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One More Roar? 11/05/2010 - 10:02 AM

53460934 by Pete Bodo

By now, I assume most of you have read the home page exclusive on the plans to launch a competitor to the Davis Cup—a plan that's been 10 years in the making (in the mind of Mike Davies), and may become a reality as early as 2013 if Butch Buchholz, that old lion of tennis politics and promotion, has anything to do with it. Which he does. Buchholz, who's stepped down as the promoter of the Key Biscayne event he created, must feel like he has one more resounding roar to deliver.

Actually, the roles (and intertwined fates) of the two point men in this "World Cup of Tennis" (my phrase; as of yet, there is no official name for this international, nations-based competition), Mike Davis and Butch Buchholz, bear noting. Whatever you think of this full frontal assault on the ITF's Davis Cup—a competition that I and many others really do hold dear—one thing can't be denied: Davies and Buchholz are tennis men, through and through.

We're not talking about a couple of guys who, say, made a fortune during the mortgage crisis and now want to get their faces on ESPN or NBC. Both of them are entrepreneurial tennis insiders, and each one paid his dues and helped drag tennis kicking and screaming into the Open Era. They are not just FRL (Friends of Rod Laver), but also godfathers to the likes of Steffi Graf, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Chris Evert, Rafael Nadal, Martina Navratilova and Roger Federer.

Davies, now in his late 70s, is a former British No. 1, a past doubles finalist at Wimbledon and a Davis Cup player who accumulated a 24-13 record. He's also the guy whom you have to thank for the optic yellow tennis ball. He didn't invent it, but he made sure it was used when he served as the executive director of what was certainly the most "professional"—and probably the most promising—of the early attempts to organize the pro game, World Championship Tennis.

There are still those (and I'm one of them) who feel that tennis might be better off today had WCT not been killed off by, basically, a conspiracy among competitors who feared that Lamar Hunt (who conceived WCT) would grow too powerful and make of tennis something like he created when he helped found the American Football League (which eventually merged with its rival to create today's not-exactly-struggling NFL).

Nothing like the fear of success, right?

Oh, did I mention that Davies is also a former executive director of the ATP? And, ironically, let's remember that as the ITF's General Manager in the 1980s, Davies utterly revitalized...the Davis Cup.

Buchholz, like Davies, is a blooded veteran of the tennis wars, and he emerged one of the big winners thanks to the tournament that he founded (Key Biscayne) and built into, arguably, the fifth most prestigious event on the calendar, behind the Grand Slams. Unless you've been living under a rock these past three decades, you know about Buchholz.

One anecdote that Butch told me when we spoke the other day remains vivid as I try to sort out how I feel about this potential challenge to Davis Cup. "Back in the 1960s, the ITF rejected the plea I and some others were making to allow professionals to play at all the major events, alongside the amateurs (before Open tennis, which began in 1968, only amateurs were allowed to play at the Grand Slam events). Then, in 1967, Herman David, the chairman of the All England Club (Wimbledon), said, 'I'll let you come back and play here as professionals if you show me that you can fill the stadium. If you show me that the public still cares about Rod Laver and the rest of you."

Buchholz and company took up the offer, organized a pro tournament that was held at Wimbledon (I think it featured an eight-man field), and packed the house. "After that," Buchholz remembered, "It was a done deal. David said he didn't care what the ITF said or did, we would be welcome at WImbledon."

Perhaps the ITF has to undergo a similar crisis when it comes to Davis Cup, although it's important to remember that we're not just talking about allowing people to play here—we're talking about profoundly altering the format of a century-old event that has produced some of tennis's most storied moments—right up to the present day.

Perhaps, in an ever-shrinking world populated by tennis players who essentially become international citizens the moment they begin to achieve noteworthy success, that wonderful choice-of-ground rule isn't quite as important as it once was. Maybe in the arena-era, the idea that site selection produces an exotic and compelling background is more nostalgia and wishful thinking than reality. Will the arena used for the final in Belgrade in a few weeks time really feel like a piece of Serbia in any regard other than the preponderance of Serbs in attendance?

Buchholz told me that his shadow Davis Cup has great potential as a television spectacle; the ITF president, Francesco Ricci Bitti, told me that his job isn't to make money for the ITF, it's to grow the game in the 204 member nations of the ITF, and that those constituents really like the present template. They feel it's the one that would give the largest number of them a shot at Davis Cup glory. It's pretty hard to dismiss that mandate as unworthy or irrelevant. And in all honesty, I don't hear many voices in Europe or South America demanding that Davis Cup be "fixed." As far as I know, they don't think it's broken.

I'll have to mull over all these questions in the coming days, maybe share some of the ideas and learn what y'all think. The one thing I know for now is that Davies, Buchholz, and their "reformer" allies (a cast of characters that includes Cliff Drysdale, as well as the brothers McEnroe) are neither gung-ho revolutionaries nor mercenaries. They are, quite simply, tennis guys. And it would be unwise as well as unfair to characterize them as anything but fellow travelers in the great, ongoing pro tennis journey.


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Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:02 PM

deeps I was just kidding with you ok

Hopefully it will be no 6

Posted by Old man Fed fan 11/05/2010 at 04:03 PM

deeps, yes, the old man is on a mission to make Muzz look good. Losing to that punk twice in final in straight sets, no less! Geez.

Posted by Samantha Elin, Caro 2010 YE #1 11/05/2010 at 04:05 PM

I'm watching it now and no thanks for telling me the score which I didn't look at. Sorry moderator, I'm just singing the words from the Swedish national anthem to wish Robin luck. It just reads, Thou ancient, thou free born, the mountainous North. Yes, I want to live and I want to die in Sweden.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:05 PM

Roger breaks

Posted by Andrew 11/05/2010 at 04:06 PM

Federer breaks: a BH DTL pass is 1/2 an inch wide, but he gets a second serve and applies the pressure, earning the break on a forced error. 3-2 Federer, with the break. Highlight was the first point, guessing right, staying at home in the deuce corner and driving a stab FH GS winner into the ad corner. "C'mon," indeed.

Posted by Vie 11/05/2010 at 04:07 PM

Rafa played Paris only from 2007. It seems this is really a raggedy part of the season for these two.

Posted by deeps 11/05/2010 at 04:08 PM

Old man Fed fan,
Its all part of the plan. Losing H2H to Murray = British media hype = pressure on Murray and you get the rest of the picture. :)

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:08 PM

Samantha Elin I hope you get to be a vet before you die in Sweden lol!

Posted by wilson75 11/05/2010 at 04:08 PM

"Roger did not play Paris from 2004-2006, his most successful years."

Vie: Roger couldn't play Paris in 2004 and 2005 because of injury.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:12 PM

Roger gets the double break

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:12 PM

Roger rallies from 40-0 to get a double break lead as Radek volley sails long. At 40-0, Roger got it started with a BH return winner.

Roger serving for match 6-3,5-2

Posted by Andrew 11/05/2010 at 04:13 PM

A DF by Stepanek then a biffed BH volley, and now it's 5-2 Federer with a second break. Federer's service game ended with a FH winner that was hit like it had made a move on Mirka.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (dem a go tired fi see mi face - Bob Marley) 11/05/2010 at 04:14 PM

FH winner that was hit like it had made a move on Mirka. - LMAO

Posted by Jamaica Karen (dem a go tired fi see mi face - Bob Marley) 11/05/2010 at 04:15 PM

Roger very aggressive off returns. Me likey

Posted by Vie 11/05/2010 at 04:15 PM

wilson75, they didn't really need to win all masters.

Posted by Jamaica Karen (dem a go tired fi see mi face - Bob Marley) 11/05/2010 at 04:15 PM

BRILLIANT, ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT !!!!!

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:16 PM

0-15 Roger nets volley after coming forward
15-15 Roger Ace at the T
15-30 Roger FH wide
30-30 Radek nets FH return after T serve
40-30 Roger BH winner after running Radek side to side
Roger wins the match as he aces at the T

Roger Federer defeated Radek Stepanek 6-3,6-2

Posted by Jamaica Karen (dem a go tired fi see mi face - Bob Marley) 11/05/2010 at 04:16 PM

That 30-30 all point was TMF. I don't care what anyone says. That was TMF

Posted by thebigapple 11/05/2010 at 04:17 PM

Fed looking like the old days...yes, I know it is only poor Radek. But nice, nice!

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:19 PM

Indeed great point at 30 all

Hmmm everyone stood up after Roger won though I still didnt see Mirka and her Fab Bag

Is there not fairness in this world?

Congrats to Roger and to his fans

Allez!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by NP 11/05/2010 at 04:20 PM

AM, I was just repeating that blowhard Gimbelstob's own description.

deeps, two words: Bridgette Wilson.

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:20 PM

Starace vs Ferrer at Valencia:

http://www.fromsport.com/v-0/8/192/v-99208.html

Posted by Andrew 11/05/2010 at 04:20 PM

My goodness. I think Federer probably enjoyed that 30-30 point - I know I certainly did. Stepanek was whipped from side to side, and Federer finished with a flowing BH winner to ad. Ace up the middle, 1 hour on the ticket, let's go tuck in the twins.

Commiserations to Stepanek fans - he went down 54-38, or 59% to 41%: that's a clean kill, and Stepanek didn't play that poorly, if you ask me - when Federer stepped up a gear, Stepanek looked a bit like the Coyote watching the Roadrunner whiz off into the Arizona desert.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:24 PM

NP You actually take notice of Him?

Posted by Chris 11/05/2010 at 04:25 PM

Article out that says Nadal wd from Paris due to a shoulder injury.
http://www.as.com/tenis/articulo/rafa-nadal-estara-masters-1000/dasten/20101105dasdasten_3/Tes

Posted by NP 11/05/2010 at 04:28 PM

AM, not the way you think. Sorry to disappoint you.

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:30 PM

40-40 Potito BH long
A-40 David CC FH passing shot wide as Potito came forward
Potito holds as David BH return sails long

David to serve 7-5,4-3

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:30 PM

Chris Yes thanks.Thanks for the link

His new found serve? pfft.


NP I know that ok

I think by now I kind of know you

Well I think though you do surprise me now and then.

Posted by Ross (FOE, even Gael) 11/05/2010 at 04:32 PM

While I’m a big tennis fan, I’m an anti-nationalist. (The last time I REALLY cared about a DC final was in 1973, and I didn’t root for the home team.) While I’d prefer a post-nationalist team format of some kind, tennis is too hide bound for that to be a realistic possibility. The Buchholz-Davies proposal has elements (men + women/2 week grand finale) that sound like steps forward to enhance tennis exposure. I’m with Charles@ 2:53; give it a try-- alternating years with the traditional Fed/DC format.

Posted by manuelsantanafan 11/05/2010 at 04:33 PM

Tim:

I don't know why you seem to believe that Ferru is Rafa's whipping boy.

Ferru's beaten Rafa at the U.S. Open.

Ferru's beaten Rafa at the Year End Championships.

And Rafa has had very unimpressive post-U.S. Open results on the tennis courts, video games arenas, or golf courses.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:35 PM

Manuel I think Rafa could have done better on the golf course though he did have that Choker Garcia in his team.

Posted by NP 11/05/2010 at 04:39 PM

AM, Peter may be a great man, but I'm perfect.

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:39 PM

30-40 for David
40-40 David BH return long
40-A Potito nets FH
40-40 David BH return long on 2nd serve
A-40 David nets FH
Potito holds with service winner at the T

David serving for match 7-5,5-4

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:43 PM

NP Of course you are that goes without saying

Though Peter is flying me down to Melbourne as a belated Birthday present to see Leonard Cohen?

Could you top that?

Vamos David!!!

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 04:43 PM

15-0 David volley winner after coming forward behind FH
30-0 David Ace at the T
40-0 Potito FH wide
MP 3 for David
David wins the match as Potito nets FH

David Ferrer defeated Potito Starace 7-5,6-4

Posted by NP 11/05/2010 at 04:44 PM

AM, I'm frugal, unlike Peter. Like I said, I'm perfect.

GTG. Later.

Posted by lilscot 11/05/2010 at 04:45 PM

AM:

Oh, no worries at all. I sure wasn't upset when I left that comment. Quite the contrary. Comments like that don't bother me anymore, they just make me shake my head these days. :)

Old man Fed Fan:

Rafa's not going to be playing like he did last year in London, make no mistake about that. Don't let last year's tired effort fool you into thinking that Rafa is going to be THAT Rafa this year.

Anytime he's made public statements about wanting something, he does it. Otherwise you won't hear him saying he's preparing hard for something if he doesn't really believe he's got a good shot at it.

You may think Roddick would beat him if he's in his half, but I highly doubth that going by both men's recent records.

But, I do believe this year's YEC will be much more competitive and exciting than last year's all around. Rafa, Roger, and Novak all seem to be fairly motivated and hungry this year.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:45 PM

NP Frugal is your middle name

Bye

Good win for David!!

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:46 PM

lilscot Laughter Is The Best Medicine!

Posted by lilscot 11/05/2010 at 04:46 PM

Poor Radek. I'm not sure why, but I've always felt so sorry for him whenever he's played Roger. He seems to get him in draws an awful lot too. Time is NOT on his side. :)

Posted by manuelsantanafan 11/05/2010 at 04:50 PM

Kimiko

Date

Krumm

check

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:50 PM

lilscot Ask poor Lleyton he either cops Roger or Rafa in his draws lol!

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:53 PM

Well at least the Worm has Nicole to go home to these days

Posted by Tim (Moonpies lead to violence!) 11/05/2010 at 04:54 PM

well true re Ferru, he acutally has a decent game plan most of the time with Nads, but lets get Soderling in Rafa's group and Ferru in Fed's shall we?

I cant bear to watch one more Sod Fed match, enough! and someone needs to put Verdasco out of his misery and take his place in the draw, already! and Berdbrain, well, I have no words... can the season just end now?

Id like a note from Rafa's many doctors, too, I am not fully on board with a shoulder injury popping up after 3 weeks off...

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 04:55 PM

Tim

I will email the docotors report to you ASAP

Posted by Queeny 11/05/2010 at 04:55 PM

Nice win for Roger and all over in an hour. :))

Posted by sisu 11/05/2010 at 05:09 PM

Late to the party as usual. ;)) Read back a bit and wanted to say Roger and Rafa are scheduled to play Abu Dhabi (Dec. 30) and Doha (Jan. 3) if that’s useful to anyone.

Abu Dhabi - http://www.newkerala.com/news/world/fullnews-75705.html
Doha - http://www.latestsportsbuzz.com/?p=8675

Haven’t read anything about Dubai yet (Feb. 21).


Happy for Roger’s win. The Tennis Channel is showing a “Program Alert” - 8pm EST/TW time they will show AndyR/DavidN followed by RogerF/RadekS. Maybe it’s a little thank you to all of you working hard to keep the world economy going. ;)) I know not everyone gets TTC but thought I’d mention in case someone’s interested.

Posted by Jackie 11/05/2010 at 05:11 PM

Programming note: Gettin' the Deuce Club together as I speak ... will have it up shortly. Hope to see you guys there. :)

Posted by lightforce 11/05/2010 at 05:13 PM

Tim,
Verdasco is not going to make it in the top 8.

Posted by Or 11/05/2010 at 05:13 PM

Well. Woah. I didn't see the Rafa retirement coming at all, and apperantly, neither did he. Shoulder issues, huh? That's a new one. I hope it would be fine for London.

Sorry Rafa fans.

Rog looking good today, I'm frazzling a bit because of A-Rod. He was looking good. I am sure Roger is dying to get another crack at the Djoker (who is playing great).

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:31 PM

lightforce Good to see you again

I agree I doubt Verdasco will make it to London

Posted by Colette 11/05/2010 at 05:32 PM

Anyone who doesn't access throught Tennis.com or hasn't yet seen - don't miss the photos of Elton John in tennis garb.

And I see Amelie Mauresmo and Yannick Noah will be running the NYC Marathon. (as well as Gimelslob)

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:35 PM

Thinking about it Rafa hasnt done hard practice for weeks now

So with this slight injury to his shoulder is not that alarming


Colette Saw Justin G was doing the NYC Marathon

Maybe some one can get him to do a by tour and miss the finish line

Can you imagine if he does well what we will all have to Cop?

Perish that thought.

Posted by Colette 11/05/2010 at 05:39 PM

LOL, AM.

On a serious note, just heard there was a Quantas plane crash.

Posted by Tim (Moonpies lead to violence!) 11/05/2010 at 05:40 PM

if Verdasco wins or does well in Paris he cant make it in? since the bottom half of the top 20 are literally all injured, how can he NOT m ake it?

Posted by lilscot 11/05/2010 at 05:40 PM

AM:

I'm laughing, I'm laughing! :) Man, do I feel better. It really IS the best medicine! :)

Tim:

I'm with you on never wanting to see another Sod/Fed match. They're just so.......zzzzzzzzzzzzz....oops, even thinking about it makes me fall asleep. And I'm sooooo over Berdych too.

And you can have a note from Rafa's docs but you're gonna have to pay for it! Maybe wip out that cover of the latest Tennis mag you've been using as a dart-board and give it a big ol' kiss. :)

Posted by Master Ace 11/05/2010 at 05:42 PM

Saturday Order of Play:

WTA: Bali at 2 AM - Date Krumm vs Ivanovic
WTA: Bali at 4 AM - Hantuchova vs Kleybanova
ATP: Basel at 9:30 AM - Troicki vs Djokovic followed by Federer vs Roddick
ATP: Valencia at 11 AM - Ferrer vs Soderling
ATP: Valencia at 3 PM - Granollers vs Simon

Fed Cup Final

USA vs Italy (4 PM on Saturday and Sunday)
Coco Vandeweghe vs Francesca Schiavone
Bethanie Mattek-Sands vs Flavia Pennetta
Bethanie Mattek-Sands vs Francesca Schiavone
Coco Vandeweghe vs Flavia Pennetta
Liezel Huber/Melanie Oudin vs Sara Errani/Roberta Vinci

Posted by lilscot 11/05/2010 at 05:42 PM

Colette:

That's a very weird post! :) Going from a, "lol," to, "there was a Quantas plane crash," made me head whip around 350 degrees! :)

So sorry to hear about the crash though. Do you know if anyone survived?

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:43 PM

Colette Hell I will just check out our news

I am flying Qantas next week too

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:47 PM

No everything is ok they went back and made a emergency landing

Phew there was smoke apparently and people of course were screaming from what I read in the report

Still reading

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:50 PM

The made a emergency landing at Changi airport

Engine trouble again

Hmmmm.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 05:51 PM

Everyone is ok thank goodness

Posted by Colette 11/05/2010 at 05:56 PM

AM, thanks - that's good news!!

(Lilscot, was responding to a previous - while I heard something about it in the background. Sorry for the whiplash)

Posted by imjimmy 11/05/2010 at 06:03 PM

""That two handed backhand will soon become as loopy as his forehand if he doesn't practise it.""

deeps: I agree. The problem with his backhand is consistency, or rather the lack of it. At times, it's looked really good (ex against Soderling at Wimb.), but at others times he's missed a lot, and by a wide margin. That's one reason for his poor b/p conversion rate. Overall, the backhand is still nowhere close to the solid reliable weapon it was in AO 2009. He could hit winners, on will, using his cc backhand then.

To compensate, IMO, Nadal is relying too much on forehand. Obviously, his footwork and depth on his forehand has been excellent. He's moving brilliantly and running around his backhand, from one double alley to another, literally dancing around the court and hitting forehand after forehand. Of course, It makes for excellent viewing but surely can't be good for the long term. I've rarely seen a player protect one side at the expense of the other as much.

Seems like Nadal's shoulder injury is because of hard practice with his forehand. Given his unorthodox buggywhip (hard) swing this is not surprising. I've always felt that Nadal has been fortunate with injuries in his upper body. He'll have to be a little more careful in future..

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 06:06 PM

imjimmy I agree with you and Deeps thoughts

He is relying too heavy on his f/hand and we wont discuss his b/hand slice? which has gone off again since the USO?

I agree with this slight injury to his shoulder and that he hasnt practice hard for weeks.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 06:09 PM

imjimmy I remember the days when his b/hand was Flat as a Tack? Hmmmm

Posted by uh-oh 11/05/2010 at 06:11 PM

The juicing is catching up to Rafael! uh-oh!

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 06:12 PM

Yes though I am so happy he did enough juicing when he got his Golden career Slam

Thank goodness for that.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 06:13 PM

Master Ace Thanks for the match schedule and for the Fed Cup

Posted by lilscot 11/05/2010 at 06:16 PM

Colette: 5:56 p.m.

No, it was quite funny actually, and as AM and I were just saying, laughter really IS the best medicine. Although I'm sure there wasn't too much laughter going on in the plane, except maybe nervous laughter. :) Glad to hear everyone is okay.

You can make my head spin around anytime my lady! :)

Posted by Colette 11/05/2010 at 06:19 PM

"Glad to hear everyone is okay."

Me too, Lilscot.

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 06:19 PM

Hmmm I am flying Qantas next week?

Oh well thats life in the fast lane

Though I have to go to my travel agent Qantas has made a error on my return from the AO next year

Like I need more shopping time.Pfft to them.

Posted by mandy 11/05/2010 at 06:26 PM

You got to hand it to Tio Tony. He really has a mastermind, always one step ahead. Seeing the storm gathering with all the doping talk about his protege,fueled by his serve speed performance in the US Open, he comes up with a shoulder tendinitis this time around. So nobody would be able to inquire at the WTF why Nadal's new found serve is not so new found anymore but back to normal. Obviously is the tendinitis, the excuses are ready for the drubbing he's going to get there. Brilliant!

Posted by Roddick fan from Virginia 11/05/2010 at 06:41 PM

Congrats Andy and good luck tomorrow.

Posted by pogiako 11/05/2010 at 06:49 PM

I think Rafael will not play London. His goal now is to win a calendar slam. He has a good chance of doing it if he does not overplay from now on till next year. He does not do well in the YEC anyway. Why take chances of his ailing left shoulder.

Posted by pogiako 11/05/2010 at 07:00 PM


You said it right, mandy!!!!

Posted by Tim (Moonpies lead to violence!) 11/05/2010 at 07:02 PM

frannkly if i never hear the word 'fatigue' again re NADS it would be most welcome indeed ... his management sure know how to milk media sympathy for all its worth ill give them that ...

Posted by Grant 11/05/2010 at 07:07 PM

"You got to hand it to Tio Tony. He really has a mastermind, always one step ahead."

They said he was mad, but when his weather machine is completed they'll pay. THEY'LL ALL PAY!!!

Posted by manuelsantanafan 11/05/2010 at 07:13 PM

In 1969, when Rod Laver won the Slam, he was 30-31 (birthdate is in August-September).

Laver went 106-16, I believe.

That's 122 matches, according to my calculations. (How many matches has the 24-year old Rafa played this year? Around 80?)

I don't remember the Rocket whining about fatigue back then or any of Laver's fans cluck-cluck-clucking away about poor, tired, shot-his-wad Rocket.

Just one of the many reasons Rafa will have to accomplish a lot more--a lot more--to legitimately be in any serious GOAT discussion with Tilden, Pancho, the Rocket, and Federer.

Posted by GB 11/05/2010 at 07:39 PM

AM: Rafa hasn't competed in weeks, but he *always* trains hard, no?:) That's part of what his doctor was worrying about. According to Rafa, it was precisely pushing too hard in training that's the problem:
“a small case of tendinitis in my left shoulder which came about through forcing my serve too much during training this week.”

Posted by Dreamers 11/05/2010 at 07:51 PM

When Nadal said after the US Open, he was targeting the WTF, it was clear....

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 08:05 PM

Hi everybody

No panic Rafa fans. He won RG, Wimbledon and USO and he will be ready for London, his last goal to finish an excelent year
His doctor says better to rest for one week because his shoulder but nothing serious, just precaution, very smart.

Posted by Tuulia 11/05/2010 at 08:16 PM

No panic indeed Carol. Much better to not play with a small issue than to play and make it bigger like he has done in the past. People are supposed to learn from their mistakes after all. I was very unhappy with him playing with an injury even an important tournament (like USO 2007, which he admitted afterwards he probably shouldn't have played), nevermind something relatively unimportant like Paris Masters. I'm happy he withdrew even if the problem is a minor one like he says. He reqovered from soon enough from his Queen's 2007 shoulder issue, this might be something similar.

Posted by Tuulia 11/05/2010 at 08:19 PM

Geez... I meant Queen's 2006, obviously.

Posted by Tuulia 11/05/2010 at 08:22 PM

... and "recovered"... sigh... not that anyone seems to be around to witness...

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 08:26 PM

Hi Tuulia, I'm thinking the same like you. Paris is relatively unimportant and if he has a little disconfort in his shoulder better to rest. We can see that he doesn't want to make more mistakes like in the past and he really wants to do something good in London and he will.

Posted by Tuulia 11/05/2010 at 08:33 PM

Yup. He already mentioned a minor serve-related shoulder/arm problem in Asia, this is probably just the same or similar thing. It's not even surprising when you change something like a serve just a little bit. Takes time to get used to it. And in retrospect, thank goodness he took things easy in Toronto and Cincy, phew - he said he took serve practise easy then... :)

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 08:45 PM

Tuulia, I always say that everything has the good and the bad part. Rafa has a great forehand and backhand but definitely he had to improve the serve but like you say it takes time to be ready for the changes. The good part is that he knows how to do it even if he has to "suffer" a little bit:-)

Posted by imjimmy 11/05/2010 at 08:46 PM

""Just one of the many reasons Rafa will have to accomplish a lot more--a lot more--to legitimately be in any serious GOAT discussion with Tilden, Pancho, the Rocket, and Federer. ""

+1.
Just one thing MSF: Sampras needs to be in that list.

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 08:54 PM

So tomorrow Ferrer-Soderling and Granollers-Simon. Maybe a final between Spaniards? Anyway I bet for Ferrer

Posted by manuelsantanafan 11/05/2010 at 08:59 PM

imjimmy:

Sampras certainly accomplished a lot, but I believe he's a bit below the others I mentioned because they were better clay court players (relative to their competition) than was Sampras. Of course, I'd agree that Rafa has a ways to go to get to the Sampras/Borg/Rosewall tier.

In any case, let's hope Rafa and the other 7 are in tip top form at the YECs and highly motivated. I'd like to see some fiercely fought, high level tennis this year--which I didn't see much of last year in the YEC Rafa matches.

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 09:12 PM

Anyway Paris is going to tell us who is playing well and could be a threat to Rafa

Vamos HEAT!!!!!!!!

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 09:16 PM

Hi Tullia and Carol

I am not over worried at all

Anyway its a indoor synthetic surface not my cup of tea at all

GB I agree with your post

Rafa has said after his Asian swing that London was important for him and he wanted to do well

Anyway other players have cited fatique etc

No big deal for me

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 09:25 PM

Hi AM, yeah, it was a smart decision. I don't not why but after the USO I had in my mind that Rafa maybe he wouldn't play in Paris. Remember that I did bet you about a dinner In Mallorca or a Spa day? LOL

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 09:29 PM

Carol

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

I was having a Bad Moment ok

I will have to find work to pay for that

Can I pay it off no?


Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 09:34 PM

Hahahaha AM,, well, be ready with a Credit Card, then I will pay the tip, LOL

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 09:36 PM

Carol You are a Generous Soul

I have to go to Paris and Rome next year to see Rafa

Please have some mercy on me.

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 09:45 PM

OK AM, under that circumstance I'm going to be good and forgive the dinner and the Spa, but next time......not!! (sniff)

Posted by Aussiemarg,Madame President,Dear Wayne is Free,VamosWayne 11/05/2010 at 09:47 PM

Carol I always thought you were a forgiving and most wonderful person no?

Posted by Carol 11/05/2010 at 09:54 PM

Miami is losing. I know that many of you don't like LeBron but Wade is my favorite NBA player and even if he would play with another team I'd always be with him. I like Bosh a lot too

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