Quotable Quotes: Innocent! I’m innocent yo!
“And you call yourself a blogger?”
Yes yes. I know. Almost two weeks have gone by without much action going on at Picket Fence, and this coming in the midst of a slam and the grass season. To put it simply, with Work 1, Work 2, Corps law exam, volunteering and travel planning all going on at the same time, Life is kinda kicking my ass right now.
It’s okay though: I’ll walk away with the winning H2H. You bet I will. *fistpump*
Personal rant aside, how are you all? I realise this is a little late, but some thoughts on the Roland Garros finalists for completeness sake:
Loyalty is a funny thing. I tend to think of my favourite players as ‘husbands’ and ‘flings’. Sharapova? Husband. Kuznetsova? Fling. Venus and Serena? Husbands. Carol and Vika? Flings. Tsonga? Hubby. Reeshie, Monfils and the rest of the Frenchies? All a bunch-a cheap flings yo!
It’s by the same logic that I found myself wishing Rafa success in the Roland Garros final through gritted teeth. As much as I like Sodercakes, he is a ‘fling’, and you gotta go with your hubby in a slam. Even if it ends your favourite player’s chance of remaining No 1. Even if it takes some serious lip biting. Even if it sucks So. Friggin. Much.
Mentioning husbands, thanks to sssssarah for passing this quote along.
Did [Nadal] have doubts himself?
“Sure, I had doots” he admitted, with one of his endearing ‘Rafa-isms’. “Everybody has doots.”
EXCUSE ME? HOW COULD YOU ACCUSE ME OF SUCH A THING, RAFAEL NADAL?!
Woger I’m innocent. I swear! He’s just a jealous old fling. You are my husband to end all husbands yo!
Haven’t got much to say on the actual men’s final itself, except that I wish Dimples had the same sort of gutsy energy he maintained against Federer in the quarterfinal.
But his path to the final followed a eerily familiar pattern as last year: 4-set upset of the tournament, snapping the World No 1’s record-breaking streak, unexpectedly grueling 5-set semifinal, and a relatively straightforward loss in the final. As Roger did in the 2009 Roland Garros final, Rafa exploited Dimple’s relative weaknesses and made them look so obvious that you wonder why no one else stopped him before then.
But of course, Soderling being Soderling, so much of it depended on his execution, his aggression and his initiative. We know he has it in him to upset either Roger or Rafa on any given day, but whether he can take 6 sets off those two in a single tournament is a whole other challenge.
The women’s final:
Seneca the Younger put it so succinctly once upon a time, “luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity“. Translated into the language of All I need is a picket fence, “HOLY SPAGHETTI, FRANCESCA SCHIAVONE WON A SLAM?”
Consider the context coming into this match: Sam was higher ranked. She led the H2H, having won their previous meetings easily in straight sets. Was she really going to lose to Schiavone after beating 3 former World No 1s in a row? After having the best clay season of her career? Australia got itself ready to explode off the edge of its couch: we were going to break a female slam drought stretching back the Gong back in the 70s.
Slams carry with them all that glory and folklore for a good reason – they’re bloody hard to win. And what Franny showed us all during the women’s final was that they require a little something more than a big game or fearsome weapons. There’s a little something else, call it inspiration, passion, heart … je ne sais quoi. It was something that I had hoped Sam Stosur had in her, despite the fact that she was coming into the match as the overwhelming favourite, because God knows that being the favourite on the WTA tour doesn’t count for much.
I hoped in vain. It was Franny who summoned her inner Head Bitch that day.
Just as Seneca had mused so many millennia ago, Schiavone sensed her opportunity, she came prepared, she fought fear with desire, she executed. Boy, did she execute – like a grand slam champ, rather than a player who’s spent most of her career in the top 40, but had never before been a contender.
As much as I wanted my country’s slam drought to be broken, I wasn’t sorry to see Franny win. Quite the opposite, I’ve never seen anyone deserve it more. I just wish it had gone 3 sets, not because I thought Sam would’ve had a better chance or that I wanted Franny to choke, but because the two sets we got featured some of the most refreshing tennis I’ve seen on the WTA tour. And as for the players, I couldn’t have asked for 2 better athletes to represent women’s tennis than Francesca Schiavone – with her infectious warmth – and Sam Stosur, her shy stoicism.
I wonder how we’ll look back on Roland Garros 2010 in 5 or 10 years. Will we see Francesca Schiavone as a one slam wonder? Will this be one of those freak wins that remains understated in the history books?
I think so.
But for those of us who watched Francesca collapse onto the ground with glee that day, we’ll remember the big heart this little lady showed to win one of the most prized titles in sport.
And that’s inspirational.