Wednesday, July 22, 2009


A reader writes:

The whole summer Master Series thing just leaves me limp - who cares who wins and who does not[?] Right now, the only things that matter, tennis-wise, are the majors, and even the master series Montreal/Toronto men/women, will not really mean that much in the scheme of things.

Indy this week, here in LA next week - just going through the motions.

Need some new blood with quality talent - Raja and Rafa, or Rafa and Raja if you prefer, cannot be the only thing about the men's game, yet....

And anything beyond the Williams sisters and the clash with the minimal talent called #1 on the women's side is just wasted hot air.

I asked why I was feeling so blasé about tennis right now. I'm trying to find something to argue with this reader about, but I can't.


Pamela said...

I have to say I feel the same. I attributed it to too much tennis and too many "moments." With Rafa losing early, Federer winning Roland Garros, Rafa withdrawing from Wimbledon and Andy R being so close to beating Federer in Wimbledon. It was all too much, and since Rafa is my absolute favorite none of this was good news for me.

I really want one more moment this year, and that would be for Rafa to win the USO. The WTA, is just more of the same. The World #1 is racking up points in Slovenia where there might be one top twenty player. I don't know.

Meh ... I'm looking forward to Montreal only to see how Rafa is playing but other than that right now, there's no excitement or buildup. Curious about Kim Clijsters as well.

I'm still fatigued.

Matthew said...

Really? Oh man, that's not how I feel at all! I'm going into withdrawal from not having been able to see any tennis since the Wimbledon final. I've actually been rewatching some matches that I saved on my DVR from Wimby and the French Open.

I'm thrilled that Indy is going to be on this weekend, and then LA, and some Masters Series Events... then tennis comes to my neck of the woods, and I can see it live! I'm planning to see as much of the New Haven tennis tournament as I can, and then I'm just CAMPING OUT at the U.S. Open!

But anyway, I think there are a ton of great stories coming up. Will Federer still have the drive, now that there isn't that much left to accomplish? Will Nadal bounce back from his loss and time off? Will Roddick?

Will Simon and Del Potro follow up on last year's excellent summer performances? Will Djokovic and Murray step up, slide, or kind of stay where they are?

How about Haas and Soderling? Are they the real deal?

I'm pumped about the summer.

rabbit said...

By the way, I hate how people keep saying Roger won't play well because he doesn't have anything more to prove. But does anyone play tennis for 10+ years just to prove that he/she can play? I think that's an awfully negative way of looking at things. This isn't just about Roger, but also about, say, Andy R. and Rafa. They have done enough in their careers to not have to be out there, risking injuries, just to prove they can. They do it because they love showing their talents in pressure situations, love the feeling of winning, love the feeling of being out there in front of a cheering crowd. Breaking records is a consequence, not a reason, for good tennis.

Yes, Roger may (hopefully not!!) have a let-down in the next couple of tournaments, but I'd think it would be because of adjustments to the baby's arrival. But once there is some routine, I think we can fully expect Roger to be engaged in high-flying tennis again :)

pompelmo said...

This is the typical dead season. You start with Australian Open, tension builds up going through to Roland Garros, and Wimbledon comes right after that. Because of too much tennis in a short period of time and always boring Wimbledon, after Wimbledon you even question whether you like the sport or not. But believe me, it is just because of Wimbledon. A bunch of fast, cheap and easy points are not stimulating. There is no drama there.

AO in Feb-March, Wimby in July-August, USO in late September would be a better scheduling.

Michael said...

Well you could argue that ... umm.... Or maybe just mention ... well... Hmmph. I too feel blasé about the tournaments after Wimbledon.

As everyone has said, there has just been so much going on lately that's HUGE, how can these smaller tournaments (even Masters 1000) compete?

It's just a big year, and it's the majors where that happens. Even if it's still only Federer and Nadal winning them.

I hope there are some stories in the smaller tournaments, some names climbing into the spotlight. But if it's just one or two top tenners beating folks in the 30s and below, well, that's not going to do it.

Good wins for Rajeev Ram and Chardy, but it just doesn't compare to the other storylines of this year. Even if Murray gets to be ranked #2, which is plausible, that's not all that scintillating.

It was nice to see Giles Simon and Del Potro gain ground in these tournaments last year, but it's not huge. But that's it: nice and good, not amazing and breathtaking.

MMT said...

rabbid said: "I hate how people keep saying Roger won't play well because he doesn't have anything more to prove."

I guess I have to plead mea culpa for pushing that out as a question with my piece on the "The Privilege of Pressure". I also hope that is not the case, but great champions before Federer have risen and fallen under similar circumstances to his, so I thought it was a fair question.

I hope both he and Nadal come back full force and give us some memorable matches as well, because the quality of tennis when they play is typically very high.

I'm also in withdrawal, trolling youtube for clips of great encounters in the past, while live tennis is about as interesting as a bag of dirt these days. The whole spectacle of the Indianapolis tournament hanging Blake out to dry over his non-appearance was a kind of sad commentary that they were reduced to trying to wrestle(sp?) him into the appearing and couldn't even do THAT!

There is an upside and a downside to having big stars in tennis - when they're on they're game and competitive it can do wonders for interest in the game. But when they're absent, the void is very difficult to fill with what they leave behind.

Karen said...

Have you guys ever gone to some of these players' websites and read some of the postings there. Oh my goodness, these people are obsessed. They actually have a thread over at Roger's website, waiting on the baby to be born. This is ridiculous.

Beth said...

Yes, I feel burned out for some reason. Past few weeks or so I could almost care less. MMT, you nailed it all and I totally agree. Exactly how I feel.

wouter said...

Maybe. The season started of so well, with the AO-final, i was pumped up, the battle for the titles and grand slams could begin (again). But nadal was out, djoko and murray didn't made the expectations.
Sort of an anti-climax. Rod his play was beautifull, but also that match wasn't how i expected it would.
But i'm sure if rafa, raja, djoko, murray and roddick (im speaking of him again, great feeling) play well in the pre-usopen tournaments.
It will be a very nice climax of the season....

lynney62 said...

I'm so bored with tennis right now, and most sports in general, I'm actually watching NASA TV and all the activity at the Space Station.....Jeez....I need help!
Hoping Montreal and Cinci will get me back in the game!

Helen W said...

Ah, but Beth -- we have Le Tour to keep ourselves amused, no? And what did you think of Contador's final attack yesterday, which resulted in his teammate being dropped from the leaders?

Anyway, bravo to him for winning the Individual tt today -- he really is the best all-round rider there this year imho.

Karen said...

OT, I never like to judge how other women raise their children but something struck me a moment ago while I am watching a team tennis match with Andre Agassi. They are interviewing Lindsay Davenport and from the commentary it would seem as if at the time this particular match was played, she had only given birth to her daughter 3 weeks ago. Lindsay said in the booth that Steffi Graf had left to put the tournament as her children wanted to sleep. When asked where her children were, they were at home. I dont know there is just something inherently wrong about seeing a mother with a 2 year old, and a 3 week old leaving the children to attend a tennis match. Am I too old fashioned? Where I am from when I had my son, I was told that I could not go outside for 6 weeks, or even if I go out, not in the evenings when it was cold. I know times have changed but the difference with both mothers just seemed strange to me. And she has already started playing tennis again. Someone needs to tell her that she will never win another major, or any tournament of significance ever again.