Andy Roddick Discusses Retirement, Lebron, Federer, Williams and More on ESPN’s PTI

by Tom Gainey | August 5th, 2010, 10:35 pm

Andy Roddick was a special in-studio guest today on the acclaimed Pardon the Interruption (PTI) show on ESPN.

Roddick, who is in Washington for the Legg Mason Tennis Classic, sat down with hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon to discuss a variety of topics.

Among the quips, Roddick gave his thoughts on Lebron James’s controversial move to the Miami Heat, which is Roddick’s favorite team.

He also was asked of the statement he made years ago that should he fall outside of the Top 15 he would retire.

The 9th-ranked Roddick said the statement was made in private and off the record to promoter/agent Donald Dell. He then added, “I don’t think I’m the kind of guy that’s gonna stay on the tour just to be on tour. Just to exist. As long as I feel like I can keep winning tennis tournaments – I’ve won two this year – as long as I feel like I can enter a tournament to win a tournament then I love playing. I feel pretty lucky to play. But I don’t think I’ll stay and do the retirement tour, so to speak.”

Roddick also gave his take on Roger Federer’s recent hiring of Paul Annacone.

“Maybe he’s just looking for something to give him a spark and that comes in the voice of someone line ‘Cone that’s great,” Roddick. “Paul’s a great guy he worked with Pet for many, many years. i think he has to hear it from someone who’s been with a champion comparable to roger. At this point there’s no reason he shouldn’t do it.”

Roddick also talked about his friendship with Serena and Venus Williams. And the former No. 1 speculated of a match in Cincinnati against outspoken Bengals wide out Chad Ochocinco. Roddick said he could beat the star receiver left-handed.

If the weather holds Roddick will be playing shortly in D.C. against Gilles Simon.

Click here for the full video interview from ESPN.

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38 Comments for Andy Roddick Discusses Retirement, Lebron, Federer, Williams and More on ESPN’s PTI

TD (Tam) Says:

I’ve never understood why people think Roddick is so arrogant while the truly arrogant one Federer is called classy. Arod consistently comes across as intelligent and articulate in all of his interviews. He definitely has a bright future ahead of him after he retires from tennis (hopefully that won’t be soon!)

TennisMasta Says:

I have never read Roddick being thought of a arrogant. He is definitely a classy guy.

Federer is unique in every way including his completely open and candid way of talking for a super champion. We are so used to cliches and since Roger doesn’t give us those, and he is a foreigner who is the greatest ever, clearly he must be arrogant.

Skeezerweezer Says:

Arrogant? Lol. Don’t go there. I will match up his court mannerisms against any other player. Bring it. As far as interviews, him of course being the most interviewed tennis player in history, I am sure you can “Cut and paste” some statements that seem off the wall, but give the guy a break and look at the the big picture. I am sure we can “cut and Paste” with other top pros and get the same result if not worst. “You tube” is a “catch all” with this. Tennis players at the pro level are selfish, arrogant, confident at some level as they need to be like a boxer, it’s an individual sport, not a team sport. It is them against everyone else. Once they are on the court, no one can help them but themselves ( uh, supposedly )

Quit pickin on the GOAT, It just shows jealousy…

Karly Says:

Roger has set the bar pretty high for class, especially ON THE COURT, where you never see him retire when he’s losing, even though he’s had reason to more than once lately, you don’t see him stall, you see him give calls to opponents, he’s as fair play as they come. He’s pure class to officials, ball kids, tournament directors and organizers, he gives the most interviews to please the press of anyone, he compliments his peers regularly unlike some other top stars who shall remain namless, and he committed himself to not just help HIMSELF to more money and fame, but to the sport itself, incuding being president of the player’s council for years even though it takes precious time away from his own goals and desires. He’s given tirelessly to millions of fans on and off the court, signing and signing autographs for hours, never ignoring strangers who ask for a piece of his time….why do you all think he’s won so many sportsmanship awards voted by players and press, and been voted most popular male player by fans so many times? He gives until it almost hurts, it’s unusual for such a star sportsman to be so giving in the way he has been giving to the public and to his sport, appreciate him while he is still around… nobody like him with his combination of great talent and success combined with generosity and kindness in general is going to come along again ..

writerfan Says:

Roger, being G.O.A.T., knows he is supremely talented. People who are extremely talented know this. He is also extremely honest. Every tennis player is arrogant to a certain degree. They have to be extremely selfish in order to win day in and day out. In fact, they have to pretty much only take care of themselves. Roger couldn’t win the way he has without being incredibly inward focused. I, in fact, find Nadal rather disingenuous. Even when he’s beating up on Roger, he still says Roger’s the best. It’s reverse psychology and keeps the pressure on Roger and off himself. I don’t think Nadal is honest at all. It’s pure gamesmanship. Roger just says what he feels which is very refreshing. Andy R. does that too, which is why I like him as well. Djokovic stopped being interest when he became politically correct, and to me, Nadal is the least open of them all. When he wins, he often says he got lucky. No, he didn’t get lucky. He was simply better. With Roger there is no political correctness or false modesty – just the truth.

dabeast Says:

I always said, Fed is a once-in-a-lifetime player, a champ on the court, but an even greater champion off the court. What he does behind the scenes, with the fans, media and extra stuff to promote the game, he’s the greatest ambassador the sport has ever had. Guys, pls just appreciate him while he’s still around. You’re never gonna see anyone the likes of him for the next century.

Truly, they broke the mould with this one.

steve Says:

writerfan: very well expressed. You’ve hit the nail on the head.

Nadal is a passive-aggressive personality par excellence. He’s always saying his opponent is better, he’s not the favorite at the FO despite having won it so many times and cruising through the clay season. Always he wants to deflect pressure off of himself. Always he has to be the underdog, even where he’s won many times before.

He panders well; he could be a politician. That he is probably not consciously aware that he is pandering is of no moment–his uncle no doubt taught him, or perhaps he learned on his own, if you act a certain way, if you are very polite and take care to be inoffensive, and bow and scrape, people will be flattered and leave you alone. And I’m sure he never thought about it any more deeply than that.

People adopt all sorts of affectations that give them an advantage in life without being consciously aware that that’s what they’re doing. That they’re not aware of it makes it no less irritating.

This is a fact of life: if you are straightforward, people will give you no end of crap for it. If you dissemble, you’ll be praised for your virtue and modesty. Such is the nature of human hypocrisy.

I like Roddick’s bluntness, flashes of temper, and wisecracking; Del Potro is also blunt and he has a wonderfully dry sense of humor. Tsonga’s so cocky, he’s great. Djokovic is philosophical; and he’s not always as PC as you might think:

‘So what was better, winning a grand-slam tournament or sex?
“Nothing, nothing, nothing is better than sex, it is what God created us to do,” [Djokovic] replied. But what if he were to win Wimbledon? “Ask me the question again on that day,” he said.’

And of course, Federer, with his unique mixture of blunt honesty and graciousness, and the impish, puckish wit. Through it all runs a childlike sense of wonder and enthusiasm about tennis.

Other players, like Lendl and Connors, have been cruel kings of the sport, mocking and belittling other players and using their position at the top to make others feel small and crush their spirits. Federer never does that; he raises others up along with him, and encourages them to grow and improve, makes them feel part of a larger community. That is the mark of a great spirit.

Lena Says:

Federer is brutally honest and for Americans who are use to suger coated false modesty PR twisted drivel he can be percieved as arrogant. Like Mohammad Ali said “it aint arrogance if its true” i.e. if someone matches their words with excellence than its honesty; arrogance is when you think you’re better than you actually are;

He’ll tell it like it is; he won’t do a Rafa ie. say he’s not the French open favourite all though he won it 10 trillion times.

As for Roddick being better class; forget the self-depricating small talk he gives in interviews and judge him on his on-court antics. mid-way through a match against Monfils in RG he tells the french youngester “your not as good as you think you are”; he fights with umpires far more than Roger ever has…but hey if roger was American the arrogance conversation wouldn’t be an issue

oliver Says:

I always said, Fed is a once-in-a-lifetime player, a champ on the court, but an even greater champion off the court. What he does behind the scenes, with the fans, media and extra stuff to promote the game, he’s the greatest ambassador the sport has ever had. Guys, pls appreciate him while he’s still around. You’ll never see anyone the likes of him in the next century.

Truly, they broke the mould with this one.

Purcell Says:

Hey Tennismasta, Skeezer, Karly, Writerfan and Steve. Thanks for your brilliant responses. You clearly understand the human condition! When an appropriate topic comes up you should all post these thoughts on Bleacher, and especially Tennistalk he he.

Ailing Roddick Shocked by Simon at Now American-Less Washington Says:

[…] Andy Roddick Discusses Retirement, Lebron, Federer, Williams and More on ESPN’s PTI […]

Huh Says:

Roddick is humble and so is Roger, they are both EXTREMELY intelligent as well. The only arrogant fool is TD(Tam). TD is makin a good joke of himself here, way to go!!!!!!! ;)

I like tennis bullies Says:

good for roddick he is a bully champion
federer is the goat of sore loser crybabies loll

grendel Says:

I like tennis bullies! How’re you doing? Not seen you around for yonks. Got a bit worried, ’cause I assumed you’d decided Fed’s finished, taking all the joy out of having a good kick. But you’re back, you know something, it must be that Fed’s gonna be a force again and you’ve spotted it! Allelujia!

Fot Says:

there are some great comments here (for the most part). Thanks for those thoughtful comments – especially about Roger – I agree with you. Plus, guys – remember – Roddick gives his interviews in English (the only language he speaks). So he’s naturally more comfortable with the questions and can be really funny on a lot of occassions. For Roger, he not only have to do it in English, but Swiss German, High German, and French on EVERY interview. So give him some slack if he can’t be ‘candid’ like Roddick in his interviews. I have watched posted interviews with Roddick and he’ll be in the room for about 10 minutes answering questions. That same tournament, Roger will be in the interview room over 30 minutes answering questions. That’s a lot after every match. I’m sure the reporters appreciate whatever Roger gives him, especially considering a lot of the former #1 players had no time (or not a lot of time) for the media.

Jake Willens Says:

I totally respect Rodd’s consistency and class and humor!

grendel Says:

Nadal is definitely not “passive-aggressive”,a state of mind which entails a sort of sickness, and Nadal is, like Federer, a surprisingly normal guy.

This business of modesty, I’ve long been curious about it, and I used to think Nadal was guilty of false modesty. I have changed my mind about that, I have become convinced that he is genuinely modest and doesn’t particularly like the limelight. About clay, I read him once kind of conceding that he was the best – and he was so obviously uneasy about doing this that I couldn’t help believing that he was not putting on an act.

That his team deliberately downplay his prospects with a view to reducing the pressure on him is certainly true and, whilst possibly irritating,this is hardly culpable. Also, it’s very hard to know what is candour and what is obfuscation. At the AO, before Nadal’s match with Murray, Uncle Toni said that Murray was about the worst possible opponent for his charge. I remember thinking that that had the ring of truth – and it was so, was it not?

Nadal and Federer are both people it is very easy to misunderstand, in my view. I have had long battles with people who are insistent that Federer is swollenheaded, whereas I agree with those who say that generally he is simply honest.

Both these chaps are human, though, their huge success renders them open to huge temptations, and it’s kind of silly to portray them as morally unassailable. Nobody is that.

jane Says:

grendel, great post @ 12:39, extremely fair. Agree whole-heartedly to all.

steve Says:

Who said anything about morality? We’re not talking about anything so weighty as that. Nadal appears to be a nice, down-to-earth young man. He engages in charity work and is on the ATP players’ council. But he does engage in gamesmanship, which is not against the rules, but which is certainly not in accord with the image of Nadal the innocent naif which is marketed to us by his camp and the media.

If by “false modesty” you mean he really is puffed up and full of ego and he’s deliberately lying when he deprecates himself, I don’t think that is the case.

But as I said, you needn’t be aware of particular behaviors to do them. We all engage in unconscious patterns of behavior that give us an advantage in life. For example, perhaps a tall strong man will use his size in subtle ways to intimidate others. Nothing overtly aggressive, perhaps he has a habit of taking a step closer towards someone when things don’t go his way, subtly crowding the other guy’s space. Or a super-firm handshake that’s meant to prove his strength.

This can all be done without conscious intention; it’s just something people do, because it works for them. And they repeat it because it worked the first time, and it becomes a habit. All unconsciously.

Nadal’s modesty is like that, I think. An unconscious pattern he engages in because it gives him an advantage. It takes pressure off of him.

I am sure he is perfectly sincere when he says Murray can win the tournament. Of course it also happens to serve the purpose of putting a burden of expectation on Murray and psyching him out.

He is interesting, almost pathological, because he has many such quirks and tics.

For instance, the “VAMOOOOOOOS”es, fist pumps, lengthy service games, strategically timed injury and bathroom breaks, water bottle issues, pre-match rituals, etc.

These serve to distract the opponent and induce errors, which is crucial for a player who relies so much on his opponents’ errors. Again, he may not understand consciously that that’s what he’s doing.

His hypersensitivity to injury. He does get real injuries, I am sure, but I think his reactions to them are more mental than physical.

To me, he is a very strange beast, with much subconscious weirdness going on. Others appear to be insensitive to these currents, but I find them both fascinating and offputting.

grendel Says:

Well, Steve, by calling Nadal a “a passive-aggressive personality par excellence”, you were unquestionably making a moral charge – unless you have mistaken the meaning of “passive etc”. It is not a light charge, and is miles away from Nadal’s personality.

“Nadal’s modesty is like that, I think. An unconscious pattern he engages in because it gives him an advantage. It takes pressure off of him.” This is very tendentious stuff. There may be truth in it – since we don’t know Nadal, we have no means of having an opinion – but anyone making such a charge lays himself open to the charge of hypocrisy. Because this kind of analysis can be made of almost any virtuous behaviour whatever, including one’s own. Honesty, kindness, patience – all masks for self-aggrandising behaviour on this reading. And of course, sometimes they are. But sometimes, kindness is just – kindness, and honesty is just – honesty. And modesty is just – modesty.

That Nadal’s “modesty” serves him well is true. But that doesn’t mean it is false, or unconsciously engaged in to serve his purposes. How do you know? My hunch is that the modesty is a natural character trait, but sometimes it entails some of the manouevring Steve ascribes to it. But this kind of mix is almost universal,it’s what makes us humans and not saints.

“He does engage in gamesmanship”. There is no suggestion here that this is unconscious. There’s two things to say here, I think. First of all, all sportsmen engage in gamesmenship. It’s more obvious in a strongly physical sport like football than in tennis, but there are no complete innocents in tennis I shouldn’t have thought, though some come close. Is Nadal particularly bad in this respect?

This brings in the second point. The things which Steve brings up as examples of gamesmanship are actually highly contentious. “the “VAMOOOOOOOS”es, fist pumps” “serve to distract the opponent and induce errors”. That is a possibility. It is also possible that they are designed to spur himself on, to help in the endless task of maintaining concentration and occasionally to record simple delight in a spectacular shot. That is just as possible – frankly, more plausible in my opinion, although I think there is an element of gamesmanship there too. Quite what the ratio is is impossible to say – which suggests dogmatic assertion is unwise. Bear in mind, too, that fist pumping is extremely common. The exaggerated pumping of players like Nadal and Hewitt I have always personally disliked – too bad for me.

“lengthy service games” – I have always criticised this, though jane noted, and I backed her up, that there was a great improvement in the Wimbledon final. It certainly shouldn’t be allowed, but I actually don’t think that it is an example of gamesmanship. Nor do I think are “water bottle issues, pre-match rituals,etc”. Possibly a bit, I suppose, but overwhelmingly the explanation is obvious: Nadal is notorious for having by far the best focus, that is the ability to sustain concentration for extended periods, not only on the tour but possibly in tennis history. How do you think this is achieved? Magic? A few sessions with an Indian guru? I suspect not. All these things which Steve berates are – it seems to me likely (but not certain) – aids in the never ending struggle to maintain focus. This is critically important, after all. Nadal himself has said that his mind is biggest weapon. And it is a commonplace among commentators so to say. Where does he get this ability from? Who knows? But clearly it is fallible and can’t be depended upon without endlessly repeated input.

“strategically timed injury and bathroom breaks”. Here, I must confess ignorance – but I do know that this charge has been hotly debated, and it is quite possible that the charge is unjust, is just, or is a mixture of the two. Note also whatever you think, you can’t deny but that the practice is common.

“To me, he is a very strange beast, with much subconscious weirdness going on”. We’re all very strange beasts with much subconscious weirdness going on if Mr.Freud is to be believed. I repeat, Nadal, like Federer (although very differently) strikes me as a remarkably normal young man, considering the attention he gets, which is very definitely not ordinary.

Snowyc Says:

A lot of people forget that Nadal’s English is much, much inferior to Federer’s (or Djokovic or Roddick), and when you are speaking in a language that you are not very comfortable with, you tend to want to be safe and use those – often few & limited – phrases that you know best. Try answering open questions in a language other than the one you use most often in front of a crowd and see how it feels.

People who have been following Nadal’s career know that he is extremely uncomfortable speaking to the press, especially if they are not Spanish. Actually, he is known to be very articulate and frank when speaking to the Spanish press.

Sometimes, the greatest are the most strangest. This goes for almost all great champions, Federer included. They are just different in different ways and all have their major strengths & failings. Also, one’s meat is another’s poison — what is off-putting to one may be easily overlooked or even admired by another.

Btw, yes, excellent post, Grendel.

Anna Says:

Rafa was asked before the FO what he thought about being the favorite to win the tournament. He said, “I was the favorite last year, but I didn’t win”. In other words being a favorite is a bit of a dry well. It means nothing, so why would he care to promote himself in a false way.

Every player takes to the court with a certain mind set and motivation. Rafa recognizes that he can be beaten on any given day. It shows respect and appreciation for his opponents game and keeps him ever vigilant playing each point as if it were his last point. This is what works for him. It’s a mind set, not false humility.

If quirks and tics is what determine pathological behavior, then about 80% of the population qualifies and if that’s the case the other 20% of the population would be abnormal. I know of no pathology based on “habits”, learned or otherwise.

Unfortunately for Rafa, he is not nearly as articulate as either Andy or Roger. He speaks only Spanish. If he had trained in Barcelona rather than Majorca with other young Spaniards he probably would be much more fluent in English, but then he more than likely would be less fluent in tennis. Which do you think he prefers? I certainly know what I prefer. Rafa is damned if he does, and damned if he doesn’t in regard to what he says to the media and so he’s learned to speak in generalities. Yes,there are those who will criticise his so called lack of honesty, but then that’s probably better than saying something that will only be twisted into controversy, which is a favorite game of the media. Rafa does not like controversy. It takes away from his purpose which is to win tennis matches.

Nadal hasn’t been marketed as naive since he was naive, in the early years. Every player on tour knows Rafa’s game inside and out. Murray has said it’s to his favor to know Rafa’s routine on the court. He knows exactly what’s coming. If he was varying his serve time from 5 seconds, to 15 seconds, to 10 seconds, etc., then there might be gamesmanship involved. But that’s not the case. He’s an easy read, he just isn’t an easy get.

Whatever Nadal is, it’s made him an extraordinary champion, and if it were possible to clone him in some way, there would be a good many folk standing in line saying “I’d like some Nadal please”.

Anna Says:


I do aspire to be you!!!

skeezerweezer Says:

I will add that what you like or don’t like about a players “tactics” or “habits” on the court in the end are irrevelent if it is with in the rules. For me, I don’t like his time on service, and some other things. But really, that is just too bad for me. So far in his career, he has played 99.9% within the rules. Now if someone is breaking them and getting away with it that is another thing. If anyone thinks this is happening, your displeasure should be a letter to the ATP, not the player.

I have to agree that Rafa is very methodical, and has not changed his behavior/routine/habits ( whatever you want to call it ) since I have started watching him play many moons ago. The only thing that has changed is his play, for the better of course, and oh yeah I guess his English is better? no? Much better than my Spanish, Coma esta?

One last thing, the fist pumping and Vamos stuff. Although I may dislike it, there is consistency in what he does, there is no “special gamesmenship timing” other that anyone else who gets a break or an important point. I have to say that as a player it is common courtesy not to celebrate on someone elses unforced error ( what is the difference? As an example, if you have a sitter at the net and you whiff it, that is a true unforced error, not if the opposing player forced it. I hope I don’t have to explain that one further ).

The one thing I truly admire is he can be down 1-5 in a set, lost the first ( Although I know this has been a rare thing but I have seen it )and looks like there is no way he is going to win. He then pulls off one passing FH that looks great, but he is still losing badly. He fist pumps at that moment like he is ahead and winning. It showed me he plays to win every point, not the game, the set, the match. I have not seen anyone with this “attitude”. They guy gets excited when he makes a great play, no matter what the score! Furthermore, what are signaling to your opponent? “I am never out of any point, set, match, until it is over”.


grendel Says:


I bet – honestly – that it is much more fun to be you. Let’s do a swap!

Von Says:

OY VEY, this is supposed to be a thread in connection with Roddick’s discussion on retirement, and it has gone down the usual path, Nadal vs. Federer.

Those of us who have been regularly posting on this site are very much aware how the wind blows on many topics. Some are allowed to vent their feelings, albeit whenever uncalled for, but when others do the same, they are picked apart for so doing, which ushers in the back-scratching and kudos. LOOL.

Von Says:

I think that saying someone is “passive-agressive” is far from making a moral charge.

I agree with Steve that Rafa does have a tendency to be “passive-aggressive” and this is not a criticism, it’s an observation. There’s no need to make a mountain out of a mole-hill on this observation. I think there have been far worse immoral charges made on these blogs, which pertained to character = immorality. A “passive-aggressive” tendency is by no means an “immoral” charge. There are differences between personality and character flaws. For example would one call a “Narcissistic personality disorder” which involves “grandiosity, need for admiration … boastful and pretentious.” and so on, an immoral charge? I don’t think so. If then, a narcissistic person is by no means immoral, then the same rule of thumb would/should apply to a “passive aggressive” personality tendency being termed immoral.

Anna Says:

Your comment is about as jaded as one can get. You need a good shot of vitamin B12. Don’t thank me, just inject it right into the old buttock. Then you can get down from your high horse without
falling to your knees.

I love being me, but I’d really like to spend a day or two inside your noggin. Honestly, just two days and I could rule the world.

grendel Says:

Von, questions involving morality are always difficult. Perhaps one should avoid them.

Anna Says:

Which of these passive agressive tendencies do you think apply to Rafa.

+ avoiding responsibility
+ being inefficient on purpose
+ complaining, blaming others
+ procrastination
+ resisting other people’s suggestions
+ having unexpressed anger
+ fear of authority
+ perform in a way that is useless
+ perform requested actions to late to be helpful
+ sabotage an action to show anger they can’t
express in words

What have you seen Von that tells you that Rafa fits the definition of a passive/aggressive personality.

Naziran Khan Says:

Hi everyone-
I am enjoying this tennis site. Most people are very nice here. I really like Roddick.

Von Says:

Lol, grendel, will you be following your own advice?

Mindy Says:


Tennistalk doesn’t need anyone from this site to post anything or help the people there who are more than capable of conducting an informative, intelligent, knowledgeable discussion about the sport. It is truly annoying to see this kind of superiority and conceit over and over again. It’s not a competition, for heaven’s sake!

Now, as far as this unbelieveable discussion about “passive-aggressive Rafa”, I really think some people are looking for things that really aren’t there or reading things into his behavior that are absurd. If Rafa could read English and see this stuff, he would probably laugh his head off or seriously think some had lost it completely.

Who cares! It’s a non-issue! Good grief, must his on-court habits, tics, superstitions, rituals be analyzed literally to death? Rafa is a champion. He does what works for him on the court. There’s no subconscious meaning or underlying symbolic truth or mystery to be discovered. Immoral? That has to be a joke, right?

Everyone has their quirks, idiosyncrasies, whatever. Rafa seems to be a humble, kind, somewhat shy, grounded young man. I don’t think he is nearly as complex as some would like to make him out to be. He loves to compete, to win, it’s in his DNA, he lives and breathes it. When the battle is over, he goes home to his beloved Mallorca and just hangs out with his close friends, goes fishing on his boat and enjoys life.

All I know is that as far as I am concerned, when he gets out on a court and plays tennis, it’s like a transformation. He is like no one else I have ever seen. I just want to sit back and enjoy it.

As far as the comment about Lendl and Connors denigrating their competition, well, all I can say is that I take great exception to putting Lendl in that category of player. It’s beyond insulting.

Dory Says:

Roddick is good to everyone except chair umpires. Respect them Andy and people won’t call you arrogant.

grendel Says:

Von, when I said perhaps one should avoid them, the use of the word “one” was perhaps a bit fainthearted – I did mean myself. But in general, it is not easy to draw hard and fast lines concerning morality. About Nadal, he is absolutely not “passive aggressive” – I know this for two reasons. One, in the course of my work, I come across a lot of passive aggression, and it is not difficult to recognize. Two, I have indulged in it myself, and am very aware of the disagreeable feelings which accompany it.

Huh Says:

Bullies is afraid! ;)

Paul Says:

There is some deep and interesting psychoanalysing of Rafa going on here. Rather than going exclusively down the Freudian route, however, I think one character trait of Nadal’s that we need to acknowledge is that he is an obsessive-compulsive: the short-tugging before he serves, the symmetrical lining up of the water bottles, the repeated ball-bouncing etc. There is nothing wrong with this, except that his routines are often slow and irritating to his opponents; hence why Soderling and he fell out in Wimbledon a few years back because Soderling basically interpreted this as gamesmanship and then mocked Nadal’s short-tugging.
Personally, I do not believe Nadal is a cheat; but I do agree with some of the comments that he is not completely oblivious to the impact this can have on his opponents. But primarily, I think Nadal is one of those guys who draws mental strength from his many rituals and no-one in the world is going to stop him from observing them, despite umpires having warned him for slow-play on numerous occasions.
Another point: if there IS someone who has on occasion CONSCIOUSLY indulged in gamesmanship it Rafa’s uncle Toni, who has more than once been accused of coaching from the stands. In the early days of his rivalry with Rafa, Federer picked up on this and umpire Cedric Mourier (I think) recently warned Rafa about his uncle’s coaching during a match. Though he was visibly annoyed at the time, later Rafa semi-admitted that his uncle is no saint in this department by saying ‘Sometimes Toni talks too much’.

nadline Says:

TennisMasta Says:

I have never read Roddick being thought of a arrogant. He is definitely a classy guy.

Federer is unique in every way including his completely open and candid way of talking for a super champion. We are so used to cliches and since Roger doesn’t give us those, and he is a foreigner who is the greatest ever, clearly he must be arrogant.


A foreigner to which country???????? Tennis is not based in any country so why is Roger a ‘foreigner’?

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