Offseason Newsreel: Career 2.0
‘Tis the season to be jolly, as they say, and why wouldn’t you be?
In the lazy, frazzle-free haze of the offseason, familiar faces are resurfacing everywhere. You know what they say about absence and fond hearts?
How could I have missed the orgasmic effects of an Henin backhand without her 18-month ‘retirement’?
Who knew I had this much love for Nalbandian and his tummy full of foxiness?
And didn’t you have a smile on your face too when you saw Alicia Molik and Casey Dellacqua on court at the Australian Open wild card play-off? …Well didn’t cha?!
Oh yeth! Old friends are back, and they’re back in a winning fashion.
Making his first appearance since being sidelined with a hip injury 7 months ago. Nalbandian defeated Massu and Gaudio at the Copa San Juan Minero, conceding only 7 games in 4 sets.
Having only seen the match against Massu, what can I say? Nalby was much better than I thought he’d be.
Remarkably self-assured throughout the match, Bandy served big, foxed his way around court and absolutely crushed that forehand at every opportunity he got. In fact, I was surprised at how effective his forehand was during the match and how happily at ease he looked.
Now the thought of Nalbandian lurking in the Australian Open draw of some hapless top seed officially makes me want to stick my head into a barf-bag. But hey, good to have you back, you foxy ninja!
The woman’s on a roll! Justine Henin capped off her exho tour with a straight-sets win over Nadia Petrova in Cairo. It was her first match on clay since the painful loss to Dinara Safina 18 months ago. Good to see the bitch of Roland Garros back on home turf.
Henin now goes into the Australian circuit with 3 straight-sets wins under her belt, 2 of which over fringe top 10 players. And she says she doesn’t have high expectations for the Australian Open? Right.
Here’s to hoping for a good draw. Like Nalbandian, Henin is just a land mine waiting to feast on the limbs of a few top players.
The Australian Open wild card play-offs kicked off this week at Melbourne Park, as Casey Dellacqua and Alicia Molik both made their appearances in hope of boosting Aussie presence at our home slam.
Molik, who retired for a year due to lingering illness and injury, looked fresh and happy as she downed 18-year-old Jade Hopper 6-1 6-2. She was soon joined by her sometime doubles partner Casey Dellacqua, as Dellacqua defeated Olivia Rogowska 76(10) 60.
The score line speaks volumes for how Rogowska fell apart after losing the first set, but from what I saw, Casey was hitting the balls cleanly enough.
Regardless of form, ranking or potential, you won’t find two more down-to-earth, happy-go-lucky players on the WTA tour. Welcome back ladies. Our Fed Cup team will be made of win next year.
Also on the comeback trail, Carlos Moya will be playing an exhibition tournament in Buenos Aires as preparation for a January return to the ATP.
Moya was sidelined with osteoarthritis in a foot, and injuries to the tendon and bone of the right buttock.
I wonder how he injured his right buttock.