Saturday, January 24, 2009

Random Aussie Ramblings, Vol IV: Reason No. 172 that Rafa should NOT be a wrestler

How about Richard Gasquet losing a heartbreaker in five sets to Fernando Gonzalez? Pretty nice match for week one of a Slam. But did anyone notice that Chilean fans appeared to have started a fire in the stands at the end of the match? They apparently set off flares. Seriously. I know I said tennis could use some more active fans, but I wasn't talking about setting the joint on fire.
Despite the loss, Gasquet really showed something aside quite different from the shaky mentality he had last season at Davis Cup. He had a match point in the third set, lost it, and then played a hell of a fifth set before he simply blinked. Here's hoping he doesn't lose massive amounts of confidence from this. Gonzo just beat him, and he fought well. Besides, if you're Gasquet, your consolation is that you know you left Gonzo with very little in the reserves for ... wait for it ... Rafa Nadal.
One of the horrid commentators on the Tennis Channel made an, um, interesting observation against Nadal while he was dismantling Tommy Haas (who really deserved, with his game, to be No. 1 in the world at some point in his career): "Y'know, Nadal should have been a wrestler. You just sense that he's grappling with you the whole time." Nadal does draw every ounce of energy from his opponents, but no, he should not be a wrestler. Why?
1. Nadal with cauliflower ear is not a Nadal I would like to watch.
2. No time to pick out wedgies as a wrestler. Clearly.
3. Onesies.
4. Nadal is actually beating the crap out of people. Triple H is faking it. Seriously. (And what are the triple h's? If one of them is Harold, ...)
Regardless. Nadal made 8 unforced errors for the entire match. Are you kidding me? The big four (and there are four now) are playing like demons, and they're on a collision course. Whew.
On the women's side, I just watched Marion Bartoli beat Jelena Jankovic in straight sets. Bartoli played great, no question, but if you're Jankovic and watching the tape later, you'd have to ask yourself why you didn't make Bartoli run up and back with crosscourt angles. It was a clear weakness that begged to be exposed. Basically, the top draw is now led by Dinara Safina, which means that anyone can come through. I'm officially intrigued by the women's draw now. There. I said it.


R.C. French said...

Hunter Hearst Helmsley! :D

Jodi said...

Rafa should definitely not be a wrestler - quite simply because if he can play a tennis match making 53 winners and 8 unforced errors, I think he might have found his calling.

I'm officially intrigued by the women's side as well. There are only two players left ever to have won a Slam, being Sveta and Serena, and I'm not liking the look of either one of them right now (though you never know what Serena might pull out.) I think we might get a total random here... like Cibulkova or Azarenka. Though I confess that I want Safina to come through and get it!

Naf said...

Helmsley is almost as bad as Harold, Rowan! :)
Jodi, I would love to see Safina do this. Did you see her battle back against Cornet? If Safina won, it would be the best thing for women's tennis right now.

Jodi said...

I want whomever wins the Safina/Dokic match to win the tournament. I have to cheer for my countrywoman - though it kills me cheering against Dinara. It's Roger/Marat all over again!

Naf said...

Word, Jodi. If Dokic could win this, it'd be an incredible story. What's next? Alexandra Stevenson winning the French?