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Henman Suffers Devastating First-Round Upset
by Neil E. Schlecht, Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Stumbling into the US Open with low expectations, Tim Henman, the No.12 seed and perennial Wimbledon also-ran, continued his summer slide with a listless first-round loss to unseeded Fernando Verdasco of Spain. Verdasco dominated the seed in three sets, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2, finishing with an ace, one of 10 he blasted in the match.

Henman was reduced to puttering about the court in Louis Armstrong Stadium, his crisis of confidence on full view. Verdasco, a steadily improving 21-year-old lefty from Madrid, may be newly shorn of his long locks, but he hasn't lost any of his power. He punished the Brit with a flat first serve and teased him with sharply dipping passing shots from his two-fisted backhand.

Verdasco, ranked No. 48 in the world, broke serve in the crucial 7th game of the first set after Henman blew two easy volleys. The Spaniard then raced to a 5-1 lead, taking the second set on the strength of back-to-back service breaks. Henman, one of the last serve and volleyers left in the game, still knifes his backhand volley and covers the net well, but he is hampered by a feeble serve that doesn't penetrate the court and win him any cheap points. Against Verdasco, he frequently softballed first serves in at around 100 mph, a delivery that wouldn't be remarkable on the junior circuit.

Though still ranked in the top 20, Henman appears to be past his prime at age 30. His 2005 summer of woe includes second-round defeats at Wimbledon, Roland Garros, and Cincinnati, and an opening-round exit at the Master's series in Montreal earlier this month. His adoring British fans, who for years have faithfully crowded Henman Hill at the Lawn Championships, finally seem to have given up hope of his returning the title to England. Earlier this year, many supporters were already jumping on the bandwagon of upstart Andrew Murray of Scotland.

Henman's style, when he is applying the chip and charge effectively, can be highly entertaining, even if he has long been derided for lacking charisma on-court. One British writer memorably called him "the human equivalent of beige." In the opening round of this year's US Open, he looked merely baffled.
 

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Henman needs to retire from tennis. That's an embarrising defeat for him. He will slide further and further down if he doesn't quit soon and will be forced to leave the game in shame. Go out on a good note Henaman. Go do something else and enjoy your family.
 

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mp3junkie said:
Henman needs to retire from tennis. That's an embarrising defeat for him. He will slide further and further down if he doesn't quit soon and will be forced to leave the game in shame. Go out on a good note Henaman. Go do something else and enjoy your family.
not really worth a reply that post, so what am i doing... :confused:
 

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Did anybody watch this match?
 

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yes and Verdasco played great tennis, very solid, of course the Best Henman is missing!
 

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Henman hasn't had good results lately. Hopefully he will set it up. Come on Tim!
 

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get your act together Timbo
and good luck Indoors
 

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/tennis/4199770.stm

Henman may quit next year - Lloyd

Injured Henman suffers early exit
Gamewatch: Henman v Verdasco
Former British number one John Lloyd believes Tim Henman may quit tennis next year if he fails to find his form.
Briton Henman, 30, slumped out of the US Open in the first round on Tuesday.

"I can't see Tim Henman as the sort of player who hangs around the tennis circuit ranked 30 or 40 in the world," Lloyd told BBC Radio Five Live.

"If by this time next year he's still hovering around that area and hasn't been a threat, then I have a feeling next year will be his last."

Henman was seeded 12th at Flushing Meadows this year but his appearance was short-lived as he was easily overcome by unseeded Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in straight sets.

I want to finish strongly so that I can go into the off-season, work hard and start afresh in 2006

Tim Henman
"I think he's almost looking forward to the end of the year because he's had a pretty awful year but a lot of it's been due to injuries - I don't think he's ever felt he's had a full chance this year," added Lloyd.

"I think he's going to go back this year, have a couple of months in November and December - hopefully where he'll train to the peak that he needs to be - and have a go next year.

Tuesday's defeat was the latest in a series of disappointing performances for Henman, who has seen his progress this year hindered by a persistent back problem.

He has failed to make it past the third round in any of this year's Grand Slam events and crashed out in the second round at Wimbledon before taking more than a month off to rest and get mentally refreshed.

But Henman remains confident he can end the season on a high note.

"I'll rest and make sure I get it right," said the current British number one. "This has been a difficult year but I've got five events between now and the end of the year.

If the injury is going to reduce his play to what we have seen recently, then I can't see Henman playing on beyond 2006



"I want to finish strongly so that I can go into the off-season, work hard and start afresh in 2006.

"I'll definitely rest now because that's what it needs because of the (back) inflammation, but I've got some time.

"I'll get it right because there's been a long period of time I haven't played my best tennis, but it hasn't been an issue.

"It is frustrating that it's been an issue for this event but I'll go back and get it under control and then I'll be able to concentrate on improving my game."

Henman's next scheduled tournament is the Thailand Open, which begins in Bangkok on 26 September.
 
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