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Tennis: Game of Champions (French Open starts May 26th)

FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
edited May 2008 in Debate and/or Discourse
D&D needs more tennis love. So, with the All England Lawn Tennis Championships upon us and the battles raging, what are your expectations? Who do you want to see move forward to the Finals, and who do want to get their face stomped in in straight sets against a random amateur?

Interesting News so Far:

Andy Roddick moves forward. Finally an American makes it through!

Roger Federer stomps Teimuraz Gabashvilli. Could we expect any different?

Serena Williams, Martina Hingis, and Justine Henin also advance.

FirstComradeStalin on
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Posts

  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Man how 'bout Timmy and Carlos! Wow.

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  • HazzHazz Registered User
    edited June 2007
    Epic match, but I suspect Henman's going to bottle it in the morning. At least he didn't go out with a whimper.

  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Oh shit guys, did anyone see the Henman-Moya match? Fucking 6-3, 1-6, 5-7, 6-2, 13-11.

    That was the longest fifth set I've seen in a long ass time.

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  • UnderdogUnderdog Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Finest volleyer in the game right now. Roddick needs to go take some volleying lessons from Henman.

    Moya was crazy with the serve and volley game though! Put Roger Federer to shame. SHAME.

    Awesome match though. Up and down and up and down and... short, stabby points pretty much every time around.

  • ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User
    edited June 2007
    Henman's far more exciting to watch at 32 than any other player playing at the moment. All they do is stay at the baseline and thwack it back and forth.

    pokes: 1505 8032 8399
  • UnderdogUnderdog Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Henman's far more exciting to watch at 32 than any other player playing at the moment. All they do is stay at the baseline and thwack it back and forth.

    Definitely. Some of his volleys are just... wow. The technical skill and the feel for the net game that he has is astounding. If he could have been blessed with Roddick's serve (or even just his forehand), he would have been RIDICULOUS at Wimbledon. As it stands, he was still highly successful and honestly just one rain delay + a Croatian wildcard from a date in the finals.

  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Henman's far more exciting to watch at 32 than any other player playing at the moment. All they do is stay at the baseline and thwack it back and forth.

    Not quite certain I can get behind that statement. Especially when Federer consistently produces some of the most outstanding tennis from all areas of the court I've ever seen.

    As for week 2!

    As if Federer needed any help, Haas was forced to withdraw with injury giving FedEx a day off. He's going to be fresh for his remaining matches.

    Nadal continues to impress. His tenacity is second to none. He's not entirely comfortable on grass yet, but the lack of grass court specialists in the draw allows him to out muscle players from the baseline. I actually see him getting to the finals again, given the draw. As I type, this Nadal is in a rain delayed match in the 5th set, but he is up a break. Still, all those breaks in play clearly threw off his momentum. He'll gut out the 5th set.

    Roddick is looking prime. His serve is on, which is all he needs to be competitive. However, he'll have to beat Federer who has a way of neutralizing that bomb of a serve. Has Roddick's transition game improved enough to withstand Federer returns and passing shots? It's his only chance. Standing on the baseline with Federer is not going to get him far.

    The rest of the field is hard to gauge. There's some good tennis, no doubt, but the above three men are consistently better. An off day for one of the above could see a darkhorse slip through, such as Djokovic or Gasquet.

    For the women...

    Justine Henin looks to be the strongest player in the draw. She's hungry.

    Serena Williams continues with the dramatics every chance she gets. She's such a tremendous tennis player, sometimes I just wish she could stop with the drama. But she seems to like it and has indicated in previous interviews she thrives on it.

    The other top seeds of Mauresmo, Sharapova, etc. all look fine. The real match-ups don't start until the quaters and semis, so week 2 should provide the measuring stick for the women.

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  • TheRealBadgerTheRealBadger Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Æthelred wrote: »
    As if Federer needed any help, Haas was forced to withdraw with injury giving FedEx a day off. He's going to be fresh for his remaining matches.

    I caught this headline on my way out last night. TV was on and I hear the sports guy telling me "Roger Federer advances to the final 8 at Wimbledon despite it being a rest day"

    Classic Federer

  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I'm calling the women's doubles title for Serena and Venus right now. Seriously, it's scary enough playing just one of them, but both? They'll destroy everyone in their path.

    When he dies, I hope they write "Worst Affirmative Action Hire, EVER" on his grave. His corpse should be trolled.
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  • hesthefastesthesthefastest Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Anyone else find that Federer looks exactly like Quentin Tarantino?
    Anyone?

  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    wwtMask wrote: »
    I'm calling the women's doubles title for Serena and Venus right now. Seriously, it's scary enough playing just one of them, but both? They'll destroy everyone in their path.

    Yeah, they have to be the favorites for doubles. I think they are even more impressive at doubles than singles, and that's saying a lot.

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  • No Cars GoNo Cars Go Registered User
    edited July 2007
    Hewn wrote: »
    Æthelred wrote: »
    Serena Williams continues with the dramatics every chance she gets. She's such a tremendous tennis player, sometimes I just wish she could stop with the drama. But she seems to like it and has indicated in previous interviews she thrives on it.

    I agree, it pisses me off. She had cramp, that's it, not a broken freakin' leg. Her little tantrum where she broke the racket annoyed me too, I'm certain that along with her toilet break requests (always preceeding Hantuchova's serve) were to cause her opponent more stress, and she clearly was broken mentally in the final set. So many unforced errors.

    I'm personally supporting Tipsarevic in the Men's and Ivanovic in the women's draw...she's such a sweetie! Go Serbs!

  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Anyone else find that Federer looks exactly like Quentin Tarantino?
    Anyone?

    It's that squinty face. I've noticed before.

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  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    OK, so Serena Williams is a dramatic whoremongering bitch. What the fuck was that falling down shit? She happens to get a cramp when her game is crumbling, stalls by falling to the ground until it rains, then comes back and wins after she gets rested. If it wasn't for Venus being a nice person, I would condemn that entire family to hell.

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  • mr jonesmr jones Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Theres folks here who... who like tennis? Hot.

    If any of you are Black or Hispanic, and don't live in a suburb, then I believe in prayer, and know there's hope for the human race.

  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Here's a bit of odds and ends regarding tennis and Wimbledon as a whole...

    Watching some replays of matches yesterday (rain, seriously, let them play) I was reminded how the back of the court at Wimbledon becomes worn out, while the service line remains in beautiful shape.

    Anybody else remember during the Sampras days how the service line was just as worn as the baseline from all the net activity? Those days are gone. Federer commented he would like to serve and volley more, but believes he would get beat doing so due to the court and ball speed. Is this an improvement? Some would argue so. But I'm inclined to think there are already 3 grand slam tournaments that discourage net play, so why not retain Wimbledon as the haven for something we don't get to see all year?

    Baseliners will continue to dominate Wimbledon, this much is clear. When Hewitt won, was there any doubt things had changed? Federer is looking for 5 straight and he has done so 95% from the baseline.

    This only makes me think how impressive Agassi's victory at Wimbledon was given the early 1990s grass, the wealth of big serve and volleyers, and his baseline style. Of all the retired players in the last generation, I already miss Agassi the most.

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  • No Cars GoNo Cars Go Registered User
    edited July 2007
    From watching Wimbledon on the BBC right now, the public in general in the UK is starting to turn against Williams after last night's dramatics. A few e-mails just read out have been scathing.

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I'm rooting for Michaella Krajicek for the women's single. She'll be the hope for Dutch Tennis for years to come, I fear.

    For the men, Iunno, it's all the famous names again. :?

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • visiblehowlvisiblehowl Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    It's really frustrating being an Andy Roddick fan. I love the guy, but he has a serious tendency to choke against lesser players. I'm glad he's made it this far.

    I wish I was more of a Federer fan, but I made that choice back when there was a "rivalry" between Roddick and Federer.

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  • theparttimetheparttime Registered User
    edited July 2007
    nadal is gonna kick federer's ass again. crazy, cuz federer is great, but nadal owns his ass.

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    nadal is gonna kick federer's ass again. crazy, cuz federer is great, but nadal owns his ass.
    It's on grass, not really Nadal's strong point.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • vinhjvinhj Registered User
    edited July 2007
    No Cars Go wrote: »
    Hewn wrote: »
    Serena Williams continues with the dramatics every chance she gets. She's such a tremendous tennis player, sometimes I just wish she could stop with the drama. But she seems to like it and has indicated in previous interviews she thrives on it.

    I agree, it pisses me off. She had cramp, that's it, not a broken freakin' leg. Her little tantrum where she broke the racket annoyed me too, I'm certain that along with her toilet break requests (always preceeding Hantuchova's serve) were to cause her opponent more stress, and she clearly was broken mentally in the final set. So many unforced errors.

    I'm personally supporting Tipsarevic in the Men's and Ivanovic in the women's draw...she's such a sweetie! Go Serbs!

    Isn't this par for women's tennis? Sharapova and Henin request toilet breaks all the time to stop an opponent's hot streak and Henin retired during a grand slam match against Mauresmo when she was only a couple games from losing the match because of a stomach ache.

  • areaarea Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Aldo wrote: »
    nadal is gonna kick federer's ass again. crazy, cuz federer is great, but nadal owns his ass.
    It's on grass, not really Nadal's strong point.

    Federer is making a bit of a mess of this set so far.

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  • forbis316forbis316 Registered User
    edited July 2007
    So that was pretty amazing.

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Federer won .. eventually.

    I like him better than Nadal, I believe I've had a Nadal-overdose.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • LavaKnightLavaKnight Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Forgot it was on early. Oh well, congrats Federer.

    Do any of you play tennis? I played in High School and got decently good, and still like to get in a few sets here and there every few weeks. I've had the same Yonex racquets for the longest time, too, but they were an upgrade from the oversized Wilson I started with.

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I played it every now and then, mostly with people thrice my age. I don't have the time to play competition with other young adults, I don't understand how some people can spend a whole day on and around the tennis court. Instead, I just played competition on Tuesday evening with newbies and old folks. Me and my team still came in last, I wish I had practised more.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    That was an extremely interesting two weeks of tennis. Excellent tournament, aside from all the rain delays. We've seen the rise of some young guns on both the men and womens side, but at the end of the day the old guard continues to rise above the rest.

    So that's what, 12 slams for Federer? (Edit: actually 11 now) When I saw Sampras win slam number 14, I never thought a few years later I'd be talking about some guy topping it. He could do so early as next year. And as for Nadal, he is proving to be a worthy rival to Federer on all surfaces.
    LavaKnight wrote:
    Do any of you play tennis?

    I still play, though not nearly as much as before. I started in high school, rather late for a tennis player, but ended up really getting into it. I actually spent at year studying at a university tennis management program. Eventually I decided I didn't want to be a teaching pro, but it was still a great experience and I learned a tremendous amount.

    So now I play casual sets against friends and teach youth tennis camps in the summer. I used to teach high school tennis, as well. Absolutely great sport and I'm always baffled more kids don't get into it.

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  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    As much as I dislike Nadal, he really stepped up and played great tennis, and not just the "look at how strong I am, I can make any shot from anywhere" stuff, but a lot of really deft touches on the ball. Hell, maybe it would have gone differently if he had avoided whatever happened to his knee.

    And yeah, I'm the same as the others. Played in high school pretty intensively, but college pretty much cut that off. I may try to do more this fall, though, if I can find more people to play with.

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  • MikeManMikeMan Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    What a game. Federer is a beast. It's to Nadal's credit that he took it that far on grass.

    Plus, Federer did it with Borg looking on. No pressure or anything.

    HOW DO YOU FUCK UP BAGELS. YOU BOIL THE WATER. PUT IN THE NOODLES
  • RaakamRaakam Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I strongly dislike Nadal. Just like I don't like Sharapova or Djokovic. They take *SO* long between every point, bouncing the ball 14 freaking times. It slows down the game a ton, and it's just annoying. Just play already.

    That being said, in a few years, once Federer becomes a bit slower, Nadal will start winning a lot. Federer never really had a competitor, and Nadal has come late into the picture. Gasquet may eventually challenge Nadal, but he has to be more consistent. His backhand is amazing though, so I never get tired of watching him.

    Roddick is a really good server, but he sucks at coming up to the net and shutting down angles. He doesn't have a strong enough baseline game for clay or grass, so he's forced to exhaust himself by running for dropped shots. We saw that against Gasquet in sets 4 and 5. You can't exert yourself that late into the game and expect to do well in the long run.

    I played tennis for about 6 years really seriously and was a half decent player until I blew out my shoulder. Haven't touched a racket since, as just doing a simple serve really hurts. Oh well, c'est la vie.

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  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Raakam wrote: »
    I played tennis for about 6 years really seriously and was a half decent player until I blew out my shoulder. Haven't touched a racket since, as just doing a simple serve really hurts. Oh well, c'est la vie.

    I can relate, in a way. I tore the cartilage in my wrist, and while surgery did make the pain stop, I've never been able to regain the same form on my serve. It's like I can't accelerate through the shots as quickly with that "whip" required to really get spin on the ball.

    Quite frustrating, but at least my paycheck never relied on it. C'est la vie, indeed.

    It's been sad to see injuries haunt professional players, causing them to lose that one edge that made them great. In recent memory, Patrick Rafter struggled. Tommy Haas seems to have his share of problems. And how about Gustavo (Guga!) Kuerten? He was unstoppable on clay before his hip injury, but since his movement has never been the same.

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  • setrajonassetrajonas Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I play every so often. I'm also in tennis club at college, where we just play for fun.

  • HewnHewn Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Did you guys catch the great ad Tiger Woods did for Roger Federer? I love the ending.

    Youtube link.

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  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Hewn wrote: »
    Did you guys catch the great ad Tiger Woods did for Roger Federer? I love the ending.

    Youtube link.
    Hehe, that's great.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • SeptusSeptus Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    :(

    Winners listed in the title make me sad.

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  • UnderdogUnderdog Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Raakam wrote: »
    I strongly dislike Nadal. Just like I don't like Sharapova or Djokovic. They take *SO* long between every point, bouncing the ball 14 freaking times. It slows down the game a ton, and it's just annoying. Just play already.

    That being said, in a few years, once Federer becomes a bit slower, Nadal will start winning a lot. Federer never really had a competitor, and Nadal has come late into the picture. Gasquet may eventually challenge Nadal, but he has to be more consistent. His backhand is amazing though, so I never get tired of watching him.

    Roddick is a really good server, but he sucks at coming up to the net and shutting down angles. He doesn't have a strong enough baseline game for clay or grass, so he's forced to exhaust himself by running for dropped shots. We saw that against Gasquet in sets 4 and 5. You can't exert yourself that late into the game and expect to do well in the long run.

    I played tennis for about 6 years really seriously and was a half decent player until I blew out my shoulder. Haven't touched a racket since, as just doing a simple serve really hurts. Oh well, c'est la vie.

    He wouldn't have so much trouble if his ground game (specifically his forehand) hadn't been powered down so much. In the last few years, Roddick's forehand has not appeared to have the same kind of stupid, brute power that it used to have in his younger days, before Federer became great and Roddick was winning everything in sight. His serve has gotten better with time, both in power and variety and consistency, but his forehand looks like it has regressed pretty much since Roddick started talking about coming to net more often. Has anyone else noticed this? Does anyone know why this is?

  • RaakamRaakam Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Underdog wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    I strongly dislike Nadal. Just like I don't like Sharapova or Djokovic. They take *SO* long between every point, bouncing the ball 14 freaking times. It slows down the game a ton, and it's just annoying. Just play already.

    That being said, in a few years, once Federer becomes a bit slower, Nadal will start winning a lot. Federer never really had a competitor, and Nadal has come late into the picture. Gasquet may eventually challenge Nadal, but he has to be more consistent. His backhand is amazing though, so I never get tired of watching him.

    Roddick is a really good server, but he sucks at coming up to the net and shutting down angles. He doesn't have a strong enough baseline game for clay or grass, so he's forced to exhaust himself by running for dropped shots. We saw that against Gasquet in sets 4 and 5. You can't exert yourself that late into the game and expect to do well in the long run.

    I played tennis for about 6 years really seriously and was a half decent player until I blew out my shoulder. Haven't touched a racket since, as just doing a simple serve really hurts. Oh well, c'est la vie.

    He wouldn't have so much trouble if his ground game (specifically his forehand) hadn't been powered down so much. In the last few years, Roddick's forehand has not appeared to have the same kind of stupid, brute power that it used to have in his younger days, before Federer became great and Roddick was winning everything in sight. His serve has gotten better with time, both in power and variety and consistency, but his forehand looks like it has regressed pretty much since Roddick started talking about coming to net more often. Has anyone else noticed this? Does anyone know why this is?

    Probably has something to do with Connors being his trainer for the past while. He's a big proponent of serve-> net type of play, and has been trying to teach Roddick not to back up so much. Only problem is that now his forehand and backhand are not good enough. I think he's trying to put too much top-spin on the ball to force a higher bounce to give himself time to get to the net, but it's not working and he's still not coming up to the net.

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  • UnderdogUnderdog Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Raakam wrote: »
    Underdog wrote: »
    Raakam wrote: »
    I strongly dislike Nadal. Just like I don't like Sharapova or Djokovic. They take *SO* long between every point, bouncing the ball 14 freaking times. It slows down the game a ton, and it's just annoying. Just play already.

    That being said, in a few years, once Federer becomes a bit slower, Nadal will start winning a lot. Federer never really had a competitor, and Nadal has come late into the picture. Gasquet may eventually challenge Nadal, but he has to be more consistent. His backhand is amazing though, so I never get tired of watching him.

    Roddick is a really good server, but he sucks at coming up to the net and shutting down angles. He doesn't have a strong enough baseline game for clay or grass, so he's forced to exhaust himself by running for dropped shots. We saw that against Gasquet in sets 4 and 5. You can't exert yourself that late into the game and expect to do well in the long run.

    I played tennis for about 6 years really seriously and was a half decent player until I blew out my shoulder. Haven't touched a racket since, as just doing a simple serve really hurts. Oh well, c'est la vie.

    He wouldn't have so much trouble if his ground game (specifically his forehand) hadn't been powered down so much. In the last few years, Roddick's forehand has not appeared to have the same kind of stupid, brute power that it used to have in his younger days, before Federer became great and Roddick was winning everything in sight. His serve has gotten better with time, both in power and variety and consistency, but his forehand looks like it has regressed pretty much since Roddick started talking about coming to net more often. Has anyone else noticed this? Does anyone know why this is?

    Probably has something to do with Connors being his trainer for the past while. He's a big proponent of serve-> net type of play, and has been trying to teach Roddick not to back up so much. Only problem is that now his forehand and backhand are not good enough. I think he's trying to put too much top-spin on the ball to force a higher bounce to give himself time to get to the net, but it's not working and he's still not coming up to the net.

    No, I don't believe that. While the idea that Roddick's forehand has lost some power has only occurred to me recently, evidence of this fact lies as far back as the first Wimbledon final that Roddick lost to Federer. And that was way before Connors began coaching Roddick.

    I do however see your point about the top spin. Often times his approach shots land well inside the court with a good amount of top spin and that might be the reason why his forehand (especially the one down the line in this case) would seem to be weaker. This doesn't really explain though why when Roddick hits an inside out forehand with no intention of approaching, the forehand seems so much weaker than it used to be. I remember the match at the Aussie Open against Younes El Aynaoui (21-19 in the 5th set) and that was perhaps the most memorable display of his powerful forehand. He was ripping them all match long, sometimes on consecutive shots. I haven't seen him do something like this for quite a while now.

    My brother has brought up the possibility that Roddick may be injured or that wear and tear might be the cause but I'm kinda wondering if people might have a different opinion.

  • VishNubVishNub Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I don't understand why Roddick is ranked so high. He hasn't done anything this year.

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