Monday, December 07, 2020

Weekend Tennis Diary

After much drama, the Australian Open is now slated to begin on Feb. 8 -- three weeks after its normal start time. According to multiple sources, Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley has sent an email to players, coaches and managers outlining strict conditions, including two weeks quarantine. Tiley's leaked email said authorities had agreed to special conditions for players that would allow them to prepare in Melbourne for the year's first Grand Slam. -- and prepare they are ...


Filip Krajinovic puts in the work at the Novak Tennis Center

Info HERE.

Not to be outdone, Vasek Pospisil trains hard there, too.

'New frames, who dis?'

Coach Ivan Ljubicic is confident that Roger Federer can return to the top in 2021 following a lengthy period out with injury -- aiming for Melbourne -- but the only thing Roger has promised is the return of the RF CAP!

Dominic Thiem and Jan-Lennard Struff 

Lip Service: I'm a big fan of Tommy Paul's new look

Leon Smith: They don't build British men like they used to

Serbs 'Em Right: Luka Rozajac trains Krstin Pedja and Borna Coric in Dubai

More of the sexy fitness instructor HERE.

Reilly Opelka gets lucky

After weeks in quarantine, Johnny Millman let his ass roam free

Lloyd Glasspool lost in yet another final of a Challenger doubles tournament, yet remains undefeated in the genetic lottery

Alex Rybakov and his post-Movember look

Battle of the Italian stallions

Holger Rune captures an ITF title in Turkey

Martin Nosko teletrains

Jan-Michael Gambill and his man might be the only people to get fitter in quarantine

Neal Skupski on the set of 'The Real Housewives of Leeds'?

Karen and his family near the end of quarantine

I'm buying whatever Franko Skugor is selling

And the Tennis Channel has finally been showing some great classic matches ...

On Saturday we caught the 981 U.S. Open final, which I remember watching like it was yesterday. I had ditched my afternoon classes at Rhodes Junior High to watch the semis -- Tracy Austin was finishing off Barbra Potter when I finally got home and then Martina Navratilova narrowly defeated Chris Evert in an epic three-setter -- and I was very excited that Trace was back in a major final after missing most of the year with a back injury. Revisiting the match was nearly as stressful as the first time I saw it -- I too had no recollection of Tracy's squandered match points -- but I was impressed that they were able to play as competitively as they did considering the wind that was swirling through the stadium. 

I do, however, remember all the men looking like porns stars back then! 

Arresting officer ...

And on Sunday we saw Chris complete the career Grand Slam, beating Martina in a see-saw final of the 1982 Australian Open. The year had been a strange one with Tracy again frequently injured and playing at 70% when she was able to compete. Martina won her first French Open and followed it up with another Wimbledon -- an amazingly difficult back-to-back feat -- while Chris had won the U.S. Open after Martina was knocked out by Pam Shriver in the quarterfinals. (Martina blamed it on a cat; others blamed it on her head, which was still a work in progress.) We were tickled to see the two legends palling around after the match -- Chris was drinking a Tab! -- and it got me thinking this must have been the moment Nancy Lieberman (Martina's trainer and lover) finally convinced her that she needed to hate Chris to dominate her. Note: Martina beat Chris the next 13 times they played, and 25 of the next 32, ending their rivalry 43-37 edge.

Nancy and Martina in 2016

1 comment:

David Hobson said...

Martina did have toxoplasmosis- confirmed by medical reports...the press latched onto the part where she may have picked it up from a cat (other possible place and more likely as Martina herself said- was from a rare hamburger- she stopped eating meat after this). Her energy was zapped- she was fine for about an hour, then she'd crash- and hour was all she needed against most players back then, so it didn't hurt too much. It lingered the the end of the year.