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The Lonely Coach (WCC, Day 12) 07/04/2009 - 8:26 AM

 85421593

by Pete Bodo

Mornin', everyone, and a fine one it is again.

A few days ago, I had an interesting conversation with Sven Groeneveld, who heads up the novel and productive Adidas group coaching effort. Sven has coached an impressive list of outstanding players, including Mary Pierce, Michael Stich, Nathalie Dechy, Greg Rusedski, Fernando Verdasco and, most recently,  Ana Ivanovic. BTW, Ana is back with the Adidas program after a patchy experience with Craig Kardon (formerly Martina Navratilova's coach). And Darren Cahill has joined Gil Reyes, that other member of team Agassi, on the Adidas coaching roster. Those are Cahill, Reyes and Groeneveld (L to R) in this photo.

It turns out that Sven and our mutual friend, tennis insider Lisa Sommermeier, had both read the on-again, off-again series I started on coaching (it makes me think I ought to continue it), in which I wondered why tennis coaches - who run the gamut from manipulative opportunists with precious little to offer  to distinguished Grand Slam enablers - didn't have some kind of official organization, or registry. I can think of a dozen ways in which an official organization, like the players, tournaments, umpires, and even press already has (and let's not forget that strong organization of teaching pros, the USPTR), would be a welcome addition to the growing infrastructure of our sport.

It turns out that Sven had been thinking along the same lines, and he already has an interactive website that functions as a virtual employment agency for coaches. It's called Orangecoach.com. The big news Sven wanted to share with me is that this is merely Stage 1 of a 2 stage effort - the second part will consist of creating a formal organization or registry of coaches. It will not only help coaches and players find each other, but also give coaches, those lone operators, an organization that will set guidelines, create opportunities (like sponsorship deals), and give coaches the backing of the same kind of official, institutional voice that others can fall back on in times of need.

To pick a simple example, right now any charge of inappropriate behavior of any kind against a coach is simply a "he said, she/he said" affair, and who would want to be the coach in that scenario - especially if it were one of the all too common partnerships of a young female player and an older male coach?  Moreover, the WTA commitment to on-court coaching means that coaches could potentially supplement their income with sponsorship deals on a less haphazard basis. "I was never for the on-court coaching experiment," Sven told me. "But it's here and there's no reason not to take advantage of it."

Largely, though, Sven sees "job security" as the most critical issue for coaches. He points out that coaches come and go randomly, usually at the mercy of the players for whom they work. When that player retires, or moves on, the coach is back at Square One. He or she has no real way beyond networking and personal salesmanship of staying in the game. "Not too many coaches stay in the game for more than five years," Sven said. "I want to try to find a way to enable legitimate coaches to stay in the game. For example, if the player I've coached for three years decides to move on, right now I don't even have access to my workplace - the tournaments. If we had a certification process, the members of our registry could stay in the game and enjoy the same benefits as other tennis professionals."

A registry would also enable the organization to police its membership and even institutionalize the background checks that are a reasonable burden. Sven objected to the heavy-handed way the official game instituted its intrusive background checks in a panicked response to abuse and gambling scandals, but has no problem with the basic concept. "It would be part of a general certification process that would take place in stages," Sven said. "People would know what the system expects and get comfortable with it."

Sven also noted that academies, representation firms, and even manufacturers (like Adidas) have increasingly close ties to coaches, and use them in increasingly inventive and diverse wasy (as scouts, for example). The coaches need to be better informed on everything from the available opportunities to the general task-by-task pay scale.

I think this plan will work, partly because sponsors already have greater grasp of inventive ways to use coaches. The coaches are not only vital to the players on-court success, they're an increasingly significant go-between with other wings of the game, like the media. And a coach is a pipeline to a player. I've learned over time that if you have a good relationship with a player's coach, you're more likely to develop the same with a player.

I hope Sven pulls this off.


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Posted by Mike 07/04/2009 at 05:41 PM

Sorry ... there are deservedly a number of variables that have to be taken into consideration in regards to the point system. You can't just stop by events you feel like attending and perform the way you feel like performing.

Why not just let Serena play in the slams, if that's the case?

The reason she is not #1 is that she did not participate, place, and win, consistently, the whole year long.

IMHO ... she's always come across like a smacked a**. Big sister should take her behind the Williams woodshed and teach her a thing or two about manners and professionalism.

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 05:42 PM

I wouldn't particularly defend Serena for her remarks, BTW - my favourite of the sisters as a personality has always been Venus. But I I had to choose one of them to play for my life, it would be Serena, and I get the sense that her offcourt and oncourt personalities are very much connected in terms of ultracompetitiveness (wasn't it Richard Williams who said that Serena is meaner?). Some of the time I think that overflows into what Serena says in her pressers.

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 05:45 PM

Andrew -

I'll give you that. I wish he would come to see her play. I think its incredibly sad that he doesn't.

Maybe I could tell him that when I see him in a week :) I have DC tickets.

Apperantly Youz landed last week, with his wife, and went to the death sea for a little holiday. Hopefully that shows his level of commitment.

As for Sampras, I really thought he'd show up, I wonder who would do the presenting now.

Posted by VE 07/04/2009 at 05:46 PM

Why do we seem to have so much love for gracious losers? To the point that we almost except someone who wins to be sheepish about it and virtually apologize for being the better player?

Serena's the best player in the world, but she's ranked No. 2 on the computer. The computer is fair and accurate, Dinara deserves to be No. 1 the same way Serena deserves to be No. 2. The criteria to be No. 1 are expressly laid out and all the women know how to get there. The best player wins when it counts. The No. 1 player best meets the criteria laid out for being No. 1 that's 52 weeks of consistency.

If Roger Federer returns to No. 1 on Monday, he will deserve it based on the criteria, in that case however, I'd feel either he or Nadal would be unquestionaby worthy.

Posted by Mike 07/04/2009 at 05:47 PM

Just look at the pressers ... one does all she can to support the WTA ... and one makes a mockery of it. Being sisters is where the similarity ends, apparently.

Posted by VE 07/04/2009 at 05:48 PM

rudy3, what's vb.com?

Posted by Mike 07/04/2009 at 05:48 PM

If you're honestly good ... you don't need a bullhorn to announce it. It's easy to figure out.

Posted by sally 07/04/2009 at 05:48 PM

pete wouldn't present the trophy anyway, the duke of kent always presents it , no way would wimbledon change that.

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 05:50 PM

Did Youzhny get married? When?

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 05:53 PM

Well. That what the report I read said - maybe the reporter didn't know whether she was a wife or a GF. (I don't know either).

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 05:53 PM

VE: vb.com would be vamosbrigade. An unofficial fan site for Rafael Nadal.

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 05:56 PM

VB is Rafa's mothership :)

Posted by imjimmy 07/04/2009 at 06:01 PM

""I just think that he doesn't really want to do it, but I bet Roger understands ""

Sampras wasn't given a formal invitation to attend by the AELTC.
So he has no personal or professional commitments to fly across the Atlantic on a short notice.

Emerson was not at Wimbledon when Pete broke his record, there is absolutely no reason for Pete to be at Wimbledon on Sunday. A member of the Royal family presents the trophy. It has always been that way and it will not change for Federer.

If Pete showed up, it would just be to sit in the stands. He is not the type of person that would want to take the spotlight away from Federer anyway. It's Fed's moment, there is no reason for him to share it with anyone. Pete does NOT need to be there. Moreover he will be live on the phone via NBC to congratulate Fed.

BTW..I know it's hard to believe these days, but seriously, the world doesn't revolve around Federer.

Posted by imjimmy 07/04/2009 at 06:04 PM

lira vega: Here's the link for the archived matches again -

http://www.net5.nl/web/show/id=488556/langid=43

Rudy3: Thanks for the info

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 06:06 PM

"BTW..I know it's hard to believe these days, but seriously, the world doesn't revolve around Federer."

Are you sure? Yesterday when I was watching Sarah Palin resign I'm sure one of the reasons was because Roger Federer was about to win Wimbledon and break Pete Sampras' record.
Sounds far fetched, I know, but it makes as much sense as everything else she said :)

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 06:07 PM

imjimmy -

Um, okay. You can't take the venom down a notch.

Pete SAID he'd want to be there in the past (June last year), that's why I'm even talking about it.

""There is a burning desire in Roger to break my record, and when he does it I would like to be there," Sampras said Thursday. "I said to Roger, 'Just make sure it's in New York or London. Australia is a long way to go. [But] if it worked out like that, I would fly there.'

"I would just let him enjoy it as his moment but [I would want to be there] just to respect the record and what he was able to do and to just say, 'Congratulations."

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 06:08 PM

Should have been 'can' - not 'can't'.

Posted by sally 07/04/2009 at 06:09 PM

the world doesn't revolve around sampras either, but you wouldn't know it from being on here.

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 06:10 PM

And BTW, I said I totally understand why Pete isn't going, I just don't believe it's due to the flight.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:12 PM

Congrats to the Williams girls in the doubles,though I am proud that our Aussie team got through.

My new little kitten unbeknowns to be pulled out the cord on my laptop,I was going to watch the dubs match I thought I was having trouble again so I gave up.

Remus you are a little devil at times,but I still love you to death lol!

Good Morning Everyone.

Posted by sally 07/04/2009 at 06:12 PM

i can't wait for roger to get 15, ,maybe then we can stop talking about pete. no french, no GOAT.

Posted by sally 07/04/2009 at 06:13 PM

not even a french finalist.

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:14 PM

I'm not sure how Pete's relationship with the SW19 brass ended...There was the matter of being scheduled to play Bastl on the graveyard. I think he was rightly outraged.

Anyways, if he shows up, it'll be because of his friendship with Fed. Not anything else. I don't have too many friends who I'd fly across the Atlantic to see for a couple of hours.

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 06:16 PM

Imjimmy,
BTW..I know it's hard to believe these days, but seriously, the world doesn't revolve around Federer"
LOL

Btw, I am impressed by your knowledge of anything Sampras ;)

Posted by Shannon 07/04/2009 at 06:18 PM

Serena is a great champion on court but off court she's a whole different story. She needs to drop the "i'm so much better than everyone else therefore I don't need to compete in every mandatory tournament" act. She needs to stop complaining about every little thing. She's a diva who is in dire need of some common sense.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:18 PM

So the great man isnt coming to see if his title gets passed?

Oh well I dont think Roger will be too upset.

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 06:19 PM

When Pete makes his return to Wimbledon it should be based on the fact that he is being honored as the 7 time Champion, not because Roger is in line to win his 6th.


Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:20 PM

Andrew,

"""
That said, I'm pretty old fashioned. I expect top 10 tennis players to be able to serve, return, hit ground strokes, volleys, overheads, drop shots, touch shots, passes and so on with skill. If it turns out that you can be the no 1 player in the world without being able to do these things well in big matches consistently, that's not necessarily a knock on a player, but it says something about the era in which he or she plays.
"""

Word! Consistency is the key...at least 5 or 10 shots before an outrageous flub, and definitely no more than 4 DFs in 2 sets.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:21 PM

My hubby of course is 100% behind Andy Roddick

He is still at sea wont becoming home till next week,which is good for me.

I couldnt stand the pain quite frankly if Roger wins.

My hubby isnt a fan of Rogers full stop.

I intend going out to buy ear muffs lol!

Posted by Jake 07/04/2009 at 06:21 PM

"Why do we seem to have so much love for gracious losers?"

Because it is moral, because jerks suck and will ruin the world if we held them up as heroes or role models. That's why, imho.

"To the point that we almost except someone who wins to be sheepish about it and virtually apologize for being the better player?"

Well, graciousness has its place - ask any competitive sportsperson. One can gloat in their victory without being a jerk about it.

I think I lip-synched RAndy saying "I'm sorry" to MAndy at the net handshake yesterday.

Why would RAndy apologize for fairly beating MAndy? Because of the circumstances - a local hero with high expectations defeated in front of a home crowd. Only a jerk would ignore such a momentous circumstance, and put down the vanquished.

Which is why I (and many here on this blog) was disappointed that Serena essentially mocked Dinara Safina's ranking as world #1.

BTW, VE, nothing personal against you, ok? You probably didn't mean it to came across as supporting jerks, but i felt a need to comment.

Posted by Joan 07/04/2009 at 06:21 PM

Serena's shirt in her presser was so distastful, she has absolutely no class. Her and Venus are so different, I swear they must have been raised by two different totally different people. People are so intimidated by Serena, someone needs to speak up. The WTA and players must feel threatened or something by her because no one has said anything! I really hope Dinara defends herself, she has a fiesty attitude and I'd love to hear her diss Serena. Lord knows she deserves it.

Posted by Kim 07/04/2009 at 06:22 PM

"i can't wait for roger to get 15, ,maybe then we can stop talking about pete. no french, no GOAT."

Amen.

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:23 PM

LOL, AM. You should invite hubby for Sampras hour at TW. He'll be right at home.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:27 PM

Pspace There would not be enough pages or post left if my hubby got started lol!

Especially when he relives the moments of seeing Pete play live

He takes the Bible to sea with him

he has major problems full stop lol!

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:31 PM

AM, Maybe you should tell him about Fed and Pete's friendship...I mean after all if Sampras likes the guy, he can't be that big an ass, can he? Just to ease the pain when Fed gets to 15.

Posted by Jake 07/04/2009 at 06:32 PM

An aside, Rosangel (or any other moderators in the house), since no live tennis is on-going, may i commiserate on the following...?

NFL Quarterback Steve McNair is shot (in the head) and killed in downtown Nashville, Tennessee. Only 37. Sad, sad, sad, incident, and nobody knows who did this. A female was found with him - also shot dead.

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 06:32 PM

I'm sure that Sampras proponents will be able to come up with some decent arguments to sustain his claim to GOAT candidacy.

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 06:33 PM

Since I like most players, I have always felt guilty for my almost irrational dislike of Pete. It's a bit of a consolation to know I'm not alone ;-)

I am really hoping for an exciting match tomorrow. I personally don't think there's a chance Roddick beats Fed but it would be great if he could at least win a set.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:35 PM

Actually when hubby was younger I mean around 30 he looked a bit like Pete Sampras,They both are around the same height and build have dark hair

The difference being Pete Sampras has a few more dollar than my Peter.Drats look at all the extra shoes I could buy lol!

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 06:35 PM

Jake: yes, some non-tennis conversation is OK here now.

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:35 PM

Jake, oh no! That's terrible news. He was such a nice personality. RIP.

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 06:38 PM

This pic is hilarious
http://tinyurl.com/nvkoo4

Venus has one of the best post win smiles
http://tinyurl.com/lqgoqd

You'll win something some day, Sammy
http://tinyurl.com/l2t4sa

Junior girls
http://tinyurl.com/lq495t
I didn't realize the Thai kid was 18. About time she started playing in the senior tour.

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 06:38 PM

Regarding Fed and "undisputed" GOAT...jajaja...thank god for Rafa. Unless he reverses that 7-13 H2H and 2-5 (in slam finals), 2-6 (in GS), there ain't no universal coronation.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:38 PM

Tfactor Well my hubby feels the same about Roger lol!

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:41 PM

Sorry even if Roger wins tomorrow in my mind he isnt the Goat He joins Agassi who by the way won a gold medal in singles at the olympics something Roger hasnt done.

Laver to me and also my hubby far surpasses them both.

Posted by Kim 07/04/2009 at 06:42 PM

I enjoyed not seeing Rafa at Wimbledon, it was refreshing.

Posted by lira vega 07/04/2009 at 06:42 PM

Thanks a mil, imjimmy!
Yay, sexy Steps on my screen, I only got to see last set of his match against Ferru, got some catching up to do...Too bad they don't have any juniors matches there, though :(

Posted by Jake 07/04/2009 at 06:42 PM

Thanks, Rosangel.

And Pspace, yes, Steve McNair was a gentleman and a warrior in every sense of the word. A complete class-act.

Very sad day, indeed, and the investigation is on-going. He retired from the NFL last year after spending his last 2 season with the Baltimore Ravens.

Most of his career (13 seasons) was with the Tennessee Titans, though, and he had deep roots there - where he was incidentally murdered today.

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 06:42 PM

AM,
I was getting that from your posts ;])
I think I was always jealous of his serve, that's it!

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 06:43 PM

Or maybe I should say envious (English is not my native language)

Posted by lois 07/04/2009 at 06:45 PM

rafadoc,
Hopely Andy R. will keep and play his heart out, I want him at least to feel good with hisself. He has been the best player at Wibmledon so far. poor Andy M. I felt so srry for him with all the pressure of a country on his shoulders. I did not think he would fare-out, that was a lot of presure to much to handle-even his Granmother was saying he better win, so there goes that. Rafa has pulled out of the Davis Cup for now, maybe he can get back later. Right now it makes more sense to defend the two titles he has now and not just give-up 2000 points.
WISH YOU EVERYTHING GOOD RODDICK, MAYBE YOUR TIME IS NOW.

Posted by Codge 07/04/2009 at 06:45 PM

Serena should embrace the words "no comment".

I don't find anything wrong w/ her remarks in general, she has the right to speak her mind, but it makes for a less contentious locker room.

Press is just fishing for a s headline, and she's been in the business long enough to know how to navigate those very treacherous waters.

Too much emphasis placed on the #1 ranking anyway. I'd much rather have a sensible schedule and win GSs.

Regarding Pete coming to Wimby, I'm glad that's not happening now.
With Roddick being the opponent that would telegraph poorly.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:46 PM

Tfactor I would love to have Petes second serve any day lol!

Posted by Jake 07/04/2009 at 06:48 PM

Re: Roger as GOAT, and a 7-13 losing record against Rafa.

All I can say is: leave Rafa alone! Let the dude heal, ppl! When he returns to the tour fit, Roger may have a thing or two to say about that 7-13 record. ;-)

With or without Rafa, Roger's place in the record books are set, and he is about to write a whole new chapter - health-permitting, knock on wood!

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 06:49 PM

Who knew this guy was into tennis? He came with his wife to watch the Bryans. I'm not sure NBC showed/mentioned him.
http://tinyurl.com/lmum4r

RUPs
http://tinyurl.com/ljl5ee

Champs
http://tinyurl.com/m86ckq

Thanks for the archive link, imjimmy. That's a gold mine.

Posted by imjimmy 07/04/2009 at 06:50 PM

""When Pete makes his return to Wimbledon it should be based on the fact that he is being honored as the 7 time Champion, not because Roger is in line to win his 6th. ""

Never gonna happen. AELTC won't do so, esp when they had the temerity to schedule a 7 time champ on the graveyard court in '02 *shakes fist angrily*

To be fair Fed and Sampras are very good friends.

[ http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/wimbledon09/columns/story?columnist=garber_greg&id=4304557 ]

I think the All England Club should formally invite Pete just as they have done for Borg and Laver. Otherwise I see no pt in him flying all the way just to sit in the stands, since he won't be presenting the trophy anyway. And please let's respect the personal life of a great champion. Don't dismiss the argument merely by saying he doesn't want to do it.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 06:52 PM

I would like to say Miss Vee is a class act both on and off the court.

I could tell by her expression after she lost she was shell shocked,but to her credit she held her head up high.

She was totally out played by Serena.Serena had a great game plan and executed to the full.Well done Serena you deserved the title.

Posted by Carol 07/04/2009 at 06:55 PM

I would enjoy seeing Roddick winning, it would be very refreshing

Posted by lois 07/04/2009 at 06:58 PM

Last year when Venus won not only wAs she gracious but showed her sister love, DO NOT exspect that from Serena because they are cut from 2 different cloths.
Venus, from her Mother-quite, kind and want the best for both girls and claps for anyone they are playing.
Serena, from her Father- loud, bold (brings his new wife to sit by his old wife,the mother of his kids, leaves when they are not playing well, claps only for his girls and stands in front of people in the back.
But they Love them both ,I guess he must have something GOOD ABOUT HIM.

Posted by Blaire 07/04/2009 at 07:00 PM

I have a bad feeling Roger's going to crush Andy in strait sets tomorrow....but I really hope Andy proves me wrong! I'd love to see an all American sweep.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:04 PM

Could someone tell me when the Monteral Masters h/court tournament starts please?

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 07:06 PM

Guy in the pink shirt
http://tinyurl.com/msesbn

Who on earth is entertainer Chico?

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 07:08 PM

AM
Montreal starts on the 10th of August

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 07:09 PM

I remember when Pete won #13 at Wimbledon, his parents were there, but they refused to sit in the player's box, because they did not want to be on tv. Maybe Pete has some of that in him as well. He doesn't want to be on tv just to be oogled. its not his style.

He has said that he would like to take his children to Wimbledon some day, because it was such an important place to him. So my point was that i think Pete will return to Wimbledon when the time is right for him. Not because is right for Roger Federer.

Wimbledon tends to have parades of Champions when they have celebrations. its likely he would return for something like that. Although he didn't go to NY when they did that at the Open. He had to be talked into the retirement ceremony at the Open several years ago. And he cried through the whole thing.

Much like his induction in the Hall of Fame. Maybe all that kind of stuff gets to him.

I know this, it will be a great day when Pete Sampras returns to Wimbledon.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:10 PM

Blaire Well you never know.I have watched Andy through his matches at Wimby so far,I have been impressed.Saw his match against Tomas and then the one with Lleyton.

His match against Murray was fantastic.I have never seen him hit his gound shots so well off the ground also his volley play hey?

He took it to Andy and was the agressor from the start.

Great play and deserves his chance in the final.

May I add regardless that Roger has a winning margin over him.

This is a New Day.

I loved it when Andy said he never though he get a chance to play in a Wimby final again.

Hey Andy well you have your chance take it.

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 07:11 PM

"I would enjoy seeing Roddick winning, it would be very refreshing"

High five! i can get behind that.

Ridin' the Roddibago!!!!!!!!! Vamos Andy, make the surprise!!!!!!!

Posted by Arun 07/04/2009 at 07:11 PM

I found this video fascinating. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSKncevxLHM&fmt=18

In fact all the parts had some nice tennis and typically funny outrage by some of our faves.. Find the rest of the parts in the related videos.

Posted by Carol 07/04/2009 at 07:13 PM

If Roddick plays with a strong mentality and so good as he played against Murray, he can win, although Federer knows perfectly well how to respond his service

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 07:14 PM

"Guy in the pink shirt"

have mercy?!?!? don't let Nike see that, lest that be Rafa's AO defense costume.

who is that guy, and who let him in Wimbledon dressed like that?

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 07:14 PM

lois: as far as Richard goes, he also has children from his marriage pre-Oracene. We never hear them mentioned. Some years back I recall reading that there's not much contact, if any.

He comes across to me as a bit of a self-invented character - definitely has been caught out in some mythologizing about his own past.

He'd be a great subject for a bit of investigative journalism.

Posted by lira vega 07/04/2009 at 07:16 PM

Hee, I was wondering the same thing, greenhopper, guy was hilarious..From Wiki:

"Chico's brother-in-law is 2009 Wimbledon Men's Doubles Champion Nenad Zimonjic"

Did you catch my post on Mario the other day? I had to post it on a already dead thread, so as not to go OT during semis

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:17 PM

Please I am soo over the colour Pink

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 07:18 PM

ah, thanks, lira vega. Why wasn't he sitting with Mina and the kids then? This guy was all pumped when they won.

I'll go and look in the prev. CC. Thanks.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:19 PM

Rosangel Do you think Rafa at this stage has a chance to defend his title at Monteral at all.

Was reading he has been doing strength work probably for the knee situation.

Posted by rafadoc 07/04/2009 at 07:21 PM

lois: Agree-just play your heart out and know you did your best.

Kim: What a post. Can tell you put a lot of thought into that. *rolls eyes*

rudy3: lol at Nike and the pink shirt. Good Gosh-is that Hott Sauce in a few years? ;-)

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 07:22 PM

Here's the Wiki entry. Jajaja:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chico_Slimani

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 07:24 PM

For Fed-KADs:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/tennis/article6637258.ece

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 07:26 PM

oh. brother-in-law could also mean, Chico married Nenad's sister.

I'm glad Mario is not pushing his recovery. It'll be sad if he drops out of the top 100, but kid sure knows to make a come back, as long as he's healthy enough. Thanks again.

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 07:26 PM

no way rafadoc, that's Nando last weekend :)

Arun, thanks for the video...and I give you permission to show that TO Nike. I would love to see a return of the Stefan Edberg shorts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rafa in Stefan Edberg shorts. have mercy!

Posted by Pspace 07/04/2009 at 07:29 PM

Despite the name of the file, this contains a Fed-Roddick matchup analysis. Meh. Only 8.5/10 for Fed's bh....on grass? Not including the return?

http://extras.timesonline.co.uk/sport/federervmurraypatcash.pdf

Posted by rafadoc 07/04/2009 at 07:29 PM

lol Rudy3

YES Please re: Rafa in Edberg shorts.

Posted by avid sports fan aka "Sigh-Rena" 07/04/2009 at 07:30 PM

Hello good people! back from the dentist (also decided to go shopping ;-)

So it was three for three for me yay! I missed Rafa being able to compete on the men's side since he's my fave besides James Blake. Anyways today really was a good day and I am happy about it.

"Serena should embrace the words "no comment".

I don't find anything wrong w/ her remarks in general, she has the right to speak her mind, but it makes for a less contentious locker room.
Press is just fishing for a headline, and she's been in the business long enough to know how to navigate those very treacherous waters.
Too much emphasis placed on the #1 ranking anyway. I'd much rather have a sensible schedule and win GSs."

Codge - I couldn't have said it better. I mean all Serena has to say in response to these contentious topics is "I have no comment for that question"

While I cannot say what Serena's intention was wrt the comment, there is not way it will not come across as a dig to Dinara and that could have been avoided.

Also I have said it before that sometimes I feel there was some sort of pressure on Serena to "salvage" the #1 ranking at KB. Prior to that time she just took it as an additional bonus to winning. And this is just a borderline case and I wish the press would just let the matter be. And really had Serena not had a such a colossal disaster of the clay season we may not even have been having this discussion. In fairness to her sinc ethe beginning of this year prior to the clay season, even if she did not win anything othe rthan AO, she was the best player (ranking point wise of the AO and North America spring HC season) doing SF or better in all tournaments entered for.

Also I think it is unnecessary to indirectly and subtly *take a dig* at fans of Serena as one or two posters have done here saying they cannot understand how anyone can be her fan. This is not the first time.

Posted by avid sports fan aka "Sigh-Rena" 07/04/2009 at 07:31 PM

greenhopper - Thanks for all the winners and RUP pics :)

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 07:35 PM

Aussiemarg: I don't know any more than what has already been posted here, by rudy3 on the page before this one. It's similar to what I've seen in one Spanish article that someone sent me.

I can guess why there's some talk about his maybe playing a clay event before Montreal (maybe Stuttgart or Hamburg - that's my thought, anyway). That would be because he's been out of competition for a few weeks. He might like to gain some confidence and rhythm before defending a big title.

I'm not counting on anything, timing-wise - the body can't be commanded to do what it's owner wants; healing will take however long it takes. I think it would be a mistake to return to the tour before he's ready. Bad for the knees, bad for self-confidence.

If he's to be a factor at the US Open you'd think he would need to play a tournament or two beforehand, and see if he can at least go deep.

This has been a weird Wimbledon for me without him playing - in that I haven't got too involved in any of the outcomes of matches (even Murray-Roddick was one of those "let the best man win" affairs for me). I've watched a bit more WTA tennis than usual, trying to get to know a few of the newer faces, and followed a few old favourites. Shame about Marat, though:(

Posted by greenhopper 07/04/2009 at 07:36 PM

avid, read their presser. it is very endearing and funny.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:37 PM

Avid A Engineer going Shopping? well I never lol!

Serena dosent really offend me at all.People and the press in general hang on to her every word it seems and take it out of all context.

Gee other tennis players in the press conferences at times make me boil with their sometimes off handed remarks.

At the end of the day Serena deserved her win full stop.

She had a great game plan and executed it perfectly.

Not bad for the two sisters also to take another trophy in the doubles.Again well done to both girls.

Without them in the WTA gee I would not like to say.

When these girls decide to hang up their racquets for good.People will then realize the great champions they are and whet they brought to the game of tennis full stop.

Take a bow.Serena and Venus I love watching you both play.

Posted by Arun 07/04/2009 at 07:37 PM

lol Rudy3.. that's not the reason I attached those videos. Anyway it has something for everyone, no? I thought the whole lineup was sensational -- Courier, Agassi, Edberg, Sampras, Becker, Chang, Lendl, Connors, JMac, Stich... the videos feature some great play there as well as fascinating on/off court talk.

Posted by rudy3 (proud Rafaelite since 2005) 07/04/2009 at 07:42 PM

Oh, they were playing, I'll have to watch it again, cause on first viewing i couldn't get past STefan Edberg's legs.

and volleys, can't forget the volleys.

it does put that generation in perspective though. Those were heady times for US tennis.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:44 PM

Rosangel Agree.Unless Rafa feels 100% confident the knee issue will always be in his mind.

I too do not want him back unless 100% fit.There is no point at all.

I was going to rewatch last years final again,then decided not to.

Yes there is a void missing here for sure.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 07:50 PM

Hey what about the Rock God of Tennis legs?

Give me them any day of the week lol!

Though I still think he is spending too much time in the sun or a tanning salon lol!

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 07:52 PM

Aussiemarg: one more GS singles title and Serena will tie Billie Jean King at 12. She surely must be the favourite to win the US Open this year?

I saw BJK being interviewed after the final today. She made the point about what a great player Serena is - but also referred to the likes of Evert, Navratilova and others who have been prepared to "pay the price"

That said, I've sort of come to the conclusion that both Williams sisters have found a balance between "real life" and tennis. Not to mention certain injury issues they have dealt with, and the murder of their elder half-sister, during their playing years.

I think if both are around for a few more years we may have their scheduling partly to thank for it. Whereas many female pros retire young in the current era.

If each hadn't had the other to contend with, they might both have at least a couple more GS titles. It's sort of interesting to wonder what might have happened if Richard and Oracene had had just one daughter, or a daughter and a son. Not that we'll ever know.

Posted by Ruth 07/04/2009 at 07:55 PM

In an era of Agassi and Chang and Courier and Kuerten, Pete Sampras did not win the FO. Oh, how awful! And I suppose the fact that he won "only" 70% of his matches on clay means that he was incompetent on clay. Ha! Give me a break!

Sampras combined his winning 14 Slams with ending the year at #1 for 6 consecutive years, an accomplishment that I find even more prestigeous than the bucketful of Slams because it demonstrates his consistent, day-to-day domination of all of the top-level competition that he faced.

But it's too early for the Sampras hour, so I'll say no more. :)

Rosangel: Your earlier comment is worth repeating, so I'll repeat it:

"It's always amusing when someone who demonstrably lacks graciousness in their dealings on this board criticises someone else for lack of same."

Posted by Or 07/04/2009 at 07:56 PM

Gosh, I'm watching Sampras induction into the hall of fame. He couldn't get two words out.

(Roger would give him a run for his money, when his time comes - honest, I think he should just give up and let Mirka deliver his speech for him, or something).

Posted by Tfactor 07/04/2009 at 07:56 PM

Here is a link to an article about Rafa's probable schedule for the rest of the year but it's in Spanish (I couldn't find the equivalent in English)
It says he's scheduled to play in Montreal but according to the article, despite his doctors and team not wanting him to play anything before that, he's dying to play again and he may play a clay tournament in Europe before Montreal.
http://www.abc.es/20090704/deportes-tenis/nadal-cambia-prioridades-20090704.html

Posted by lois 07/04/2009 at 07:57 PM

It is so good and soothing to see how many of us (wether Americans or Other Nationalities) would Love to see Andy Roddick win his 1rst Wimbledon after such a long time. It does my Heart great WHY ? Let us just say he worked HARDER, BECAME STRONGER and I Love his DRY SENSE OF HUMOR even when he's losing or have lost the game. He has been trying a long time to beat Roger, to no-avail. But I think the look in his eyes say's I am not going to let a Spanish Kid beat you that does not have the Serve I posse, (not that I don't like or Respect this young man I have even tosseled his hair a many of times) but I shall now take a page out of his book . Instead of paninkying, I shall keep you and my eye on the ball -only the ball. I think if I can get a couple of games going I can ride out the rest. Roddick, this is your shot, play the game like never did before-you don't want to hear "Well he had hia chance, all kinds of them and he BLOW-IT-AGAIN! I shall be watching,-praying,wishing and hoping for all your dreams too come true.
I AM IN YOU CORNER, LET'S GET IT ON, BRING ME A WIN.

Posted by Rosangel 07/04/2009 at 07:59 PM

Aussiemarg: I once worked out (when Pete posted something about being a blogger and how he wasn't keen on the term) that an anagram for bloggers is Borg's Leg. Or Borg Legs, as someone else (I think creig bryan) later worked out.

For whatever that's worth....not a lot, I suspect.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 07/04/2009 at 08:02 PM

Rosangel I think a lot of credit must go the their parents full stop.

Richard for example wasnt a Tennis Coach at all.Saw the athletic ability in his girls and he didnt even let them play junior level tennis or challenger level tennis.

Natural tennis athletes like Venus and Serena dont come along too often.

They changed the way of womans tennis when the first appeared in the WTA.

Both girls still love to compete.I think their love of the game and is still very strong.Also they have proven that they still can remain at the top of their game without living tennis 24 hours a day.Both girls have had outside interests and also done well in them.

I agree Serena on a h/court like the US OPEN will be hard to beat.

To me this is her best surface.Well we saw what she did in the final at this years AO.

Posted by avid sports fan aka "Sigh-Rena" 07/04/2009 at 08:03 PM

greenhopper - Thanks I will go and look at the presser now.

I flove Nenad, pregnant wives etc ;-)

"Q. Nenad, what do you think?

NENAD ZIMONJIC: Like he said, you know, I'm not gonna repeat what he said. I just remember the scene last year, you know, the problems with the arms, you know, coming with two pregnant wives here holding hands on their bellies after we won the trophies. Now we have three kids.
"

Posted by avid sports fan aka "Sigh-Rena" 07/04/2009 at 08:05 PM

I flove Daniel too ;-)

"Q. Duke of Kent say anything interesting to you?

DANIEL NESTOR: No. I don't think he knew who we were. He just watched the match.

I'm just kidding. No, you know, it's special playing in front of the Royal family. I don't think that was the case last year. But, you know, the Bryans bring out a bigger crowd and a better audience. I think Ben Stiller was there, apparently.

It's nice to play a full match on NBC back home following it. I think last year they only showed two sets. It's a little more special this year."

Posted by Carol 07/04/2009 at 08:09 PM

Aussiemarg, here is a article (a famous sport newspaper) which confirms that Rafa is going to play in Montreal. His doctor says he is doing really good and he is going to be ready for that tournament

http://www.as.com/tenis/articulo/nadal-volvera-competir-masters-1000/dasten/20090704dasdasten_4/Tes

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