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One Non-Slam Wonder 03/03/2008 - 7:00 PM

Watercooler2 By now, all (or almost all) of you know that Roger Federer lost to Andy Murray in Dubai today, or tomorrow, or yesterday, or whatever time it is over that way. In any event, at 6-all in the first set, Tomahawk Perrotta called me into his office to "watch" some of the match on his computer. You know, the image was actually of fairly high quality - it was light years better, in any event, than sitting there watching the numbers change in a live-scoring set-up. In case this streaming video will be available for matches later on, here's the link.

From the bits I saw and the comments left at the previous post by some of you, the most "disturbing" aspect of this loss by Federer to Murray is the apparent lack of enthusiasm and/or sharpness by Federer. Let's not forget that this was not just Dubai, the tournament that has wholeheartedly embraced the "pay to play" scheme of the ATP and WTA (and boy, do those Dubai folks pay!), it's also Federer's "home" tournament.

Federer may not feel as much affection for the United Arab Emirates as he does for his native Switzerland (although I don't recall him ever making a point of it, either way), but he has extolled the virtues of Dubai on numerous occasions, and happily described why it is such a wonderful place for him to train, and spend his down time. I imagine The Mighty Fed has cordial relations with the local bigs, too, so the loss must sting a little more than it would if this were merely Buenos Aires, Paris, or Tokyo. But this is Dubai, and that's like Lindsay losing in southern California, or Venus or Serena losing in Miami.

Of course, that won't count extra in the rankings, and that's a good thing for TMF. With his lead over Rafael Nadal right around 400 points, the gap is fairly small. But then, Nadal has an awful lot to defend in the immediate future - even before he gets to the clay-court season (remember, he's defending winner's points at Indian Wells, on hard courts). So I wouldn't make any assumptions. In fact, my gut feeling is that the rankings race will be extremely tight going into the second major of the year at Roland Garros, which could make things really interesting at the third major - and beyond - this year.

I filed a post for ESPN earlier today, on the extraordinary results kicked up by the ATP this weekend, when two of the three main tour events were won by Steve Darcis and Sergiy Stakhovsky. This is just too delicious not to speculate:  what might a betting man have won if he had wagered on a Darcis/Stakhovsky "Daily Double?"

Actually, the results made me go back over some of the more unexpected results of the past few years, looking for other relative unknowns who had performed similar feats. What struck me is that if you scroll through the annual results, it's remarkable how few of the tournaments -  in an era awash in events, with no off-season to speak of - are actually won by off-the-radar players. I was expecting names to trip me up far more often than they did - hail, even though Wayne Arthurs won just one tournament in his career (a surprise, to me), he just seemed to be around, seemed to be a presence, in a way that Stakhovsky  is not.

Of course, Darcis last year was in the same boat Stakhovsky now occupies, when he won Amersfoort (only his second ATP event). But after his performance in Memphis, it's safe to say that Darcis has become a household name (at least in TennisWorld households), at least in the sense that Almagro, Massu or Robredo are such.

All that got me thinking of a truly rare category of player - the One Non-Slam Wonder, a character who certainly deserves a place in the TW pantheon, if not the International Tennis Hall of Fame. I went through the ATP list of retired players, and came  up with 110 ONSWs (which may be off a bit either way, as I'm notorious for being a lousy counter) - but that's in the entire history of the Open era.

Pmac Many, many of those ONSWs took titles in places like Casablanca, Bermuda, Tulsa, Hilversum, Taipei and other relatively isolated outposts of the game, although all of them were official ATP tournaments. I am sure there is some margin for error in the ATP's stats; for example, somehow semi-iconic Dennis Ralston is listed as a ONSW, getting credit for just one tournament win, WCT Los Angeles, in 1970 (Actually, the ITF site concurs). And so is Manolo Santana, who won Wimbledon and the US Open, which makes me think that Grand Slams were left out of this record, on the grounds that the majors do their own book keeping.

If you look at Felix Mantilla's entry in the ATP media guide's list of tournament winners of teh Open era, you'll see his name followed by: ???????????????. I know Mantilla won 10-plus ATP titles; I guess somebody just forgot to fact-check poor Felix's record (but that too is available at the ITF site).

The ATP has 60-plus tournaments for 2008; it's hard to pin this down, but let's assume that that over the Open era, the average number of tournaments per year has been 40. That means there were 1600 tournament winners, among whom only 110 were ONSWs! Can you say, Elite?

So let's look at some of the players who won only one singles event in their ATP careers, and remember, players who are currently active - like Stakhovsky - are not in this discussion:

- Matt Anger was a USC standout and Tracy Austin's first real boyfriend; the only title he won was Johannesburg in 1985.

- Pablo Arraya was once ubiquitous on the tour - the title he took was Bordeaux in 1983.

- Jeremy Bates: Long before Andy Murray or Tim Henman sparked hope in the UK, Bates stepped up and won Seoul in 1994.

- Butch Buchholz is one of the seminal figures in the Open era (as a political activist and tournament promoter) gets credit only for winning Atlanta in 1969. Can it be true?

- Bob Carmichael: The legendary Aussie called "nailbags", who quit his job as a carpenter in his mid-20s to try his hand at pro tennis, won Auckland in 1971.

- Sergio Casal: As good as this dude (who's now a partner in the famous Casal-Sanchez Tennis Academy) was in doubs, he won only one singles title, Florence in 1985.

- Owen Davidson: Another fixture among the legends of tennis, and a regular mixed doubles partner of Billie Jean King's, struggled and only managed to win Surbiton in 1973.

- Eddie Edwards won Adelaide in 1985. Who the hail is Eddie Edwards?

- Juan Gisbert was an incredibly handsome and well-mannered Spaniard; Gisbert won his only tournament, Shreverport, in 1975.

- Tom Gullikson won Newport in 1985 and that was it.

- Paul Haarhuis won just one singles title: Jakarta, 1995.

- Carlos Kirmayr (who would later coach Gabriela Sabatini) and Thomaz Koch were both Brazilian ONSWs. Take that, Guga!

- John Lloyd remains very popular, he's a former husband of Chris Evert, but he never added to his lone singles title, won at Merion in 1974.

- Patrick McEnroe, our Davis Cup captain, won just one singles title: Sydney (outdoors)l in 1995.

- Ray Moore was another player turned move and shaker and tournament promoter (he and Charlie Pasarell founded the  Indian Wells event), but he won only Berlin, in 1969.

- Nduka Odizor was a much-loved Nigeria player (nickname: the Duke) who never lost faith in his career even though he won only Taipei n 1983. He went on to become a man of the cloth.

- Claudio Pistolesi, once considered the best Italian prospect since Adriano Panatta, managed just one win: Bari in 1987.

- Haroon Rahim, straight out of Pakistan (by way of UCLA) won Little Rock in 1974. Dude played sweet serve and volley tennis and had an Afro worthy of Hendrix.

- Sargis Sargsian won a title, too! Newport in 1997.

- Howard Schoenfield was a junior of legendary ability, but he had some private struggles that kept him from winning anything beyond Tulsa in 1980.

- Vince Van Patten got a lot of pub when he was playing, but the fact is he won just one event: Tokyo in 1981.

- Werner Zirngibl, the scourge of spell-checkers everywhere, was triumphant at Brussels in 1978.

Anybody care to figure out how many more ONSW's are out there, still trying to get over the hump on the ATP tour by winning a second event?

This will be your thread for general tennis discussion until I get back to you tomorrow. I won't be posting until later in the day, because I'm going to visit with Lindsay Davenport and Tracy Austin tomorrow morning. But I'll post on that tomorrow afternoon. 

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Posted by svelterogue 03/03/2008 at 07:09 PM

hi pete :)

i read about darcis' win in the flemish news today and i was absolutely thrilled for him. he has become the new belgian #1, jumping into the top 50, edging out olivier rochus, who is #62 (am just quoting the "facts" from memory so if i am off, my apologies). i thought that after his win at amersfort last year that i would see more atp matches live as long as one of the belgians are involved. well, it looks like the liegeois, both justine and steve (people born or who live in liege/luik), are making belgian tennis rock at the moment! you go, liège/luik! (liège is the french name; luik is the flemish name --- just one city through which the river meuse runs)

Posted by Rob York 03/03/2008 at 07:14 PM

Haarhuis and Pat Mac only won one title? Amazing.

Posted by jb 03/03/2008 at 07:19 PM

How fun - Pete - you get to visit with Linds and Tracey? Make sure Lindsay knows she totally rocks! (She's prolly figured that out though...)

Even if your count is WAY off, that's pretty freakin' crazy stats there - you'd think there would be more. HOpefully by the time I get home some intrepid number cruncher would have ferretted out some more details for us. (I'm even worse at number crunching than you - I move too rapidly from 'over 10' to a bzillion.)

Posted by Sher 03/03/2008 at 07:22 PM

Pete I just saw your article on ESPN about Clijster's biological clock not ticking at 24. I realize that our opinions on women differ, shall we say wildly? But you must be aware that women's primary child-bearing age is 'till 25. After that age the risk of complications with pregnancy rises. So yeah, pretty much ticking there, biologically speaking.

Posted by Sherlock 03/03/2008 at 07:25 PM

Patrick only won one title?? Wow. Never would have guessed that.

Here's an oldie but a goodie. Did my favorite laid-back California dude, Derrick Rostagno, ever win a title? I can't remember. I think he's more famous for the near upset of Becker with the match point net cord. I enjoyed watching him play though. A cool style about him.

Posted by Sher 03/03/2008 at 07:30 PM

Now that I've finished reading...I wonder if we can make a graph of this, with standard deviation and median and stuff over the Open era. There'd be an average number of non-slam-events won, and the highest the lowest. Then we could see what falls within short distance from average, and what results are outstanding. It would have to be done over the finishes careers only, of course. Still maybe if the shortage of ONSW surprises even such students of the game as yourself there might be more we could find in these statistics...

Posted by Sher 03/03/2008 at 07:31 PM

Now that I've finished reading...I wonder if we can make a graph of this, with standard deviation and median and stuff over the Open era. There'd be an average number of non-slam-events won, and the highest the lowest. Then we could see what falls within short distance from average, and what results are outstanding. It would have to be done over the finishes careers only, of course. Still maybe if the shortage of ONSW surprises even such students of the game as yourself there might be more we could find in these statistics...

Posted by Sher 03/03/2008 at 07:32 PM

whoops. sorry for double post.

Posted by Sherlock 03/03/2008 at 07:33 PM

Woo hoo! Wikipedia to the rescue! Go Derrick!!

Rostagno turned professional in 1986. He won one top-level singles title (at New Haven in 1990) and one tour doubles title (at Tampa in 1993).

At the 1989 U.S. Open, Rostagno had a match point in his second round encounter with Boris Becker, who won that point on a lucky net cord passing shot and eventually the match 1-6, 6-7, 6-3, 7-6, 6-3, en route to his lone U.S. Open title.

At Wimbledon in 1990, Rostagno defeated John McEnroe in straight sets in the first round. At Wimbledon in 1991, Rostagno defeated ninth ranked Pete Sampras in four sets in the second round and Connors in straight sets in the third round.

Rostagno finished his career with a 3-2 win-loss record versus McEnroe, winning their last three matches, and a 2-3 record versus Connors, winning their last two matches. Against other top players, Rostagno was 2-1 versus Sampras, 1-0 versus Yannick Noah, 1-1 versus Mats Wilander, 2-3 versus Lendl, 1-2 versus Becker, 3-6 versus Jim Courier, 0-1 versus Michael Chang, 0-1 versus Todd Martin, 0-2 versus Andre Agassi, and 0-4 versus Stefan Edberg.

Posted by Sher 03/03/2008 at 07:33 PM

this part i did find amusing:

[It seems that so many women today don't exactly take the money and run. They take the money and walk, because running requires too much energy.]


Posted by rudy3 03/03/2008 at 07:34 PM

Feli the Gorgeous and Hott Sauce Verdasco are both ONSW's, with lone titles in Salzberg and Valencia, respectively. Making them the most attractive ONSW's to date.

By far.

Posted by KP 03/03/2008 at 07:43 PM

Pete, the atp only tracks 'open era' results(& not entirely that well imo) so that is why Santana's pre Open era slams are not listed on the ATP site.

Surprised you didn't mention maybe the most memorable of all ONSW's: the 1996 Hamburg Masters Series Champion, Roberto Carreterro(who won it as a qualifier)

Cliff Drysdale predicted that he would eventually be top 10 during espn's broadcast of that event. I liked your interview with him, but its pretty funny how often he predicts great things for anyone who does well on a match he calls(I'm still waiting for Megan Shaugnessy & Paul Henri Mathieu to be 'top 5')
I guess Cliff knows he has to hype the hell out of all players in order to keep any casual viewer from chnaging the channel.

Posted by KP 03/03/2008 at 07:58 PM

Also that Vince Van Patten win in Tokyo '81 was a pretty big win, he beat the world #1 McEnroe at that event. And Tokyo was one of the top indoor events of that time(certainly the equivalent of a masters series today)

Someone should look up Newport, it probably has the most ONSW's. Which isn't surprising considering there are many challengers that get better fields than Newport.

Here are some of the ONSW's from just Newport:

Posted by Dunlop Maxply 03/03/2008 at 07:59 PM

Appropos of nothing, Carlos Kirmayr had the earliest racket preparation of anyone I ever saw. Not the forced, exaggerated, stiff, obviously coached, early racket preparation you see in the younger age divisions of junior tennis, and not the once in a lifetime Agassi like good timing. Its just the guy was never rushed on a shot, even if you hit it at him at over 100 mph.

In other news, I once, to my everlasting chagrin, got into an argument with Pablo Arraya on a line call which resulted in permanent damage being done to the relationship of a certain California school and the Univ. of Arkansas.

Posted by 03/03/2008 at 08:07 PM

As a Federer fan, I have been left a little alarmed today. Not by the match or the subsequent loss, but due to his interview afterwards. He said the following:

“I like to win matches by not waiting for the other guy's mistakes. I don’t think he’s changed his game a whole lot since I played him in the Bangkok final. Not that I’m disappointed but I really would have thought he would have changed it in some ways.

"It sort of works for him but he’s going to have to grind very hard for the next few years if he keeps playing this way. He stands way far behind on the court and that means you’ve got to do a lot of running. He tends to wait a lot for an opponent’s mistake.

“I gave him the mistakes today but over a 15-year career, you want to look to win a point more often than wait for the guy to miss. That’s what served me well but who knows, he may surprise us and do it for 20 years.”

As I said, I am a big Federer fan and hate criticising him, but to say that Andy Murray's game has not improved over the past two and a half years is just insane. The quotes also seem to lack a bit of respect towards the man who has just beaten him. I really hope that this is just a grumpy day and we see the normal Fed back in Indian Wells, I would hate any sign that he is a little concerned about the matches he seems to be losing more regularly.

Posted by Andrew 03/03/2008 at 08:10 PM

DM: nice to hear from you. Drop me a line, I'm visiting the Southern California area in a couple of weeks time.

Posted by JillfromNY 03/03/2008 at 08:16 PM

Pete: Please no more ESPN columns on Clijsters or Mauresmo. Because you are clueless when it comes to those two. Clijsters said for years that she wanted to be a young mom just like her mother was with her. And Amelie is simply having a mid-life crisis. Questioning what she is going to do with her life at 27 (which is considered over-the-hill for a tennis player) is not loony. It's appropriate. And I just think calling her comments "graceless" was too harsh for a player who was dragged into controversy by the perpetually graceless Henin. And the way Amelie handled that mess will always warrant my respect.

Looking forward to your next column. Hope it includes lots of quotes from Linds and Tracy on all the hot topics in the sport.

Posted by Andrew 03/03/2008 at 08:16 PM

Anon Federer fan at 8:07pm: Federer didn't say that Murray hasn't improved his game - he said that (in his opinion) he hasn't changed it.

Still not seen the full press transcript, which always gives you context. I honestly haven't seen disrespect to Murray. He may even think he's trying to be helpful - Hewitt had a run at the top (as we know) for 18 months, but six years later he isn't really in the mix any more.

I myself don't think of Murray as a grinder - he has much too much change of pace and spin for that, plus the big serve.

Posted by KP 03/03/2008 at 08:19 PM

some other notable ONSW's:

Larry Stefanki, 1985 La Quinta(this topic really shows how much the calendar changes over the years, I'm coming across so many events that no longer exist today. who knows if Memphis or Dubai will even be around 20 years from now)

Jim Pugh 1989 Newport

Gianluca Pozzi 1991 Brisbane

Shuzo Matsuoka 1992 Seoul

Alex O'Brien 1996 New Haven

Hernan Gumy 1996 Santiago

Hicham Arazi(!) 1997 Casablanca

Scott Draper 1998 Queen's

Albert Portas 2001 Hamburg Masters Series

Max Mirnyi 2003 Rotterdam

Posted by Rosangel 03/03/2008 at 08:20 PM

Andrew: by any chance are you visiting Indian Wells again?

Posted by Rosangel 03/03/2008 at 08:24 PM

KP: keep up the good work - your posts are always illuminating - you always come across as a really knowledgeable follower of the game. I'd be very interested to know where you are located, and whether you play the game yourself.

Posted by Andrew 03/03/2008 at 08:26 PM

Rosangel: indeed. For a longer period too. I intend to do much reporting while there

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 08:33 PM

Tennis Channel Open evening session is about to begin on TC with Leif Shiras and Jimmy Arias. Malisse/Ginepri match to begin shortly.

Posted by FoT 03/03/2008 at 08:33 PM

Well, this loss has really got me pumped for Indian Wells and Miami. I'm sad he's out of Dubai, because I want to see him more. I think when he said he was "rusty", he was exactly correct. At the ATP site, it is showing points are counting for Roger in only 15 events. That is too low. Roger needs to play more.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:35 PM

Andrew- I hope you are going to IW - would love to meet up
also,DM - great to hear from you
and same question - are you and your son coming out to the desert
we must start a post to figure out who will be there and when

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:40 PM

Pete - as you are meeting with those two SoCal girls , I assume that means you are heading this way as well

Andrew - when will be you be at IW ?
so Ginepri/Malisse is starting - but first we had to see some professional Wii players
now there is a niche worthy of coverage on a sports network
That ranks up there with hot dog eating contests as a real ratings booster
good grief TTC - just show tennis and forget this other drivel

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 08:41 PM

Ginepri to serve

Ginepri holds at 30 assisted by a FH winner in the right corner at 15-all.

Malisse to serve 0-1

Posted by KP 03/03/2008 at 08:46 PM

Ah, Leif Shiras, just missed out on the ONSW club, lost a 3 setter to Mac in the '84 Queen's Final(which was the only final of his career)

thanks for the kind words, Rosangel, I like your posts too.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 08:46 PM

Do agree with not showing the arcade room before the match.

Malisse holds at 30

Ginepro holds at 15 with a good serve.

X-man to serve at 1-2

Posted by Papo 03/03/2008 at 08:46 PM

Here's a headline from the Eurosport website:

"Tennis ace Murray magic beats Federer"

He didn't just beat Federer, he MAGIC BEAT him! Take that!


Like I said, the Brittish press will be insufferable for the forseeable future talking about "The Chosen One."

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:47 PM

looking at my tv - there are so few people in the stands
looks like only the players and the linespeople to be honest

well I do hear a little applause - they must be sitting up higher in the stadium

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:49 PM

and they just said that the Lleyton Hewitt/ Marat Safin match up will be one of the best first round matchups ever
guess they missed that memo about the Dubai matchup this morning , huh?

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:53 PM

speaking of one title winners- has Ginepri won any tournaments?
I think he has won at least one time

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 08:55 PM

Malisse holds at 30 as Corina does an interview with Darren Cahill.

Malisse breaks with a BH CC passing shot by Robby at the net after Robby chased down a drop shot at the net.

Malisse leads 3-2.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 08:56 PM

Bueller? anyone ?Bueller?

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:00 PM

Robby won twice at 2003 Newport and 2005 Indianapolis

Malisse holds. Missed game.

Malisse breaks at 30. Robby making lots of errors.

Malisse to serve for the set at 5-2.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:04 PM

TW will come alive when Hewitt plays Safin next.

Malisse holds at 15 to win the set 6-2. Robby challenged the set point and the serve was barely in.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:04 PM

Thanks, Schwab
so he does not qualify for the one title club

things are not going his way tonight
as Malisse takes it 6-2

does Malisse look like he has put on a few pounds to anyone else
He seems bulkier to me

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:07 PM

you are probably right, Schwab
Safin and Hewitt do bring them out of the woodwork

Posted by rudy3 03/03/2008 at 09:14 PM

Spadea Ain't Afraid of Ya has a win at Scottsdale 05, which is now the Las Vegas TTC promo tournament.

Making Vinny S the only Rapping ONSW

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:17 PM

and the world can use more of those , rudy 3 :)

Robby is having a problem similar to my game today
He just is not putting them away when he has the chance , he keeps giving Malisse a chance
been there, done that

Posted by Hart 03/03/2008 at 09:19 PM

Hello, all!
Just dropping in quickly to say hello, happy monday, yay live tennis (even if it's not dubai), :( federer, and I hope you all enjoy hewitt-safin (which, sadly, given the dearth of live tennis, I am going to miss)


Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:22 PM

that's a shame , hart
I know you are going to IW - right
but , I think you said it would be second week
I will be there the first weekend -
so if I am correct, then we will miss each other this time

Posted by Hart 03/03/2008 at 09:25 PM

i just got my IW tickets--my brother, my dad and I are all heading out. I have tickets for the 1st Saturday and the 2nd Thursday.
so hopefully we will connect!

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:26 PM

Ginepri holds to start set 2. Missed game again.

Ginepri breaks at 30 with a FH DTL that the X-man couldn't get back. At 30-all, Ginepri made a good BH return in the corner that Malisse could not get it over the net.

Ginepri holds after 11 deuces. 26 pts were played. On one BP chance that X had. Robby hit a 2nd serve at 78 mph that X did not get it over the net. Game finally ended when Robby did a BH slice that X got to but could not lift over net.

Malisse to serve at 6-2,0-3. Corina to interview again with someone discussing cancer issues. Yellow shirts to be given away Wednesday.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:28 PM

we will definitely have to connect
feel free to email me - and we will figure out something
maybe a lunch break or a dinner
or even a few drinks somewhere
last year, Pete found a local watering hole that became a TW gathering place
I am sure he will try to do the same this year , if his work permits it

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:31 PM

Ginepri breaks at 15.

Malisse breaks at love as he flubbed an OH at 0-30 and missed an easy FH at the net at 0-40.

Malisse to serve at 6-2,1-4.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:32 PM

Meant to say Ginepri flubbed an OH....

Posted by TennisChica (psyched about this week's tennis!) 03/03/2008 at 09:32 PM

"and they just said that the Lleyton Hewitt/ Marat Safin match up will be one of the best first round matchups ever
guess they missed that memo about the Dubai matchup this morning , huh?"

Beth, you forget, this is the TC afterall. Are they aware of other ATP tournaments?

Posted by Hart 03/03/2008 at 09:33 PM

beth--great--i will definitely be in contact.
but now I have to run--i have clippers tickets tonight (ummm...yay?...I love basketball, but man, the clips are kinda pathetic...)
glad to know that some TWers will be able to connect.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:33 PM

oh goody
they plan on showing us more video games throughout the week
give me a break

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:36 PM

Malisse holds easily.

Ginepri holds at love assisteb by a drop shot and a FH put away at 30-love.

Malisse to serve 6-2,2-5.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:36 PM

Tennis chica- so true
and nowhere is self promotion more valued than in Vegas:)

hart - great - Jenn will be there too - enjoy the game?:) but , yeah , the Clippers suck Look forward to hearing from you

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:40 PM

well- except maybe Hollywood

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:48 PM

Video games are essential to TC Open. Think I heard Soderling w/d due to shoulder earlier on their coverage.

Why do they have to show other things beside live tennis. We missed 3 points.

Malisse holds after 2 deuces. Robby had a good BH pass DTL but it hit the high part of the net.

Jimmy Arias said that Robby will have a difficult time holding and guess what...

Ginepri rallies from 15-40 to take the set, 6-3. Robby was assisted by a nice defensive lob at deuce where X hit a FH long to set up set point

Malisse to serve to begin set 3 tied with Robby 6-2,3-6.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:52 PM

Schwab - yep - nothing like video games and hospitality suites to make up for live tennis
I know I feel fulfilled because of it
There are more people in the hospitality suite, than at the match
I also heard that Soderling withdrew
well he has played a lot of tennis over the past two weeks
but- well - mean girl that I am - cannot say I feel bad for him

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 09:56 PM

they also just showed Andre Agassi
who I have to say is looking pretty fit
but - is it just me - does it look like Andre shaves his entire body
or at least, his arms and legs
I mean - when he was young - and had hair on his head
seems to me his arms ,legs and chest had hair as well
Now - not so much

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 09:56 PM

Corina another off-court report from the hospitality room.

Fergis Murphy is the chair umpire.

Malisse holds after 3 deuces. Malisse challenged a good return by Ginepri but to no avail.

Ginepri to serve 2-6,6-3,0-1.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:05 PM

Ginepri holds rallying from 15-40. X man won a nice point at the net to give him the chances to break.

Hopefully, Safin/Hewitt will create a buzz. At the moment, the crowd is quiet due to seeing all the errors by both men.

Malisse holds rallying from 30-40 capped off by a FH winner. Robby missed a tough volley at the net hitting the ball long.

Robby to serve at 1-2 in set 3.

Posted by jb 03/03/2008 at 10:07 PM

beth - i think your correct about andre - shaving i mean.

yawn. i'm tired. sadly - i think i'm going to miss the next match. Need to be up and in early tomorrow.

I do NOT like the matchups this week... murray, fed, dima/reeshard, hewitt/safin, and this - robby / xman. sigh.

oh well.

awe - b-cup on my tv....

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:13 PM

Now, Baghdatis is being interviewed by Corina which is going on too long.

Ginepri holds at 15 capped off by a drop shot followed by a top spin lob.

Ginepri breaks at 30 when Malisse hit a BH long. He was assisted at 15-30 when he won a baseline rally with Malisse.

Ginepri to serve 2-6,6-3,3-2.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:23 PM

No challenges remaining for X. 2nd racquet by X that broke the string.

Ginepri holds rallying from 15-40 capped off by a drop shot that X got to but could not lift it over the net. Also, in that game, Robby hit a nice CC FH that wrong footed X after X made a good return.

Malisse holds at 30 even though Robby had a nice step in and return winner off X's serve at 40-15.

Ginepri to serve at 2-6,6-3,4-3.

Posted by Andrew Miller 03/03/2008 at 10:28 PM

I agree with Master Bodo about Federer. Seems like the Shadow Federer has taken over this year. Federer looked ,well, he just did not PLAY like the normal Federer! The guy has to channel an Agassi and quickly, because clay season is almost here.

Shave your head Fed and get back in the game!

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:29 PM

Malisse breaks at love as Ribby makes 4 errors. Tied at 4 in set 3.

Ginepri breaks at 15 as Malisse made errors.

Robby to serve for the match at 2-6,6-3,5-4.

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:36 PM

Ginepri holds after being down a BP assited by an ace on the BP. Robby tried an ill-advised shot on his 1st match point.

Ginepri wins 2-6,6-3,6-4.

Safin/Hewitt next on TC.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 10:42 PM

jb-rest up - lots of good tennis in the next month or so

had to step away for dinner - but I am back
and ready for Safin/Hewitt

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 10:44 PM

somehow - the image of Safin in Las Vegas is not one that conjures up great focus for tennis to me
I can see how the Cap'n could be distracted in Vegas

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 10:47 PM

Safin looked nervous in his interview.

"Cap'n could be distracted in Vegas"

*off to check flights to Vegas*

Posted by Aussie Ange 03/03/2008 at 10:50 PM

Can we give Soderling a break, I watched him over the w/e on tv and to me he is rather good looking especially in his black shirt. I liked his game moving into the net and his groundies were pretty big. As I didn't see the incident against Nadal I have nothing against him.

Don't know who to go for in the next match, I really would love Safin to win but I think Hewitt will take it in a close match. More scoreboard watching this week.

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 10:51 PM

course, the Cap'n can be distracted in almost any place he goes

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 10:55 PM

ummm.. nope sorry , Aussie Ange
no sympathy or breaks for Soderling from me
he just rubs me the wrong way
from both the Rafa incident and other times I have seen him
I did not find him appealing in any color shirt

but that is just my opinion

now - WTF - the tv screen just stopped mid point - just as the match was starting tonight

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 10:56 PM

Hewitt to serve

TC freezes on the first point of the match. Wow...

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 10:56 PM

Hello? WTF? did everyone's screen go off midpoint and now commercials?

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 10:57 PM

what is going on in tennis this year? it's the Twilight Zone-- only Masha is playing like a dominant player-- qualifier winners, top players losing early-- what the hail? LOL

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 10:58 PM

is there a stream to watch Rusty v Marat? I'm at work still- no TC here :(

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 10:58 PM

how ya been ?

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 10:59 PM

AA - go for it, it looks like there is a short line ;-)

Posted by Sam 03/03/2008 at 11:02 PM

"I can see how the Cap'n could be distracted in Vegas "

He could be distracted anywhere ...

Posted by ndk 03/03/2008 at 11:04 PM

Are you watching Sam? Despite the fact that both of their games' don't really interest you? :-)

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 11:04 PM

Hewitt holds after Safin rallies from 40-15 to deuce.

Safin holds at 30 capped by an ace. At 30-15, Safin hit a nice 2HBH DTL. Also, Hewitt ripped a FH return by Safin at 15-0

Malisse/Ginepri had a total of 88 errors in that 3 set yawner.

Hewitt holds at love assisteb by a nice volley at the net.

Safin to serve 1-2.

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 11:05 PM

hey beth!! I have been working mucho mucho! we finally moved so I have a new office- yipee! and my sister just moved in with me and we're having so much fun living together and my Mom is visiting-- how are you? IW's coming up soon!!

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 11:05 PM

true , Sam
but what happens in Vegas ...
you know

still, they are playing some good points so far
but Safin, does not cover the court like he used to

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 11:05 PM

ahhh...[big sigh]...presented with the opportunity, I would perform as well as the TC and freeze mid-point and before I know it, the game is over ;-)

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 11:08 PM

jbrad - looked for you at the Memphis tournament
but sounds like you did not make it there , since you have been busy
I am so ready for IW - I could use a break
Missie's actual birthday is tomorrow - so we are busy preparing for "the gale celebration"
She needs a break worse than me - she took the SAT's this Saturday

great pass by Hewitt to get the first break

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 11:09 PM

Shout out to Dementieva-- the last set and a half of the Dubai Final I watched- both women played very well-- Elena was ridiculous from the baseline- ouch her power and speed-- and Kuzzie looked good too

Posted by Sam 03/03/2008 at 11:10 PM

ndk: I tried to watch, but Safin's shirt seared my retinas. ;-)

Posted by ndk 03/03/2008 at 11:11 PM

Better than the bumble bee outfit IMO, Sam

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 11:12 PM

Tennis chica- don't sell yourself short
I will not hear of it
TW is populated with terrific women
that these guys would really love
If they were so lucky as to meet you

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 11:13 PM

come one Safin! shake it off!

Posted by Schwab 03/03/2008 at 11:13 PM

Did you go to Memphis to watch LD?

Hewitt breaks at 15 capped off by a CC FH passing shot past Safin.

Cahill is coaching Hewitt this week while Roche is probably back in Australia.

Hewitt holds rallying from 15-40 capped off by an ace. Safin earned his 2 BP chances by hitting a nice BH return DTL on a 2nd serve at 15-30.

Safin to serve at 1-4.

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 11:14 PM

beth- I gave my Memphis tix away-- but I was there in spirit :)

I need a Rafa tourney like gumbo needs pepper

Posted by Sam 03/03/2008 at 11:14 PM

ndk: Marginally better.

Posted by TennisChica 03/03/2008 at 11:14 PM

awe Beth! nice words. you're a nice mom!

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 11:14 PM

Sam - noted fashionista!!!!!!

I am so proud

the day glow chartreuse is bright , but ndk is right - the bumble bee thing was worse

and BTW - good to see you back here , too , ndk
guess what - I am making a brief trip to New Orleans in April
Missie wants to see LSU on a college visit - and SMU in Dallas - so we are taking a trip South for spring break
It will be so mmuch fun

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 11:16 PM

Schwab- no I didn't make it to memphis to see LD but I am glad she won-- now if she can just get to the late rounds of a Tier 1...

Posted by Sam 03/03/2008 at 11:17 PM

Beth: You taught me well. ;-)

Posted by jbradhunter 03/03/2008 at 11:17 PM

beth- so have you looked on for Designer Dresses?

Posted by beth 03/03/2008 at 11:19 PM

Tennis Chica - I am the team mom around here , I guess
but- I also know a few things about men and women and the laws of attraction

confidence works wonders

Posted by Sam 03/03/2008 at 11:21 PM

Nice racquet slam from Safin

Posted by Andrew 03/03/2008 at 11:21 PM

Hey all, likely last post from me this evening. I plan to be at IW from Sat Mar 15th to Sun Mar 23rd, with reports for the blog. I'd happily rendezvous with any Tribe attendees. Likely more to come in the next fortnight or so.

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