i love the South American spring clay court swing so I'm distressed to hear that the organizers in Buenos Aires are seriously considering changing their event from a red clay tournament to a hard court tournament. Some are speculating that this is a ploy to ensure Juan Martin del Potro will play going forward. Others speculate that the dates of the tournament will change so that it's more of a lead in to Indian Wells and Miami. The last thing we need is more hard courts tournaments.
There was a huge rumor flying around yesterday (3/2) that The Monogram was going to pull out of Indian Wells. That seems to have been dispelled by posts on his website and Facebook.
Dear Fans I am feeling really good again and I was happy to hear from my doctor today that I have the green light to start working out again so I plan to try and play in Indian Wells next week. See you all soon! Roger
Mario Ancic is playing a Futures tournament in Texas. He won his first round match.
The charm offensive of one Mr. Andrew Murray continues unabated. Melina Harris posts the following.
Following his loss (at Dubai), Murray commented nonchalantly, ‘I would like to have won, but it’s not the end of the world. If it was a grand slam or something, my tactics and game style would have been a bit different. I was trying different things, so I made more mistakes than normal, I went for a lot. I said at the start of the year, that when you’re getting ready for the big events, you need to try some things. The stuff that I was doing in the matches here are similar to what I’d be doing if I was training this week. I’d be playing practice sets and working on serve-volleying and coming forward, you know and taking more risks.’
In other words, that despite being reputed to have been paid around $250,000 to guarantee his appearance and accommodated in the seven star Burj al Arab hotel (which would cost us mere mortals an approximate £2400 per night), he had the stupidity or audacity to describe the Third tier Dubai ATP Tour 500 tournament on a par with his practice ‘knock around’ sets with Miles Maclaghan. It was claimed by The Times newspaper that a veteran sports journalist almost walked out in protest
Ms Harris goes on to report that Novak Djokovic, who was kicked to the curb by Adidas so that they could pay Mr. Murray shitloads of money said the following in response.
In response to Murray’s words, Djokovic, a Players’ representative on the ATP Council, thought Murray was wrong to use Dubai as an experiment and said diplomatically, ‘You carry certain responsibility when you are in the world’s top five. You cannot just go out there and practice. Every tournament is important. That’s the way I accepted every tournament in my professional career. There are not just a lot of expectations from ourselves and our people that are surrounding us. It’s about the tournament and people who come to watch’
Maybe the Djoker knows of what he speaks since he dropped off of a lot of people's "next big thing" list after some questionable play. Can I say I can't think of two nicer guys to be having a war of words? Can I also say that try as they might Murray will never be a warm fuzzy kind of guy. Will he suffer for this? Did Adidas nail his narrow rear to the wall for disrespecting a main tour event? Did his people? Of course we'll never know unless someone from the inner circle talks but that silk purse and sow's ear analogy comes to mind. I'm just saying.
On the WTA side Jelena Jankovic, seeded number one, lost to Anastasija Sevastova in Monterrey. Those who saw the match report that Jelena started losing it late in the first set but managed to hang on and win. She was also up in both the second and third sets and ended up losing both and the match 7-5, 4-6, 4-6.
Meanwhile in one of those exhibitions that of course mean "nothing" (cough) Venus Williams defeated Kim Clijsters 6-4, 3-6, 7-5. Of course only the third set matters (cough). Maybe the ATP can set up something akin to the BJK cup so that it's players can practice before a major. Or not.