’s pushing David so hard yesterday is proof that Andy can play well on clay. Roddick swept Ferrer aside in sets 2 and 3. It really was a match that Andy could’ve, and maybe should’ve, won.


Vulcan Says:

Roddick won St. Poelten on clay also so its not like he has never had any success on the surface.


Jimbojones Says:

Ferrer got to the qfs at this year’s French Open. He took a set off of Nadal in Barcelona and won Valencia. Ferrer beat Roddick in Cincy and at the Masters Cup semifinals in 2007. He got to the quarterfinal at the Australian Open. Roddick did well and should have won, but losing to Ferrer on clay in Madrid is nothing to be ashamed of. Ferrer belongs in the top 10 right now and if he keeps winning smaller events and being in the final 8 at a few majors that keeps him there. Gilles Simon is #12 and he only lacks Ferrer’s GS results to be higher.


Vulcan Says:

Von Says:

Lord help anyone who just mentions his name; an antenna goes up and all reason is swept under the rug. It’s war.

It sounds like you have some kind of long standing feud with Zola. Im not sure what this has to do with me but suffice it to say that I stand behind all of the comments that I myself have made regarding Roddick and his behavior. I would be willing to wager that I have watched at least as many Roddick matches as you have so Im not fabricating my comments for the sole purpose of irritating you.


Von Says:

sean Randall:

“Re: Roddick tomorrow. I would be 100% stunned if he walloped Rafa. Stunned.”

I asked that question just to see what your response would be, even though I know the odds are stacked very heavily against Andy. I live by hope daily, and I can tell you just as some are certain, you included, that Roddick would or could not pull off the impossible, I hope he can. I’d love to see you become stunned and stumped/lost for words. Now, wouldn’t that be one that would be worth a thread dedicated to good ole Andy Roddick? And, Sean, I’d love to see you eat your words for once regarding Roddick. Please Lord, let it happen!! I pray too you know.


Von Says:

jane:

I understand what you’re saying about Andy and you were being positive that he pushed Ferrer, with which I agree. I feel that Andy should have won that match, and Ferrer got lucky. Roddick was dominant throughout that match, and had it not been for those two last games where he got frustrated with the crowd, he would have won. The guy was just cruising and I’m still stunned that he lost. His bent head and dejected look spoke volumes. I may sound biased, but regardless of Ferrer’s prowess on clay, I feel Roddick is by far the better player on other surfaces. Andy has 27 titles as opposed to Ferrer’s 7? 8?. But, Ferrer has the edge on clay due to his running game, which I see slowing down BTW, and when that goes, I believe he’ll fall in the ranking. He got into the top 10 from the ’07 USO, Cincy, and TMC. However, this year he hasn’t covered those points for the USO and Cincy. He has Tokyo to defend, let’s see what happens.


Von Says:

Vulcan:

It hasn’t been long standing, but only from that very point where you entered the picture on the Kohls question. However, it was building and I had reached a saturation point. When that happens with me, the heavens opens and a thunderstorm erupts. I remember telling you you walked into a loaded gun, but you didn’t understand. You fell into the innocent question/bait. Anyway, I’m willing to put this to rest. I’ll respect anyone’s fave, if they respct mine. One hand washes the other. We can speak about something once or twice, but when it becomes incessant babble, then that’s enough. As far as I’m concerned, there’s no need to keep hammering on the same nail.


TD (Tam) Says:

Hi everybody again!

Von and jane thanks for your responses. I am curious to know who you are cheering for in the Russia-Argentina matches? and who will you cheer for in the final? There is no sinister reasoning behind this I just want to know because I repsect your opinions. :)

Sean-”Sure, sometimes the crowds can go to far but for the most part from what I’ve seen in my days they are pretty civilized.”

Oh Sean just you wait until see what the Argentines have in store for team Espana! they are notoriously uncivilized you will be shocked .

Sean-”Jane, yup, David is among the clay elite, but did Roddick win? No. Coming close is great, but winning is the name of the game isn’t it?”

Yes winning the game counts but that is not exactly the point. The point is that you and all the other “US stinks on clay” critics I’ve read gave the US no chance at all to win, yourself gave them no chance to win any POINTS, you could not be bothered to write up a decent preview. You thought it would be embarrassingly lopsided in favour of Spain, well guess what? the US won many points, they won a few sets off of the heavily favoured Spain team on their absolute worst surface.

They did not win the match but they did prove you and all of their other critics wrong [again]. To me that is almost as good as winning. ;)


Vulcan Says:

Von Says:

I remember telling you you walked into a loaded gun, but you didn’t understand.

Youre absolutely right, I have no clue what you are talking about there because here is all that was said:

Vulcan Says:
Wow Roddick vs Kohlschreiber (most likely) tommorrow, after their match in Australia Im gonna be tuned in for that one.

zola Says:
vulcan,

how was the match in Australia? I completely forgot. I think here with the home crowd Roddick is the favorite ( and he has already won Cincy before).

How on earth are you reading any sliver of deception into what was said in those statements?
Are you sure you don’t want to rethink whether or not your being paranoid about Zola trying to be deceptive…I mean comeon.

So I agree lets move on to bigger and better things:

You said that the last 2 games of the Roddick match were marred by some type of controversy with the crowd…again…what on earth are you talking about here…I watched the end of the match and saw absolutely nothing of the sort…what specifically were you referring to?


roddick is a donkey Says:

It is going to be so much fun to see nadal flog the donkey tomorrow.

CANNOT WAIT. Go donkey Go!


jane Says:

TD,

Personally, I am hoping for Argentina. And that’s mainly because they have never won Davis Cup and Nalby and JMDP seem really into it. Russia, however, has won a number of times, plus Safin isn’t playing for me to cheer on and swoon over ;-).

In addition, if Spain do win against the USA champs, then I think Argentina can give Spain a real run for their money.

——

Von,

I am not sure how much longer Ferrer will hang around at the top either. Roddick certainly has a far better tennis CV – the only player currently on tour to have been in the top ten as long as Federer, lest we forget. He can’t be all that bad, on clay or anywhere else!


Von Says:

TD:

Hi, I’d like to see Argentina win and I’m rooting for them just in the event the US doesn’t make it. Hey, I can hope can’t I. I pray too you know. I’d like to see Nalby achieve something in DC since he is one, like Roddick, who puts his soul into everything DC for his country. They are one set of spicy South Americans, the Argentines, and that Soccer guy, Maldonao (sp?), my hudband told me his name, since I’m not an ardent soccer fan, well that guy kicks up a riot for Argentina — he travels with them. I hope they choose a super fast court and big Dave orchestrates some of his beautiful, magical tennis moves. Oh WOW, that would be great to see. I hope he doesn’t disappoint me and play like a ‘potted plant’ puting roots down in the ground like he did at Queens this year.

“Oh Sean just you wait until see what the Argentines have in store for team Espana! they are notoriously uncivilized you will be shocked.”

There’s a very bad bias towards others of Spanish origin who are not from Spain by the Spaniards and the Argentines are acutely aware of this. The Spaniards are prejudiced toward those in their own country — they have a sort of hierarchy system of origin. They will have a tough time in Argentina.

Re: Sean’s comments, I no longer get upset by them. He has freedom of speech/press and the delete button in his favor. I only hope every time he speaks badly about the Americans they prove him wrong. What better way to handle one’s critics.
_____________
jane;

Only time will tell with the top 10. I’m waiting for Andy to prove that he’s re-inventing his tennis, and from what I’ve seen thus far, he’s working on it. I have a lot of patience and I believe in him. Tug MacGraw of the NY Mets always said “Ya gotta believe”. I’m doing just that.
_____________

Roddick is a donkey:

Sssshame on you!! I can’t believe you are so creatively limited to use such a oost name. Know what, I think you’re madly in love with the guy. So sorry, he’s taken. He says he’ll send you some cheetos. Don’t get too greedy eating them all at once, cause you’ll choke and it’s very difficult to perform CPR on a donkey. Whoa boy!!.
_____________

Vulcan;

I’ve said all there is to say. Put my comments down to being irascible and creatively inventive in the lying department, or maybe a bit touched in the head. As I stated, I’m moving on and I hate hammering on the same nail over and over and over again. Enough said.


zola Says:

gulu,
sure you have a friend here. Hope you come and post here more often.

Vulcan,
Thanks for your nice words. I am not worried about what “Von” implies about me. In fact I don’t even read her posts anymore. She is just full of hate. My huge sin was to say that Roddick’s attitude towards umpires is becoming irritating ( after he did something in summer). She raised hell after that and now she can’t let go. But I will write what I think because this is a tennis forum and people should be able to express their views without being bullied and because there are many civilized fans (among them Roddick fans) here who can take the criticism towards a player without going insane. That’s what makes me come back and post here.

Anyway,
US is alive in the Davis Cup semis thanks to the efforts by M.Bryan and Fish. Honestly I thought(and hoped) Lopez and Verdasco would win. Hugely because I thought Bryan and Fish would not be able to connect as well as they should because they never played with each other. It means I underestimated them. Fish played and served excellent and they communicated very well.
I thought at the beginning Verdasco was playing better than Lopez, but then the two breaks came on his serve!

I think this gives a huge boost to the chances of the US team. Rafa is the clay king and everything. Still, I can’t say tomorrow is a given. It will be a very tough match. Roddick was very focused during his match with Ferrer. He has the advantage of his serve and the experience and altitude will help him. But he is not as tall as Querrery, so the high bouncing balls to his backhand might be more effective against him. Rafa needs to have perfect concentration. Seems he still doesn’t have his range on that court. He had 17 UFE in the first set against Querrey. He managed to reduce them and get more winners, but still, I wish they could have gone to 3-0 today. The crowd is very loud and I think there was a scream or two when Roddick was serving against Ferrer that PMAc mentioned. I am sure if I was playing I would have been annoyed.

Same thing for the Russians. They lost the singles and won the doubles.live rubber tomorrow! Very interesting.

Hope Esapana! can pull it off tomorrow. But whatever happens, both sides should be commended for making this such an exciting event.

Sean,
They watered the court in between each set. Still the court started drying after a couple of games. I am not sure if those dry/wet patches affect the way the ball bounces.

btw these are links to the “pre-match ” press conferences (Thursday):

The Spanish team:
http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=52230

The US team:
http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=52229

sorry for the long post!


zola Says:

Roddick is a ….
I hope you understand that this is becoming very irritating. Can you state you your criticisms without insulting a player?

Sean
does this site have a policy against insults and personal attacks? if not, why?


Von Says:

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2007-11-24/335.php

“My huge sin was to say that Roddick’s attitude towards umpires is becoming irritating ( after he did something in summer). She raised hell after that and now she can’t let go.”

From summer eh, how about ’07 and before to the present time. Just one of many threads – out of 28 comments, 7 were from the voice of reason loving Roddick to death. More threads to follow.


Polo Says:

To Von, Vulcan and Zola:

Please, stop your blog-fighting over Roddick. It is simply a waste of time because Roddick is already on the downhill slope of his tennis career and will very soon completely fizzle out. His twitchy, tic-loaded game will not win him another major ever again. Pretty soon he will be gone


Von Says:

Polo: I know you’re an ardent Fed fan and I’m very happy for you that Fed has been able to win the USO. Good to see you posting again, now that Fed has won a GS. I sincerely hope that Fed continues to go up-hill and NOT down-hill like Roddick. Thanks for the prediction on Roddick’s career.


zola Says:

Polo
I have nothing against Roddick or any other player. I have expressed my views , negative or positive about many players. About their games or attitudes.I may or may not like what they say or do. That doesn’t mean I do not respect their efforts. I have no fight with anyone, but I won’t be bullied.

I agree completely that this is a tennis site and should remain so. That’s the reason we are all here. I am glad that you reacted to this nonsense. Thanks.


zola Says:

Back to tennis,
I have written many times how I wished the DC to be played during a two week period every 2 years or so. So that this conflict with the tour did not happen. But watching the crowd and the venue in Madrid ( and last time here ) I can see how the home crowd can be an advantage and how it can become a national event.It will not be the same if it was played like a grand slam.
The other alternative is to play it like the soccer world cup. The early rounds can be played in respective countries and the quarters and finals in a week in a host country and the whole event can be every 2 or 4 years.

The tour is already too long. The players have to participate in 9 Master series and 4 Grand slams and a few small tournaments. When it comes to DC, aome can’t make it because if injury, schedule conflict, etc.

I am not sure what is the right balance. I like this “home crowd” atmosphere, but the players need to play 4 more times in addition to their already hectic schedule.

I guess I still want the DC to be played every two or four years and in a more concentrated way. If it will remain this way, then the schedule needs to be balanced. I think instead of giving ranking points, the ATP can let the Davis cup players drop one master series ( in addition to the one the can already drop).


gulu Says:

Zola, Thanks!I am feeling quite good to see that you want more of my posts here.We surely will have lots of fun in the future as tennis is getting just so much more interesting!! I’m lovin it!By the way,please tell me who are your favourite tennis players among the male? How are you Von?You too please write to me about your favourite tennis players.Waitin eagerly 4 your reply.Take care.


gulu Says:

Hi Von! I m sorry as my previous post looks strange and my address to you can’t be distinguished properly from my address to Zola. Yet I hope u have read it n will soon reply to me.


Vulcan Says:

zola Says:

The tour is already too long. The players have to participate in 9 Master series and 4 Grand slams and a few small tournaments.

Yes but even though technically they are required to play the Masters series events typically the top 64 don’t show up for every event. The top players, who usually go deeper in the tournaments, frequently just cite an injury or some other reason to withdraw from the next tournament. The thing is if you start eliminating tournaments…the lower ranked guys who don’t go deep…and who rely on playing in every tournament to make a living may get shafted. So it seems that shortening the schedule might help the top players but not the other guys.


Von Says:

“gulu Says:
Hi Von! I m sorry as my previous post looks strange and my address to you can’t be distinguished properly from my address to Zola. Yet I hope u have read it n will soon reply to me.”

I’d be happy to supply the names of the players I support, but do you really want to be interacting with someone like me who is thought of as a ‘bully’ and an ‘hateful’ person? I doubt it. I’ve been seriously considering not posting here for a while, but posting can become addictive and it’s difficult to go cold-turkey and withddraw all at once. My resaon for so doing is because this site is supported by predominanty the fans of the top 3 who are non-Aamericans, e.g., Federer, Nadal and Djokovic. Being a fan of an American player, roddick, makes it difficult to interact with the 3 groups of fans because we share very little in common. I post here because I’ve made friends with some of the posters who are very nice despite they’re fans of the other players. There are little groups and being a Roddick fan, of which there are just a handful, who post irregularly, there’s not much to discuss. I’m sure you can see by now how much Roddick is disliked by so many. Anyway, if you’re still interested in interacting about tennis and don’t mind discussing such with a Roddick fan, I’ll be happy to interact with you.

My favourite male players in order of preference are: (1) Andy roddick, (2) Marat Safin, (3) Andy Murray, and (4) Sam querrey. I used to be a huge Sampras fan, but he’s now retired.

Who are the players you support? I’ll hazard a guess: Nadal, but you like and appreciate Roddick too. That’s fine with me. I would be willing to discuss anything about Safin, Rroddick, Murray, Querrey and even Fed, although he’s not in my list of favourites, but’s it’s hands-off Nadal for me, due to the problems with some of his fans.

I’m going to make a conscerted effort to post less in the future, but feel free to discuss anything with me whenever we’re both on line, or you could leave a post addressed to me and whenever I come on line, I;’ll answer you. Hopefully, that’s convenient for you and I look forward to exchanging posts and ideas with you in the future. Thanks for your kindness.


zola Says:

gulu,
so glad you posted again. I am mainly a Rafa fan, but I get excited about almost any player who comes up with an improvementin his game. Right now Murray, Gulbis, Cilic and Ancic are those I like to watch a bit more( I like most of the young guns….they are all very exciting). I like watching Monfils, but he gets himself injured somehow. Gasquet’s backhand when it is on….

Fed’s new serve and Nalbandian’s blazing game last year in MAdrid and later were very impressive too.

Roddick was playing great at the beginning of the year, beating RAfa, Fed and Djoko one after another, before being hampered by injury. I am glad he has recruited PMAc as a coach and I hope all the injuries are now gone.

Vulcan
I have to go back and see how many times the top 10 have not played in a master series. ( I don’t know if I can do top 64!). They have to play all the master series. CAn skip one due to injury or fatigue and that’s it. rom 2009 the rules are more strict and they will lose ranking points as well.

But I understand that reducing the number of tournaments might hurt the lower-ranked players. So perhaps, they can keep the number of tournaments, but reduce the number of obligatory ones. That might benefit both the higher-ranked and lower-ranked players.

Well,
I missed today’s match live. but I am going to watch it in a bit on Versus ( what a channel! I have to write about it later!)

*********
to find versus in your area look at the link at the very first post. :)


Sean Randall Says:

TD (Tam), where did I write the U.S. had “no chance to win any POINTS”.


Von Says:

gulu:

BTW, I forgot to mention that i love nalbandian’s game as well.


Von Says:

Sean:

“So barring a Federal Reserve bailout of the U.S. Davis Cup team – don’t laugh, not a 100% impossibility – Spain might not drop a point in this one.”

I’m not answering for TD, but from the above, I came to the same conclusion, as she did.


jane Says:

Sad for the USA. They worked so hard to get back that trophy and it was really nice to see them hoist it last year. I think Roddick was demoralized from that loss to Ferrer, which he was a hairsbreath from winning, and Rafa was extra motivated today. I see Sam was really close against Lopez too.

So all-in-all, congrats to Spain for their win; and congrats to the USA for keep the matches on clay tight overall.

I’ve missed all the matches so far today: I see Serbia conceded the last rubber to Slovakia in a walkover; too bad Britain didn’t win – quite sad about that. Looks like Davydenko has pulled ahead of Nalby 2 sets to 1.

Come on Argentina!! Get to the final already.


Von Says:

jane:

Who won in the Serbia/Slokvakia ties overall. I haven’t been keeping track of their matches. I’m hoping that argentina wins today. they lost a very tough doubles match yesterday.

“So barring a Federal Reserve bailout of the U.S. Davis Cup team – don’t laugh, not a 100% impossibility – Spain might not drop a point in this one.”

I suppose Sean was 100% right about the impossibility of the US winning none of the points — they indeed needed that Federal Reserve bailout. I hope everyone is smiling from ear to ear.


Vulcan Says:

Hmmm, I sure do like OVAL track car racing. Also im very fond of CIRCULAR arguments. Come to think of it the ORBITs of the stars are fascinating. Well enough pontificating…I’m off to Dunkin DONUTS.


jane Says:

Von,

Djoko, Tipsy, then Troicki / Zimonjic all won in the first 3 matches, then when Troicki won today, they conceded the tie and gave Slovakia the walkover.

I don’t feel so confident about Argentina at the moment with Davy blowing Nalby off the court (4 – love in the 4th, Davy up two sets). That means everything will fall on Del Potro’s shoulders, and he’s playing Andreev, not easy to beat. We’ll see. It’s a lot of pressure for JMDP, but he does have the home crowd.


Von Says:

jane;

Thanks for the info on Slovakia. I’m interested because Skorocel is Slovakian and I would have liked for him to have something to smile about. I’m glad they won the walkover dead-rubber, at least the scoreline doesn’t an overall 5-0 score. I’m so disappointed about Great Britain. I thought Andy and Co. would have pulled off the upset and won their tie. Too bad.

Roddick played as though he didn’t care one way or the other, for which I don’t blame him — his spirit was broken from that match with Ferrer. If Argentina doesn’t pull off their tie againt Russia then it’s so long until next year for them. I had hoped Nalby would be able to get to the final and possibly win a medal. Andreev didn’t look very impressive when he played against Nalby on Friday, hence. DelPotro could win that match and Argentina could after all be in the final. We’ll see.


Giner Says:

Ouch, those stats were not good for Roddick. Only 1 forehand winner and 1 backhand winner compared to 21 and 11 for Nadal.

Roddick won 3 of 15 points at net, and only matched Nadal on aces (8 each), though he did hit 21 service winners compared to 12. He offered 16 break opportunities, saving 11, hit fewer winners and more errors.

Without seeing the match, I can only guess from the stats that it was a masterful performance from Nadal.

I underestimated Roddick the other day, but I also underestimated the Spanish lefty duo yesterday, granted Bryan wasn’t playing with his brother. There’ve been quite a number of five setters the past few days, which is always great entertainment in Davis Cup.

Argentina is in trouble at the moment. Their place in the final is not a forgone conclusion any longer. They took a tough loss in doubles, and in hindsight should not have played Nalbandian in doubles.

If Russia wins, they will likely pick a fast indoor court to host Spain. I don’t think the Spanish will be fazed too much by it unless Safin plays and he is ‘on’.


jane Says:

Von,

Something to smile about?

From the Davis Cup website:

“Roddick gets the fans on his side

Having struggled with the mostly Spanish fans on Friday, Roddick got them on side when he raised his hands as if to ask them to cheer for a missed first serve during the third set. The fans responded by good-naturedly chanting “Roddick, Roddick” and the American player smiled up at the stands.

“Yeah, they’re only going to do that if your getting your butt kicked,” said a good-natured Roddick afterwards.”

There you go! Graceful in defeat, and a sense of humor to boot.


Von Says:

jane;

That’s Roddick for you — he says it like it is — no hedging and playing verbal games. He’s truthful to his own detriment. Reminds me of myself.

It was a very lack luster match, and Roddick just let Nadal hit the balls. There wasn’t anything spectacular that I saw from Nadal’s performance either; the same running to get the balls, but not any fantastic WOW shots, like hitting all the angles, painting the lines. I suppose Andy figured what the hell let him get the balls — if he wants it, go get them. Andy’s a one of a kind and regardless of whether he’s over the hill, he’ll always be my fave, similar to Safin. They both have the type of personalities that you’ve got to love.

Today, at 5:00pm if you’re interested, and probabably it will be on JustinTV, the final of the women’s match will be played. They’re showing it on the Tennis channel.


gulu Says:

Von,I love your posts so very much!You hav thanked me for being kind.Now I want to thank you for giving me so much love.Love you and will always look forward to your responses.You may be hated by others,but for me you are one of the most lovable persons.I guess you will be surprised(and also happy)to know that you are my first friend on this site! And now some serious tennis stuff from me.You know one thing?Believe me or not,I would like to admit that I am not convinced that there has ever been or will be a better player than PISTOL PETE.He in my opinion is as good as any great player to have ever played tennis.And as far as Roddick is concerned,I have never doubted his ability and sportsmanship.He has been unfortunate,that’s all.John Mc.Enroe is an American and a tennis legend,but I was really hurt when I heard him openly declaring that Federer,Nadal and Djokovic are way better than him!Now it’s so ridiculous!I definitely lost some respect for Mc.Enroe that day as I found that instead of encouraging Roddick who is the native of his country,he is demoralising him by such rash statements.What could poor Roddick hav done when his own countrymen treated him so badly and turned their back to him?And to add insult to his injury ,the media also started criticising him mercilessly.But thanks to his fighting spirit, he’s still moving on leaving past disappointments behind him.Kudos to Roddick and kudos to his fans! Now over to Safin.I think he’s one of the very few players who can beat Federer even when Fed’s playing his best tennis.Whenever Safin gets focussed and determined to win,he becomes unbeatable.I will be most disappointed if Murray doesn’t win a grand slam.I have a feeling within me that Murray will end the grandslam drought for Britain.Sam Querrey should not be judged by his innocent looks.He has rattled even Rafa,that too not for once but twice.I must be honest to you that I didn’t consider him that much dangerous.But when I saw the live telecast of his U.S.Open match against Rafa on my tv,I was forced to change my notion about Sam.And particularly the way Sam played against Rafa recently in the Davis Cup match on the red clay,I have to give him a thumbs-up from my side.Why Nalbandian has not won a grand slam in his career,I still fail to understand.I would like to tell you that Federer is my favourite player among the current.I am a Fed fan and shall continue to be loyal to him for the rest of my life. And finally for my Sweet Von! Please don’t start posting less to me and other friends of yours on this site or I’ll miss u.


Giner Says:

“You’e got to be kidding. How many titles has Ferrer won on clay? His being in the top 10 is a fluke, one which i think will end pretty soon. I don’t agree that he’s clay elite.”

Von, you can’t fluke a place in the top 10, and he has been there for quite a while. Without winning big titles, to be top 5 or 6 like he has been requires consistency throughout. You can fluke win a match or tournament or two, but to stay in the top 10 requires you to back up those results with consistency. An interesting case would be Nalbandian’s Madrid+Paris double in 2007. He had a forgettable year except those two big titles. You could argue that he fluked them, but you can’t fluke two wins against Federer and Nadal, and one win against Djokovic in this short space of time. It took skill to do what he did, unfortunately he just couldn’t keep it up. I would wager that had he qualified for Shanghai that year, he would have won it (he has won it before, beating Federer in 5 sets from 7-6 7-6 down).

Ferrer is a top 10 clay court player, higher placed than Roddick. He’s a semi-finalist at the French, losing to Nadal. Who would you rate as the best clay court players at the moment?

I’d say my list of more than 10 would include (in no particular order) Nadal, Federer, Djokovic, Ferrer, Davydenko, Nalbandian, JMDP, Gonzalez, Verdasco, Robredo, Almagro, Wawrinka, Gasquet, Murray.

If you want to argue with that, you’ll have to name some players not on my list, and who are in form (former good players like Gaudio, Coria, Moya, Ferrero don’t count).

No matter how you cut it, on clay Ferrer is of a higher standing than any American player. The reason he hasn’t won as many titles is because Nadal is hogging them all. Winning a clay event in Houston against other Americans isn’t the same as winning in Vina Del Mar, Stuttgart, Valencia, Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Acapulco, Munich, etc..

Of course, the real measuring stick is Roland Garros (and the three AMS). The record for American men at RG as of late hasn’t been a pretty sight.

The guys Ferrer loses to on clay are not the guys Roddick consistently beats. This year (and I agree it wasn’t his best year) they were: Robredo, Monfils, Kohlschreiber, Verdasco, Stepanek, Nadal, and Nadal again. Kohls and Stepanek were upsets, but the rest of the guys were fair game against him (except Nadal).

To be fair, Roddick did play great this year getting to the Semi in Rome and it was a big improvement over his past years. This isn’t a knock on Roddick. I am just strongly disagreeing with how you dismiss Ferrer’s clay court abilities and his spot in the top 10. You’ll have to name better players than him outside of the usual top 3 (they are in a different tier to the rest of the game) to make a case. There aren’t a whole lot of them.

You’re an advocate of positive thinking, which is a good thing. But realistically, for Roddick to beat a guy like Ferrer on clay, he’s not only going to have to play great; Ferrer has to not play great, because if both played their best he won’t be winning.


Roddick graciously humiliated as usual Says:

Talk about one-sided. Roddick not only sat on the dynamite, he helped light it. He should light a cigar while he’s at it and remember that he used to have a forehand.


jane Says:

Giner you forgot Monfils; he can be dangerous on clay, as he showed getting to the semis this year.


Giner Says:

Von says:

“Roddick should have won that match and he IS a much better player than Ferrer. He’s won 27 titles as opposed to Ferrer’s 8, won a GS and made it to the finals of 4 GS.”

There is no argument that Roddick is a better overall player than Ferrer. The context we are talking about is clay. None of Roddick’s GS finals were on clay, and of his 27 titles, there was only one clay title outside of Houston. I give him full credit for that title, because I think he beat some quality players to win it. Without checking, I would presume that most if not all of Ferrer’s 8 titles were on clay.

If this tie was played on grass or hard court, I would agree that Roddick would be favourite. The way it turned out, I would guess that Roddick played one hell of a match, and Ferrer might have been a little bit off. I don’t know about the latter, for I didn’t see it, but despite the result, on paper Ferrer had to be considered the favourite. It’s Davis Cup. Things happen. Paper isn’t everything.

It’s even conceivable (though less and less likely) that Federer will win a French title off Nadal one day. It would not surprise me a great deal if that happened. That wouldn’t change the fact that before the match, Nadal would be still have been the odds-on favourite.


zola Says:

Finally done with watching the Spain-US match. Roddick gave it his best, but came up short. I think the rain and the extra humidity helped Rafa’s timing and he was more concentrated today. Perhaps knowing how important this match was.

The best game of the match was the ninth on the third set. Roddick came back from 0-40 and erased 5 match points to win the game, but Rafa won the next game and the mathc.

Roddick had the crowd cheering for him in the same set. He raised his hands for support and the crowd wend Rooodddick…Rodddick …for him…so a great atmosphere and a good match.

gulu,
Before watching RAfa, I followed Sampras for years.The highlight for me was his final in Australia with Courier. It was a very emotional.
Querrey played very well against Rafa in US Open as well. He is tall and has a double-handed backhand and for a tall guy moves great. I think Nalby can win a slam if he wants.he needs to focus better. He is just so good.

******
Nalby was ahead against Davydenko this morning but apparently lost the match. Now the pressure is on JMDP. I think he was ahead a break. Either country will be a tough opponent for Spain, since it will be an away match and I will be surprised if they choose clay.

Jane,
congratulations. Serbia and Croatia won their ties.Romania too ( I don’t know many of their players). England lost the tie though.

**********
well, a great weekend of tennis.


Vulcan Says:

zola Says:

well, a great weekend of tennis

Zola, its not over yet…there is still a great match being contested between Del Potro and Andreev. These young guys are a new breed, they seem to play equally well on all surfaces.


zola Says:

In other news, Safina beats Kuznetsova to win Tokyo. Go Dinara!


grendel Says:

Well, well. So now we’re gonna see what del Potro’s made of. I’m sticking my neck out and am saying I already know. He’s not only good, he’s tough, and he’ll pull through against the tricky Andreev. I greatly look forward to seeing him in Shanghai. Too often at the Masters, you get one and sometimes two players (out of only 8!) who just aren’t there. They’re just there to make the bloody numbers up. Hard to credit, eh? Last year, it was Gasquet and – Djokovic. It’ll be a different story with the Djoker this year, I’m sure. And I’m going for del Potro making it to the semis. Just have a feeling about this lad.

“too bad Britain didn’t win – quite sad about that.” (Jane). Britain is a one man team, which makes it a little difficult to win. The maths doesn’t seem to add up, somehow, whichever way you turn it. Bogdanovic is now 24, and they’ve been saying what a great talent he is for the last 20 years or so. Very promising fellow, Bogdanovic. When he matures – give him a decade or two (we’re late developers in the British Isles you know; sometimes, we go straight from youth to middle age and seem to miss out on the “in your prime” bit; we’ve been known to suffer from precocious senility, too) – yes, when Bogdanovic matures, we’re all expecting great things from him. Meanwhile,vast sums of money are poured into British tennis, coaches of renown are gathered from all corners of the earth, Sue Barker excitedly interviews somebody or other about the prospects for British tennis – and Alex Bogdanovic continues to show exceptional promise.

As a matter of fact, it is cruel to laugh at Bogdanovic, who seems to be a pleasant young man, more out of P.G.Wodehouse than the rigours of the ATP tour. He takes the rap for the fact that the British do not take tennis seriously in any real sense. I live in one of the great cities of England (not London), and the tennis courts which are available for the public to play in are often a disgrace. Nets are stolen, vandalised, there is virtually no maintenance, your friendly teenage louts are often in evidence, deeming the courts more suitable for their particular hobbies than tennis – cycling around aimlessly with one foot trailing along the ground, threatening to skateboard but somehow not quite getting round to it probably because it’s a bit of an effort really. I was actually playing with my son, having quite an enjoyable game when about 7 or 8 (there’s always 7 or 8, never just 1 or 2)prize specimens of the human race came strolling across the park, and decided to take a short cut. The short cut meant lounging across the tennis courts, including the one we were playing on, and at a speed, too, which rendered it unclear whether they were going backwards or forwards, or perhaps they were about to settle down for a good rest. Hard work being a hoody these days, you know. Of course, there were 7 or 8 of them, having about them that peculiar air of aggression which sheer listlessness alone can engender. I think the fact that two people were attempting to play tennis was quite a challenge to them. What? Actually do something which appears to have some sort of purpose about it, however inept or trivial? Oh, no. Can’t have that.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why Briain does not have a proper davis cup team, and will continue not to do so.

Meanwhile, fabulously rich coaches pour into London and become even more fabulously rich. Any of you lot know how to play tennis well? Come to London, and pocket yourself a hundred thou. Don’t expect job satisfaction, in the sense of getting results – but you a bit overextended on the mortgage front? Come to London, and we’ll fill your pockets.


Giner Says:

jane:

“Giner you forgot Monfils; he can be dangerous on clay, as he showed getting to the semis this year.”

Oops. I knew I missed at least a few. Even Hewitt is worthy of a mention, though he hasn’t won any titles on clay. He has had some big wins against quality clay players (some of them FO champs).


zola Says:

Vulcan
right! How can I forget JMDP in a decider rubber? here is a link:

http://tvgoicodeportes2.es.tl/

Grendel,
I am with you on JMDP. Ket’s see if he can pull it off here. Also agree that GB is a one-man team. I expected their double team to do better.


grendel Says:

“Even Hewitt is worthy of a mention, though he hasn’t won any titles on clay. He has had some big wins against quality clay players” -oddly enough, Hewitt gave Nadal two tough matches on clay in 2007 (could have won one of them), but was taken to the cleaners on grass this year by the Spaniard. This says either: although Hewitt has a great record on grass, his game is inherently more suited to clay (I’ve always believed this) it’s just that as an Australian he’s had more practice on grass; or: Nadal is getting much better on grass; or: Hewitt’s getting long in the tooth.

Del Potro a set and a game up. It’s been a funny old draw, this, so one ought to say: anything could still happen. But I’m not going to say that. Del Potro cruising to a win, people. Del Potro’s the new – ahem – know what I mean….


zola Says:

grendel,
quite amazing story about tennis courts in your city. It helps a lot to have free tennis courts that you can play in. I am lucky to have found a few where I live. There is one that had no nets and kids would just use it as a biking ground. We found new ones. There are some cracks in the ground, but at least they have nets and are maintained by the city.
I had a trip to Australia and could not find a free court either. I finally found a place where you could pay to play in a group. I guess we are lucky in US to have these free courts.


Vulcan Says:

Zola, so true about our public courts here in the states…we are spoiled compared to the rest of the world I think. Where I live we have numerous public courts with high quality metal halide lights which are all free. It seems like the norm in other parts of the world is that you have to pay to play in a private club.


jane Says:

grendel,

Feeling a tad cynical are we? Maybe you’ve the right, I dunno. Don’t live there, don’t know the state of the courts of hoody-boys, but loved it when I visited about a decade ago. Love Britain music, fashion, literature, history.

BUT they sure haven’t had much success on the tennis front, that’s for sure.

I’d say it was a two-person team given that Jamie is not a bad doubles player. So yes, the odds were stacked against them. I still wanted to see them through, though.

Speaking of tennis success, JMDP is having no problems with Andreev thus far: 6-4, 6-2, leading into the third. I am looking forward to seeing them play Spain in the final. It’s a tough one to call.

JMDP has a couple of people to scale to get to the Masters Cup, but I would indeed like to see him there, instead of Wawrinka or something. This could be a very exciting Masters Cup, with new players, and a few “vets”, and those in-between. Anything could happen.


jane Says:

Er, in Canada, in many cities, we have loads of lovely nets and courts, maintained beautifully as well, but um, we’ve got no players the likes of Murray. So who knows what leads to what. Cause and effect is never that clear. Wasn’t it the Serbs (sorry to bring up this oft-repeated tale) who played in a swimming pool? Resources don’t lead to desire is all. Maybe a little success spurs things on?


gulu Says:

Hi Zola!Here we go! About Monfils I must let you know that I was about to fall from my seat while watching his French Open semifinal against Fedex!!He was playing very well and was in no mood to hand over the match to Federer.What I also felt during that match was that Federer was not at his best either.He was double-faulting,making unforced errors which he could have avoided and was not looking confident at all.I hope that you’ll believe me if I tell you that I was for the first time in my life frightened at the thought of Fed facing Rafa in the French Open this year because I observed that all wasn’t well with him this year.Something was just wrong this time,sorry for not being able to explain you how I felt at that time.The very thought however that kept coming to my mind was that may be,this would be the year when Fed will not be able to push Rafa to four sets and will be beaten in straight sets and that happened as well!That was very tough for me,but thanks to the humbleness of Rafa and the respect he showed to Roger,I could console myself.But then everyone starting from Borg to Mc Enroe and the media,all started their predictions that Roger will not win the Wimbledon this year and started embarassing and pressurising him.They straight off relegated Fed to a secondary position in the All England Club and placed Nole and Rafa over him as if Fed has no chance at all this time at the Wimbledon Championship.And when Federer lost Wimbledon you yourself know what happened in its aftermath.Finally the tough time started for the Fed fans and I swear I stood by him with all my strength and sincerity.The time between Federer’s Wimbledon loss and U.S.Open win was the toughest time that Fed fans had to endure. The world is so cruel that it all comes down to cut-throat competition.When Fedex won Wimbledon in 2007,I was overjoyed for a moment and became sad the next moment when I saw the face of a dejected Nadal who fought so fiercely to win,but fell just short.I started wondering whether I should celebrate the win of my favourite player or not?Because that final would not have been so great if Rafa had not challenged Fed the way he did.I still remember the teary eyed Rafa of 2007 Wimby and the tearful Roger of Wimby 2008. It is hard to digest for a guy like me that these tennis players are under so much pressure always and so much is at stake all the time they face each other in a match.They have no respite at all.The opportunist media persons change their tone every now and then.Just recall what happened this year?When Djokovic won the Aus.Open at the beginning of the year everyone was going mad over him.Media started buzzing as if Djokovic has already devoured Fedex and Rafa.Then after the victory of Nadal in Roland Garros and Wimbledon 2008 and the great Wim final,everyone forgot about the guy named Djokovic.So this is all what the tennis players have to go through.Is this the only reward they get for their blessed qualities?I was thinking that just leave those bunch of talented tennis players in peace and let them and their fans just enjoy tennis.What do you say?


jane Says:

Congrats to Argentina.

So they host the final right? I wonder what surface they’ll choose? Should be a tight final.


Von Says:

gulu:
Thank you for your kindness. I appreciate it. :P

I’m glad to know that you liked Pistol Pete also. In my books, he was the very best. Initially, I didn’t much care for Federer, due to some of his statements and actions and I at times, expressed my thoughts on what I didn’t like, but after seeing him suffer so much this year, I really wanted him to win the USO. I won’t lie, I would have liked Roddick to win by all means, but I didn’t hold much hope for him coming into the USO with his back problems and just turning it on. Hence, my choice was Fed and I was actually rooting for the guy, which even surprised me. I thought Fed got a bum rap at Wimby with the fading light. If one player can’t see the ball, then the AELTC should have postponed the match, simple as that. His winning the USO sort of put things on an even footing, a kind of poetic justice.

With respect to John McEnRoe and the media. All I can say is I utterly dislike Johnny Mc. He was extremely cruel to Pete during those 2 years of Pete’s drought. JMc would get on air and ridicule Pete in the worst way. I used to watch Pete’s matches with the sound turned off, that’s how bad it was. McEnroe is equally as cruel to Roddick and it angers me that when Roddick was No. 3 up until June ’07, he was not shown any respect. only the top 2 were considered worthwhile. Then Djokovic came along and now it’s the top 3, and 4, and 5, and 6, etc. Djoko earned his No. 3 position, but Roddick equally did so, but never earned the respect of the American public and media. You should read some of the articles written on this site to see how badly Roddick is treated. The present thread is an abomination to the American DC team. It irks me when people say the American media gives Roddick a free pass for his behavior, whatever that is. What irks me even more are those who live here, suck off this country and criticize our athletes. I won’t go into too much of that, but as you post and read more you’ll be able to discern the hypocrisy, politicking, game playing, lies and deception. After reading, you can draw your own conclusions, but a word of warning be discerning, please.

I agree with you about Safin — he’s one who could give Fed a headache and has done so in the past. I feel for Safin that his injuries have sidelined him so much on hardcourt. His best surfaces will be clay and grass, henceforth. I absolutely dislike clay, and am totally disinterested in who’s great on it or what. I love grass and hardcourt, to me it’s so much more fun than the dirt.

I’d also love to see Andy Murray and Nalbandian win a slam some day. I’m one for sharing the wealth and don’t like total domination by any one player. I live by the philsophy of ‘live and let others live’. I believe this world is big enough for each person to find his/her niche in life and enough kudos to go around. I’d love to see the GS drought end for Britain and Australia. I was born English, but lived in the US from age 19. I’ve spent my entire adult life in this country and love it as my mother country, however, I’m partial to anything British, which includes, Great Britain, Australia, Canada, and what was once a Br. Crown Colony, British Guiana, where I lived for 2 years.

I’m very proud of Sam Querrey — he’s the future of American tennis. The kid’s not afraid of Nadal and will give Nadal a good walloping, some time in the future. I hope sooner than later.

gulu, thanks once again for being so kind. Today was awful for me. Between the US and Gr. Britain losing, it was a double whammy, but I have hope and I know next year the US will come back strong again. Unfortunately, Gr. Britain will have to wait until 2010, but those guys are young and they can do it. I also believe in my heart that Roddick’s career is not over and he’ll be back in form soon, regardless of the stupid criticisms.

As far as continuing to post regularly, I suppose I’ll be around, because there’s some gold among the dross here — you’re in the gold bunch. :P I just need to disassociate myself more from the dross, which I’m making a conscientious effort of doing. Be good, if not be careful. :)

PS: Forgive any typos or spelling errors you might see. Believe it or not, I’m an excellent speller, but this is a blog and I don’t have to impress anyone. It’s not like I’m writing a term paper.


grendel Says:

Zola: surprised to hear about Australia. I lived there for a few years once – rather a long time ago, though. Sports mad nation if ever I saw one. I recall going to the Sydney cricket ground to watch England in the process of thrashing Australia. Very sweet, I can tell you, since England rarely beats Australia at anything. Even bloody Hewitt nearly always used beat Henman – i was always convinced this had more to do with the sort of hoodoo Australians held over the British rather than the relative merits of the two players. Two and a half years ago, Henman appeared to be beating Hewitt, and then suffered what he regarded as a series of outrageous line calls – he barely acknowledged Hewitt at the end of the match; this was MOST unlike Henman. It was that Aussie/Brit thing, you see. Back to when England was piling on the runs at the Sydney cricket ground, I was working in a biscuit factory at the time. Those were the days, if you didn’t get on with the foreman, you could shove off to a factory down the road and get a job there. All the factories are in China now. Anyway, back to the biscuit factory. I was sitting next to this fellow at tea break, having a cup of tea, munching a biscuit, and relating how the English batsmen were tearing the Aussie bowlers apart. This chap next to me stirred a little, and then started to speak; “I wish, ” he said slowly, “that we were at war with England. And then I’d kill as many Englishmen as I possibly could”. This chap made a profound impression on me, and ever since, I’ve been rather sceptical about the alleged bridge building aspects of sport. Mind you, it might just have been me getting up his wick.

Jane, what on earth has “music, fashion, literature,history” got to do with it. I was talking about why tennis sucks in Britain and why I think it will continue to do so. Your instancing Murray as an apparent spanner in the works of good old cause and effect doesn’t work, in my view. Because a)a single star never proves anything either way, it can just be luck, sheer blind luck. A great player can emerge anywhere, regardless of his background. Look at Federer. Where did he come from? And Becker.(plenty of Germans now – not then). But if you have a few pretty good players – top 50 say – then clearly your tennis association is doing something right. And perhaps there are decent tennis courts dotted across the land. But b) Murray is not a product of English tennis; he learnt his tennis in Scotland – unlike his brother, he deliberately avoided England, always was a canny bugger – and Spain.

I wouldn’t say Britain has a two man team, not unless Andy decides to play doubles with his brother, or rather John Lloyd picks him. There is a reason for not picking Andy – we saw that when Nalbandian got beaten by Davydenko today. Jamie Murray and A.N.Other is just not good enough.


FoT Says:

This is for Jane: “Go Wawrinka!”… JMDP can make the final 8 but why at the expense of Wawrinka!!!! I like Stan and I hope he can pick up some more points to finish in the top 8 too!


jane Says:

Grendel,

I thought your discussion of the hoodlums was a broad attack of the state of things overall. Sorry if I misunderstood you. I was just saying, from here, things do not look so bad. You’ve got this great country, with so much to offer, now you’ve got Murray, who’ll probably win a slam next year. Sure, he’s from Scotland, but he’s embracing Great Britain playing for you all in the Olympics and now DC. So maybe he’ll inspire some younger players. Don’t you have a few of those in the oven too? In women’s you do; one of yours won Wimbledon juniors this year dint she?

——–

FoT – sorry about the Stan comment; I like his play on clay, but overall I just prefer JMDP. Frankly I’d keep Stan over Davydenko, who I am tired of. But these are just personal prefs. No offense meant.


Jimbojones Says:

Sampras beat Courier and tears at the Australian Open in 1995 in the quarterfinals not the finals. 1994 he clobbered Courier in the semifinals.


grendel Says:

Even so, I haven’t done justice to Jane, on reflection. It is true, cause and effect are difficult to pinpoint, outside simple mechanical proceedures – and even here, well that’s another matter…..

But I suppose I was just giving an impressionistic view, partly bolstered by some irritating experiences. Of course, there are all kinds of reason why England is so poor at tennis, and always has been really. I can suggest a few. 1) In Britain, especially England, tennis has always been class bound – it used to be largely the preserve of the rich, and gradually has filtered down to the middle classes, whatever exactly they are. That tint of the privileged, though, still endures, I suspect, in the public imagination. That said, tennis is now sort of acceptable to working class people (whoever they are; no factories anymore), but very much as a minority sport, and still faintly – difficult to pin down, not exactly comical, but not quite “manly” or something. Black people have found sport a passport out of the ghetto, but it is to football they turn, or boxing or athletics but rarely tennis. Some sort of indefineable prejudice lingers, no white person would dream of admitting it these days, but it’s there alright, and there’s a corresponding suspicion, I suspect, among blacks. Considering the huge contribution that blacks make to such success as Britain has in the major sports (don’t be mislead by all those gold medals), this must be a significant factor in British tennis mediocrity.

And then there is the weather. It just isn’t conducive to sustained practice – doesn’t affect the sports mentioned above, or at least not so drastically. So despite a dense population, we actually have rather few people playing tennis in this country – even if you consider the clubs, I understand the ratio of players to general population is much, much lower than in France and Spain – countries which are so successful. And small but wealthy countries like Sweden spend, I gather, huge sums of money on indoor courts; considering Sweden’s tiny population, this has clearly borne fruit.

The “Serbia” factor is a function of being a small country which perceives itself as having been victimised. By a sheer statistical blip, I suspect, Serbia suddenly come up with 4 super stars. Instantly the country becomes tennis mad. Tennis courts spring up all over the place. Well, that had better work, there had better be some successors to Djokovic and co, or else you’d think there’s going to be a lot of tennis courts sprouting cracks and weeds. This kind of instant popularity doesn’t seem convincing to me, and may just turn out to be an historical peculiarity.

But Britons, although they pretend not to, think rather highly of themselves, and are not on the whole too bothered by failure, even affect to see it as something of a virtue. So they are not going to go out of their way to clamour for tennis success. Henman heroically failing seems to touch a national chord. Murray winning grand slams might elicit a certain degree of disapproval, – but then the fellow is, after all, a Scot.

So indeed, there are many reasons for failure. People, and that includes me, always want to have their cake and eat it. So it would be nice to be able to vicariously bask in the success of one’s compatriots. But I suspect that we British know, deep in our hearts, that there is a certain price to be paid for success, sometimes associated with a sort of regimented bullying and – deep down – we are not willing to pay that price. So we moan ands groan and berate the powers that be for their miserable incompetence – but at the same time are quietly complacent.

Must be infuriating…


jane Says:

Don’t worry about justice grendel; maybe I was wrong to accuse you of cynicism. I don’t live there after all. In any case, I am fascinated by your take on the state of tennis in Britain, the wherefores and whatnots as to why it’s never been quite the success it could or maybe should, given the dollar expenditure, be. I am amazed your analysis covers everything from weather, to social class, through race, all the way to national character.

I could not hope to offer such a comprehensive explanation for why Canada has virtually no tennis to speak of: okay, we have Wozinak and Dancevic, who we can always hope might get to quarters of our ONE MS event. And we do have Golden Slam Nestor. BUT.

I think weather plays a role here, too, and the fact that tennis is still perceived of by many as rather genteel; as in Britain, it has that “class” specter attached to it, which is rather ironic since it’s one of the less expensive sports in which to participate – less expensive than snowboarding or hockey. Of course, hockey supersedes most every other sport here. Maybe tennis is not “macho” enough, even though it requires as much athleticism, or more, as does chasing a puck around, on ice, with 10 other guys.

I do wish we had more going on nationally in the way of tennis. I always cringe when people complain that no one from their own nation has won “their slam” lately. We’re lucky to have a Masters event, let alone a Canadian ever winning the thing!

So, all things considered, having Murray, Wimbledon, Queens, and a grass court tradition that basically BEGOT the sport we all love so much, your not SO bad off in Britain. Complacent perhaps, but not so bad off.


Von Says:

Jimbojonwes;

Just goes to say how much one knows n’est ce pas?


Von Says:

Giner:

“But realistically, for Roddick to beat a guy like Ferrer on clay, he’s not only going to have to play great; Ferrer has to not play great, because if both played their best he won’t be winning.”

Remember this, and remember it well, had it not been for the bloody, disorderly crowd, Roddick would have WON. He had Ferrer on the ROPES. Ferrer was lucky to pull out that win, and that’s my opinion. RODDICK IS BETTER THAN FERRER, ANY DAY, ANY TIME, AND HE’S GOT THE HARDWARE TO PROVE IT. What good is it if you’re just good on one surface for tennis. then I suppose the whole bloody game should be played on just ONE surface. Please give me break.

For me, the best, most gracious, electrifying clay courter, was, is and always will be GUSTAVO KUERTEN. The guy had style, grace, and class. no mish mash shots and running people around playing war of attrition from the back of the court. He won it with effortless, stylish strokes, with class and a smile to boot. Also, he could dish it out on hardcourt, at the USO. It was a sad day for clay tennis when he couldn’t play anymore due to his injuries.

That’s my opinion and I’m entitled to it, right?


Jojo Says:

Von:

I think your opinion is funny!

That’s my opinion and I’m entitled to it, right?


People in the Mental Ward Says:

Von: We also agree with you that Roddick is a much better player than Ferrer. It’s also worthwhile to point out that Ferrer’s 4-2 head to head record over Roddick is grossly misleading, too.

David’s three wins over Andy on hardcourts were really played on clay, a fact that was irrefutably obvious to us and to anyone who was in the stands or views those matches on the tele at the Masters Cup, Cincinnati and Miami. All hardcourt surfaces are really clay since sand & dirt makes up the ingredients that go into hardcourt surface.


People in the Mental Ward Says:

P.S. Von: Many of us miss your wit and banter in here. We look forward to your return.


Von Says:

“All hardcourt surfaces are really clay since sand & dirt makes up the ingredients that go into hardcourt surface.”

Don’t forget they put an icing on the top of the court to make it more scrumptious for sliding as on the red dirt. That’s why the claycourters slide on it all of the time. My knees, oh my aching knees.

P.S. Von: Many of us miss your wit and banter in here. We look forward to your return.

No kidding!


Von Says:

Hey that mental ward is true, the link says, diagnose mental problem.


Von Says:

NOW HEAR THIS!! BREAKING NEWS — THE US WON THE RYDER CUP TODAY!! WHOOP DE DOO!!

This is what it means to be a citizen of a great country — YA JUST CAN’T KEEP US DOWN.

The INCUMBENT US Davis Cup Team lost thir SF tie, but they’re still the reigning champions until the last ball is hit in the finals and the new champiosn will emerge — The Argentines. Go Nalby AND CO. — MY MONEY’S ON YOU GUYS.


Glenn Says:

Roddick got his butt properly kicked! It was even more humiliating for him, I’m sure, because he’s often touted as the “get-go” guy for the team when the chips are down.

Roddick was gracious. Can’t say the same for his #1 fan here though.

Vulcan, my hats off to you for not making the Roddick fan eat her words, like she wanted you to do.

Zola, good for you for just avoiding the hate.

I’m watching my prerecorded matches right now. I wonder how true Von’s words are that the crowd was being too rowdy for Roddick (the Nadal-Querrey match is just finishing). I remember a Federation Cup match between Russia and Israel, with Israel as host. The Israeli’s were really obnoxious towards Chakvedatze, and she gave as good as she got and won HER match. Mmmmm. What does that say about Roddick? If it’s true the crowd was rowdy, Roddick needs to take a lesson in mental self-control. Not champion material at all. Safina got things under control, which is why she is champion material now.

I’m positive there are Americans that can represent America better than Roddick. Querry is a good candidate.


zola Says:

well, well, well,….
JMDP delivered!congratulations Argentina.
It will be a very hard final for Spain. I am curious to see what surface they will chose.

Vulcan
that’s so true about the free courts. It is something I miss a lot when I go other places. But of course there are things they have for free and we don’t!

gulu,
For years following Rafa, I saw him being raised to “Godhood” during the clay season and then dropped to the ground and lower during the hard court season. I wrote somthing earlier this year about Fed, Rafa, Djoko and the media treatment in another forum. I will post it here for you if I can find it. You can sense it during a match too. When the guy is winning he gets all the praises. When he is losing, they find all sorts of mistakes with his game, etc., the best is to ignore!

you said:
***.I started wondering whether I should celebrate the win of my favourite player or not?***
It was a mixed emotion for me and for many RAfa fans. Sure, we wanted Rafa to win but seeing Fed saying “it hurts” to JMac was not easy at all.

I also agree with you that expecting Fed to win FO this year was not realistic. He wasn’t in his best and Rafa won him in FO at his best ( 2005-2007). But as a Fed fan you should be very proud of him. Even Sampras or Borg had to pass the torch to other players. Fed has set such high standards that everyone will be compared to him from now on. He is on his way to equal Sampras’s record and go beyond. If I was him, I would concentrate on winning more slams. He has broken every other record.


zola Says:

Grendel
That’s right that the Aussies love the sports. What they do a lot is that they have cheap sports education for their youth. kids could learn how to swim from pros for $20 something a week ( an hour every day)for the two weeks of school breaks.
I met a guy similar to the one you described who was determined to “kill” anyone who invaded Australia! He was really nice at heart but couldn’t find the right words to describe his thoughts!

One thing I notice about England is that there are not many up and coming players. It is Murray and then Bogdanovic. Such a gap betwen them. Same for Australia. Although they have this youngster ( Tomic?). Still, I expect to see more. In contrast look at France or Spain or even USA. About Serbia, tennis is not a new sport. they had Seles.

FoT
congratulations on Federeinka’s win. I didnt watch the matches. Did they do “the ritual” at the end of their doubles match?

Glenn
The crowd behaved well. I can say they were not worse than the US Open crowd. The only incident was a shout at the end of Roddick-Ferrer match. But it is Davis cup as PMac said himself. Good for Roddick for keeping his cool during the match. The commentators said he talked to Ramos after the match. If you watch today’s match with Rafa, during the third set, somewhere Roddick held his hands up to the crowd asking for support and they started clapping and chanting Roooddddiiick Roooodddick for him. He was all smiles today. I would like to read their press conferences.

I think he did his best. Rafa was too good today and Ferrer was pumped up by the crowd. As Roddick said himself, he is not a clay court player. Still, he was there and that should be appreciated. But Querrery and Fish were good additions to the team. I guess querrey will be a constant from now on.

***good for you for just avoiding the hate.***

thanks! the magic button is “scroll down”….
Hate is a destructive feeling, mostly to the person bearing it and it is on full display here!


Glenn Says:

Zola,

Just finished the Ferrer-Roddick match. There was so much discrepancy between what actually occurred and what Von stated.

The crowd was very fair. At 6-6 there was a shout from the crowd on Roddick’s serve and the crowd reacted strongly to the bad manners (as did the ump). There was also a shout from the crowd at 4-3 in the fifth set on Ferrer’s serve which made Ferrer pause. There were some long rallies, and during the times when Roddick won the point, the crowd cheered just as loud as when Ferrer won.

Apparently, Von thinks the Ump didn’t do his job. Maybe she doesn’t know Spanish. If that’s the case, a translation is in order. “SILENCIO, POR FAVOR” means “silence, please.” The Ump said it so often (and the crowd obeyed 99.9% of the time), I don’t know how Von could have missed it.

Ferrer was obviously the better player in the final set (even if only slightly better). He served three love games to Roddick’s one. Even the commentators affirmed that Ferrer raised the level of his SERVE in the fifth set (getting 2 or 3 aces in the fifth set out of a total of 9 in all five sets).

Roddick didn’t seem bothered by the crowd at all (to his credit). So it wasn’t the crowd. Ferrer was simply a little better.

The sportsmanship was great throughout.

It must be the hate. It can really cloud perception.

Fish was surprisingly good in the doubles. Querrey is great, but needs to work on his fitness.

Yeah, I noticed the Roddick-crowd interaction. It was funny. I even noticed that Roddick and Rafa exchanged smiles after that game.

BTW, good to know you.


Von Says:

Glenn Says:
Von, I think you are pretty consistent. You seem to have a certain standard regarding on-court etiquette from players and have simply applied that rather consistently to all the players no matter who your favorite is. I respect that.

I like the comment someone made about Federer not quitting after someone made a bad comment about his girlfriend.

When it comes right down to it, no matter what excuse someone makes for Djokovic quitting (upset about his parents, upset about possibly losing, getting his fat ego get the better of him), the fact is that he quit. Though I don’t respect Djokovic, I DO respect his game, and he was not playing badly at all. It does seem rather emotional and psychosomatic with him. But then the fact that he cannot contain his emotions means that he is not champion material – simple as that.

Posted April 27th, 2008 at 1:21

Von Says:
SG:

“Problem is, to hit winners on clay, you have to be really on. And it’s hard to keep this up mentally for 3 sets let alone 5. For this reason, Fed usually ends up with a lot of UE’s. he has to force the action from the ground.”

I forgot to mention the mental factor, Nadal v. Fed. Nadal, until he has personal problems, will always be the more focused and fresher than many more players, e.g., Fed, who is caught up into the ‘extraneous factors’ web. Nadal is not putting unnecessary stress on himself to rewrite history and break records. Nadal’s just contented to play his tennis, and win. I’ve never once heard him speak of breaking records. A very smart mindset for one so young. Hence, he’ll always be the more focused and fresher in mind of the two, and a healthy mind = a healthy body. A very great winning combination.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 8:26 pm

Zola Says:
Von

Great point about Nadal. Great observation. I have never seen anyone point it out but I think it is absolutely true:
***Nadal’s just contented to play his tennis, and win. I’ve never once heard him speak of breaking records. A very smart mindset for one so young. Hence, he’ll always be the more focused and fresher in mind of the two, and a healthy mind = a healthy body. A very great winning combination.****

RAfa focuses on the moment. They ask him about the final, he always says, I tell you if I win the semis and I am here. He doesn’t brag and doesn’t create expectations. It is just great for a person this young.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:16 pm

Glenn Says:
Zola,
Great comment!

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:56 pm

Von Says:
Zola:

“Von. Great point about Nadal. Great observation. I have never seen anyone point it out but I think it is absolutely true.”

Well, there are some who won’t agree with you about my comments being great, viz., they feel I’m crazy and/or need a psychiatrist, so how about if we just put this one great point down to one of my more saner moments — shades of sanity, perhaps? But, yes, Rafa, is smart and contended, and that comes from a sound and stable family environment. He’s an achiever, but not an over-achiever, and that’s the healthiest mindset one can have. The little guy has got the smarts and game to excel, and the records will come. He has broken the MC record already. There’s nothing worse than looking ahead and fantasizing, one step at a time, but in his case, one match at a time. Enjoy your guy’s tennis.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:57 pm

Zola Says:
Von,
there will always be people who will disagree with you. Some will call names etc. Just ignore them. Evryone is entitled to his/her opinion. I don’t even read many of those!

I think you are very passionate about what you believe. Some people don’t like it!

Twocents,
correct that Fed shoulders lots of expectations, but come clay season, Rafa takes the heat. It comes with the territory and the way they both have handles this year after year, is just phenomenal.

I also admire the fact that at 27, Federer is still motivated and wants to win more slams and break more records. As I said before, these are two very special players. I want to watch each and every match of them both. We may not see another Federer or Nadal for a very very long time.

Posted April 29th, 2008 at 3:11 am

Zola and Glenn;

The above are your posts to me. Isn’t it amazing that hate for a player can turn people into liars. When i was lauding praises on Nadal, zola was purring like a cat and i was the best thing on two feet. i did all of the praise lauding DESPITE the many, many, times, she has ripped Roddick to threads.During all of her many distasteful remarks towardroddick, i never argued with her, nor did i stop praising nadal. however, in June at the toronto tournament when she again started for the umpteenth time with her criticisms of Roddick and I answered, I became hateful.

Glenn:

Read your posts to me. you are truly something else, butIi’ll forgive you becauseIi know you’re bi-polar and you vacillate.Yyou also had a deep hate for Djokovic and jane. We took the brunt of your many mood swings. BecauseIi’m familiar with the workings of the human mind,Ii can only state, thatIi truly have a deep sympathy for both of you. Zola, even thoughIi don’t want to say this, you absolutely need some psychiatric help — you are just plain wicked.

My deepest sympathy for both of you. Intelligent people and those who’ve posted here for quite some time, know what you are like, Zola, and the threads bear out my words. you can’t take a smidgen of what you ladel out. You are cantankerous and crafty whereby you transpose your behavior onto someone else. Posting on these and several threads is your life’s work. Fortunately, I have a profession and my world is a lot larger than yours. Again, you have my sympathy. Don’t even lie that you use the scroll button, you read every word.

Glenn: You’ve teamed up ith the right person — you both share deep hatred for Rroddick and Djokovic. I truly wonder what would make people hate and lie this much over such trivial things as a blog. who are you trying to impress — faceless and nameless people?

I will post a thread about Djokovic where you and Glenn had a field day criticizig the guy. Aside from the hate you have for other players, save Nadal,


Von Says:

Glenn Says:
Von, I think you are pretty consistent. You seem to have a certain standard regarding on-court etiquette from players and have simply applied that rather consistently to all the players no matter who your favorite is. I respect that.

I like the comment someone made about Federer not quitting after someone made a bad comment about his girlfriend.

When it comes right down to it, no matter what excuse someone makes for Djokovic quitting (upset about his parents, upset about possibly losing, getting his fat ego get the better of him), the fact is that he quit. Though I don’t respect Djokovic, I DO respect his game, and he was not playing badly at all. It does seem rather emotional and psychosomatic with him. But then the fact that he cannot contain his emotions means that he is not champion material – simple as that.

Posted April 27th, 2008 at 1:21

Von Says:
SG:

“Problem is, to hit winners on clay, you have to be really on. And it’s hard to keep this up mentally for 3 sets let alone 5. For this reason, Fed usually ends up with a lot of UE’s. he has to force the action from the ground.”

I forgot to mention the mental factor, Nadal v. Fed. Nadal, until he has personal problems, will always be the more focused and fresher than many more players, e.g., Fed, who is caught up into the ‘extraneous factors’ web. Nadal is not putting unnecessary stress on himself to rewrite history and break records. Nadal’s just contented to play his tennis, and win. I’ve never once heard him speak of breaking records. A very smart mindset for one so young. Hence, he’ll always be the more focused and fresher in mind of the two, and a healthy mind = a healthy body. A very great winning combination.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 8:26 pm

Zola Says:
Von

Great point about Nadal. Great observation. I have never seen anyone point it out but I think it is absolutely true:
***Nadal’s just contented to play his tennis, and win. I’ve never once heard him speak of breaking records. A very smart mindset for one so young. Hence, he’ll always be the more focused and fresher in mind of the two, and a healthy mind = a healthy body. A very great winning combination.****

RAfa focuses on the moment. They ask him about the final, he always says, I tell you if I win the semis and I am here. He doesn’t brag and doesn’t create expectations. It is just great for a person this young.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:16 pm

Glenn Says:
Zola,
Great comment!

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:56 pm

Von Says:
Zola:

“Von. Great point about Nadal. Great observation. I have never seen anyone point it out but I think it is absolutely true.”

Well, there are some who won’t agree with you about my comments being great, viz., they feel I’m crazy and/or need a psychiatrist, so how about if we just put this one great point down to one of my more saner moments — shades of sanity, perhaps? But, yes, Rafa, is smart and contended, and that comes from a sound and stable family environment. He’s an achiever, but not an over-achiever, and that’s the healthiest mindset one can have. The little guy has got the smarts and game to excel, and the records will come. He has broken the MC record already. There’s nothing worse than looking ahead and fantasizing, one step at a time, but in his case, one match at a time. Enjoy your guy’s tennis.

Posted April 28th, 2008 at 10:57 pm

Zola Says:
Von,
there will always be people who will disagree with you. Some will call names etc. Just ignore them. Evryone is entitled to his/her opinion. I don’t even read many of those!

I think you are very passionate about what you believe. Some people don’t like it!

Twocents,
correct that Fed shoulders lots of expectations, but come clay season, Rafa takes the heat. It comes with the territory and the way they both have handles this year after year, is just phenomenal.

I also admire the fact that at 27, Federer is still motivated and wants to win more slams and break more records. As I said before, these are two very special players. I want to watch each and every match of them both. We may not see another Federer or Nadal for a very very long time.

Posted April 29th, 2008 at 3:11 am

Zola and Glenn;

The above are your posts to me. Isn’t it amazing that hate for a player can turn people into liars. When i was lauding praises on Nadal, zola was purring like a cat and i was the best thing on two feet. i did all of the praise lauding DESPITE the many, many, times, she has ripped Roddick to threads.During all of her many distasteful remarks towardroddick, i never argued with her, nor did i stop praising nadal. however, in June at the toronto tournament when she again started for the umpteenth time with her criticisms of Roddick and I answered, I became hateful.

Glenn:

Read your posts to me. you are truly something else, butIi’ll forgive you becauseIi know you’re bi-polar and you vacillate.Yyou also had a deep hate for Djokovic and jane. We took the brunt of your many mood swings. BecauseIi’m familiar with the workings of the human mind,Ii can only state, thatIi truly have a deep sympathy for both of you. Zola, even thoughIi don’t want to say this, you absolutely need some psychiatric help — you are just plain wicked.

My deepest sympathy for both of you. Intelligent people and those who’ve posted here for quite some time, know what you are like, Zola, and the threads bear out my words. you can’t take a smidgen of what you ladel out. You are cantankerous and crafty whereby you transpose your behavior onto someone else. Posting on these and several threads is your life’s work. Fortunately, I have a profession and my world is a lot larger than yours. Again, you have my sympathy. Don’t even lie that you use the scroll button, you read every word.

Glenn: You’ve teamed up ith the right person — you both share deep hatred for Rroddick and Djokovic. I truly wonder what would make people hate and lie this much over such trivial things as a blog. who are you trying to impress — faceless and nameless people?

I will post a thread about Djokovic where you and Glenn had a field day criticizig the guy. Aside from the hate you have for other players, save Nadal,

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2008-04-26/436.php

Enjoy the reading — on that thread ola and glenn, just count the many times you’ve mentioned the same thing, just changing around the words. is there no decency in either of you? I can excuse Vulcan, because he’s not aware of who and what he’s dealing with.


Von Says:

Glenn:

Just to show you how off the wall you are, you’ve posted to Zola before and in your post of 9/22/08 at 3.44 a.m. you told her “BTW, glad to know you’. you are both facacked. You’ve posted to each other before when you were both tearing Djoko to shreds and you don’t even remember. there are several threads where Glenn has been abslutely disgusting to myself and jane. When time permits i’l find those threads and post them. in the meantime Zola, here’s one where you shredded Roddick and yet i was big enough to laud praises on your MAN.

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2008-02-22/382.php

I don’t relish going to these lengths to prove anything because i’m not a liar, but when one is dealing with liars, the only thing that bears out the truth is hard evidence. It’s all there for you to read and reacquaint yourself. And, Zola, this will show you are lying, re your comment in your post “My huge sin was to say that Roddick’s attitude towards umpires is becoming irritating ( after he did something in summer). She raised hell after that and now she can’t let go.”

From the threads is was NOT summer, we’re in summer now, it was wwaaaay long befor the summer and too many, many times. Let’s see what lie you’ll come up with both you and glen to get your asses out of the lies. I absolutely abhor liars and i’m angry at myself that i have to waste so much time proving your lies, but the end result is worth it. Now go bury your heads in shame.

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2007-11-24/335.php


Lenny Says:

Von says:
“It was a very lack luster match, and Roddick just let Nadal hit the balls.”

Hang on, there. Were you watching the same match I was???? Roddick was not lacklustre – he was just made to look that way by an utterly brilliant, sublime Nadal.

As your man HIMSELF said: “He’s possibly the best clay-courter ever so it’s tough, especially when he hits like he did today. He was going for his shots and not leaving much short.”

And as Nadal said: “Today I play an almost perfect match and it is very, very exciting. …I shocked myself with some of the winners I played, was near perfect tennis.”

And we ALL know how humble Rafa is, for him to make a statement like that, well, it’s just plain fact.

And you say, he DIDN’T hit any great winners???? Ummm, he hit 60 winners in a 3-set match with just 26 games! And a LOT of the ones I saw were vintage Nadal brilliance.

Yes, your man lost, but it’s unfair and uncharitible to say it was because HE played badly – unfair to BOTH, Roddick AND Rafa.


Von Says:

And, Glenn, you mentioned to Zola today, “BTW, glad to know you.” funny, you knew her back in april when you were both criticizing Djokovic and Roddick. A liar need to have a good memory, try to remember that.

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2008-02-22/382.php


Von Says:

Lenny, sorry I didn’t see it your way. What I saw was a Roddick who didn’t seem interested in playing, and that for me was lackluster. Maybe, I should have qualified my statement by saying it was lackluster on Roddick’s part. Nadal did play a lot better than Roddick, but as I’ve stated, it seemed to me that Roddick just didn’t care one way or the other. It was as though he was resigned to the fact that the US was in a hole and there wasn’t any way to dig themselves out of it — it was a tough ask.


Von Says:

Lenny:

This is what I said.

“It was a very lack luster match, and Roddick just let Nadal hit the balls. There wasn’t anything spectacular that I saw from Nadal’s performance either; the same running to get the balls, but not any fantastic WOW shots, like hitting all the angles, painting the lines. I suppose Andy figured what the hell let him get the balls — if he wants it, go get them.”

“And you say, he DIDN’T hit any great winners???? Ummm, he hit 60 winners in a 3-set match with just 26 games! And a LOT of the ones I saw were vintage Nadal brilliance.”

I didn’t mention anything about winners. I said their weren’t any great WOW shots, painting the lines and hitting angles. Please read my post again.

You’ve got to understand everyone perceives shotmaking differently. What might appear to you as brilliant, might just be ordinary to another person. It’s all a matter of perception and how we assess things. I could have said Roddick played brilliantly, but that wasn’t true. he played like he didn’t care, hence a lack-luster match to me.


gulu Says:

My dear Von,I was a little bit busy with my work.But now I m free again and am writing to you.I absolutely agree with you that Roddick still has much to offer to all the tennis lovers.He has at least five years of good tennis left and I m sure that he will continue to play well and win the tournaments.May he win another grand slam!Roddick is still young,he’s 25.I don’t think that he has a bad head-to-head record against his strong opponents either.He has nothing to be too worried about and the only thing he needs to do is to work hard and stay focussed,success will automatically come to him.Send your next post to me soon.Waitin 4 ur response.


Von Says:

gulu;

Thanks for the reply. I’ve been very busy preparing for a case and in between I have been posting too. After my post to you, I fell asleep for 5 hours, and then posted 2 quick posts. I’ve been working on some pre-trial exhibits and just taking breaks in between to get my mind off my work. Posting takes me far away from work and can be fun at times, excpet tonight it wasn’t so. I’m angry with myself for wasting time to dig up facts to prove a point.Tit was so very stupid and wish I had a delete button to remove the posts. Unfortunately, i’ll probably get slaughtered my from stupid momemnt of anger.

It seems that we both work at nights. I was able to negotiate a good deal from work where I don’t have to go in everyday, as long as I keep my case-load up-to-date and submit my docs to the court on time. I’m hooked up to the work computer line and it’s been good. But, they get more hours out of me than a normal 9-5 day. Anyway, it’s fun not having to face the traffic everyday — only 3 times per week I go to the office. That’s good don’t you think?

As for Roddick, if he remains healthy, he can still play until about 31 or 32. However, his shoulder/back problems are suspect. My reason for being on the work schdule I’m now on, is due to an arm injury sustained at work, which caused me to have 2 surgeries, and still my arm is not much better. This is why I have great empathy for people who have arm/shoulder problems — it’s a very bad and painful injury.

Roddick’s only bad H2H is against Federer and that was an unfortunate scenario, because no matter where he was seeded in a tournament, he always seemed to land on Fed’s side of the draw. I often wonder how could that be, and I know I’m thought of as crazy, but I sometimes feel the draws are manipulated. Realistically, how could one player be placed in another’s side of the draw 17 times. Doesn’t there seem to be a problem? Laugh if you want, but I’m non-plussed and can’t figure it out. The people on these threads already think I’m crazy, so this will re-affirm to them that I am. :P

Yes, Andy doesn’t have anything to worry about, but he’s got to put in the work if he absolutely wants to get up higher in the rankings and be more successful. I personally feel, Andy is somewhat disillusioned by his GS results. Had he not met Fed in the QFs, SFs, and finals, he could easily have won about 5 more slams, and I think this is where the disillusionment has become a factor. But, only time will tell.

Enough of Andy though, where do you see Fed’s career heading? The USO certainly bolstered his spirits and no doubt the TMC will, if he wins it again, but after that where do you see him headed? I believe the competition from the young guys will be a huge factor on his upward mobility. What do you think?

Ok, gulu, that’s it for me, and I’ll talk to you some more later today, or whenever you have the time to post again. Except for a few small tournaments, nothing much is happening in the tennis world until Madrid and Paris. Just six (6) more weeks to go and the season will be over — unbelievable, isn’t it?.

Bye and be good, if not — be careful. Here’s a smile to brighten up your day and for being so nice to me.


Von Says:

gulu: OOPS, I forgot the smile. here it is; :P


gulu Says:

Von, I m sure that Fed’s a man who’ll not give up easily .Everyone accepts that Fed’s stylish and graceful,but ‘dangerous’ would be an apt word to describe him while he’s on court.His future isn’t fully unsafe even
thou no. of challengers is more


zola Says:

Glenn,

good to know you too.

I thought the Spanish crowd was very fair too. They cheered both sides and apart from those two incidents that you mentined, everything was fine and pleasant. The crowd at US Open (eg Djoko-Roddick match) or French Open can be very partisan at times and even that is regarded as normal!

Roddick played very well against Ferrer. Ferrer dropped his level in the second and third sets and I don’t know why. Maybe he lost focus. But he got it back together in the 4th and 5th.

Querrey is very laid back and relaxed. Yet he plays very agressively on court. His serve, forehand and backhand were all working for him against Rafa. ( I haven’t watched his match with Feli yet. just watched parts of it). I think he will be a permanent perhaps replacing Blake. But I am not sure who else PMac can add to the team.

btw,
I just read that PMAc-Roddick partnership is over. no news yet on who Roddick’s new coach will be.

Also that Argentina is picking a fast indoor surface for the final. That’s what I thought. They wouldn’t want RAfa on clay!


Vulcan Says:

Zola, thanks for the update on Argentina and their court selection…I guess the only question that remains is just how fast of a surface will they go with. I remember when Croatia played USA several years ago they used a lightning fast indoor court to help Ljubicic…I mean it must of been a waxed wood floor or something (slight exaggeration) because it was ridiculously fast.
I wonder who Spain will elect to play. The main question is will they replace Ferrer with Lopez.
Even though Lopez has won on a fast indoor court in Vienna I’m not really sure hes the guy to get the job done.


Vulcan Says:

Regarding the court speed, and I’ve brought this up before. The ITF has a “surface pace rating” system that they use to measure the court’s speed.
Unfortunately I have not been able to find the actual ratings anywhere on internet. It sure would be interesting to see what they are for the various events…especially with all of the hypberbole that surrounds court speed. I did find one site that ranks the court speeds according to the length of matches but this would not seem to take into account the various playing styles of different players.


gulu Says:

Hi zola! It’s so good to know that you felt sad to see my dear Roger unhappy after his loss at Wimbledon 2008.Rogi put up the bravest fight of his life against the formidable Rafa despite the fact that many were writng and saying moral breaking stuff about him.To be honest,it was this Wimby loss of his to Rafa which made me a real and forever Fed fan.And I hav to giv full marks to Rafa for his excellent demeanour on and off the court.


zola Says:

Vulcan
I think it is “Orfeo arena in Cordoba”. Sean has put the link in his recent post.

I think it is a wise choice for Argentina. They would not go for clay ( unless they have Munoz as the president of their tennis association!). Nalby had two decisive wins over Rafa last year in Madrid and Paris and JMDP can play on fast too. The question is how “in form” each of the players will be. Rafa and perhaps Ferrer will fly from China to Argentina after the master cup. I guess JMDP will be there too. About Nalby, I am waiting to see how he will do in MAdrid and Paris this year.

All in all it will be a thriller of a final.

gulu
Thanks for acknowledging Rafa’s excellent demenour.That’s something I like a lot about him. He was the same when he won his first French open match against Federer when he was 18. I like to watch Rafa and Fed when they play each other at their best ( like Wimbledon 2008 or Shanghai 2006, Rome 2006). Then you see some phenomenal shots from both.

About Fed, I think the wimbledon match being a 5-setter and so close made the defeat even harder. Strangely the exact opposite of what happened in 2007.

Similarly, even not being a Djoko fan, it was very hard for me to see him leave the court in tears after losing in the olympics SF. or to see JMDP cry in his press conference after losing to Andy Murray.We can forget how much they invest emotionally in these matches.

I think this is a very lucky times for us fans. Now with the addition of Djoko and Murray,…( and maybe JMDP very soon!) we are in for some great matches!


Vulcan Says:

Zola, if Nalbandian plays the way he did last year the rest of the players can start their vacations early. About Shanghai, its a shame that this is the last year of the tournament there. I was there for TMC 2005 and the city makes for an exotic and fascinating host for the year end championships.


zola Says:

Vulcan
***if Nalbandian plays the way he did last year the rest of the players can start their vacations early***

don’t remind me! he was just phenomenal last year. I think for Rafa it will be a huge milestone if he can win Nalbandian. Nalby can create angels and control the ball, painting the lines. He has a great serve and a double-handed backhand. Of course I was sad the way he beat up Rafa but he played great!I think JMDP will be very dangerous too.

That’s why I wanted Russia to win!

So you were in Shanghai? Must have been a very nice experice to see all those greats in one place. The venue is beautiful with that nice roof. Is the next venue (in London?) ging to b fast indoors too? I wish they alternated the surface.( to clay for example!). :)


Vulcan Says:

Zola, Shanghai and Nalbandian are etched in my memory together because that was the year that he beat Federer in the Final (I was, and still am, a big Federer Fan). The stadium is beautiful and the Chinese fans were great about rooting exhuberantly and fairly for both players. I’m not sure what surface is being chosen for London but I agree that the surfaces for TMC should be rotated…I mean its all about the “Masters” right, and the Masters should be able to play on all of the surfaces. By the same rationale I think one of the hardcourt Masters series tournaments should be converted to Grass…I have heard some discussion of Halle being converted.
I was able to find one interesting page which has court speed classifications but it doesnt have the actual numerical ranking to distinguish among the 5 major classifications:

http://www.itftennis.com/technical/equipment/courts/courtlist.asp


Giner Says:

Von says:

“I hope [Argentina] choose a super fast court [to host Spain]”

You know, that would be amusing not to mention very ironic. I’d like to see it happen though, not that I’ll be able to see the matches.

I’d like to see Arg win a title for once. It’s been a long time coming, and they are deserving of it. They haven’t had much luck with draws and for once they are in place to win it with an opportunity to host the final. Too bad it’s Spain they are up against. Spain hosted Arg a few years back and their A team almost lost to Arg’s B team.

I’m quite surprised that in their entire history (they’ve been a strong tennis country) they have never won a DC title.

If the final is on clay, both teams are quite well matched and it will be a real contest, which I’ll look forward to. The doubles match will be key.


Giner Says:

“David’s three wins over Andy on hardcourts were really played on clay, a fact that was irrefutably obvious to us and to anyone who was in the stands or views those matches on the tele at the Masters Cup, Cincinnati and Miami. All hardcourt surfaces are really clay since sand & dirt makes up the ingredients that go into hardcourt surface.”

Erm… I don’t know if this was sarcasm or not but if hard courts are really clay courts, and Ferrer beat him on ‘clay’, then would Nadal not be the best hard court player out there?

If you want to take it a step further, 99.6% of all matter in the universe is made of Hydrogen and Helium. All of those heavier elements are really just multiple hydrogen atoms fused together ejected from dying stars going into supernova (you and everything around you are made of stardust, literally). Every surface, be it clay, grass, carpet or hard is really made up of the same atoms (Hydrogen). All surfaces are the same. Right?

Is it not more accurate to say that clay is made of crushed brick and stuff you find inside hard surfaces?


Giner Says:

“Remember this, and remember it well, had it not been for the bloody, disorderly crowd, Roddick would have WON.”

Rowdy crowd is part of the deal. He knew what he was getting himself into and that he would need to overcome it. When he plays at home, he gets the reverse treatment, so it’s all fair. Any time he plays at the US Open, or against Murray at Wimbledon, Hewitt in Australia, it’s going to be like a Davis Cup atmosphere.

“He had Ferrer on the ROPES. Ferrer was lucky to pull out that win, and that’s my opinion.”

Closing out a match is a requirement for winning it. This kind of thing happens in tennis, especially in big matches. Grasping victory while at the brink of defeat or vice versa. Mental toughness is what overcomes hostile crowds and allows you to finish off a match when it gets tight, or pull yourself back in when all seems lost.

“RODDICK IS BETTER THAN FERRER, ANY DAY, ANY TIME, AND HE’S GOT THE HARDWARE TO PROVE IT.”

Better, maybe. But that doesn’t mean he’s always going to win against him (Federer is after all, the best player except against Nadal on clay, but he still loses matches to lesser opponents). The H2H between Roddick and Ferrer reveals as much.

“What good is it if you’re just good on one surface for tennis. then I suppose the whole bloody game should be played on just ONE surface. Please give me break.”

Didn’t he make the final of some grass tournament a week before Wimbledon? And weren’t a couple of his 8 titles on hard court? He made the final of TMC Shanghai (a very fast indoor hard court) last year against the best players of the season, without dropping a match. He can surely be forgiven for losing in the final to none other than Federer. He may play best on one surface, but that doesn’t make him inept on all of the others (see Nadal).

Strong and weak surfaces is what brings diversity to the game. Some players are strong on one surface, weak on another, while other players are the reverse. How well they match up depends on what surface they meet on. It would be boring if there was only one surface, though as your friend pointed out: clay and hard court are the same surface anyway.

“For me, the best, most gracious, electrifying clay courter, was, is and always will be GUSTAVO KUERTEN. The guy had style, grace, and class. no mish mash shots and running people around playing war of attrition from the back of the court. He won it with effortless, stylish strokes, with class and a smile to boot. Also, he could dish it out on hardcourt, at the USO. It was a sad day for clay tennis when he couldn’t play anymore due to his injuries.”

He was, and it is a true pity. I liked him, and he was a great personality also. He had one of the best backhands. He was terrible on grass however, and his best result at the US Open iirc was the QFs (he got routed by Kafelnikov one year).

A dirtballer who I liked watching was Gaudio, when he was in his prime. He’s way past it now, but he too had a great single backhand and played some phenomenal tennis in 04-05 on clay.

“That’s my opinion and I’m entitled to it, right?”

Absolutely, as are we all. No one could take that from you.

By the way, I’m no Ferrer fan and neither is my pal. The guy’s grunting sounds very orgasmic and off-putting. I dislike watching him for the same reason I dislike Sharapova. While Shaz’s grunts are purely irritating, his also sound very risque.

I’m just being realistic about it. I don’t like him, but he’s not where he is for no reason. He deserves some credit for that.


Glenn Says:

Can someone explain to me the stats/rationale behind Argentina using a fast surface when they host Spain? Isn’t clay ALSO the surface that Argentinians are more comfortable with?

Thanks


Glenn Says:

Oh, and can someone please explain how the “host” country gets chosen? Why isn’t Spain hosting it?


Giner (last time I promise!) Says:

“Rowdy crowd is part of the deal. He knew what he was getting himself into and that he would need to overcome it. When he plays at home, he gets the reverse treatment, so it’s all fair. Any time he plays at the US Open, or against Murray at Wimbledon, Hewitt in Australia, it’s going to be like a Davis Cup atmosphere.”

It’s also worth mentioning that Roddick will be playing a lot more tennis in the US than he will be in Spain (the US hosts the most tournaments each year of any country). Outside of away Davis Cup ties, the only event he would enter in Spain is Madrid Masters, which is a fast indoor hard court at high altitude (very much favouring Roddick’s game). I think Roddick has a good deal: He puts up with a tough crowd for one weekend every 2 meetings, and for most of the year, he has the crowd on his side.

The Bryans overcome tough crowds all the time. The same can only be expected of their teammates.


zola Says:

Vulcan,
thanks for that link. wow! I didn’t know there were so many surfaces! It is a whole industry! I heard the names for the hard courts but never for clay. very interesting. I shall go back to that table from now on for each tournament.

Perhaps the speed can change a little bit with the weather, altitude, humidity etc. but still Cat 1-5…should be good to know.

I would love to see a grass master series. I think Halle can be one as well as Hamburg. the problem is perhaps the short time between FO and Wimbledon.

Giner,
lol at you 4:11 post.

Ferrer-Roddick H2H is 4-2. Roddick won Ferrer once on carpet and once on hard in Paris 2006 and Miami 2007. Ferrer has won Roddick four times. Three times on hard (Miami 2007, Cincy 2007 and master series Shanghai 2007) and ONCE on clay ( the DC semis during the weekend).

http://www.atptennis.com/3/en/players/headtohead/?player1=Ferrer%2C+David&player2=andy+roddick

and we might see them in another match this week:
http://www.atptennis.com/1/en/2008news/beijing_monday.asp


zola Says:

correction:
***Roddick won Ferrer once on carpet and once on hard in Paris 2006 and Miami 2007.***

that should be Paris 2006 and Miami 2006.


Vulcan Says:

Glenn, in my opinion the main reason for Argentina not choosing clay is very simple…Rafa.
He is simply perceived as invincible on clay so anything they can do to avoid losing those two points to him is what they are going to do…If Rafa wasnt playing and it was someone else like Robredo or Almagro in his place Im not sure they would make the same decision.


zola Says:

correction #2:

Paris 2005, Miami 2006! sorry folks!


Giner (So I lied) Says:

“Oh, and can someone please explain how the “host” country gets chosen? Why isn’t Spain hosting it?”

They alternate. The last time Spain played Arg, Spain hosted. Now it’s Arg’s turn. Regardless of the result, next time they meet in future years it will be Spain hosting and then Arg again.

The very first time two countries ever play each other, choice of ground is decided by lot. In other words, a throw of the dice. Then it alternates.

“Can someone explain to me the stats/rationale behind Argentina using a fast surface when they host Spain? Isn’t clay ALSO the surface that Argentinians are more comfortable with?”

I don’t know if this is official yet, and I understand the irony since it’s not the best surface for either sides, but the rationale is that Argentina knows Spain are good on clay and they believe that even though clay is their own best surface, Arg can play better on a fast court than Spain can, so they are playing to Spain’s weaknesses.

With Del Potty on board, they really are capable of playing on fast surfaces. Before he joined the team, I don’t think Argentina will have considered that option, because other than Nalby, they don’t really have anyone strong enough on faster surfaces.

Nadal has had better results on grass and hard this year than both Nalby and DP however. The wildcard is going to be Ferrer.

There is merit to Arg picking a fast court. To make a call like this — playing to an opponent’s weakness rather than to your own strengths — requires a lot of confidence though. But maybe they thought it would have been even harder to best Spain on clay.

Do you know if this is even official?


Giner (OK, who am I kidding?) Says:

Vulcan Says:

“Glenn, in my opinion the main reason for Argentina not choosing clay is very simple…Rafa.
He is simply perceived as invincible on clay so anything they can do to avoid losing those two points to him is what they are going to do…If Rafa wasnt playing and it was someone else like Robredo or Almagro in his place Im not sure they would make the same decision.”

They can still win on clay. They will be banking on defeating Ferrer twice (which is entirely possible), and winning the doubles which as I said was key. Nalby is actually quite good in doubles. It’s winnable.

Nadal is no slouch on fast courts himself, so it’s not a guaranteed win just because they avoid clay. Arg will be a tough crowd to handle (but not as bad as Brazil) but I don’t think it will faze Nadal. He’s used to it and he has been through it enough times. He loses when he’s outplayed by his opponent, not by the crowd.

Having posted this, I’m going to close this window. I won’t read anything further for today.


zola Says:

Giner,
***Rowdy crowd is part of the deal. He knew what he was getting himself into and that he would need to overcome it. When he plays at home, he gets the reverse treatment, so it’s all fair. Any time he plays at the US Open, or against Murray at Wimbledon, Hewitt in Australia, it’s going to be like a Davis Cup atmosphere.****

absolutely.

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/tennis/2008-09-01-3015725036_x.htm

btw, if you see the SF matches, you will notice that the crowd behaved very well. Maybe better than the US Open crowd towards Djoko and Rafa in their matches against the Americans. But even so, neither Djoko nor Rafa complained about the crowd.


Vulcan Says:

As far as the non-clay head to heads go:

Rafa – Del Potro 2-0
Rafa – Nalbandian 0-2
Ferrer – Del Potro 2-0
Ferrer – Nalbandian 2-3

Keep in mind that 3 of those Nalbandian wins were from last year from his year ending hot streak.


zola Says:

Vulcan,

so althogether RAfa and Ferrer are 6-3 against Nalby and JMDP.

I think Rafa can win DP, if he is not too tired from Shanghai. But Nalby, I don’t know. If he plays like last year, he might go to Shanghai too!

Who do you think play their doubles? Canas? Acasuso?Monaco?


Von Says:

“By the way, I’m no Ferrer fan and neither is my pal. The guy’s grunting sounds very orgasmic and off-putting. I dislike watching him for the same reason I dislike Sharapova. While Shaz’s grunts are purely irritating, his also sound very risque.”

Nadal’s aaaaaaah, which is very loud BTW, has the same orgasmic tone as Ferrer’s, which is very distracting. I watch both their matches, most of the time with the mute button on. I find their running game distracting and I feel tired just watching them run their opponents into the ground — very unenjoyable to watch. I only watch their matches if they are playing a worthwhile opponent and with the mute button. That’s just me, I don’t enjoy any matches where the opponent grunts to the distraction of the other players. Quite a few women aside from Sharapova shriek ever so loudly, which has turned me off completely from watching the women’s matches.

Argentina, if they choose a very fast indoor court, which to me is Nalby’s best surface, should win their tie and finally receive a medal. I’d like to see Nalby win a DC medal before he retires. He’s one who I can say, is genuine in his DC undertaking.


grendel Says:

Vulcan: Rafa and Ferrer both 2-0 up against del Potro. Ah, but that’s the old del Potro. Those stats don’t count no more. Del Potro – new man. Wonder kid! You’ll see. Nalby good too, of course.


Vulcan Says:

Zola, Didnt Argentina use to have a very good doubles team in Hood/Lobo?…I recently read an article on ATP.com and I think one of those guys was stricken with cancer…tough break…but hes fighting to make a comeback. Chucho has been an important element in their previous Davis Cup ties and with his big serve I wonder if they wouldnt think about playing him instead of Nalbandian…particularly after Nalbandian
less than stellar performance against Russia. Also what happened to JI Chela?


Vulcan Says:

Grendel, Del Potro is the real deal…I agree.
I think the comparison to Joachim Johansson is appropriate.
Hes top 5 material for next year and I wouldnt want to have to deal with him on a fast indoor court. Im still wondering though if hes mature enough to handle the pressure.


jane Says:

I was going to say exactly what grendel said (honest) but he beat me to it – those stats about JMDP? Chuck out the window; file them under “G”. He’s turned a corner this summer; I am a believer. And Nalbandian can play on indoor or outdoor courts. Think of that barn-burner between him and Ferrer at the USO 07. Lost in the 5th by a Nalby dopper.


jane Says:

“And Nalbandian can play on indoor or outdoor courts.” Duh, that should say “indoor or outdoor HARD courts” since the question was hard v. clay.

Also Vulcan, don’t you think JMDP proved at the USO this summer in some tense matches where he was the underdog, not to mention this weekend, having to secure the W for his team, that he can handle pressure? He’s got me convinced anyhow.


jane Says:

OMG can’t type – dopper should be dropper! Time to sign off. This cold is making me cross-eyed.


Vulcan Says:

Jane, only the Olympics is more unpredictable than Davis Cup…and hes just a kid who, unless Nalbandian plays the way he did last Fall, will be trying to lead his country, which has never won a DC, to victory…thats alot to ask of a 19 year old. That spat with Murray in Rome is one of the things that makes me wonder how mature he is.


Daniel Says:

The way Del Potro cryed after he lost to Murray in US Open shows that this kid got used to winning and he likes it a lot (he is 25-1 over his last 26 matches). You can see it in his eyes that he just doesn’t want to lose anymore. And that is the first step to build a champion: the desire!!

I think he will be top 8 in the race after Madrid. He will play Tokyo before and win some more points. Will see!!!

Btw, what I really want to see in this years Masters Cup other than top 4 would be:

Del Potro
Roddick
Nalbandian
Tsonga (if he manages some good results in next MS)

But, we will probably have Davy and Ferrer replacing Nalby and Tsonga. I can’t see Nalby defending his points and he will drop of Shangai and out of top 10 in ATP rankings. Tsonga is to fresh from injury (knee surjery! I felt the pain just to mention it) so…


jane Says:

Daniel,

I think Blake is still in the race, and he’s playing Tokyo, so he might remain a factor. Wawrinka is also up there. But for sure the last few spots could be up for grabs depending on what happens the rest of the season.

—-

Vulcan, maybe I missed something – how do the Olympics relate to my previous post as to whether JMDP can handle pressure? I was referring to JMDP’s performances at the US Open and at the Davis Cup this weekend, wherein the responsibility fell on his shoulders to pull Argentina through. And he did.

As for that spat with Murray, I wouldn’t doubt that was as much Murray as JMDP, and they both followed it up with maturity during and after their match at the Open, exchanging kind words at the net.

I just get the sense JMDP is ready for the big time, and as Daniel says, he’s hungry too.


Roy Says:

gulu Says:
“….John Mc.Enroe is an American and a tennis legend,but I was really hurt when I heard him openly declaring that Federer,Nadal and Djokovic are way better than him!Now it’s so ridiculous!I definitely lost some respect for Mc.Enroe that day as I found that instead of encouraging Roddick who is the native of his country,he is demoralising him by such rash statements.What could poor Roddick hav done when his own countrymen treated him so badly and turned their back to him…”

Gulu, I need help from a knowledgable fan like you to decipher the meaning of this extract from your post.

Because, it’s not very clear to me how admission of superiority of Federer et al on J Mac’s part could tantamount to ill-treatment of A Rod.


gulu Says:

Hi Von! How are you? I m sendin u my next post soon.


Von Says:

gulu:

Hi, you’re up early. it’s 6:50 a.m my time. I had a long 8 hours of sleep, and I’m all bright-eyed and busy-tailed, and guess what, my court docs are done and my assistant will be filing them today. That means today I’m free as a bird to do as I want, at least for a few hours and then I have to do Voir dire. I’ll be on my computer for another hour, checking out my emails. Look forward to your post.


Von Says:

gulu:

I’ll look for your post later this afternoon. I have to leave now. Have a nice day, and I look forward to reading your post. Bye. :P


Roddick is a donkey Says:

I told you so! Nadal really whipped the donkey. It was crazy good, I tell ya…..

Pmac’s major mistake was plugging roddick as the no.1 player inspite of the conditions. He is just too filled with the donkey to think a little revolutionary. Someone like that whacko russian coach might have put querrey as no.1 and see if he could pull off that win against Ferrer. There is no reason to have not finished off Ferrer on the 1st day except that the donkey has been too pampered by the USTA with fast courts and the rowdy and uncivilized american crowd. Spain force-fed the americans their own medicine. I dont want to get too graphic but they really pushed it all the way into donkey’s throat till he gagged. Guess the donkey fan’s didnt like being force-fed their own medicine.

Good job donkey. You suck like no one else…. keep trying and losing like this and making a fool of yourself. It is so much fun to see Djokovic and Nadal whip you like the dumb mule you are. You wont be winning a major anytime soon. Thank God for that!


Vulcan Says:

Jane, I only bring up the Olympics because it’s similar to Davis Cup in that the normal head to heads that seem to apply on the tour are out the door. Also the pressures that players face are different from normal tour event pressure.


Vulcan Says:

Roddick is a donkey Says:

Good job donkey. You suck like no one else…. keep trying and losing like this and making a fool of yourself. It is so much fun to see Djokovic and Nadal whip you like the dumb mule you are.

Hehe, RIAD you seem rather ambivolent about your position on Roddick…are you absolutely sure you don’t like him?


Von Says:

“Thank God for that!”

Latent Talent: You actually know God and are one of his creatures? I don’t think so. Aren’t you ashamed of yourself to use God’s name while at the same time speaking curses to his creation. God would bow his head in shame to think he created a monster like you? Out of the same mouth they shall speak blessings and curses. Aren’t you afraid God will smite you for your uncharitable/lewd behavior? Where charity and love prevail, there God is evert on your side. And, since you know God, read 1 Cor. 13, vs. 1, as follows:

“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.” And, after that read Psalm 50, vs. 19:

“You use your mouth for evil and harness your tongue to deceit,
You speak continuopusly against your brother …
But I will rebuke you and accuse you to your face.”

You, Latent Talent, apparenly have no fear of God and make a mockery of Him. I hope you know that God says “Revenge is mine.”

Gosh, I feel dirty just writing this post to you. You are truly to be pitied.
______________

Sean Randall, forgive me, but I don’t understand how in conscience you could read this stuff, which has been on-going for several months and not do anything about it. It’s not only wrong, it’s in-humane.


grendel Says:

The thing abut Del Potro is that since he “turned the corner” as Jane put it, he’s answered all the questions. e.g. in the final of the 4th consec. tourney he won, he was understandably a bit jaded and not playing well (going on reports – didn’t see it),but he gutsed it out and did the job. It’s often said, I believe, that one measure of a player’s quality is what sort of results he gets in a big match when he’s a bit off.

In the US Open, he had a really difficult draw, and each match – Canas, Belluci, Simon (especially) – put him through the wringer, and each time he survived. Then he had an easy one against the extremely talented but tired Nishikori. Finally beaten by Murray – but not until he had given the Scot a helluva fright. Having had a bit of fun with this idea that Nadal only gets beaten when he’s tired, I’d better not make excuses for Del Potro, but good lord, you could see the man was weary. He’d drag himself around the court, but then miraculously pull himself together and play his heart out. A match which started rather tediously ended as a thriller. Murray’s relief was palpable.

Del Potro was the hero in the semi-final as we’ve just witnessed. Of course, we don’t know how he’ll react in the final. It might get to him, sure. But the evidence seems to suggest otherwise. I think it is reasonable to say that. In which case, he will be a formidable foe for anyone.


Roddick Is a Donkey Says:

Vulcan:

I despise Donkey from the bottom of my heart and like him from the heart of my bottom.

Von:

You can keep your pity to yourself…. You are the one to be pitied…. a miserable life that exists only to smear any player that defeats Roddick. It is because of FANS like you that he gets despised so much. You spent the whole week smearing mud on Ferrer. I am sure you have been doing this crap since the teams were announced.

Reciting the Bible does not condone your sins. You are filled with evil. The day you are nice and fair to other players, I promise you I will call the Donkey with his name. Till then, let the game go on. Evil begets evil. You deserve everything thrown at you here.


Von Says:

OK DONKEY:

How wonderful, a love/hate relationship with Roddick. LOL. This is easily summarized, according to you my watch dog, I’m not allowed to speak about any player, right? You’ve taken away my freedom of speech, including a few other posters who are fans of some players you don’t like, which is ludicrous and pitiful. Anyway, by the same taken all others are allowed to say whatever, and whenever, and however, they want about the Americans, especially Roddick, and no defense must be offered, because you, the ruler of this world, who is Satan BTW, will ensure that you keep me on a leash — and that is to take away my freedom of speech. I suppose this makes sense to you because you have a twisted mind, Satan, but in my world, where there is a true God and according to the Amendments of the US, I have Freedom of Speech. That said, regardless of whether you go into one of your sick, verbally abusive rants, which you do all of the time, and call Roddick and myself the most despicable of names, which is your way of nullifying my opinions, to which I’m entitled to BTW, just like the others who lambaste Roddick, then you’ve got a problem, and you’re going to have to SUCK IT UP JACKASS, because I WILL CONTINUE TO STATE MY OPINIONS, and you can retaliate with your sick abusive and uncouth rants, as you see fit. I believe that’s A FAIR DEAL. I’m glad you showed me your hand, because now I know what I have to do, which is ignore you completely. Your drivel epitomizes what you are deep down inside, a very mentally deranged thing, and it speaks volumes that you are to be pitied. And, if you feel I deserve all I get according to you, then I suppose you’ve appointed yourself my judge and jury. Your mision here on this site is not to speak about tennis, because you don’t interact on any tennis topics. All you do is target some posters, using the most vulgar language that you can spew out.

Well, get ready to spew some more venom, because Latent Talent, et al., I’m going to give my opinion whenever I want, and you can either SUCK IT UP, or STIFLE. NOW BRAY JACKASS, BRAY.


Von Says:

BTW, when you behave uncoutly, you’re not making me look bad, just yourself, but I suppose in your twisted mind the moments of sick pleasure you derive from your abuse is worth it to you. You have sunk so deep into the mire, that you can’t even realize how ridiculous you appear to others, but I suppose self-deception is strongly evident. You’re so gutless, that you can’t stick to just one post name. You have to hide behind a ton of aliases. Quite a few nice posters have left because of your inflammatory and crude rants towards them. I suppose Sean Randall enjoys your drivel because he allows you to systematically berate others and does not say anything. WOW.


Von Says:

“It is because of FANS like you that he gets despised so much.”

Really, then those who lambaste him, have a problem with me; I suppose i play not roddick and I have umpire tussles not Roddick, who is not singular, but the only one targeted, but oh, I forget, it’s because of me the posters are shredding him, and it’s not because they love to engage in tearing down every player, except for their own favourite.

“You spent the whole week smearing mud on Ferrer.”

The whole week, eh. Well considering the DC tie was played over the weekend and today is Tuesday, and I haven’t mentioned him today, let’s see, me thinks you’re over exaggerating — it’s just been 4 days.

“I am sure you have been doing this crap since the teams were announced.”

Going from the above sentence, you’re not even sure what I’ve done, and for how long. Now look what you’ve done, you’ve just gone and tied yourself up into a knot. Maybe, some kind soul can help you unravel it. Have fun, and don’t hold your breath that I’m going to refrain from stating my opinions because you have decided to put the fear of satan into me. LOL. You’ve got a job to do, and that is to follow me around the different threads, beginning as of now.


Roddick is a donkey Says:

Jackass? that is a good one…. now dont tell me I didnt tell you that I will post with the ID “Roddick is a Jackass”.

Anyways, expected nothing more from a totally shameless person like you who is devoid of any integrity whatsoever. More miserable times for you the jackass the well known donkey. Let us see who is going to have more fun. Go ahead and blabber as much as you want and make a fool of yourself….. It is been fun watching the donkey getting rapd by everyone!

Rap the donkey


Sean Randall Says:

Ok, Mr. Donkey, enough.


Giner Says:

“Nadal’s aaaaaaah, which is very loud BTW, has the same orgasmic tone as Ferrer’s, which is very distracting.”

He doesn’t sound that way to me. His grunts (which only seem to happen on his forehand, and maybe his serve) sound like he’s in pain, or someone’s beating him with a baseball bat. Ferrer sounds like he’s having sex, which isn’t what I hear from Nadal. Sharapova sounds like a fake moaner during sex, which is common in porn and maybe real life.

Tough crowds are a bigger issue than grunting however. Some DC matches are awful. My country is generally well behaved with the exception of Hewitt’s Fanatics group which are quite a disgrace, but other than that they are a fair bunch. They won’t boo winners. When we played in Brazil, the crowd booed every winner from Aust, and cheered all of our errors (even first serve faults), played instruments and didn’t shut up even when players were serving. Not even the umpire could keep them under control. Despite that, Hewitt somehow beat Guga in straights.

Argentina is on the same level as Brazil, though if they play indoor hard, maybe they won’t get a big enough stadium to have that kind of effect.

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