And I shall have to be [there in spirit only] tomorrow, too. *Really* hope he's fit - I certainly don't want him to lose to Delbonis.
Aaaagh. You know what happened, don't you? After having completely sat out all his matches this tournament (and done great things to my blood pressure as a result) and he won them all, this lunchtime I just went on the ATP site to see what time he was likely to be playing, and found they were just about to start the first-set TB (and of course I had to watch the livescores for that, didn't I?). Feel as though I jinxed him. Shall I sit out Gstaad and see if it makes any difference?
Originally Posted by Julián Santiago
This is one of those things that annoys me (sorry, JS
, not getting at you in particular), along with people saying "Roger needs to be doing more gym work, more X, less Y ...". To what extent do we know what Roger's training/coaching regimes really are? And why they are what they are? Do we have a fly on the wall watching his every move? And who's to say that Annacone's definitely at fault? Roger's the one on court, and he either is or isn't executing the game plan they've worked on - I don't know which. But it's not good for Annacone professionally if everyone's criticising him regardless of where any fault actually lies.
Anyway, what have we really got here? As soon as we discovered he was trying out a new racket we abandoned hopes of him actually winning here, I seem to remember. Roger is testing a racket 8 sq. in. larger than his previous one, a very significant increase, and obviously it's going to take time to get used to and to be able to play all his shots reliably - assuming he actually can - *and* that can really only be done fully under match conditions (don't forget, it sounds as though he can only have been practising with the racket for a maximum of a couple of weeks, if I've understood his schedule properly).
He plays a long and demanding match late the evening before, and pretty clearly has back problems (sweater? plus my wondering about the very thick hoodie he appeared to be wearing a couple of days earlier?). He doesn't get much recovery time to deal with those, because he was probably back on court about 2 pm the next day. He appears with his back taped (not seen that before, either - is that an alternative to the undershirt, in addition to the undershirt - which he wasn't wearing, was he? - or what?) so clearly the back is still causing problems to some extent, at least. Plus I'd have been a lot more worried about Delbonis if I'd known he was a leftie, I think. It sucks that Roger loses to someone so lowly-ranked, of course (although yet again it seems that it may be someone whose ranking belies his actual abilities), but should we be *so* surprised under the circumstances? While none of them are exactly reassuring, do they actually warrant pushing the panic button?