Tennis-X Notes: ESPN Confirms Gilbert to Coach Murray

Posted on July 10, 2006

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Rafael Nadal
had won 14 straight tournament finals until Fed beat him Sunday (his last lost was also to Fed at Miami in '05). Federer has won four straight Wimbledons, tying Pete Sampras' consecutive mark. Bjorn Borg won five straight. Federer is 8-1 in Slam finals, and has won 48 straight on grass, and 28 straight at Wimbledon including 84 of 89 sets. Federer had lost five straight to Nadal until Sunday...The last time Rafael Nadal got bageled was last year in Monte Carlo by Guillermo Coria. Nadal had held 80 straight times until getting broken three straight in that first set against Federer. Nadal is the first Spaniard to reach the Wimbledon final in the Open Era...American Jan-Michael Gambill went 0-3 Saturday in World TeamTennis play, losing in singles to Nick Monroe (ouch), while Anna Kournikova went 1-2...From "If you need an indication of the gap between the Top Two and the rest of the ATP, consider this: Rafael Nadal had held in 80 straight games entering the final. And Roger Federer bagelled him in the first set."...Jimmy Connors writing for the BBC: "Roger Federer is starting to remind me of Bjorn Borg. Not just in the way he's dominating Wimbledon year after year, but also in his approach to the sport. In my playing days I could never get to Borg, never knew what he was thinking. He just kept going, playing the sort of tennis that made him who and what he was. Federer is just the same, especially in his attitude and the way he never lets himself gets flustered. Look at him after the match. He came off and said he was a little nervous serving it out but I just thought 'what does it take for him to show some emotion?' He's so calm and collected during the course of play and he's just the same walking around with the trophy."...Luke Jensen writing for ESPN: "Going into this fortnight, I honestly thought Andre Agassi was going to beat [Rafael] Nadal. I couldn't believe someone who plays eight feet from the baseline and had so little experience on grass was going to be able to pick it up like Nadal did. He has a great ability to close in on the ball from where he stands and his serve was noticeably bigger at Wimbledon. He's only going to get better and that's bad news for the rest of the field. Going forward to the US Open, I would love to see a Federer-Nadal final. American Andy Roddick is off the pace. His compatriot James Blake is a top-10 player, but for him to win slams he is going to have to be as mentally tough as Federer and Nadal. The rivalry that you have in Federer and Nadal has the potential to rival Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe in terms of their contrasting styles."...Greg Garber writing for ESPN: "There was no formal, on-air farewell to broadcasting from Brad Gilbert on Sunday. The former coach of Andre Agassi and Andy Roddick and future coach of Scotland's Andy Murray glibly rolled through what could be his final Wimbledon appearance as an ESPN analyst without once mentioning his future. Gilbert's imminent departure has been a poorly-kept secret here at the All England Club for the entire fortnight. According to sources familiar with the negotiations, some technical details have yet to be worked out between Gilbert and the Lawn Tennis Association. Still, it is understood that Gilbert will receive approximately 500,000 pounds per year ($920,000) to work with the 19-year-old, who is seen by many as a future top-10 player. Gilbert himself declined to confirm that the deal is done, but did not sound like a man who will be returning to broadcasting any time soon."