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2019 Roland Garros...ATP 2000...Paris, France

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  • 2019 Roland Garros...ATP 2000...Paris, France

    There are some rather big things going on in Europe these days. The continent is getting rocked. They are calling it the "Trump Effect" even though most Europeans are not aware of it. You see...there are a lot of Socialists here on this continent and in my opinion it is taking the form of a not so "soft" form of Communism. Just a hunch you see. But the people seem to be in some sort of daze. Teresa May resigning. European Union elections coming this week. I was in Europe in 1989 just before the Berlin Wall came tumbling down. I was here in October. I am here again! Always on the case...Potato Face.

    But fittingly it is the French Open on the horizon. I was there a few years ago and I have to say that that the experience was dreadfully boring. Maybe Nick Kyrgios has a point somehow. I know he is troubled and the behaviour...well there is no excuse. But idiot savants are like that you know. Hard to understand. I don't condone any of it...but I am short on condemning too. But I am a man who getting to say "agree" or "disagree" is like pulling teeth. I reserve judgement. Not that don't have strong feelings about things.

    Here's the draw before I forget. Somehow there seem to be more important things going on in life now. My life. For instance I just had my second golf lesson today! I find myself on the receiving end of the student/teacher thing. Guess what...I am a great student. Mats Robertsson is the teacher and so far...super bra! (Super good in Swedish). Never too late to learn you know. Haven't played for ten years and you know I am not getting any younger. So I realised I could spend the next ten years trying to figure it out on my own or I could take a legitimate short cut and hire someone to show me the way. A stable genius to borrow President Donald Trump's modest assessment of himself. Well compared to Nancy Pelosi that is a safe evaluation. Way to go don_trump!

    https://www.atptour.com/en/scores/cu...rros/520/draws

    But yeah...there are some great matches coming up. Lots of intrigue. Nick Kyrgios elected to bail. Having the urge to vomit since his being shown the door last week for his antics. Roger Federer in the house. Best of five and a day of rest in between. What are the odds? Who cares? When Roger is in the draw the whole thing becomes...interesting. Don't you agree? What will we do without him? Take up golf?

    God Bless America and we could use an intervention here in Europe. If it isn't too much to ask for. To pray for. Take it away my friends. We are having fun here as always. It could be worse.
    Last edited by don_budge; 05-24-2019, 12:41 PM.

  • #2
    The favorites:
    Nadal even money, Novak 14/5, Thiem 17/2, Tsitsipas 22/1, Federer 33/1, Alex 40/1, Del Po 66/1, Fabio, Stan, 100/1, Schwatzman, FAA, Kei, Coric, Medvedev 150/1.

    I'm not sure who I would put money on if betting, but I do not think Nadal will win it. He just looks like an older slower version of himself to me, but it should be a great tournament. If I had to bet, I think I would go with Tsitsipas.
    Last edited by stroke; 05-25-2019, 10:24 AM.

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    • #3
      Nadal, of course. The only question is how many sets he will lose. With the draw he got, which he couldn't have hand picked any better, I would say 1 set.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by bman View Post
        Nadal, of course. The only question is how many sets he will lose. With the draw he got, which he couldn't have hand picked any better, I would say 1 set.
        Yep, and that is what will make him so difficult to beat this year. He will likely have plenty left in the tank from the semi's onwards. It looks like a dead cert from the draw he's got. But one of the reasons I watch tennis is because you never really know...look when Roger lost to Millman. Who could have predicted that!
        Stotty

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        • #5
          Yeah, but that philosophy applies only for the other 50 weeks of the year. I've learned that over the past 14 years.

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          • #6
            Take a Chance On Me...ABBA

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-crgQGdpZR0

            Originally posted by stroke View Post
            The favorites:
            Nadal even money, Novak 14/5, Thiem 17/2, Tsitsipas 22/1, Federer 33/1, Alex 40/1, Del Po 66/1, Fabio, Stan, 100/1, Schwatzman, FAA, Kei, Coric, Medvedev 150/1.

            I'm not sure who I would put money on if betting, but I do not think Nadal will win it. He just looks like an older slower version of himself to me, but it should be a great tournament. If I had to bet, I think I would go with Tsitsipas.
            Originally posted by bman View Post
            Nadal, of course. The only question is how many sets he will lose. With the draw he got, which he couldn't have hand picked any better, I would say 1 set.

            Originally posted by stotty View Post
            Yep, and that is what will make him so difficult to beat this year. He will likely have plenty left in the tank from the semi's onwards. It looks like a dead cert from the draw he's got. But one of the reasons I watch tennis is because you never really know...look when Roger lost to Millman. Who could have predicted that!
            Originally posted by bman View Post
            Yeah, but that philosophy applies only for the other 50 weeks of the year. I've learned that over the past 14 years.
            Take a chance on me. Boy...if a guy was ever going to take a chance on a girl wouldn't it be Agneta of ABBA. What a gal! Well I took a chance on a Swedish gal who was a dead ringer for Agneta in her prime. That's my wife. Last night I was at a little gathering with my Swedish family. A beautiful family. Sing a song and it would be "Take a Chance On Me". What a chance I took. To move across the ocean at the age of fifty. My dear old Dad was just a tad concerned. Well...he knew my track record. I was doing my best to convince him shortly before I departed the good ol' USA...he somewhat reluctantly said "I hope so". I looked at him and said "failure is not an option".

            So you want to take a chance...pick Stefanos Tsitsipas. He reminds me of something. He didn't like losing to Rafael at the Australian at all. He beat him the next time. He didn't like losing to him again...but he will have to get there first. A lot of work to be done. I like Roger Federer. I know he is past his prime. I know that clay might be two strikes against him. What can I say? I bet with my heart. Just as I bet on my "Agneta" some fourteen years ago. I'm no loser. You can beat me...but never defeat me. Bow your necks boys. Come on Roger. Come on Stefanos. don_budge loves you. That counts for something. In today's world.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iyIOl-s7JTU

            The winner takes it all. Isn't that ironic? A tournament filled with ups and downs. The losing finalist is barely remembered two years down the road barring some great, great performance in the finals. But this thing is going to play its self out. Sure Rafael Nadal is the bully of Roland Garros. I don't care. I wish I could go out there and kick his ass myself.

            Stefanos Tsitsipas is ranked #6 in the world now. He has eaten his way up the food chain in nothing flat. He doesn't appear to be satisfied or intimidated by his own success. He is unimpressed. Only as good as his last miracle. Roger? What a wonderful career and how he shamed us all by changing his equipment (as don_budge suggested long before he did) and rose once again as the "Once and Future King". Dominic Thiem? He too is a guy sort of cut from the same cloth. The one handed backhand cloth that is.

            So it is going to play out for two weeks now. A beautiful story. A blurb in the Bible of tennis. It will be what it will be. I feel like Solomon in saying that. Nothing new under the sun. But it amuses us. It distracts us from the big picture. Which seems to devolve into a mere virtual scope of what once was reality. We slowly descend into an abyss of virtual morality. A place where the wooden tennis racquet is replaced in plain sight of everyone and nobody says a peep. Except little old don_budge who has rumoured to be don_quixote in disguise waving his little wooden sword at the windmills of the "military industrial complex". These events are heavily guarded these days...protected against "terrorist" attacks. So the French Open will help us to manage the dysfunction of modern dystopia.

            I can't help but think of this as therapy in a way. Or a love affair with a game that has changed and outgrown me. Like some of those old girlfriends of the past. Ah...doesn't tennis metaphor life and doesn't love mean nothing in tennis. God bless this tournament and may the best man win...as long as it isn't you know who. That skunk.


            https://www.facebook.com/don.budge.3...hlsYNfNkprVMrI


            Comment


            • #7
              Roger Federer versus Anybody (Lorenzo Sonego)

              Yep...Roger Federer did indeed look great in the first round. A perfect first round fodder for him. Just limbering up. But think back just a bit to get a finger on the pulse of Roger Federer. Just back to the Italian Open when he beat Joao Sousa in the second round and then took down Borna "Born Again" Coric on the same day in the evening with a miraculous 7-6 in the third, staving off match points, win in the third round. That was enough for the wily, cagey veteran at that point. He pronounced himself ready and fit for fight. Five sets of tough clay court tennis with a miracle "Hail Mary" at the end. Come what may now. His next round is another perfect second round for him before he gets into the meat of the tourney.

              It's dangerous to project too far ahead but what the hell...we are just keyboarding it here. You know that Roger is taking it just one match at a time. But Roger also has a decent draw. I think Stefan Tsitsipas has more work to do than Federer. Roger the long shot. The dark horse. The Sleeper? The beauty of the thing here is that he gets a day off in between matches barring bad weather. He can fight this one out. There are no guarantees and there are no do-overs here. It's dog eat dog. A tough way to go.

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              • #8
                Great commentary as usual don_budge- Entertaining and insightful.
                Regards, Phil

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                • #9
                  Bit of a dull first day yesterday. Roger versus nobody, and not a lot of drama to be had anywhere. Rafa seems to have even less of a nobody in his first round match while Novak seems to have half a somebody. All I want is anybody who can give these guys a game. If not, let's fast forward to the last eight. It's getting a bit like the English premiership soccer league where all fun and drama is at the bottom of the league where teams are fighting to stay up. The top of the league is a foregone conclusion between a handful of teams.

                  Medvedev and De Minaur are two sets up against their opponents as I write. I quite like those two for different reasons. Tiafoe is a set all and 3-3...so right in the engine room. Not that I'm a Tiafoe fan.

                  I am less optimistic of Thiem's chances to win the event than others on the forum. I haven't watched him enough yet but it seems to me he just has one game in terms of hitting pace. He just hits massively all the time whether he's playing well or not. I am not sure any player can do that. Roger and Novak are always shifting up and down the gears depending on their form, tactics and their general feeling for how hard they can hit on a given day. Thiem, from the matches I have seen him play, doesn't do that. Compromise doesn't seem to be in his repertoire. It will be interesting to see how far he goes this year. Certainly, on a given day, he could beat all of them on clay.
                  Stotty

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                  • #10
                    TV coverage on ITV4 in UK is driving me nuts!!! Watching Millman vs Zverev, and every serve, they start with court level close-up but cut to full-court view just at the crucial moment of serve. No chance to see what they're doing in service action. Grumpy old man alert.

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                    • #11
                      Agree glacierguy. Moreover, I like some of the old youtube videos with Edberg vs Becker, where they position on the camera on court level. Gives you much more a feel for the spin on the ball.
                      Regards, Phil

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by gzhpcu View Post
                        Agree glacierguy. Moreover, I like some of the old youtube videos with Edberg vs Becker, where they position on the camera on court level. Gives you much more a feel for the spin on the ball.
                        Jim Courier agrees with you. He says you get a better impression of pace, net clearance and spin. You get to see the game, he says, through the eyes of the player. When he asked the network why they don't predominantly film at court level, they told him it was because the camera angle wouldn't be wide enough cover the further reaches of the court, so when the players run for wide balls, they will go off your screen. A fish-eye lens would be too distorting so they can't use that either. It's only the higher. more elevated view that will encompass the whole court for the viewer.

                        Stotty

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                        • #13
                          Alexander off to a very poor start per usual in his Grand Slam experience. Five setter against an opponent who is ranked #56 compared to his own #5. True...sometimes it doesn't always go true to form but if you look at the leading players they are taking care of business no muss, no fuss. If you waste energy unnecessarily on opponents you should be dispatching you are only setting yourself up for a struggle later in the tournament. But he is really struggling. He did win a ATP 250 last week but he really wasted a lot of energy there as well. Now he is tired. Mentally you have to wonder how much does he have in the tank?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by don_budge View Post
                            Alexander off to a very poor start per usual in his Grand Slam experience. Five setter against an opponent who is ranked #56 compared to his own #5. True...sometimes it doesn't always go true to form but if you look at the leading players they are taking care of business no muss, no fuss. If you waste energy unnecessarily on opponents you should be dispatching you are only setting yourself up for a struggle later in the tournament. But he is really struggling. He did win a ATP 250 last week but he really wasted a lot of energy there as well. Now he is tired. Mentally you have to wonder how much does he have in the tank?
                            I think we would all be shocked if Alex ended up deep in this tournament. You are right of course, him playing last week(because he went out early in the 1000's) and then a 5 setter 1st round, does not bode well for his chances here. It is going to be very interesting to see how the 3 greats do. Fed has to know this may be his last chance at the FO and he would love to take it to Novak and Nadal here. He has set the table perfectly for his best chance here. Novak has this unprecedented opportunity to hold all 4 Majors for the 2nd time and he knows it. And Nadal, he seems to feel almost insulted if he does not win on his beloved clay. Clearly, he is not satisfied with his 11 titles here. If anyone else wins this tournament, it will be great viewing to see how they do it.

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                            • #15
                              We are only watching this for Roger.
                              Nadal is 112-2 in best of 5 set matches on clay. The only man that can beat him is Djokovic. If not for Novak, Nadal will be raising his 12th Roland Garros trophy.

                              Kyle LaCroix USPTA
                              Boca Raton

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