Fernando Verdasco. will look at the tapes of his match against the young Canadian Milos Raonic and realize that he may have come into the match with certain assumptions. Fernando was the defending champion. He'd played very well throughout the tournament defeating Juan Martin del Potro in the semi finals. Raonic is just 20 and was playing his first ATP final match. While it would probably not be a cake walk it was a match against another big server and he'd already won a match against a player like that.
I'm sure Fernando and his team will study that first set tiebreaker where he was up 6-2, four set points. In what can only be described as a complete mental collapse Verdasco lost that tiebreak 8-6. I guess he and his team felt that the kid would break under the pressure and Fernando would win the next two sets easily.
Instead Verdasco found himself in another tiebreak. And again he found himself on the losing end of a 7-5 tiebreak score.
We know that Verdasco has a broken bone in his foot. Someone posted on Twitter that he had a cortisone shot after the Australian Open since he wants to avoid surgery that will keep him out for weeks. He was shaking the foot on and off during the match but he didn't ask for or receive and medical attention.
As for Raonic the kid played with no fear. How important is he to the non European tennis establishment? When Justin Gimelstob went from mispronouncing Raonic to saying the name perfectly you know something is up. But where did Raonic go for a coach? Where was he hitting with top pros? Spain. The comment tonight was that he plays a little like a Canadian and a little like a Spaniard. That was when they weren't comparing him to Pete Sampras.
The Winter/Spring hardcourt season is now officially underway. Raonic has a Wild Card into the main draw at Memphis. Who is his first opponent? The #2 seed Fernando Verdasco. Hold on kids. It's gonna be a bumpy ride.
Here are the results I omitted in the first weekend post.
Marcelo Melo and Bruno Soares won the Doubles crown in Bahia.
Rajeev Ram and Scott Lipsky won in San Jose.
Bethanie Mattek-Sands paired with Meghann Shaughnessy to win the Paris Indoors title.
The team of Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci took the doubles crown in Pattaya City, Thailand.