Re: Thread of the proud citizen of Saint-Petersburg
After writing the half of the night the previous report I woke up quite late and came to the stadium at 12.30 pm only. Firstly I noticed that there is already the second match on the central court in progress but on the first court there was still the first match I was interested in. So I went to my norwegians. I joined Norwegian coach on the tribune, asked him Bjorkman’s result and some questions about Stian’s match. By that moment Stian won the first set 7-6 and lost 1-4 in the second. The coach was in a bad mood but said me some things even in quite understanable Norwegian. And the match was very strange. Stian was nervous and angry, the only thing he could to do is to calm down and begin to play, but he couldn’t do it. And it seemd he couldn’t to play near the net at all. Ha, and after the second set Stian’s coach even stopped to write down his mistakes! But really both guys - Stian and Jiri Vanek showed not so excellent tennis. Vanek wasn’t so mad and nervous and he won.
Next match started on the same court and there was a too little pause between matches so I just had two minutes to check what happends on the second court. There were several players encluded Kiefer, Philippousis and Carlsen. I didn’t mind to talk to Kiwi again and ask him something else hard-to-answer but I had to return to the first court and watch there Jan Frode’s match against Gabashvili. I found my place and sat on. Soon the Norwegian coach also came in but he prefered to stand almost all the match near one end of the court. Jan Frode served first. Well, for me it was clear that Andersen is more experienced and more professional player but he played mostly against himself, he couldn’t concentrate on the game. During the beginning of the first set he always tried to do his two-hands forehand (athough I don’t know how to call this thing) and always did it to the net or to the out. Gabashvili was much more faster and did less mistakes. But he also wasn’t so perfect. He reminded me a little bit Richard Gasquet, but if to compare them Gabashvili is nothing. Still at least. Yes, an interesting player but he needs to get much more experience. Some games before the end of the match there were Stian and his friend who came to the tribune and sat between the coach and me but little bit higher. So the match was still very tight, Jan Frode from time to time stopped his mistakes, did everything well and shout “kom igjen!” but all the other time he was angry and not very accurate. What did these norwegians did the previous night?! So when it was 0-40 in the final set and Jan Frode did out by the first serve he just sevred his second ball to the net and finished match... Then I finally said my greetings words to Stian and saw that his friend is Nieminen! Stian asked me a stupide question about how am I and said about himself that he is not so bad. Don’t remember what I asked him then but he began to tell me some long story I didn’t understand. After all he and Jarkko went to eat.
And I went to the second court where found 4 players (mostly from doubles) were doing their training. I watched it a little and noticed that Knowle felt himself more sured than a day before. Then I turned my foots to the first court where were Youzhny and Kunitsyn. It looked like everything is ok with Misha and he had a usual training. Interesting that Igor Kunitsyn did his training with Misha’s coach too. And Igor was in a really good mood, always smiled and joked. There was his girlfriend on the court too - she just watch the training (of course if I don’t mistake and she is really his girlfriend, but at least they were everywhere together). Misha was more concentrated and serious during the training. I spent there about 20 minutes, got some pictures and though to go to the central court.
There very many people on the central court but the first one I saw was Serra. He was finishing his training with Saulnier. Some minutes late I met Florent near the court’s exit but didn’t get from him anything except “Bonsoir! Ca va bien”. Huh, but I did all my speech to him in French! Haha... Anyway Flo seemed very tired and the-rest-wanted. So I went back to the court and watch there one more training where the most active figured were Davydenko and a cute blonde guy who - how I saw late - was Robin Vik. I had a rest on the VIP tribunr and watched the training while Vik didn’t finish his one. Then I went downstairs, met Vik and got a photo of him. Little bit late I saw Knowle returning from the training and asked him to pose for a photo too. Knowle’s mate began to joke with “Cheeeeeese, smile guy!”. Anyway I got a very nice picture. But then I relized camera’s batteries died - it was when I thought to get a photo of Kunitsyn. Igor waited for a moment and then said there is not a problem, he’ll pose for me the next time.
So I thought it’s time to go home when I suddenly saw Tomas Johansson. Alive Tomas Johansson who went to the second court. Certainly I went there too and met him near the court entrace where he stood and waited while his coach and Mirnyi's coach were discussing something. I checked my camera and found it works! So I asked Tomas for a photo but in the last moment my cam died again. ToJo began his training from the football and in that moment I finally did a photo of him although a very bad photo. But I did it, hehe! I though to leave the stadium, buy new batteries for my camera somewhere outside and then return back but I realized that it wouldn't be possible. So after a football guys began to discuss where Jarkko is and if he is on stadium at all. But Nieminen came soon and some minutes late Fernando Verdasco came to this court too. So they all started their training. Jarkko and Max were on the one side of court and Tomas and Fernando were on another one. Athough Mirnyi's coach adviced them to change places and play two left-handed against two right-handed. In the pause of the training Johansson's and Mirnyi's coaches player one against another and, yeah, this game won Mirnyi's one. Max self had some problems with his fingers and twice asked his father-coach to bring him a patch. Verdasco did everything well but it looked like he still has some problems with his knee. Jarkko just played, didn't seemed so fresh after spending the whole day at the stadium but kidding with Tomas somethimes. Tomas was in the best mood, was the most talkative there, always joked, laughed. And he played especially accurate. Their training had lasted for an hour, not more.
When they were finishing their training that was Juan Monaco who came in and began his own training from the football too. So 4 previous guys left the court and Juan started to play with his two coaches. I remembered I had promised to get a photo of Monaco but with my died cam it wasn't possible. So I decided to watchhis training up to the end and at least ask his for some questions. But after about 20 minutes of the training Juan and his coaches left the 2nd court and moved to the first one (an interesting detail that he change his cap to the hair stripe before the moving). Some minutes late I did the same. I created an idea to find somebody else with a camera, earn the batteries and then get a couple photos of Monaco. I had a good luck because there were two men who came to the first court and one of them held a camera in his hands. He was kind to give me his batteries so I finally got some photos of Monaco and did my mission. But Juan's training was really different and interesting so I decided to watch it up to the end anyway. Soon Jarkko came to the entrance of our court and said: "Hey guys, there is nobody else training. Go back at home!". Late that was Max Mirnyi who came to the court and sat on a chair. And he almost didn't pay any attention on Monaco. Later Greg Rusedski also came to the first court and they with Max began to prepare them selves to the training (and Max finished his previous training just 1.5 hours ago!). Juan and his coaches moved back to the second court and Max with Greg began to play. Max noticed that this court is not so fast as the second one and Greg said this court is too slow anyway. Then Max' father came in talking to a man who were asking him hundreds of questions. They were talking about Max' junior years that he was a world's or USSR's champion during three years. Max asked his father for a patch again. And father asked the son where he is going to have tomorrow's training with Kunitsyn - on the central court or somewhere else. I left the first court and moved to the second too. Juan and his coach worked on the technical elements. Later they finished their training with the football (and had a lot of fun) and began to change their clothes right on the court. I noticed there were two other players on the first courts and seemed one of them were Pavel but I waited for Juan. One Monaco's coach went out and soon the same thing did another one. I went to the court's exit to wair there for Juan. But I realized that his second coach didn't went so far. He came back, collected the balls and gave me several of them. I didn't understand what does it mean.
- It's for me?- asked me.
- Yes, it's for you!
- Oh, gracias!
- De nada! - smiled he.
- But well, then your player must sign it.
- Ok, he'll do it. Look, he comes,- said the coach and went out.
- Hey, your coach gave me these balls, would you like to sign one? - said I to Monaco.
- Yes, of course!
- And you're Juan, right?
- Yeees, - answered he with no surence in his voice (hehe!).
- Haha, I'm genious then.
- Yeah, hehe.
- When did you come to the city, Juan?
- Oh, I did it on Friday.
- And so you had a training yesterday too?
- Yes, I do my trainings here (*so I missed him a day before*).
- And how many traings do you usually have?
- Well, usually there are two trainings.
- By the way, did you notice that the second court is not so fast like this one?
- Sorry, can you repeat?
- Well, Max Mirnyi said that this second court is faster than the first one. And how do you think?
- Oh, I don't know, not sure.
- Well... buena suerte!
- De nada, - laughed his coach who returned to us.
- And do you play tomorrow, - asked me.
Juan wasn't sure but his coach knew more.
- No, not tomorrow, - answered he.
- Aha, so on Tuesday, right? And are you going to the hotel? - and the coach began to tell me who nice city St. Petersburg is that he loves it a lot and the hotel is a really gteat too. Juan who went forward waited us and wondered what we are talking about. Selv he said he likes everything around too but he hadn't visited anything except the hotel and the stadium and not sure if he is going to because it's too cold for him outside. Then coach began to study me sevaral Spanish words, then told me something else in Spanish and realized that I didn't understand, hehe. He left us again and we began to talk about Juan's next match.
- My rival is Gabashvili.
- Yeah, do you know him? He is also Russian.
- Yes, I know but I don't very like Russian players.
- Oh, you don't like Russians?
- Yes, don't know why... And my favorites are Grosjean and Clement, - honestly answered me.
- They are good. And why do you like them? If it's because of their tennis?
- Yes! I like their game, their playing manner. Well, I like French tennis.
- Hey, let's go! - said the returned coach.
They were kidding in the doors because Juan chose the wrong closed door at first. But finally he found the right one and we left the stadium.
Another day comes.
"Those who are skilful and really the best ones don't have a bad luck [reasons of their falls are in themselves only]." - Ole Einar Bjørndalen, who is not just best of the best; he can do everything.