Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Heard Around

by Savannah

Seems like everyone has something to say lately no?
For instance Jelena Jankovic is handing Roger Federer a rather large cup of what the man pictured at the top is offering. She is quoted as saying the following by Yahoo Sports

“To be honest, I do not like to talk about players, I really prefer to focus on myself,” Jankovic told Reuters in an interview at the Paris Open.

She said she could not understand why Federer felt the need to hit out at women’s tennis while his great rival Rafa Nadal, who took over from the Swiss as world number one, was so “humble”.

“Why should he even care? I don’t like putting my nose in other’s business.

“I mean, one thing I like about Nadal is that he is such a great champion, he is so humble, always has kind words for everybody, he is a role model for everybody,” said Jankovic.

“Federer is a great champion, I don’t want to get in a fight with him but why does he care, I really don’t understand. Why does he need to do that?”

Federer also led the charge against Jankovic’s compatriot Novak Djokovic when he quit because of the heat in his Australian Open quarter-final match against Andy Roddick.

“I’m almost in favour of saying, you know what, if you’re not fit enough, just get out of here,” the Swiss said.

Jankovic said Federer should not criticise fellow players. “I don’t think it’s nice to attack other players.

“If he retired, he probably had his reasons, he knows better. You cannot attack someone when you don’t have proof, when you don’t have a piece of evidence.

“There is no reason to offend him that way.”

To my knowledge Mr. Djokovic has not spoken up in his defense.

Next up is Andy Murray who continues his criticism of the new WADA drug testing policy implemented by the ATP.

Andy Murray reiterates his complaints about the stricter whereabouts requirements of the anti-doping program. "This is the third time I've been tested over the past 16 or 17 days," he said at Rotterdam. "We have ten-and-a-half months of tennis and we're getting tested at least 25 times... I don't understand why we have to do it during tournament weeks when we're being tested anyway.

"'Why is is that only the Top 50 have to do this whereabouts thing. What about number 51?"

Murray had previously given the following details about a visit from the gestapo - uh, make that drug testers.

"I got a visit at 7 a.m one morning at my home right after I had travelled home from Australia. I woke up not really knowing where I was and suffering badly from jet lag. It seemed ridiculous to me as I’d been tested just four days earlier, straight after the match I had lost in the Australian Open.
“The official who came to my home wanted me to produce identification to prove who I was. He insisted on watching me provide a sample, literally with my trousers round my ankles, and then insisted that I wrote down my own address, even though he was at my private home at 7 a.m."

It's what our mother's always told us - one bad apple spoils the whole bunch. There has to be a happy medium, somewhere between people busting in on you at 7a and ignoring the guy shooting up in the bathroom. Just sayin'.

The French Press reported that Agnieszka Radwańska of Poland did not want to play the Paris Indoors taking place now. It's not fair to quote a loose translation but she says that she didn't want to play Paris she wanted to play Pattaya City in Thailand. The current WTA rules didn't allow her to do so because Vera Zvonareva decided to play there and she is ranked higher than Agnieszka. Tennis is an individual sport. Each player is an independent contractor. In my very humble opinion each player should be able to play wherever he or she wants. For instance there was talk about Serena Williams pulling out of Paris but it was pointed out that if she did she'd HAVE to play Stuttgart. Nonsense.

They're still yammering away about the Australian Open in the tennis press. I just wonder why everything I've read follows the following script: Roger has to do blah-blah-blah to beat Rafael Nadal.
If he had just done "x" or worked on "y" this situation wouldn't exist. Oh, and yeah, Rafa is a great player. Here are two examples.

Pete Sampras: "I've seen them play on every surface now, and I was really curious to see this hard court match.

"If I were Roger I would try to come in a little bit more, especially on my serve -- Rafa stays so far back. Just serve volley every now and again, just to put it at the back of his mind. [They] get into these rallies and as soon as Rafa hits the ball to his backhand, he's in control of the point and it's tough for Roger to keep up. And he came in and mixed it up less than what I thought he was going to try to do.

"He's close just the way he's doing it, he's a few points way from winning these matches, but I'm sure he's frustrated. He's playing fine, Rafa's just an animal. He guy can play all day, he can play at a high level for hours. To do what he did in Australia, play five hours two days before and come back and win the finals is incredible. You've got to tip your hat."

Andy Roddick (on Federer's emotional post-match reaction): "I think in sports you can certainly, you know, everyone can relate to being disappointed. I think the thing about, you know, kind of having to stay on for an awards ceremony and from what I read, I think Roger touched on it. Kind of going after a match, taking a shower, stretching, that's kind of all part of your routine to kind of cool down and to kind of almost try to grab a sense of perspective and get away from everybody watching for a second.
"When you have to go straight into the awards ceremony, you know, it's not easy especially after losing a Grand Slam final. I've been on the other end of that with Roger a couple of times. So I don't think it's surprising or out of the ordinary."

Martina HIngis acutally tried to do what Andy is suggesting here a few years back. Earned her the undying love of the French fans.

Kind of old news but Dinara Safina is setting up a training facility in the Croatian town of Varazdin starting in March, reports Sportske Novosti. Safina will finance the building of tennis courts that the town will also use as a training centre. This location is the hometown of Zeljko Krajan, Safina's coach.


vmw3 said...

Fed is an idiot. He comments on other players all the time. Murray's no good, Djokovic should quit, etc. He should shut up.

Us regular folk can talk about all of them. LOL

tw said...

Fed really should not be commenting about the WTA... wait, with the meltdown he had, maybe he should be playing in the WTA.

Craig Hickman said...

Andy's quote doesn't appear to have anything to do with what Federer needs to do to beat Rafa, but there are plenty of essays out there that lay it out point by point.

Craig Hickman said...

I wish Andy wouldn't be so damned understanding of Federer, though. A little anger at the man and maybe he can win a set the next time they play.

Savannah said...

True Andy's quote isn't part of the "script" but it is part of the little pity party everyone was/is having for Roger. The American players, and others, have to get it out of their heads that he is the FedGod.

Helen W said...

The latest ploy of The Worshipful is to accuse Rafa of being a doper. Their "proof"? That he protested the new drug-testing regime. Oh, and that he is well built too.

Simply disgusting.

oddman said...

Yeah, I had my own pity party here..... :D

I do think the meltdown will be mulling around in the other players' minds about now. Now that they've had some time to absorb it. It took me a while to comprehend what I was seeing.

The 2009 season has started off ver-r-r-r-ry interesting, no?

Jeffrey said...

Just a note about the new drug rules. I think that they are so important because of the nature of tennis. Tennis is a one on one sport and if one of the players is using performance enhancers then he has a huge, unfair advantage over the other player. I'm not surprised the Nadal and Serena have been complaining about it so much as they're some of those under suspicion of using it. I don't see how anyone can play at the intensity and power of Nadal, Serena and more recently Andy Roddick without using steroids. Roddick relies solely on his power and in the past wasnt able to sustain it over the course of the match but in the Wimbledon final he was serving over 130 in the 30th game of the fifth set. Thats suspicious. I hope that strict drug testing rules continue to be enforced. Just another accolade to Roger that he is able to win even against sketchy players like Roddick and Nadal.