Federer Wins, Sloane Upsets Sharapova In Connors Debut; Nadal, Djokovic, Serena Wednesday In Cincinnati
by Staff | August 14th, 2013, 12:10 am

Defending champion Roger Federer overcame a break deficit in the second set to edge Philipp Kolhschreiber 6-3, 7-6(7) in the second round at the Cincinnati Masters Tuesday night. Federer, a 5-time champion at the tournament, is now 7-0 against the German in his career, and given his recent slump the win was one of his best of the summer.

“I think it was a match where I had to sort of just fight to come through and hope get over the finish line sort of thing,” Federer said. “I was playing really well at times, and then sometimes it was maybe a bit up and down. But assessing the performance overall, I’m very happy. It’s good to be back and playing pain free. My mind’s good. I was in a good place while I was playing, so it felt nice to win at the end.”

Federer, who was using his old, smaller framed racquet in the match, will play the winner of the Tommy Haas/Marcel Granollers on Thursday in the third round.

“I’m going to do more racquet testing when I have, again, some more time after the US Open,” he said. “I was playing for a month with the black one, but it’s a prototype. At the end, I just felt like, you know what, right now I feel like I need to simplify everything and just play with what I know best.”

Earlier in the men’s draw, No. 3 seed David Ferrer held off feisty Ryan Harrison 7-6(5), 3-6, 6-4 in a 2 hour, 42 minute marathon. Harrison remains winless against Top 10 players in his career, now 0-19.

“I think that anyone who watched the match can see the difference in my game, especially being aggressive with my forehand and looking to dictate points,” Harrison told the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Obviously, my backhand I’m still working on developing… You want to have a game where you step up and you can initiate and take the aggressive side of it, and I think that’s where I’m headed.”

Canadian Open finalist Milos Raonic continued his hot summer ousting American wildcard Jack Sock in three sets 3-6, 6-4, 6-3. Other winners were Tommy Haas, Stanislas Wawrinka, Mikhail Youzhny and Grigor Dimitrov who ended Brian Bakers comeback. Canadian Open semifinalist Vasek Pospisil also moved on when his opponent, Gilles Simon, withdrew with a hip injury.

The big story on the day came via the women’s event. Former champion Maria Sharapova made her debut with new coach Jimmy Connors and it didn’t go as planned as the Russian was bounced in her opener by American big match player Sloane Stephens 2-6, 7-6, 6-3.

“It definitely started out rough,” Stephens said. “A set and 0-2, she was killing it. I’m glad I was able to turn it around and start playing good tennis.”

Sharapova had never lost to Stephens until tonight. And rarely does the Russian lost her first match at any tournament.

“Sloane is a really great retriever,” Sharapova said. “She makes you hit a lot of balls, and sometimes you think it’s a really great shot but it keeps coming back.”

Other winners were Victoria Azarenka, Caroline Wozniacki, Jelena Jankovic and Andrea Petkovic who is making a return to tennis. Not so fortunate were Ana Ivanovic, Dominika Cibulkova and Wimbledon semifinalist Kirsten Flipkens.

On tap tomorrow on a big, busy Wednesday are the three men’s Grand slam winners this year – Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray – along with Serena Williams and Juan Martin Del Potro.

You Might Like:
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Has Maria Sharapova Already Fired Jimmy Connors After One Match?
Serena Leads Entire Top 20 at Cincinnati: Preview
Roger Federer Ties Connors For Most Slam Wins, But He Also Wants To Break Jimmy’s 109 Titles Record
Maria Sharapova Has Hired A New Coach, And It’s Jimmy Connors! [Poll]

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74 Comments for Federer Wins, Sloane Upsets Sharapova In Connors Debut; Nadal, Djokovic, Serena Wednesday In Cincinnati

HumbleFed Says:

When the replays of tonight’s match are up, look more closely: Fed was not using his old 90-square-inch BLX Prostaff frame. He was using a larger frame painted with the BLX Prostaff colors.

Xavier Says:

HumbleFed, so wrong! Federer (post-match interview) on what racket he used tonight: “I switched back to my old racquet, I’m going to do more racquet testing after the US Open.”

metan Says:

Good decision from Roger to use his old racket. Good luck for next round!.

Going to have stary stary day on the courts. Hooorei!

Nirmal Kumar Says:

Roger might go slow on first 2 matches to check his back. His main goad might to be come out of these matches without hurting his back. But unfortunately he needs to face Rafa (most likely) in the quarters. It would be a miracle if he can beat Rafa in the kind of form he is in.

I wish we have a Murray vs Rafa and Rafa vs Del Po matches very soon. Not sure about the draw here. But with the kind of form Rafa is in, these would be quite an interesting matches.

Giles Says:

Rafa fans.
“The game’s most arresting player is no one other than Rafael Nadal. When he is in the thick of things and playing his brand of tennis, the game is immeasurably enriched”.
Vamos Champ!!

Nadalista Says:

Thanks @Giles! Sums up our man completely.

“His goals are reasonable, his expectations sensible, his view of himself not inflated in the least.”

Dan Martin Says:

My picks are up for today – http://tennisabides.com – Great slate of matches today.

Michael Says:

It is a good win for Roger especially considering Kohlshreiber to be a tough customer. I do not agree with Nirmal that it will be a miracle for Roger to beat Rafa with this kind of form. I think psychologically speaking, the fast courts at Cincinnati suits Roger’s style and he may find handling Rafa here more comfortable here than in other courts. That being said, Rafa still has the edge if that much anticipated meeting does take place. I am sure Roger will do his very best to make that match competitive.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Michael i agree in that Rafa aint done that well at Cincy over the years,so i would agree that this tourney would favour Roger,although Rafa im sure would be itching to get one over Roger here having never done so before so we will see,tennis is a fickle sport and anything can happen.

metan Says:

I don’t want to count Roger out, who knows he could really beat Rafa. This is Roger prefers surface and Rafa didn’t play his best.
I just hope that it won’t damage Rafa knee by playing more matches here, means trying to maximaze the winning minimize the damaged on his body.
Actually Brando assesment was very good on other thread.

Michael Says:


Anything can happen. Yes certainly. It is this uncertainity which makes the sport interesting. Traditionally Roger has done well in Cincinnati, while Rafa not so well over the years. May be that speed of the court will ignite the spirits of Roger when he faces Rafa. Let us see how it unfolds.

josh Says:

Roger is smart in switching back to his old racquet. The fact of the matter is that Roger just doesn’t have it anymore. He’s no longer a top tier, elite tennis player that he once was. Rafa, Novak, Murray are really the guys to beat that these tournaments. If Roger has to mentally prepare himself to beat Philipp Kolhschreiber, he’s doomed. A second set tie break with this guy? really?

grendel Says:


I don’t agree that Kolhschreiber is a “tough customer.” He is talented, yes. But he gives up very easily. And it was typical of him that having broken Federer, he was broken straight back. They always say that a break is not a break until serve is held. Of course, Federer was stung by the break into sharper play, but Kohls was weak, looked weak, didn’t look as if he seriously cared.

Following on from what SG1 was saying about money, you wonder what impact the high “wages” has on some players. Both Paire and Kohls are ranked in the twenties and have this year earned, so far, about three quarters of a million dollars. That is a very comfortable living indeed. Why exert yourself to earn more?

Ambition? Of course, but there is the business of ever diminishing returns. Kohls would never be top 5 however hard he tried, but he could (possibly) get to top ten. But oh the sweat and agony. Is it worth it? No guarantees. My suspicion is that each player, when he’s been on tour long enough, starts to gauge what is a realistic ranking to go for. Instinctively he realises: so many hours a week will keep him in top 30, an extra x hours top 20, but for top ten maybe an extra 3x hours. Good Grief! Why bother?

Could prize money be so calibrated as to extract maximum effort from a majority of players? Up to a point, I wouldn’t be surprised. But it would be a complicated mathematical exercise. Any thoughts, Harry?

grendel Says:

@Nadalista 6.18
“His goals are reasonable, his expectations sensible, his view of himself not inflated in the least.”

Well, of course, what is reasonable, sensible and not inflated entirely depends on the material at hand. It MAY be reasonable to expect to be #1, it may be unreasonable to aim to be #100.

What is NOT reasonable, in my view, is to take what Nadal SAYS as indicative of what he believes. There is a pithy saying by the British novelist D.H.Lawrence:”Never trust the artist, trust the tale”. In other words, dramatic and psychological truth is to be found in the construction and unweaving of the tale itself. What the artist chooses to say about it afterwards is of little interest and probably self-promoting in some way.

I have no interest in what Nadal SAYS, except possibly for entertainment value. His truth is to be found on the tennis court. Because he is such a great player, this truth is always interesting and sometimes surprising. Such is truth.

skeezer Says:

re: 10:54 post.

Nadalista Says:


That quote is the author’s opinion of Rafa, based on the material he (the author) has at hand. And I share his opinion.

Unlike you, I am interested in what Rafa says (surprise!) and what he does on the tennis court.

I SEE the truth in both.

Nadalista Says:

…….oh btw, I am not in the least surprised you have no interest in what Rafa says. Makes perfect sense.

Anna Says:

Interesting Grendel that you classify Nadal as someone who wouldn’t share the truth about himself. Do you think this is true of every artist? Are they all self-promoting? What do you think Nadal’s tale tells.

Humble Rafa Says:

US Open is adding a roof.

Arrogant One has a new racquet.

Shriekapova realizes she needs a new coach…

Reminds of a 90 year old guy buying Biagra to improve the “quality of life”.

Way too late to the game to make a difference.

the DA Says:

Andy beats Youhzny in straight sets. Weird match. Youhzny didn’t look like the guy who took out Gulbis. Andy was steady – with one careless blip – but he is returning exceptionally well. Benneteau next I believe.

Haas is cruising against Granollers so it looks like it’ll be a juicy Tommy/Roger match tomorrow.

Polo Says:

Wise words from Humble Rafa today.

RZ Says:

I think Haas will give Roger quite a challenge tomorrow. Can’t call the match, though, as both have had recent injury issues.

RZ Says:

I’m wondering if the pressure of having Connors at her match for the first time put too much pressure on Shriekapova. Good win for Sloane!

grendel Says:


All artists self-promoting? Up to a point, yes, though often quite subtly – very difficult to maintain a proper distance from their own creations. If what they’ve done is any good, then the truth, in all its richness, lies in the work. What they have to say about it afterwards is usually defensive in some way. It’s natural to want to protect your “baby”.

Nadalista – of all players, Nadal is the least candid in my experience. Whether he is conscious of duplicity, I don’t know – habit is a blunting instrument. It’s just the way he is. I take no notice now, and concentrate on his tennis, which I find I am more and more able to appreciate. Nadal is not just the property of his fans, you know. He is a truly amazing athlete, there for all of us to appreciate if we allow ourselves to, and I certainly didn’t for too long.

Haas was immaculate against Granollers in the 2nd set. What a player! To watch someone as good as this when he is in the zone is a wonderful thing.

grendel Says:

I saw Gilbert in Harrison’s box, and I am told he was also in Sock’s box. Does he have some official capacity in American tennis?

grendel Says:

Anna – “What do you think Nadal’s tale tells.” Sorry, I missed that. You know what they say about music. if you could say what it was about (and many try), then there would be no point in having the music. Music has its own language, which one may or may not be equipped to appreciate. I think the same is true in sport. The Nadal experience is a powerful and authentic one – the Kohlschreiber experience (say) is rather thin. Clearly, this is not just about skills.

Anna Says:

Grendel – Don’t mean to be a pest, just trying to understand your position. Can you give an example/examples of how Nadal is the least candid of all the players.

nadalista Says:

“….of all players, Nadal is the least candid in my experience………….It’s just the way he is.”

Grendel, I don’t know Rafa, nor his peers, that well. Well, not as well as you appear to. However, am happy to go with the little I know of these players. I have no reason to accuse Rafa, or any of them, of duplicity.

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
― Oscar Wilde

Maybe you should allow yourself to be……a little less cynical where Rafa is concerned? You may be surprised, who knows?

Steve 27 Says:

Genie, you are more than a prety face.

Humble Rafa Says:

I saw Gilbert in Harrison’s box, and I am told he was also in Sock’s box. Does he have some official capacity in American tennis?

Wise a** of American Tennis

grendel Says:

Anna – I am talking only about Nadal’s public pronouncements. What he, or any other tennis great, is like at home, I have no idea and don’t particularly care.

What is notable, to say the least, is the discrepancy between what you see on court and what you see at the presser. Now of course this is the case with any player – they are engaged in quite different functions, after all. The gap is just so much wider with Nadal. Now in a way, you could see this as a compliment, even a big one.

Most players are not especially memorable on the court, and often enough they don’t have much to say for themselves in public, either. But Nadal has a simply huge presence on court.

Why is this? It is, in my view, because this person of exceptional skills bares his soul precisely in the exercise of these skills. It is not a pretty sight. It is ugly, it is infuriating, it is beautiful, it is mesmerising. It is, as it were, life in the raw.

There is some rarely exercised part in each of us – for the most part, when you think about it, deskbound creatures – which responds to this complex and primitive display. For what a potent combination – the undisguised emotion, the outrageous skills, the sustained intensity, the unadorned and blatant ambition. You sneer at the latter and you deceive yourself, because it is there in you, only you do not have the means to express it.

Each of these qualities (in the sense of attributes) may, perhaps, be found in greater abundance in any one player. But Nadal is, as it were, an allrounder, and this gives him his distinctive, I would say unique, flavour.

Now contrast all this with the goody two shoes who presents himself for the attention of the world’s press. It’s a sort of Superman/Clark Kent dichotomy – comic book stuff and not remotely believable. But it partakes of myth, too, and the yearning associated with that.

Nadal exposes himself emotionally in public as almost nobody does, certainly nobody else in tennis. It is an intimate process. You can understand why he feels the need to adopt a quite different persona in his other public role.

However, it is not our job, we who observe, to enter into Nadal’s psychic drama. Of course there are those who want to do that, and why not. But the rest of us, at best, retain a dispassionate eye. That is not always easy, however.

Polo Says:

Wow, Grendel, what a profound analysis delving into the depths of the psychology of Nadal’s dissertations in his press conferences. You may well be correct…or maybe he just does not speak English that well.

Steve 27 Says:


courbon Says:

Novak goes through and tomorrow-battle of the Serves-Raonic versus Isner

Steve 27 Says:

Monaco is the antitesis of his friend Rafa, no mental strength.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Novak will be itching to bounce back,and make a stamp ahead of the USO,he could also make his by winning each of the masters 1000 at least once,although im sure that when push comes to shove he would swap Cincy for another USO,having said that he might even get both.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

^Make history,i meant to say^.

Alex Says:


Very intelligent writing, I must confess, I’m intoxicated by the exuberance of your verbosity.

Your posts are a needle in a haystack these days.
Since most people just don’t know how to express themselves, they revert to simply posting uninformative self serving comments, which are completely lacking any kind of intellectual or honest expression. it’s a by-product of modern society if you ask me.

Anyway, just wanted to say keep posting, don’t let the incomprehensible people get in your way.

There’s plenty here that enjoy your writing.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Alex you just desribed me to a tee,i often know what i want to say,but dont know how to express myself,and most often sound like an idiot,unfortunatly we are not all as eloquent or as clever and knowledgeable with words or phrases as someone like Grendel,but for what its worth we can only do our best anyway,pretty much like im doing now,but for what its worth i too enjoy reading Grendels posts.

courbon Says:

@ Hippy Chic: Novak maybe itching and wants more then anybody those titles but I does not mean anything when it comes to winning those titles.Roland Garros is great example. At the moment , I honestly do not know what to think-to me, he looks like he is going through bad period and I doubt he will win Cincy or US Open.*It would be graet if he can surprise us! ( Novaks fans )

grendel Says:

Ah, my fan – or should we say anti-fan – Polo, keeper of my conscience! Attention is always welcome, never mind the detail!

Alex Says:

@Tennis x Hippy Chic

“i too enjoy reading Grendel’s posts”

Well we both have something in common then.

I wouldn’t beat yourself up about not being as loquacious as Grendel. Grendel can talk freely whilst expressing him/her self in a way which is pleasing to the reader.

Most important is that you’re honest,don’t let emotions or self interest cloud your writing. You’re guilty of none of those, always very friendly. So don’t worry, be happy :).

courbon Says:

@ Grendel:
Great post.I’m afraid I can not express myself so sophisticated as you but I had exactly same thoughts recently.
It was about 2 months ago, when Novak was having a presser and just putted bluntly that he wants to win Rolland Garros.He was straight away attacked by ‘other’ fans of not being modest, arrogant, full of himself.I was puzzled.Surely, that all big players wants that? He was just honest, in my opinion.
When Nadal is asked about upcoming tournamnets (any of them ) he always plays down way too much_-@I’ll be happy if I just play..’Now, obviously, Nadals fans would says:Oh, how Humble he is…beatifull!’ and I’m sure that he is pretty humble guy but its too exagurated his humblness’ in his pressers.He may even not know how to say differently?But surely, he is most determined off all players for each tournament and he always goes for win!His answers are not always honest because off that over pumped humble guy image…
Let me say straight away-I really like the guy ( what I can make out of his interviews ) and his tennis! But his pressers are so opposite of what he really is on the court-raging bull that blows fire!I’m sure that sometimes he would love to show anger or say something less humble-but he can’t.Image is what makes millions to all this guys and maybe they played that role for so long, that they even do not know how to talk differently…who knows? Prisoners of their image.

grendel Says:

X Hippy Chic

You didn’t take on board Margot’s advice to you, you don’t need to apologize for anything. Everyone expresses themselves differently. Have you heard of Elmore Leonard, an American thriller writer. He said:”if it sounds like writing, I rewrite it”. That could have been written for me (and loads of others),I am all too aware. I like to read your posts because you always have something to say about the drama of tennis just as it strikes you.

What d’you think about what courbon said, that Djokovic “looks like he is going through a bad period”? I get that feeling a bit. But you never know when people can turn around – I mean, that’s generally going to happen, but you don’t know when.

James Says:

@courbon, Re humble Nadal, it made LOL when I read that he said “it will be a big challenge for me” to play Raonic in the final in Montreal :D

Anna Says:

Grendel – O.K. So it’s his public pronouncements. What is it he’s saying or not saying that creates the discrepancy in your eyes, and what do you think he should be doing/saying Is it as simple as Courbon implies, he should be angrier, a little less humble? More honest like Novak?

grendel Says:

courbon – absolutely, it’s the extreme oppositions which are so mind boggling. D’you remember Mohammed Ali – now he talked exactly like he fought, if you know what I mean. That’s almost as unusual going the other way. Whether boxing or talking, Ali brought a huge smile to your face.

Of course, part of it is a game which all tennis players seem to indulge in with the view to taking the pressure off themselves. But with Nadal, it’s almost like – there was a film, can’t remember what it was called, Mel Brookes (a little man, b.t.w. important in this context) played the leading role. He was at a railway station, waiting for someone. Suddenly, he caught sight of this large woman, impeccably dressed with a large hat, and she was striding purposefully towards him, arms swinging and apparently set on mayhem. Brookes looked at her at first with alarm, and as she approached, with growing trepidation, until finally he raised his hands in sheer terror to protect his face, squawking “No, No!”. She simply marched straight past him without even having noticed his existence – she had spotted her son or something – and Brookes was uncomfortably aware that he had exposed himself to extreme ridicule should anyone happen to have been watching. So he started to fiddle with his tie with a kind of “huh, that fooled you, eh?” expression.

Well, I sometimes see Nadal’s pressers as his version of fiddling with his tie. Because the lad does lay bare his soul on court, never seen anything quite like it.

grendel Says:

Anna – this is a positive inquisition! Look, I don’t think he should be saying or not saying anything, it’s not my business. I am entitled to observe, though. The discrepancy is obvious. On court, he is full of raging ambition, it’s primitive stuff which is why it’s so compelling (we all like a bit of rough, you know, safely ensconced in our comfortable armchairs)and he plays his best tennis like that, too. At his best, he is full of confidence, and he “knows” he is better than the other man. He has no doubt about it, and he’s damn well going to make sure that nobody else has any doubt about it either by the time he’s finished. (It was amusing to see his reaction when Gulbis claimed he was the better player even though he, Nadal, had won – that was intolerable, and it elicited a sharp and honest response) And then the presser – suddenly, it’s all sweetness and light. That’s his style, it’s not for me to suggest he alters it. But I can comment on it. Free country, eh?

metan Says:

@ Grendel,

Free country, eh! YES
Free Rafa talking, NO

That’s the snip shot of my experience enter the Rafa fan based.

Rafa is not only a tennis player who entertain us on the court. He is adopted son by most of his fans especially all those mothers. Imagine!!!!☺☺

nadalista Says:

“But his pressers are so opposite of what he really is on the court-raging bull that blows fire!”

And that’s what counts as duplicity?

So, what he is on court, is what he REALLY is? How about maybe what he is in his pressers is what he REALLY is, and it’s what he is on court that’s the parody?

Like I said, I don’t know the guy THAT much…….

Oh well, we are all entitled to our opinions no? Even though according to some, some people’s opinion’s are less important than others’. But of course….

Thanks but no thanks, I ain’t jumpin’ on your train, yet.

nadalista Says:

Double break up in the 2nd set……..

Vamos Rafa!

nadalista Says:

Tomorrow…..Baby Fed. And of course, Rafa will not be the favourite, not his favourite surface, no? lol.

Vamos Champ!!

metan Says:

Sweet winning for Rafa.

Legend Says:

“What is notable, to say the least, is the discrepancy between what you see on court and what you see at the presser.”

I dont see why people are discussing too much on this point.
What you say ir 100% correct. Even his mother feels that she sees a different Rafa on court. It is not only you.
What does it lead to ?
What you see in the presser is what his mother sees everywhere outside the tennis court. It is his true behaviour.

What about his oncourt behaviour ?

He is a kid who wants to win everything he plays….its as simple as that…be it tennis, golf or playstation. That is his true behaviour when he is competing an any sport.

I dont know whats all this fuss about. There is nothing to be worried or concerned to confused about it.

We should be worried or concerned to confused when he speaks all good things about his competitors in the presser and on court uses F-words against the same guys.

Thats the true, no.

Legend Says:

“It was about 2 months ago, when Novak was having a presser and just putted bluntly that he wants to win Rolland Garros.He was straight away attacked by ‘other’ fans of not being modest, arrogant, full of himself.”

He was not attacked for saying that he wants to win RG. He was attacked for saying he will beat anyone and win RG.

Rick Says:

Fed’s back wil be hurt again, when he is beaten at Cincy! LOL

Legend Says:

LOL…and also the surface will become slow.

Rick Says:

Where is that silly Brando?

Rick Says:


Sonja Says:

RAFA: The speed of the court is not exactly the same. It’s a little bit slower here than in Montreal.

I thought that Rafa’s forehands actually looked biting tonight and full of speed but is this true to anyone’s knowledge? Who would’ve thought…

Anna Says:

I can see it now. Roger and Rafa square off at the weigh in for the FO. Rafa says “You cain’t win, you to ugly to be a champion. I’m pretty (true, true), I float like a butterfly, sting like a bee”. OMG. A sports journalist dream come true. Drama, drama, drama. I mean these guys meet 3-4 times during the year. How do you follow up trash talk like that. Rafa I think is willing to leave the drama on the courts. Actually, the attitude was much more a young Cassius Clay than Mohammad Ali.

From my perspective Nadal says all he needs to. The more he said when he was young, the greater the opportunity for his words to get lost (or twisted) in translation, and from what I’ve read from Spanish fans he’s a better than average speaker in his native language. I think you would have to understand the culture in which Nadal grew up to have an understanding for his humility. You’d be hard pressed to find any Spaniard willing to pontificate about his own prowess on the court in the way Gulbis enjoys. Finally, Rafa spent so many years as the underdog to Fed, I think that’s where he feels most comfortable. I think he likes the hunt.

Thanks for your patience Grendal. I’m not being facetious when I say I enjoy your posts too. That’s why I grilled you for meaning. And by all means, like Nadal or not, it’s no skin off my nose.

Nativenewyorker Says:

I am a huge Rafa fan, but even I have not devoted the kind of detailed analysis provided by Grendel. Everyone here is free to say what they wish about anyone, however since we cannot really know these players as people I don’t know how meaningful any of this is in the grand scheme of things.

I don’t care if Rafa chooses to speak in clichés in his press conferences and say some of the same things many times. What I do get from Rafa’s press conferences is an honest, insightful analysis of his game. He can dissect his game and say what he did well and what didn’t work. He is always honest in that regard. As far as I am concerned, that’s what counts the most for me.

Rafa doesn’t owe me anything. He can say what he wants in the way he wishes to do so. Maybe he doesn’t want the world knowing his emotions and everything he thinks or feels on the court. Maybe he wants to keep some of himself private. So he resorts to some of the same phrases that we hear from him frequently.

I believe there is real danger in overanalyzing players. Sometimes it’s just not that complicated. If Rafa doesn’t always want to tell us what he is thinking, then that’s his prerogative.

First and foremost, I love Rafa’s tennis. I love how he is willing to make changes and tweak his game and try to be the best he can be. I love how he can come back from shocking defeats and so many injuries and still have a passion for this sport. I love what he is showing us now after the disappointment of Wimbledon and more treatment on the knee. He has the heart and soul of a champion and never quits.

That’s why I love and admire him and will be his fan for as long as he plays this sport.

Anna Says:

Lindsey Davenport said the court is a little bit slower than Montreal and the balls are bouncing up higher. Perfect for Rafa.

Anna Says:

Nice! @ NNY @ 11:13 :)

Sonja Says:

Marion Bartoli has retired. :(

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Thanks Alex and Grendel.

nadalista Says:

@nny 11:13 pm says;

“I believe there is real danger in overanalyzing players. Sometimes it’s just not that complicated.”

Thank you.

’nuff said.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Grendel with regard to Courbons concerns for Novak,well it will be interesting to see how he handles Murray whos now a 2 time GS champion,and at the same time has also a new found confidence when facing Novak too,likewise Rafa seems to have improved his game somewhat and also looks dangerous,so this is all new teritory for Novak,he has lost some of the big matches lately,but hes still been there or there abouts,as i said i wouldnt be surprised to see Novak win a 2nd USO as he has to go down as one of the favorites,although it will be difficult as Murray will be itching to defend the title,and its all new to him aswell,for me i would say its about 50/50 between those two,Rafa,Delpo,Roger are the dark horses IMO.

nadalista Says:

On second thoughts, @nny, your whole post of 11:13 pm deserves a:



Nativenewyorker Says:


I say right back at you regarding your post @11:03 pm. I did not see this comment before I posted mine. I think you made an excellent point about Rafa being concerned about his words getting lost in translation. Also, you pointed out the Spanish culture and how Rafa was brought up. It isn’t considered appropriate to talk yourself up. I also agree that Rafa likes to be the hunter, the underdog rather than the hunted.

I remember something my father used to tell me all the time when I was growing up. He would scold me and say – never show your hand, never show your cards. I didn’t really understand it when I was younger. I always used to just blurt out what I was thinking all the time. But when I got older and was in the business world, that’s when I understood what he was trying to teach me – survival. There are people who do not have your best interests at heart, who are in competition with you and will use whatever they can to gain an advantage. Sometimes it’s not always wise to say exactly what you are thinking.

I don’t know that this has any bearing on why Rafa chooses not to always say what is on his mind. However, this discussion just reminded me of one of the best life lessons my father taught me. I have forgotten his wise words at times and paid the price.

grendel Says:

nadalista says: “Even though according to some, some people’s opinion’s are less important than others’. But of course….”

So far as I’m concerned, on a blog like this -it’s not an academic journal for goodness sake – everyone is equally entitled. Some of us are more wordy than others,true, but from my point of view, this is more about entertainment. No expertise claimed – seriously.

I agree with some of the things said, although from a slightly different perspective. Really, I was pointing to a remarkable (and not just normal) discrepancy between the on court persona and the presser persona. This is undeniable. In the light of what some posters have said, I withdraw the implication of “duplicity”, and am sorry to have caused offence. You see, I really don’t know about Nadal, and if people who do say “the presser Nadal” is genuine, I must accept that. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t indulge in “kidology” – what proportion of his downplaying his chances are due to that and what to modesty I’ll leave to others to decide.

But we all have different sides to us, few people always present the same face to the same people in different groupings, and it is quite normal to be fascinated when we see these different sides displayed by a famous person in such a spectacular fashion.

grendel Says:

X hippy chic

nice summary. I don’t think Nadal is a “dark horse” though. I veer between making him one of the favourites and THE favourite, with a slight inclination towards the latter. Murray and Djokovic obviously right there, and Delpo definitely a dark horse – bit of an unknown quantity, I’m not quite sure why. Federer is going to have to prove himself this week before he can be included in the reckoning, imo.

metan Says:

Looks like Nole will win this match, If Rafa doesn’t change his game.

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