Down Under Day 2: God’s Gift to Women.


 

As soon as the OOP for Day 2 was out and Roger Federer was playing, the Day Session tickets for Rod Laver Arena sold out. In vain, my friend and I tried online, called the ticket centre, and visited the ticketek office, but there were no seats to spare for us pair of frazzlers. So we gave up the quest and got ourselves 2 ground passes, intending to catch a bit of Gulbis v Monaco. 

But fortune favours the persistent. Hoping for some last-minute pot luck, we decided to line up outside Rod Laver Arena with around 20 other desperate Federer fans for any late tickets in the reserved section. After almost an hour of waiting, a ticket office personnel informed us that some seats have been freed on the lower deck next to the media section, and we were welcomed to take them.

So we happily purchased an upgrade, and snuck into our rather magnificent seats at 3-all first set. Just in time to see Roger Federer lose the next 3 games and drop the set 4-6.

It took all the dignity and self-respect I had not to throw my shoe at him. 

 

 

For all his lack of temperament, Igor Andreev has a certain … Nadal in him. There’s the fact that in the 3 times they’ve played, Igor’s always been able to take at least a set off Roger, and has never appeared to be intimidated by the presence of God’s-Gift-to-Women. And then, there’s the forehand – unleashed with nuclear monstrosity and zero margin of error, pushing Federer well behind the baseline with sheer fearlessness.

Roger defended well throughout, but there can only be one result when the game is taken out of his hands and played on someone else’s terms: bald patches on Dootsie’s scalp. 

While the second set temporarily appeased my nerves, the third set turned out to be the Sharapova-infested dystopia I never signed up for when I walked through the gates of Melbourne Park. After going up an early break, Roger attempted to serve out the match but won only one point. Serving to stay in the set 5-5, he was broken again with a string of horrendous errors. 

Is there a worse sound in the world than a shanked forehand by one of your favourite players while your heart is pumping louder than Saturday night disco? At this point, everyone sitting around me was trying not to stare as I clutched onto my friend like a lunatic. 

Meanwhile, pissy Fed was pure sex.

 

 

If only Andreev was anything like Rafa. Serving for the set at 6-5, Igor had a total of 3 set points to go up 2 sets to 1 on Federer – 3 second serves on the same side of the court. All 3 of them wide to Federer’s backhand. All 3 of them chipped harmlessly back cross-court into Andreev’s hitting zone.

All 3 of them shanked down the line by Andreev. 

When Federer broke back that game and let out a roar that was mimicked around the arena, he also broke Andreev’s spirit. The tiebreak went in a flash, as Dootsie got up on her feet to give God’s-Gift-to-Women a standing ovation. Let’s all pretend that Roger saw it in his peripheral vision, and decided to reward me with a bagel. 

As for Igor: close, but no premium Cuban cigar for you, sir. 

 

 

It seems that the Australian Open is set on continuing to top itself with ludicrous scheduling. If Federer’s match was a full-house, then the night session featuring Hewitt and Molik was almost pathetic by RLA’s usual standards. It wasn’t that tickets weren’t sold, patrons just preferred to leave for the action on Margaret Court Arena, where Gasquet and Youzhny were putting on an orgasmically beautiful thriller. Not that I saw a second of it live, being stuck with good ol’ Rusty and Mollie.

But the Aussie patriots were out in full force last night, with Mexican waves, a few cheers that I recognised from my own high school days, and a rousing rendition of “Single Ladies”, complete with choreography

Bolstered by the crowd, Lletyon Hewitt was as much in “full flight” as he’ll ever be, pummeling some poor Brazilian qualifier back into the oblivion where he belonged.

But Molik faced more of a tussle from Julie Coin, going up a set and 5-2 before choking slightly and letting her opponent flip the match. All credits to Coin, who had vastly improved from when I first saw her back in 2008 against Ana Ivanovic. She became much more consistent along the baseline once she got into the second set, and showed some surprising deft touch at the net. 

Although Alicia will be disappointed with her loss, it was not a bad showing from her. She’s at least shown that she can play at a Top 100 level. But with an impending marriage and so much room to develop as a commentator and coach here in Australia, I just wonder if a comeback is worth the trouble.

And on that note, the rollercoaster ride that is Day 2 ended well past midnight into Day 3. Once again, I found myself crashing into bed, emotionally and physically exhausted, but completely gratified by the Federer scare and an evening of drunken Aussie camaderie. 

Just for now though, I could do without both for the rest of the tournament.

xx doots

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18 responses to “Down Under Day 2: God’s Gift to Women.”

  1. Warwick360 says :

    Too bad that Molik lost..:(….not the biggest fan of her but surely i wanted this Australian Open to be the tourny of the comebacks…

  2. girl from michigan says :

    You can’t see me Dootsiez (can you???), but I’m pressing my face up against my computer monitor and rubbing my cheek all over Fed’s pic. I am living vicariously through you, on center court. Thank you for the great posts.

  3. TopSpin says :

    That Reeshard-Mikail bust up going on on the other court was all sorts of awesome.

    Not always of the highest quality – but not too far from the Hewitt-Baggy marathon from two years ago.

    None of which compares to watching Federer getting ‘Igored’ live, I know.

    Can you hoist a Picket Fence banner up for your next matches – and I’ll try and look out for you

  4. Mia says :

    Missed out on lunch because everything would have gone back out given what Roger was putting me through. But something has to be said for persistence – Fed just playing within himself and letting the weight of the moment sink into Andreev.

    Sorry, Igor, (MaKiri) but love does not conquer everything.

  5. Jack says :

    Poor Gasquet!!! He seems to have a habit of losing epic 5 setters. I remember that one at Wimbledon against Murray – he really should have won that one.

    Anyway, didn’t see the Roger match (saved myself the heart attacks :)) but judging by the stats, it was a bit of a messy match. Main thing though its not how he won, but that he won!!

  6. Jodi says :

    I see your KMH reference there. Respect.

  7. flo says :

    God’s-Gift-to-Women is sorta an insult to his male fans – like somehow they are less worthy fans or less able to appreciate his skills. If it’s sexual, then may I suggest the LGBT section of tennis fandom which I’m so sure exists.

  8. Dippy says :

    It must have been a really hectic day 2. Am sure you must have enjoyed yourself at Roger’s match minus egg throwing urge during the 1st set. I hope you will be watching Roger’s next match and give us background report.

  9. PJ says :

    I do not know how you survived this one LIVE. I seriously do not. I was sneaking in live scores on twitter and random snippets of live-streaming with sound off and risking being fired and stuff…and I just about died about a bazillion times.

    Nevertheless, am glad you survived to blog about this. I don’t really know what to make out of this match except that I am ecstatic he survived, and I’m gonna get to see him tomorrow.🙂

    Oh and Hewitt/Some Guy was as interesting as cutting my nails. But Gasquet/Youzhny was about ten kinds of amazing. No idea about Molik/Coin as I had ditched😉

    • pban says :

      I was in the same state as PJ the only difference being that my mobile server was down so I could not get regular updates which was just as well since I would have had a cardiac arrest during the 3rd set. Watching a five setter live is torture but at least you can see what that idiot is doing , reading a live text is pure agony.

  10. Jack says :

    Singles Ladies?? With choreography?? Are you sure you weren’t watching Glee??😀

  11. LJ says :

    I watched rog on a fricking plasma inside rod laver arena cause I couldn’t get tickets. I was a total loon screaming clapping and tearing my hair out. All very amusing for my friend who is with me. But then 3-0 in the 4th some old lady took pity on me and gave me her ticket since she had to go to and appointment and I was clearly a distruaght federer fan. So I caught the end.

    I saw the entire gasquet misha match. Front row near the net. It was ridiculous. The crowd was insane. Drunkun heckling. Loud singing French. Ridiculous Mexican waves. Banging on the metal barriers. Very vey high atmosphere. And I was screaming myself hoarse for gasquet but by the end I thought misha played the better game. Richie needs to hug the baseline more and after watching the henin game. Henins backhand shits all over rishees

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