Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Sunday in the seaside town of Eastbourne left us with one of the best series of coaching timeouts. In what was Dasha Kasatkina's first grass court match ever against 2014 Wimbledon Junior Champion Jelena Ostepenko. After a break laden first set won by Kasatkina to say that Ostepenko was not pleased with this outcome or her surroundings would be putting it lightly.

Ostepenko then won the second set after disagreeing with many line calls on the hawkeye-less Court 1.
She was also unimpressed by Dasha's spin laden game.  

For Kasatkina a very well fought match for her first competitive experience on the surface. Her coach put it well when he said the most important thing is intensity. This was a great set of pointers of how you must play on grass.

Overall it was a very entertain match by all involved. Looking foward to these two playing each other in the future. As well as how Kasatkina's develops her game for grass in the future.

In her second round match today Ostepenko lost in straight sets to Cibulkova but not without more fan fair.

Hope you ended up enjoying your stay in Eastbourne Jelena.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Fed Cup

Fed Cup was this weekend and provided a worthy kick off to a big year of national team based tennis with the Olympics this summer.
  • Sveta played and lost a four hour match in Moscow. Sharapova was nominated for doubles purely to insure Olympic qualification (or to pacify Tarpishev). The Dutch showed up. For all the talk of Young Russian Lady Watch the first week in Australia. This was a baffling performance by Russian veterans.  
  • Germany/Switzerland could have very well been the final. Two stacked teams where every player with a singles ranking is inside the top 40. Then you had two doubles specialist in the top 30. So Germany with TEN players in the top 100 are into the World Group Playoffs.
  • Garbine showed up as a real Fed Cup number 1 routinely winning both her matches. She and Carla can make it to the World Group with the supporting players they have they could be favorites for the title. 
  • The Great Britain team just cannot get a grasp of that Zone group play off. Here is hoping they they get lucky with it next year. This group of ladies could really draw a home crowd if they get the chance to. 
  • The new Adidas national color kits are really good. 

  • The German version of the kit was by far the best. I mean the under arm detail makes the kit. 

  • Amelie's shorts. 

  • This sums up Russia's weekend nicely. 

  • Why does it feel like the she won the Australian Open a month ago. Longest Fed Cup week ever. 

  • The Czech played and away tie and Petra was bad. Good think Karolina was there to save the day winning all three of her rubbers. 
  • If the Czech are to win the Cup this year it will be entirely on the road. Considering it feels like they have played home ties every round for the past three years it is about time. 
  • Sam Stosur wore a headband and it was awesome. She also won three rubbers to send Australia to the World Group playoff. The headband needs to stay. 
  • Matches of the Weekend-
    • Kerber/Bencic
    • Hongenkamp/Kuznetsova - for all the wrong reasons
    • Beck/Bacsinszky 
  • Semi Finals 
    • France vs Netherlands - Dear FFT: Can this please be at Roland Garros. Thank You
    • Switzerland vs Czech Republic 
    • Final: France vs Switzerland 
  • World Group Playoffs
    • Romania
    • Germany
    • Italy
    • Russia
    • Australia
    • USA
    • Spain
    • Belarus 
    • Teams through to World Group: Germany, Spain, USA, Australia 

Friday, October 23, 2015

Where the Road Stops.

Singapore Theme song

  • Maria Sharapova and Petra Kvitova are the only former singles champions.
  • Flavia won the doubles with Dulko in 2010. 
  • Garbine and Lucie are in both singles and doubles the last person to win both was Hingis in 2000.
  • Garbine has been placed with all three lefties that are at the Championships. 

Muguruza vs Kerber. 

The tiebreaker to decide of the match they played at Wimbledon is one of the best sets of tennis played this entire season. 

Garbine has won three of their four meetings this year. 

Halep vs Sharapova

They have not met this year and both have had injury layoffs late this season. Maria has won all five of the previous meetings but has not played a completed match since the Wimbledon Semifinals. Could the Romania vs Russia show down that we are denied with in Glasgow deliver in Singapore? 

Kivtova vs Muguruza 


Safarova vs Muguruza 

They had a first meeting in the Roland Garros Quarters.  An indoor court could suit this match up nicely. 

Semi Finalists
Pannetta, Kerber, Muguruza, Halep 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Blades of Whoa

Rafael Nadal lost in the early rounds of Wimbledon again. How did I try to make sense of this I went digging for some reasoning in numbers of Rafa's performances at the Championships since he won the title in 2010.

Average Ranking of opponents. 66 (90,69,92,21,9,4,2,80,100,135,51,52,63,144,41,102) *rankings via tennis abstract

Highest ranked win on grass was Gael Monfils at 16 in Stuttgart since he beat number 4 Andy Murray in 2011 Wimbledon Semi Finals.

He has played 10 matches on Centre Court with a 6-4 record and 3-1 on No.1 Court

He lost his first ever Grand Slam first round match at the 2013 Championships.

Between 2012-2015 he played 9 matches at the AELTC. From 2006-2011 excluding not playing in 2009 he participated in 35 matches.

Matches played at Wimbledon listed in order from 2003-2015 3,2,7,7,7,0,7,7,2,1,4,2.

Results at other Slams since winning Wimbledon in 2010.
Australian Open - 11QF, 12F, 13DNP, 14F, 15QF
Roland Garros - 11-14 W, 15QF
US Open - 10W, 11F, 12DNP, 13W, 14DNP

The next question is will we see him on court before Montreal starts on Aug. 10th. He could play Bastad/Umag or Hamburg. Could we possible see him come to the States early to play in Washington D.C?  I don't think this is that much of a set back per say more of a road bump. As hopeful as you could have been given his form on the surface the past few years it was not realistic to see Wimbledon be the slump buster or lucky break that Rafa needs. He has lost at least 5 matches that he most defiantly should have won if we were in a different time. This is the current reality that we have to accept for the moment. Would I be shocked if Rafa won the US Open, no I would not be. But I feel that the most likely course of the second half of the season will just be to stay healthy. To win matches he should be winning and maybe a few that he shouldn't to be ready and healthy to start next year on the right way. Another out come that would not be surprising if he picked the events correctly would be a late season surge similar to the one Murray had in Asia and Europe last fall just grind it out till it works.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Happy Olympic Day!!!

June 23rd is Olympic Day which is the anniversary of the revival of the Olympic Games that happened on this day in 1894 with the first Modern Olympics staged two years later. When I think of the Olympics what I remember most are those moments that you will never forget. But first a video from the Atlanta Olympics Opening Ceremony.

Bob Costas puts why the emotions of the Olympics are so heighten.


It's not the triumph but the struggle.

Alex Morgan has done it.

One of the most memorable things from Sydney. Eric Moussambani

Friday, April 17, 2015

Thought Dump 4/17 : Monte Carlo, Fed Cup

  • When Rafa failed to serve out the match in the second set the Tennis Channel commentators seemed to fall back on the "here we go again he is lacking confidence". It could totally be seen as that since he had a point to go up 4-love earlier in the set. Then Rafa started the game to stay in the set with a double fault before saving a set point he ended up losing the set he once lead by a double break. It would have been great for the match to have been shorter and such. How Rafa started the third set with a break and then digging out of several 0-30 service game deficits and saving a break point. Which do you think would build confidence better closing a match out simply or falling behind and then coming back to close it out how you intended to in the first place. 
  • The past two matches seem like Rafa is channeling his inner Claypova with the epic struggles.
  • Narrative would say that who ever wins tomorrows Rafa/Novak match would be the "early favorite" for Roland Garros but it won't. 
  • Rafa is still building up his confidence. Novak seems unstoppable. This makes me seem like Rafa has "less" to lose than Novak. 
  • Twitter is a important part of my tennis viewing experience. Yet this morning I found myself watching from Monte Carlo without also following along on twitter. Usually this happens during early clay season when there is not much to follow such as Charleston or Monte Carlo. It is refreshing to watch a match without the white noise that twitter sometimes becomes when there is only one or two matches happening at the given time. 
  • I have been looking forward to this Fed Cup weekend since the match ups have been set. 
    • Kivitova/Mladenovic has the ability to be a great match between two hard hitters. There is the question mark of if Petra will be rusty after the time she has taken off or if it will have refreshed her. Petra will also have the home Fed Cup crowd which she is known to thrive in front of and that did not phase Kiki in Italy. Hopefully this is a good kick off for Petra as she heads into her most succcesful part of the season that has just been expanded. 
  • Germany/Russia
    • Captian Rittner has thrown a curve ball by not calling on Petkovic or newly crowned Charleston champion Kerber in Sochi. Instead the match ups for the first day will be Goreges/Kuznetsova and Pavlyuchenkova Lisicki. These two matches could be glorious examples of hard hitting clay court tennis or beautiful disasters and a two rubbers to zero lead for either team would not suprise me. Most likely is a 1-1 tie going into Sunday with  all to play for. 
  • Aga vs Hingis in SINGLES. Also Bacinszky returns for her first match since losing to Serena in Indian Wells in the Poland/Switzerland World Group Playoff. 
  • Serena vs Camila Giorgi. On Clay. In Italy. 
  • Laura hitting forehands!
    A video posted by Laura Robson (@laurarobson5) on

    Thursday, January 15, 2015


    So for the Australian Open Nike decided that Rafa should live the hot pink life. The sparkly dark pink stripe on his shorts seemed all too familiar. I then realized it was very similar to the shades of pink the US Women's National Gymnastics Team during the 2009-2012 quad. Welcome to Hot Pink Nation Rafa.  

    Exhibit A
     Exhibit B 
    Exhibit C