Wrapping up the TMC (in a rain tarp!!
Saturday and Sunday
Well, we knew it might happen and it did – rain! I got to the stadium as Roger was walking off from his final hit before his Andy match. As we settled in for the first SF, the rain came. Having learned from the USO debacle, the crew pulled out a tarp. There were plenty of outdoor places to take shelter. So, we just watched it come down for a while. There was one false stop before the rain dissipated for good. We went right into the SFs followed by the doubles final between the Bryan brothers and Llodra/Santoro. Rainer looked so strong throughout the match. He’s come a loooong way from AO ’03. I thought he’d pull it out. But, once again, Andre came up with the goods. Roger completely dominated in his two set romp over Andy. He is such an artist and I was thrilled to be able to see his genius in person. The doubles final went down to the wire! Everytime it looked like Llodra/Santoro were going to put the Bryans away, they found new life. The Bryans broke to take the title in the fifth set. A good portion of the crowd stayed and it was a great way to end the doubles tournament. I got home to find that only one of thirty digital pictures came out very badly.
Come on, box camera!
Sunday’s final! Rain, rain, and more rain. I sat out a 1PM shower in my truck and then headed to the grounds. I was determined to find Bud for an autographed copy of his book and get a couple more pictures of the grounds. No Bud.
I did get more pictures of the grounds. They are posted on the photo thread.
I was happily surprised during Saturday and Sunday’s opening ceremonies. Legendary Country Hall of Famer and Grammy Award winner, Charlie Pride, sung the National Anthem! He must be a tennis fan because he stayed for all of the matches on both days. Everyone settled in for a thriller. But, Roger had other plans. The rain was a welcomed respite for Andre. I was able to take the rain delay time to complete my ESPN autograph trio. Patrick was standing outside of the booth talking with fans. He was very approachable and nice to the fans who wanted to chat and take pictures. One of the digitals I took of him actually came out!
The rain lasted forever (it seems). It really wasn’t as bad as it could have been. While the tarp was a good idea, I think it got ruined on Saturday. The crew was in leaf blower/towel city as the rain came and went. A lot of people had planes to catch and different reasons they couldn’t stay. But, the word came down that the match would be completed on Sunday. I settled in and quite a few people stayed. When play resumed, you know how the story ended. Andre wasn’t off or having a bad day. Roger was dialed in and hot, Hot, HOT!! I’m so happy for his unqualified victory this week. He was stupendous! Congratulations, Roger!
During the presentation ceremony, I got a taste of the Jim McIngvale most of the world has seen through the media’s eyes during the tournament. It’s not a pretty sight. But, I hung in there because I wanted to add my voice to those who cheered Roger’s success. I decided to hang out and buy souvenirs while everyone left. It didn’t take long. The grounds emptied out very quickly. I had a wonderful time. I enjoyed sharing my experience with you. Now, I have a decision to make. Will I go back in 2004? Hmmmm.
Tennis Fool, I'm ready for your questions and the quiz.