Tuesday, August 25, 2015

"RAISE THE ROOF...PLEASE!"

I am of the opinion that roofs at majors are not a good thing - one of the things that make the majors what they are is the consistency of conditions - including the elements.  Rain and wind have no idea what year it is, and if it was good enough for Jimmy Connors, and Rod Laver and Pancho Gonzales and Bill Tilden, it should be good enough for the modern supplicants to their thrones in tennis heaven.  But the US Open could ill afford to fall behind all three majors in this regard, not to mention the atrocious run of luck that saw so many men's finals pushed to Monday over the last 10 years, so the structure of the roof will make its appearance for the first time in 2015, with the roof itself to follow possibly next year.

So whether it's opened or closed, I think this more than any other condition gives Federer that one fleeting shot at glory that has escaped him for 3 years, and in all likelihood would be the last time he lifts the French Flag on major soil in his storied career...


Read more at The Tennis Column...



Thursday, August 13, 2015

A LITTLE PERSPECTIVE ON NICK KYRIGOS...PLEASE

Don't get me wrong - he's been a right pain in the arse for a while now, and deserves the derision he's on the wrong end of, but this idea that he should be punished for a stupid locker room dig at Wawrkina strikes me as being more than a bit over the top.  And this got me thinking:  what is the worst thing I've ever heard on a tennis court?  Depends on your definition of "the worst", I suppose.  I've been watching tennis for 30+ years, and I've seen a lot, but that may be one of the cattiest things I've heard from player to player - but is it the worst?  I don't know.  You be the judge...

Read more at The Tennis Column...

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

AN OPEN LETTER TO JAMIE HAMPTON

Dear Ms. Hampton:

...as we are certain you have surmised, since the predecessor of tennis was a game of the hands, good hands remain today, the hallmark of what true amateurs (in the Latin sense of the word) truly admire in tennis.  Good hands that can as readily slice a backhand as come over it, flatly drive a forehand up the line, as roll it at an acute angle cross court, as cut it like a judo chop such that it teasingly lands inches from your opponents side of the net.  It is the hands of Riggs, Laver, McEnroe, Federer, Tomic and yes you, Jamie Hampton, that can make game look as it should - like it's still played with the palm of the hand...

Read more at The Tennis Column...

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

CITI OPEN: LAST (BUT NOT LEAST) THOUGHTS

So what did we learn from the 2015 Citi Open?  A hell of a lot.  With one of the strongest fields in the history of the tournament, including two players ranked in the top 5 for the first time since 1987, and one of the best performance from the collective American entrants, there's much to ponder about the world of tennis in general, and specifically preparations for the US Open in September.  Here are some of the thoughts that I came away with.

TOO BIG TO FAIL SUCCEED...

There were so many players standing taller than 6'3 in the tournament this year, Mr. Dell may need to consider raising the doorways...

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2015 CITI OPEN FINAL: NISHIKORI V ISNER - BLOW BY BLOW

...Isner is introduced first to an enormous ovation, as "Bad to the Bone" plays on the stadium speakers. Nishikori also receives a good ovation.  Isner comes out of his chair first, all smiles, bouncing up and down, and shaking hands. Nishikori saunters onto the court in no particular hurry, as is his wont.  Although Nishikori has the better pedigree, this being his 3rd final in DC, Isner appears to be the more relaxed player. I noticed that he humbly moved into the court to retrieve a ball during the warm up, while Nishikori calmly waited for it to be retrieved for him, though the ball was at least 5 feet closer to him than Isner's. 

Nerves?  Tension?  Habit?...

Read more at The Tennis Column

CITI OPEN: CILIC vs NISHIKORI - BLOW BY BLOW

Cilic starts well, with deep penetrating cross court shots off of both wings, pushing Nishikori back and rushing the fastest hands in tennis.  After holding, the break comes off of two forced errors on the backhand wing - a rarity for Nishikori, who is yet to impose himself on any point in the match.  The Cilic serve is as good as it had been this entire tournament, whereas Nishikori's as inconsistent as it's been throughout the week...

Read more at The Tennis Column

Saturday, August 08, 2015

CITI OPEN: READY OR NOT, STEVE JOHNSON'S COMING FOR YOU

....And competing is what the man does best.  Just ask Bernard Tomic, Grigor Dimitrov and Jack Sock - three celebrated and talented opponents this week at the Citi Open whose heads rolled off the block of his guillotine...

Read more at The Tennis Column...

Friday, August 07, 2015

CITI OPEN: KING KEI vs GOLIATH...THE GIANT (KILLING GIANT) IS SLAIN

King Kei slew the Australian Goliath today, in the first quarterfinal of the Citi Open at Rock Creek Park in Washington, DC.  The match pitted the one of the best biggest serves in the game, against one of the best returns in the game.  And like the deciding factor in most matches on grass, where the serve is universally assumed to be the deciding factor, it was the player (ostensibly) bringing the least to the table in this regard, that prevailed...

Read more at The Tennis Column...

CITI OPEN: RETURN OF THE MESOMORPH - SAM GROTH

by MMT

But it seems that we have, in the broad-shouldered, tatoo-sporting, super-serving, Australian behemoth Sam Groth, an answer to the question of whether tennis players could play other sports professionally, and through him, we could start to have an appreciation for the raw athleticism of tennis players...

Read more at The Tennis Column...

CITI OPEN: DAY 5 SUMMARY

Who the hell is Louisa Chirico?  Well, for starters she's a woman who's had two victories over top 50 players in the first two rounds of the Citi Open...


Lleyton Hewitt said good-bye to the tournament he won in 2004...

Speaking of going, Bernard Tomic is going just as he came - shrouded in cynicism...

Speaking of a match that took longer than it should have, Grigor Dimitrov won his 2nd round encounter with Guido Pella 6-4, 6-1 7-6, 6-4.  He should have won the match in less than an hour...

Speaking of right quick, boy was that a quick and terrible journey for Andy Murray, who was eliminated from both the doubles and singles in the first round from the home tournament of his clothing sponsor, Under Armour...

To read more go to The Tennis Column...

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

CITI OPEN: SUDDENLY SAMANTHA

I'm not going to lie - I love almost everything about Sam Stosur, and I have for years.  One look at the second most famous pair of guns in women's tennis, and knowing what she came through 8 years ago to recover from Lyme disease and to come back, like the bionic woman, better-stronger-faster, only the most cynical of cynics would suggest that she is anything but 100% committed to being the best player than she can be.  That may not seem like much if you assume that such commitment is universal, but from the mouths of (big tennis) babes in this piece, in fact, it is as refreshing as it is rare.  On the basis of this commitment alone, the level of admiration for her, from all corners of the sports world, ought to be very high indeed....

To read the rest, go to The Tennis Column...

CITI OPEN: RYAN HARRISON TEMP'RING EXPECTATIONS WITH EXTREME COMMITMENT


CITI OPEN: A COLLEGE EDUCATION...FOR TENNIS PLAYERS?


CITI OPEN: NO REST FOR THE WEARY


CITI OPEN PRESSER IMPRESSIONS