Well, one thing is for sure: Olivier Rochus was not invited to the party. The Belgian defeated El Mago by 6-4 and 6-4 to eliminate him in the semi-finals of the Heineken Open that is being played in Auckland, New Zealand. Happy birthday anyway, Guille!
"First of all, I want to thank you all for the messages and E-mails with greetings because of my birthday. The celebration was simple, with Carla, Perlas, my trainer and myself going to a restaurant at the Port. I wanted a win, but I won't having lost of the match to spoil my birthday", Guille said.
Then, he wrote about the match: "Rochus played like a top-ten player. When you face someone that connects as many winners as he did, you don't have many chances. I felt he was outplaying me all the time. The truth is that I've got my butt kicked. I guess I wouldn't have the chance to defeat him this time not even playing my best tennis".
Statistics don't lie. For Guille, it wasn't enough nor taking an early 2-0 lead on the first set neither having committed fewer unforced errors (22 against 23). The winners were the key to the outcome of the match, with Rochus scoring 34 against Guille's 18.
But El Mago was alright anyway: "If I look back at how I was twenty days ago, I can't complain. Against Rochus, it was hot, humid and I run all over the court, but ended up in pretty good shape. That is positive. So I feel fine, my tennis is improving and I am still finding my timing with my new service. I know there is still a lot of room for improvement, but I am on the right way".
What about the injury? "I felt my shoulder a little stiff, but that is because of the all the matches I played over the past ten days. Besides, these balls are heavier than usual, and sooner or later, the make you pay. But it is not serious. And I won't lie: I can use some extra days to rest and be ready for the Australian Open".
"Well, I have to go. I send you a big hug and, once again, I want to thank you all for your greetings".