Oooooooooookay...... Tuesday report!
Got there a little after 11. Roddick was leaving, I'd be shocked if he had been practicing at 10am, but he was wearing tennis clothes so anything's possible. The one and only Davide Sanguinetti was practicing! Spadea and Grosjean were both warming up for their matches on the stadium, along with Isner. Kind of odd to see Grosjean and Spadea warming up right next to each other. Kind of highlights how tennis is such a strange sport where it's one person against one person yet they still have to see each other so often and stuff. Vinnay's outfit will speak for itself. I was a bit surprised how early Isner was warming up for his match (like 6 hours early?) - most guys seem to warm up about 2 hours before.
Settled in at noon under the shady corner of the stadium for Odesnik/Reynolds, figured it'd be a cracker. And it was. Odesnik came out on FIRE, he was completely controlling play in the first 4 games - Reynolds was scrambling on almost every point to stay in them and somehow broke through and got the break. I have no idea how and these guys behind me were dumbfounded as well. I left late in the first set, but I'm not at all surprised Odesnik came back to win. It was great to see him playing pretty close to the baseline and controlling play. Nice all-court game from both really.
I saw Stoppini was killing Kunitsyn.... no idea why, but I heard later that Kunitsyn was really stiff and didn't warm up before his match, maybe he just woke up in a bad mood or something.
Delic and Dusan Vemic were warming up together. They seemed friendly. Around the same time, Del Potro was hitting with Gicquel.
Watched some of Warburg/Vemic. OK. Vemic is nuts
I've never seen anyone scream at himself, throw his racquet, and in general just abuse himself more than this guy. I peeked in during various times and he was always abusing himself some way or another. Anyway, Warburg was the more consistent and certainly the calmer player, and he served for the match in the 2nd and pretty much choked. Vemic won the TB and went on to win. Will be a tough loss for Warburg I think.
I bounced back and forth between that match and Moya and Lopez practicing. The only amusing thing here is that I think Moya and Lopez - who were practicing at the busiest part of the day of course - tried to take a different door out of the fenced practice court - i think they thought if they sneaked out next to the transportation desk that they could avoid the fans? Not sure why they thought that would work, and lo and behold, it didn't
But they did sign, so I'm not sure why they bothered. That also means they got into the car without showering. Yum. Oh. Moya really needs a haircut. The Spadea look on him is unbecoming. REALLY unbecoming.
Also noticed that Moya was doing a pretty full-on practice session the day of a match, many hours before his match. Interesting to see how different players prepare differently and whatnot. Then Safin came out to warm up a couple hours before his match and generally seemed in a good mood.
Went in to the grandstand to watch the start of the Delic/Sela match. The highlight of the day was surely Sela's superJew fan group. 8 (American) teenage boys had the letters of his name (d u d i s e l a) on their chests, complete with Israeli flags and they were even wearing kippot
When he entered the court they chanted "Shalom Dudi" and other random Jewishnesses - Dudi was amused and seemed rather flattered. They stayed there and cheered hard for their man the whole match
I saw bits and pieces but it was a fun match. Delic was playing solidly - consistency seems to be his problem and he seemed to be serving big and keeping the errors pretty low and coming to net when he had the opportunities. Nice match in terms of sportsmanship too, they shared a very nice handshake and tummy pat at the end.
In between watching that match I peeked in on Safin/Isner. It was basically what I expected. Marat returned well and Isner made a lot of mistakes off the ground. Highlight here is middle of the first set. Marat has just broken and Isner hits a return winners. Marat, of course, doesn't like this, so what does he do? He challenges his own serve
It was on the line so his plan failed, but he gets an A for effort and creativity.
Haas came out to warm up for his match with Falla. Falla's girlfriend was so enthralled by all of this that she sat there doing Sudoku puzzles
So, there is this strange man who was there on Sunday and who was there again today. He is middle-aged and seems to be an amateur photographer, and what he does is sit at the practice court (which happens to be right where the players all enter from their cars) and takes pictures and asks for autographs. So he gets Falla's autograph when Falla comes out to hit with Haas. He doesn't know who Falla is, so he's asking people around, who happen to be on the phone, who happened to be Noam Okun, who didn't look to pleased that this freaky middle-aged man with a bizarrely large autograph collection was interrupting his phone call to ask who that was. Anyway
I thought Tommy looked really solid and focused in his warmup, just like he looked in his practice on Sunday. Except that I can't figure out who's out there training with him. Is Dean Goldfine not his coach anymore? This guy was definitely coaching Tommy, in English (but with an accent), telling him to attack 2nd serves and stuff.
But now that Young has beaten him very easily, I'm pretty shocked considering how good Haas looked especially off the backhand. Very strange.
I watched a little doubles and then made my way out and stumbled upon Verdasco giving an autograph session. This is one top guy. He kept thanking the fans and seemed really genuine with everyone who asked for a pic and kept smiling and saying you're welcome and just in general being really nice. I know, it's a planned autograph session but they do 1-2 a day at the LA tourney and in years past I have seen other players be pretty biatchy in them. So my estimation of Verdasco just keeps growing
Also just a general statement that the LA tennis fans seem really knowledgeable. They know who most of the players are and really appreciate good shots/points and good tennis. While Moya and Lopez were practicing, so were a couple doubles players and they were doing practice points and they played this really great scrambling/volleying/etc. point and the people watching even clapped for this in practice. Also, all day long I heard parents (mostly dads) telling their kids all about tennis, the players, the rankings, even shot techniques and stuff like that. It was really nice to see
(oh, and someone told me Andy was serving in his practice yesterday. I didn't see it and didn't see him hit today so I cannot verify, but if true that's good news for us fans)
So that was long enough
will post pics when they finish uploading, probably tomorrow