Friday, June 27, 2008

Wimbledon 2008

Today’s highlights, upsets and ramblings

Once again I am the kiss of death for whomever I pick to win the Ladies title and Mary Margaret is The Tennis Genius!

The #1 ranked player in the world Ana Ivanovic of Serbia lost in straight sets to Jie Zheng of China, 6-1 6-4. Zheng is ranked 133rd in the world for crying out loud.
The hotness factor for the ladies draw is dropping dramatically day by day. At this rate we are going to end up with a Rosanne Barr vs. Rosie O’Donnell type final.

Serena Williams beat former winner Amelie Mauresmo of France (sorry Catherine) in straight sets 7-6, 6-1

Now I don’t know who to pick in the ladies draw. I could go with Mary Margret who thinks that Venus Williams might be a good choice. But she reminds me to much of the Predator movies to pick her – yes I’m that shallow people.
There is always Serena Williams but which Serena is here. The one focused on winning or the one distracted by outside interests (not that that is always a bad thing).

I could go with Jankovic but since I just got burned by picking another pretty Serbian – I’ll pass.

So I’m not going to pick…so there.

On the gentlemen’s side the hotness factor seems to be just fine…but what do I know about that.

Roger Federer won easily in straight sets over Marc Gicquel of France (sorry again Catherine) 6-3, 6-3, 6-1

The Aussie and former champ, Lleyton Hewitt, also won in straight sets over Simone Bolelli of Italy, 6-1, 6-3, 7-6. Which sets up a nice match against Federer

The Tennis Genius’ crush, Marat Safin defeated Andreas Seppi. Mary Margaret's ledgend grows


Mary Margaret said...

Rob, it would be very creepy indeed if I had a "crush" on Marat, considering that I'm old enough to his mother!! Still, I think the good Lord did a really fine job of putting that one together.

Seriously, I am thrilled that he won again. At 28 years old, you never know how long or how well you can play. It's been a long road back to this level for him and I hope he keeps it up. I would love to see him beat Fed again (although that is a serious long shot--I'm not sure he'll get by Wawrinka.)

On the ladies' side, it starting to look like we could have another all Williams final. Not what I would like to see, but a distinct possibility. Personally, I'd like to see Safina go deep in the draw. She's worked really hard and made the final in Paris, but I haven't seen her play on grass. (Besides, I feel a little sorry for her that her brother is better looking than she is--just seems wrong, somehow. LOL)

Off to watch the Safin match now.

Rob said...

Besides, I feel a little sorry for her that her brother is better looking than she is--just seems wrong, somehow.

My sister has the same problem - LOL

mary margaret said...

Very funny, Rob. If your sister wants to beat you to a bloody pulp, I'll hold her coat.

Now that I've actually watched the match I shall give you my Tennis Genius (TG) critique. Safin's backhand is absolutely deadly. It is a stroke to strike fear into anyone who has to face it. (How does he hit that jumpy backhand anyhow? Upper body strength, sure, but, angle and pace?? That is really why he beat Fed at AO 05. That, and his truly nasty second serve.) The forehand -- not so good. Toothpaste spray at times; other times, devastating. Those of us who know tennis call it INCONSISTENT!! Pretty good volley, and moving better than I have seen in the last 3 years.

Seppi played the match very cleverly--going to Marat's forehand as much as possible. Seppi's groundstrokes are really things of beauty. I think he lost due to lack of experience in big matches on big occasions(also lack of a big serve--particularly his weak second serve). He really should have called for the referee--those last 2 or 3 games were played in really poor light. I guarantee you that Safin would have raised a row if HE would have been down a break. In poor light, the advantage is definitely to the server. (I still think Seppi would have lost, regardless.)

Anyone who loves tennis should watch that third set again (and again). Great tennis--probably the best seen so far at this year's Wimbledon.

Last thought. Safin has impeccable manners on court. Yeah, he may throw the occasional racquet, and yell at himself, but he doesn't celebrate his opponent's mistakes, or even his own winners in an excessive manner. I wish that more tennis players would observe that sort of court etiquette. Even Federer, who generally is well-mannered is at fault. Djoker, Nadal, the Williams sisters, Sharapova, Ivanovic, and pretty much all the top players these days could take a lesson from Marat on this. (And no, unlike Connors and Agassi, he didn't learn this as he got older. Check out the 2000 US Open. There is a reason that he is one of the best-liked players in the locker room.) BTW, I must also compliment Seppi on his court manners. It was a pleasure to watch two gentlemen play their hearts out.

OK, now that I've filled your comment box, I shall finally hit the hay, as we say here in KS. I don't think Safin will win this tournament, but it would be a great thing for tennis if he did. He just brings a different aspect to the game. (See, I don't just like him 'cause he's hot; I really love tennis. His inconsistency makes him fun/painful to watch. I will really miss him when he's gone.)

Catherine said...

Amélie Who? : )
Marc Who? I'm sorry, I even didn't know him! Really, I answered around me, they don't know him except Olivier who is certainly the only one to have heard of him.
If Mauresmo had won this match we would have had a chance that public TV has bought rights of broadcast!