The 2004 DC Thread is Now Retired [Archive] - Page 5 - MensTennisForums.com

The 2004 DC Thread is Now Retired

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Nishy
09-26-2004, 09:00 PM
Thanks for the pics and article, bunk.

I look forward to seeing today's match how he played. Seeing the status, he didn't have many aces. So he might use this match for backhand and volley practice? lol

superpinkone37
09-26-2004, 09:12 PM
:haha: I doubt Andy will grow a ponytail ;) I like his hair long anyways :D

lol i doubt it too. but i do like his hair long, just not too long...

Deboogle!.
09-26-2004, 09:56 PM
baseball is gonna go over :rolleyes: Hopefully they still show Andy's match, it was short enough!

*sigh* Andy and his loyalty to the fans :)

Interesting that the other day someone in the press conference asked if he had a cold and he made a crack of "no my voice is just deep" And now it says he has a cold :rolleyes:

I love that he wants into Johnny Mac's record. He's already 14-3 (the article is wrong :o) - he can do it :bounce:
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USA Look Forward to Spain
There was no fear in USA team captain Patrick McEnroe’s eyes when he looked ahead to his team’s Davis Cup by BNP Paribas final against Spain in December. The USA hasn’t won a the trophy since 1995 and is likely to be made to play on clay by a Spanish side which could include two former French Open champions in Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya.

“We’d have loved to have played at home but I really look forward to the challenge of going to Spain. When I looked ahead and saw the draw I was excited about going there for the final,” said McEnroe, whose team completed a 4-0 rout over Belarus on Sunday. “We know that they’ve got a great team, one of the best teams in the world, if not the best team, but we’re going to prepare well and give it a shot. I think it will be a tremendous challenge and a tremendous chance to do something amazing. The Bryans have won the French Open; Andy Roddick has won tournaments on clay. When we go there we know we’ve going to have to play great clay court players, but it will be indoors and I think that will help us a little bit, because you can serve pretty big indoors too.”

McEnroe has worked hard to build a strong team ethic amongst his young squad of Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and the Bryan Brothers, and even allowed the team to prepare for their semifinal against Belarus by decamping to Roddick’s lakeside home in Austin, where they mixed training with swimming, jet-skiing and relaxing together. With one eye on the future McEnroe has also mixed in even younger players including teenagers Scott Oudsema (who was ITF World Doubles Champion in juniors last year) and Scoville Jenkins.

McEnroe may be unwilling to break the bonds formed in his settled squad this year but he does have the option of bringing in other singles players who are currently knocking on the door, like Robby Ginepri and Vince Spadea, ahead of the final in Spain.

“I think Mardy took a major step here with his win over Max Mirnyi. I don’t think there is any doubt in my mind about that,” said McEnroe. “There are other guys that are close, like Robby Ginepri and Vince Spadea, who could potentially play for us. I think Mardy has the potential to be there and do it consistently for us.”

Roddick and Fish both chose to play the dead rubbers on Sunday. Roddick beat 18-year-old Belarusian No.3 Alexander Skrypko 64 62 despite suffering from the after effects of a cold. Roddick has been telling friends and team-mates that he is keen to make inroads into John McEnroe’s USA Davis Cup record. McEnroe held a 41-8 singles win-loss record for the USA, while after his win over Skrypko brings Roddick’s up to 10-3.

“There was no reason for me not to play. We’ve had such good support since we got here, today there was a packed house for what was essentially an exhibition, and I felt I owed it to the crowd,” said Roddick. “I’ve made no secret of the fact that Davis Cup has been my priority this year and I’m going to do whatever it takes to give us the best shot. I’m very excited about going to Spain. Clay is not my favourite surface but I’ve only got to play well on it for two days. It’s a big goal and to know that we’re nine sets away from doing that feels pretty good.”

Fish’s match against Andrei Karatchenia had to be abandoned with Fish leading 3-0. The downpour heralded the first squalls of Hurricane Jeanne, the remnants of which were forecast to hit South Carolina on Sunday and Monday.

“It feels right, it feels good to be in the final,” agreed McEnroe. “As I’ve said a number of times my goal was to get us in the mix every year and have a group of guys that you can count on and who are committed. I think we can say with the squad now that we can beat everybody.”

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UPDATE 1-Roddick extends U.S. domination over Belarus
Sun 26 September, 2004 21:02

(adds quotes)

By Gene Cherry

CHARLESTON, South Carolina, Sept 26 (Reuters) - U.S. world number two Andy Roddick coasted to victory over Belarus teenager Alexander Skrypko in a dead reverse singles rubber in the Davis Cup semi-finals on Sunday.

The 6-4 6-2 triumph was just a footnote for Roddick and the Americans as they had already won the tie by taking a 3-0 lead on Saturday.

The U.S. will face Spain in the final after Rafael Nadal sealed a 3-1 victory over France in Alicante.

"I felt I owed it to the fans to go out there and give it a whirl today," said Roddick, who had the option of not playing.

"Obviously it's not as intense," he said. "You're a little more relaxed ... it's essentially an exhibition."

The 18-year-old Skrypko held serve to win the opening game before Roddick surged into a 5-3 lead en route to winning the set. The big-serving American dominated the second set although neither player was in inspirational form.

U.S. Olympic silver medallist Mardy Fish had his dead rubber against 15-year-old Andrei Karatchenia cancelled after rain from Hurricane Jeanne drenched the court.

The December 3-5 final will be staged at a Spanish venue yet to be decided.

Deboogle!.
09-26-2004, 11:12 PM
oh my god this match is freaking HILARIOUS!!!!!!! Andy's just slapping at balls all over the place. He did come to net a lil more than normal so that's good :p

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Davis Cup Tennis: For U.S. and Spain, a little psychic compensation
Christopher Clarey IHT
Monday, September 27, 2004

The Davis Cup is tennis's best way of compensating, and that's no reference to prize money, which is not the reason most of the world's top men's players still look forward to this century-old team competition.

The Davis Cup has evolved into psychic compensation for tennis stars: a way of channeling frustrated personal ambition into a worthy, common goal.

There is already plenty of emotion in the Davis Cup, with the flags waving and the fans shrieking and the heightened emphasis on each and every point. But when it is all you have left to make your season special, it can acquire even more of an edge.

Andy Roddick and the Americans certainly feel that way after a year devoid of Grand Slam singles and doubles titles. So do Rafael Nadal and the Spanish after a year of injuries, illnesses and frustration.

But both groups of gifted young men are in better moods now. The United States, led by the huge-serving Roddick, swept past Belarus in its Davis Cup semifinal, building an insurmountable 3-0 lead in Charleston, South Carolina with the loss of just one set. Meanwhile, in the converted bullring in the Mediterranean coastal city of Alicante, Spain, Nadal, the swashbuckling 18-year-old, stepped into the opportunity created by teammate Carlos Moyá's nagging injuries and sub-par play and produced one of the most convincing matches of his young career to secure Spain's spot in the final with a 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 victory over Arnaud Clement of France.

That final will be played in December in Spain, probably on an indoor clay court in Madrid, and though it will be Spain's third final in five years, it will be the first for the United States since 1997 and the first for Roddick. "I mean, I'd love to have a Davis Cup final at home," the U.S. captain, Patrick McEnroe, told reporters in Charleston. "But when I saw the draw early on, and I saw what the potential was, I was excited about going to Spain for the final."

Nadal's rout of Clement, which gave Spain a 3-1 lead, was remarkably one-sided in light of the occasion and Clement's well-earned reputation for weaving sturdy webs for his Davis Cup opposition.

But after breaking Nadal's serve in the opening game and playing tactically sound tennis in the next few games, Clement soon ran out of antidotes to Nadal's baseline venom. With his positive nervous energy and intimidating forehand and foot speed, Nadal has a mentality and style that make him very difficult to slow down once he builds momentum.

Nadal already had handled a more difficult situation in this year's first round in the Czech Republic. It was Nadal's first Davis Cup appearance, and he ended up playing the decisive fifth rubber on a quick indoor carpet against the attack-minded Radek Stepanek. He won in straight sets, setting the stage for what looked likely to be a run into the top 20 this season or higher.

But Nadal would not prove as sturdy as he looks, missing most of the claycourt season and the French Open and Wimbledon with a stress fracture in his foot. But he was back on tour in July and back on the Spanish Davis Cup team, as quickly as its captains could turn in their lineup.

Nadal rewarded their faith by playing superbly in Saturday's doubles with Tommy Robredo, giving Spain a 2-1 edge heading into Sunday.

In singles, Fabrice Santoro of France pushed Juan Carlos Ferrero hard in fading light on Friday night, but he awoke on Saturday morning with a very sore wrist and was unable to push Ferrero at all when the match resumed.

Ferrero needed just 20 minutes to win the three straight games he needed to close out his 6-3, 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 victory.

There was less suspense in Charleston, where Roddick ripped through Vladimir Voltchkov in straight sets, breaking his own all-time service speed record along the way. Mardy Fish then defeated Max Mirnyi in four sets to give the United States a 2-0 edge heading into Saturday's doubles, which twins Bob and Mike Bryan won with a surprisingly straightforward 6-1, 6-3, 7-5 victory.

Playing in Spain on clay should present much more of a conundrum, but that hardly means the final - one of the more attractive matchups in recent years - won't be worth the high price of admission. Roddick has won clay-court events, and if the match ends up on indoor clay, as seems likely with Madrid eager to host the event and push its 2012 Olympic bid, the lack of wind and other weather distractions would be even better suited to his big serve and swings.

The problem is a second singles player. Fish has struggled on clay, as has Taylor Dent. It is almost enough to raise the pleasant possibility of Andre Agassi returning to the Davis Cup, but that seems unlikely considering Agassi's traditional desire to start the new season off fresh in Australia.

The reassuring news for that young team is that the Bryans have won the French Open doubles title, although nothing major this season: at least not yet. "We had a little bit of a disappointing summer," Mike Bryan told the Davis Cup website. "This kind of wipes the slate clean."

A victory in December would give the twins something to write home about.

superpinkone37
09-26-2004, 11:31 PM
yeah this match is pretty funny. i mean like that one game andy had a bunch of break point and just sprayed his returns everywhere but in the court. oh well.

Deboogle!.
09-26-2004, 11:39 PM
ummm OMG The best one of all is the first match point and he serves and the racket FLIES out of his hand!!!! LMFAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO then he tries to kick the ball back over :sobbing:


So even though Andy and Co. will most likely lose in Spain, I really like Andy's attitude. I really hope it's not lip service and he really follows through. Something scary/sad is that of the 4 players most likely to play for Spain, Andy is 12-0 against them. only one of those 12 on clay... but still... oh well :p At least if Andy really does commit to keep getting fitter like he says he wants to, it'll help him far beyond the DC final. I just want the team to put in a good showing, even if they lose 3-0 as long as they try their hardest and don't get really embarrassed :)

andyroxmysox12191
09-26-2004, 11:48 PM
they're showing andys first match here......guess i was late for the other match lol. oh well *turns The Mountain back on*
:kiss: thanks for the articles and pics deb :kiss:

superpinkone37
09-26-2004, 11:49 PM
lmao that was pretty funny :lol: :lol: :lol: again, andy is a tard :p
and that whole last game and in the interview thingy after the match andy had something on his face, kinda weird, lol.

Deboogle!.
09-26-2004, 11:50 PM
they JUST went to the first match. the end of it, since the other one was sooooo short lmfao

It was more of a joke match anyway. Andy played with the crowd at the end and he was just slapping his racket around on returns and stuff, it was funny. Definitely not quality tennis but good stuff nonetheless.

LOL Danielle I know :bigcry: I hope it wasn't snot!

superpinkone37
09-26-2004, 11:52 PM
yep. i was hoping he would have tried some new stuff, but when he did serve and volley he usually screwed it up so i guess that was okay. and the only reason he was playing was to entertain the crowd today, and he did. alot of those games he should have won too, but i guess he just wanted to give the fans some more tennis :)

superpinkone37
09-26-2004, 11:54 PM
LOL Danielle I know :bigcry: I hope it wasn't snot!

ewww it better not have been!! i dunno what it was. i recorded the match cuz my mom wanted to watch it, so maybe ill go back and see. but im was staring at the screen wondering what the hell it was, lmao. he finally wiped it off at the end of the interview, but it was kinda funny, whatever it was :lol:

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 12:00 AM
He probably could've bageled that poor kid if he had felt like, but it was good practice. I like that he DID come to net more and stuff, it's just good practice. Nice hit and giggle:lol:

LOL I loved how in the interview he was courteous enough to move the mic away from his mouth when he coughed but yet not quite enough to cover his mouth :haha:

The whole match was just weird. There were some really close calls where you just knew that Andy would've argued his head off if it had been a "real" match...yea, just funny. I don't remember the dead rubber he played against Melzer being so odd. (then again if you're Mal, you say he didn't play the dead rubber against Austria :rolleyes::o)

superpinkone37
09-27-2004, 12:07 AM
lol yeah i know, mal was giving me a headache, i was trying to tune him out ;)
and yeah, andy should have killed that guy, but instead he did volley a little bit more and he made the match entertaining. i thought that was funny too when he moved the mic, but didnt cover his mouth :lol: but at that point i was still trying to figure out what on earth was on his face, lol

Jennay
09-27-2004, 01:06 AM
Well I lost power for an hour and a half (god damned hurricanes) but managed to see the end of his dead rubber match ;)

Andy's voice sounded different to me in the interview afterwards. I thought he had just lost it a little after winning yesterday ;)

Nishy
09-27-2004, 01:55 AM
ummm OMG The best one of all is the first match point and he serves and the racket FLIES out of his hand!!!! LMFAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO then he tries to kick the ball back over :sobbing:
Andy. :haha: :haha: Lame.

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 02:01 AM
Andy was lame all 54 minutes of his match today.. but it was fun, I'm gonna keep this one just for when I want to laugh. the tennis wasn't good at all but it was still fun for some reason. Plus I really like that he serve-volleyed a lot and stuff like that :)

But that was for sure the lamest thing I've ever seen him do (and this includes all the times he's tripped over his feet LOL) I wish I could make a video so that everyone could see.... he just serves... and the serve goes in and Skrypko gets it back but the racket has just FLOWN out of Andy's hands and he just sticks out his foot at the return :lol: :bigcry:


Well at least Andy's semi-realistic!
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U.S. Are Davis Cup Final Underdogs, Says Roddick

By Gene Cherry
CHARLESTON, South Carolina (Reuters) - World number two Andy Roddick says the United States will probably be the underdogs in the Davis Cup final against hosts Spain in December.

The U.S. clinched their place in the final with a 4-0 win over Belarus here on Sunday while Spain went through for the third time in five years thanks to a 4-1 victory over France in Alicante.

The U.S. and Spain have met six times in the Davis Cup, with the Americans 4-2 up. Both Spanish wins have been at home on clay, the likely surface for the December 3-5 final.

Spain triumphed in the 2000 semis and in the third round in 1965 but also lost to the U.S. at home on clay in 1972.

"On paper, if you look at (all) clay-court results, we're probably the underdogs," Roddick told reporters after winning his two singles matches against Belarus.

"But I definitely think we can give ourselves a chance to win.

"It's definitely on my list of...big goals," the hard-serving Roddick said. "And to kind of know we're nine sets away from doing that, it feels pretty good."

Clay might not be his "most comfortable surface," Roddick said, "but I'm not going to let it psyche me out. I'm going to go over there, I'm going to give it my all."

After all, he said, it is time to erase the stigma of never having played in a Davis Cup final.

The U.S. have not been in the final since 1997, and have not won the title since 1995.

ULTIMATE GOAL

Getting to the final is another great honor for the close-knit American team, said captain Patrick McEnroe.
"It's the ultimate to go to Spain," he said. "They (Spain) have got, if not the best team, certainly one of the best in the world, particularly at home on clay."

McEnroe is likely to challenge the Spaniards with the same team that dropped only one set against Belarus, Roddick, Olympic silver medallist Mardy Fish and twins Bob and Mike Bryan in the doubles.

Roddick is the obvious choice for the top singles spot, and McEnroe appears to have found his number two in Fish, who beat Belarus number one Max Mirnyi on Friday after several pundits had questioned his selection in the team.

"I'm never going to stay locked in completely but certainly Mardy continues to come along," McEnroe said. "This was a big win for him here."

Roddick also offered Fish a vote of confidence.

"On clay, I think Mardy is probably the clear choice," Roddick said. "He has won on clay for us before, away, and he won a huge match (on Friday), so I feel like he has the experience."

There is a bit of history on the side of the U.S. The last time they won the Davis Cup it was on clay, in Moscow nine years ago.

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McEnroe contemplating a U.S. upset of mammoth proportions

BY CHARLES BRICKER

South Florida Sun-Sentinel


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - (KRT) - There isn't much for captain Patrick McEnroe to do except wait and watch as his triumphant Davis Cup squad goes back for the final month and a half of the ATP tour.

The final between the United States and Spain, probably in Madrid, Dec. 3-5, is more than two months away and, because of the ever-present threat of injury, neither team can be sure who will play in the best-of-five match windup.

McEnroe and Spain coach Jordi Arrese will make the decision in late November and, if the eight players who won their semifinals remain fit and play at a high level, there would be no expected changes.

Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish would play singles against Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero and the doubles team of Bob and Mike Bryan would face Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo.

One thing is certain: This tie will be played on clay, the surface on which Spain beat the United States 5-0 in the 2000 semifinals. It's also a surface on which Roddick and Fish have had difficulty.

Though Roddick has won five clay court tournaments, they were all on the green clay of the United States, a grittier dirt surface that produces a faster game. (what is Charlie Bricker smoking? He's wrong on both accounts)

Red clay can produce a slower game, though Moya, like Roddick, is a power tennis player. But this is the surface best known to Spanish players and least known to U.S. players.

McEnroe, however, isn't showing concern. ``It would be a tremendous challenge and a tremendous opportunity to do something amazing,'' McEnroe said, contemplating a U.S. upset of mammoth proportions.

``I think our guys will really get up for it.''

This U.S. team has won on clay, beating Slovakia 3-2 last year. But that was Dominik Hrbaty and Karol Kucera. Moya and Ferrero are top-10 players.

The United States completed the semifinal tie with Belarus on Sunday with the Americans winning 4-0. Roddick beat Alexander Skrypko 6-4, 6-2. The last match, between Fish and Andrei Karatchenia, was called off because of rain.

Earlier, Spain defeated France 4-1, needing a win by Nadal over Arnaud Clement to clinch the tie on the final day.

This marks the first time the United States has been in the final since 1997, when it was beaten 5-0 by Sweden. The last time the United States won the Cup was with Pete Sampras, Jim Courier and Todd Martin over Russia, in Moscow, in 1995.

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 03:27 AM
Brad decided to say helloooooooooooooo
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9.26.2004 -

Andy got the team off to a great start on Friday against Voltchkov. He never faced a break point, which allows him to take more risks on his return game. It was the 3rd time that he broke the serve record this year in Davis Cup. Do you think the gun is juiced? I told Junior earlier this year that he’s going to break the 160 mph mark; maybe he will do it in the Davis Cup final in December against Spain.



It’s going to be a huge task going against Spain on their turf (slow red clay) Hopefully it will be held at an indoor facility, which is never as slow as outdoors. Mac and Andre were big stars for the Davis Cup and I think that Andy would like to live up to that. He has not lost a Davis Cup match since '03 and is now 6-0 on the year improving his over all D-Cup record to 14-3 .



Big props to Serena for saving 2 match points taking out the US Open Champion Kutznetsova. She won the China Open on her 23rd B-day and it was her first title since winning in Miami last spring. It’s amazing because it seems like she’s been around forever and she’s only a year older than Andy. It’s good to see Serena winning tournaments again.



I’m off with the family to catch the battle of the Pirates. Go Raider Nation!

superpinkone37
09-27-2004, 03:31 AM
wow its been awhile since we have heard from brad :)

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 03:33 AM
lol yep... well Brad probably hasnt seen Andy since the USO... he probably saw Andy's match on TV LOL

I would imagine he will make his way to Thailand though :unsure:

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 03:38 AM
You don't wanna know....

TMC Houston :sad:

superpinkone37
09-27-2004, 03:41 AM
lol yep... well Brad probably hasnt seen Andy since the USO... he probably saw Andy's match on TV LOL

I would imagine he will make his way to Thailand though :unsure:

well yeah, and we all know brad doesnt update after a loss until the next tourney. and im sure hes going to thailand. :)

and omg im gonna go into major withdrawel without tennis on tv till november. :eek:

Golfnduck
09-27-2004, 03:42 AM
Deb, great avatar. Maybe they should stomp it down before they play on it. :bounce:

tangerine_dream
09-27-2004, 04:18 AM
I can't wait 'til December so I can bust out my clay av again. :banana:

breakdancingfish, you should've seen us last year during the three month down-time; we were going crazy from tennis/Andy-withdrawal. :lol:

superpinkone37
09-27-2004, 04:44 AM
lol, i can imagine how crazy ill be during the offseason. at least you guys will be here :)

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 05:41 AM
ahhhhhhhhh what would a day of tennis be without a fabulissimo article from dear ole Karen Crouse! :haha: and the second one from Bud is funny just for the first few lines LMFAO
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Group effort crucial for Cups
By Karen Crouse

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Monday, September 27, 2004

The players on the U.S. Davis Cup team watched incredulously as the U.S. Ryder Cup team imploded against the Europeans. It was the weekend before Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and Bob and Mike Bryan would be drafted for duty by Uncle Sam and, tellingly, they were together.

Roddick, the No. 2 player in the world (you know, same as Tiger Woods), invited his teammates to his second home in Austin, Texas, for four days before the team was due in Charleston, S.C., for its semifinal against Belarus.

The players trained in the morning, then spent the afternoons boating on Lake Austin. They cleared time to watch the telecast of the Ryder Cup matches, following the action as attentively as if they were the Dolphins' offensive line watching game film of the Bengals defeat.

It was hard for them to fathom what they were seeing. It'd be like asking the Brady Bunch to sit together and watch The Osbournes.

"I was shocked," Fish said. "I was surprised at how the captain and some of the players acted."

Of course he would be. Unlike Woods and Mickelson and Co., Roddick, Fish and the Bryan brothers are birds of a feather, not lone wolves. Contrary to what American golfers too deluded to look in the mirror are saying, the U.S. golfers didn't lose to the Europeans 18 1/2 -9 1/2 because of the way the U.S. squad was selected.

The Americans lost golf's greatest team event because they couldn't be bothered to practice every day together, to push through the wall of exhaustion for one other, to channel their competitiveness toward a common goal rather than keep it aimed at each other.

Conversely, the Americans are poised to win tennis' greatest team event for the first time in seven years because captain Patrick McEnroe has sold the idea of team unity to a group of players whose minds were open to the concept.

These guys make it a pleasure," McEnroe said Friday of being the captain, before the United States clinched its defeat of Belarus over the weekend to set up the final in Spain on Dec. 3-5.

His is a sentiment U.S. Ryder Cup captain Hal Sutton couldn't have uttered even if he had tried, through gritted teeth.

It's not by dumb luck that McEnroe assembled a group of players who genuinely enjoy hanging out together. As is the case in any successful relationship, everybody from McEnroe on down works hard at keeping the ties that bind them from becoming frayed. Witness Roddick opening his home to his teammates.

McEnroe, for his part, has facilitated the team unity by making sure he gets to know the personalities of the pool of players from which he's picking, the better to figure out how to push everybody's buttons to get them believing there's nothing cooler than being part of something bigger than themselves.

Much like his players, McEnroe felt like a gawker at an accident scene as he watched the U.S. squad crash and burn at the Ryder Cup. It made him cringe to watch. But he couldn't turn his head away.

Asked what went through his mind as the rout unfurled, McEnroe said, "Let's just say we're all happy all the guys get along and that we're into this. I'm really lucky that I've got guys that are really passionate and want to fight together."

Call it luck by design. If the U.S. golfing community was smart, the next Ryder Cup captain would be Fuzzy Zoeller (if Woods doesn't like it, oh well). Whomever is chosen would would be wise to seek out McEnroe's counsel at once.

It takes time to create chemistry. If you saw the way Roddick was cheering for Fish during Fish's singles match Friday against Max Mirnyi, you know the U.S. Davis Cup team has it.

Win or lose against Spain, the Americans will be a little sad when this run is over. That's how close they've become.

"I'm not going to stand here and criticize some of the golfers," Fish said of the U.S. Ryder Cup team. "I'm just shocked at the way they acted so happy when it was over."


==============================
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United statement made by US
By Bud Collins, Globe Correspondent | September 26, 2004

CHARLESTON, S.C. -- What has four arms, four legs, and acts like a giant octopus in the pursuit of tennis balls?

Why, it's the Brothers Bryan, who bring to mind one of those old movies in which the hero struggles desperately to free himself from the tentacles of a nasty creature of the deep.

For 92 minutes yesterday on a green rectangular griddle, the heroes of Belarus -- Max Mirnyi and Vladimir Voltchkov -- must have felt entangled, with little hope of escape from the arms and legs of the Brothers Bryan. And, no, they didn't pry themselves loose.

Countering their foes' moves everywhere, the 26-year-old twins -- Mike and lefty Bob -- squeezed the life out of the Belarussians, and their small country's gallant bid in this Davis Cup semifinal at the Family Circle Tennis Center.

Standing for the US for the fourth time -- a job for which they've salivated since they were old enough to recognize a tennis ball -- the Bryans "applied the hammer," as Bob put it. Their 6-1, 6-3, 7-5 triumph, added to Friday's singles wins of Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish over Voltchkov and Mirnyi, lifted the US to an unbeatable 3-0 lead in the best-of-five series.

The US' first appearance in the final since Pete Sampras & Co. beat Russia nine years ago in Moscow likely will take place in Spain. But the Dec. 3-5 final could take place in this country if France, trailing Spain, 2-1, can sweep today's singles at Alicante, Spain.

Considering the public's sour response to US flops in the Ryder Cup and Olympic men's basketball, could this esprit-filled gang piloted by self-effacing Patrick McEnroe be the team Americans embrace?

"If it's Spain, of course they'll be favored on their slow home clay," said McEnroe, immersed in his fourth year as captain, a success at knitting together the first genuine all-for-one US attitude in years. "But I kind of hope it will be. I look at it as a great opportunity."

"This saved our summer," said Mike Bryan. "We've had some bad losses, didn't keep our French Open title, lost in the third round of the US Open. But Davis Cup means so much to us. It's such a high."

The twins are 4-0 since making their long-sought Cup debut a year ago against Slovakia.

Having plummeted from No. 1 to No. 7, they were eager to get the Belarus task done authoritatively, to look like the best. Voltchkov and Mirnyi were in the clutches of the two-headed monster out of Camarillo, Calif., from the start. Losing the first three games, the Belarussians never got going.

"They had too many quick answers for what we presented," said Mirnyi. "They've been playing together for so long, and it shows."

At 6 feet 4 inches, the Bryans had the reach to cover all the loopholes, poaching more often than a breakfast chef, missing few returns or volleys. They faced only two break points, those in the opening game. But leadoff man Mike squirmed out of them on Voltchkov's error, Bob's swooping interception volley, a service winner, and his leaping overhead smash.

The Bryans had no serving problems after that, as Bob banged six aces and eight service winners, Mike four and five.

"That was a slow, maybe nervous start," said Mike Bryan. After that, they were all over the 6-5 Mirnyi and the stubby Voltchkov, as was the sun-drenched gathering of 9,427, which chanted "U-S-A!" often, and "Give us a break!" when the Belarussians served.

Mike showed no sign of problems with worn cartilage in both hips that had slowed him recently.

"It hurt us," he said. "But I was fine today. I've been spending three hours daily in the gym on corrective stuff."

The twins are such high-energy, chest-bumping, hand-slapping guys that McEnroe sends them back to the hotel to rest after one set of the first day's singles, so they won't sap their energy cheering. "We don't like to leave the guys," said Bob, "but it's the right thing. We get a massage, sit around drinking water, relaxing for our one big day."

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 06:22 AM
Hmmm so PMac knows about all the Andre talk
=--------------
Agassi could return for Davis Cup final
Agence France-Presse
Charleston, South Carolina, September 27

Andre Agassi hasn't played Davis Cup since 2000, but US captain Patrick McEnroe said he wouldn't rule out a return for the eight-time Grand Slam champion.
Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and Bob and Mike Bryan combined this weekend to put the United States into the Davis Cup final for the first time since 1997.

But McEnroe knows they'll face a tough challenge in Spain, who will certainly use the host's privilege of choosing the venue to stage the tie on clay.

It's a surface Agassi has proved he can succeed on - having won the French Open in 1999.

"There is a lot of options. I am never going to say never about anything. If Andre called me, I would take his call and go from there. But whether I am expecting that to happen or whether Im going to call him myself is something Ill think about.

"He is certainly capable of playing great clay court tennis," McEnroe said. "And saying that, we all know where he stood on Davis Cup in the last few years, and we have missed him."

Agassi boasts a 30-5 win-loss record in a Davis Cup career stretching back to 1988.

Long a stalwart of the US side, in recent years Agassi, now 34, has preferred to save his ageing body from the wear-and-tear of Davis Cup travel and play.

"If he is interested and available, he knows my number," McEnroe said. "And I know his number."

But McEnroe is likely to go with the team that delivered victories in the quarter-finals and semi-finals.

Against Belarus here this weekend, Roddick and Fish won both opening singles matches before the Bryan brothers clinched the tie with a doubles win.

The final score in the tie, usually the best-of-five matches, will stand at 4-0 after Fish's final singles match was scrapped because of rain ith the American leading Andrei Karatchenia 3-0.

Roddick won his meaningless reverse singles 6-4, 6-2 over Alexander Skrypko.

He had already done his real work on Friday, posting a 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 victory over Vladimir Voltchkov. Olympic silver medallist Fish beat Max Mirnyi on Friday 7-5, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3, and the Bryans closed it out with a 6-1, 6-3, 7-5 win over Mirnyi and Voltchkov.

Roddick, the world number two admits that clay isn't his preferred surface. His best performance at Roland Garros was a third-round appearance in 2001.

"Its not my most comfortable surface," Roddick said. "That's not a secret. I'm not going to sit here and pretend it is. But that being said, I [only] have to play well on clay for two days and that is what I'm going to try to do.

"I'm not going to let it psyche me out. I'm going to go over there, I'm going to give it my all. Ill be fine. Hopefully, it'll work out."

For his part, Fish was anticipating being named to the team that heads to Spain in December.

And he is hoping that the team can continue their success for one more round to bring home the 2004 Davis Cup title.

"None of us have been in the final situation before, but I've been in two pretty big Davis Cup matches in these past couple years," Fish said. "I think that helps a lot experience wise.

"We can definitely play, and I think we can beat Spain. It would take a hell of an effort, that is for sure."

heya
09-27-2004, 06:54 AM
"Its not my most comfortable surface," Roddick said. "That's not a secret. I'm not going to sit here and pretend it is. But that being said, I [only] have to play well on clay for two days and that is what I'm going to try to do.

"I'm not going to let it psyche me out. I'm going to go over there, I'm going to give it my all. Ill be fine. Hopefully, it'll work out."

awww, a little negative & bitter, aren't u, False Bravado Andy?
He gives it his all because he trained a lot on clay all year.
Gee, where is Gilbert with his "wise advice?"
The commentators sweated while they lied that the GREAT USA would
make it difficult for Spain.
Bow down in Spain when u serve 155 mph, Andy.

superpinkone37
09-27-2004, 07:41 AM
i dont think ande would call and say he wanted to play DC. but if andre got the call, he might be more likely to go. i dont think it will end up happening, but i think asking would be worth a try, wouldnt that be awesome-- andre helping out with DC right before his (probably) last year on the tour. i dunno, i think it would be cool. problem is, its very unlikely....

elusive
09-27-2004, 01:37 PM
hey all! :wavey: i don't know if anyone noticed but i havent been coming here FOR AGES. to be honest i just went through a bunch of horrid exams and they were horrid but oh well they are over and done with. and i have ANOTHER bunch of exams which basically my whole life depends on coming soon so i probably will only be popping in once in a while. [just to let you all know that i havent disappeared from the face of the earth or started hating this place or any of you. in fact, I MISSED THIS PLACE SO MUCH. im suffering from major mtf withdrawal lol]

anyway thanks deb and carole and all you dears who have been posting articles and pictures and updating me. :hug:

sure, the clay courts and spain don't look very optimistic but well we can always hope for a miracle can we. ;) well it isnt THAT impossible. anyway i really LOVE the spirit of the davis cup and i think all the unity among the us team is really great. i mean, you can really see in those pictures that they were playing for each other, and not just for some personal glory. IT'S GREAT. i'm happy :)

star
09-27-2004, 02:15 PM
Good Luck on your exams, elusive!

That's a lot of pressure for someone your age. :(

And I agree that we can keep a hopeful heart for the final. After all, no one expected France to beat Austraila on grass in Oz. ;)

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 04:03 PM
last batch of articles, I guess :)
===========
Roddick rewards Charleston fans

By PATRICK OBLEY

Staff Writer


CHARLESTON — It was all over except the shouting ... and the Belarusian kazoo playing ... and, oh yeah, those other two matches Sunday as the United States wrapped up its Davis Cup semifinal victory against Belarus.

The near-sellout crowd of 9,036 at Family Circle Tennis Center braved inclement weather and was rewarded when Andy Roddick opted to play his reverse singles match against 18-year-old Alexander Skrypko.

Roddick dispatched the freshman from Southern Methodist University, 6-4, 6-2.

The day’s second match between Mardy Fish and 15-year-old Andrei Karatchenia was canceled by rain with Fish leading 3-0 in the first set.

Roddick said any thought of skipping out on the weekend was cast aside by the overwhelming support of the Charleston tennis faithful.

“I’m going to be here anyway watching the guys, and Charleston has been great for us,” Roddick said. “I mean, they’ve come out every day. Even today was a packed house for what is essentially an exhibition.

“So, you know, I felt I owed it to the fans to go out there.”

Skrypko showed flashes of potential during numerous net approaches. He came closer to breaking Roddick’s serve than Belarusian veteran Vladimir Voltchkov.

“It was very tough. It was my biggest game, in my opinion,” Skyrpko said. “He’s a very good player, and I was very excited and a little bit nervous in some moments, but I was trying to do my best.”

Though Roddick rifled one ace past Skyrpko at 151 mph, the humid, windy conditions kept his power serve in check for most of the day.

Roddick played with the crowd during one serve by faking a start and toyed with a ball boy who was having trouble chasing down an errant plastic wrapper. Roddick rolled a pair of tennis balls to the net to give the youngster something he could more easily track down.

“Obviously, it’s not as intense,” Roddick said about playing what in Davis Cup terms is called a “dead rubber” match, where nothing is on the line. “You’re a little more relaxed. It’s essentially an exhibition.

“It’s nice because it’s still patriotic and you still hear the chants, but there’s a lot of intensity lost.”

The Americans will face Spain, which defeated France, 4-1, in the other semifinal. The Davis Cup final will take place in Spain on Dec. 3-5.

While team captain Patrick McEnroe said all week that he preferred to take on Spain in Spain because he likes challenges, Roddick scoffed.

“Well, if he said he preferred that, he’s lying to you,” Roddick said with a laugh. “But at the same time, you know, maybe his thought process is you play the hand you are dealt.

“While it would have been comfortable and nice at home, I think we’re looking forward to the challenge of it.”

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===============================Cup passion on Daniel Island
BY JAMES BECK
Of The Post and Courier Staff
Two excellent examples of tennis passion broke out loud and clear Sunday.

Believe it or not, Andy Roddick played in a meaningless rubber match. Mardy Fish tried to play, too.

More than 9,000 fans actually showed up at Family Circle Magazine Stadium for what amounted to a day of exhibitions. All of this occurred under the threat of tropical weather. Amazing.

It's this passion that makes this particular U.S. Davis Cup group so special. And ditto for Charleston tennis.

The rain that arrived just as Fish moved to a 3-0 lead in the first set against Andrei Karatchenia was the only thing that placed a damper on the first Davis Cup event for this state. The semifinal tie had been long decided by that cancellation point, of course.

Roddick's call to duty in Sunday's first match, in which he overwhelmed Alexander Skrypko, 6-4, 6-2, made the trip to Daniel Island worthwhile for the ticket holders. It was a great and historic weekend for Charleston tennis.


THE 'LOVE-HOLD'

Move over wrestling. Tennis has its own hold. It's the "Love-Hold" as demonstrated by Roddick in his victory Friday over Vladimir Voltchkov. Roddick held service five times at love that day.


FOREHANDS IN THE MIDDLE

One reason Mike and Bob Bryan dominated the middle of the court in their tie-clinching doubles victory Saturday was that they put both forehands in the middle.

With left-handed Bob playing the deuce court and right-handed Mike on the ad side, they had two forehands in the middle 75 percent of the match. And where did Voltchkov and Max Mirnyi try to go most often?

Up the middle, of course.


MACS SUPPORT THEIR OWN

All tennis parents know how difficult it is to watch a son or a daughter playing. It's much easier to play than to watch, when a parent seems to die a million deaths in a tight match.

But that didn't stop the parents of Patrick and John McEnroe from following them to all corners of the globe. They were there when Patrick played Davis Cup in India. So when they came to Charleston, Patrick must have had goose bumps when he introduced his parents to a large crowd at last Wednesday's Davis Cup party.


HEADED TO SPAIN

The word is that the U.S. team will head for Europe to practice on red clay at some point in the next couple of months in preparation for the Dec. 3-5 Davis Cup final in Spain.

The red-clay practice can't hurt, because the Spaniards have quite a crew.

The emergence of 18-year-old Rafael Nadal in the decisive match of Spain's victory over France on Sunday is cause for concern. Nadal is one of the most talented players in men's tennis. Roddick handled Nadal easily in the second round of the U.S. Open on a hard surface.

But the left-handed Nadal has a huge forehand with natural topspin that suits clay perfectly, as well as a big serve.


LINE DUTIES, ANYONE?

Why would anyone volunteer to serve as a linesperson for a men's professional tennis match, other than the obvious -- to receive free entry to the match and sit close to the action?

The speeds at which Roddick, Voltchkov, Mirnyi and Mardy Fish were hitting serves in Friday's singles were anywhere between 135 and 155 mph. When the ball is coming that fast, and the linesperson is just a few feet from the impact point, I don't think the naked eye is capable of seeing the ball well enough for the linesperson to make the correct call on any serve close to the lines.

From my vantage point just off the court level, it appeared that any serves that were close, and sometimes not so close, were allowed to be played.

This gives big servers such as Roddick and the other three singles players from Friday an obvious advantage when they are playing opponents with lesser serves.

===============================
==============================
=================================
Roddick, rain finish off Belarus
BY DAVID CARAVIELLO
Of The Post and Courier Staff
He flicked balls toward either end of the net in between points, forcing the ball crew to scramble. He drew a laugh from the crowd by faking a service toss. He tried to smash a serve so hard that his racket slipped out of his hand, and then stabbed at his opponent's return shot with a foot.

Andy Roddick was clearly enjoying himself Sunday at the Family Circle Tennis Center. With the United States' Davis Cup semifinal over Belarus clinched the day before, his mood was light and loose. The world's No. 2-ranked player toyed with both the crowd and 18-year-old Alexander Skrypko before finishing off a 6-4, 6-2 victory that gave the Americans a 4-0 lead in the event.

That wound up being the final score when rain clouds rolled over Daniel Island, washing out Mardy Fish's singles match against 15-year-old Andrei Karatchenia with the American ahead 3-0 in the first set. The rain did nothing to dampen what was a spectacular three days for the Davis Cup, which drew 9,036 for Sunday's two meaningless matches and 27,652 for the tournament.

U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe gave Roddick, now en route to an event in Thailand, the opportunity to sit out Sunday's "dead rubber" against Skrypko, a freshman at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. But Roddick felt the crowd deserved an encore appearance.

"I thought about it, but there was no reason for me not to play," said Roddick, who improved to 14-3 in Davis Cup matches, good enough for 16th all-time among Americans. "I'm going to be here anyway watching the guys, and Charleston has been great for us so far. They've come out every day. Even today, it was a packed house for what is essentially an exhibition. I felt I owed it to the fans to go out there and give it a whirl."

That decision came as no surprise to McEnroe. Roddick is passionate about Davis Cup, hosting a U.S. team camp prior to the semifinal, and willing to adjust his schedule in any way to be ready for the Americans' next step: the final Dec. 3-5 in Spain.

"He understands his position in the game, particularly in this country. We've had tremendous support here from the fans, and he feels like he owes it to them come out and play," McEnroe said.

"That's just a great sign of someone who gets the bigger picture. A lot of times you're up 3-0, and it's a little wind taken out of the sails. But he understands the bigger picture, that people bought tickets and there are almost 10,000 people here. It was still a great crowd here today. I think they get extremely excited to see Andy, and Andy is obviously happy to play for them."

Skrypko stuck close early before Roddick got serious and pulled away. Roddick won 40 of 56 service points and slammed five aces, one clocked at 151 mph late in the final set. Skrypko was a long way from SMU, where he went 21-5 last season.

"It was my biggest game, in my opinion," said Skrypko, who won a Davis Cup match against Wayne Black of Zimbabwe last year. "He's a very good player, and I was very excited. I was a little bit nervous in some moments, but I need more experience to play against players like this."

Sunday ended the surprise Davis Cup run for Belarus, a former Soviet republic that reached the World Group of the 137-nation tournament for the first time. This semifinal performance was easily the biggest tennis success in the short history of Belarus, which has just 15 indoor and 130 outdoor courts throughout the country.

"We certainly are proud of our achievement, but at the same time disappointed that we couldn't go one step further," said Max Mirnyi, the team's No. 1 player. "You've got to look at it this way: we're still a fairly young nation. We have, I believe, more room to improve, and we need to make sure that more players get involved in our team."

Meanwhile, the Americans move on to their first Davis Cup final since 1997, and have a chance to end a somewhat irritating title drought that stretches back to 1995.

"That's definitely on my short list of goals," Roddick said. "Davis Cup has always been one of them, and to kind of know we're nine sets away from doing that, it feels pretty good."

============================
==============================
==============================

Hey Bud, let's party!

Top of the 2nd


The rock 'em, sock 'em tennis was great at the U.S.-Belarus Davis Cup semifinal competition on Daniel Island, almost as much fun as guessing which colors tennis writer (and famously flashy dresser) Bud Collins would mix and match with his daily outfits.
Collins, the TV analyst and tennis author covering Davis Cup for The Boston Globe, wore pinkish pants with a long-sleeved, mostly white Hawaiian-style shirt on Friday.

Sunglasses were required to look at Collins on Saturday: Purple polo shirt with bright yellow pants dotted with orange tennis ball-sized circles.

Sunday: Long-sleeved dark pink shirt and slacks that must be seen to be believed -- a mix of khaki squares, and squares featuring a pink floral arrangement. Plus a green, yellow and pink striped belt.

Collins left town Sunday, but not before asking singles star Andy Roddick why U.S. players wore different shirts during competition instead of the same uniforms to "look like a team."

"Bud," Roddick said, "are you giving me fashion advice?"

Collins: "Trying to. Did you see the Ryder Cup? They looked like a team."

Roddick: "Yeah, but we won."


ROCKET MAN MEETS ROCKET MAN

Roddick, America's best tennis player, was too busy during the U.S.-Belarus semifinal on Daniel Island to grant one-on-one interviews. But he was more than happy to accommodate longtime tennis fan Elton John in a 2003 telephone Q-and-A the rocker/reporter did for Interview magazine.

Excerpts:

Elton: Andy?

Andy: How are you?

Elton: I'm good. I'm happy to be interviewing you. You know, I identify with tennis players because they live the kind of existence I did -- out of a suitcase, hardly ever going home. How do you deal with that?

Andy: It's OK. In the juniors it's not really like that. You're two months at home and then you go play two weeks. But (now that I'm in the pros) I'm dealing with it, I guess (laughs).

Elton: Do you like traveling?

Andy: It's not so much that I don't like traveling, it's just that I love being home. I love being able to spend time with my friends.

Elton: That's why I come home after shows, now that I'm at an age where I can afford to come home every night on a plane. But you can't do that in a tennis tournament.

Andy: No, you have to stay with the group.

Elton: So what do you like to do when you go home? Do you just go out and have a few beers?

Andy: I just, you know, do a whole bunch of nothing (laughs). I go home and hang out, watch movies.

Elton: Yeah, the greatest luxury for me is going home and watching six episodes of "Six Feet Under" on DVD. Then I'm very happy.

Andy: Exactly. Go home, check the TiVo and catch up on your TV (both laugh).


ANDY'S WATCHING YOU

Roddick seemed to enjoy his perch in a window seat at the Starbucks near the corner of King and Market. People-watching is one of his favorite roadtrip pastimes -- in Paris, New York or Charleston. The 22-year-old "World's Sexiest Athlete" (People magazine) chatted and signed autographs for fans who recognized him.

=================================
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=================================
Up next: A trip to Spain
BY DAVID CARAVIELLO
Of The Post and Courier Staff
Andy Roddick remembers nothing about the last time the United States won the Davis Cup, in 1995. At the time, he had larger concerns -- like trying to stay alive in the boys' 14s national tournament, where he lost in the early rounds.

But he'll play a vital role in the Americans' next trip to the championship. The United States' 4-0 semifinal victory over Belarus at the Family Circle Tennis Center sent it to the Davis Cup final against Spain.

The Spaniards will host the event, set for Dec. 3-5, likely either in Madrid or Seville. Regardless of the city, the Americans will play on a slow, red clay surface beneficial to the home team.

"On paper, if you look at clay-court results, we're probably the underdog," Roddick said. "But I'm definitely going to work hard and try to get in really good shape and be ready for the tie. I definitely think we can give ourselves a chance to win, and we're all looking forward to it."

Spain beat France 4-1 in the other semifinal, clinching its first trip to the championship in four years Sunday when 18-year-old injury replacement Rafael Nadal defeated Arnaud Clement.

Although the Americans would have hosted the final had France won, U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe welcomes the chance to beat Spain on its home dirt.

"I really look forward to the challenge of going to Spain, to be honest," he said. "I mean, I'd love to have a Davis Cup final at home, don't get me wrong. But to me, when I saw the draw early on and I saw what the potential was, I was excited about going to Spain for the final.

"We know that they've got a great team, and so do we. I think our guys will really get up for it. I think it (will) be a tremendous challenge and a tremendous opportunity to do something amazing."

While Spain features clay-court aces like Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero, the red stuff is a mixed bag for the Americans. There are no worries over the doubles tandem of Mike and Bob Bryan, who won the French Open on a similar surface in 2003. Roddick's clay results vary from an appearance in a Houston final to a second-round exit at Roland Garros at the hands of a Frenchman ranked No. 153 in the world.

"It's not my most comfortable surface," he said. "That's not a secret. I'm not going to sit here and pretend it is. But that being said, I have to play well on clay for two days. That's what I have to do. I'm not going to let it psych me out. I'm going to give it my all. I'll be fine. Hopefully, it will work out."

McEnroe believes there's a clear difference between Roddick having to advance through a two-week tournament on clay, and having to win just two matches in three days in the Davis Cup.

"I think the French is his biggest challenge as a Grand Slam, because over seven matches you're playing so many different types of players," he said. "But when you go there, you know you've got to play two matches, and we know they're going to play great clay-court players. But it will be indoors, so I think that will help us a little bit. And you can serve pretty big indoors, even on clay. So we'll feel pretty good about that."

That leaves a decision over a No. 2 singles player. McEnroe chose Mardy Fish for this hard-court semifinal primarily because of his strong run at the hard-court Olympic tournament. Fish did nothing on Daniel Island to hurt his case, beating Belarus No. 1 Max Mirnyi in the event's most crucial match. Fish also won a clay-court Cup match against Karol Kucera in a U.S. victory over Slovakia last year.

"I'm pretty comfortable with Mardy. I'm never going to say it's locked in completely, but certainly Mardy continues to come along. Certainly this is a big win here. I think it will help him a lot this fall," McEnroe said.

"I think he's got to work extremely hard the next couple of months. To win a match there on clay in a best-of-five is going to be physically very demanding, and a lot different than the match here. But game-wise, the game is there. It's a question of having the endurance and the belief in that."

And then there's the possibility of a wildcard like 34-year-old Andre Agassi, for whom clay is a strength. Although Agassi's 30 Davis Cup singles wins rank second among American players, he cooled on the event later in his career. Choosing Agassi over Fish would also go against McEnroe's master plan of selecting younger players for whom Davis Cup is a priority.

"If he's interested and available, he knows my number, and I know his number," McEnroe said. "I have nothing else to say other than that. I don't know if it's going to go anywhere. He's said clearly that he's not going to play. If that changes, great."

J. Corwin
09-27-2004, 06:19 PM
Andre playing DC would be awesome! :yeah: It would be great for both himself, the U.S. team, and the sport...and of course for me. ;)

Deboogle!.
09-27-2004, 08:42 PM
U.S. Looks Forward To Final Against Spain
By Richard Pagliaro
09/28/2004

Surrendering a single match in three home victories, the United States has rolled through Davis Cup competition with all the power of an 18-wheeler passing a hitchhiker on the side of Interstate-95. From a distance, Spanish captain Jordi Arrese has watched the Americans "serve like trucks", but Spain promises to set a speed trap for December's Davis Cup final: a slow red, clay court that it hopes will sidetrack the Americans.

"They all serve like trucks but we'll try to find the antidote," Arrese said after Spain scored a 4-1 victory over visiting France to advance to its third Davis Cup final in the past five years in Alicante, Spain on Sunday. "In any case it's the U.S. who should be worried about us. They've got to come here and they'd better be prepared for clay."

The 2004 Davis Cup runner-up to Australia on grass, Spain is back to make another run at the Davis Cup championship it claimed in 2000 when Juan Carlos Ferrero carried Spain to its first Cup with victories over Patrick Rafter and Lleyton Hewitt on the red clay of Barcelona.

Currently, Spain is considering Seville, Barcelona, Madrid and Valencia as potential host sites for the December 3rd-5th final. Regardless of the site, the Spanish squad of Ferrero, Carlos Moya, Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo, who combined to beat France, should remain intact. With two former No. 1 ranked players and Roland Garros champions in Ferrero and Moya and fearless teenager Nadal, who has registered two Davis Cup-clinching match wins in three ties this season, Spain will enter the final as the heavy favorite.

"The U.S. should be worried about us," Arrese said. "They've got to come here and they'd better be prepared for clay."

The last time the Americans played on Spanish clay the result was like watching a Winnebago trying to navigate an unfamiliar detour conducted on quicksand: an uncertain start quickly gave way to a sinking feeling. The Spanish squad of Alex Corretja, Albert Costa, Ferrero and Juan Balcells (the man who prompted then U.S. captain John McEnroe to ponder the eternal question: "Who the hell is Balcells?") swept an overmatch American team of Todd Martin, Jan-Michael Gambill, Vince Spadea and Chris Woodruff off the court in a 5-0 semifinal victory in the 2000 Davis Cup semifinals staged in Santander, Spain.

The current American squad of second-ranked Andy Roddick, Mary Fish and twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan is certainly a more talented team than its predecessors who were dismissed on dirt, but faces a foreboding final without much recent success on the slow surface with the exception of last September's 3-2 victory over the host Slovak Republic on clay in a World Group playoff tie.

Despite the demands of dirt, U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe sees opportunity in the final and knows the pressure of expectations will be squarely on Spain.

"We’d have loved to have played at home but I really look forward to the challenge of going to Spain," McEnroe said. "When I looked ahead and saw the draw I was excited about going there for the final. We know that they’ve got a great team, one of the best teams in the world, if not the best team, but we’re going to prepare well and give it a shot. I think it will be a tremendous challenge and a tremendous chance to do something amazing."

It took an amazing effort from Pete Sampras to lead the U.S. to its last Davis Cup championship in 1995 as the 14-time Grand Slam champion scored two singles wins and partnered Todd Martin for a doubles victory to lift the United States to a 3-2 victory over Russia on red clay in Moscow.

Since Sampras carried the U.S. to its last Cup, American teams have split four Davis Cup ties conducted on clay.

Many of the top American juniors grow up playing on hard courts, the top American junior tournaments are staged primarily on hard courts and in recent years many of the top American man not named Agassi, Courier or Chang have found the transition from hard court to clay as easy to navigate as a dirt road that leads to the same dead end.

Instant gratification may be the American way, but a nation of fast food and fast serves has yet to find the to play slow-court tennis. In the past 50 years only four American men — Tony Trabert, Chang, Courier and Agassi — have won Roland Garros.

Unless McEnroe can somehow persuade Agassi to play the final — which is unlikely given the fact Agassi, whose 30-5 Davis Cup singles record includes a 10-2 mark on clay courts, played a limited clay-court schedule in each of the past two years and has repeatedly said he has no plans to play Davis Cup again — it is very possible McEnroe may opt for the same quartet who carried the U.S. to quarterfinal and semifinal victories.

Though all three of Roddick's Davis Cup defeats have come on clay and he has never surpassed the third round at Roland Garros, the 2003 U.S. Open champion has had some success on clay with four of his 15 career tournament titles coming on clay. Roddick is undefeated against the trio of Ferrero, Moya and Nadal though all five of those matches have come on hard court. You could ask Roddick to play on hot coals and he'd still give the same tenacious effort he brings to all surfaces, but he'll need to turn the clay-court clashes into hard-court matches: try to create mid-court opportunities to punctuate points quickly if he's to win the two singles matches the U.S. will probably need to prevail.

The Bryan twins captured the 2003 Roland Garros doubles title, are undefeated in Davis Cup competition and are quite capable of winning on all surfaces. Speed and stamina are not strong suits for Fish, whose clay-court season was limited to one match — a loss to Alex Bogomolov — due to a hip injury. As an attacking player on a slow surface, Fish is very vulnerable on clay, but he did score a significant clay-court win over Karol Kucera that leveled last September's tie against the Slovak Republic.

There may be calls for McEnroe to select Vince Spadea, who competes hard every time he steps on the court and like the No. 2 quarterback on a football team looks like an attractive option on the sidelines, but the fact that Spadea is winless against both Ferrero and Moya and has not played a Davis Cup match since falling to Ferrero in Santander four years ago makes that choice unlikely.

McEnroe is a big believer in Fish's game and while he mentioned Robby Ginepri as a possible second singles candidate, Ginepri's inexperience on clay and limited Davis Cup resume suggests McEnroe may stick with Fish.

"I think Mardy took a major step here with his win over Max Mirnyi. I don’t think there is any doubt in my mind about that," said McEnroe. "There are other guys that are close, like Robby Ginepri and Vince Spadea, who could potentially play for us. I think Mardy has the potential to be there and do it consistently for us."

Victory on a road strewn with potholes and pitfalls promises to be difficult to pull off, but McEnroe believes his team will be ready for the road trip.

"The Bryans have won the French Open; Andy Roddick has won tournaments on clay," McEnroe said. "When we go there we know we’ve going to have to play great clay court players, but it will be indoors and I think that will help us a little bit, because you can serve pretty big indoors too. It feels right, it feels good to be in the final. As I’ve said a number of times my goal was to get us in the mix every year and have a group of guys that you can count on and who are committed. I think we can say with the squad now that we can beat everybody."

Jennay
09-27-2004, 09:55 PM
hey all! :wavey: i don't know if anyone noticed but i havent been coming here FOR AGES. to be honest i just went through a bunch of horrid exams and they were horrid but oh well they are over and done with. and i have ANOTHER bunch of exams which basically my whole life depends on coming soon so i probably will only be popping in once in a while. [just to let you all know that i havent disappeared from the face of the earth or started hating this place or any of you. in fact, I MISSED THIS PLACE SO MUCH. im suffering from major mtf withdrawal lol]

anyway thanks deb and carole and all you dears who have been posting articles and pictures and updating me. :hug:

sure, the clay courts and spain don't look very optimistic but well we can always hope for a miracle can we. ;) well it isnt THAT impossible. anyway i really LOVE the spirit of the davis cup and i think all the unity among the us team is really great. i mean, you can really see in those pictures that they were playing for each other, and not just for some personal glory. IT'S GREAT. i'm happy :)
We have missed you elusive! :wavey:

I hope your exams are going good, and also hope to see you around more! :hug:

andyroxmysox12191
09-28-2004, 12:20 AM
:kiss: thanks for all the articles deb...though they DO make me stay here longer ;)
and elusive :hug: i'm happy you're back! :hug:

Golfnduck
09-28-2004, 03:09 AM
Andre playing DC would be awesome! :yeah: It would be great for both himself, the U.S. team, and the sport...and of course for me. ;)
I think a lot more people would watch the final on tv if Agassi played. Having Andy and Agassi on the same team is awesome!!!

superpinkone37
09-28-2004, 04:08 AM
thanks for the articles once again Deb :kiss:
and elusive-- happy belated birthday and good luck on everything :)

heya
09-28-2004, 09:57 AM
try to create mid-court opportunities to punctuate points quickly if he's to win the two singles matches the U.S. will probably need to prevail.
Here we go again. Ah ha, label him the burdensome nuisance/hero.
Rely on him to win both matches. Bryans don't have to play more than 1 match. Forget about the 2nd player. Blame Andy for the whole team's downfall. I say, "Stop imagining things, media & ESPN commentators. I prefer a life similar to Sampras's. Courier & Chang don't impress me."

heya
09-28-2004, 10:38 AM
Seville gets Davis Cup final in blow to Madrid
Tue 28 September, 2004 12:08

(Adds details, quotes)

MADRID, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Spain will stage the Davis Cup final against the United States in Seville rather than in Madrid after deciding the capital's high altitude would give too much of an advantage to the big-serving Americans.

The final, running from December 3 to 5, will be held at the Olympic stadium of La Cartuja in the Andalucian city, with a capacity of around 22,000 spectators around a specially constructed, covered clay court.

Madrid's Tennis Federation had lobbied hard for the rights to stage the final to boost the city's campaign for the 2012 Olympics but players and coaches vetoed the proposal, insisting on a venue at or near sea level. :yawn:

"Everyone was talking about Madrid because of the Olympics but there was a conflict of interests," Spanish Tennis Federation president Agustin Pujol said on Tuesday. :rolleyes:

The concern among the team was that playing in Madrid would give too much of an advantage to Andy Roddick and the rest the Americans. :mad:

The ball travels significantly faster through the air at high altitude, which would make Roddick, who holds the record for the fastest serve in the world at 155mph (249kph), an even more dangerous opponent. :fiery: :o :rolleyes:

"All the Americans serve like trucks," Spanish captain Jordi Arrese warned after the semi-final victory over France. :rolleyes:

Spain's top two singles players Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya learned their trade on slow clay courts and do not possess such fast serves. :rolleyes:

The seaside town of Santander was selected to host the United States when they last met in Spain in 2000 and the home side won the tie 5-0. Spain went on to win the competition for the first time that year, beating Australia in the final in Barcelona.

Barcelona offered the same venue for this year's final and there were also bids from Malaga, Santiago de Compostela, La Coruna, Valencia and the Canary Islands.

La Cartuja is generally used for athletics and soccer and staged the 2003 UEFA Cup final between Porto and Celtic.

France beat Australia on grass because France is an all-surface team.
The USA couldn't win a hardcourt match in Croatia.
The media mentions Andy's passion, power & "pathetic" game.
It never occurred to anyone that Andy's deficiencies can be attributed to his taller body type, parents' disinterest in all-court training, lazy coaching & his own indifference & inexperience.

The USA has no more than a few clay & grass courts.
Even developing countries have more clay challenger tourneys!

elusive
09-28-2004, 01:15 PM
thanks all u sweeties :hug: i didn't think anyone would rmb my birthday.

andre andre!! i don't think he will retire for quite a while yet. i hope he calls up mcEnroe :)

star
09-28-2004, 01:54 PM
"All the Americans serve like trucks,"

:haha: :haha: :haha:

Deboogle!.
09-28-2004, 03:50 PM
Wow that's a huge stadium, I hope the boys are gonna try to prepare for what that is going to feel like. 22,000 is Ashe stadium proportions and everyone will be against them.

So I'm confused... is it going to be indoors? This sounds like a stadium that was built outdoors, but then it says covered? :confused:

Well it doesn't matter, they're doing everything humanly possible to make sure we lose and they don't even really have to go to such extremes lol

tangerine_dream
09-28-2004, 06:40 PM
*snicker* What are the Spaniards afraid of? Our "big-serving" players can't even get past the second round at RG! They pretty much have the title in the bag and they're acting like Andy and Co. are actually a threat. Tee hee. :devil:

superpinkone37
09-29-2004, 03:39 AM
"All the Americans serve like trucks,"

:haha: :haha: :haha:

lol i thought that was funny too :lol: :lol: :lol:

MisterQ
09-29-2004, 03:46 AM
If Andre played it would increase USA's chances, but it's still not a done deal. Ferrero in particular has been a real tough opponent for Andre in the past, even on hard court.

Part of me would like to see Andre of course, but I would also love to see the young guys pull out an incredible upset on their own.

superpinkone37
09-29-2004, 04:02 AM
If Andre played it would increase USA's chances, but it's still not a done deal. Ferrero in particular has been a real tough opponent for Andre in the past, even on hard court.

Part of me would like to see Andre of course, but I would also love to see the young guys pull out an incredible upset on their own.

yeah i think it would be really cool if andre played, but its also really great seeing the young guys, especially if they could somehow miraculously pull through :)

heya
09-29-2004, 04:39 AM
Fish struggles on hardcourt. Do u think he can win 3 sets on clay?
Maybe McEnroe should stop bragging about his top 10 potential.

Chloe le Bopper
09-29-2004, 05:20 AM
*snicker* What are the Spaniards afraid of? Our "big-serving" players can't even get past the second round at RG! They pretty much have the title in the bag and they're acting like Andy and Co. are actually a threat. Tee hee. :devil:
It's called "having some respect for your opponent".

Sjengster
09-29-2004, 12:03 PM
Interesting that they went with him because of his big win over Kucera on clay after Roddick had screwed up against Hrbaty, but despite his cagy baseline style Kucera is hardly a master on clay himself, he's never won a title on it and went 0-6 at claycourt ATP events last year. Fish himself has actually said in interviews that with his style of play someone like Ferrero on a clay court is a very bad match-up for him, so don't expect miracles if it comes down to the deciding fifth rubber.

It probably won't get that far, but assuming the Bryans are healthy I think they'll win the doubles so all three days will be live. Roddick was competitive in both the matches he lost against France in 2002, although again the opposition was hardly of the same calibre on clay as the Spanish; I think he'll push at least one of his opponents all the way and may possibly get a singles point for the U.S., though whoever he plays would probably have to be off their game and nervous with crowd pressure and expectation. It'll be interesting to watch the battle of the no. 1s in the reverse singles and see whether Moya can finally stop choking against Roddick on a surface that significantly favours him at last.

star
09-29-2004, 01:30 PM
what i want to know is: is the person the truck, or the tennis ball?

:lol: I don't know. It's a funny image.

I get the picture of the tennis ball turning into a truck and sticking into the clay right in front of the frightened reciever. :lol:

Havok
09-29-2004, 02:20 PM
Moya is very good on hardcourt, so k.

Neely
09-29-2004, 02:26 PM
It's called "having some respect for your opponent".
yes, it could sound like that, but from a different point of view (even though you probably most likely won't accept it ;) ) it could also sound like "not accepting your own role being the favorite", "being afraid of being the favorite because they have something to lose against the USA on clay" or "making their opponents stronger than they". Such speeches sound better than saying "we are Spain, we will play on clay, the USA will get whipped 4-1 or 5-0 if they only win 3-2 at the end or even worse....

MisterQ
09-29-2004, 02:27 PM
How the Spaniards feel returning serve:

http://www.simnet.is/dori/Djupa.jpg

Havok
09-29-2004, 02:37 PM
:haha:

How the Spaniards feel returning serves ON CLAY!
http://waterrocket.uh-lab.de/images/wrcar11230001.jpg

star
09-29-2004, 03:13 PM
:haha: :haha: :haha: :haha:

That was so funny, you guys. :)

Deboogle!.
09-29-2004, 03:35 PM
LMFAO OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm still half asleep and that just......wow..... Mr Q and Naldo, I salute you :worship:

tangerine_dream
09-29-2004, 03:52 PM
omg :spit: Bwahahaha! That was way too funny you guys. :rolls: :bigcry: It really made my morning. Good reps for everybody :D

yes, it could sound like that, but from a different point of view (even though you probably most likely won't accept it ;) ) it could also sound like "not accepting your own role being the favorite", "being afraid of being the favorite because they have something to lose against the USA on clay" or "making their opponents stronger than they". Such speeches sound better than saying "we are Spain, we will play on clay, the USA will get whipped 4-1 or 5-0 if they only win 3-2 at the end or even worse....

Neely :worship:

Jennay
09-29-2004, 09:23 PM
:haha: :haha: Q and Naldo :worship:

andyroxmysox12191
09-29-2004, 10:36 PM
:sobbing: Q and nAldo....always know how to make me laugh :D

superpinkone37
09-30-2004, 12:40 AM
lol naldo and Q!! :lol:

Deboogle!.
09-30-2004, 01:41 AM
hmmm. fascinating.
=======
Controversy Stirs as Sevilla Beats out Madrid

By Matthew Cronin, TennisReporters.net

The city of Madrid and its Tennis Federation worked their butts off to get the Davis Cup final, but the return-of-serving sense of Sevilla beat out a chance to showcase the Madrid's athletic facilities for its 2012 Olympic bid. Or was a political battle that finalized the choice of sites?

Some Spanish newspapers and wire services are reporting that Madrid Tennis Federation President Pedro Munoz was furious, calling the decision a "scandal" that was a direct result of a political movement that is attempting to keep him from successfully challenging Spanish Tennis Federation president Agustin Pujol for the presidency. "The decision to pick Sevilla is unjust, something strange happened," said Munoz, who added that he knew things were going awry when he wasn't invited to the Davis Cup semifinal victory dinner. "It made me cry inside," he said. Muńoz also alleged that Sevilla had promised not to organize a bid and he was under the impression that all the officials would work together for Spain to help Madrid get the Olympic bid.

The Dec. 3-5 final will be held on clay at the soccer and track stadium of La Cartuja, with a capacity of 22,000 fans. It sounds like officials worked together instead in attempt to negate Roddick, Mardy Fish's and the Bryan Brothers' serves. Other reports have it that Spanish players and coaches vetoed the playing in the high altitude of Madrid, where the ball is speeded up :Everyone was talking about Madrid because of the Olympics but there was a conflict of interest," Pujol said.

The Spanish press is also in high gear regarding the speculation that Andre Agassi might change his mind and play Davis Cup for the first time since 2000. "It's clear that the ideal American team would include Agassi -- but those that come know that they are going to undergo much, because we are toughest on clay," Spanish Davis Cup coach Juan Avendańo said.

superpinkone37
09-30-2004, 01:56 AM
well it doesnt matter to me where they play in spain. as long as its on clay, we are at a huge disadvantage and we're gonna lose!!! :p

tangerine_dream
09-30-2004, 02:02 AM
"It made me cry inside," he said.

God, I'm so tired of fake outrage. :o

Deboogle!.
09-30-2004, 03:59 PM
*sigh* well next year's DC draw was released

We host Croatia :scared:

Havok
09-30-2004, 05:33 PM
:haha:. That's twice in 3 years.:scared:

superpinkone37
10-01-2004, 04:16 AM
wow thats gonna be a tough first round

heya
10-01-2004, 08:15 AM
Fish vs. Ljubicic :rolleyes:
Andy :inlove:

Fumus
10-01-2004, 01:51 PM
lol...didn't I rap this thread name and you guys were like "we don't need a cousin vinny, bla bla"...I see how it is...I see..

smucav
10-01-2004, 05:51 PM
For all its congenital flaws, tennis sure does irony awfully well. Roger Federer (page 78) has become the sport's best player without the benefit of a coach. Tim Henman, the Great British Hope, reached the semifinals of both the French and U.S. Opens this year but got mowed down on the lawns of Wimbledon. So, naturally, in this year that saw American males fail to win a Grand Slam singles title for the first time since 1988, the U.S. team has advanced to the Davis Cup finals. Last weekend in Charleston, S.C., the Yanks made quick work of Belarus--granted, not exactly a tennis citadel--and will play Spain in the finals on Dec. 3-5. In a marked departure from past years, the U.S. has fielded an actual team this year, not merely shotgun marriages of players who decide to participate when the urge strikes. Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and the doubles team of Bob and Mike Bryan have been unswerving in their commitment. "Davis Cup is the best thing you can do in tennis," Mike Bryan said on Saturday. "I consider this a Grand Slam final."

The final will be played in Spain, and rest assured the hosts will opt for a power-blunting clay court. (It bodes ill, given that no American man advanced to the third round of the 2004 French Open.) What's more, Mike Bryan, who faces hip surgery, may not be available. That of course would make an American victory all the more ironic--and thus perhaps likely. --L. Jon Wertheim
Court of Appeals; The U.S. men can salvage a Slam-less season by winning the Davis Cup, Sports Illustrated, October 4, 2004

Fumus
10-01-2004, 06:31 PM
Court of Appeals; The U.S. men can salvage a Slam-less season by winning the Davis Cup, Sports Illustrated, October 4, 2004

Incorrect. This season cannot be salvaged. The only thing that winning DC can give the men is a better feeling about themselves.

Havok
10-01-2004, 06:52 PM
Please change the "US Men can salvage a slam-less year" to "Andy can salvage a slam-less year" do you actually think the likes of Fish and so on would have won a slam this year?:retard: how did the bryans do in slams anyways? but they're still ranked really high, same as Andy so their year isn't a complete disaster since they didnt win slams. I agree Skyler, winning DC won't do shit about saving their year, its not like they emulated Hewitt who sucked of crap after IW of 03 and didn't do anything and NEEDED that DC win to have some credibility to a bomb-out like year.

superpinkone37
10-02-2004, 01:48 AM
i seriously dont think it was too bad of a year for andy. i mean its kinda hard to win slams when one guy (fed) is totally dominating them and practically every other tounament he is in. yeah and lost some matches he should have and didnt do as well as last year and all that but i wouldnt have expected to have a perfect summer like he did last year. thats too much to expect imo. and if they do win DC then at least andy and the boys will go into the new year not feeling dissapointed at last years results. the problem is, theyre not gonna win DC anyways.....

Deboogle!.
10-03-2004, 03:34 PM
pretty interesting from the Charleston paper
---------------
Would adding Agassi hurt or help U.S. hopes?
BY JAMES BECK
Of The Post and Courier Staff
Facing Spain on its favored red clay is quite a challenge for America's Davis Cup hopes. Adding Andre Agassi to the mix might lessen the test, but only slightly.

Captain Patrick McEnroe tried to avoid the Agassi issue last Sunday after his team had wrapped up its victory over Belarus. And with good reason.

You see, McEnroe probably plans to be the American Davis Cup leader for a few more years, win or lose in Spain. Agassi might boost the U.S. team's hopes in the final a little, but the real question might be this: At what cost?

This Davis Cup team has chemistry, Andy Roddick's huge serve and emotion, Mardy Fish's sudden arrival as possibly a player to challenge the world's best, and twins Mike and Bob Bryan's contagious bump-and-win enthusiasm. Destroy this chemistry, and it might never come back together. McEnroe obviously realizes that.

McEnroe knows Agassi is a great player. He also remembers that Agassi hasn't wanted anything to do with Davis Cup since 2000, nor during McEnroe's tenure as captain.

Another Davis Cup year will arrive quickly. Croatia will be in the United States from March 4-6 for the opening round of Davis Cup 2005. That might be good timing for Charleston, but don't look for the Davis Cup to return to Family Circle Tennis Center for several years. An early round match at Kiawah Island might actually be the next local Davis Cup offering, but probably not next year.

A win over Croatia would give the Americans another home match against Romania or send them to Belarus -- that's right, Belarus (and probably on a super-fast indoor surface with a boisterous crowd watching).

The great thing about next year, if the Americans happen to go deep into the draw again, is that both France and Spain would have to travel to the United States for any meeting with McEnroe's men.

Hello, fast surface; goodbye, red clay.

Now, it's easy to see why McEnroe probably would rather go without Agassi in Spain. Agassi would break the chemistry, then might not be available in 2005. Injuries, age and motivation might not be friends of Agassi in another year.

Of course, there is almost no room for error in the Americans' current Davis Cup strategy. It's not like the old days when Stan Smith or John McEnroe, or even Pete Sampras, could win two singles matches, as well as fill an opening in doubles better than almost anyone in the world at the time.

If Roddick or Fish happen to fall to injury during a tie, either Mike or Bob Bryan might become a liability in singles. Or if one of the Bryans were sidelined, Roddick or Fish might have problems in doubles.

Two factors played rather large roles in the latest American Davis Cup victory. Both depended on the United States being the host. Yes, the American quartet of Andy, Mardy, Mike and Bob was fabulous last weekend at Family Circle Tennis Center.

But the totally supportive crowd and favorable slow hard surface may have been equally decisive factors.

heya
10-04-2004, 12:48 AM
At what cost? LMAO!!!!
The U.S. team stinks. They were lucky this year.
McEnroe's done nothing for Andy.
He loves to manipulate people (he calls that "motivation").

PMc isn't Mr. Realistic Nice Guy. he's one of those who told
Andy to keep serving harder & harder.
POOR PMAC & DC TEAM.
What will they do when Andy gets out of the hospital in a wheelchair & quits tennis due to injuries & humiliation??

Gee, chemistry & friendship do SO MUCH for the team.

tangerine_dream
10-05-2004, 02:59 AM
I wish all this talk of Andre joining the DC team would stop. 1) it's not his team or his time anymore, and 2) He has said numerous times that he doesn't want to play it and that DC is for the younger guys, and 3) I don't want him to bail the boys out. It's their match. It's theirs to win or lose. It's their problem.

---

As an addendum to the above, here's what was said in today's SI Wertheim column:

What has to happen for Agassi to play singles alongside Roddick in the Davis Cup final? Yes, Andre says he's done with Davis Cup but helping win the cup again at this stage of his career has to be tempting. Will Patrick McEnroe put out some feelers to gauge Agassi's interest? Or would that ruffle too many feathers with the rest of the U.S. team? -- Adam Bennett, Urbana, Ill.

Here's my idea: Some enterprising and lavishly wealthy tennis fan will offer to make a multi-million dollar donation to Agassi's foundation if he plays in the Davis Cup final. Short of that, I don't like the odds. Ever since Agassi went to Zimbabwe for Davis Cup and it wreaked havoc on the rest of his season, he's been pretty adamant about these things. Though Patrick McEnroe dispensed tough love to Mardy Fish, I think the captain feels a certain loyalty to a guy who has availed himself for every tie. I would be very surprised if Fish were cast aside, sold down the river, thrown overboard ... we'll stop now.

Deboogle!.
10-13-2004, 03:35 AM
um. wow. OUCH.
========

Agassi made wrong decision on Davis Cup
Win against Spain more important than another Slam title

By Matthew Cronin, TennisReporters.net


From all reports, Andy Roddick would have willingly taken Andre Agassi back on to the Davis Cup team, even though its second singles player, Mardy Fish, is one of his best friends. That shows just how serious Roddick is about winning the Davis Cup title this year. He knows that without '99 Roland Garros champion Agassi, the US doesn't stand a great chance of upending the Spaniards on clay in Sevilla, Dec. 3-5.

But, even with the team's No. 1 asking him to come on board, Agassi doesn't want to play anymore. He permanently closed the door on Davis Cup four years ago, after the current captain Pat McEnroe's brother, John, savaged him and Pete Sampras for not playing in Santander, Spain, the week after Wimbledon. The US was butchered 5-0 with a B-level clay court team that included Jan-Michael Gambill, Todd Martin and Chris Woodruff.

When he was loving the Davis Cup life, Agassi was true warrior who produced in a big way, sporting a 30-5 record and helping the US to three titles in 1990, 1992 and 1995. But due to injury, he didn't play in the '95 final in Moscow, although he did admirably show up to cheer the heroic Sampras and the rest of team on. In 1990, he won his singles match on clay at home over Richard Fromberg in the US's 3-0 sweep of Australia. In 1992, he came up huge again at home in the final, scalding Jacob Vlasek in the US's 4-1 win over Switzerland.

AGASSI NO PANACEA FOR AWAY FINALS
But the US has never won a final away with Agassi on the team. In 1991 in Lyon, he was the only man to win a match when he punched out Guy Forget in the opener. Still, Sampras was schooled by Henri Leconte and Forget. Ken Flach/Robert Seguso lost the doubles. Agassi wasn't around for the '97 final, when Sweden blanked Sampras, Michael Chang, Todd Martin and Jonathan Stark in Goethberg. He also wasn't there the last time that the Spain and US met on grass in Houston in 2002, when Roddick came up big.

Agassi hasn't played a Davis Cup final in 12 years, but somehow, the sport's most cherished international competition isn't worth of a month of his time anymore. He has this curious notion about giving back to the game, an issue never tires speaking about. Outside of Davis Cup, give him five stars for supporting fans and tennis industry folks at nearly every tournament he plays.

Win against Spain more important than another Slam title
But why he doesn't believe that Davis Cup is no longer an integral part of the health of sport is befuddling. Outside of the Slams, it's the one competition that gets people talking. If he had decided to play, the profile of the tie and sport itself would rise to the heavens during the first week of December. Without him, coverage of the event will be pushed to page D6 in most of America's sports section. With him, coverage has a shot at D-1 every day.

But Agassi isn't willing to take the individual risk. He's certainly a team player with his family, friends and at the tournaments he loves, but he's no longer the ultimate locker room leader in his nation's most important team competition. His decision to opt out and say that he's put enough time in is a clear indication
that individual on-court goals are far more important to him then team ones.

Sure, it would take Agassi a good three weeks to train on red clay and he could suffer an injury during one of his matches in Sevilla, which would ruin the 34-year-old's chance of winning the one Grand Slam that he is still has an outside shot at: the '05 Australian Open. But, historically, would winning a ninth Slam title definitively put him over fellow eight-time Slammers Ivan Lendl and Jimmy Connors in the all-time great Top-10 list, or would a another Davis Cup crown where he has to beat the likes of former Roland Garros victors Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya at the age of 34 be the notch in his belt he really needs?

You could argue it either way, but Agassi is missed one very important factor when he considered the subject: He has a better shot at winning two matches in Spain than he does the Australian Open. Why? Simple. No Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt or Roddick standing across the net from him.

Yes, Ferrero and Moya are very formidable opponents on clay when they are healthy and playing well. But Ferrero has been a sick puppy all year long and isn't the player who took out Agassi at '03 Roland Garros and the '03 US Open. Moya may have an impressive Davis Cup record, but he has very beatable this year and is always vulnerable in big matches.

CAN ANDRE WIN BIG ON CLAY?
So two questions rise: Does Andre no longer think that he has the goods to win a big clay court match? Is he ducking the competition? Maybe not (if you're a longtime Agassi fan who lives in the US and knows his track record). But, if you're living in Spain, the thought has certainly crossed your mind. Just read the Spanish press on Wednesday. Hell, Moya and Ferrero ducked the US on grass back in 2000, so why would international fans think any differently about Agassi's attitude toward playing on clay away in a hostile environment?

It's also possible that Agassi – who has never played under Patrick McEnroe – doesn't feel he's completely welcome on the team and doesn't want to fiddle with good chemistry between McEnroe, Roddick, Fish and the Bryan brothers. But Roddick, with whom he is very friendly, went to great lengths on Monday night at the World TeamTennis exhibition in Irvine, Calif. to say that the boys would love to have their best clay courter on the team. In saying this, Roddick knew that Fish would be the odd man out. But Roddick knows his team's best chance to win is with double A on board. McEnroe, Fish and the Bryans know that, too, even if McEnroe would prefer to go with the guys who got them there. It appears that McEnroe values loyalty more than a definitive big W. Who is going to argue with that noble philosophy?

Getting to the final is a nice achievement for the US, but given that the Americans have won the Cup record 31 times and haven't won the crown in eight years, only taking home the trophy will be satisfying to fans. Without Agassi, the US still has a puncher's chance. With Agassi, the US would go in with at least a 50-50 chance. Agassi knows that and doesn't seem to care. For the general health of the game and for Agassi's legacy, that is a sad state of affairs.

Golfnduck
10-13-2004, 03:54 AM
I was hoping that Agassi would play Davis Cup, but I totally understand that he's done with that part of his life.

MisterQ
10-13-2004, 04:21 AM
It's a harsh article, imo. What if Andre did go to Spain, break up the existing team dynamic, and still lose? (A totally conceivable prospect on clay against those players, btw). It would be brave and noble to take on the challenge, but I don't think he should be castigated for not doing it. It will involve a lot of additional stress to play the final. If he does decide last minute to do such a thing, though, :hatoff: to him.

Deboogle!.
10-13-2004, 04:29 AM
yes, Q, I agree. I thought it was unnecessarily harsh. It smells of personal disdain for Andre, or something. I think Cronin makes some interesting points but the way he presents it all is just definitely harsh, almost excessively so. I disagree with his analysis, anyway, and I am with you, I think the US would still lose, because no offense to Andre I don't know if he could pull off a win or two on clay against the top clay-courters, not to mention all those other intangibles like being in Spain, etc. Andre hasn't won a match on clay...in....a veryyyyyyyyy long time. I mean yes it would've been nice of him to play, and actually I don't think he would have broken up the group dynamic that much because it seems like he and Andy have grown rather close over the past year or so (which I think is WONDERFUL), but to chastise his decision seems unfair.

Havok
10-13-2004, 05:10 AM
He has a better shot at winning two matches in Spain than he does the Australian Open. Why? Simple. No Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt or Roddick standing across the net from him.

Um.... does this guy forget that Agassi beat both Hewitt and Roddick at Cincy this year? It's not like Agassi vs these 3 guys will get beaten up terribly by. All 3 can beat him, but Andre can beat them as well. Sometimes, these writters just waste words.:retard:

Deboogle!.
10-13-2004, 05:14 AM
Um.... does this guy forget that Agassi beat both Hewitt and Roddick at Cincy this year? It's not like Agassi vs these 3 guys will get beaten up terribly by. All 3 can beat him, but Andre can beat them as well. Sometimes, these writters just waste words.:retard:

What's scary is that he's like one of the bigger, highly-regarded ones :scared: Karen Crouse is :retard: but at least she doesn't really pretend to be objective :lol: Some of the better articles I read are ones from these small papers when there's a tournament in town. These big fancy tennis writers can be really disappointing. I thought this one from Cronin is one of the worst I've read in a while :o

superpinkone37
10-13-2004, 05:36 AM
ouch. that article is pretty harsh.
i kinda wanted andre to play DC but i totally inderstand why hes not going to....

tangerine_dream
10-15-2004, 04:27 AM
I'm so glad to see Mardy working hard and practicing on assuming this position because it's going to come in handy when the Spaniards give it to him good at DC later this year. :o

http://www.andyroddick.com/images/news/11206_112304_butts.jpg

Deboogle!.
10-15-2004, 04:32 AM
:haha: :haha: :haha: :haha:

Deboogle!.
10-15-2004, 06:15 AM
McEnroe did offer Agassi spot on Davis Cup team
Rest of team would have supported Andre coming aboard

By Matthew Cronin, TennisReporters.net

US captain Patrick McEnroe did call and offer Andre Agassi a spot on the Davis Cup team that will travel Spain, Dec. 3-5, for the final on clay, but the US' most formidable clay courter couldn’t be convinced to play.

"Of course I offered him a spot," McEnroe told TennisReporters.net. "I've offered him a spot every time we’ve played. He’s Andre Agassi. Did I get down on my knees and beg him to play? No. But did I ask him and do I think we’d have a better chance to win with him on the team? Yes. But that doesn’t mean that I still don’t think we have a good chance to win, because I do … I respect Andre’s decision to stick with his reasons for not playing. He’s certainly given enough to Davis Cup in the past."

TR.net was mistaken in reporting on Wednesday in that McEnroe didn’t place a call to Agassi after the US beat Belarus in the semifinals.

McEnroe said that he talked to Agassi at the US Open about the possibility of playing and then called him a couple of weeks later. But even though '99 Roland Garros champion Agassi was positive about the team and what McEnroe has done to get them to the final, he reiterated his the decision that he made in 2000 to move on with his life and career and free himself of the time commitment it takes to play Davis Cup.

"Andre is not the kind of guy who’s going to play when it’s convenient," McEnroe said. "If he were going to play Davis Cup again, it would have been for the whole year. He’s stubborn after he makes decisions, but that’s one of the reasons why he’s successful. He sticks with the plans that he believes in."

Eight-time Grand Slam champion Agassi said earlier this week that he changed his priorities in 2000 and wasn’t about to change them again. "It’s not going to be based on circumstances as to why all of a sudden I do play," Agassi said. "I didn’t play because we didn’t have a team that could win it. So I’m certainly not going to make a decision to play based on the fact that we have an opportunity to win it. These guys have worked hard to put themselves in that position. They deserve it. I wish them all the luck. I’ve been there. I’ve done it. I did it for 12 years, and I’ve chosen to give myself the freedom from playing so that I can give back as much as possible for as long as possible to this sport that’s been so good to me. I will continue to do that. But, at 34 years old, with two children, a business, the foundation, traveling 25, 30 weeks a year, I don’t have the same that I used to give."

DISCUSSION COVERED PRESENT TEAM
McEnroe said that the discussed the possibility of Agassi playing with his current team – Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and the Bryan brothers. He said that all of them were supportive of the idea, even though had Agassi been named to the squad, Fish would have been left off the team. "I’ve been very supportive of Mardy and am always trying to push him to improve," McEnroe said. "But he hasn’t solidified himself as the automatic No. 2 player yet. With that said, if he gets himself in unbelievable shape, I do think he can win in Sevilla. He has the type of game that should be adaptable to clay."

Spain is expected to name former Roland Garros champs Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya to play singles, and youngsters Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal to play doubles. Given that Roddick and Fish had little success on clay this year and the Bryans have been slumping, as of late, the US will be listed a serious underdogs. But McEnroe believes in his team’s chances. "Sure we’re underdogs, but that doesn’t mean we can’t win," he said. "This isn’t the clay court season or Roland Garros. This is one tie where every guy only has to win one match. If they do that, we’ll win."

McEnroe added the Mike Bryan appears too have fully recovered from his hip injury and won’t have to undergo surgery. The US captain also said he wouldn’t be surprised if Roddick pulled out of a couple of the upcoming European tournaments as he has made the Davis Cup final his priority and doesn’t want to overtax his body.

snaillyyy
10-15-2004, 06:30 AM
Thanks for the article Deb :) ;)
Glad to hear that Mike Bryans hip seems to have improved, and I truthfully am not surprised to hear Andy may pull out of more :rolleyes:

Golfnduck
10-15-2004, 05:53 PM
I hope that Mike Bryan feels better. Hip injuries suck. Andy better not pull out of anymore tourneys, or he'll have to answer to me :mad:

Golfnduck
10-15-2004, 05:56 PM
Please change the "US Men can salvage a slam-less year" to "Andy can salvage a slam-less year" do you actually think the likes of Fish and so on would have won a slam this year?:retard: how did the bryans do in slams anyways? but they're still ranked really high, same as Andy so their year isn't a complete disaster since they didnt win slams. I agree Skyler, winning DC won't do shit about saving their year, its not like they emulated Hewitt who sucked of crap after IW of 03 and didn't do anything and NEEDED that DC win to have some credibility to a bomb-out like year.
Fish had no chance in hell of winning a slam this year. Andy and the Bryans did, but we all know how that went. If Andy wins both of his matches and the Bryans win theirs, GAME OVER!!!

Havok
10-15-2004, 06:29 PM
Andy at least play Paris Masters, dont be a total fuckshit.

superpinkone37
10-15-2004, 06:43 PM
yeah, im over being mad at him about madrid and all that and i just want him to be healthy and prepared...but if he skips all three, thats a long time without a real match. how is that being prepared? besides, it wouldnt hurt to get a few points so hes more likly to keep his number 2 ranking. he better at least play paris...

heya
10-15-2004, 08:27 PM
"Andre is not the kind of guy who’s going to play when it’s convenient," McEnroe said. "If he were going to play Davis Cup again, it would have been for the whole year. He’s stubborn after he makes decisions, but that’s one of the reasons why he’s successful. He sticks with the plans that he believes in."
PMc can control Tank Job Andy.
This is the same :o coach/CAPTAIN who came on Don Imus's show & laughed at Andy and the other players.

"I’ve been very supportive of Mardy and am always trying to push him to improve," McEnroe said. "But he hasn’t solidified himself as the automatic No. 2 player yet. With that said, if he gets himself in unbelievable shape, I do think he can win in Sevilla. He has the type of game that should be adaptable to clay." This motivator is stubborn! LMFAO

andyroxmysox12191
10-15-2004, 09:25 PM
so mike is better???? :banana: yay for no surgery!

Black Adam
10-16-2004, 07:48 PM
hey i don't not know what happened but can someone pliz tell me how agassi's DC apperance in Zimbabwe ruined his season ???

star
10-16-2004, 08:28 PM
yes, Q, I agree. I thought it was unnecessarily harsh. It smells of personal disdain for Andre, or something. I think Cronin makes some interesting points but the way he presents it all is just definitely harsh, almost excessively so. I disagree with his analysis, anyway, and I am with you, I think the US would still lose, because no offense to Andre I don't know if he could pull off a win or two on clay against the top clay-courters, not to mention all those other intangibles like being in Spain, etc. Andre hasn't won a match on clay...in....a veryyyyyyyyy long time. I mean yes it would've been nice of him to play, and actually I don't think he would have broken up the group dynamic that much because it seems like he and Andy have grown rather close over the past year or so (which I think is WONDERFUL), but to chastise his decision seems unfair.


Andre made it to the quarters last year at Roland Garros. I don't know that I would call that a veryyyyyyyy long time ago. It' a better result than either Mardy or Andy have ever had.

Andre has always had minimal intrest in Davis Cup.

heya
10-17-2004, 12:55 AM
He didn't care when he scheduled Thailand right after DC.
Suddenly, he wanted to impress the audience at DC even when he wasn't
physically fit. He'll never learn from his mistakes because he'll
play another dead rubber & watch Mardy's dead rubber in the future too.
After I saw the clips of him at Thailand,
it's obvious to me that he doesn't mind injuring himself & to give up.
No one forces him to
concentrate & to stop wasting time fooling around before big events.
He doesn't want to admit that his desire & game are slipping quickly.
Everytime he talks, he always says there's nothing to fret over.

J. Corwin
10-17-2004, 01:14 AM
Having Andre on the team is cool but I don't think it gives the U.S. a great chance to win, honestly. Cronin is being disrespectful and I have lost some respect for him as a writer. Andre has said it again and again why he chooses not to play and needs no further explanation.

I'm ok with andy pulling out as long as he wins D.C. ;)...but since that is no guarantee and we'll prolly lose anyway...he better play Paris and Houston too.

Black Adam
10-17-2004, 06:52 PM
hey i don't not know what happened but can someone pliz tell me how agassi's DC apperance in Zimbabwe ruined his season ???

Deboogle!.
10-17-2004, 07:42 PM
:confused: I have absolutely no clue.... Maybe Q knows????

star
10-17-2004, 10:57 PM
It was after the AO and the tie was in Zimbabwe. It was a surprisingly close tie as I recall. It was played at a bit of altitude too, I believe. Anyway, Andre got dreadfully sick during the tie. I don't know if it was from dehydration and the altitude or exactly what, but he has stated that the experience left him debilitated for some period of time and he wasn't going to play Davis Cup anymore.

star
10-17-2004, 11:07 PM
It took a bit of doing, but I found some of the story. A more painstaking search would get you all the gory details, I am sure.

Unlike Sampras, Agassi has played for the red, white and blue (Davis Cup) whenever possible this year, which may have cost him at three of the four 2000 Grand Slam events -- the French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open.

Agassi, who recently disclosed that his mother and sister are both suffering from breast cancer, has taken a slide this season, perhaps the direct result of overworking himself by playing both ATP Tour and Davis Cup tennis. He has not been the same player since a Davis Cup outing against host Zimbabwe in February, when the American had a vomiting exit from the old arena in Harare.

star
10-17-2004, 11:10 PM
I also think part of the problem there was that both Sampras and Agassi had comitted to play in Zimbabwe, but Sampras reneged. That left Andre holding the bag and when the U.S. doubles team lost, Andre was under tremendous pressure and had to extend himself even when debilitated. As I recall Chris Woodruff was the hero of that tie because he had to win his match for the U.S. to advance.

star
10-17-2004, 11:13 PM
Here's more:
By Phil Axelrod, Post-Gazette Staff Writer







Bob Ruzanic has been involved in tennis for the past four decades and figured he had seen just about everything there was to see in the world of tennis.

Then he traveled to Zimbabwe in early February.

"Nothing prepared me for that experience," said Ruzanic, 63, a native of the Pittsburgh area who is chairman of the Davis Cup committee that oversees the general activities involving the U.S. Davis Cup.

Amid tribal chantings, a pounding beat of drums and a colorfully costumed witch doctor waving his arms and legs frantically on the sideline, the United States team defeated Zimbabwe, 3-2, in the first round of the 2000 Davis Cup.

It was raining and the roof leaked in the Sports Complex in Harare, capital of Zimbabwe. Half the lights didn't work and shadows covered the court and the 4,000 or so spectators sweated out the U.S. victory because the air conditioning system was broken.

"It was 90 degrees outside," Ruzanic said with a laugh. "The whole thing was surreal."

Deboogle!.
10-17-2004, 11:22 PM
wow thanks for doing all the research! :hug: Sounds like that was just a horrible experience for Andre and the rest of the US team. Too bad that the one bad experience turned him off from DC, though :(

star
10-17-2004, 11:25 PM
I'm sure it wasn't just one bad experience. He's been having a war with the USTA for years anyway, and also he's tried to get the DC format changed to once every two years. I think that tie was the icing on the cake.

He may have played in the Czech Republic tie after that........ but he refers back to that Zimbabwe tie. Also around that time his sister and mother were ill..... so I think it was a really terrible time for him.

Deboogle!.
10-17-2004, 11:26 PM
I'm sure it wasn't just one bad experience. He's been having a war with the USTA for years anyway, and also he's tried to get the DC format changed to once every two years. I think that tie was the icing on the cake.

ohhhh I didn't know about that. Makes sense.

Also around that time his sister and mother were ill..... so I think it was a really terrible time for him.

Yes, it sounds like it :(

Deboogle!.
10-19-2004, 04:39 PM
Here's Mike and Bob's interview from today, it's mostly about Davis cup :)
---------
Bryan brothers say American team is “excited” for the Davis Cup final


Madrid, October 19th 2004 - Interview with Bryan brothers, who have won their first round match against Andy Ram and Marat Safin by 6-2 and 6-4.

Q. For the Davis Cup, how do you see the matches?
BOB BRYAN: I think everyone on the American team is definitely really excited for the Davis Cup. You know, it's hard not to think about it every day. Even this indoor season, the rest of the year, it's kind of just a lead up to the big event at the end of the year for us.
We want to finish No. 1. But that's our last big goal, is Davis Cup.

Q. The Spanish players will likely be Nadal and Robredo. What do you think of that team?
MIKE BRYAN: I think they're a good team. They've had some good results recently. They're a different team because they stay back and they're going to, you know, hit big groundstrokes. We're used to playing players that serve and volley. So that will be a little different.
You know, obviously we've got to be pretty sharp. I think the doubles is big for this tie because Spain is favored in the singles; it's on clay. I think a big emphasis is going to be on the doubles. I think we're a little favored right now, but it's going to be a tough match.

Q. In Seville, there's going to be around 20,000 fans. How are you going to manage the pressure?
BOB BRYAN: Yeah, I think it's going to be, you know, a great atmosphere maybe the greatest atmosphere we've ever played in. I think it's going to make for a really fun match and really exciting.
You know, we love that it's 20,000 people. Seville, I hear it's a very beautiful city. I think it's only going to help. It's going to help the Spanish players, for sure. They're going to have the crowd on their side, the momentum.
But, you know, it's going to be fun for us to go in there and try to climb up the hill and beat a great team in front of a huge crowd.
I think if they win the match at home, it will be really special for them, they'll be able to celebrate with their fans. But, you know, if we win, we know we've done something great going in there and beating 20,000 fans and a great team.

Q. Do you consider yourself favorites going into that Nadal match?
MIKE BRYAN: I'd like to think so. You know, we've been playing together 26 years. You know, they're a new team. Obviously they've had some good results, and there's going to have the fans on their side. But we just played way more matches than they have.
You know, we can play on clay, too. We won the French Open last year. But they're a different team. They're a tough team. They're going to be smashing groundstrokes at us. Davis Cup matches, there's a lot of energy, so they're going to be fired up. They're going to be playing their best tennis.
We're just going to have to be really sharp and we're going to take a week off after the Houston Masters Cup and get on that clay as soon as possible to get ready for them.

Q. Do you know anything about Sevilla? What have you heard about the city?
BOB BRYAN: I mean, everyone that I've talked to says they love Seville and they say, "You're going to have a great time." I've just heard that it's beautiful. I haven't seen pictures of it.
But, you know, I might do some research and check it out before we go there. Actually someone just pointed it out to me on a map. I didn't really know where it was. Now I know it's in the south of Spain.
But we're all really happy that it's in a beautiful city. It's going to be a lot of fun. I think we're going to stay downtown. There are nice restaurants. Just makes for a good time.

Q. It's been a while since the United States has been in a Davis Cup final. What does it mean for you? Where do you place that in your career as far as Grand Slams?
MIKE BRYAN: I talked to Andy. I know Mardy, they rank this right up there with winning Grand Slams. You know, Davis Cup is really special to all of us. Now that we haven't got a Grand Slam this year and Andy hasn't got one, I don't think any American got one, we're putting our focus on this tie.
You know, the US hasn't won a Davis Cup since '95. It makes it a little bit more special. We got a young team. Hopefully this team can stick together and we can have glory days like Agassi and Sampras. But, you know, this tie is going to be a challenge, and we're looking forward to it.

Q. How much more confident would you feel if Agassi was on the team?
BOB BRYAN: You can look at it both ways. You know, Agassi is one of the clutchest (sic) players of all time. He's won so many matches in Grand Slams, that you want a player like that playing a big match like a Davis Cup match.
Also, he's been there, he's played 12 years of Davis Cup. You know, maybe he's had his time. This team has earned this chance to go into Spain and try to beat a great team like the Spanish team. Maybe if Andre played, he'd be taking a spot away from a player who has earned it.
We've talked to him. We don't expect Andre Agassi to play the match. And I think he said yesterday he feels like he would be taking a spot from a Mardy Fish or Ginepri who has earned the spot. It's nice of him to think of the other players. But he's had 12 good years of Davis Cup, and it does take a lot out of your body emotionally and physically.

Black Adam
10-19-2004, 05:25 PM
thnx skwerl for the info

andyroxmysox12191
10-19-2004, 08:16 PM
:kiss: thanks deb!

superpinkone37
10-20-2004, 01:33 AM
thanks Deb :)

smucav
10-20-2004, 09:08 PM
Tennis Week: Do you give the United States a shot to upset Spain in the Davis Cup final?

Mats Wilander: Yes, I do. I'd say that Andy Roddick, in one match, has a chance against anyone on any surface anywhere in the world. Now if you were asking Roddick to win six clay-court matches against a Ferrero, Moya or Nadal or win four out of six against that caliber player then his chances might be slim. But in one match what is there to stop Roddick, who is second in the world, from beating Moya or Ferrero or Nadal? Roddick is basically the favorite against anyone on any surface except Federer. So I'd say it's completely open and the fact that the United States has a really good doubles team in the Bryan brothers gives you guys a chance in the final.

The Tennis Week Interview: Mats Wilander (http://www.sportsmediainc.com/tennisweek/index.cfm?func=showarticle&newsid=11641&bannerregion=)

Deboogle!.
10-20-2004, 11:31 PM
Interesting!

Here's what Mardy has to say.
======

American Fish Confident About Tough Davis Cup Final

By Emma Graham-Harrison
MADRID (Reuters) - The U.S. Davis Cup team is gearing up for a tough final against strong Spanish opponents on an unfavorable surface but are optimistic about beating their hosts, said their semi-final team member Mardy Fish.

The big-serving U.S. players like fast courts but Spain has decided that the December final will be on clay in the southern city of Seville, which is at a much lower altitude than the capital Madrid, meaning the balls will travel slower.

"We prefer faster courts than...the slowest (possible) red clay that I'm sure (Spain) will put it (the final) on," Fish said at the Madrid masters tournament, where he lost to Romanian Andrei Pavel in the second round.

"They play extremely well at home. I think it is definitely one of the toughest match-ups that we can encounter."

However, a team including world number two Andy Roddick and powerful doubles duo Mike and Bob Bryan meant the Americans will be heading to Spain convinced they can win.

"Andy and the Bryan brothers haven't even lost a set yet (in a Davis Cup match) this year. We're extremely confident in that aspect," said the Olympic silver medallist.

"We don't have to beat them in an entire tournament. We don't even have to win five times...all you need is three points," he added.

================

Fish says Spain will have advantage in Davis Cup final

Ciaran Giles / Associated Press
Posted: 1 hour ago



MADRID, Spain (AP) - U.S. player Mardy Fish believes the clay-court environment will strongly favor Spain when they meet in the Davis Cup final in December.

Spain's natural choice of an outdoor clay court in Seville for the tie from Dec. 3-5 put the home side at an immediate advantage, Fish said on Wednesday.
"Madrid would have been a little bit better for us, because the altitude makes the ball go a little bit faster," he said. "And Seville it's going to go slower, which helps them. That's why it's going to be tough. There's no doubt about it."

Fish, eliminated in the Madrid Masters first round on Tuesday, said Spain was the toughest opponent they could have met.

"I think if you close your eyes and you say, 'Who is the toughest Davis Cup match away?' I think it would most likely be Spain."

Spain will be able to line up former French Open champions Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya in their bid to win the Cup for the first time since 2000, when Spain swept aside the United States 5-0 at home in the semifinals. It's the Spaniards' third final in five years.

Nevertheless, the United States will be confident and competitive, Fish said.

He and Andy Roddick had won clay tournaments, and the Bryan twins had won the French Open doubles.

"We think that we can play with these guys," said Fish. "We don't have to beat them in an entire tournament. We have to beat them, hopefully, only one time.

"If Andy can get a win, I can get a win, the Bryan brothers can get a win, that's all you need is three points," he added.

"We're confident because Andy and the Bryan brothers haven't even lost a set this year. We're in the finals. You know, we couldn't have done any better."

The United States won its three Cup ties on hard court this year, and hasn't played on clay since last year.

"That's the reason why the Davis Cup is so special, in my opinion," Fish said. "Because you get to play at home, you get to pick the surface, you get to pick where you're going to play."

Spain reached the Davis Cup final by defeating France 4-1 while the United States downed Belarus 4-0.

The United States has won the Davis Cup a record 31 times but hasn't made the final since 1997 and last won in 1995.

Nishy
10-21-2004, 12:42 AM
smucav, Deb, Thanks for the article.
About Wilander's comment, it reminds me his comment on ESPN at USO this year that J Johansson can beat Andy if Johansson does best. He was right about that.

superpinkone37
10-21-2004, 01:38 AM
i was thinking about that too nishy and i remember really wanting andy to prove him wrong. but then he lost :o hopefully wilander is right this time too though

Deboogle!.
10-22-2004, 01:17 AM
Here's the full transcript of Mardy's press conference yesterday.
========

2004 ATP MASTERS SERIES
MADRID, SPAIN

October 20, 2004

MARDY FISH

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Mardy.

Q. After the Athens Olympic Games, things you're seeing here in Spain, what do you think about the next Davis Cup final, about the potential of the top Spanish players like Ferrero - you beat him in Athens - and all the entourage?

MARDY FISH: Well, first of all, we're obviously extremely happy to be in the finals. We have Roddick, obviously one of the best players in the world, the Bryan brothers, obviously one of the best teams in the world. You know, we're confident. I think if you close your eyes and you say, "Who is the toughest Davis Cup match away," I think it would most likely be Spain. I think a lot of teams -- I mean, Spain or Argentina, Spain probably being the toughest, in my opinion. I think they play great at home. Ferrero, he hasn't been playing the way he normally plays this year, or the better part of the last -- the last part of this year. I think he forgets all about that. He plays well. Moya plays well. In my opinion, he's not playing the way -- as well as he could play. Obviously, I think he's one of the best players in the world. They throw that all out and he plays extremely well, and they play extremely well at home. I think it's definitely one of the toughest match-ups for us that we can encounter. We prefer faster courts than I'm sure the slowest red clay possible court that they're going to put it on. Again, like I said, we're extremely excited and we're going to be fit and we're going to be ready and we're going to be trying our butts off to try to win.

Q. You heard about the controversy to play in Madrid, with the height of Madrid, and Seville is sea level, slowing down the serves, and the clay courts. What do you think about that?

MARDY FISH: Well, obviously that's the reason that Davis Cup is so special, in my opinion, because you get to play at home, you get to pick the surface, you get to pick where you're going to play. Madrid would have been a little bit better for us because of the altitude, make the ball go a little bit faster. And Seville, it's going to go slower, which helps them. That's the beauty of Davis Cup. That's why it's going to be tough. I mean, there's no doubt about it. We're going to bring it, though. We're going to try to play as well as we can.

Q. You said you have confidence in the US team. Where does this confidence come from if you think so highly of the Spanish team?

MARDY FISH: Well, I mean, we're confident in ourselves. We're confident with the way that we think we can play. We think that we can play with these guys. I mean, it's Davis Cup. We don't have to beat them in an entire tournament. We don't have to beat them five times. We have to beat them only hopefully one time. If Andy can get a win, I can get a win, the Bryan brothers can get a win, that's all you need, is three points. You don't need to win an entire tournament. So, you know, I mean, we're confident because, you know, Andy, and the Bryan brothers haven't even lost a set yet this year. We're extremely confident in that aspect. We're in the finals. You know, we couldn't have done any better. We've lost one match so far this year. We couldn't have done any better -- can't do any better, so we're obviously pretty happy with where we are.

Q. You said Andy is one of the best players in the world, and the Bryan brothers are one of the best teams in the world. How do you rate yourself inside the team? What is your role in the team?

MARDY FISH: Well, I guess being the No. 2 singles guy, you have to play the No. 1 guy on the first day, and you try to get out and steal -- kind of like, you know, if you're playing a good team like Spain, you know, most likely Ferrero would be, or Moya would probably be their top guy or their No. 1 guy. You know, you get out and you try -- whichever you play first or you play second that day, you know, you try to get out and try to get a win, try to steal a win. So the first day we're going against the tougher of the two. But, I mean, with the Spanish team, there is no tougher - they're all tough. I'd like to think that I've played some big matches in Davis Cup, and I'd like to think that I'm pretty experienced. I mean, none of us have played a final, but I've been on the team when we played the semis in France, and I've been on the team when we beat Belarus. Experience-wise, I think we're okay. That's kind of where my role is on the team, I guess.

Q. There have been Davis Cup captains in the past like Yannick Noah, brought a special atmosphere to the team. How is Patrick McEnroe in this role?

MARDY FISH: Well, apart from being very experienced in tennis, period, he's almost like one of the guys. He's very easy to get along with, very fun. We have a great time together. I mean, you can include the whole team, like the trainers and the doctors, whatnot, the massage people. But we feel like us five, you know, have really -- really have a special bond. When we win a match, we feel like we win it for each other, we don't win it for ourselves, we win it for them. If I win one, I win it for them, I feel like. I'm sure they feel the same way. It's a special bond. We get along great. We spend a lot of time together. Yeah, I mean, we enjoy ourselves out there and we have fun.

Q. If Agassi had played - Agassi said his time in Davis Cup had past, but if he had played, how would you have felt about that?

MARDY FISH: Well, I obviously probably wouldn't play too often if Agassi and Roddick were playing. I mean, you can't really get much better than those guys. But, I mean, it would be different. I mean, obviously I wouldn't have played as many. But I think he's pretty adamant about the fact that he's done his part with Davis Cup. Let that be said. He's played a lot of big Davis Cup ties, played for the United States a long time and made himself available every time. You know, I think he's fulfilled that part of his goals. I'm sure he had a lot of goals for when he played in Davis Cup, and to win Davis Cup, which he did. I think that part of his tennis goals are over. But to answer your question, I wouldn't really -- I don't think I would have too much a role besides maybe a cheerleader.

Golfnduck
10-22-2004, 01:43 AM
I'm so excited for the Davis Cup final!!! I really want to see some tennis and see Andy play. Hopefully he is healthy and ready to go!!!

Deboogle!.
10-22-2004, 11:13 PM
This article is from the LONDON TIMES. You'd think one of the best papers in the world would have done a little better research and seen that Andre does not WANT to play!

But, it's kind of neat that the first time Andy went to a DC tie is the last time Andre played a DC Final...
-----------------
Final shot at Davis Cup glory may be enough to tempt Agassi
From Neil Harman, Tennis Correspondent, in Madrid



ANDRE AGASSI last played in the Davis Cup in 2000, when he was sick behind the court in Harare, and bowed out in Los Angeles, having won all four singles matches that year in straight sets. The United States were dispatched from the competition in the semi-finals, on a clay court in Spain, having fielded a team of Todd Martin, Vince Spadea, Jan-Michael Gambill and Chris Woodruff.
Ever since, Agassi has steered clear of the event, remarking that he had done his bit for President — the one he won’t vote for next month — and country. It was someone else’s turn and he would never be tempted back. Here, as Spain and the US ponder what each other’s sides may be for December’s final on clay in Seville, there is a feeling that Agassi could yet be prised from his self-imposed exile.



The Spain management, armed with intelligence from fellow players, is convinced he will return. The 34-year-old looks in better shape this week than he has for months, possibly years. There is not an ounce of fat on him, he is striking the ball as sweetly as ever and has already committed himself to another year on the tour. Whether or not he qualifies for the Masters Cup in Houston next month by winning the tournament here, the French Open champion of 1999 remains his country’s best clay-court player.

Spain have two former French Open champions, Carlos Moyŕ and Juan Carlos Ferrero, in their ranks, while the expected first-choice singles players for the US, Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish, have won a total of three matches at Roland Garros (all to Roddick). Even given Ferrero’s poor form and his oddly timed switch of rackets from Prince to Head, he is spending the next six weeks practising on clay with his new weapon and will not be overlooked by Jordi Arrese, the captain.

What could cloud Spain’s optimistic outlook more than Agassi having a change of heart and offering his services to Patrick McEnroe, the US captain, and his colleagues? The entire complexion of the final would be altered and the competition would be brilliantly enhanced. Agassi is saying nothing, nor are those closest to him, but there is a distinct edge about him here and it is hard to escape the feeling that he would love to play a fifth final for the US, 12 years after his last, which came against Switzerland in Fort Worth, Texas.

tangerine_dream
10-23-2004, 09:02 PM
Do you guys ever wonder that maybe Mardy could be more of a liability for team USA than an asset?

I always get the feeling, from watching their matches and listening to their interviews, that Mardy is the "black sheep" of the group---meaning that he's the one teammate that the others simply cannot count on 100%. He's still "iffy" and needs a lot of hand-holding. And it sucks for Mardy because he must know that everybody is holding up their end of the bargain---except him. His win over Bjorkman in Charleston was a good win for him but would the result have been the same if Mardy had played the first rubber instead of the second? Mardy is good if he plays the second rubber after Andy (who usually wins, therefore the pressure to win isn't all on Mardy), but he almost always blows it when he's first rubber. Too much pressure and expectation, I guess. The guy just can't play under pressure.

BUT. He DID play under enormous pressure in the Slovak Republic when Andy blew the first rubber and it was a do-or-die situation for Mardy to win the second rubber....and he actually did win it. On clay, on foreign territory, no less. The big question is: can Mardy do it again if Andy should fall in Spain?

Spain will be a lot worse than the Slovak Republic. In this sense, I am glad that Mardy went through that nightmarish Olympic final because that's exactly the kind of hostile, anti-American audience he's going to be dealing with in Spain. Slovak was kind in comparison.

Many people seem to think that PMac should go with Agassi (who won't do it) or Spadea (yikes). Spadea is certainly a better player on clay than Mardy. But here's the thing: Spadea's presence would almost kill the team spirit and comraderie that team USA is known for. They get their strength from each other. The players feed off of that friendship and to throw such an unpopular outsider as Spadea in the mix would kind of kill their momentum, don't you think? It's like inviting a stranger into their mix and Vinny, quite frankly, just doesn't fit in with that group. He's not one of them; never has been, never will be. If PMac chose Vinny over Mardy, then the cohension of the team unit would fall apart, IMO. Well, maybe not fall completely apart, but it would certainly be uneasy, bad company.

As for Andy, I partly agree with Wilander. Andy will be a tough opponent even though it's on clay, and even if he goes up against Nadal or Ferrero. Then again, Nadal and Ferrero will be tougher, too, playing on their best surface in front of a home crowd. Still, Andy's chances of winning one or two matches on clay for DC are a lot better than his chances are of winning RG. He cares about DC. I don't think he cares as much about RG.

The Bryan brothers are a threat no matter what surface they're on. The only thing that could hurt their chances are Mike's bad hip. But like Andy, they are almost a certainty in getting a win.

But as usual, it's Mardy that I'm worried about. :scared:

Havok
10-23-2004, 09:16 PM
Compare him to the other USA singles hopefuls and he's definitely looked upon as an asset to the team compared to them. Though once on the team, he is definitely a liability, though Ginepri, Blake, Dent, Spadea (:scared: ) are all liabilities as well. The USA just needs a new bright star because with Fish and his fried brains, he might not be able to do a whole lot in his career sadly.

Deboogle!.
10-23-2004, 10:23 PM
Apparently Mike's hip is better and he might be able to avoid surgery. They're having a very nice run in Madrid this week, we'll see how they do against previous champs Knowles/Nestor. The thing with them is that they get up so much for DC it's hard to push them down and I'm hoping the same will happen to Andy. Andy was flat in Bratislava, but he also had just won the USO and couldn't come down from that in time (or the whole rest of the season, really)... this is different. Not that this will help him get a win against a much better team, but yea.

Even reading Mardy's press conference, you see that he even realizes that it's gotta be Andy and the twins that do most of the work. He knows it, I'm sure they know it and I'm sure PMac knows it too. Props to him for being realistic.

I suppoe if you look at it in the perspective that it doesn't matter who the #2 singles player is because he'll lose his match anyway, it might as well be Mardy so that the team is nice and cohesive and united and happy together. I suppose that might give Andy and the Bryans enough of a mental boost to try to win their matches.

But, pretty much it's just not gonna happen. I mean I'm glad the team is going to do whatever they can and try their hardest, and i would love for them not to get completely embarrassed, but realistically speaking I think this is even more far-fetched than what happened in the Bronx a few days ago.

Deboogle!.
10-28-2004, 03:24 PM
Wow some harsh words from this newspaper columnist..
--------------
Americans need Agassi for Davis Cup

By Leighton Ginn
The Desert Sun
October 28th, 2004

If Patrick McEnroe is to earn his keep as the U.S. Davis Cup captain, he needs to find a way to get Andre Agassi to play in the finals against Spain on Dec. 3-5 in Sevilla, Spain.

There’s no question the surface is going to be clay, which has been Kryptonite for American players Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish.

Look at Roddick’s record at the French Open, the only Grand Slam tournament on clay. Roddick has failed to get out of the second round the last three years at Roland Garros. In the three European Masters Series on clay, Roddick has a 10-7 career record.

Fish is even worse. His combined victories in the French Open, Monte Carlo, Hamburg and Rome Master Series?

One.

That’s right. One match. He has a 1-4 record -- and the only clay he’s played on this year was in Houston. That’s the American clay, not the European clay that promises to be much slower.

How can the Americans match up against French Open and former No. 1s Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya?

Spain is in its third Davis Cup final in five years, and they will be the heavy favorite.

To have a chance, the U.S. needs Agassi.

OK, Agassi lost in the first round of the French Open this year, and was dismal on clay.

Agassi, however, has had major success on the surface, winning the 1999 French Open.

He’s also been on winning U.S. Davis Cup teams and his experience is valuable.

With Agassi and Roddick, who at least has done well on American clay, the U.S. would at least have a chance.

Doubles would likely be won by Bob and Mike Bryan, who won the 2003 French Open doubles title.

Without Agassi, the U.S. has no shot, and questions about McEnroe’s leadership will arise.

With France and Spain emerging as top Davis Cup squads, it’s very likely the Americans will have to play on the road. A road match most likely will mean playing on clay.

France and Spain, two countries where players grow up playing primarily on clay, are better on the hard courts than the U.S. is on clay.

If the U.S. can’t win on clay, then it can’t win a Davis Cup title.

As a captain, McEnroe needs to get to the players about how important it is to improve on clay.

If McEnroe can’t get through to the players on the importance of playing well on clay, then he can’t lead the U.S.

Deboogle!.
11-10-2004, 01:01 AM
Spain announced their team today. PMac announces on Thursday. No surprises.
-----------

Ferrero, Moya to lead Spanish Davis Cup team

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) -- Former No. 1s and French Open champions Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya will lead Spain against the United States in next month's Davis Cup final.

Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo were also on the Spanish roster announced Tuesday, with Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco as substitutes.

It's the same group Spain used to beat the Netherlands in the quarterfinals and France in the semifinals.

U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe will announce his squad Thursday. It's expected to be the same quartet that beat Belarus in the semifinals: Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish in singles, and twins Bob and Mike Bryan in doubles.

The final is in Seville on Dec. 3-5.

Spain won the Cup in 2000. The United States has won the title a record 31 times -- but not since 1995.

Golfnduck
11-10-2004, 01:39 AM
LETS GO USA!!!

Deboogle!.
11-11-2004, 01:12 AM
I can't say I disagree with Vinny...
-----------

Spadea States Case For Davis Cup Spot


Photo By Fred Mullane By Tennis Week
11/12/2004

U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe is scheduled to announce the American Davis Cup team that will face Spain in December's Davis Cup final at a Manhattan press conference tomorrow. Vince Spadea won't be selected to the the squad and he's declared his disappointment about it.

McEnroe is expected to select the same squad that swept Sweden in the quarterfinals and beat Belarus in the semifinals — second-ranked Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan — as the team he will take to Seville to face Spain in the Davis Cup final, December 3rd-5th.

In an email to Tennis Week, Spadea, the third highest-ranked American man in the ATP Entry System, expresses his disappointment with McEnroe's decision and states his case for both his inclusion on the squad and a revision of the selection process that Spadea asserts "should be an equitable one in which members are selected based on merit. Other irrelevant and unjust off court factors, such as age or friendships, should have no bearings on team selections."

Tennis Week is attempting to contact McEnroe today for his response to Spadea's letter. If Tennis Week does not reach McEnroe today, it will request a comment at tomorrow's press conference.

The 19th-ranked Spadea — who is ranked behind second-ranked Andy Roddick and eighth-ranked Andre Agassi and ahead of recent American Davis Cup selections Mardy Fish (ranked No. 37) and Taylor Dent (ranked No. 32) — cites his superior status in the rankings, his higher win total this year (Spadea has won 40 matches this year, Dent has 32 victories and Fish has 28 wins) and the fact he has gone deeper in the draws of European red clay tournaments (Spadea reached the Rome quarterfinals this season, the 2003 Monte Carlo semifinals and the 2003 Roland Garros third round; Fish did not play any European clay court events this year due to a hip injury and fell in the second round of Rome and the opening round of Roland Garros last year; while Dent bowed in the second round of Monte Carlo and the opening round of Roland Garros this year) as irrefutable evidence for his inclusion on the team over his lower-ranked compatriots.

Essentially, Spadea is arguing that player performance should be the sole criteria in the selection process. In fact, that is the very criteria former United States Fed Cup captain Billie Jean King used when selecting the American Fed Cup team — the current rankings that reward the players who register the best results.

McEnroe might counter that since he succeeded older brother John as the U.S. Davis Cup captain he has consistently said his primary goal was to build a foundation of young American players who could grow together and form a formidable team capable of contending for the Davis Cup championship on an annual basis for years to come. The fact that both the 22-year-old Fish and 23-year-old Dent — who was probably not seriously considered for a spot on the squad that will face Spain given the fact he's a serve-and-volleyer whose game is not conducive to slow, red clay — are both considerably younger than the 30-year-old Spadea would support that point.

Clearly age is not an essential aspect of the selection process as McEnroe has conceded 34-year-old Andre Agassi would be welcomed on the team if he declared himself eligible to play. Offering the ageless Agassi a spot supports Spadea's point that results and rankings rather than age should be the decisive numbers in selecting the Davis Cup squad. But Agassi's clay-court credentials — a Roland Garros champions and three trips to the French Open final — are far superior to virtually any American man who has represented the nation in Davis Cup play.

"Having ended the year in the top 20 and ahead of other young Americans, my performance and ranking this year clearly demonstrate that my age has no bearing on my ability to perform at the highest level of our sport. Further, my record shows that age, unquestionably, should not be a factor in deciding the Davis Cup team."

Should McEnroe select Fish, he can point to the fact that Fish, while very vulnerable on clay, did score a significant clay-court win over Karol Kucera that leveled last September's tie against the Slovak Republic. Had Fish fallen to Kucera, the U.S. would have trailed 0-2 and very likely would not even be in the final this year. In that respect, if McEnroe chooses Fish he is adhering to the sports adage of sticking with the players who bring you to the final in the first place.

While Fish certainly lacks the speed and stamina that are Spadea's strengths, he owns a superior serve to Spadea and has had produced greater success in international team competition, reaching the gold-medal match at the Athens Olympic Games on hard court and beating a possible Davis Cup opponent, Juan Carlos Ferrero, along the way. In fact, Fish has winning records against two probable opponents in the Davis Cup final (Fish is 2-1 against Moya and 1-0 against Ferrero with all four matches staged on hard court), while Spadea is winless in four career meetings with Moya and Ferrero.

Additionally, Fish has won two of his three Davis Cup matches this year, he has played doubles with Roddick in the past and would be a better doubles candidate than Spadea in the event one or both of the Bryan brothers were injured and has more Davis Cup experience than Spadea.

And therein lies part of Spadea's dilemma: how can he acquire Davis Cup experience, when U.S. captains consistently opt to overlook for a place on the team? In fact, Spadea himself seems to forget the fact he suffered a 6-4, 1-6, 4-6 setback to Ferrero in his lone Davis Cup match when Spain swept the United States, 5-0, in the 2000 semifinals in Santander as he states Davis Cup competition is "missing from my record."

"When people look back on my career and see that playing Davis Cup, an incredible achievement which I have rightfully earned, is missing from my record, I want there to be no question in anyone's mind that I was available, willing and eager to play and that I legitimately and without question earned the right to play Davis Cup."

Spadea's results this season support his statement, but the selection process does not.

Ahead of other Americans in the rankings, Spadea finds himself on the sidelines again.

Vince Spadea's Letter To Patrick McEnroe (reprinted here courtesy of Vince Spadea):

Pat,
I am writing this letter to you to express my desire to represent the U.S. in the upcoming Davis Cup final. As the #19 player in the world and third highest ranked American in the world (behind only Andy Roddick and Andre Agassi), I have earned the opportunity to represent the United States against Spain.

Throughout the year, I have expressed my desire to represent my country in Davis Cup, a privilege I felt I earned earlier in the year with respect to previous Davis Cup matches. For reasons never articulated to me, and despite my solid results throughout the year, you have consistently chosen not to select me to the Davis Cup. Earlier this year, after having won an ATP tour title and reached the semifinals of the Nasdaq 100, you declined to name me to the Davis Cup team for the quarterfinal match against Sweden, as well as the semifinal match against Belarus. In bypassing me in your selection, you stated in a news paper article (which I have enclosed for your convenience) that in order for you to select me to the Davis Cup team, I would have to demonstrate significantly better results or a higher ranking than the younger Americans in contention for Davis Cup play this year.

I have done that this year, and, but for Andy Roddick, I am ranked higher than all of the other American players interested and available to play Davis Cup. On this point, I would like to highlight my record as compared to other young Americans currently in contention for the Davis Cup final (on red clay in Madrid):


2004 ATP entry ranking (as of 11/7/04): Spadea (19), Dent, (32), Fish (37)
2004 year-to-date ATP singles wins: Spadea (40), Dent (32), Fish (28)
Top finishes in ATP European red clay tour events: Spadea (2004 Italian Open quarterfinals, 2003 Monte Carlo semifinals, 2003 French Open 3rd round), Dent (2004 Monte Carlo 2nd round, 2004 French Open 1st round), Fish (2003 Italian Open 2nd round, 2003 French Open 1st round)


I hope and expect that you will honor your word, and my hard work and achievements this year, and name me to the team for the final in Spain. Further, with regards to the integrity of the process, I feel that the Davis Cup selection should be an equitable one in which members are selected based on merit. Other irrelevant and unjust off court factors, such as age or friendships, should have no bearing on the team selections. Having ended the year in the top twenty and ahead of other younger Americans, my performance and ranking this year clearly demonstrate that my age has no bearing on my ability to perform at the highest level of our sport. Further, my record shows that age, unquestionably, should not be a factor in deciding the Davis Cup team. I know that I have earned a playing position on the American team in the upcoming Davis Cup final. I hope that you will make a fair selection and give me the opportunity that I have worked so hard to earn by recognizing my professional achievements this year in a selection to the Davis Cup team.

I appreciate your time and attention to this matter.


Sincerely,
Vince

andyroxmysox12191
11-11-2004, 01:39 AM
As much as I dont wanna say it or actually want to see him there.....he should be on the team instead of Mardy..

Deboogle!.
11-11-2004, 01:55 AM
Exactly. And the fact that he had the guts to write this letter and stuff makes me feel that even more, as much as I dislike him. His clay results, while still pretty poor, really are superior to Mardy's and his consistency this year has been MUCH MUCH better than Mardy's. It really is unfair to him.

superpinkone37
11-11-2004, 02:27 AM
even though i really really dislike the guy, i do agree with what he is trying to say. he should be named to the team instead of mardy, based on results and everything. but he wont, and thats not really fair

tangerine_dream
11-11-2004, 02:35 AM
Guess who's not getting an invitation to Andy's house in Houston anytime soon? ;)

I can see what Vinny's saying but I don't like how he felt he had to go to the press and turn the whole thing into a public issue. This was his attempt to put a lot of pressure on PMac and make him think twice because now PMac is going to be on the defensive and look like the bad guy when he announces Mardy's name. Plus, Vinny's letter is going to follow them all the way to Spain and back. A Charlie Brown cloud over their heads that they really don't need.

I wonder how Mardy will react and if he'll say anything?

I have this image of Mardy spitting tacks right now. LOL.

Havok
11-11-2004, 03:12 AM
I understand where Spadea is coming from, but Vinny you suck, end of story.:) Fish has played way more DC matches these past couple of years and has sort of cemented his place on the team.

Deboogle!.
11-12-2004, 01:33 AM
Well it's now official.
--------
Roddick to lead U.S. against Spain in Davis Cup final
Thu 11 November, 2004 22:31

NEW YORK, Nov 11 (Reuters) - World number two Andy Roddick will lead the U.S. against Spain in the Davis Cup final next month.

Mardy Fish and the doubles team of Bob and Mike Bryan complete the squad for the December 3-5 tie in Seville.

"Playing against a Spanish team that includes two former world number one players and two French Open champions on a clay court before 15,000 fans is the ultimate challenge and test for our team," U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe, said in a statement.

"Nothing would be sweeter and more satisfying than to win the Davis Cup in this environment and our guys are certainly excited about the opportunity that is in front of them."

Roddick, the former world number one who cracked a record 155 mph serve in the 4-0 U.S. victory over Belarus earlier this year, will warm up for the Davis Cup by playing in next week's ATP Masters Cup.

The former U.S. Open champion has a sparkling 14-3 Davis Cup record in singles play and has not lost a set in six singles matches this year.

The United States returns to the Davis Cup final for the first time since 1997 but has not won the competition since 1995 when Pete Sampras accounted for all three points in a 3-2 upset over Russia in Moscow.

Spain won the Davis Cup in 2000 and reached the finals last year but lost to Australia in Melbourne.

Deboogle!.
11-12-2004, 01:42 AM
Roddick, Fish, Bryan Brothers Selected To U.S. Davis Cup Team


Photo By Susan Mullane By Richard Pagliaro
11/13/2004

The U.S. Davis Cup championship team enjoyed taste of Spain today. U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe hopes it was an appetizer for a Davis Cup victory his team will try to taste when it takes on host Spain on the red clay court of the Estadio Olympico in Seville, Spain, December 3rd-5th.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Americans reclaiming the Cup, the USTA brought together Hall of Fame players Tony Trabert and Vic Seixas and Ham Richardson who captured the Cup in 1954 against host Australia before a Davis Cup record crowd of 25,578 in White City at the midtown Manhattan's Spanish restaurant Solera.

While the trio of American tennis legends looked on, McEnroe set his sights on the United States' quest to capture its 32nd Davis Cup championship. As expected, the captain has selected the same cast that beat Belarus in September's semifinal — second-ranked Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan — to take on Spain.

The Spanish squad is well-suited for the slow surface with a pair of former top-ranked Roland Garros champions in Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero forming the foundation for a team that includes talented teen Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo. Spain is seeking its second Davis Cup title in its fifth appearance in the final. Spain defeated Australia 3-1 to win the Davis Cup title in 2000 as Ferrero defeated Lleyton Hewitt to clinch the country's first Davis Cup championship in history. Spain reached the Davis Cup final last year, falling 3-1 to Australia in Melbourne. That tie was played on grass, while the soft red clay that is the surface for this final should serve as a welcome mat for Spanish players.

"Playing against a Spanish team that includes two former world No. 1 players and two French Open champions on a clay court before 15,000 fans is the ultimate challenge and test for our team," McEnroe said. "Nothing would be sweeter and more satisfying than to win the Davis Cup in this environment and our guys are certainly excited about that opportunity that is in front of them."

One player who will not share the excitement is 19th-ranked Vince Spadea, who was bypassed in favor of Fish. Spadea told Tennis Week he would be willing to make the trip to Seville as an alternate, but he probably won't get the chance as McEnroe confirmed he is leading toward choosing Robby Ginepri, the second singles starter in the United States' 5-0 sweep of Austria in February's opening-round, as the alternate on the team should Ginepri's bothersome back hold up.

In an email to Tennis Week yesterday, Spadea stated his case for his inclusion on the squad and criticized the selection process that he asserts is unfair in that it permits the captain's personal preference to take priority over player performance, ranking and results. Spadea is ranked 18 spots higher than Fish, owns 12 more victories on the season and has produced better clay-court results in the past.

Prior to today's press conference, McEnroe told Tennis Week he chose Fish over Spadea primarily because he truly believes Fish gives the Americans a better chance to win than Spadea. The complete interview with McEnroe will be posted on this web site tomorrow.

"I'm not making the decision based on the fact Vince is older. The primary reason is I believe that Mardy has the best chance to win a match," McEnroe said. "I believe he's got game that can frustrate those guys. Obviously, it's clay so it's a different situation. But the key for me, in my mind, is that Mardy works his butt off these next few weeks, which obviously I'm on him about doing, so that he's in great shape. And if he's in great shape then I think he's got a good chance to win a match."

Conceding Spadea's clay-court credentials have been superior to Fish, McEnroe pointed out that the match-ups — Fish is undefeated against both Moya and Ferrero, while Spadea is winless against Moya and Ferrero — and prior Davis Cup experience favor Fish.

"Spadea's had better results than Fish on clay, but this isn't a clay-court season. We're playing one match," McEnroe said. "I'll say it again: in my mind, in my opinion, Mardy has a better chance to win a match (than Spadea). Does that mean he's necessarily a guy who's going to win more matches on clay throughout the course of a two month season? Well that's debatable. I'm asking him to try to go win one match. And if you put Vince Spadea — or anyone — in their first live match in Davis Cup in the Davis Cup final in front of 25,000 people who are going crazy — and I've been there for Roddick's first Davis Cup match, for Mardy's first Davis Cup match, for James Blake's first Davis Cup match, for Ginepri's first Davis Cup match, down two sets to love, the whole deal — that's very tough. We can't afford that in this big a match. And as I said, as solid a year as Vince has had, he hasn't done great in the majors. He hasn't had great results in Slams, which leads me to think that in five set matches, it's one thing if the guy's unbelievable in five-set matches of if the guy got to the semis of the French. Yeah, he's had better results than Mardy on clay this year. He hasn't had the results that to me make it a no-brainer that he is the obvious pick. To me, Mardy has a better chance to win a match, he's been part of the team."

McEnroe said he considered selecting Spadea, but did not believe the disparity in ranking and results between Spadea and Fish was significant enough to warrant Spadea's selection to the squad.

"I certainly considered Vince seriously," McEnroe said. "I follow all the results from Europe. Unless Vince did something extraordinary, like winning Madrid or doing something outrageous, I was pretty comfortable that I was going to stay with Mardy. He's got us here, he's won some big matches for us, he's got the experience of playing. I'm not going to put someone in there just to gain experience — especially when we're playing in the final for the Davis Cup."

In response to Spadea's call for the USTA to adopt a merit-based selection system relying strictly on rankings to reward the players who have produced the best results over the course of a season, McEnroe said such a system was "absolutely never going to happen" as he believes would limit the captain's flexibility in picking a team best-suited to specific surfaces and opponents.

"Absolutely not. It will certainly never happen as long as I'm the captain. Never," McEnroe said. "I have to pick guys who I feel are best prepared to play on particular surfaces. The morale of the team is important. Match-ups, the fact that Mardy has matched up well with these guys, on different surfaces, but I watched him play Moya at the Australian and that was pretty slow conditions. I watched him play Ferrero at the Olympics. I mean, that's not a guarantee that he's going to win, but that helps. In other words if we had this system where as Vince says we went strictly by the rankings, I mean that's just not going to happen. What if someone's hurt?"

In support of his stance, McEnroe said rankings have never been the sole criteria in his selection process and suggested experience in Davis Cup play is vital when playing a final on foreign soil.

"When I put Ginepri in he wasn't ranked the highest at that point, when I put Blake in over Todd Martin in North Carolina, he wasn't ranked higher. So you have to have some flexibility," McEnroe said. "Mardy got us here, he's won some big matches fo us, he's got the experience of playing. I'm not going to put someone in there just to gain experience— especially when we're playing in the final for the Davis Cup. "

McEnroe said he offered a spot on the squad to Andre Agassi, but Agassi, who has said repeatedly he has no desire to play Davis Cup again, declined.

"Would it count if Spadea were No. 5 in the world? Then of course, that's different," said McEnroe. "The disparity is not like saying it's Andre Agassi who has won the French Open and eight majors.If it was Agassi then you make an exception — and this is in no way meant to disparage Vince Spadea — because he's Andre Agassi. There's only one Andre Agassi. He's won eight Grand Slams, he's one of the greatest players ever, he's Andre Agassi."

The complete Patrick McEnroe interview will be posted on this web site tomorrow.

superpinkone37
11-12-2004, 02:23 AM
well no surprise there. and i felt sorry for vinny for, oh, about three and a half seconds and now im over it, lol. even though mardy is as big of a choker as they come, he does do pretty well in davis cup. not that any of this matters anyways, theyre still gonna lose, im pretty confident in that

tangerine_dream
11-12-2004, 02:41 AM
The fact that PMac even has to waste his time and energy "getting after" Mardy to get his ass into shape and start practicing on clay really irks me. :( Mardy :banghead:

And I agree with Pat in that the morale/cohesion of the team is also important to their success. Vinny has nothing to offer the team in that respect. Sorry Vinny. Go back to rapping to yourself. :o

missroddickfan
11-12-2004, 04:35 PM
And I agree with Pat in that the morale/cohesion of the team is also important to their success.

that's important 4 sure u'r right but it'll be very hard to win...... i hope it but i don't think really the'll win

tangerine_dream
11-12-2004, 06:00 PM
Well, it appears that the popular consensus is that PMac should've given Mardy's place to Vinny.

Reader Response To Vince Spadea Story
Dear Tennis Week,

Being a captain of an USTA team, I can support Vince Spadea claim to be included in the U.S. squad for the final on the grounds that the best players should represent the country in the most important match of the season. His ranking and especially results on clay this year are better than of other candidates. His game style predisposes him to be more successful on clay than either Mardy Fish or Taylor Dent. I think he deserves the spot on the team and in the worst case, he should play a test match on clay vs. the other guys. It is what we do on our USTA team and it seems to be the most objective method of agreeing on the roster for the crucial matches.

I don't think the finals is the right place to "breed" young and prospective players and/or "solidify" the team for future editions of the Cup.

With best regards,
Jacek Wojtowicz
New York
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Tennis Week:

I am truly disappointed that Vince Spadea was snubbed again by McEnroe. What does he have to do to be considered? Obviously, merit doesn't count. Vince has played his heart out week in, week out and has superior results to Mardy Fish. He has absolutely earned the right to represent his country. How can one not admire his gutsy comeback from oblivion to a top twenty contender?

Alice Young

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I am in agreement with PMac that, as the captain, he has the right to pick the Davis Cup squad and selection not be determined by pure rankings. Match-ups have to be considered, just like a baseball manager selects the starting pitcher in the World Series based on lefty pitcher versus right-handed hitters, etc. I feel for Spadea because he has come a long way and had some good results since his awful losing streak. But in the end, it's the captain responsibility to pick the right team. That is the biggest part of the job.

Mary Durkin
Los Angeles
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Dear Tennis Week,

I am outraged by the blatant discrimination in the selection of the Davis Cup team. As in any team sports, the ultimate objective is assemble the best team possible in order to win NOW, not "in the years to come" or 20 years from now. Since when does potential rank higher than actual achievement? According to Pat McEnroe's twisted logic, we can just do away with things like the Olympic Trials and just pick players who show the most potential while bypassing players who are playing significantly better. The way to build a strong*the Davis Cup team is to protect its integrity and show young players that if you have proven yourself on the court, your hard work will be recognized by your country. Pat McEnroe has taken*away the honor*of representing one's country by*corrupting the selection process.

I would also like to respond to the letter written by Mr. Dave Coleman from Prairie Village, Kansas. I would like to ask Mr. Coleman since when does speaking out against a flawed system make you a whiner. Mr. Coleman should also get his facts straight — Vincent Spadea offered himself up twice already as an alternate/ practice partner, once in Spain and once in Moscow, even when often the practice partner is a junior or a significantly lower ranked player — and certainly never a player ranked higher than the real members on the team! Finally to ask Vincent Spadea to apologize for making something that even Mr. Coleman himself believes to be wrong public, is yet another kind of twisted logic that no one would buy, unless you are Pat McEnroe.

May Chan
San Gabriel, CA
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I am outraged by Dave Coleman's false accusations in his letter to Tennis Week. Coleman, get your facts straight before you criticize people. Coleman's allegation that Spadea has not offered himself up as a practice partner on the team could not be any further from the truth. The facts are that Vincent's agents, at Vincent's request, have already made it very clear to Pat McEnroe that, with the team concept in mind, Vincent was willing to go to Spain for this Davis Cup match in any capacity — without a spot on the four man team — as an alternate. Spadea has offered up his services to McEnroe to be a team player as a fifth member of the U.S. Davis Cup squad that goes to Seville with the idea of putting forth the best U.S. team possible. McEnroe has declined to take Vincent up on his offer and declined to offer Vincent the opportunity to be the fifth man on the team and travel to Spain as a team member ready to play in case the team needs him! McEnroe has made it clear with his actions that he does not want Vincent, in any capacity, in Seville.

Spadea has always made himself available for Davis Cup play in the past, as an alternate and as a practice partner. In 1995, Spadea, after 10 consecutive weeks on the road, flew half way across the world from Buenos Aires Argentina to Moscow to be a practice partner for the Davis Cup final. He also, at John McEnroe's request, served as an alternate on the Davis Cup team in the semifinal match in 2000 in Spain. Vincent has qualified to play the World Team Cup event twice, and both times he happily represented his country, including captaining the World Team Cup this past year. Why should Spadea say nothing and allow McEnroe to once again, deny him an opportunity that he has earned and to deny the U.S. the opportunity to have their best players available to play in Seville. The Spaniards have named their top ranked six players to the squad and are bringing their best possible to team to the table. Why is McEnroe not? McEnroe's decision is unfair and he is the one that owes Spadea an apology.

Mohammad Hayat
Los Angeles, CA
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PMac stated when he assumed the leadership of the Davis Cup team that he wanted to assemble a TEAM who would be in position to represent the USA as a TEAM for a number of years; he has a good start in doing that.* To bring in a "new/old" member at this time would, in my opinion, upset any team chemistry that has been achieved to date.* Andy Roddick invited the team to his home in Austin prior to the tie in Charleston, and it seemed they played very well together and had the "team concept" down.* And, yes I was in Delray Beach and again in Charleston and these guys are a TEAM!!* In my opinion PMac did the right thing!!* So I say GOOD LUCK IN SPAIN GUYS!!!!

Marianne Jenks
Jamestown, OH
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Dear Tennis Week:
*
Vince Spadea makes some very strong arguments for his place on the team.

I believe he is missing*the point by asserting *that "age" and "friendship"* are the dominant criteria a coach uses to make his judgments on team roster decisions.*

As a high school tennis coach I understand there are often times where you have to make tough decisions about deserving players for the best interest of the team.* I would not find it hard to believe if Patrick McEnroe does not see how strong a case Vince Spadea's results and credentials are for the team.* But in the end the Captain must do what is best for the team as a whole and sometimes this will leave individuals with strong credentials disappointed.

From reading the letter Vince wrote*I sense that he feels this is a political decision. From a coaches standpoint, here are some areas I think about when evaluating team roster decisions that Vince Spadea may not be considering:

1. Doubles versatility in case of injury
2. Recent Davis Cup participation and match experience
3. Team continuity and cohesiveness
4. * Gut feeling
*
Sincerely,
*
Brian Lutz
TennisTip.com
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As a coach, tennis professional, and teacher, i find this to be a typically childish resolution. Although Spadea is completely in line with regards to being the next Davis cup member, he went about this wrong. However we don't know what his motives were to have Tennis Week publish his letter. Spadea and McEnroe may have had issues with each other, which maybe the reason as to why he acted in that fashion. If that is the case, Spadea should talk it over with the President of the USTA. Rather than have the tennis fans become discouraged with this situation.

Katie Kennedy
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On Spadea and Davis Cup:

This is the first real chance at us Yanks getting back into the title hunt when we are talking about Davis Cup. Though Spadea could have said it behind closed doors, I think it is important that we as American Tennis Fans know that our squad had the best shot at winning the Cup. If we win it regardless, I do not want to forget Spadea (because that seems to happen in sports i.e. Tom Brady and Drew Bledsoe). Spadea has done his duty as a solid tennis player in the world, even more solid than a Mardy Fish who ALWAYS gets picked to the semifinals of Slams like U.S. Open and Wimbledon, and he is also more solid then Taylor "I had the bronze in my grasp, and I got tired" Dent. Andy Roddick, is the best player in the States and also the leader of this team. Maybe we should throw away the stats and the other stuff, and see at the end if this is a team chemistry issue. Spadea, on his merits should be on the team, but on his quality as a teammate, I think the truth is still a mystery.

P.S. Roger Federer is the greatest player of all time
Anand Madhavan
Omaha, NE
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Hi,
I followed Spadea's successes in the last few years and I'm always amazed how come he is not recognized as one of the best US players.

The way Patrick is running his Davis Cup team is based on favoritism.* I suggest that he invites Spadea to the Davis Cup team and let him practice with them, then he will decide day by day who he will pick for the final games.

Arie Ghershony
Maryland
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I read the article on Vince Spadea being left off the Davis Cup team and I am amazed. This is America — a place where hard work and success are rewarded — or should be. Patrick McEnroe should be ashamed of himself. Or maybe he already is, being that he was a fifth rate tennis player who would never hold the jobs he holds if his brother wasn't a superstar.

I want the best players representing my country. Spadea has clearly made his case on the court for being a member of the team. He deserves the spot. End of story.

That we are not sending a player who is in the top 20 in the world is wrong. Even if Fish accidentally wins a match on clay (which he won't), it still is wrong. Spadea earned the spot. But then again, Patrick Mac doesn't understand the concept of earning anything.

Dennis Dugan
Pacific Palisades, California
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Dear Tennis Week,
*
Vince Spadea is dead-on with the content of his letter to Patrick McEnroe.* Assuming that Andre Agassi doesn't want to play in the Davis Cup finals, Spadea has earned his spot on the US Davis Cup team.* Does McEnroe really think that Mardy Fish has a fighting chance over Moya, Ferrero, Nadal or Robredo?* It will be enough to have Andy Roddick win a match against Spain.* Spadea would have had a much better chance at winning than Fish.

However, it was incredibly selfish for Spadea to release the letter to Tennis Week for publication.* What's that going to solve?* Now McEnroe will never put you on the Davis Cup team and the rest of the tennis community will think you're a baby.* Spadea needs to grow up and move on.* McEnroe's the captain and he selects the team.* If the team he selects gets killed then his job as captain is in jeopardy.* But for Spadea to make his letter to McEnroe public is just in bad taste.* Now the world won't second guess McEnroe decision to bypass Spadea for Fish.

What Spadea should have done is taken the high road and offer himself up as a Davis Cup practice partner.* It would have been much harder for McEnroe to ignore not picking Spadea if he shows that he is a team player and can perform on the court.* In the future, Spadea should offer to represent the USA at the Hopman Cup, ATP World Team Championship, 2005's Davis Cup team in any capacity and offer a public apology to McEnroe for releasing his letter to Tennis Week.

No one likes a whiner — even if he's right.

Dave Coleman
Prairie Village, KS

Golfnduck
11-12-2004, 06:30 PM
Cousin Vinny is very scary :eek: :bolt: I don't think their team chemistry would be as good with him on the team.

Deboogle!.
11-12-2004, 11:27 PM
Here's the full PMac interview, for those who care
=======

The Tennis Week Interview: Patrick McEnroe

By Richard Pagliaro
11/14/2004

Patrick McEnroe and Vince Spadea never faced each other as professionals, but they've engaged in an enlightening rally in recent days. Instead of exchanging shots, the pair have traded thoughts regarding the criteria U.S Davis Cup captain McEnroe used in selection the United States squad that will compete for its 32nd Davis Cup championship when it faces host Spain in the Cup final on the red clay of Seville, December 3rd-5th.

At a midtown Manhattan press conference yesterday, McEnroe announced he has selected the same cast that stopped Sweden in April's quarterfinals and beat Belarus in September's semifinal — second-ranked Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan — to take on the Spanish squad that features a pair of former top-ranked Roland Garros champions in Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero forming the foundation for a team that includes talented teen Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo.

The third-highest ranked American man — 19th-ranked Vince Spadea — was not selected to the team and though Spadea told Tennis Week he would be willing to make the trip to Spain as an alternate, it appears that spot may go to Robby Ginepri.

If the ultimate barometer of success in professional sports is winning and losing then you can't find much fault with McEnroe's performance as captain this season. The captain has guided the United States to its first Davis Cup final since 1997 and created a cohesive team of young, talented players who have made the quest to reclaim the Cup the U.S. last won in 1995 their primary pursuit. It's a team so tight the players grew up together — Roddick and Fish were housemates in high school — and so in tune they often finish each other's sentences.

The final represents the United States' first tie on foreign soil this season and faced with the prospect of playing before thousands of vocal, partisan fans, McEnroe believes the support of teammates who have shared prior Davis Cup tests together is vital and believes he would be doing a disservice to the four players who have carried the U.S. to the Cup final if he were to drop one player in favor of Spadea now.

"Obviously, the chemistry of our team is very good and it's been successful to this point," McEnroe said. "To turn around and change at this point makes no sense in my mind. You're certainly entitled to disagree and he's certainly entitled to state his case."

Spadea counters that each Davis Cup tie is, in effect, a new tournament and the very fact that the Davis Cup format requires countries to select a squad before each tie compels captains to pick the best players for that tie.

"As for the argument that another legitimate factor in the selection process should be sticking with the team that got you to the final, that contention holds no merit whatsoever," Spadea told Tennis Week. "If that were the way the process was meant to work, then team selections would occur only once a year on January 1. We all know that is not the structure of the selection process, and that in fact, selections are made before each Davis Cup match. The only logical explanation for that structure is to allow countries to pick the best players at the time the selections are made."

Despite their Davis Cup differences, McEnroe and Spadea share a common history. Both are sons of attorneys, both spent formative in large cities, both were highly successful junior players, both based their games on penetrating two-handed backhands and both are opinionated, intelligent individuals.

"My best years were late so I have a real understanding of what he's been able to do, particularly with not having all the natural game," McEnroe said of Spadea. "He's a workhorse and so I have a lot of respect for what he's done."

An arm-chair analyst might conclude McEnroe sees some of himself in Spadea. And as a man who grew up under the same roof as one of the game's most gifted players he recognizes the power of potential and simply feels more confident going with a player who has yet to fully tap his talent than a player who may well have maximized his own talent.

"I believe Mardy has the best chance to win the match, based on his ability, based on his experience playing Davis Cup, based on the fact he's played well in the Olympics, he's played well in some big, big matches for us," McEnroe said."I still believe Mardy's got a tremendous upside as far as his career goes. And I think he's got a lot of game. I don't think he's lived up to his potential yet."

The 30-year-old Spadea feels he's trapped in a Catch-22: he has been bypassed for players with more Davis Cup experience, yet Spadea himself cannot gain Davis Cup experience if he is not selected to the team in the first place.

Spadea has invested an immense amount of time, effort and sweat into clawing his way back from the brink of oblivion when he suffered an ATP Tour record 21 straight losses and fell so far off the radar he was reduced to playing challengers to this year when he captured his first career tournament title and produced the best year of his career. Understandably, Spadea believes he has paid his dues, kept his end of the bargain and has rightfully earned his right to represent his country. To be rewarded for his efforts with another Davis Cup rejection is a bit like spending a year working on commission only to be presented with a promissory note and watch as a colleague gains the promotion he's worked for.

There's no question Fish has the ability to compete with just about anyone on the planet not named Federer (then again, Fish was the only man to take a set of Federer at the 2003 Wimbledon), the question is he fit, fast and focused enough to win against two former top-ranked French Open champions?

McEnroe believes he is and has compelling statistics to support his case. Fish is undefeated against probable Spanish singles starters Moya and Ferrero, while Spadea is winless against the pair. Additionally, Fish's victory over Karol Kucera in the 2003 World Group Players on red clay essentially saved the U.S. from falling out of the World Group. McEnroe believes without Fish's contributions, the United States wouldn't be in the final in the first place.

"I believe Mardy has the best chance to win the match, based on his ability, based on his experience playing Davis Cup, based on the fact he's played well in the Olympics, he's played well in some big, big matches for us. I still believe Mardy's got a tremendous upside as far as his career goes. And I think he's got a lot of game. I don't think he's lived up to his potential yet."

The implication is with Fish the best is yet to come and with Spadea this season may just be as good as it's ever going to get.

Spadea states sports isn't about speculation it's about results. And just as results are a direct representation of wins and losses, Spadea asserts that is a selection process, which is not based on rankings and results is inherently unfair and potentially discriminatory. At the core of Spadea's contention is how can a country field its best team if the captain does not select the best players according to the rankings?

"The USTA's goal in selecting a team for Davis Cup should be to assemble the best players available and field the strongest team possible," Spadea told Tennis Week. "That is never going to happen as long as the selection process involves the consideration of irrelevant and unjust factors like age or friendships. As for age, if it were a legitimate basis upon which to measure a player's ability then logically all of the players younger than me, including Fish and Dent, would be ranked ahead of me. They are not. In fact, at No. 19 in the world, there are few that are. You cannot argue with the rankings. You can ignore them, and offer other illegitimate reasons for selecting lower ranked players, but that does not change the fact that the rankings objectively, without regard to bias or personal preference, determine who the best players are."

A primary part of the Davis Cup captain's job is to use his judgment to choose the players who will give his team the best chance to win. McEnroe believes taking that responsibility out of the captain's hands and placing it on the hard drive of the computer rankings would not only be restrictive, it would be senseless. Theoretically, such a system could limit a captain's ability to adjust his team based on variables such as surface, match-ups with opposing players and potential parings in doubles. It could also leave a nation vulnerable should one of its top players sustain an injury. For instance, if injuries sidelined the current corps of American starters next year and prevented them from defending ranking points, McEnroe might be forced to field a team of Kevin Kim, Alex Bogomolov, Jr., Glenn Weiner and Paul Goldstein — all currently ranked between 102-135 — rather than Roddick, Fish and the Bryan brothers.

Ask McEnroe what he thinks of adopting a ranking-based selection system and he looks at you like you've just asked permission to perform root canal surgery on him with a rusty pair of pliers.

"No, that's absolutely never going to happen," McEnroe said. "Absolutely not. It will certainly never happen as long as I'm the captain."

The possibility of Spadea playing Davis Cup during McEnroe's tenure is not nearly as definitive.

Asked if he was concerned his public stance could diminish his prospects of being picked to play Davis Cup for the future, Spadea said he's willing to take that personal risk to take a stand on principle.

"I am not concerned about how articulating my thoughts on Pat McEnroe's selection process will affect my future chances of being named to the team because this is an issue of principle for me," Spadea told Tennis Week. "It is unfortunate, on a personal level, that in this instance the bias in his process is adversely affecting me. But the bigger picture is that it will continue to hurt other players, the overall strength of the team, and the integrity of the sport in the United States if the Davis Cup captain continues to base his selections on all factors other than performance and ranking. It is patently wrong to discriminate based on age in any professional environment. Further, to allow off court factors and personal preferences, rather than players' rankings and records, to dictate the Davis Cup selections is wrong. I know it and anyone who understands sports knows it. I feel compelled to speak out against the blatant unfairness of the selection process and I would never regret calling it as I, and most others, see it."

Not surprisingly, McEnroe sees it differently.

Prior to officially announcing the Davis Cup team McEnroe sat down with Tennis Week at a table on the second floor of the Spanish restaurant, Solera, in midtown Manhattan. With members of the 1954 U.S. Davis Cup championship squad — Hall of Famers Tony Trabert and Vic Seixas and Ham Richardson, the self-described "very happy third member of a two-man team, who hit with McEnroe when he was a child — seated nearby, McEnroe discussed his response to Spadea's statements, the reasons behind his selections and the United States' chances of upsetting the favored Spanish squad in next month's final.


Tennis Week: I want to ask you about your reaction to Vince Spadea's letter. It seems the core of his argument is that performance typically dictates results in sports: if the Knicks outscore the 76ers, the Knicks win. If Roddick wins more sets than Ferrero in the U.S. Open final, then Roddick wins the U.S. Open title. Spadea is saying: "With that in mind, I'm ranked ahead of these guys, I've got more wins this year, so why am I not on the team? Isn't that the way sports work?"

Patrick McEnroe: Well he has more match wins and he also has 10 more losses than Mardy. First of all, let me say I have tremendous respect for what Spadea has done. I know from getting to my highest ranking when I was in my late 20s that it's very tough to do that.

Tennis Week: Your career as a player was similar to his: you both had your best years late in your career.

Patrick McEnroe: Right. My best years were late so I have a real understanding of what he's been able to do, particularly with not having all the natural game. He's a workhorse and so I have a lot of respect for what he's done. First of all, I believe Mardy has the best chance to win the match, based on his ability, based on his experience playing Davis Cup, based on the fact he's played well in the Olympics, he's played well in some big, big matches for us. I still believe Mardy's got a tremendous upside as far as his career goes. And I think he's got a lot of game. I don't think he's lived up to his potential yet. In saying that, that's not really the reason why I'm picking him in this match. Mardy won probably, at least in my tenure as captain, the biggest single match we've had, which was winning on clay (Fish scored a 4-6, 7-5, 7-5, 6-1 victory over Karol Kucera in the World Group Playoff tie in September of 2003) away, in front of a hostile crowd, down 1-0. Roddick had just lost.

Tennis Week: And if Fish loses that match, you're pretty much done?

Patrick McEnroe: If he loses that match then you've got the Bryans, who are obviously favored, but you know they hadn't played a match yet in Davis Cup. So you know, down 0-2 with the crowd (against us), we're in a tight spot. So Mardy stepped up and won a big match, he's also had some poor matches, but he did it on clay. I made a decision, Richard, four years ago, to go with the younger group we had. The only way that I could justify to myself putting in someone that hasn't been part of the team, they'd have to be so far clearly better (than the current players)...

Tennis Week: You mean if it was Agassi...

Patrick McEnroe: If it was Agassi then you make an exception — and this is in no way meant to disparage Vince Spadea — because he's Andre Agassi. There's only one Andre Agassi. He's won eight Grand Slams, he's one of the greatest players ever, he's Andre Agassi.

Tennis Week: I don't think Spadea — or just about anyone else for that matter —would have a problem with Agassi on the team.

Patrick McEnroe: Well I'm not making the decision based on the fact Vince is older. The primary reason is I believe that Mardy has the best chance to win a match. I believe he's got a game that can frustrate those guys. Obviously, it's clay so it's a different situation. But the key for me, in my mind, is that Mardy works his butt off these next few weeks, which obviously I'm on him about doing, so that he's in great shape. And I think if he's in great shape, then I think he's got a good chance to win a match.

Tennis Week: How do you respond to people who say: "Fish has played only one match on clay this year?" Spadea had better clay-court results this year and last year?

Patrick McEnroe: Well, Fish was injured this year during the clay court season. Obviously, he's had better results on fast courts. Spadea's had better results on hard courts than on clay this year. He's had better results than Fish on clay, but this isn't a clay-court season. We're playing one match. I'll say it again: in my mind, in my opinion, Mardy has a better chance to win a match (than Spadea). Does that mean that he's necessarily a guy who's going to win more matches (than Spadea) on clay throughout the course of a two month season? Well that's debatable. I'm asking him to try to go win one match. And if you put Vince Spadea — or anyone — in their first live match in Davis Cup in the Davis Cup final in front of 25,000 people who are going crazy — and I've been there for Roddick's first Davis Cup match, for Mardy's first Davis Cup match, for James Blake's first Davis Cup match, for Ginepri's first Davis Cup match, down two sets to love, the whole deal — that's very tough. We can't afford that in this big a match. And as I said, as solid a year as Vince has had, he hasn't done great in the majors. He hasn't had great results in Slams, which leads me to think that in five-set matches, it's one thing if the guy's unbelievable in five-set matches or if the guy got to the semis of the French. Yeah, he's had better results than Mardy on clay this year. He hasn't had the results that to me make it a no-brainer that he is the obvious pick. To me, Mardy has a better chance to win a match, he's been part of the team. If everything were exactly equal between the two guys, yeah, that counts. Team chemistry counts, with this group especially because they get along so well, they push each other, they prod each other, they get on each other's case and that's all good. That's the thing that I tried to start building four years ago, so to think they when we make it to the finals that I'm going to go against that would not be fair to the goal that I set and it wouldn't be fair to the team.

Tennis Week: You mean in the sense that you're asking Fish for his loyalty and commitment to Davis Cup and then when it comes time to play for the Cup if you said: "thanks for helping, but see you when we get back..." I mean, I can see it both ways: if you bail out on Fish at this point, after what he's contributed, after he's been there for you, understandably he's not going to feel that's fair.

Patrick McEnroe: Right. Mardy was there for us in (the first-round tie against Austria in) Connecticut when he didn't play and he knew he wasn't going to play. I believe in Mardy. I believe in what Mardy is capable of doing.

Tennis Week: So you're saying it's more pro-Fish than anti-Spadea?

Patrick McEnroe: Oh, completely, clearly, no question.

Tennis Week: Well then how do you respond to Spadea's situation? Vince is saying: "I've done what they've asked, I've produced the results and rankings and now I'm in a Catch-22 because experience counts, but how can I get experience when nobody picks me?" You know, how can I gain Davis Cup experience if no one picks me to play Davis Cup?

Patrick McEnroe: I wasn't the captain when Vince Spadea was out on the tour for 10 years. If you get to be ranked high enough you're going to be chosen to play early in your career. It just so happens that now he's ranked higher than those other guys, but throughout the year that hasn't always been the case. As I said, I have tremendous respect for what he's done. But you gotta prove it more than just having a good couple months. And he's had a good year — I'm not taking anything away from him. To say that he wants it on his record to play Davis Cup, well first of all, he's played Davis Cup, number one. He was on the team and you know my goal as the captain is not to fulfill someone's personal dream. You know, I would have wanted to play singles in Davis Cup too, many players would. I mean as much as I respect Vince for his desire and for wanting to play and for doing what he's done, when I came on as captain, I think he was ranked 200 in the world. OK. So it wasn't like I brushed off Vince Spadea for four years. I mean, he wasn't even in the mix, as far as even a possibility, really, until this year. And I believe in the young guys we have. I believe in working with them. I believe in sticking with them. And I think they need to be pushed and prodded and I'm going to keep doing that.

Tennis Week: What do you think about Spadea's point that we should revise the selection process. Let's just make it cut and dried, merit based, let's just go right to the rankings and go with the highest-ranked players first. Do you think that will ever happen?

Patrick McEnroe: No, that's absolutely never going to happen. Absolutely not. It will certainly never happen as long as I'm the captain.

Tennis Week: Why not?

Patrick McEnroe: Because I have to pick guys who I feel are best prepared to play on particular surfaces. The morale of the team is important. Match-ups, the fact that Mardy has matched up well with these guys, on different surfaces, but I watched him play Moya at the Australian and that was pretty slow conditions. I watched him play Ferrero at the Olympics. I mean, that's not a guarantee that he's going to win, but that helps. So in other words if we had this system where as Vince says we went strictly by the rankings, I mean that's just not going to happen. What if someone's hurt? When I put Ginepri in he wasn't ranked the highest at that point; when I put Blake in over Todd Martin in North Carolina, he wasn't ranked higher than him. So you have to have some flexibility. I completely disagree with going in that direction.

Tennis Week: How seriously did you consider Vince for a place on the team? Did you consider him at all for this tie? I know you contacted Agassi so when he declined what was the thought process that led you to this team?

Patrick McEnroe: I certainly considered Vince seriously. I certainly follow all the results from Europe and thankfully I have the Tennis Channel so I watch a lot of matches. I watched his match against Nadal, I watched Mardy beat Ancic and Andy lose to Mirnyi so I see a lot of tennis. Obviously, the case of Agassi is the exception because he's Agassi. Without having him available for this match, unless Vince did something extraordinary, like winning Madrid or doing something outrageous, I was pretty comfortable that I was going to stay with Mardy. He's got us here, he's won some big matches for us, he's got the experience of playing. You can't just say "Vince is in the Catch-22 because he wasn't picked before." I'm not going to put someone in there just to give him experience — especially when we're playing in the final for the Davis Cup. I mean, I'm going to throw him out there in his first live match when we're playing for the final? I have always thought — and this was as a brother, as a player, as a practice player, as a commentator, whatever role I've been associated with in Davis Cup — I believe that team chemistry really matters and really counts. Not just for one match, but for the whole program and for what we're trying to do. And that was really one of my goals: was trying to turn around the mind-set of the program, to say every year we are going to be into it. We're not just going to hope "God, we hope we get Andre, we hope we get Roddick to play..."; we want to really have a cohesive unit of guys and that's why I've had Mardy there as a practice partner, that's why Ginepri's been there, that's why Blake came to South Carolina (for the semifinal victory over Belarus) when he was injured. All those things, I think, count, when you step out on the court to play. Would it count if Spadea were five in the world? Then of course, that's different.

Tennis Week: So you're saying the disparity (between Spadea and Fish) is not great enough?

Patrick McEnroe: Exactly. The disparity is not like saying it's Andre Agassi who has won the French Open and eight majors. I'll say it again without any negativity toward Vince Spadea: you make that exception for Andre Agassi — because he's Andre Agassi.

Tennis Week: Are you concerned you're leaving yourself short if there's an injury to Roddick or Fish and one of the Bryan brothers has to go out there and play singles against a former French Open champion like Moya or Ferrero on clay? Is that a concern?

Patrick McEnroe: Sure I'm concerned about it. I mean, I may bring someone as the fifth guy just to have there.

Tennis Week: What is the exact rule on the fifth guy's eligibility to play?

Patrick McEnroe: Once you make the call on Thursday, before you do the draw ceremony, that's it. Unless, like let's say we did the draw at noon and Roddick went out at 2 and twisted his ankle, then I believe you have a doctor right there and you could substitute at that point. There is a window, right after the draw, I believe.

Tennis Week: Well why not bring Spadea as the fifth guy then?

Patrick McEnroe: Well I may bring someone, but I'm not sure I'm going to bring him.

Tennis Week: Has anything Vince has said in stating his belief impact his potential future in being selected as part of the team?

Patrick McEnroe: What's going to impact it more is how he does.

Tennis Week: His results?

Patrick McEnroe: His results. Certainly next year is a new year and a new potential for a new team. But to say I'm going to throw him into the final...Am I discounting you just because you wrote some letter? I'm glad to see he's interested, I'm glad he's interested. Hey, the guy's passionate about it, he wants to play, and that's great.

Tennis Week: Has he come to you and say "Patrick, let's talk?"

Patrick McEnroe: No. I've left him a few messages and I've never heard back from him. Maybe he doesn't want to talk to me, you know whatever, but that's fine.

Tennis Week: Do you have a good relationship with Vince overall?

Patrick McEnroe: I have a good relationship with him. I mean, I don't know him as well as I know the other guys. Obviously, I don't spend as much time with him. He came to the Olympics and had a good time, I thought, there. I tried to be there and help him when he asked. I mean, he's 30 years old so he's more set in his ways. It's like when Todd Martin played Davis Cup, I'm not going to tell Todd Martin a million things. OK. He's been out there for 10 years. So it's a little bit different. I've known Robby, Mardy and Andy since they were 17, 18 years old. So I think I've been more mentor-like and been someone who's there for him or given them opinions whether they like it or not and have been there for them. With Vince, it's not like that. Certainly, if he came and asked me, I'd give him my opinion, which I've done before. But no, I don't keep as much in touch with him as I do the other guys.

Tennis Week: But the actual selections, is that a product of the friendships you have with Roddick, Fish or any of the guys or even the friendships the players have with themselves? You're saying that the friendships have nothing to do with it?

Patrick McEnroe: It absolutely has nothing do with why I'm picking the team. I'm picking the team because I feel that Mardy has the best chance to win a match. And all the other stuff that Vince points out, the friendships, etc., you know that's not it. If Vince Spadea beat Mardy Fish, 6-1, 6-1, 6-1, then you throw friendship out the window. Obviously, the chemistry of our team is very good and it's been successful to this point. To turn around and change at this point makes no sense in my mind. You're certainly entitled to disagree and he's certainly entitled to state his case.

Tennis Week: I can see it both ways. If I was Fish and you came to me and said: "Sorry Mardy, I'm leaving you off the team for the final" I'd be upset. I would not be happy. At the same time if I was Spadea and I had the superior ranking and results and felt I'd earned the right to play and was not given it, yeah I'd definitely be upset and I can completely understand being pissed.

Patrick McEnroe: Look, just judging by our conversation it's a tough call. It's a tough call. There's no perfect answer. There's no easy answer and I've got to take all that into account.

Tennis Week: But getting back to your earlier comment about taking a fifth guy, who will that be? Who is it?

Patrick McEnroe: It could be Ginepri because he's been on the team before. He's been a guy who would be a good practice guy. I can do do that (pick the fifth guy) anytime I want. Basically once you name the four guys that day (the day of the draw) you're stuck, you're locked. So in other words, if Roddick goes out and twists his ankle the first game of the match, that's it, you're in trouble. That's the nature of the beast. That's more of a (risk of having a) doubles team as opposed to singles guys playing doubles. Obviously for us its worked, having a doubles team. They (the Bryan twins) are undefeated and haven't lost a set. They bring a very strong commitment to the team, they bring an energy, they bring an enthusiasm, they take pressure off the singles guys because they know these guys are going to be there on Saturday. They gear up for it, they want to be there and they win. And I think it takes some of the pressure off the singles guys. Andy knows going out there: "I don't necessarily have to win two matches", which he's been able to do, certainly at home. Would Spadea play well over there? Yeah, I think he could play well. I do, I think he can play well. But at the same time, I feel Mardy's got a bigger game, he's got more weapons and he's someone I feel I can work with him over the course of a match.

Tennis Week: Let's talk about the tie overall. On paper, Spain is an immense favorite with the two former French Open champions Moya and Ferrero. In fact, even if they went with Robredo and Nadal, I think they'd be favored. But at the same time, Ferrero has had an injury-plagued season, his confidence is not what it was. Moya has complained of shoulder problems and hasn't played recently. They seem like they might be vulnerable — or maybe I'm just reading too much into it with the injuries. What do you think?

Patrick McEnroe: Clearly, we're the underdogs. I don't think they're as dominant as they've been on clay. Clearly, Ferrero is struggling, he's trying out this new racquet. Moya's been out.

Tennis Week: What have you heard about their health?

Patrick McEnroe: I've heard basically what you've heard. I mean even Nadal pulled out and had some shoulder troubles in Madrid. I saw that match with Spadea in Madrid and he looked to be struggling toward the end. Robredo seems to be pretty fit. I think we can see any one of those four guys in singles. I don't think it's by any means a given that it's gonna be Ferrero and Moya playing all the singles matches. And by the way, they've also got (lefthanders Fernando) Verdasco and (Feliciano) Lopez, who they can also pull in. I'm not really looking too much as to who they're going to have. For us, the main thing is being in great shape and to be physically ready to go the distance. And if we do that, we can beat those guys. We're the under dog, but we're not playing Ferrero or Moya two weeks after they won the French. They're not quite at their peak point, but in saying that they're still gonna be practicing their butts off now and they're going to be as prepared as they can possibly be. But confidence means a lot and in a situation like that having had wins and success is important. I think it will be good for Andy to play Houston and Mardy played a bunch of tournaments and the Bryans have had a pretty good last two months, so I feel pretty good about them. My concern is that we're physically ready to go. I think the mental stuff — dealing with the crowd and trying not to get over excited — I think we can handle that. We want to play our game: we want to hit some big serves and be able to end points quickly, but we also want to be able to play 15 to 20 shot rallies here and there.

Tennis Week: Do you think Mardy is physically fit enough and has the stamina to play those type of demanding rallies in a best-of-five set match?

Patrick McEnroe: Well that's a huge question mark. That's a big part of what I've been working on with him and continuing to push him physically and to upgrade his fitness. Look, if he's not in great shape, he's gonna struggle. But if he's in great shape, he's got a chance. So I've told him that. I've talked to (fitness guru and noted trainer) Pat Etcheberry and I've talked to his people about it.

Tennis Week: How does Mardy feel? Does he feel he's in good enough shape to do it?

Patrick McEnroe: He feels he's working hard now. He's trying to lay a good base. He's working on his cardio, doing some running, doing some hills. He's got a few more weeks and I think that's enough. He's a good athlete. He's a natural athlete. He played five sets at the Olympics and he was fine, physically. He lost the match, but he was fine physically. What I'm saying is that I don't feel he has too far to go. I just feel he needs that push.

Tennis Week: I agree with everything you've said about Fish's athleticism, his weapons, his ability. The thing that concerns me is he occasionally seems to lose focus by getting cranky and caught up over a questionable call. Remember what happened in Australia after he beat Moya when he's up two sets to love against Ferreira? He just mentally loses it and only won five games the rest of the match. At those times you feel like yelling at him: "Dude, you've got game, you've got the ability. Just play the game and don't get caught up in the calls and lose it." Can you explain it? What's that all about?

Patrick McEnroe: First of all, let me say if you know you're in physically great shape, that makes a difference. You don't get as cranky. That happened to me a little bit. You look at a great player like Lendl and look at how getting into great shape changed him mentally. Lendl was known as being mentally fragile until he worked so hard physically that he was able to overcome it. Agassi used to flail at balls sometimes before he got into great shape. So I've worked on that a lot with Mardy in Charleston. As far as: "Listen, you're going to get some bad calls. The guy's going to hit a lucky shot. Forget about it." I remember in (the Davis Cup semifinals) Charleston at one point in the fourth set with Mirnyi he got a shaky call or he double faulted twice and then sort of got one bad call. All of a sudden, in his mind, that's why he lost serve; forgetting the fact he double faulted twice and missed an easy shot. So he got up and was doing his usual bickering with the umpire. So I said: "Mardy, listen when you get up (from the changeover) you can say one more thing to the umpire and that's it, it's over." Because you have to understand his mind frame, you can't just turn it off. So he got up, he made a little comment to the umpire, he turned and sort of smiled at me and that was it. Then he went on and played a hell of a fourth set. So get the last word and then just forget it.

Tennis Week: So are you saying if his body is in better shape then it's going to strengthen his mind?

Patrick McEnroe: No question. Absolutely no question. There's no doubt in my mind that will play a big part. Is it going to solve all his problems? No, but it's going to help a lot in his attitude, in his ability to move his feet every point. Because if you're a little concerned about your fitness, you think: "I'll save a little energy" then you get a little lazy, a little lackadaisical, a little irritated. All those things connect in some way. So the good thing about Mardy is that I feel there's still a big upside there. And I feel that he's had, not a great year, a little inconsistent. So I think it all does matter. I believe in Mardy. I believe in his potential.

Tennis Week: This could be a big moment for him. It could really help his confidence in his career, but I thought the Olympics would do that for him — that his performance there would propel him the rest of the season.

Patrick McEnroe: The thing with Mardy is that he needs to be constantly kicked in the butt.

Tennis Week: You've got big feet so you're the right guy for the job.

Patrick McEnroe: I do it in a loving way. I believe in him. Sometimes, I piss him off. I think he knows I'm trying to help him. That doesn't mean he always agrees with what I'm saying, but that's OK. I think he knows I have his best interests at stake.

Tennis Week: You look at Fish, Dent and Ginepri and I don't believe they've had the type of years that they wanted to have or that people expected. Why is that? What's it going to take for them to pick it up and reach their potential?

Patrick McEnroe: I could go on forever about each of them. I'll say in a general comment they each need to look hard at being more professional in whatever that means — whether it's a mental thing, whether it's Taylor Dent getting into better shape, whether it's Mardy in a combination of physical and mental — you know whatever it is for them it was not easy, but it was relatively routine to get from No. 200 to No. 50 to No. 30. To get to 20 from 30 and from 20 to 15 and to 10 is a lot harder. It takes a lot of dedication and incredible amount of hard work.

Tennis Week: Do you think they each have it within to get there?

Patrick McEnroe: Yes, I do.

Tennis Week: Do you think the desire is there?

Patrick McEnroe: I think it's in there somewhere. Is it obvious and right there on the surface? No, but I do think it's there and they all have it in different ways. But they've gotta realize if they want to maximize their potential, then they've got to do everything possible to get there. Because everybody else is. Everybody else around the world is killing themselves to try to get there.

Golfnduck
11-12-2004, 11:29 PM
Thanks for the article Deb!!!

superpinkone37
11-13-2004, 02:05 AM
thanks for posting it Deb :) :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-15-2004, 11:32 PM
Roddick and Moya set for Davis Cup showdown

HOUSTON, United States (AFP) - Second-ranked Andy Roddick is confident the United States can win the Davis Cup final for the first time since 1995, even though he faces a hostile crowd and tough clay surface next month in Spain.

"It's going to be crazy. We expect that. The good thing is we know what we're getting into when we go over there," Roddick said.


"It's not going to be a surprise. We know it's going to be tough.


"But we go in with the mindset that we just have to try our best to deal with it. We're excited. We feel with the group of guys we've been building for three or four years, to have a chance at the title now, it's very exciting."


Roddick and Spain's Carlos Moya, both here this week for the season-ending ATP Masters Cup, will be crucial to their homeland's chances of capturing the trophy in matches December 3-5 at Seville.


"We know we're the favourites but we have to take advantage of that," Moya said.


"It's going to be really exciting. I'm thinking about it already. I've even been dreaming about that moment. So it's going to be great."


Spain features former French Open (news - web sites) champions Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero plus Tommy Robredo and teen prodigy Rafael Nadal. Roddick is joined by Olympic runner-up Mardy Fish and former doubles world number ones Mike and Bob Bryan.


"There's no pressure no matter what," Roddick said. "We're in a Davis Cup final in a foreign country on not our favorite surface. I look at it as we're the underdogs. I don't know if anybody is expecting a lot from us."


The Americans are 4-2 against Spain, winning their most recent meeting here in a 2002 quarter-final on grass. Spain, which lost to Australia in last year's final at Melbourne, won their only Cup in 2000 at Barcelona over Australia.


Clay courts will give the Spaniards an edge, denying Roddick's power serve game the same edge it would enjoy on hardcourts.


"It's no secret that's not our favourite surface. But that's what we have to deal with. We go in knowing that," Roddick said. "There are no surprises. We're going to try to win three matches. You just have to simplify your thinking.


"So far in my career I've had a lot of success against those guys. But I haven't played them on clay that much."


Moya is counting on 23,000 screaming supporters to provide a lift as well.


"When Spain is playing at home, we always have an advantage," he said.


"It's going to be very interesting because they have a strong team also. It's going to be very tight. The people are amazing. They are going to support us a lot."


"We've won 11 straight ties at home so I think we are the favourite. But the US team is playing very well. They have a strong team, very balanced. They have two good singles, very good doubles. It's not going to be easy."

Roddick said the US capturing the Cup would rival a Grand Slam triumph.

"It's tough to compare the two. They're both huge," he said. "If we're able to bring the Davis Cup back, then it will be something special for all of us."

Golfnduck
11-15-2004, 11:34 PM
Thanks for the article Deb. Hopefully the boys have been preparing.

superpinkone37
11-16-2004, 12:30 AM
thanks for the article Deb :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-19-2004, 12:18 AM
well well well :eek:
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McEnroe Selects Spadea To Davis Cup Squad
By Richard Pagliaro
11/19/2004

Vince Spadea stated his case for a place on the United States Davis Cup team in a letter to U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe last week and now McEnroe has responded to Spadea's request. The U.S. Davis Cup captain announced today Spadea has been selected to the fifth spot on the American squad that will face host Spain in the Davis Cup final set for December 3rd-5th on the red clay of Seville.


McEnroe, who told Tennis Week in an interview last Thursday he was leaning toward picking 61st-ranked Robby Ginepri for the fifth position, offered Spadea the spot in a voicemail left on Spadea's answering machine. The 19th-ranked Spadea answered the call and could be called upon again to play singles in Spain. McEnroe said Spadea has a shot to earn the second singles spot with a strong week of practice.

"As I spoke with you last week, I spoke to Vince a couple of times and spoke to Ginepri to see where he was and at the end of the day I decided that having Vince there was the option to go with," said McEnroe, in a conference call from Houston where he is working as ESPN's tennis analyst for the Tennis Masters Cup. "I had a good couple of long conversations with him and got him on the page that I feel he needs to be on to come over there and play well."

The decision completes yet another tennis transformation for the strong-willed Spadea: in the space of a single week Spadea has gone from Davis Cup outcast to a potential primary player on the team who could win the second singles spot and potentially play one or two matches.

Spadea said he was eager to accept a position on the team after McEnroe assured him he would be more than a practice partner.

"He assured me that I would be going as a fifth player,a member of the team and not a practice partner (there will be two juniors as practice partners)," Spadea told Tennis Week today. "He said that he still plans on starting Mardy (Fish), but that if something should occur before the first match (injury, etc.) I need to be ready to play. The prospect of having any chance to play Davis Cup and be part of the U.S. team is exciting for me. Thus, I've accepted Pat's offer and I look forward to going to Spain to represent my country."

While McEnroe said he is still leaning toward playing 37th-ranked Mardy Fish as the second singles starter, he made it clear Spadea will have a shot to earn that spot.

"I'll tell you exactly what I told Vince," McEnroe told Tennis Week. "I'm leaning toward Mardy playing, but that's not a lock. I told Vince to come over there with the idea that he can play. And last year in Slovakia I was leaning toward James Blake playing the singles match and Mardy ended up playing. That will be my decision that will be the decision that will come the day or two before the match. As I said, Mardy has the experience so I would lean toward him, but Vince is coming over, in my mind, as a guy who could potentially play."

The decision may well have surprised Spadea himself. In an email interview with Tennis Week on Tuesday, Spadea said he had not spoken to McEnroe since the captain voiced his views on the selection process in an interview with Tennis Week, though he acknowledged McEnroe had left him a voice mail.

It marks Spadea's second appearance on the U.S. Davis Cup team. Four years ago, U.S. captain John McEnroe selected Spadea to the team after both Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras pulled out only a few weeks before the tie was set to start citing injuries. Spadea played one match, falling in three sets to Juan Carlos Ferrero in Spain's 5-0 semifinal sweep of the United States on the red clay of Santander, Spain.

Asked how the the four members of the team who led the U.S. to a quarterfinal conquest of Sweden and a semifinal sweep of Belarus — second-ranked Andy Roddick, Fish and twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan — responded to Spadea's selection, McEnroe said the entire team supported the decision. Team leader Roddick requested Spadea's phone number to welcome him to the squad.

"They feel very, very good about it," McEnroe said. "I had a couple of very good conversations with the guys. Andy is extremely excited about it. In fact the first thing he said to me was: 'Can you get me Vince's number? I want to call him and tell him how excited we are to have him come.' So that to me sums up Andy Roddick and he's sort of taking on a leadership role on the team and reaching out to Vince. If he's called him or not, I don't know because obviously he's pretty busy down here."

Initially bypassed for a place on the team, Spadea wrote McEnroe a letter stating his case for inclusion on the Davis Cup squad. Spadea told Tennis Week he believed he had earned a spot on the squad based on his higher ranking (Spadea is ranked 19th, Fish is ranked 38th), greater number of victories (Spadea has won 40 matches, Fish has 28 wins) and his superior clay-court results.

One of McEnroe's close friends — his ESPN broadcast partner Cliff Drysdale — believes neither Fish nor Spadea will win a match against Spain, but still thinks the United States could upset the heavily-favored Spanish squad led by former French Open champions Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero.

"I don't expect Mardy Fish to be able to win either one of his second matches or indeed Vince if he gets to play," Drysdale said. "The way to win it is simple. Roddick has to win both of his singles matches and the Bryan brothers have got to win the doubles. All of those things are within reach. Ferrero has not had a good year. I think my money would definitely be on Roddick to beat him. Against Moya, it's more problematic. But I would make that a 50-50 call between the two, not withstanding that it's on clay. I don't care about Spain because Roddick has been there before with the audience against him. So to me, that's not a factor. This guy is hugely single-minded and focused when he plays, regardless of where he plays."

The 30-year-old Spadea was a member of the U.S. Olympic team that included Roddick, silver medallist Fish and the Bryan brothers. McEnroe captained that team and is confident Spadea will be ready for his Davis Cup role.

The pair may never be pen-pals, but McEnroe is pleased they are now on the same page.

"Vince came to the Olympics with us, we're looking forward to having him," McEnroe said. "He was very positive to me when we spoke. He said, 'I'm in the gym and I'm getting myself ready. Whatever you need me there to do — be ready to play or be a practice guy — (I'll do). So I was extremely happy with his attitude after the sort of thing we went through last week. To me, that's completely behind us. I'm very happy to have him here as part of the team and with the attitude he has. That's all important and that counts toward what we're trying to do."

Nishy
11-19-2004, 12:28 AM
Thanks the article Deb.
Even there is few chance to US win DC, it is interesting to have Spaeda as team member.

superpinkone37
11-19-2004, 12:57 AM
though i am surprised, it would be really sad if pmac picked robby, who has done basically nothing this year, over spadea. spadea probably wont end up playing a match, but it sounds like he is happy just to be going i guess.

thanks for the article Deb :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-19-2004, 12:59 AM
I love that Andy asked for his # to welcome him to the team. That is classy :)

Deboogle!.
11-19-2004, 01:09 AM
Roddick thinks ahead to Seville date

Brad Gilbert, the coach of Andy Roddick, has been tinkering with the American's backhand and volley in Houston. At the Masters Cup, the world number two has been particularly aggressive and it's this factor Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe, hopes send the U.S. to victory over Spain next month.

"I think he can do that on clay. That will make it tough for guys to return his serve," McEnroe said.

"I would like to see him mix it up a little more on clay. That's something we will work on."

Roddick will spearhead a team of Mardy Fish, the Athens Olympic silver medallist, and brothers Bob and Mike Bryan , who'll contest the doubles rubber in the 3-5 December final at Seville.

Even Lleyton Hewitt, who led Australia to victory over Spain last year, believes Roddick is vital but tagged Fish as the weakest link.

"I think Fish is going to find it extremely hard playing against those guys on clay over there. I don't think he has got the experience on clay to do it," Hewitt commented at the Masters Cup.

"I don't think there's probably anyone else that does apart from Andre Agassi that the Americans could put in."

But McEnroe has confidence in his number two singles player.

"I think he's got the kind of game that can translate onto different surfaces," McEnroe said.

"He has got the capability of playing well on the big occasions."

Hewitt said the Bryans must also come through if the Americans are to claim the Cup for the first time since 1995.

"Roddick holds the key. Obviously the doubles I think is a must win for America - absolute must," Hewitt said.

"Still it's hard to see. They've just got so much depth. [ Carlos] Moya - the way he's playing at the moment, Andy is going to have his hands full on a slow clay court against him.

"Whether [Juan Carlos] Ferrero is playing his best tennis or not, he plays awesome in Davis Cup."

Eurosport - James Buddell - 18/11/2004

Deboogle!.
11-19-2004, 06:05 PM
I hope Andy is ready for this :awww:
=======

Hewitt: U.S. Davis Cup Hopes Rest On Roddick's Shoulders

By Tennis Week
11/19/2004

Tennis isn't a contact sport, but Lleyton Hewitt believes the United States is on a collision course with a pair of clay-court champions and a boisterous crowd when it travels to Seville for the Davis Cup final against host Spain, December 3rd-5th.


The third-ranked Hewitt, who was the primary player on the Australian Davis Cup squad that succumbed to Spain in the 2000 Davis Cup final in Barcelona, said the United States' Davis Cup hopes rest on Andy Roddick's shoulders.

While Hewitt holds Roddick in high regard, he suggests it will be a tough test for Roddick to sweep successive singles victories over Spain's pair of former French Open champions Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero on clay.

"Roddick holds the key. Obviously the doubles I think is a must win for America — absolute must," Hewitt said. "Still it's hard to see. They've just got so much depth. Moya — the way he's playing at the moment, Andy is going to have his hands full on a slow clay court against him. Whether Ferrero is playing his best tennis or not, he plays awesome in Davis Cup."

The man who helped lead Australia to the 2003 Davis Cup championship with a victory over Spain on grass in last December's final, said the second singles spot presents a significant problem for the United States. Hewitt believes Mardy Fish, whose lone clay-court match this season was a loss to Alex Bogomolov, Jr., will be overmatched on the slow surface against the Spanish Armada if Fish gets the nod over Vince Spadea to fill the second singles spot.

"I think Fish is going to find it extremely hard playing against those guys on clay over there. I don't think he has got the experience on clay to do it," Hewitt said. "I don't think there's probably anyone else that does apart from (Andre) Agassi that the Americans could put in."

. U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe concedes clay is not exactly conducive to Fish's attacking game, but believes the Olympic silver medallist's all-court skills can translate to clay.

"Mardy's got a lot of talent. He's got a lot of game. He's a versatile player," McEnroe said. "The thing I've always pushed with him and been on his case about is working hard and getting physically stronger because I think that's something that is a place where he can improve."

The captain is convinced Fish's past success against Moya and Ferrero is indicative of his ability to compete with the pair on clay. The 37th-ranked Fish, who celebrates his 23rd birthday the week after the final, has beaten Moya in two of three matches, with all three encounters staged on hard court, and edged Ferrero, 4-6, 7-6, 6-4, in their lone meeting at the Athens Olympic Games where the 31st-ranked Spaniard served for the match.

"I feel like game-wise, he's got a tremendous game. He's got a great serve. He's a natural player," McEnroe said of Fish. "I think as he gets stronger and fitter, he's got the kind of game that basically he can dictate the play on any surface. He hasn't played much on clay this year, but he's a got that played a lot on clay when he was younger. He grew up in Florida. But clearly, I'm not going to sit here and say it's his best surface. It's not. He's a good fast court player. I think he's got the type of game that can translate well to different surfaces."

The United States won't need a translator to comprehend the Spanish crowd. Hewitt heard the wrath of Spanish fans throughout his matches during the 2000 final in Barcelona. Prior to the final, Spain's Alex Corretja called Hewitt’s on-court behavior as “strange and uneducated” and claimed few players on tour liked Hewitt. Corretja’s critical comments days before the start of the Barcelona final were viewed as gamesmanship by some members of the Australian squad who believed Corretja was trying to incite the Spanish crowd against Hewitt during the tie. The Spanish fans jeered Hewitt throughout his matches and cheered his errors in that tie. Hewitt defeated Albert Costa in the first match to give Australia a 1-0 lead, but was beaten by Juan Carlos Ferrero in the reverse singles match that gave Spain its first Davis Cup championship in history. Australian Davis Cup captain John Newcombe called the crowd’s behavior the “worst” he had ever witnessed in Davis Cup play. Hewitt believes Roddick is tough enough to handle the crowd, but suggested the former No. 1 should be ready to receive verbal abuse.

"It was probably the toughest place I've ever played tennis in," Hewitt said. "There's no doubt you have got to be mentally tough out there. You're going to have absolutely nobody going for you and you're going to cop a lot (verbal abuse) out there. I think Andy is the kind of guy that will handle the situation pretty well. He might even thrive on it a little bit like I did."

McEnroe is well aware that victory is the only way to silence the Spanish crowd.

"They've won something like 11 straight matches at home," McEnroe said. "They're very deep. They love playing on clay. The conditions are obviously going to be extremely slow. That's what they're doing to try to blunt our game. We understand what we're up against. I mean, the fans there are extremely passionate to put it mildly. When you're talking about well over 20,000 people for a tennis match, that's right near record territory for a tennis match. So it's going to be crazy. Without having experienced it, we have an idea of what it's going to be like. The key for us is going to be to keep our heads down and not try to let the crowd influence the way we play."

smucav
11-22-2004, 12:52 AM
McEnroe named Davis Cup Captain for two more years (http://www.tennisnews.com/exclusive.php?pID=2449)

Agassi does right thing (http://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/tennis/sfl-brickten21nov21,0,2135369.column?coll=sfla-sports-tennis)

Carito_90
11-22-2004, 12:58 AM
Oh shut up Lleyton :o

Iheartandy&roger
11-22-2004, 07:31 AM
Go Andy Go! good luck on Dec.3!! kick some Spanish ass to the bulls and they'll take of them from there. :)

Deboogle!.
11-24-2004, 05:46 PM
Spain Gears up for Biggest Final Since 1954
The stage is set for one of the most spectacular Davis Cup finals in modern times. The converted corner of a huge stadium in Seville will attract upwards of 22,000 people when Patrick McEnroe’s young but eager team take the court to do battle with Spain in the culmination of the 2004 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas on December 3-5.

No matter that Spain will start clear favourites in front of their own wildly partisan fans on their preferred surface, clay. In Davis Cup you can take nothing for granted and bookmakers frequently get taken to the cleaners. Look at the results between France and Australia in recent years. Down Under? More like upside down. In 1999 Australia beat the French on an indoor clay court in Nice and, if that wasn’t a big enough surprise, the French then proceeded to beat the Australians in 2001 on specially laid grass at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne. The only conclusion to be drawn is that, when the Cup is on the line, logic goes out the window.

So, even without Andre Agassi who has admitted that he had talked to McEnroe about the possibility of joining the squad, it would be foolish to write off a team as talented and determined as the Americans. When asked about his decision not to play, Agassi said, “To be 34 years old and to be out there two and a half hours, to be stronger than your opponent, it’s not an easy thing to do. It takes a lot from me and I just don’t believe I have that kind of energy to give.”

Energy will not be in short supply from either side. Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero, presuming they are picked for the singles by Spanish captain Jordi Arrese, will have the edge in experience against Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish but the doubles, which, as ever, could prove crucial, will set Spanish hearts a flutter if Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal are thrown in against the Bryan twins, Bob and Mike. Youth will have its fling and anything can happen.

“Maybe it will be the greatest atmosphere we’ve ever played in,” admitted Bob Bryan. “They’re going to have the crowd on their side but it’s going to be fun for us to try and climb up the hill and beat a great team in front of a huge crowd.”

And if it comes down to experience as a team, Mike Bryan is quick to point out one undeniable fact. “We’ve been playing together 26 years,” he smiles.

The Bryans have also proved their clay court pedigree by winning the French Open doubles title last year so they will not be intimidated by the surface. Nor, on past evidence, by the partisan atmosphere which will be stoked for all its worth by a crowd that promises to be the biggest for a Davis Cup final since Lew Hoad and Ken Rosewall packed them into Sydney’s overstuffed White City Stadium in 1954 to see Tony Trabert and Vic Seixas snatch the Cup back from Australia’s teenage sensations. With people swaying precariously at the top of the bleechers, it was estimated that 28,000 spectators watched that final although no one was really sure. Not only will the Estadio Olympico de la Cartuja be safer, it will also have a temporary roof in case it really does rain in Spain.

Spain’s main concern will focus on the form of Ferrero who has suffered a wretched year, plagued by illness, injury and, not surprisingly, a sharp dip in confidence. Even when fully fit, Ferrero has not found it easy to produce his best form in Davis Cup, for although he was instrumental in helping Spain win the Cup for the first time against Australia in Barcelona four years ago, Juan Carlos suffered a surprise straight set loss to Agustin Caleri when Spain narrowly beat Argentina in Malaga last year. Ferrero pulled out of the ATP Masters Series in Paris after an early round loss in Madrid last month so that he could concentrate his energies on getting fit for the final and will be desperate to redeem a dreadful year with a triumphant flourish.

The Americans feel the same way. “None of us have won a Grand Slam title this year so we really want to compensate for that and come up with something special at the end,” said Roddick. “Davis Cup is just so special that this is going to be a great occasion whatever happens but the difference between winning and losing will be pretty huge. To win the Cup for the States with this young team we have would be just awesome.”

After losing to Australia in last year’s final in Melbourne, a second Davis Cup triumph in five years for Spain would cement their acknowledged position as the premier tennis nation of the moment quite apart from setting off a night of celebration in Seville.

Daviscup.com will as usual bring you all the action from Seville, starting from Monday with the first in a series of reports and previews. We will have news of the draw on Thursday, plus live scoring, photos and match reports once play gets underway on Friday.

For the first time Daviscup.com will be carrying set-by-set audio updates on the action during the Final.

Fumus
11-24-2004, 07:36 PM
I hope they play Vince over Mardy. Vince has done well on clay and could frustrate one of those guys into a loss, it's doubtful but atleast he has chance Mardy has none.

Golfnduck
11-24-2004, 09:17 PM
I can say one positive for cousin Vinny, even though it will probably hurt me ;). He doesn't choke like Mardy does. Mardy's problem is all up in his head.

J. Corwin
11-24-2004, 10:40 PM
I want Vinny to play the #2 singles position too...Mardy has done relatively nothing this year apart from Halle and Athens (I think...). Yea you can say that Mardy has better chemistry with the rest and has more experience, but Vinny comes off as more of a ruthless fighter on court. ;) :confused:

Havok
11-24-2004, 10:46 PM
San Jose and the event right after Mardy played great as well, but yes that's about it. :sad:

liptea
11-24-2004, 11:52 PM
I want Vinny to play the #2 singles position too...Mardy has done relatively nothing this year apart from Halle and Athens (I think...). Yea you can say that Mardy has better chemistry with the rest and has more experience, but Vinny comes off as more of a ruthless fighter on court. ;) :confused:

Mardy is also far better eye candy than Vince. ;) :inlove:

A lot of Davis Cup is chemistry. If Vince doesn't feel at home with the guys or feels like the others want Mardy instead of him, then he'll play in discomfort. But Mardy feels comfortable with the guys, happy and honored to be chosen, and has helped lead them to the finals. He does deserve it just as much as Vince.

Ah, it's a catch-22 situation.

Deboogle!.
11-25-2004, 12:30 AM
Mardy is also far better eye candy than Vince. ;) :inlove:


Well, yes ;)

A lot of Davis Cup is chemistry. If Vince doesn't feel at home with the guys or feels like the others want Mardy instead of him, then he'll play in discomfort. But Mardy feels comfortable with the guys, happy and honored to be chosen, and has helped lead them to the finals. He does deserve it just as much as Vince.

Ah, it's a catch-22 situation.

Absolutely... I think what PMac did by saying "OK vince you can come and if you play Mardy into oblivion then I'll just have to pick you to play I guess, but otherwise I'm sticking with team chemistry" - I think that's probably the best thing he could've done. I also get the feeling there's not much love lost between Vince and the "young guys" - but I thought it was really nice of Andy to get Vinny's number from PMac to welcome him to the team. I think Andy, Mardy, and the Bryans are all open to whoever will play best and give them the best chance at winning a match. Oh well, I just hope they're not embarrassed. Like last year, everyone was expecting Spain to get laughed off the grass courts but they put up a nice fight, even though they lost. That's all I'd like to see our boys do next weekend.

liptea
11-25-2004, 07:06 AM
Well, yes ;)



A lot of players are better eye candy than Vince, but Mardy especially is very hot. :inlove:

Deboogle!.
11-25-2004, 04:02 PM
A lot of players are better eye candy than Vince, but Mardy especially is very hot. :inlove:

"a lot"??? hmmmm.... no, I think ALL players are better eye candy than Vince. Ok he might get a run for his money from Stepanek:p

Anyway, no pressure on Andy or anything... oh but Jim as DC Captain????? me like-y!
---------
Roddick Must Win Both his Singles Rubbers, says Courier

Andy Roddick will need to win both of his singles rubbers if the United States are to beat Spain in Seville. That is the view of Jim Courier, a man who knows what it takes to hit the victorious stroke in a Davis Cup by BNP Paribas final.

Courier, who defeated Jakob Hlasek to give the United States victory over Switzerland in the 1992 final, believes his country can win, but that it will not be easy.

“America has an extremely difficult task ahead of them in playing the final in Seville,” said Courier, who spent much of 1992 as the world’s No.1 player.

“The team that Spain will throw against us will be very comprehensive. There is no question, on the clay, that they are a superior team on paper. Andy Roddick is going to have to rise to the occasion. I believe that he needs to win both of his singles matches to stand a chance.”

The American also pointed to the strength of the United States doubles partnership between brothers Bob and Mike Bryan, and expects a point to come their way from that rubber.

“In the doubles we are the favourites, but that is no gimme either,” said Courier.

“In every other rubber we are the underdogs. It’s a great challenge, and I think all athletes like to have a great challenge in front of them. I think all of our players will rise to the occasion.

Some of Courier’s finest moments came in the Davis Cup. As well as his exploits in the 1992 final, he was also part of the victorious team that beat Russia in 1995.

He is perhaps best remembered, in Davis Cup terms, for his performances against Great Britain five years ago.

Facing Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski at the peak of their powers on a fast, indoor court in Birmingham, England, Courier wasn’t expected to stand a chance. With typical guts, determination and plenty of skill to go with it, the American defeated Henman 76(2) 26 76(3) 67(10) 75 in the first rubber, and then sealed the tie for his country by beating Rusedski 8-6 in the fifth set of the decider. It was one of the most extraordinary accomplishments seen in recent years.

Upon retirement, Courier spent a couple of years as his country’s coach, supporting current captain Patrick McEnroe.

The job of captain is also one that he aspires to..

“It’s pretty widely known that I would like to throw my name into the hat whenever Patrick McEnroe’s reign in America as Davis Cup captain comes to an end,” said Courier.

That won't be anytime before the end of 2006, after the USTA announced recemtly that it was extending McEnroe's contract until then.

“The Davis Cup is something that I have loved to participate in for many years. I have had some success as a player and would love to have some success as a captain.”

The American is not alone in that aspiration. These days he competes with many of his greatest rivals on the Delta Tour of Champions, and when he arrives in London for The Masters Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall next week, he will face Thomas Muster and Mats Wilander, who both currently captain their nations’ teams.

“It’s a natural evolution for players of our calibre who have played at that level and really enjoyed the fruits of Davis Cup and been in the battle fields,” he said.

“It’s another way back into it and I would love to be part of that.”

Havok
11-25-2004, 04:35 PM
Jim is a good candidate, he was a much better player than PMac so he knows a whole lot more about what it really takes to be good in tennis, especially on the dirt.

star
11-25-2004, 04:52 PM
Jim or Todd.

:)

I would like Todd to coach Andy. Todd has talked very eloquently about the emotional challenges he faced on the court and how a lot of tennis is about managing emotions. I think Andy could learn from Todd. And Todd is a guy with a two handed backhand (pretty sure that is right) who could volley.

Deboogle!.
11-25-2004, 05:08 PM
Well, Todd is coaching Mardy now...

superpinkone37
11-25-2004, 05:34 PM
Well, Todd is coaching Mardy now...

is that official? i think Todd would be a great coach for Mardy, if that is indeed true

Deboogle!.
11-25-2004, 05:42 PM
I think it is. It's now been mentioned in tennis-x that Todd and another former player will coach Mardy next year (something Campbell). Tennis-x is kooky but they usually have their inside info right.

andyroxmysox12191
11-25-2004, 05:45 PM
really? he's actually coaching Mardy now? :banana: that's awesome

J. Corwin
11-26-2004, 11:20 AM
Well currently Jim is the "DC coach"...the unofficial position. ;) They gave it to him so he could be, in a way, part of it. I hope he becomes the captain too. :)

Mowgli
11-26-2004, 12:12 PM
I can't wait for the DC final! US will kick Spain's ass!
Andy will win his matches cos he's not that bad on clay! Esp. now that Ferrero and Carlos are out of form and Aresse won't change them, USA have a bg chance!
*keeps fingers crossed for the little duck* !

star
11-26-2004, 01:50 PM
Well, Todd is coaching Mardy now...

Yes, I know.

But, that doesn't stop me from wanting him to coach Andy. I somehow think that Todd might get fed up with that job. On the other hand, maybe he can transfer some of his values to Mardy. That would be very good for Mardy.

Natasc
11-26-2004, 02:19 PM
Hello GUYS,

Somebody know when Andy will play?

I konow that the Davis start in 12/03, but when Andy will play?

Thanks :kiss: :worship:

Fumus
11-26-2004, 02:30 PM
1- Vinny - Wins on clay + Consistancy = Not going to start because Pmac is stupid
2- Mardy- No wins on clay + Choker = Going start because we want to keep the team together.

See it's all very logical.

Deboogle!.
11-26-2004, 04:28 PM
Natasc, Andy will play on Friday... not sure if he'll play first or second yet but yeah he should play Juan Carlos on Friday.

Natasc
11-26-2004, 10:45 PM
Natasc, Andy will play on Friday... not sure if he'll play first or second yet but yeah he should play Juan Carlos on Friday.

THANKS :kiss: :worship:

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 07:35 PM
Well, Andy's there :)

American tennis player Andy Roddick stretches during his training in Seville, Spain, Nov. 27, 2004. The United States will play Spain in this year's Davis Cup final in Seville which will be held between Dec. 3 and Dec. 5. The United States will be trying to capture it's first title since Pete Sampras led the team to the 1995 championship.

http://images.sportsline.com/u/ap/photos/JJ805112714_1024x768.jpg

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 07:54 PM
ummmmmmm :confused: keep your friends close but your enemies closer???

American tennis player Andy Roddick, left, during his training with Spanish tennis player Carlos Moya in Seville, Spain, Saturday Nov. 27, 2004. The United States will play Spain in this year's Davis Cup final in Seville from Dec. 3 to Dec.5. The United States will be trying to capture it's first title since Pete Sampras led the team to the 1995 championship.

http://images.sportsline.com/u/ap/photos/JJ806112714_1024x768.jpg

Tytta!.
11-27-2004, 08:41 PM
:wavey: Hey guys!! Here I am Deb ;)
:hearts: the pic of Andy and Carlos!!

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 08:42 PM
Wow your 4th post :rolleyes:

:p:p

Tytta!.
11-27-2004, 08:45 PM
LOL yeah... but I'll try to post more ;) :angel:

star
11-27-2004, 09:42 PM
Ok. That photo is making me blind. The resolution is crap.

There's another one at yahoo too of Andy stretching his leg at the net.

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 09:45 PM
:scratch: they're both posted... is your computer not showing all the posts or something? :p

Jennay
11-27-2004, 09:46 PM
He's really enjoying the nice red clay :lol:

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 09:47 PM
He's a guy, he's capable of falling in love with it in 5 days :haha:

Jennay
11-27-2004, 09:48 PM
He's a guy, he's capable of falling in love with it in 5 days :haha:
:bigcry:

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 09:48 PM
too bad you're not on MSN... I'm deathing right now :p :rolls:

Jennay
11-27-2004, 09:51 PM
I am on MSN :rolleyes:

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 09:52 PM
:retard: you're offline on my list :o

Jennay
11-27-2004, 09:53 PM
You're offline on my list as well..

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 10:00 PM
well that was uber-:retard: :smash:

superpinkone37
11-27-2004, 10:34 PM
He's a guy, he's capable of falling in love with it in 5 days :haha:

:haha: :haha: :haha:

well at least he is there....but practicing with carlos? uhhh okay
thanks for posting the pics Deb :)

Chloe le Bopper
11-27-2004, 10:48 PM
1- Vinny - Wins on clay + Consistancy = Not going to start because Pmac is stupid
2- Mardy- No wins on clay + Choker = Going start because we want to keep the team together.

See it's all very logical.
Don't forget about Pat initially wanting to bring Robby "I once beat Jon Van Lottum on clay" Ginepri to the tie over Spadea :p

(I came here looking for DC news, if yer wondering :p)

Deboogle!.
11-27-2004, 11:29 PM
but practicing with carlos?

Well typically I would say.... wow he's practicing with Carlos on clay? GREAT!!! But it seems odd that they'd be practicing with each other when they will most likely have to play each otherand their teams are directly competing against each other. Just seems a little odd. I mean there's certainly no one better on the US team to practice with (duh) - the only alternative I could think of would be to have Andy play both twins at the same time to he can have to deal with every ball getting hit back to him :lol:

Tytta!.
11-28-2004, 12:03 AM
:lol: Deb! I like the idea ;)

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 12:10 AM
OMG You posted again! are you feeling ok????????? *holds hand to Renata's forehead*

superpinkone37
11-28-2004, 12:11 AM
Well typically I would say.... wow he's practicing with Carlos on clay? GREAT!!! But it seems odd that they'd be practicing with each other when they will most likely have to play each otherand their teams are directly competing against each other. Just seems a little odd. I mean there's certainly no one better on the US team to practice with (duh) - the only alternative I could think of would be to have Andy play both twins at the same time to he can have to deal with every ball getting hit back to him :lol:

yeah normally it would be great for andy to be hitting with someone who is actually good on clay. but uh, theyre gonna be playing each other in less than a week....um yeah.

:lol: LoL at the idea to play both twins at the same time :haha:

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 12:14 AM
Maybe Carlos agreed to it b/c he knew he wouldn't play Andy unless Sunday is a live day and he's so confident it's not going to happen? :angel: :lol:

Tytta!.
11-28-2004, 12:15 AM
OMG You posted again! are you feeling ok????????? *holds hand to Renata's forehead*
:angel: :wavey: :devil:

andyroxmysox12191
11-28-2004, 12:23 AM
RENATA!!!! :eek: you're actually posting :eek:.... wow...:rolleyes: :D :banana:
thanks for the pics deb :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 12:43 AM
So maybe this explains it a lil...... not sure what happened tho....
---------
Training time overlapped for Spanish, U.S. Davis Cup teams

MADRID, Nov. 27 (Xinhuanet) -- Spanish and the U.S. Davis Cup teams, who will meet next week in Seville, had their training time overlapped Saturday afternoon in La Cartuja Stadium.

U.S. team members Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and brothers Bob and Mike Bryan, who arrived Saturday at noon in Seville, only practiced for nearly one hour.

The United States, who delayed its training, bumped into Spain which decided to wait for some time for the other side to end the training in La Cartuja Stadium.

Once the training session of the US players concluded, the Spanish resumed their practice. They will train Sunday on their second day at Seville. Enditem

MisterQ
11-28-2004, 02:43 AM
came across this quote: funny, another serving record, and at Davis Cup ;)

July 17, 1999, Davis Cup SF, Doubles
USA vs Australia* 6-4, 6-3, 3-6, 4-6, 6-3
An interview with:* THE UNITED STATES


Q. Pete, one of your serves was clocked at 149. Couple of us laughed; said, could that be right?
PETE SAMPRAS: It was right, trust me, it was right (laughter).

http://www.geocities.com/hovav13/Quotes_from_Pete_and_his_Colleagues.html

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 02:56 AM
aw.... that match was in BOSTON... too bad I didn't know enough about tennis then :(

That's funny, though..... they must not have verified it, b/c I've never heard that he had that fast a serve.

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 04:33 AM
Another "Can Andy be the DC Savior" article :o:o and good one, Charlie Bricker, they're already THERE lol
======

Will Spirit of '95 move U.S. team?
Published November 28, 2004


U.S. players, heavy underdogs in the Davis Cup final, leave for Spain on Monday, almost nine years to the day the 1995 team flew to Russia and produced perhaps the most dramatic win in Cup history.

On clay, his worst surface, Pete Sampras played all three days, won his Friday singles and went into a full body cramp at the finish, then came back to win the doubles with Todd Martin on Saturday and clinched the title with a singles win on Sunday.

Can this year's team, led by Andy Roddick and also playing on clay, reprise that spectacular road triumph in its Dec. 3-5 tie?

"One of the great things about the away match is that it's easier to keep your guys focused," said Tom Gullikson, who coached the '95 team and made the tough but critical decision to push Sampras into the doubles.

"You don't have as many friends and family around. It's just you against their whole supporting cast, like a bunker mentality. You're the underdog, and you get that sense of, `Let's just stay together and do it.'''

Roddick has won on red clay, though it's certainly not his best surface. Mardy Fish and Vince Spadea, who will compete for the second singles spot, do not have winning clay records, regardless of the color of the dirt. Only the Bryan twins, winners of the 2003 French Open doubles, are favorites to win a point in Sevilla.

In 1995, the U.S. team was no clear favorite, either, despite having two of the top players in the world in Sampras and Jim Courier, who had won consecutive French Opens in 1991 and 1992 and who was French runner-up in 1993.

It turned out to be one of the magical moments in Sampras' career. And, in the end, one of the most sobering, and one that soured him on Davis Cup.

"We came back to the States from Moscow, and no one really cared," Gullikson said. "There was no invite to the White House. No media. Fans couldn't have cared less. I remember Pete saying, `I didn't expect a ticker tape parade but something to show appreciation for what we did.'

"From that point on, it became really hard to recruit guys to play for Davis Cup."

Sampras in the opening match needed nearly four hours and five sets to defeat Andrei Chesnokov 3-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-4. As he raised his arms in jubilation after the final point, he collapsed on the court and spent much of the next 12 hours getting massage and IV feedings.

Courier lost to Yevgeny Kafelnikov, and it was 1-1 going into the second day, and Gullikson was not at all confident with the way Richey Reneberg was playing doubles. "I went to Pete and told him, `I think we might need you tomorrow.' He said, `I don't know. I haven't played doubles in eight months. Why don't you get Richey and Todd [Martin] ready and we'll see how I feel.'

"Saturday, I hit with Pete about a half hour and he said, `I don't feel great, but you're the captain.' And I said, `Then, you're in.' I had to give him my shirt because he didn't have a matching white shirt to go with Todd's.

"Pete started slowly, and I'll never forget how we were a break down early in the first set and he was struggling with his return. All of a sudden, we had a break point and Andrei Olhovskiy tried to hit some cute, angled shot. Pete tracked it down and hit a winner, and Kafelnikov stared at Olhovskiy and began yelling at him. I knew we had them."

On Sunday, Sampras, clearly not 100 percent fit, ran through Kafelnikov in straight sets for the clinching third point of the tie. Andre Agassi, who had, despite injury, flown to Russia to be with the team, sat on the sideline with Courier, and they marveled at how Sampras was exploding on the ball.

"It was the high point of my coaching career, something really special," said Gullikson, whose twin, Tim, who also had been Sampras' coach, had been diagnosed with brain cancer in January.

"Pete and I were thinking about him all the time," said Gullikson. "I remember calling Timmy after a practice one day and told him, `I'm a little worried about Pete. He's not going at it very hard.' He said not to worry about Pete. When the match starts, he'll be there."

And he was.

Roddick knows the history of the '95 team, and maybe it will inspire him. Certainly, for the U.S. to beat Spain he's going to have to elevate his clay-court game. The Americans are going to Europe as heavy long shots, but strange things happen. Ask Gully. It's Davis Cup.

Havok
11-28-2004, 05:00 AM
Well, Andy's there :)

American tennis player Andy Roddick stretches during his training in Seville, Spain, Nov. 27, 2004. The United States will play Spain in this year's Davis Cup final in Seville which will be held between Dec. 3 and Dec. 5. The United States will be trying to capture it's first title since Pete Sampras led the team to the 1995 championship.

http://images.sportsline.com/u/ap/photos/JJ805112714_1024x768.jpg
Um, isn't Andy supposed to be really flexible? He looks like he's in some sort of pain here.:lol:

http://www.jelena-dokic.com/photos/gallery08/767.jpg
That's what the stretch should look like, and now that I've gone through some Dokic photos I hope she comes back strong next year.:tears:

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 05:29 AM
Obviously I wasn't there (darn :( LOL) so I don't know what happened, but it almost looks like he was goofing off a little and just got caught in a bad picture... but, who really knows lmao

:hug: regarding Jelena

star
11-28-2004, 05:33 AM
I think that's one of Andy's problems with movement, Naldo. He need's to work on his leg extension.

Havok
11-28-2004, 05:45 AM
Well I wouldn't judge by photots.;) If you do, then Jelena would be a superb mover, and she's kinda mediocre.:o I just said that because Andy is a very flexible dude, but I'm sure there's something behind that face he's pulling.

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 05:50 AM
Well it also sounds like they had almost just gotten off the plane when they practiced today...as you said, it's one pic so I wouldn't read that much into it lol. They're there almost a full week early and are practicing, that's all I care about at this time :p Plus, I don't know that Andy's legs are supposed to be that flexible. I remember hearing people say that his dad used to make him stretch his arms and back a lot, but yeah. who knows:shrug: My first reaction when I saw this pic was just to laugh - I assumed there was a funny story or something behind it, I didn't think about him actually stretching at all :lol:

Havok
11-28-2004, 05:54 AM
He is flexible though, I've seen him many a times sliding/stretching for shots, and one time he did a semi-clijsters split. There's also that one shot from the 02 USO where he did that high kick. If you're not flexible enough, there's no way you can kick that high.;)

superpinkone37
11-28-2004, 06:26 AM
yeah fom that picture alone, it looks more like he was messing around based on that face and the fact that he used to do all those crazy high kicking crap so yeah. of course, we dont really know what happened, but i dont think he was really in pain from that stretch, just that face was caught in the photo :lol:

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 06:43 AM
Another article.... at least this one doesn't quite as badly pin everything on Andy :lol: but calling him winning two matches "more likely"? LMAO... I guess everything's relative :p

The last segment is just. well, stupid.
=======

U.S. team hopes to be more than clay pigeon in Spain
Americans try to buck long odds in Davis Cup final
By DALE ROBERTSON
Copyright 2004 Houston Chronicle

The last time the United States entered a Davis Cup tie as a bigger underdog than it is this week was, come to think of it, the last time the Yanks were made to go to Spain.

Before the fact, the 2000 team had even less chance of winning than this one. Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi had both begged off, leaving John McEnroe to finish his ill-fated, one-year tenure as captain with a humiliating 5-0 semifinal drubbing on the red clay in Santander. Furious at being abandoned by his big guns — and former teammates — McEnroe quit soon thereafter, turning the reins over to his less-volatile younger brother, Patrick.

Now the latter must lead the Americans back onto Spanish dirt, where the home team hasn't lost since about the time Queen Isabella was giving Chris Columbus his mandate to find a shortcut to India. Again, the scenario looks bad, although Paddy Mac will at least have the services of America's best player, Andy Roddick, and one of the world's best doubles teams, Bob and Mike Bryan, when the championship tie begins Friday.

What McEnroe could have used was America's second-best player, Andre Agassi. Instead, the U.S. No. 2 will be Mardy Fish, whose 2004 clay-court season consisted of a 6-3, 6-1 loss to Alex Bogomolov Jr. at Westside Tennis Club in April. (My note - this was when Mardy was first dealing with his big hip problem - I was at this match, and it was just really horrible)

But, whereas Agassi had no good excuse for snubbing Johnny Mac four years ago, this time he flat-out conceded he didn't think he was up to the task. He's 34 years old and has been hurt off and on, most recently with a reinjured hip that possibly kept him out of last week's Masters Cup. The prospect of playing back-to-back best-of-five clay-court matches in what figures to be a terribly hostile environment seemed potentially a lose-lose proposition. Literally.

"I don't believe I have that kind of energy to give anymore," said the man who has won 30 Davis Cup matches, second only among American players during the Open Era to John McEnroe's astonishing 59.

The blokes in red, white and blue who flew to Spain on Friday are full of energy. It's their clay-court acumen that's open to scrutiny, although the Bryans should be superior to whichever team Spanish captain Jordi Arrese tabs. Presumably, Arrese will pair youngsters Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal, letting former world No. 1s Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero handle singles.

It's a given that the Bryans must win their match for the U.S. team to have a chance. That means Roddick and Fish will have to both split theirs if the Americans are to reclaim the Cup after a nine-year hiatus. More likely, some say, is a Roddick sweep, given Fish's feet of clay.

The X-factor in the mix is Ferrero, who has had a dreadful year. The 2003 Roland Garros champion and U.S. Open runner-up failed to win a tournament and plunged to 31st in the rankings. His last official match was the Masters Series stop in mid-October in Madrid, where Peruvian journeyman Luis Horna whipped him 6-3, 6-1. It's said Ferrero's health is fine but his confidence is now shot.

Still, with 22,000 of his countrymen rooting him on while harassing Roddick mercilessly, might he be able to regain some of his magic of a year ago? That's what Arrese hopes as he attempts to avenge the quarterfinal defeat suffered at the Americans' hands on Westside's grass in 2002.

As for Moya, who has been plagued by shoulder problems, he seemed in solid form in the Masters Cup despite failing to advance beyond the round-robin. He pushed both finalists, Lleyton Hewitt and Roger Federer, to three sets.

Anti-Americanism?

One of the Spanish journalists who came to Houston to cover the Masters Cup is certain the American Davis Cuppers won't be made to feel very welcome in Seville once they're on the court. Although Spanish fans don't wrap themselves in their country's flag like American fans tend to, Idoya Noain said they definitely pull together for international competition, whether it's the Olympics, soccer's World Cup or tennis' Davis Cup.

Most Spaniards, like most other Europeans, opposed the U.S. decision to invade Iraq and the Spanish government originally aligned with the American's effort fell because of it. But Noain, whose Barcelona newspaper, El Periodico, is left of center politically, believes Spanish anger over American foreign policy won't be the motivation behind the hostility.

"Tennis as a sport is not so big in Spain," the New York-based journalist said, "but the Davis Cup will be, with the championship to be decided. The crowds will be rabid because they will want Spain to win, not because they are anti-American."

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 03:53 PM
couple more articles :)
----------------
Patrick McEnroe
By Anthony Cotton
Denver Post Sports Writer


Despite spending most of his life traveling in the same circles as his brother John, one of the game's all-time greats, Patrick McEnroe has forged his own impressive career in tennis. The captain of the U.S. Davis Cup team that will meet Spain in the 2004 finals this weekend, the 38-year-old was granted an extension last week, insuring his leadership through 2006. Before going overseas, McEnroe held court on a number of topics relating to the game, as well as his famous name.

Anthony Cotton: Is it just automatic now that if a U.S. team goes to Europe to play, it will be on a clay court?

Patrick McEnroe: Pretty much. Obviously, it's our toughest surface to play on. A couple of years ago, we played in Croatia and it was on a lightning-fast indoor surface. (Andy) Roddick was injured then, so that really hurt us. It's not a lock, but nine out of 10 times, we're going to see the slow stuff when we go overseas.

AC: How does a Davis Cup team prepare for the finals? Do you break down film or show previous matches between the players?

PM: Tennis is different from other sports. We don't do a lot of film stuff. We know all the players so well and we know their tendencies, and tennis being a one-on-one sport, there's not much of a difference in how you approach a particular match. We'll play our game, but we know there are things we have to do differently - be a little more patient, be a little smarter about our tactics - than we would be on a hard court or faster conditions.

AC: You've coached the U.S. Olympic and Davis Cup teams; do you ever look at something like the Ryder Cup and try to take something from that?

PM: We were at Roddick's house the week before the Davis Cup semifinals, and that was the same time the Ryder Cup was going on. So, in between our sessions, the boys would gather around the television and watch the Ryder Cup. It was nice to see how our guys reacted, watching their sense of the lack of camaraderie on the Ryder Cup team and saying we have it on ours. We've tried to build together and use it as our strength. You have to go out and do your own thing, like golf, but our guys really support each other and push each other. That's been a positive for us this year and hopefully for the next few years.

AC: So, the U.S. vs. Spain. Are we talking Pistons-Pacers here?

PM: Well, I can guarantee none of our guys are going to go into the crowd. The Spanish fans are incredibly loud - you can't understand what a Davis Cup match is like if you've never been.

It's really unlike any tennis event. It's more like a super-intense college rivalry in basketball or football. That's how into it the fans are. The Spanish fans have been known to be very tough and yell things at you and throw things at you. We just have to keep our heads down and go about our business and try not to give the crowd anything more to play off of.

AC: You and your brother must have a great love of the Davis Cup. Where does that stem from?

PM: It comes from the way we grew up and the pride we had in representing the country. We were very much into team sports as kids - we played basketball, we played soccer, we played baseball - and so we loved the team aspects of sports. But in tennis, you don't really get that, but you do in Davis Cup.

The experiences you have in Davis Cup are really unique. When you're a tennis player and you're used to doing your own thing and being selfish - and that's the nature of the beast - it's nice to be part of a unit. John was probably the greatest Davis Cup player we've ever had, because he had that passion and intensity. Obviously, my personality is different, but I'd like to think I bring that to my experience as a captain. Certainly, the greatest experience of my career has been being a captain.

AC: There seemed to be a stretch where American men seemed reluctant to play Davis Cup. Are we coming out of that now?

PM: It's funny, we do get that rap a little bit. (Andre) Agassi played Davis Cup for many years and was incredibly supportive, and (Pete) Sampras did play quite a bit - he played a couple of years ago in the last year he was on tour. We think that way because those guys were so big and in the latter stages of their careers they didn't play as much. But it's a bigger issue than just an American one.

AC: How so?

PM: Davis Cup is spread out over the course of a year. I would like to see them revise the format, but that's another issue. My job coming in four years ago was obviously to try to win, but also, I think, to reignite a spirit within the team and within the effort. I think we're in really good shape in that our young players coming up are committed to Davis Cup and love the whole idea of it. My goal was to build on that and instill a "build it and they will come" sort of thing.

AC: So what would you change?

PM: I think there's a buzz coming back to Davis Cup, but I would make it more of a seasonal-type event, so that the average fan could get it and understand what it is and where it is and what it means.

AC: It seems like there was a time when the 2001 semis would be going on, but the 2002 first round was already taking place - it was a little hard to follow.

PM: That's still going on. Australia, for example, won it last year in the finals in December, but in early February, they were out of it for 2005. I think they would be better off with a four-team, grand finale sort of thing - a Grand Slam sort of event in October, where you had four teams coming to one location. It would almost be like a Final Four type of atmosphere.

It's hard when you go to Spain and you'll see 25,000 people there and know that it almost takes over the country. Then you say, "Well, maybe it is just an American problem."

But we know we care about it and we're passionate about it, and at the end of the day that's all that you can do. And if the American public and the American sports media catches on to it, so much the better.

AC: That leads me to the next thing: the state of the game here. America was ranked fifth in the world, which seems weird given its history.

PM: Hopefully that's going to change. Those rankings take into account the last few years of Davis Cup, and we got to the semis a couple of years ago and we're in the finals this year, but we haven't won it since '95. Clearly, not having our best players playing consistently throughout the '90s hurt us, but the reality is that tennis is the most international sport after soccer. So you've got players coming up from all over the world, but it's not the second-biggest sport in our country. You've got the pick of the litter in other countries, but here we've got to fight to get them on the tennis court.

AC: You mention your brother and your different personalities. Over the years, how did you navigate your way through the sport with him around?

PM: I'd be lying if I said there weren't some tough times along the way for me, whether it was deciding where to go to college and following in his footsteps, or going out onto the pro tour.

But I realized that I was a pretty good tennis player. I wasn't going to be as good as my brother, but who was? He was one of the best of all time. At the end of the day, it was a case of what I wanted, if I wanted to become a solid tennis professional.

There were times when people wanted to interview you when you lost in a qualifier, and that was difficult because you're going, "Why would anyone want to talk to me?" But in time, I realized there were also a lot of advantages to being John's brother. It helped get me into television, and that's something I think I've proven I can do. I guess I've been drawn into the same types of things as him, because that's where my interests are. I didn't want to not do something only because my brother was so good at it.

AC: So we can look forward to the Patrick McEnroe television show sometime soon?

PM: We'll see about that. We'll just see about that.

===============================
===============================

U.S. Quest For Davis Cup Comes Down To Match With Spain On Clay

By LEE HOWARD
Marketplace/Real Estate Editor
Published on 11/28/2004

The drive for the davis Cup that began indoors in February at the Mohegan Sun Arena has come down to this: The U.S. must win next weekend outdoors, in Spain, on a cursed red-clay surface that took out all American men this year by the second round of the French Open.

“We're not clay-court specialists, by any stretch,” team captain Patrick McEnroe said during a recent conference call, in stunning understatement.

And the only guy who could arguably make an impact on clay, former French Open champion Andre Agassi, won't be playing. He didn't commit to Davis Cup this year, and he didn't think it fair to show up only for the final.

So McEnroe will bring the players who brought him this far: Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish and the Bryan brothers, doubles specialists Bob and Mike (former French Open champs). All but Fish were there at the beginning of the year (Robby Ginepri played singles at the Mohegan Sun because Fish had taken some time off early in the year and had lost all of his matches since coming back).

“We understand what we're up against,” McEnroe said of the upcoming matches in a soccer stadium in Seville. “When you're talking about well over 20,000 people for a tennis match, you know, that's right near record territory for a tennis match. So it's going to be crazy.”

As for the surface, McEnroe acknowledged that playing on a super-slow clay court is going to be a challenge for guys like Roddick and Fish, who enjoy earning free points on their serve and generally overpower their opponents. But he pointed out that the team hung in there a couple years ago at a semifinal Davis Cup match in France, playing well despite a 4-1 loss.

“It's sort of one of those Davis Cup moments that will be embedded in my memory, getting our team together after we lost that match, sitting everybody down in that room and saying, ‘This is the team that I want to stay with. You're the group of guys.'”

That team included Roddick and Fish, but not the Bryan brothers. Todd Martin and Connecticut native James Blake combined for the doubles win in that tie after Blake and Roddick had lost tough singles matches the previous day. Blake, unfortunately, has been injured lately, but even before the injury his Davis Cup star had been falling as other, younger players overtook him in the rankings.

“James has played great in Davis Cup,” McEnroe said when I asked what it would take to get Blake back on the team. “But my No. 1 concern is him getting healthy and back out on the tour, and we'll take it from there.”

Instead of Blake, who accompanied the team to its last match in South Carolina, McEnroe has named Vince Spadea as the traveling fifth man who will be there in case someone gets injured or Fish falters on the clay.

Faltering on clay isn't an option for the Spanish team, which would seem to eat the stuff for breakfast because it's been so successful on the surface. Both Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero are former French Open champions, Ferrero just last year. Both are also former world No. 1 singles players, though Moya is currently No. 5 and Ferrero No. 31.

Their doubles team will likely be Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal, though Robredo currently has a higher singles ranking than Ferrero and therefore could get the call in singles instead.

“I wouldn't be shocked if Robredo or Nadal play singles,” McEnroe said. “Ferrero has had a down year, and Moya is a little bit questionable with his shoulder.”

Still, McEnroe figures to have a realistic chance at the Cup, one of his singles players has to pull through on Friday, then the Bryan brothers have to come up big Saturday to set up another chance at one of the two singles matches next Sunday.

“Ferraro has not had a good year,” said Cliff Drysdale, a tennis commentator for the USA Network who was in on the conference call. “I think my money would definitely be on Roddick to beat him. Against Moya, it's more problematic, but I would make that close to a 50-50 call between the two, notwithstanding it's on clay.

“And the doubles boys are a great team. I don't expect Mardy Fish to be able to win either one of his second matches or indeed Vince if he gets to play. So I think it's 3-2 ... I think it's a potential 3-2 (win) for the U.S.”

The United States has a big motivation factor this year: The lack of luck its players have had in the Grand Slam tournaments, according to Mike Bryan.

“Now that we haven't got a Grand Slam this year, and Andy hasn't got one — I don't think any American got one — we're putting our focus on this tie,” he said. “The U.S. hasn't won a Davis Cup since 1995. It makes it a little bit more special.”

And if the U.S. wins, does that make the Mohegan Sun court McEnroe's lucky surface for the next Davis Cup match on U.S. soil?

“We had a good time up there,” McEnroe laughed. “It was a little chilly up there in February. Maybe we can come back there when it's a little warmer.”

superpinkone37
11-28-2004, 04:34 PM
thanks for the articles Deb :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-28-2004, 06:57 PM
You're welcome ;) Here's another... wow a record! I hope the boys are ready for this...
========
Spain-U.S. Match Expected to Set Record

Associated Press


SEVILLE, Spain - This week's U.S.-Spain Davis Cup final is expected to break the attendance record for a sanctioned tennis match.

The temporary clay court set up in Seville's Olympic Stadium has been configured to seat 26,600. The existing mark was set in 1954 in Sydney, Australia, when 25,578 watched the United States defeat Australia in the Davis Cup final.

Exhibition tennis matches have drawn more fans, including the 30,472 who were at the "Battle of the Sexes" between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs at the Houston Astrodome in 1973.

"To play in such a big stadium is impressive," U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe said. "Our guys are excited. We know how difficult it is going to be as the underdog."

His team arrived Saturday and held its first full workout Sunday. The best-of-five final begins Friday, with two singles matches. Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish lead the Americans, while past No. 1s and French Open champions Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya head the hosts.

Spain is appearing in its third Davis Cup final in five seasons. The United States, which has won the Davis Cup a record 31 times, last reached the final in 1997. Its last victory was in 1995.

While the Spaniards have won 11 straight Davis Cup matches at home, the Americans have some impressive head-to-head records. Roddick is 12-0 against all members of the Spanish team, although one of those matches was on clay. Fish is 4-1 against the Spanish players, but none of his wins came on clay.

Golfnduck
11-29-2004, 12:25 AM
Thanks for the articles Deb!!!!

brazuca5copas
11-29-2004, 02:34 AM
Pics sunday :)

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 02:41 AM
thanks! it is so interesting to me that they practiced together on saturday LOL

Here's kinda a funny article
=========

Spanish favourites for Davis Cup Final

TOM LAPPIN


LET’S face it, the occasion doesn’t occupy a central place in the British sporting calendar. And despite being the culmination of a global competition in a sport which the British claim to have invented, you won’t find too many in these islands eagerly awaiting the result.

For your information, the Davis Cup final takes place in Seville from Friday to Sunday, and the reason for British apathy is of course the fact that any British involvement in this final is about as likely as Neil Lennon being the after-dinner speaker at the Ibrox Christmas party.

The British team usually exits at stage two of the Humiliatingly Inept Group, after a plucky fight against the deft racquet mastery of Bosnia-Herzegovina or the Solomon Islands. Their do-or-die battles are usually to avoid relegation to a group where they would have to play against countries that have never heard of tennis, but are willing to give it a go.

Part of the reason the Davis Cup never quite makes it into the ranks of compelling sporting spectacles though is that tennis is a quintessentially individual sport. Like golf, it’s about ego, psychological strength and the ruthless pursuit of the big cheque. The cheers and encouragement of team-mates can only ever be a distraction. Anyone who has ever seen the awkward way Greg Rusedski and Tim Henman slap palms after winning a point in doubles will know that some teams were never meant to be.

That’s not to say that this weekend’s final will be a disappointment. Its greatest asset is that it is taking place in Seville. Spanish sports crowds have been hogging more than their share of the headlines lately, and this could continue that run. The Spanish, as they showed in their previous Davis Cup final victory four years ago, are gleefully dismissive of the perceived etiquette of tennis. They are as happy to cheer an opponent’s double fault as one of their own team’s winners, and an American serve is quite likely to be interrupted with a feverish yell of "Hala Espana!"

The venue is Seville’s Olympic Stadium, a white elephant (well, do you remember the Seville Olympics?) familiar to Celtic fans, but not entirely conducive to tennis, although the matches will be played in an enclosed area with seats for 22,000 spectators, which will be the biggest crowd for a Davis Cup final since 1954. The Spanish, with the most strength in depth of any tennis nation in the world, will be the clear favourites. After winning in 2000, they were edged out by the Australians in last year’s final, but they are playing on their favoured clay surface, and will have those partisan fans baying for American blood.

The Americans haven’t won since 1995, which, considering they have been champions on 31 occasions, comprises something of a lean period. The captain Patrick McEnroe has a team which emphasises youth, with Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish contesting the singles, and the brothers Mike and Bob Bryan making up the doubles team.

There had been some talk of Andre Agassi, who despite his advanced age of 34 was still reaching the latter stages of tournaments, joining the team, but Agassi, after meeting with McEnroe, admitted that he probably didn’t have the energy levels required for a couple of gruelling singles matches in quick succession.

The Spanish, while having the youthful Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal in the team, are likely to rely on the experience of Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya for the singles. Ferrero’s form though has been so abject this season that it might be advisable to throw in Robredo or Nadal at the singles stage. More likely they will wait for the doubles, depending on the score in the match at that point. The Bryan twins might not be household names in tennis, but they won the French Open doubles title last year, so are no mugs, and as one of the brothers (it wasn’t exactly clear which) pointed out, they have been playing together for the last 26 years.

The Spanish won’t care who scores the decisive point if they win the trophy, but local preference might be for Nadal. His uncle is still playing top-flight football in Spain, and at just 18 he is already tipped to be one of the best Spanish players ever. That’s the dream Sunday scenario: Nadal diving headlong to volley a winner down the line, with the Andalucian sun setting behind the main stand , and 22 000 crazed Spaniards letting off fire-crackers and howling their exultation. Three Britons watching on Sky Sports will raise a bored eyebrow and scan the text channels for news of Tim Henman’s elbow strain.

Golfnduck
11-29-2004, 02:41 AM
Thanks for the pics!!!

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 03:05 PM
from an article about the attendance record
--------------

McEnroe said Sunday that the court seemed to play slow, by no surprise, with the open-air atmosphere and temperatures in the upper 50s and low 60s contributing to the slow conditions.

“It’s pretty slow and the ball is not bouncing very high and seems to be staying pretty low,” said McEnroe. “We are just going to try and get used to the clay. We have to play our game and adjust slightly to the court surface and our strategy for the Spanish players who like to play on clay.”

Vince Spadea of Boca Raton, Fla., has accompanied the team to Seville as an alternate player. McEnroe also brought left-hander Wayne Odesnik of Weston, Fla., and Alex Kuznetsov of Richboro, Pa., as practice partners for the U.S. team.

===========

just *slightly* PMac???? LOL!

brazuca5copas
11-29-2004, 03:25 PM
:D

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 03:35 PM
thanks! :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 03:54 PM
Pieross posted this in the Mardy forum... don't even wanna know what Andy is doing LMAO

http://www.tennis.com.cn/bbs/uploadFiles/2004-11/29_480353_1.jpg


Nice Andy nice, the behind the back backhand. Definitely going to work ;)
http://www.tennis.com.cn/bbs/uploadFiles/2004-11/29_480353_2.jpg

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 06:50 PM
the stadium....wow!!
http://us.news1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/rids/20041129/i/r3348345933.jpg

http://us.news1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/rids/20041129/i/r1599716708.jpg

http://images.sportsline.com/u/ap/photos/MAD803112912_1024x768.jpg

And 3 from Getty.... each one is funnier than the next LMFAOOOOOO

Natasc
11-29-2004, 07:00 PM
Damn!!

I can't wait for see Rod!! Hey Deb, Rod's mach will be friday right?

Neely
11-29-2004, 07:00 PM
hey cool, nice pictures!

looking at the stadium, seeing that it is open... question now: did I read it correctly some time ago that the arena has a retractable roof that can/will be closed for the tie?

Or did I mess up some facts?

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 07:01 PM
Neely, I think they built the roof specially for this! It's never going to open for DC as far as I understood

Natasc, I'm not sure what time Andy will play - the order of play will be when the draw is made. I think they're starting at noon local time on Friday, though, so it will be by sometime in the afternoon. Are you in Brasil? So I'd guess it would be in the morning for you sometime. but I don't know anything more than that sorry

Natasc
11-29-2004, 07:06 PM
Neely, I think they built the roof specially for this! It's never going to open for DC as far as I understood

Natasc, I'm not sure what time Andy will play - the order of play will be when the draw is made. I think they're starting at noon local time on Friday, though, so it will be by sometime in the afternoon. Are you in Brasil? So I'd guess it would be in the morning for you sometime. but I don't know anything more than that sorry

Well, in maters of madri the matchs starting in a very good hour for me so I hope that Andy's match also began and a good time for me. I just know that Davis will pass but I don't know the orders of the matchs. I hope that pass in afternoon here. But if you know something about the match please tell me, thanks :worship:

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 07:08 PM
the order of play/draw will be done on Thursday, so we'll post that info here when it's released :)

Neely
11-29-2004, 07:10 PM
Thanks, Deb... just wanted to reassure, wasn't anymore certain what exactly I've read or not...

Deboogle!.
11-29-2004, 07:11 PM
sure :) I'm not positive, but I think it was originally open and they built that balloony cover just for this. Looks like it'll be crazy, I hope the boys are ready!

snaillyyy
11-29-2004, 08:40 PM
So many articles to catch up on :haha: love all those articles and pics :worship:

Golfnduck
11-29-2004, 09:58 PM
That last picture is too funny for words!!! :sobbing:

andyroxmysox12191
11-29-2004, 10:04 PM
:sobbing: omg great pics :haha:

tangerine_dream
11-29-2004, 10:36 PM
Great stuff, thanks Deb :kiss: I'm excited about the DC final. Should be really exciting. :yippee: I hope our guys can get a match or two off the Spaniards and at least give them a competitive final. :banana:

Ok Neely, I've sworn off GM for the rest of the year but your "Excuses if Andy or Mardy should win a set off the Spanairds" thread was just too good! :haha: Neely you :devil: You're brilliant :worship:

Natasc
11-30-2004, 12:00 AM
Yeah, will be damn hard to USA win this DC but I have hope and faith in USA :yeah:

Havok
11-30-2004, 12:33 AM
Love the shoes.:D

Golfnduck
11-30-2004, 12:45 AM
Tangy, I try to stay away from the GM, but usually the idiots in there are just too entertaining. I have to go in there just for a laugh.

superpinkone37
11-30-2004, 12:47 AM
omfg those pictures are hilarious!!!!! :sobbing: :haha: :rolls:

tangerine_dream
11-30-2004, 02:23 AM
Most Spaniards, like most other Europeans, opposed the U.S. decision to invade Iraq and the Spanish government originally aligned with the American's effort fell because of it. But Noain, whose Barcelona newspaper, El Periodico, is left of center politically, believes Spanish anger over American foreign policy won't be the motivation behind the hostility.

"Tennis as a sport is not so big in Spain," the New York-based journalist said, "but the Davis Cup will be, with the championship to be decided. The crowds will be rabid because they will want Spain to win, not because they are anti-American."

Sorry, but this is a load of crap. ;) I fully expect the Americans to get a horrible reception that will most certainly be tinged with anti-Americanism and even many MTF posters are drooling at the thought of the Americans suffering a humiliating loss in Europe; not because they're fans of Spain, mind you, they just hate America. :o Is this surprising? Hardly. As I've said before, I've noticed that most European countries cannot (or will not) separate politics from their sports. Americans rarely mix the two and I'm glad for that. Maybe it's because we're the lone superpower so all the little people have to direct their hate at someone so we are an easy target. :angel:

On that note, can anyone confirm the following? I did not see the 2002 DC. Was the Houston crowd really as rude as the Spaniards made it out to be? If so, that's a shame. The DC crowd I experienced in Connecticut couldn't be more gracious and sporting of both teams. Then again, it wasn't a final. Heh.

SPAIN OUT FOR US REVENGE
Spain co-captains Juan Avendano and Jordi Arrese have stoked the fires ahead of this weekend's Davis Cup final by vowing to take revenge on the USA.

Avendano and Arrese still have bitter memories of Spain's quarter-final defeat in Houston in 2002, a match in which the hosts were accused of a lack of sportsmanship.

"They treated us very badly there and the Americans' way of acting was not what we were expecting," Avendano said.

Arrese added: "I have been in the Davis Cup for 20 years as a player and now as captain and I have never been treated as badly as we were treated in Houston.

"They acted as if they thought they were the kings of the world, the people at the club were awful towards us and the US team did nothing to stop it.

"We didn't even have showers in our dressing rooms, while they had jacuzzis. We even had trouble finding somewhere to go to the toilet."

Avendano believes Spain - who will be represented by Carlos Moya, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Tommy Robredo and Rafael Nadal - should win on the red clay in Seville but acknowledges the visitors have some quality players.

"Our team have to be favourites, we are first in the world rankings," said Avendano.

"But if we lose to them, it would not be a failure. We are up against the world number two and one of the best doubles pairs in the game."

The world number two in question is big-serving Andy Roddick, who Avendano reckons will play a big role alongside Mardy Fish and doubles brothers Bob and Mike Bryan.

"In theory Roddick should win his two matches and their doubles are better than ours," he said.

Golfnduck
11-30-2004, 02:27 AM
I hope Andy can win both of his matches. I hope he get JC first.

star
11-30-2004, 02:29 AM
It sounds as if they were talking about the facilities and not the crowd.

I don't really think Spain can talk about home crowds after their tie with Australia. :rolleyes:

Golfnduck
11-30-2004, 02:31 AM
That is true. The Aussie crowds were one in a million. "CMON!!!"

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 02:51 AM
the 2002 tie wasn't a final either, it was a QF, I can't imagine the Houston crowd being as rude as we all know the Spanish crowd is going to be. But whatever, Pmac definitely seems to know what to expect so as long as Andy and Mardy keep their damn emotions in check, it'll be what it'll be. It won't be a surprise, so yeah

And tangy, I really don't think it has anything to do with anti-americanism. Look at how Wayne Ferreira was treated by the Spanish crowds last year in Madrid where he dared to almost beat JCF. And he's not American.

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 04:21 AM
HAHAHAHAAHAHHA I love translators
==========
Andy Roddick, dos del mundo será el estandarte del equipo americano que este fin de semana disputará a España el tĂ*tulo de la Copa Davis en Sevilla. En entrevista con EFE, el jugador de Omaha asegurĂł que de su actuaciĂłn en el Masters de Houston le ha servido para comprobar que está listo para este duelo y además ha advertido que el conjunto USA sabe jugar en tierra.



"Serve many positive things of the participation in the Masters because I played very good parties and I gave an amount of positive steps in the correct direction", emphasized Roddick. "Among that I can play in any track and do it well".

Roddick recognized that the intensity that had lived in the Glass Masters de Houston has served him as great preparation for the confrontation against Spain in Seville, where will be assures that its concentration will be still greater.

"All the parties of the Glass Davis are very intense, but much more if it is the end and in Seville, reason why I am prepared to fight with the rest of the equipment and to do it with the positive elements that I obtained when facing in four party the best ones of the world", indicated Roddick.

The number one American is conscious that the challenge to win to Spain in Seville is not far from easy and to more do it in track of beaten earth and before a very special public who will support to the local equipment.

"Of all that I am conscious, but also of our possibilities and that we are going to demonstrate that we know to play in beaten earth track, although as it is logical is not my fort", it emphasized Roddick. "If we managed to make the things well and we took advantage of our opportunities we can give the surprise".

"We are an equipment"

Roddick said that as number one of the equipment of the equipment their points of individual will be decisive, but also Mardy Fish and the brothers Mike and Bob Bryan, in the double, "will make their work".

"We are an equipment, just like the one of Spain and each point that we dispute is the decisive one, but most important of everything it is that mental and I have physically worked for this great duel", emphasized Roddick.

"I am in better physical training conditions than ever because there am been without no injury during all the season and arrived at the end in form fullness", it emphasized.

"I am conscious that everybody speech that the United States has not gained a title of the Glass Davis in 10 years, but in that I do not have anything to do. Now we are a different equipment and we have the possibility of gaining a title ", valued Roddick.

"There are hard work in the last four years and now we have the great opportunity to obtain a title that deludes to us", it clarified.

Spain, favorite

Roddick recognized that the equipment of Spain is the great favorite by the factor of the beaten earth track, but the fact that to be conscious of that reality will help them to make its work better.

"We needed to gain three parties if we want to gain the title and we will have to obtain them before players of the class of Carlos Moyá and Juan Carlos Ferrero. The rest does not count nor will have greater importance in the end ", analyzed Roddick.

"Carlos has played the great tennis in the Masters Glass and I believe that the great question is Juan Carlos, by the physical problems that all the year has had", it said.

Roddick, of 22 years, indicated that it trusted as much Fish as in the Bryan brothers and the direction of the captain of the equipment totally Patrick McEnroe, the man who has given to new identity to American tennis in the Glass Davis.

"We are ready to surpass the type of track, the pressure of the spectators and to the Spanish players. Soon we will see what is what happens when all the parties have been disputed ", indicated Roddick.

Ex- number one of the world said that it did not want to comment out no on the absence of Andre Agassi by his absence in the equipment. "Nobody within the equipment has thought what we could do with Agassi because the reality is that we have to Mardy Fish, that is a great friend, a great tennis player and with whom we have gained important victories that have now allowed us to fight by the title of champions", Roddick added.

The player of Omaha reiterated that to be favorite to the title he did not mean that they did not go to gain it.

"We are conscious that we have a great opportunity, not always Davis can be disputed to a end of the Glass, and we are going to try to take advantage of it, and after nine years without obtaining a title we want to finish with that gust of wind", emphasized Roddick.

http://newstec.sportec.es/noticias.asp?deporte=tenis&fichero=2004/11/20041129_1&p=1&t=1

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 04:45 AM
Magill: Current Davis Cup team has familiar feel

The city of Seville in southwestern Spain is the bull-fighting capital of the world and equally famous for its flamenco dancing. However, this Friday, Saturday and Sunday it will be the site of the United States-Spain Davis Cup finals that will be watched by millions of fans on ESPN.

It is of special interest to the many Athenians who well remember four key members of the American cast: Captain Patrick McEnroe, who represented Stanford in four NCAA tournaments in Athens (1985-88); Andy Roddick, the singles ace of the US team who often visited Athens to watch his older brother John star for Georgia in 1995-98; and the Bryan twins, Bob and Mike, who led Stanford to the NCAA Triple Crown in 1998 and are now the world's doubles champions.

I'd love to be in Seville myself, and actually received an invitation Monday morning to be the guest of Randy Walker, Georgia tennis letterman in 1988-89, who now is media director of the United States Tennis Association.

Randy, a native of New Canaan, Conn., was recommended to me by Bob Troup, a Georgia classmate and Marine Corps buddy. Randy graduated with a journalism degree and was sports editor of The Red and Black during his college days here.

In his phone conversation, Randy described the extensive preparations the Spanish have made:

"They have built a red clay tennis court in the end zone of the city's soccer stadium which seats 70,000. There will be temporary bleachers on the sides of the court that will seat 26,000. All seats have been sold and the largest crowd ever to witness a sanctioned tennis match will be on hand. The TV contract requires that there be a roof over the court in order for the match to be played on time, rain or shine. And, the Spanish have spent $1 million erecting a roof. They also built two practice courts at the other end zone of the stadium."

Randy said he's been so busy he hasn't had time to get a haircut. I told him he ought to find Figaro, the most famous hair dresser in the world, featured in the opera "The Barber of Seville."

The United States would be favored to win if the match were played on any surface other than slow red clay. The Spanish are led by two of the greatest clay court players of recent years, Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero, both former No. 1 players and former French Open champions on clay. They also have perhaps the world's best young doubles player in Rafael Nadal.

The Bryans, who have won the French Open doubles in 2003 and recently captured the ATP world doubles title for the second straight year, will be favored to win the doubles point. But Roddick and Mardy Fish (incidentally, a good friend of former Georgia player Bo Hodge) will be the underdogs against Moya and Ferrero in the four singles matches on clay.

So, it's going to be tough for the U.S. to get the necessary three points.

Although the U.S. has won more Davis Cup titles than any other country (31 to runner-up Australia's 29), it has been nine long years since its name was engraved on the sterling silver cup former Harvard NCAA champion Dwight Davis donated 104 years ago.

Incidentally, former collegians have played a part in all U.S. Davis Cup matches, either as a player or captain, or both.

The last time the U.S. won the Davis Cup was in 1995 on indoor clay courts in Moscow. The U.S. defeated Russia 3-2. Todd Martin (Northwestern) and Pete Sampras won the doubles and the captain was Tom Gullickson (Southern Illinois-Edwardsville). Both Martin and Gullikson played in the NCAAs in Athens.

Randy, I certainly appreciate your invitation to be with you in Seville, but I'm behind schedule in writing a history of intercollegiate tennis in the U.S., to be published early next year (hopefully).

However, I'll certainly be watching the play on TV and listening to Cliff Drysdale (who broadcast the 1984 NCAA finals in Athens) and Mal Washington (Michigan), who won the ITA All-America singles in Athens in the fall of 1988.

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 03:41 PM
Does anyone else care about these articles? I won't bother posting them if no one wants to read lol

It sounds like PMac has now officially chosen Mardy....big shocker.

Here's this funny pic without the tag

http://us.news2.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/afp/20041130/capt.sge.kmh45.301104135417.photo00.photo.default-260x397.jpg

===========

Ferrero counting on clay to hold back Roddick
Tue 30 November, 2004 12:13

MADRID, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Juan Carlos Ferrero hopes slow clay courts will help Spain's Davis Cup players claim a first victory over world number two Andy Roddick when they meet the United States in the final in Seville this week.

"He has always beaten us, but on fast surfaces. Now we will be on clay, which is our surface," said Ferrero, who along with his three team mates has never beaten the hard-serving American.

"He is a complicated player for us. I have only played him once, and I lost, in the 2003 final of the U.S. Open," Ferrero said in an interview with sports daily Marca.

Roddick has played 12 matches in total against Ferrero, Carlos Moya, Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo, and won them all. He holds a 3-0 record against Moya, like Ferrero a former world number one.

The low altitude of Seville, where the final is being held from Friday to Sunday, combined with the slow court, may help to dull Roddick's lethal serve -- the fastest in the world.

Ferrero, the only player from either team to have lifted the trophy before, said he was well rested after more than a month away from the circuit. Spain won the Davis Cup in 2000.

He took a break after a humbling defeat to Peru's Luis Horna in his first match of the October Madrid Masters tournament, which he blamed partly on a change of racquet.

"I was mentally tired and needed a rest," the 24-year-old said. "I have worked a lot on my resistance so I can last through five-set matches...I feel a lot better with my new racquet."

==================
===================
====================

Life in the slow lane as Spain and USA chase Davis Cup glory

SEVILLE, Spain (AFP) - This week's Davis Cup final showdown between hosts Spain and the United States will be a gruelling battle of wits with the hosts having laid the slowest imaginable claycourt surface at Seville's Estadio Olimpico.


Spain are leaving nothing to chance as they go after only their second title, the first having come at Australia's expense in Barcelona four years ago.


This year's final kicks off on Friday at a venue where Michael Johnson (news - web sites) set the 400-meter world record in the 1999 World Athletics Championships. The athletics track has, however, had to be taken up to refurbish a venue which will nonetheless house some 25,000 people for what is being billed as officially the biggest ever final crowd.


The United States, by contrast, are hell bent on taking their tally to 32 wins. Their first came against the British Isles in the inaugural final of 1900 and their last to date in Russia nine years ago.


Their most recent final showing resulted in a 5-0 thrashing by Sweden in 1997.


Spain will point to home advantage and the presence of two former world number ones in their ranks in the shape of Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya to underline their status as slight favourites - as well as the fact that, 'historically,' they only lose finals to Australia - in 1965, 1967 and 2003.


Indeed, while the Americans have the tradition it is Spain which has the better recent form when it comes to Davis Cup, as they approach their third final in five years. Last year they lost to the Australians in the trophy match.


The nations have met six times with the Americans coming off best on four occasions - but the Spanish wins were both on home clay, including a semi-final whitewash in Santander on the way to victory in 2000.


"We prefer faster courts," Mardy Fish admitted as the US squad arrived in southern Spain ready for their weekend duel.


The Americans, coached by Patrick McEnroe, beat Belarus in Charleston to reach the trophy match while Spain saw off France in Alicante on the east coast.


If the passionate Spanish fans were instrumental in pushing their team to the winners line four years ago, Jordi Arrese, one of Spanish team coach triumvirate, says that "we will have to be at our best to win this one."


World number two Roddick is clearly the key threat, warned Arrese.


"He'll be coming in really hot for this - and there's extra pressure on us as the hosts," Arrese said.


That pressure is only increased with Ferrero not having played since his October 20 early exit at the Madrid Masters Series event to Luis Horna of Peru, an exit hastened by ankle trouble.


This season has been a near-disaster for the 24-year-old who fought tooth and nail to get Spain to last year's Davis Cup final but who this season has been plagued by wrist, rib and back injuries.


"I've been training hard and I hope I'm back to where I need to be," said Ferrero, a star of the 2000 win, when wins over Lleyton Hewitt and Pat Rafter earned his compatriots the famous 'salad bowl'.


Much will depend on the extent to which Ferrero is ready to go the distance after six weeks out and to which the red dust will take the edge off the Roddick serve.





The 22-year-old Nebraskan is currently 6-0 for the season so far in Davis Cup recording two wins each against Austria, Sweden and Belarus.

But Arrese sees the doubles as the crucial rubber as Spain look to match the power of twins Bob and Mike Bryan with teen prodigy Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo.

"They (the Bryans) have played alongside each other their whole lives! What's more, they won Roland Garros this year and haven't dropped a set so far in the Davis Cup," said Arrese.

Roddick would not be drawn on the outcome, noting simply that: "Davis Cup is really special, it should be a great occasion."

"It's the final - and in the final anything can happen," was Moya's view.

========================
=========================
========================

CHAT ROOM: MARDY FISH, Tennis player


Mardy Fish will join Andy Roddick and the Bryan brothers -- Bob and Mike -- on the United States team that will face Spain in the Davis Cup World Group Final this weekend (Friday through Sunday) in Seville, Spain.

The Americans will be after a record 32nd Davis Cup title in the best-of-five match series on a clay court. ESPN and ESPN2 will broadcast all three days of the competition.

Fish, 22, a resident of Tampa, Fla., is No. 37 in the ATP singles rankings and won the silver medal in men's singles at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. A U.S. Davis Cup team member since 2002, Fish has a 4-4 career Davis Cup record (3-3 in singles). He won his first ATP Tour singles title last year in Stockholm, Sweden.

How do you feel about this Davis Cup Final? We're obviously extremely happy to be in the finals. We have Roddick, obviously one of the best players in the world, and the Bryan brothers, obviously one of the best teams in the world. We're confident. I think if you close your eyes and you say, "Who is the toughest Davis Cup match [to play] away?" I think it would most likely be Spain."

Why do you think Spain is the toughest test? I think they play great at home. [Juan Carlos] Ferrero hasn't been playing the way he normally plays this year. ... I think he forgets all about that. He plays well. [Carlos] Moya plays well. In my opinion, he's not playing as well as he could play, but obviously, I think he's one of the best players in the world. They throw that all out. ... I think it's definitely one of the toughest matchups for us that we can encounter.

What about the surface? We prefer faster courts than the slowest red clay court that they're going to put it on."

Does the selection of Seville over Madrid favor the Spanish more because of the lower altitude? Madrid would have been a little bit better for us because of the altitude; it makes the ball go a little bit faster. At Seville, it's going to go slower, which helps them. That's the beauty of Davis Cup. That's why it's going to be tough. We're going to bring it, though. We're going to try to play as well as we can."

How confident are you despite the conditions? We're confident in ourselves. We're confident with the way that we think we can play. We think that we can play with these guys. It's Davis Cup. We don't have to beat them in an entire tournament. We don't have to beat them five times. We have to beat them only, hopefully, one time. The fact that you've played extremely well in Davis Cup this year has to help. We're confident because Andy, and the Bryan brothers haven't even lost a set yet this year. We're extremely confident in that aspect. We're in the finals. You know, we couldn't have done any better.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
-- conference call

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 04:45 PM
Well everyone always likes pics :p

http://us.news1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/rids/20041130/i/r1958401965.jpg

http://us.news1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/rids/20041130/i/r1379102447.jpg

http://us.news1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/rids/20041130/i/r3347237828.jpg

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 05:08 PM
Rain in Spain Doesn't Dampen Spirits
It may have been raining outside in Seville today but it didn't dampen the mood of either the Spanish or American teams, as they appeared before the world's press.

The local media are already out in force, and Spanish newspaper Marca carried a hefty six pages on the tie - and it's only Tuesday. The visiting media are also starting to arrive, and all talk excitedly of a clash that will be big on atmosphere and tension.

Pre-draw press conferences, especially before a final, can often be nervy affairs, but both sets of players were relaxed and talkative. The Spanish do not appear to be unduly burdened by expectation ahead of this massive event, and say they are looking forward to playing in front of so many fans. Indeed, with 26,600 expected to pack into the Estadio Olimpico, it promises to be the biggest crowd ever to watch a sanctioned tennis match.

Carlos Moya in particular has reason to look forward to this final. He has been World No. 1 and won a Grand Slam title (1998 Roland Garros), but has never won a Davis Cup title. In 2000, when Spain won its only previous Davis Cup crown, Moya was suffering from a debilitating back injury, and wasn’t able to play.

Then last year in Melbourne in the final against Australia, he recorded a fantastic win against Mark Philippousssis in the second rubber. It looked as if he would play a decisive fifth rubber against Lleyton Hewitt, but Philippoussis managed to pull off a five-set win over Juan Carlos Ferrero to seal the Cup for Australia.

"After I won the Grand Slam and was No. 1, it [the Davis Cup] is the one that is missing," he said. "It would be a great feeling for me to win at home, and hopefully it's going to be this year."

The other members of the team all have strong motivation to perform well here. For Juan Carlos Ferrero, this year's final provides an opportunity to lay to rest the demons of last year's final, when he lost two five-set rubbers, to Lleyton Hewitt and Mark Philippoussis. Ferrero has also had a disappointing 2004, beset by injury and loss of form and confidence, but a Davis Cup title would go a long way towards salvaging something from a poor year.

Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo meanwhile are the rising stars of the Spanish camp, and have done well in singles and doubles in 2004, their first full year of Davis Cup action. Looking at them alongside their two more experienced colleagues, Moya and Ferrero, as they faced the press today one wouldn't have guessed that this is their first Davis Cup Final.

And should anything untoward happen to any of the nominated four players, Spain has Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco to call on. These two talented youngsters are here practising with the team, underlining the team spirit within the Spanish as a group of players, and also the strength in depth that they have at their disposal.

In the face of such an array of strength both on court and off it, one could forgive the Americans for feeling a little overawed or at least uneasy, but that certainly doesn't look to be the case. All the players said today they were looking forward to playing in front of such a big crowd, an experience Andy Roddick said would be 'humbling'.

And when it comes to team spirit, the visitors are not lacking in that area either. Much has been made of the idea that Roddick must win both his singles rubbers for the Amnericans to win the Cup, but neither Captain Patrick McEnroe, nor Roddick himself, buys that theory.

"I don't think about it in terms of what I have to do," says Roddick. "The team has to win three matches, and if I'm part of that then great, but if the team wins and I lose both my matches I'll still be happy."

While Spain have Lopez and Verdasco to call on in an emergency, USA have Vince Spadea. After his open letter to McEnroe stating his case for inclusion in the squad, Spadea has been invited here as a practice partner and possible substitute for Mardy Fish in the second singles spot. Although McEnroe still says he is leaning toward playing Fish, there is no doubt that the Americans see Spadea as part of their team, even if he isn't nominated, as they made sure he sat with them at the press conference today and got a piece of the photo opportunities.

The doubles selection for McEnroe is more straightforward than his second singles spot, with the Bryan brothers - fresh off their successful Tennis Masters Cup defence and undefeated in Davis Cup - certain to be named.

"From when we came on tour in 1998 our biggest goal was to make the Davis Cup team," said Bob today, "so we were so pleased when Patrick called us up this year.

"This is going to be the biggest match of our lives."

And that statement could equally apply to the six other players who will take to the court this weekend.

=======================
=======================

Pensive Andy lmfao

J. Corwin
11-30-2004, 05:22 PM
Again, too bad ESPN won't be showing the DC matches live. :( But then again, what did I expect? LOL :p

Hey, at least it's in the morning over here and I can get up and go straight to watchin it, without knowing the results beforehand. ;) :banana:

tangerine_dream
11-30-2004, 05:28 PM
How interesting that Vince Spadea is separated from the rest of the group by PMac. Wouldn't want Cousin Vinny to infect his star players with Vinny Disease. ;)

BTW, will Vinny play any of the singles? Or is he just there for backup? What's his role exactly? :scratch:

Poor Andy looks like he's got the weight of the world on his shoulders in that second pic. :hug:

Thanks for the good stuff as always, Deb. :smooch:

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 05:30 PM
Vinny was brought as the alternate, I guess. PMac has until Thursday right before the draw if he wants to replace Mardy with him. Regardless, whoever the 5th person is will basically just be a cheerleader. So he's there as that, and a practice partner and stuff like that. But once the draw is made, the team is 4 people come hell or high water (or injury:scared: )... like Mardy was at the tie you were at - just sort of there.

http://images.sportsline.com/u/ap/photos/MAD801113012_1024x768.jpg

snaillyyy
11-30-2004, 05:38 PM
Thanks Deb for the pics and articles :hug: :kiss:

Deboogle!.
11-30-2004, 05:40 PM
Well good, then, here's another:p
=======

US powered by twin engines

We could think Andy Roddick would be the key factor for U.S. success in the Davis Cup, but in this team event, it's the doubles that count -- a rule of thumb Spain has taken to heart. In preparation for their face-off versus the Americans, Spain's focus is on US doubles Mike and Bob Bryan.

"For me, the doubles will be the most difficult rubber," Spain coach Juan Avendańo said.

"On paper they [the Bryan bothers] are more experienced as a duo," he said.

The Bryans won all three of their 2004 Davis Cup doubles matches without losing a set. Spain's Rafael Nadal and Tommy Robredo, in contrast, could only muster one win in three 2004 ties.

The Bryans have certainly been a blessing for U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe. The twins practically guarantee the USA a point in Davis Cup play, a vital competition for the Americans and one that has left them in shambles since 1995, when the USA last lifted the Cup.

That year, Pete Sampras and Todd Martin beat Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Andrei Olhovskiy for the go-ahead point in a tight 3-2 doubles victory.

Since 1995, however, American doubles teams have been 7-13 -- until, of course, the Bryans came aboard.

One year ago the brothers saved the US from being relegated, bringing in a point in a crucial rubber against Slovakia.

High-spirited and "excited" to be in the US mix, the Bryans have had their brown eyes on the prize since the age of six, when they won first tournament they entered, a 10-and-under event in Westlake, California.

"We've been together 24-seven all our lives. We can basically read each other's mind," says Mike.

"Doubles is communication, and after thousands of matches together we communicate better than most teams. We are never going to give up on each other. He's not going to dump me, and I'm not going to dump him. Sometimes we go back to the room and box it out, too. That spices it up a little bit."

Bob says: "This feels great to have a day dedicated to you and doubles. Doubles doesn't get the spotlight. We're on TV maybe five times a year, and ESPN is a huge stage. We want to get out there and show some excitement."

It is difficult to remember an American entry with greater team spirit.

Although the Yankees are a long way from guzzling champagne from the historic Cup on December 5, at least this year they're finally true contenders.