Monday, January 21, 2008

Heard Around Australian Open 1/21/08

by Savannah

The quarter finalists from the top half of the mens draw and the bottom half of the women's draw are set. Good luck to everyone!


Roger Federer

James Blake

Novak Djokovic

David Ferrer


Ana Ivanovic

Venus Williams

Daniela Hantuchova

Aggie Radwanska

The Great Debate
So Venus and Sania are the cause of poor Lleyton and Marcos having to play so late and by implication the reason Lleyton couldn't beat Novak and progress to the quarter finals. Really? Well if Roger Federer says it's true then it must be right? I mean in this article he manages to bring up how humble he is while at the same time saying that if he requests something the tour asks how high it needs to jump and back to the fact that the women should have capitulated and moved.

Roger Federer says a women's match should have been moved on centre court to prevent the farcical circumstances that led to the latest finish in Grand Slam history at the Australian Open.

Ramifications continued Monday over the organisers' decision to schedule a midnight start to a third round match between former finalists Lleyton Hewitt and Marcos Baghdatis that ended at 4:33am (1733 GMT) Sunday.

Hewitt won in five sets in four and three-quarter hours, giving his fourth round opponent, third seed Novak Djokovic, the benefit of an extra night's rest.

Tournament director Craig Tiley said he had consulted with Venus Williams and Sania Mirza on the possibility of moving their preceding match off centre court to allow for an earlier start to the men's match, but they refused.

The Herald Sun newspaper claimed Williams and Mirza were involved in an 25-minute "running row" with Tiley over the issue.
"I'm a pretty relaxed guy. Look, I don't ask for much in tournaments. If I ask for something they (organisers) know it's for real and they trust me, whatever," he said.

"But if they would come and tell me, 'You've got to move'. Honestly, I think the players shouldn't have too much of a say.
Hewitt's match was running so late on Saturday because Federer was unexpectedly taken to five sets in an earlier match on centre court that ran to over four hours.

Roger Explains It All

When Mary Carillo of all people manages to get hot and bothered in defending Venus and Sania for holding to the schedule you know something big is going on here. Couldn't they have asked Hewitt to start on Vodaphone? I mean since it was soooo "unexpected" that Roger was taken to five sets by Janko Tipsarevic couldn't both matches that were scheduled afterwards have been started - one on Vodaphone and the other on MCA? I'm just sayin' you know? Maybe the women remember what happened during Wimbledon 2007 (and no I'm not letting that one go folks) and how one player got not one night but five full days of "scheduling issues" rest and decided to stand up for themselves. Maybe the Slams have a history of disrespecting women players. I don't know and none of us do. The Aussie media, the same folks who perpetrated the "light in the eyes" fraud last year when Serena played Nicole, is not to be trusted to tell the truth in my very humble opinion especially when it comes to sacred cow and de facto tournament director Lleyton Hewitt. Either both matches were moved or neither one was moved. Case closed. Moving on.

In a side note mmmm8 over on TAT captioned this picture perfectly saying Tomas Berdych, who went out like the proverbial biyatch to Roger Federer in their round of sixteen match appears to be asking Roger if there is anything else he can do for him? That, Mr. Berdych, would have to be done behind closed doors thank you very much.

Melt Downs and Other Perplexing Occurrences

Maria Kirilenko played Daniela Hantuchova in what was dubbed the match of the cutey pies. Ahead and apparently cruising towards the quarter finals Ms Kirilenko took a walkabout and completely left the stadium. Back issues that appeared when her mind was on, oh I don't know, Pluto perhaps? As a Venus fan I've seen my share of these things. Venus name is on the list of quarterfinalists.
Makiri's isn't.

As for Nadia Petrova I don't know what to say. Way back when I said I saw her crashing out of the top ten. She's still in free fall. Her collapse was not totally unexpected I'm sorry to say. Nadia we're as frustrated and perplexed as you are.


Rumors are still swirling about Matchgate. Bonnie D. Ford in her ESPN blog says one involved Venus leaving the grounds if her match was moved. I think the following sums up what was really going on.

Postponing the Hewitt-Baghdatis match until Sunday could have resulted in some crowd-control issues, the last thing organizers wanted following an ugly incident early last week in which fans were pepper-sprayed. As it was, officials are lucky the crowd was so well-behaved, given all the extra hours fans had to consume alcohol.

Hewitt and Baghdatis were told at one point that the women's match would be moved, at which point they warmed up for 10 minutes to get ready to play. McKewen and tournament director Craig Tiley called the gaffe a "miscommunication." They eventually decided they would postpone the men's match to Sunday only if the women went three sets. For better or worse, it didn't turn out that way.

Hmmm. Wonder if Venus and Sania saw the boys warming up before they were "asked" and put 2+2 together resulting in their stance?

Story of the Week
The quiet story this week has been the showing by the Asian women, particularly the Chinese.
Hsieh Su-Wei, who plays double handed from both sides and Yuan Meng, who lacked the experience to make good on really giving Serena a hard time, both showed that it's not only Li Na and Peng Shuai and Yan Zi making noise on the womens tour.
Look to hear more from these ladies as we approach Beijing.

Hsieh Su-wei

Humorous Photos Oz Open Edition

David Ferrer

Maria Kirilenko

Commentary or just one too many?

I'm too sexy for my clothes...
David Nalbandian

James Blake

Rafael Nadal

Juan Carlos Ferrero

Feel free to caption...


tangerine said...

Savannah wrote: "Tomas Berdych [...] appears to be asking Roger if there is anything else he can do for him? That, Mr. Berdych, would have to be done behind closed doors thank you very much."

ROTFL! That's frickin' hilarious.

T said...

What do you think about the commentary on ESPN2 during the match between JJ and Serena?

Karen said...

Savannah, I believe that Roger was extremely diplomatic when he was asked about moving to another court. He was aware of the matters that were at hand and the press were posing their questions as if to say that see Roger Federer, world's no. 1 would have moved, who the fu*ck are you Venus/Sania why you should not move to a smaller stadium, and perhaps play to an empty crowd. I am glad that Venus/Sania stood their ground. They would never have dreamed of asking Roger to play on another court, just as how they started the men's bottom half before the top half to give him to recover from his stomach virus. He asked. They responded. That is one of the privileges of being No. 1. However, Venus is an icon in the game. She is a champion of women's rights and I believe it was not only wrong of the tournament directors to put this on her (and believe me it is about Venus) but to spread innuendo and gossip about her and to imply that as a result of her not moving Lleyton lost the match. Lleyton Hewitt is as done as the jerk chicken that I made last Sunday for dinner. Roger is world's No. 1 and I believed he responded to the questions in a very diplomatic way. He was aksed if he was in a similar position if he would have moved. He said yes. There were other provisos that he attached to his answers, regarding schedules, time constraints, etc. and I think those responses should also be taken into consideration by all and sundry.

oddman said...

That's quite the tire Daveed N is packing. Good Lord!