ATP Barcelona Blog — Day 5; Battling Elements, Nadal a Winner
by Staff | May 2nd, 2008, 2:45 pm

By Jill Neuharth

The heat is on both literally and figuratively. My personal battle with the elements took a slightly different turn today. Enduring both windburn and frostbite earlier this week, I can now add sunburn. Given the choice I’ll take the latter anytime.
Court No. 1 at 1 p.m. was the hot spot for doubles fans. Apparently Central Court was the spot for Spanish fans so needless to say I had room to stretch out. No. 4-seeded team Aspelin-Knowle wrestled with No. 5 seed Coetzee-Ullyett. Scandinavians don’t really strike me as the most passionate of folks, might be on account of all that ice up there. Aspelin, however did a really nice take-off of a Latin hissy fit. Rather conservative by a true prima donna standard, but fairly incendiary for a Swede. I guess if I double faulted to lose the game, I might be a bit incensed as well. The second set ended in a tiebreak victory for the Coetzee-Ullyett team to bring about, you guessed it, another tiebreak. Aspelin shouldn’t have to dwell on the fault as they took the tiebreak 10-4. The only cost was about an extra 30 minutes in the sun for me, so thanks for the sunburn Simon.

Aspelin-Knowle will next face 12th ranked and No. 7 seed Fyrstenberg-Matkowski who from here on out will simply be known as the Poles because typing their names is almost as bad as having to pronounce them. The Poles vanquished Ancic-Zverev, the alternates when Tipsarevic injured his ankle. Hopefully the Poles appreciate the Ancic-Zverev efforts on their behalf. They knocked out both Haase-Karlovic AND second seed Nestor-Zimonjic. Last and well, probably least exciting, Lopez-Verdasco crashed the Argentine Nalbandian-Ker soiree in two quick sets, 7-5, 6-2.

Call me crazy, but I’m not sure Tommy Robredo liked his birthday gift from David Ferrer. After an hour-plus marathon of a first set, Ferrer led Robredo 7-6. The second-seeded Ferrer blew out Robredo’s candles for the second time in a month, trouncing him 6-4 in the second. Fellow Spaniard and Barcelona resident Albert Montanes was sent home, good thing it is not too far, by the OTHER Swiss player. Wawrinka’s score, a creepy 6-6-6 (6-3, 6-7, 6-4). Still playing on Central Court are Alfaro and Gremelmayr. As of 8:30 the score is 6-2 for the German. Sorry to say you will not find out the result here, I’m hungry and my dinner plans await.

So, I keep thinking I am forgetting something. Oh yeah, Rafael Nadal played today as well. That was where I was going with the opening heat comment and I fear I have gotten off track. Big news of the day, Nadal won. Considering he has won 101 of his last 102 matches on clay, I supposed that shouldn’t be too much of a shocker. Here is my big prediction for tomorrow: Nadal has a 99% chance of a victory. I’ll even go out on a limb to say the same is true for Sunday. If I’m wrong I’ll be the first one to stuff my high-heeled foot back in my mouth.

Special note for poster Rod: Do you approve of my new verbiage? Editing is not my forte so feel free to take that job on yourself. Kiss Kiss

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9 Comments for ATP Barcelona Blog — Day 5; Battling Elements, Nadal a Winner

Clinton Says:

Hey Jill, thanks for the updates, I am visiting Barcelona from Seattle and my wife and I were on-site all day Wednesday. We were waiting outside the entrance to the stadium hoping to wish James well when we walked on but realized while we were waiting the first set was nearly over. BAD timing. and from watching the rest of the match I think he could have used additional support from the first point. So frustrating to see when he can’t the positive energy going. Any extra Sunday tickets we can trade for? A nice dinner in Barca?

jane Says:


fed is afraid Says:

no one can beat him on clay!! he is amazing!!

Rod Says:

this is bullshit my comment was banned even though I’m Rod.

Jill Says:

Hey Clinton, If you and your wife are still in town try Txapela 8-10 Passeig de Gracia. They have the best Tapas in the city and the prices are reasonable. Make sure to have the house ” Vino Blanco”. Arrive at around (pm when they open or after 11:30 to avoid the queue. Try for seats at the counter.

Clinton Says:

thanks Jill; may check it out tonight. Great match on Sunday; hope you enjoyed it. Would have liked to see a tighter 3rd set but was a toughly fought match I thought.

Clinton Says:

thanks again Jill; went last night and enjoyed it. Wondered if you were there….

Jill Says:

Wish I had been there, I am back in Florida. Glad you liked the resturant! Maybe I’ll start mentioning places in future blogs. I do when I am travel writing. How many tapas did you try? We had 26 different ones between the two of us but ordered 3 of the #14.

Paula Says:


i´m living in the most amazing city of Europe….Bcn ofcourse! Been to some of the games, but it´s really nice to read this blog afterwards, when you´re just a fan of tennis you sometimes miss this inside info……..FUN to read all. Keep it going, will track this site more often for all the other tournaments which I maybe can´t attend.

Muchas gracias para todo!


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