Saturday, March 21, 2009

One Andy Down...


Getty

See the previous post's comments for semifinal highlights. I couldn't bear to watch most of the second one.

I haven't a clue who'll win the final.

12 comments:

Pamela said...

... and another Andy will bite the dust. I'm ok with Murray, but he hasn't been playing that well. If Rafa cleans up his errors and serves decently, it's his match.

Wouter said...

rafa will win because he wants to prove that he lost because he was just injuried in Rotterdam and not because andy is the better player (I think andy is). Rafa is on is best when he wants to show himself

tangerine said...

Andy and Mardy just won the doubles title over Mirnyi/Ram, saving three match points.

Andy wins a masters shield after all!

elagio said...

I think it's absolute crap that FSN isn't broadcasting the FINALS prime time. Will have to find online streaming again. Can't wait the Rafa-Andy match, although the women's match should be fun too now that Ivanovic is returning her form (that killer return on the 2nd server is ridiculous ! :)

Mad Professah said...

I think Murray has a pretty good chance to win, I haven't seen any of Nadal's matches this week so I don't know how well he's playing...

If Murray does win that should give him confidence to help him win a major this year...

oddman said...

elagio, TSN isn't broadcasting it at ALL. At least FSN will put it on sometime. Grrrr.

b said...

The poll thing is hard to answer because I'm sure in Rafa's mind he believes the most that he needs this title more than anyone else, and, in that sense, needs it the most, simply for his peace of mind.....

the announcers just stated something concerning masters shields - sounds like nadal is only 2 titles behind federer - that itself would be even more motivation

Helen W said...

What a blowout! The best player in the world gave a master class to the second best player in the world. Rafa is now 1 Masters Shield behind Federer, and No 16 in number of titles won in the open era -- at the age of 22.

Is there really anyone left who still thinks Rafa is not an all-court player?

Graf_sampras said...

Helen W said...

What a blowout! The best player in the world gave a master class to the second best player in the world. Rafa is now 1 Masters Shield behind Federer, and No 16 in number of titles won in the open era -- at the age of 22.

Is there really anyone left who still thinks Rafa is not an all-court player?

Sun Mar 22, 07:10:00 PM
===============


if they DO -- they only make themselves look like idiots -- as much as any that have through the years been disdainful , or diminishing of nadal because of one or anothere petty litte "inferiority" of nadal's.

I remember writing numerous posts in Bogledance's board for years about Nadal evolving...right in front of everyone while he was being discussed as someone who would "never" this or that, one way or another...EXACTLY towards the player that has now become the MOST COMPLETE out there...and SHOWN it by winning on ALL SURFACES in grand slams , defeating the very best "specialists" in those surfaces.

I am relishing it immensely...for having said for years in various ways:

"JUST WATCH...nadal IS working on being more and more complete and you'll see what he will do".

Graf_sampras said...

HelenW -- did you know that for the last 2 years now..since 2007 actually..and presumably still ongoing ...

NADAL is the ONE player that has the HIGHEST record of BOTH "hold of serve and break of serve?"

players can have "best hold of serve"......

or "break of serve".

nadal outperforms them ALL in BOTH departments for the last nearly 3 years now.

Helen W said...

Graf_Sampras I remember watching Rafa play in his first Wimbledon, and being astonished as he visibly improved his grass game with every match.

Like you, I have loved him from way back, for all those qualities that mark him as an extraordinary person -- his honesty, his humility, his willingness to work (and work, and work), his flair, his sweetness, his good humour, ... and so much more.

People still often disdain him. I am amazed at how few people would see that he and Tio Toni had a long-term plan as to how Rafa would evolve his game -- starting with a solid position on clay, and then working towards grass and then hardcourts. First he was a mere dirt-baller. Even after he (barely) lost in his second Wimby final, he was being dismissed as a grass court player. Head down and ignoring all the nay-sayers, he proceeded to win first Queen's and then Wimby on grass.

Oh but -- he'll never be any good on hard courts. Well, now we know how wrong that is.

And he's still only 22 years old.

Graf_sampras said...

Helen W -- you express what I also felt about all these things concerning rafa's repeated declarations that he wants to improve "every day, every year"...but in the first few years - i guess it is also understandable since he would of course fall flat on his face attempting some things or by playing his "clay court style" everywhere and fail against a number of players...

but all the while he was trying as best he could. THAT"s what also kept me so fascinated and admiring..he didn't mind that he had his failures so long as his long goals were in place...to improve:

he often would say - in response to criticisms or dismissiveness about how he'll "never" be as good in something as this or that player :

"i am practicing my slices, no? i try...i am trying to be more aggressive...i practice to improve my serves..no?..i want to improve".

i mean -- what TEACHER wouldn't LOVE a student like that?...who despite his obvious talents and even spontaneiety in the heat of a match -- seems to never carry himself as if he's god's gift to the world?

one of his recent comments: "Andy Murray is really so talented...he can really be number one soon if he wants...so i have to try harder"..

or on Roger - despite rafael's practically owning roger currently - "roger is the best ...just look at our titles...he has 13 majors i only have 6..there is no comparison".

this, i believe is NOT fake humility...rafa is simply stating things from his point of view, maybe even a "simplistic" one -- or maybe, a wiser one that doesn't like overly complicated explanations -- that roger's accomplishments speak for themselves as the "best" .

rafa has also said:

"I have to fight...because if i don't ...i will lose to anyone, even on Clay".

"when i go out on court...usually i know if i can win or not..but i am always afraid and always think..:'this could be the day I will lose'....so i have to fight my best".

tenniswise -- he is already one of the best ever. right up there with roger, pete, mcenroe, borg, gonzales, laver...whoever....

but the instructive beauty of rafael nadal is that

against ALL WISDOM -- he has proven himself able to surmount them...through talent, athleticism, dedication, a well-balanced idea of where he is in history and in the tour and among players, as a young person who still could use guidance and good advice without giving up who he IS...and does it all with heart, mind and soul .

u know -- one of the BEST sights i have ever seen of ROGER FEDERER...is when roger lost to rafa in the FO - i think , it was in 2007..when despite their terrific battle..as both acknowledged the applause and trophies...when rafa was speaking ...there was this look on roger's face...

i felt, for a moment, it was NOT "resentment", it was NOT a sense of "i am STILL better"..but one of genuine admiration and even PRIDE . check those finals ceremonies - i think it was that FO 07..it left an indelible memory on me - the way roger seemed very "at peace" even during his loss, because he knew then -- this was a great champion that simply couldn't be beat and it was an honor to have played this spaniard in the manner roger had to play.

and even if roger himself, IMO, was also guilty for a time of being rather "dismissive" about rafa -- i feel that rafael GREW in stature in roger's mind - and NOT because of their records only against each other, buit precisely because of what rafa showed in his development to DEFY everyone in tennis...

just like you said:

from being a "mere dirtballer" -- to the winner of majors on 3 surfaces - from "way back behind the baseline" -- to being one of the 2 or 3 BEST net court players today!

and it's all EXACTLY as rafael stated for years:

"I HAVE TO IMPROVE, i MUST improve, a lot a lot a lot...if i am to win wimbledon..every day i wake up thinking of how i can improve today"...

I always said it for years:

RAFAEL is a GIFT to the world of Tennis and Sports like few have been.

for that matter -- i do NOT think Rafael will have it all HIS way. that's not reality.

roger will have HIS day again..and win many more titles and add majors, imo..and is far from "done"...

but rafael has truly ENRICHED the world of tennis - and the "world of roger" even if it had to be at the expense of roger federer...and exemplified -- not JUST for the challengers to roger --b ut TO roger himself


what COMPETING IS on the tennis court. ....


what "HATING TO LOSE" means...even a single point...

and yet after LOSING anyway --what GRACIOUSNESS means that can only come from a genuine champion...who immediately goes BACK to work so "i can improve" ...until one day -- he can do no more ...and he too will fall...

but has LEFT a legacy that can only be called -- in both its victories and defeats ...

GREATNESS.

and it's a greatness that goes beyond "records" - it is something in his CHARACTER..an inner being of being "great".

who would just as easily have been "great" as a farmer, as a shop keeper, as an artisan, as a soccer player...

that's what I've always thought of rafa or what he would become since i first saw him and read about him.

this kid is a national treasure of spain.

and a gift to tennis and sports.