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Learning to Un-Think 03/02/2010 - 4:04 PM

96465064 by Pete Bodo

When Ana Ivanovic repaired to the locker room in the bowels of Madison Square Garden after losing a very close one-set semifinal tussle in the Billie Jean King Cup exhibition yesterday, her first words to Kim Clijsters, the woman who beat her, were: "I've never been introduced in a match as being a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model!"

Clijsters, having been rather less sexily introduced as the first mother to win Wimbledon since Evonne Goolagong in 1980, shared a laugh with Ivanovic over that presumed honor, although Kim had other things on her mind - namely, Venus Williams, whom she would have to face shortly in the best-of-three, no-ad scoring final of the exo (more about that tomorrow; as most of you know, Venus won, 7-5 in the third).

It was a characteristically innocent remark by Ivanovic; she seems amazed that her cameo in the famous swimsuit issue has generated so much hype (at least in the U.S.). And when she related her exchange with Clijsters, it was in the same breathless, giggly manner with which she'd undoubtedly shared her surprise - a manner of engagement with which we all are by now familiar.

Ivanovic meets the world with a smile, and her laughter is unmistakably nervous; I take all that as a sublimation of her essential shyness. You just know that someone so prone to the breathless and cheerful has something to hide - herself. And that's not a criticism. The behaviors are a psychic olive branch, offered by one who's not entirely comfortable as the center of attention, perhaps not even in her own skin. If it could be done in a seemly, lady-like manner, Ivanovic would probably roll onto her back at the sight of you, exposing her tummy with her paws in the air.

This complicates things considerably, because it might seem that Ivanovic has very little to smile about these days, given her plummet in the rankings (to a present No. 27). The state of her game reinforces the idea that her girlish ways are a defense mechanism. What on earth does this girl have to be happy about? is a natural question to ask.

But the answer to that might be: quite a bit. After all, not every circus clown is crying inside, despite the popularity of that narrative. And some people aren't happy because of this or that (like, say, a lucrative lifetime endorsement deal with Adidas?), they're just, well. . . happy. They write songs about such people. Some of us mistrust such people. And such people are not supposed to be top tennis players. In Ivanovic's case, that issue is far from resolved.

Yesterday, Ivanovic seemed content with herself, and convincingly happy with her game, optimistic about her prospects in the big upcoming tournaments at Indian Wells and Miami. She was the opposite - and strikingly so - of the defensive, unhappy player she has ever right to be. Sorry to disappoint anyone who would have it any other way.

Ivanovic's sunny disposition - is there a WTA player who seems more gentle and innocent? - must be one reason she seems so relaxed; her shyness and the particular way she expresses it also advance the theory. And while those qualities will not win her matches or help her rein in that gone-wild ball toss, they're not bad allies in her ongoing battle against loss of confidence and self-esteem. And now there's another factor shaping her view of the future, her new coach, Heinz Gunthardt, who has coached (among others), Steffi Graf. You remember Steffi, aka Mrs. Andre Agassi? Can anyone be shy in so different a way than Ivanovic?

That's all okay with Heinz; he's an equal-opportunity shy-player shaper. And he's as shrewd and perceptive a judge of a player's hidden nature and abused assets as anyone. Gunthardt and Ivanovic have only worked together for 10 days, but Ivanovic says she can "feel" a huge improvement. And very few damaged players would have said, as Ivanovic did yesterday immediately after she lost to Clijsters, "I'm so excited, I wish I could go back on the practice court to hit more balls."

Ivanovic believes she's playing better, which is more than half the battle. She also admitted that her slump cut a little deeper than typical professional problems do, even though bouts of Marat Safin-esque introspection are not her forte. "It hurts (emotionally)," she said. "You play bad one week and it's okay, it happens. But when it's week after week, it gets. . . hard. You think, 'This is what I do best, and this is all I can do?'

The recent Fed Cup disaster in Serbia probably was Ivanovic's low point, or so she must hope. She admits to having felt an enormous amount of pressure playing against the Russians in front of her partisan countrymen in Belgrade (Ivanovic lost both her singles, and was part of the losing doubles team). But she says that's behind her now. A lot is behind her. "I see everything more clearly now because I'm playing better. I've been defending too much, when naturally I am an aggressive player."

Ivanovic isn't the first mild-mannered personality to pursue an aggressive style of play, but the contrast between her temperament and her most effective game is especially striking. Gunthardt feels he knows the root causes of the recent problems that helped wreck her confidence.

"The first thing I told Ana when we considered working together was, 'Forget about technique; there's nothing wrong your technique,'" Gunthardt told me last night. "The most important thing, I told her, was that when you start to think about something that comes naturally - like swallowing, or breathing - you can't do it naturally anymore."

One morning, Gunthardt surprised Ana by asking her to start practice by hitting 40 serves. He stood by, watching and counting, as she slowly unlimbered and served ball after ball. After the 40th ball, he remarked, "Your ball toss, it's perfect every time."

The very next toss, Gunthardt said, went astray. He smiled at her. Point made.

So the primary mission for Gunthardt is teaching or showing Ivanovic how to un-think. That's a somewhat delicate assignment, but both coach and player are well-designed for it. Gunthardt has a logical, keen, perceptive mind; he knows how to challenge a player, intellectually, by playing devil's advocate. He knows as much about mental as physical stretching. Ivanovic has surprised him with her intellect. "She's much more well-rounded and astute than the other women I've dealt with recently," he told me. "She's certainly the first player who's quoted (Sigmund) Freud to me."

Of course, being smart won't get it done for Ivanovic, nor will being well-read. She faces a tough, obstacle-strewn road, but she's shown an impressive degree of patience with herself. That's not to be underestimated - a player at war with herself is useless. 

Ivanovic says she's "very determined" to get back to the top; she smiled as she said that, but I was long past questioning her resolve or sincerity. "I still love the game," she added, "But the way I've been playing - well, it didn't make it very enjoyable."

It isn't exactly crying clown territory, but it's as close as someone with as sanguine a disposition as Ivanovic is apt to come.

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Posted by sod'sfriend 03/02/2010 at 08:56 PM

hey, maybe jj is related to "weird al" jankovic. she never takes life (her game) seriously! she's a joker at heart.

but i love "weird al" jankovic, though!

Posted by Annie (Vamos Heavenly Creature) 03/02/2010 at 08:59 PM

AM: a free bed in Paris during the french should not be passed up if at all possible. Fares may come down you never know. I hope you can figure a way to work that out. Speaking of Paris, I tried watching the film version of "phantom of the opera" and thought it was awful. I'm really not a fan of Andrew Lloyd Webber. I guess that makes me weird. And where is Rosangel these days? I miss her.

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:02 PM

hey what do ya know! jankovic holds.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 09:05 PM

Sevastova had her chances at 5-4 set point and 5-all break point but could not capitalize and went on to lose the set 7-5.

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 03/02/2010 at 09:05 PM

Annie I would rather spend at least a month in France then I get to go to Lyon.Even with a discounted fare from here its still around $2,000 return.Rosangel was here last week.She appears to be busy at work and I guess with Rafa not playing like a lot fo Rafa fans is waiting for his return at IW.

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:09 PM

eww two easy misses by jankovic.

Posted by tennisesq. 03/02/2010 at 09:10 PM

It's hard to believe that JJ is still in the Top 10.

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 09:14 PM

Does any1 know why Justine is not on the WTA rankings? Brisbane + Oz F should be enough to put her into top 40 or so. Is there a minimum number of tournaments before a player appears in the rankings?

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:17 PM

jankovic could actually get farther into the top ten if she does well over the next 5 weeks (this one included).

Posted by chicklet 03/02/2010 at 09:17 PM

Pspace, I think you need a minimum of three tournaments. After IW she should be added to the rankings.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 09:17 PM

Pspace, Justine has to play 3 tournaments before she gets a ranking

Posted by Tim (Year of Aussie Rogie ) 03/02/2010 at 09:19 PM

its kinda odd to dismiss word from the horse's mouth (Fed) in favor of Pete's unspecified 'sources' ... what on earth would be the purpose of posting on Facebook that u are feeling great and youve been cleared to play if in fact youve already decided to drop out?

unless Fed has agreed with the tournament director to keep it quiet until the last minute, for ticket sales sake, which IS of course possible because that's how the business game is played ... not exactly thrilled that Feddie has prob a few days of practice before he has to travel and be ready for a match though ...that said, hes gonna be FRESH for the clay court season, which is all that matters of course...

Posted by Tim (Year of Aussie Rogie ) 03/02/2010 at 09:21 PM

you need 3 tourneys to get a ranking...Henin will get a rank after IW..

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 09:22 PM

chicklet and Karen, tx.

Posted by tennisesq. 03/02/2010 at 09:22 PM

That is unbelievable. I don't even remember the last time JJ made it to the 2nd week of a major. USO '08? She won Marbella last year, but other than that, what else has she done to deserve a spot in the Top 10?

Posted by mina (meanie and proud of it) 03/02/2010 at 09:30 PM

last time i checked the top 10 rankings arent based on the most number of recent Slam second week showings... JJ is still there because she still plays like JJ does, week in and out. she's out there trying her best to stave off points loss the best and only way she can, whether she is out of form or not, the girl is working her backside off... so how about a little slack?

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:33 PM

she did win cincinatti and did get to the finals of tokyo as well. but she does need to step her game up for real.

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 09:42 PM

JJ was ruined by Pat Etchberry. He took JJ of the rockin' bod, and changed her into square JJ. Well, the rockin' bod is back ;-). And, besides, other than Serena and Dinara who has been really consistent in the slams?

Posted by Bobby 03/02/2010 at 09:44 PM

Hi, Guys. Enjoyed the post. Pete always gets the scoop (and knows how to make it fun to read). Plus what's not to like about Ana Ivanovic? Loved the "paws in the air" bit. And didn't think of it, but how true that Steffi Graf and Ivanovic are both shy but in different ways.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 09:45 PM

Jelena's performance right now will get her creamed against her fellow Top 10 players. Will be interested to see what she says about the match in her blog on SEWTA website.

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:49 PM

master ace, yes she makes every match a struggle even against lowly ranked players like this. and she is about to lose this set. it will also be interesting to see what she will blame her slopppy play on this time..

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 09:54 PM

Sevastova serving to force a deciding set 5-7,5-4

15-0 Jankovic nets FH
30-0 Jankovic BH wide after Sevastova drives BH deep on Jankovic BH side
40-0 Sevastova FH winner
Sevastova takes the set 6-4 as Jankovic nets FH

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 09:56 PM

Has anyone ever seen this young lady that JJ is playing play before? She is just freaking awesome. At one point I was wondering whether I was watching Serena Williams. Back to back aces on break points. Very nice. I am actually hoping she can win this. I was pulling for her to even win a set, but if anything she is playing like she wants to win. Good stuff.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 09:56 PM

The girl is just playing out of her mind right now. Really taking it to JJ

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 09:57 PM

yep this is sad stuff from jankovic as she loses the second set. what is her problem? really i have no clue why is she is playing so bad now. she lost the muscle she said she put on. her mother is doing fine. what is it? i actually miss her 2008 form.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 09:59 PM

OK off to watch the Good Wife - second favourite show behind NCIS. Good night all

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:01 PM

Sevastova breaks to start the final set as Jankovic FH sails wide. Sevastova serving 5-7,6-4,1-0

Posted by aussiemarg [Madame President in Comma Rehab for 2009] 03/02/2010 at 10:01 PM

Just a quick post to the Aussie posters.

As promised I rang Fox sports pay tv and they will be televising live all Masters Series,RG,Wimby and the USO live.Pity they were shut out for co televising the AO this year due to the fact they could not afford the price channel 7 had wanted.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:02 PM

Jankovic breaks back capped off by BH return winner. Jankovic to serve 7-5,4-6,1-all

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:04 PM

By the way, there is no HawkEye in Monterrey.

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 10:06 PM

Nice interview with Andre:

IT: When he first met Steffi’s dad, the two of them, who were both into boxing, almost came to blows. Steffi’s dad insisted your dad should have taught you a one-handed slice like Steffi’s and your dad said Steffi should have had a two-hander like yours. So which father was right? Who would have benefited more — you with a slice or Steffi with a two-hander?

AA: Steffi could hit the best slice backhand. It could neutralize a lot, but it didn’t always work offensively… [A two-hander] would have helped her on the second serve return, which is a huge shot in women’s tennis. So, that might be the deciding factor. Second serve return, she could have pounded it.

LOL, 1hbh FTW. Biff. Pow. Bang.

IT: When you were a kid, your dad told you, “Don’t think. You’re going to be No. 1, that’s the plan. That’s it. No thinking.” Then, years later, when you were getting to know Steffi and were caught in your head and stuck in your thoughts, she insisted “no, it’s all about feelings, stop thinking.”

AA: My father didn’t want me to think. Because he wanted me to do what he was saying. He thought and still thinks he has the answers to pretty much everything. Steffi wanted me to stop thinking so that I could feel my own answers, so that I could feel my own conclusions, so that I could just let it happen.

Steffi seems to be as whacked as Andre. Don't think, _feel_?

IT: When we see Federer, he plays with such ease, an almost dreamy serenity.

AA: I never identified with somebody like that. I never knew if I believed it. And if it is believable, it’s certainly a different life than I’ve had. When you see those moments like when he lost to Nadal and he just broke down, you wonder what he’s suppressing.

IT: Did that make him more human?

AA: For sure, I certainly understood that emotion.

Andre's solution was to just cry all the time, I guess.

IT: What about Sampras? You said you lost a lot of titles because of him, but you also learned more because of Pete.

AA: He shined a light on what was so apparently obvious. I needed inspiration and the way that he went about his work made me feel very different. He made me feel like an alien. He made me look at myself pretty hard. He made me understand.

Deep, I think. Or, just another excuse for Andre to look at himself?

Posted by crazyone 03/02/2010 at 10:13 PM

hah, Sevastova is Latvian too.

Posted by Fast Flow 03/02/2010 at 10:16 PM

Ticker said on headlines/ that Pete Bodo heard from a realiable (sp) source that Federer has pulled out of Indian Wells. If you look up Federer's facebook, he has posted just 2-hours ago that his doctors have given him the green light and he is 100% recovered and can go back to tennis. He said that he is preparing for Indian Wells now.
I think Ticker better check before he sends an alert such as that.

Posted by Fast Flow 03/02/2010 at 10:17 PM

Ticker said on headlines/ that Pete Bodo heard from a realiable (sp) source that Federer has pulled out of Indian Wells. If you look up Federer's facebook, he has posted just 2-hours ago that his doctors have given him the green light and he is 100% recovered and can go back to tennis. He said that he is preparing for Indian Wells now.
I think Ticker better check before he sends an alert such as that.

Posted by Fast Flow 03/02/2010 at 10:17 PM

Ticker said on headlines/ that Pete Bodo heard from a realiable (sp) source that Federer has pulled out of Indian Wells. If you look up Federer's facebook, he has posted just 2-hours ago that his doctors have given him the green light and he is 100% recovered and can go back to tennis. He said that he is preparing for Indian Wells now.
I think Ticker better check before he sends an alert such as that.

Posted by sod'sfriend 03/02/2010 at 10:20 PM

jj is playing ho-hum, what's with those silly high balls sitting in the deuce court?

Posted by sod'sfriend 03/02/2010 at 10:21 PM

jj gets the break for 4-2 but still...

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:24 PM

Jankovic breaks but fails to consolidate. Sevastova serving 5-7,6-4,3-4

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 10:26 PM

oh jankovic.....this is beyond bad for a player that was once ranked no. 1.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:29 PM

Jelena getting medical attention from the trainers. Looks like it involves her feet.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 10:30 PM

Oh JJ this is why I can never be a fan. A medical timeout - oh please

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:31 PM

Jamaica Karen,
I can not wait until she put her blog entry on SEWTA website especially if she wins.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:34 PM

After a long CC baseline rally, Sevastova ends the point with a nice drop shot for the winner giving her game point.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 10:35 PM

MA, it is just pathetic. If you are going to lose at least lose with honour. Stop finding excuses already. You will never see real champions behaving like this, no matter what.

Posted by sod'sfriend 03/02/2010 at 10:36 PM

0 - 30, uh oh for jj!

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 10:39 PM

Come on Anastasia, let us see if you can serve for the match and at least win this one. If you do, you certainly deserve this victory.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:39 PM

0-30 for Sevastova as Jankovic nets volley
0-40 Jankovic FH long
15-40 Sevastova FH long
By the way after my 10:34 post, Sevastova held for 4-all 3rd set
30-40 Sevastova nets BH
Sevastova breaks as Jankovic BH sails wide set up by good angled FH by Sevastova then hit a good BH approach

Sevastova serving for the match 5-7,6-4,5-4

Posted by Tigress 03/02/2010 at 10:42 PM

Looking forward to seeing Rafael Nadal (Not Good Enough to make the RG '09 Finals and play Federer) show up and play at IW. And get whipped by Soderling, Djokovic, Davydenko, Delpo or whoever, and lose another 800 points or so.

Then the REM (Rafa Excuse Machine) can crank up again. The early line is on Knees, Rustiness, or Travel. Altitude, Fatigue, or Family issues probably won't fit this time. Dark horse excuses: Girlfriend problems, mental distraction from making Shakira video, new unspecified physical ailment.

Posted by crazyone 03/02/2010 at 10:43 PM

LMAO. It's a Latvian invasion in tennis.

Commiserations JJ fans.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:43 PM

0-15 ?????
0-30 Sevastova FH long
15-30 Jankovic lob long after Sevastova came to net
30-30 Sevastova effective lob in corner after Jankovic came to net on BH approach
40-30 Sevastova service winner
Sevastova wins the match as her FH passing shot was too hot for Jankovic at net as she came behind BH approach

Anastasija Sevastova defeated Jelena Jankovic 5-7,6-4,6-4

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 10:44 PM

She did it. Congrats. I have no idea who you are but you deserved this win tonight. You played very well. JJ go find your game - running down balls and throwing up looping high balls will not win you matches. And stop taking MTOs when you are losing. It makes you look bad

Posted by sod'sfriend 03/02/2010 at 10:45 PM

thanks sava for putting us out of our misery

hey, jj, here's a song from your brother "weird al"

Posted by tennisesq. 03/02/2010 at 10:46 PM

It's time for JJ to make room in the Top 10 for someone else =).

Posted by Jamaica Karen (in love with Mark Harmon) 03/02/2010 at 10:48 PM

MA, she played really smart tennis. She served well, her groundies held up. She has absolutely no net game, but her mental game was so on. Never seen her before but what a way to announce yourself to the tennis world.

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 10:51 PM

Jamaica Karen,
I think it was a combination of Sevastova playing well(maybe best in her career) and Jankovic playing badly from 4-1 in the first set and never recovered despite winning the last 3 games of the first set.

Posted by John 03/02/2010 at 11:00 PM

Someone is looking (like always) to get a "good" reply..........

Posted by Sherlock 03/02/2010 at 11:00 PM

Tigress, was posting that the highlight of your night? :)

Seek help, child. Soon.

Posted by london 03/02/2010 at 11:01 PM

jankovic is really pathetic. i mean she really needs to do some soul searching. im not her biggest fan and i even i feel bad for her.

Posted by greenhopper 03/02/2010 at 11:02 PM

My first time watching Domi since that horrible AO match. Will try not to throw things.

Posted by greenhopper 03/02/2010 at 11:03 PM

How mighty generous of you, london. The entire JJ fan community appreciates it.

Posted by John 03/02/2010 at 11:11 PM

Thanks Sherlock!

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 11:12 PM

Yep, the REM produced that music video with Shakira. We had him make out with her just to put icing on that cake. What man wouldn't be distracted? I give him a pass for the rest of the year!

Posted by Sherlock 03/02/2010 at 11:13 PM

LOL, John. I had a good laugh that our posts were exactly the same time. :)

Posted by Master Ace 03/02/2010 at 11:13 PM

Wednesday Order of Play from Monterrey:

4 PM - Hantuchova, Zakopalova and Coin vs King scheduled
8 PM - Cornet vs Wozniak to be followed by Pavlyuchenkova vs Hercog

Davis Cup Schedule(Friday - Saturday - Sunday USA EST)
Spain vs Switzerland (7 AM - 10 AM - 6 AM)
France vs Germany (7 AM - 9 AM - 7 AM)
Russia vs India (5 AM - 6 AM - 5 AM)
Sweden vs Argentina (9 AM - 10 AM - 7 AM)
Croatia vs Ecuador (8 AM - 8 AM - 8 AM)
Serbia vs United States (10 AM - 8 AM - 9 AM)
Chile vs Israel (9 AM - Noon - 9 AM)
Belgium vs Czech Republic (7 AM - 8 AM - 7:30 AM)

Posted by John 03/02/2010 at 11:19 PM

Hehe Sherlock, me too!

REM is a smart guy

Posted by Sherlock 03/02/2010 at 11:32 PM

Pspace, I like your kind of Rafa fandom. Though AM most certainly won't approve. :)

Posted by VC 03/02/2010 at 11:51 PM

Really looking forward to the Davis Cup. It's been a decade or so since India were in the World Group. I have fond memories of watching India pull off some big DC upsets in the '90s.

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/02/2010 at 11:56 PM

Sherlock, hehe, AM will prolly give me enough demerits to last a life time.

VC, yeah, I'm looking forward to see Swiss-Spain and Serbia-USA...Both ties have clear favourites, but I think there'll be at least one upset.

Posted by Heidi 03/02/2010 at 11:59 PM

Hey all! Glad to be back. This is a great post. Pete has remarked before that Ivanovic was thinking too hard, and sounds like her coach has his work cut out for him -- but I hope it works out. I'm afraid I don't remember much about Steffi Graf's coaching relationship -- or rather, never knew anything -- but everyone seems optimistic.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,bring back the Sleeveless 03/03/2010 at 12:00 AM

Hmmmmmmm between Mr x and a "pushy so called Rafa fan" who decided to come on board because of that Latin Diva.

Printing presses world wide are working o/time to issue updated Demerit Cards.

Posted by greenhopper 03/03/2010 at 12:11 AM

Are we calling whatever Pspace has going on with Rafa "fandom" now? Just you wait till he gets into a serious discussion about the validity of his Wimbledon win.


Vinci held for 4-2 after an epic game that had about 20 bazillion deuce points. Domi, in typical WTA fashion got broken serving for the set, but broke right back to take it 6-4. She's up 3-0 in the 2nd. Frequent cheer yells of "Pojd'me!" heard from the stands; possibly her team. All Vinci seems to be doing is slice a ton of balls and serve well at times.

Posted by greenhopper 03/03/2010 at 12:33 AM

And Domi serves it out after a mini scare. 4 & 3. Not too shabby.

Posted by mellow yellow 03/03/2010 at 12:40 AM

Just curious....where was it written that Mirka wouldn't be in IW (if Fed goes)? Do we even know for sure that she was/is sick? I'm confused.

Posted by Pspace (Proud Rafaelite since Shakira) 03/03/2010 at 12:54 AM

LOL, 'hopper. What do you mean? Rafa's win at Wimbledon is the single greatest tennis accomplishment that I've seen in my life *innocent face*

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,bring back the Sleeveless 03/03/2010 at 12:59 AM

"rolls eyes"

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 03/03/2010 at 01:04 AM

Morning. :)

JJ. :((( Still, congrats to Sevastova, good win for her. :)

Enjoyed the post, Pete. :)

Posted by zenggi 03/03/2010 at 01:27 AM

Good morning,

Good thoughts about learning to un-think, Pete. Not thinking about Ana in particular because I don't follow WTA very close, but in general.

Today I'm going to carry out my civic duty and vote unthinkingly for one or other countryperson who will be do nothing useful for the community during the next 4 years.

Posted by zenggi 03/03/2010 at 01:33 AM

If I read Roger's Facebook message right, he doesn't know yet if he is going to IW. He'll probably wait till the weekend to be certain if his training and form is good enough to make the long flight.

Posted by Fast Flow 03/03/2010 at 01:35 AM

Mellow Yellow:
Fed said in an interview for Swiss-TV that Mirka had what he had this week. Federer's sister is also traveling with them. (Possibly to take care of the twins while Mirka is recovering). Getting back to Bodo's comment on a reliable source that Federer will not be playing in Indian Wells. Federer said on his facebook that he was given the green light to go ahead and start praticing for Indian Wells. I don't think Federer would deceive his fans on his facebook just because of ticket sales. He has the rest of this week and part of next week to practice. Remember, it's a master event so he gets a bye in the first round. He is also not playing Davis Cup this weekend, so he can practice. I think that some of the media are just trying to stir-up gossip.

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 03/03/2010 at 01:46 AM

Oh gosh, I hope Federer can play, but if there are still doubts next week it might be better not to.

Hi, zenggi. :)

Posted by zenggi 03/03/2010 at 02:07 AM

Hi, jewell :)

We'll have to wait and see about Roger.

Sergi Bruguera who is in Logroño giving some clinics to children, said yesterday that
"It's impossible for Spain to lose playing at home".

2 days, 5 hours and 15 minutes till the first DC match.

Off to work.

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 03/03/2010 at 02:19 AM

I hope he means unthinkable rather than impossible, otherwise that really is tempting fate. :)

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 03/03/2010 at 03:25 AM

Sad that Safina is out, anyway. Time for work, see you all later. :)

Posted by mina (meanie and proud of it) 03/03/2010 at 03:30 AM

"It's impossible for Spain to lose playing at home".

oh Sergi. yeah, just like people said it was impossible for Argentina to lose the DC 08 Final cos they were at home and playing an opposing team without it's biggest weapons...

Posted by manuelsantanafan 03/03/2010 at 04:05 AM

Reason that I didn't refer to Bruguera's words earlier was that I didn't want to contribute to the jinxing of Spain.

But, since the words have been brought up here, I'll just point out that Bruguera is a supreme dumbass for making that statement.

And I have to wonder why Bruguera would be yakking about Davis Cup in light of the fact that this two-time Roland Garros champion was virtually useless in Davis Cup. He got wins over players ranked much lower than him but, when facing players ranked around his ranking or higher, Bruguera rarely, if ever, rose to the occasion.

Posted by VC 03/03/2010 at 04:30 AM

Hmm.. on first reading I thought Bruguera might have been misquoted. Apparently not.

Posted by VC 03/03/2010 at 04:31 AM

On the same note, Bhupathi shouldn't be going around tweeting that India's chances have improved now that Kolya's out with injury. Dude, we're still massive underdogs.

Posted by zenggi 03/03/2010 at 05:04 AM

I'd like that TW posters would take into consideration that people's opinions are magnified by the media to sell more newspapers. I don't see the need to insult anybody by those printed opinions, anyway.

More news about the coming Spain-Switzerland DC. Some of the Spanish wise (tennis) people are also conviced that Spain will win. Including Toni Nadal who says that it can go 3-2 or 5-0 but that there is no doubt that Spain will win.

Posted by imjimmy 03/03/2010 at 05:32 AM

Did anyone see this?

The little master with the hottest babe in tennis. Awesome!

Posted by k1c 03/03/2010 at 04:17 PM

isn't that tendulkar with kirilenko in an exhibition back in 2007 in india?

Posted by arbiter 03/03/2010 at 04:45 PM

The best Serbian female tennis player is Jelena. If Ana is trying to make a career as a model, it has nothing to do with tennis, and I am absolutely not interested in that. Bodo is just writing good words about here because she has accpted to sell her body for money. Bodo protects corporate investement. Never, never, never will he write something like this about Novak or Jelena. Reason? He is snot paid for that.

Posted by Ray T. 03/03/2010 at 05:01 PM

Thanks for the news about Mario Ancic, Greehopper ! He's got a long way to go, but he'll take anything now being back down to the Top 500.

Posted by Dorf 03/03/2010 at 08:49 PM

Professional tennis in the broad sense is entertainment and is all about personalities. Didn't Ivanovic, unlike Jankovic win a Grand Slam singles title? And a top player who drops to number 27 makes a good story. Obviously one wonders how such a drop happened, and what the future looks like for that player. Posing for a swimsuit issue is not "selling your body" any more than using your body to earn money by playing tennis is.

Posted by Dorf 03/03/2010 at 09:08 PM

I remember reading about Jankovic when she rose into the top 5 players. She was an interesting story then because the general public didn't know anything about her at first. Is there an interesting story about Jankovic waiting to be done now? Because Ivanovic's demise was a story waiting to be covered by the tennis media.

Posted by noleisthebest 03/04/2010 at 08:18 AM

I hope Ana comes back to where she belongs top 10 soon, her game when in form is not bad to watch, but it needs to be perfect, if the smallest things doesn't work - it all falls into pieces, strange....

Posted by Peter 03/04/2010 at 09:07 AM

Murray SUCKS, what a jerk

Posted by Aufbau the Dog 03/04/2010 at 11:05 AM

I think a lot of great tennis players have been "jerks". McEnroe, Connors, Nastase, Serena, Henin, Sharapova, Seles, now Murray, and many other players have been flakes who just make goofy comments and act strangely. Sometimes it rubs me the wrong way, sometimes it doesn't.

Posted by andy roddick net worth 01/01/2013 at 07:23 AM

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