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Old 02-08-2008, 09:30 PM   #106
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

so it's all a joke... they can easily give out three wild cards!
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Old 02-09-2008, 07:38 AM   #107
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

Why do you say it's all a joke because of these couple of lines? We knew since the beginning there are 2 more WC to give, but it's not sure at all they'll give the last one to Santoro. They often give one to a local guy (Guez last year) or maybe a youngster...
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Old 02-09-2008, 11:06 AM   #108
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

well, the online voting does seem like a joke to me! and aren't they saying now that they make a special invitation to mika?? that is not a wild card, is it? (like, special exempt?)
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Old 02-09-2008, 11:55 AM   #109
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

No, "invitation" is the French word for "wild-card", he got the wild-card, Santoro didn't get it.
I don't know if the poll had any importance though, it was more or less 50-50 at the end. Maybe they felt legitimated that way to make the only fair decision (which was to give it to Mika).
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Old 02-09-2008, 10:54 PM   #110
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Default Re: Michael Llodra



well then it means they've given two wild cards to mario and mika, and there can't be a third one known as 'wild card'.

it's good that mika gets one.
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Old 02-22-2008, 08:01 AM   #111
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

Nice win yesterday, he served very well... Hope to see him in the final against Gillou, that would be a great week!
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:47 PM   #112
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

I'm so glad Mika is concentrating on singles.
I love his S/V game but rarely get to see him play.
Allez Mika for the SFs.
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Old 02-23-2008, 07:05 AM   #113
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

But he's not really focussing on singles, I don't know why everybody keeps saying that. He's still playing doubles and taking it very seriously too (because of the Davis Cup and the Olympics). Arnaud is injured, that's the only reason why they haven't played the last tournaments together.

An article about him today in L'Equipe:
Quote:
Llodra garde le cap
Vainqueur de Haase en deux tie-breaks, le Français reste fidèle à sa ligne de conduite. Mental et service font la différence.
MICHAËL LLODRA s’est qualifié hier pour les demi-finales de Rotterdam, mais là n’est pas l’essentiel. Bien davantage que sa victoire pourtant significative sur Robin Haase (7-6, 7-6), c’est son parcours depuis le 1er janvier qui suscite le haussement de sourcils. Douze matches gagnés sur quinze (voir l’infographie ci–contre), une constance dans l’attitude qui force le respect : le cliché du gaucher talentueux et fantasque semble avoir vécu. Jadis fameux pour ses coups d’éclat, le Français privilégie aujourd’hui la régularité. « La vérité, c’est que je n’ai pas besoin de surjouer pour gagner des matches, résume-t-il. Simplement parce que mon niveau moyen est très, très bon. »
Contre Haase, Llodra n’évolua ainsi jamais à son top. Émoussé par l’enchaînement des victoires et des tournois (il n’a bénéficié que de quatre jours de repos depuis son départ en Australie), il commence à tirer la langue. La fatigue est surtout nerveuse. « Tenir mon objectif, à savoir être concentré du premier au dernier point, exige beaucoup d’efforts, surtout avec mon style de jeu, explique-t-il. C’est dur, mais il faut admettre que j’en tire les bénéfices. »
Cette attitude ne fut jamais autant mise à contribution que face à Haase. Sous son profil de grand escogriffe (1,90 m, 71 kg), le Néerlandais cache bien son jeu. Il évolue dans un registre assez proche de celui d’Andy Murray. Pas très puissant, il ne cherche jamais à assommer l’adversaire. En revanche, sa lecture du jeu, son sens de l’anticipation, la précision de son déplacement et une excellente « main » font de lui un spécimen plutôt rare sur le circuit. Les Pays-Bas tiennent là un talent assez singulier.
Au-delà d’un service une nouvelle fois très performant (13 aces, 86 % de points gagnés derrière sa première balle), Llodra parvint aussi à faire la décision en suivant la ligne de conduite édictée par son coach : « Plus le score avance, plus “Mika” doit agresser et provoquer l’adversaire, affirme Olivier Malcor. Je n’arrête pas de le lui répéter. Parce que je sais d’expérience qu’un passing facile à tirer dans le premier jeu devient beaucoup plus compliqué à 5 partout dans le jeu décisif. Mika est un attaquant, il doit le rester en permanence. »
« Il avait oublié d’aller courir »
Le scénario du match lui donna raison. Un enchaînement retour-volée fit ainsi la décision dans le premier jeu décisif ; un ace et une magnifique volée annulèrent ses deux seules balles de break (à 3-2 dans le deuxième set) ; et son audace lui offrit le second tie-break. Née d’une longue et franche discussion sur un sofa, à Toronto, en août dernier, l’émergence du nouveau Llodra doit beaucoup à une prise de conscience. « Je lui ai dit que ça ne m’intéressait pas de coacher le Mika qu’on a connu pendant des années, se souvient Malcor. C’est-à-dire un mec qui travaille un mois et puis, qui se laisse aller. Je lui ai aussi assuré que, s’il décidait de se mettre au boulot avec l’intensité mentale nécessaire, moi, j’y croyais. » Les trois semaines passées cet hiver à travailler le physique portent aujourd’hui leur fruit.« Il avait oublié d’aller courir ! poursuit le coach. Là, il a repris les footings de trois quarts d’heure dans le bois, il a fait de l’intermittent sur la piste d’athlétisme... On a aussi beaucoup bossé la vitesse sur le terrain. Résultat, il a pris du muscle dans les cannes et il est beaucoup plus rapide sur les rallyes de fond de court. » « C’est vrai, rien ne me gave autant qu’un footing dans les bois, reconnaît Llodra. Y’a rien de ludique, ça me saoule, c’est l’enfer, mais je suis sûr d’avoir fait le bon choix. Il fallait que je me refasse une caisse. Du coup, j’ai plus confiance en moi. Aujourd’hui (hier), je me sentais un peu fatigué. Mais, dans la tête, j’y étais à cent pour cent. Et puis, quand on prend l’habitude de faire des efforts, du coup, tout vient plus naturellement. Désormais, j’essaye de perdre le moins d’influx possible. C’est aussi ce qui fait la force des bons joueurs. » Le voilà en demi-finales, face à Ivo Karlovic. Son duel avec le géant croate promet aujourd’hui d’épousseter les lignes du carré de service.
VINCENT COGNET
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Old 02-23-2008, 07:18 AM   #114
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

A rough summary:
12 wins in 15 matches since the beginning of the year: he belies his reputation of achieving a few glorious feats from time to time, but not being very consistent. The reason according to him: he doesn't need to "overdo" it in matches at the moment because his average level is very, very good.
Against Haase, he didn't play at his best. He's feeling tired because he's had only 4 days rest since the beginning of the Australian season. Especially mentally, it's tough to stick to his goal, which is to remain focussed from the first point to the very last one - but the efforts are paying off.
Some blabla about the fact that Haase is very talented and promising. Mika served very well yesterday (13 aces, 86% points won on his first serve) and did what his coach always tells him to do: to "provoke" his opponent and attack more and more during the matches. It's easy to make a passing-shot in the 1st game of a match, it's much tougher to do it at 5-5 in the TB, so Malcor.
In Toronto, they had a long discussion and Malcor told him he was not interested in coaching the "old Mika" anymore, that is a guy who works one month and then lets himself go. They spent 3 weeks working on his condition during the winter break and one can see the results now. Malcor says Mika had forgotten about very basic things like going jogging! So he forced him to do it. His legs are now much more muscular and he's much faster in the baseline rallies. Mika says it's true, he hates to go jogging, it's like hell for him, but it was obviously the right decision. He really needed to build up his condition and it now gives him a new confidence. Against Haase, he felt tired, but mentally, he was 100% there. And when you get used to make efforts, everything becomes much more easier.

It was about time to realize it can help to go running when you're a professional sportsman... ^^ Really, I can't believe it sometimes when I read interviews of French players!
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Old 02-23-2008, 02:43 PM   #115
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

Thanks for the article translation Truc.

I'm just glad he is playing singles even if his priority is doubles.

Allez for the finals Mika.
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Old 02-23-2008, 05:36 PM   #116
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

I didn't mean his priority is doubles, just that his priorities haven't really changed imo. When he parted ways with Santoro, he made it sound like he really wanted to focus on singles, but this time they've already said a few times with Arnaud that qualifiying for Beijing is a big goal for them this year.

Anyway, he played really well today and thanks for relieving us from Karlovic, Mika, that's always appreciated.
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Old 02-23-2008, 05:58 PM   #117
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

There is a short video about him in his hotel room on the website, btw (http://www.abnamrowtt.nl/centrecourttv/, Zaterdag, TennisPlaza 5). But it's not interesting. He says he's going to buy a house in Netherlands because he plays so well there.
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Old 02-23-2008, 11:21 PM   #118
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

Good luck Llodra for the finals!
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Old 02-23-2008, 11:58 PM   #119
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

Now he has as many titles and finals so far this year as the Top 5 combined!

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Old 02-24-2008, 11:41 AM   #120
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Default Re: Michael Llodra

A photo I took in Rotterdam:

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