Monday in Madrid
So the good news is I found out how to get information on the practice schedule. A guy sitting next to me at David Ferrer’s practice handed me a print out that you can get at the information desk. The bad news is that it said that Rafa had already practiced from 10-12. Rats, I was sure he wouldn’t practice before his event for AlmaNadal. But what do I know? So I didn’t get to see Rafa at all today, but I guess a few of you did on TV.
Well, I can share about David’s practice. He was hitting with the always entertaining Alexandr Dogopolov. They were playing a practice set after the warm-up, like the players usually do. Ferru was up 4-1. He was playing pretty well and doing the fun sliding that is a hall-mark of the clay game that has been missing this week. While they were taking a rest on a change-over, Federer and Wawrinka showed up as they were scheduled for the next time slot on the court. As they went out to finish their set, Sasha joked with David, “Whoever wins the next game wins the set.” I think it was 30-30 when one of David’s slides didn’t turn out so well. He fell, twisting an ankle. He was slow to get up, covered in blue and done for the session. I hope he’s okay. He was scheduled to practice again at 5 PM, but I didn’t make it back in time to see if he did.
Here are some other things I found amusing this week:
- Mohammed Leyani pronounced Ryan Harrison’s name with a Spanish accent. He was ha-REE-son (long O).
- There is another chair ump that I don’t recognize that pronounces juego so that it sounds like “ho-ho”. He says cinco like he’s from Barcelona, but I really can’t figure out where he’s from.
- The Spaniards behind me were making fun of the way Argentine Damian Steiner says seis. He was dropping the last s.
- After Marcos Baghdatis fell in his match, he had to go change his clothes. This picture was taken after he asked the ball girl to brush him off with a towel. (Souvenir blue clay for him.)
- Ivan Navarro like showing off his thigh as much as Feli –although I like Feli’s better. I haven’t noticed Feli doing that this year. Wonder if the shorter shorts have relieved him of the need to do that. Also wonder if this is a tick Rafa might like to pick up. (Side note: this is one good outcome of inflation as it is the cost of cotton that drove the trend for shorter men’s shorts.)
- Sergiy Stakhovsky was so displeased with court 7 in his qualifying match that he took it upon himself to rake the court. The chair ump was not pleased with this action, telling him the groundskeepers know what they are doing.