Well, Roger Federer did what his fans thought was best and kicked Tony Roche to the curb. Some say Roche told Roger to suck it. Others say Roger should finish his house cleaning and get rid of his long time girlfriend. Yeah. Mirka has everything to do with how Roger is performing on court these days. It’s her job to make sure his shots are having the right effect. It’s her job to make sure opponents have a reason to fear him. I guess what they want is for some bimbette to be in the stands staring blankly at the court wondering what is going on instead of someone who was with Roger before he was Roger, who Roger appears to be loyal to and trusts. Sometimes I think the collective age of people posting on fansites is thirteen.
John Newcombe has come out with a rousing defense of Lleyton Hewitt. In an interview published by The Age and available on their website Newcombe makes the following points:
¦ Hewitt sees his relationship with the media as a war.
¦ His break-up with Kim Clijsters and subsequent marriage to Bec Cartwright meant he lost focus on his tennis.
¦ Hewitt still could win any of the grand slam events except the French Open.
If you’re a die-hard Lleyton fan read the entire article. If you’re not here’s the gist of it:
He’s only 26 and when he looks at the field, he says, 'OK, the two at the top (Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal) ... I've got a lot of problems with the No. 1. Fair enough. But I've got a good chance against Nadal on all the surfaces except clay. Everyone else, well, I know I can beat them.'
What is he, 7-1 over Andy Roddick? He genuinely knows he can beat everyone else when he’s at his best. I think he’s keen like he was three years ago.
Moving on, Andy Roddick played a fabulous match against Gaston Gaudio in Rome. Gaudio, who has been threatening to throw in the towel played well but Andy played better. He was sliding, constructing points, showing patience and generally acting as if he does know a thing or two about clay. For that match there was no sign of injury. Unfortunately in his next match Andy was shown the door. I can get on my soapbox about the American male tennis stars dissing clay and how bad it looks around the world but I’ve done that already. Andy showed he can play on clay. Skip the pseudo green crap next year Andy and commit to Monte-Carlo and Rome.
Rumor is James Blake has a new love interest and that is the reason his tennis is suffering. Funny Newcombe goes on and on about how Lleyton’s break up with Kim and subsequent marriage affected his tennis. Is this the new black? You fashionistas out there know what I mean.
Speaking of personal woes, Richard Gasquet has had to endure rumors about him and an older, married man. Gasquet has denied the talk rather vehemently. Is there a trophy wife waiting in the wings?
Paradorn Scrichaphan is marrying a former Miss Universe who hails from the Ukraine.
Roger is scheduled to play doubles at Hamburg. Federer/Wawrinka vs Blake/Fish is listed as a match on the ATP site
Kim Clijsters finally said “no mas” and retired to plan for her July wedding. At least now other women have a chance at a decent seeding and possibly a quarter or semifinal berth in a major tournament. I was never a big fan of Kim but I think she has her place among the “names” of the WTA. She is throwing a party for her fans.
Maria Sharapova is out of Roland Garros with her shoulder woes. She may accept a wildcare into Strasbourg or Istanbul if the shoulder is better. Funny how since Maria has been sidelined with injury the WTA draws have been pretty well done and fair from where I sit. I’ve had to put that particular soapbox away for now.
Justine Henin has been wiping up the courts with her opponents this clay court season. Could someone in Jelena Jankovic’s inner circle tell her rest is not that kind of four letter word? There are athletes who need to play to stay in top form but even they’ve been known to take a week off from time to time.
Is Pete Sampras angling for a grass-court exhibition against Rafa? A recent thread on Men's Tennis Forums seems to be calling Rafa out. Sampras is set to play two exhibitions with Roger in Asia after the the Masters Cup in November.
It seems John McEnroe is among those encouraging Sampras to play Wimbledon by the way.
Gael Monfils has hired Roddick's former coach, Tarik Benhabiles. Third coach for Monfils this year. In other coaching news, will Mats Wilander (we're being sarcastic) become Fed's Uncle Toni? How about Darren Cahill or Roger Rasheed (we're being serious)? Will Fed pay any attention to any of them? Will hitting with a 16-year-old junior improve Roger's game? Will Hewitt hook up with Tony Roche?
Film at eleven.
This has been quite a busy last few days. This post was a wrap until I read that Mariano Puerta is about to return to competition. I've been touting Guillermo Canas return and how the righting of the apparent wrong done to him will play out. I don't see Puerta's return in quite the same light. Until his suspension, Canas had a clean record. The suspension of Puerta was his second. As a woman, I'm sorry, I don't believe his story about taking his wife's medicine. I never did and nothing has changed.
Still, my opinion is worth nothing and obviously the powers that be felt his story was credible.
And that's the way it is.