Putting Wimbledon To Bed
One thing I've taken away is that tennis' two top players genuinely like each other. Whether you hate one or the other as a player, it's hard to argue that both are really nice guys. Both generally speak well of each other when asked. Roger occasionally has been accused of bad mouthing Rafa or his game but I think his comments are simply being misconstrued. And Rafa never says a bad word about anyone. He's such a likeable kid off the court, it's amazing the transformation that takes place when he's hitting a tennis ball. We've seen and heard small things that also lend to their friendliness: Rafa and Roger low fiving while presenting their trophies to the crowd; and Peter Bodo's story about Rafa telling Fed in the locker room how amazing he played versus Ancic. These guys may say things in the heat of battle in the future that may not be flattering, but I really believe they get along great.
Another hot topic in the past week has been Roger's burgeoning metrosexuality. I appreciate and admire Roger's sense of style and that he takes great pride in his appearance. In that I have no problem at all. However, I do agree that Roger was being a little silly constantly clinging to his custom white sport coat like Linus with his blanket. In the beginning of the tournament he had stated it would just be worn for the first match. Soon however, they were inseparable. Along with that, Roger also managed to sneak on a nice watch before the trophy ceremony Sunday. By the time he was holding the trophy he looked less like a player and more like a GQ cover model. Maybe it was a bit much.
Finally, this was the spring board that will lead to the stretch run of the grand slam season. What will we have to look forward to this summer? As stated at the beginning, some young guns like Murray, Gasquet, and Berdych may be big factors on the fast hard courts. Marcos Baghdatis has shown he lifts his game when the prizes are the greatest. He is no longer looked at as an up and comer but one who is expected to begin delivering titles. Andy Roddick seems motivated to play anything and everything this summer in order to find his game before he reaches Flushing Meadow. Andre Agassi will be making his farewell run. And how will strong hard courters like Ljubicic, Nalbandian, Hewitt, and Safin fare? But of course, it will likely be a two horse race: Federer and Nadal. Neither man will play a ton before the Open but both will come prepared. I really like Federer for the US Open this year. I believe that surface favors him almost as much as the grass does right now. Bring on the hard courts!