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|Apr-23-12|| ||suenteus po 147: <Jim Bartle> That was an interesting year. Graff was shocked in the first round, and her opponent, Lori McNeil, looked as if she were the woman of destiny until she was shocked in the semi-finals by Martinez. My mother was surprised Martinez didn't win more slams after Wimbledon because she had a baseline game in keeping with the likes of Graff and other top ten women at the time. Like Sabatini and Novotna and a couple of others, however, it would just be the one grand slam. A "one-hit wonder," I believe McEnroe calls them.|
|Apr-23-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Martinez never impressed me. She had a lousy serve, almost sidearm, and nothing special that I saw beyond that.|
Sabatini, I guess, wasn't as dedicated as she should have been after the first few years, more interested in fame than accomplishment. (That's something Sharapova has avoided.) Also, she put so much effort into her shots yet somehow didn't get that much power, which looked strange. All the effort went into topspin.
Novotna was an attacking player with a lot of touch and spins but not the power needed to be a consistent winner. An excellent player, though, and great in doubles. In fact her game seemed designed to play doubles.
The most "one-hit wonders" are the French Open champions (except Stich and Ivanesevic at Wimbledon), as lots of guys won once before Nadal took over: Moya, Gaudio, Gomez, Costa, Ferrero, Kafelnikov, Muster.
There are few one-hit wonders at the hardcourt majors, the US and Australian Opens.
|Apr-23-12|| ||suenteus po 147: I wish I had a better memory of tennis from the '80s and the '90s (I was twelve years old in 1990). My mother is a diehard tennis fan, and she never missed a slam, particularly Wimbledon and the US Open. I remember watching a lot of matches and finals with her, but few of them stuck. The men's and women's final from the '89 French Open. The '99 French Open final where Hingis had two match points against Graff, then double faulted (one or both?) it away and went on to crash and burn. Not only the final but her career at that. I remember Graff winning a lot, actually. It felt very rare there was a woman's final without Graff. Naturally, my Mom favored women's tennis over men's, but that had more to do with there being less men she liked watching play. She had sometimes irrational disdain for certain players. She couldn't stand Sampras or Agassi. She definitely preferred eighties players: McEnroe, Connors, and Evert. I recall seeing some of McEnroe's on-court tantrums, but now I'm not sure if they were live or archival footage. I got back into tennis when a friend here in Atlanta found out I was a fan and asked me what I thought of the Federer dynasty and this new guy, Nadal, and his chances. I didn't know what he was talking about, so I started watching again.|
|Apr-23-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Graf took over women's tennis absolutely in 1988 and held it through 1990, when Seles came up and starting winning everything except Wimbledon. Then Seles was stabbed and Graf dominated for another four or five years until beginning to fade.|
That French final with Hingis was really strange. Hingis thought Graf was no match for her (at that stage of her career) and couldn't believe she could lose. When it got tight Graf came through and Hingis didn't, highlighted by Hingis making a scandal about one particular call and walking over to Graf's side to argue, which you're not supposed to do.
Then after she lost she at first refuse to come out for the award ceremony, until her mother convinced her she absolutely had to.
|Apr-23-12|| ||suenteus po 147: <Jim Bartle> The thing I remember most about that final is that Steffi was the coolest customer you ever saw. Hingis was shrieking and being borderline abusive at missed shots and "bad" calls. But the more Hingis flailed, it seemed the more Zen Steffi became. Apparently (I don't remember this part), there was a lot of abuse from the crowd towards Hingis during the final because she had beat Mauresmo in the third round and then insulted her afterward. Hingis was never big about winning gracefully. Or losing gracefully either.|
|Apr-23-12|| ||chancho: You guys are talking about the 1999 French Open final.|
Yeah, Hingis really acted like a spoiled brat after losing to Graf.
|Apr-23-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Again, Hingis seemed to think that French final was a formality. If the fans were against her (which I don't remember, until she went over to Steffi's side to look for a mark) because of Mauresma, it would have been because Hingis had beaten the unknown Mauresma in the Australian final, and had made maybe some comments about Mauresma being gay or looking like a man.|
You have to remember that when Mauresma appeared out of nowhere, her physique was just shocking, she was so big and strong. Plus defiantly gay.
Graf of course had been through it all a million times and just let it all slide, and took advantage of Hingis' collapse.
Hingis' worst loss, really, was to Iva Majoli in the 1997 final, which kept her from winning the Grand Slam. Majoli was a good teenage player, but then was never heard from much again.
|Apr-25-12|| ||shivasuri4: Nadal coasts into the third round of the Barcelona Open, beating Guillermo Garcia Lopez 1 and 2. That's his 30th consecutive win here, and he has a 31-1 overall record at the event.|
|Apr-27-12|| ||shivasuri4: It is quite remarkable that the big-serving Raonic beat Murray in the quarters of the Barcelona Open, a clay-court event. That's his first win against a top 4 opponent.|
Nadal faces Tipsarevic in the quarters, Ferrer meets Feliciano Lopez. That's a pair of battles between two sets of feisty players.
|Apr-27-12|| ||suenteus po 147: <shivasuri4> Raonic has had good results on clay before, they've just been inconsistent. Not sure what his type of play is (other than a big serve) because I've never seen any of his matches at grand slams.|
Nadal swept Tipsarevic aside easily, but Ferrer/Lopez was a three set slugfest. Young kid Nishikori will have his chance against Verdasco next.
|Apr-27-12|| ||shivasuri4: <suenteus po 147>, a little surprising, isn't it? Big servers usually don't do all that well on clay. He had decent results on clay last year, with 2 third rounds( one in a Masters) and a semifinal before losing in the first round of the French Open.|
Ferrer now faces Raonic. A tight one to call, as far as I can say, though Ferrer beat him last year and is expected to win again.
|Apr-28-12|| ||shivasuri4: http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Te...|
One on Raonic. Nothing technical though.
|Apr-29-12|| ||shivasuri4: Nadal beat Ferrer to take the title. Defends yet another set of points!|
Gilles Simon won the 250 event in Romania.
|Apr-29-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Somehow it seems there's an established order among the Spanish men. No matter how well anybody plays on a given day, it's Nadal, Ferrer, Verdasco and Lopez /Almagro no matter what. Lopez had four match points against Ferrer this week, but couldn't win. From what I read (and the close score) Ferrer played as well as Nadal today, but again, Nadal one, as if it were protocol.|
Press reports say Nadal-Ferrer was a great match. Wish I'd seen it.
|May-03-12|| ||shivasuri4: The 34-year-old Haas still possesses some great firepower! He beat Tsonga 6-1, 6-4 to reach the quarters of the BMW Open in Munich.|
|May-03-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Haas has still got to be in the top five among men who hit a one-handed backhand.|
|May-08-12|| ||shivasuri4: Nadal versus Davydenko set up for the second round of the Mutua Madrid Open. Surprisingly, Nadal still has a losing record of 4-6 (including a hard-court quarters where Nadal retired after losing the first set), though he has a winning 3-0 on clay.|
Nalbandian-Raonic is an interesting first round clash!
|May-08-12|| ||shivasuri4: http://www.atpchampionstour.com/new...
Bring Moya back to the main tour!
|May-10-12|| ||shivasuri4: Verdasco beats Nadal for the first time ever! Federer took 3 sets in his first clay court match of the season to beat Raonic. Tsonga was beaten by Dolgopolov. What a crazy round!|
|May-10-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Verdasco should have channeled Vitas Gerulaitis and said,"NOBODY beats Fernando Verdasco 14 times in a row!"|
Really good match. Verdasco came out strong and concentrated and looked like he was going to win easily. Really focused. But Nadal picked up the pace and won a tough second set. In the third it looked like Verdasco was panicking and was just hitting the ball hard without thinking. Then somehow he got it back and came back from 2-5 down (two breaks) to win.
Both players had trouble with their footing. I don't see why the blue color would make it different from the red clay.
Serena vs. Sharapova tomorrow for the first time in a while.
|May-11-12|| ||shivasuri4: Beating Nadal certainly took a lot out of Verdasco, who has been whipped 1 and 2 by Berdych in the quarters. The latter goes on to meet del Potro, who is unbeaten on clay this year (10-0 so far). The other semi might feature the delicious Djokovic- Federer clash. In the quarters, Djokovic meets countryman Tipsarevic (in progress now) and Federer plays Ferrer (12-0 record).|
|May-11-12|| ||Jim Bartle: With reason Verdasco seems to have treated the Nadal match as a final, and he should be thrilled to have finally beaten him. But he had nothing today. |
Del Potro beat Dolgopolov pretty routinely, but Dolgopolov looks like a real good player, extremely tough. Just needs to get more consistent.
And Serena crushed Sharapov 6-1 6-3. She's scary when she's playing well. I would have liked to see her play the Steffi Graf of 1990 or so.
|May-11-12|| ||shivasuri4: <Jim Bartle>, did you see the Djokovic match? Yet another upset by Tipsarevic! Federer would be quite happy now. If he lifts the title this week, he will replace Nadal as the world no. 2.|
|May-11-12|| ||Jim Bartle: Had the Djokovic match on but was only half-watching. Tipsarevic is tough and plays a similar style, but I expected Djokovic to turn it around in time. He didn't, and he's out. He didn't appear heartbroken by his defeat.|
I don't see a Federer win over Ferrer as anywhere close to a sure thing, but if he does win he should win the tournament. Who would he play in the semis?
|May-12-12|| ||shivasuri4: Federer plays Tipsarevic in the second semis. He should win easily.|
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