Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Andy Murray Speaks

Ben Rothenberg of the New York Times interviewed Andy Murray. Doping dominated the discussion. Some excerpts:

"I had a blood test on the Wednesday or Thursday before the tournament. I did one the Monday of the tournament starting, and I think they’re still blood testing the guys after the matches..."  

[Interesting.]

"If you look at the people who have cheated, to get away with it, you need to basically have a sophisticated sort of program, and travel with a doctor who is going to make sure that you’re not going to fail tests at certain times..."  

[I guess Murray forgot about Wayne Odesnik never testing positive for the HGH that he was carrying, or that the ITF's testing regime is a joke. Why would you need to travel with a doctor when the testing is so lax? And speaking of doctors what about Luis Garcia del Moral and TenisVal?]

"You know, the reason I trust tennis more than certain sports is because of how high the skill aspect of it is..."  
[Not this argument again? What about Major League Baseball?] 

"I don’t think we had a particularly good doping program before. It was pretty useless, I would say..."

[What? If the program was "useless," then his point above about needing a "sophisticated program" and having to "travel with a doctor" doesn't make much sense. Also, if he thought it was useless, why didn't he say anything about it until recently? Bizarre stuff.]

336 comments:

  1. I think he's speaking out of both sides of his mouth..... He's worried about doping, but he thinks everything is probably fine in tennis...........

    You absolutely don't need to physically travel with a doctor, and it's laughable that he talks about financial barriers. Tennis players are certainly rich enough to have a crooked MD, or any number of other knowledgeable criminals on their secret payroll (see: interview with Victor Conte).

    I cannot believe he trooped out the old "tennis is about skill, technique, feel, anticipation, shot selection, so PEDs are not really an issue" argument. There are lots of skilled juniors who fail: only a scant few rise to the top. Take 100 players who possess these innate "skills", and dope 10 of them, making them quicker, stronger, fitter, and able to recover faster, and then see what happens in the rankings.......

    He also states that being scrutinized "for 18 hours" at a slam somehow should reassure people that the sport is clean..... Really? Really?

    Finally, he says "I think there was not one positive test in the whole of the Tour de France, in cycling this year. I don't know whether it’s a good or a bad thing. But all I can say is that the top 50 players in the world now, they do the whereabouts form, we’re starting to get tested more and more."

    Drawing comfort from negative testing in cycling is about as low as you can go in the PED debate................I refuse to believe he is that naïve.

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    1. He's in CYA mode. At least he called the "old" method of doping controls "useless." But it seems to me he's saying that he still doesn't think doping is a big issue in tennis.

      I wish Rothenberg would have had harder follow-up questions. He just accepts what Murray says with little follow-up or examples.

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    2. The anti-doping Murray seems to be a post-Armstrong thing.

      Prior to the Lance Armstrong ban in late 2012, Murray hated doping control and was annoyed at how "in your face" the testing was. (See various articles linked to here: http://tennishasasteroidproblem.blogspot.com/2012/07/andy-murray-and-omerta.html

      Then, starting right after Armstrong's Oprah confession, he starts calling for additional tests. (http://www.onenewspage.co.uk/n/UK/74vpdbdnd/Murray-in-tennis-doping-test-call.htm)

      Next, Murray called for the names of the Fuentes player to be made public. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/tennis/21330805)

      I can't fault someone for admitting they were wrong. It is good to see Murray agreeing that the old system was useless. The ITF has yet to say what the new system is or announce exactly how many tests and for what it is testing for in 2013, so I can't say whether the "new" system is useless or not. However, 3 blood tests for Murray in 2013 is probably 3 more then he had in 2012, so that is a good start.

      As a note, the article does say, "This interview was edited and condensed," so I'll give Murray the benefit of the doubt that maybe some of his explanations were cut out or "condensed." Without seeing the original, you really can't parse his words too much. The general idea of the article is still conveyed, and that is what the author was trying to do. Maybe Murray elaborated more on needing a doctor or the "skill" factor, but it was just too boring for the average reader.

      All in all, it appears that there is some "new" system in place -- call it the biological passport, or whatever, but something is different in doping control these days. It is good to see players support this rather than complain about the "whereabouts" program.

      Unfortunately, I just can't really have any faith in a system being run by Stuart Miller. Until he proves otherwise, I don't think he is competent enough to run a viable anti-doping system. I mean, when you have a system that everyone now agrees is useless, you don't have the same guy make a new system. You fire him and bring in someone that knows what they are doing. But who knows, maybe Miller read this blog and got some ideas.

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    3. The "skill and technique" line from Murray is total bullshit. How many times after losing in big matches did Murray ever talk about the need to improve his forehand or volley or serve or whatever? Never. It was always "I need to get stronger and fitter." I've never heard Murray say he needed to get more technically proficient. Bigger, stronger, faster, more endurance. Bigger, stronger, faster, more endurance.

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    6. I think we can all agree here that skill is relative to what we have been seeing in the modern game, where fitness, power and endurance have become the prime parameters to dominate a game.

      Not to forget consistecy and accuracy; they are nice to have as well, but are more individual and skill-based, respectively mental - which gets harder to manipulate - though you could agrue that drugs that focus you or give you better concentration would play a role as well here. I mean Lisicki, despite all her German engineering powers ;) is a mental midget, so all her cracking serves don't help her much in the end, if an opponent begins to make her play and she gets a meltdown and cries.

      What we have been seeing in tennis is a game that has changed considerably due to many factors, yet where the scale is clearly leaning more towards the physical side rather than the incredible shotmaking and attacking game.

      We have been there and discussed this in numerous threads, so I think no need for me to rehash that. Also, the results and rankings do prove that trend as well. Add to that the viewers (some viewers) observations and it is fair to say that players who not only have good skills but foremostly outstanding fitness (endurance and power) have an edge over players who don't.

      I am also sick and tired of Murray's double talk where he constantly contradicts himself. Be a man! Name things, if you think there is doping!

      Afterall, it is he who undergoes a gruelling fitness tune-up's in Florida (see numerous articles on The Guardian) and not a remote skill-camp at Loch Ness!

      I don't think he thinks everything is fine in testing. He bloody knows it's not and instead serves us some lukewarm pr stuff, realizing he can't completely trash the programm.While accidenteally saying just that.

      I mean, just listen to what Nadal said after trashing Robredo last nite (I played the perfect 1st set, was aggressive from the beginning,no? after handing Robredo a bagle) or before ag. Kohli, where he stressed that it's about aggression (=testosteron).

      To me that is not really an argument for refined technical skills - but for dominance by all means. ALL means. You don't carve a ball on the T in a 5th set by skill alone. At that point, it's a about focus and power, breath. Being able to recuperate quickly between shots - after lengthy baseline rallies - how much oxygen can your bloodcells carry etc... Those are the decisive parameters when it comes to winning.

      Sure, you need to have above-average skills, no denying, Nadal can paint the lines and hit decent lobs etc pp - but his game mostly lives from his power, which gives him the edge.

      I just amused myself with the thought of imagining how Fed would play with the body of Nadal...

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    7. There is also more to consider. Imagine how much easier it would be to stay 'mentally strong' if you knew you were on the good stuff, that you will likely be able to comfortably last the distance and be able to get to almost any ball that comes back and continue to hit with near maximum power? Add to that a style of stroke with a large margin for error and you have a recipe for win. Nadal is given huge amounts of praise for his apparent mental strength, but if his performances have been greatly pharmaceutically enhanced I think that would contribute to it immensely.

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  2. He didn't say that skill prevents doping from being effective he said he trusts tennis MORE.

    And he's right.

    Tennis is cleaner than track or weightlifting. :)

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    1. That would be like saying the shit I took this morning wasn't as smelly as the shit I took yesterday. Neither smelt like roses I'll tell you that much.

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  3. Whats the latest on Serena Williams. Day by day she looks like a 800 pound male gorilla. All those PED has completely changed her physique. Of course, no other women players can stand upto her on court.
    I doubt she will live to see beyond 40 years.

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    1. That's 3 bagel sets in a row for the oldest women's #1 in history coming in the quarters and semis!

      Don't forget she shouldn't even be playing right now because it's still within 2 years of her panic room incident!

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    2. Saw the last few points of the Serena-Li match. Despicable behavior, not too surprising, must be all that bottled up roid rage. You just won the first set 6-0, and the last set 6-3, no need to scream around like this was some "battle."

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  4. The only gorilla in tennis is Nadal. Unbelievable levels of aggression and intensity in his match with Robredo. Makes Murray look like Mogadon Man.

    I note no question from the journalist or comment from Murray on Cilic, or Troicki too for that matter. Maybe Rothenburg tried and failed to elicit an answer. These cases must be the subject of some pretty interesting locker room conversation at the moment. Everyone in tennis is staying schtum, not just Cilic and the hapless, conniving ITF.

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    1. That's what I was wondering about as well.

      No mention of recent doping cases, no mention(s) of the Val tennis clinic or doping doctors who have been linked to doping yet have tennis players as either current or past clients.

      It's like it's not happening according to some of these journalists and players. maybe they're hoping that if they ignore it, it will go away. The ITF and the tennis establishment are very fond of sticking their fingers in their ears and pretending that they can't hear or understand you when you bring up doping in tennis.

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    2. Nadal is (literally) unreal. He reminds me of how Barry Bonds played baseball a dozen or so years ago: with total confidence that he will not fail. I watched 15 minutes or so yesterday and he was totally suffocating his countryman with the constant agression. Thanks to PEDs and the added power it gives him, he can play clayball on hard courts. F*** my life.

      P.S. Why oh why aren't commentators asking more frequently how a guy who suffers from a so-called degenerative knee condition can play so fast and hard all the time? Boggles the mind, time and again.

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    3. Because all commentators are blinded by his sheer brilliance and talent [/sarcasm off]
      TBH, I cannot understand it either, but it makes me sick to listen to ESPN-SouthAmerica's guys. A couple of them are former players and coaches, and even they keep quiet, or talk only to say "oh, mighty Rafa, he's so amazing, he trains so hard" and on, and on. Un-freaking-believable.

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    5. Pam Shriver interviewed Uncle Toni in the stands during Nadal's match last night. Without prompting, he brought up Nadal's knee problems. Correct me if I'm wrong but didn't he mention that Nadal's knees were still hurting?

      I understand his English isn't the greatest, but it wouldn't surprise me if yet again Nadal's team is slyly putting it out there that Nadal still has "knee problems" in case he doesn't win the title.

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    6. We will most likely be looking at 10+ titles for the year for the humble, injury ridden, Stefan Edberg Sportsmanship Awarded warrior.

      Doesn't that just sit in the throat.

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    7. We will most likely be looking at 10+ titles for the year for the humble, injury ridden, Stefan Edberg Sportsmanship Awarded warrior.

      Doesn't that just sit in the throat.

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    8. Don't tennis commentators have any integrity/pride at all? Most of them have been in the game for years. Both McEnroes, Cahill, Gilbert, Courier, Evert, Navratilova, Shriver, Fernandez... Are you telling me ANY which one of them doesn't suspect any foul play regarding Nadal, S. Williams and Ferrer (the three most obvious cases IMO), etc.? If not, why playing along? If/when this all blows out in the open how would/will they react? Will they be playing dumb or say "knew it, but could't say anything"?

      For those who follow cycling, how are the TV commentators in that sport? Did they turn on Armstrong? Do they address the issue of doping from time to time? I hope this conspiracy/omerta blows out in the open once and for all and like Alec and Seeya mentioned below, I agree that a whistleblower is necessary.

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    9. @ Picasso


      They would become absolute parias if they would ever dare to speak up. Too bad there is not a single recalcitrant element in tennis left with a backbone these days. Money and fame are a helluva drug.

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    10. Indeed. John McEnroe, for all his on-court antics back in his Tour playing days, has become quite the obsedient servant since. Tough as nails Connors is media shy (unless he has a book to peddle), rebel Agassi (lol) has nothing insightful to say, B(r)oom B(r)oom (closet) Becker regurgitates cliches, etc. Tennis commentators/former pros are as placid and unthreatening as they come.

      P.S. Roddick is probably independantly wealthy by now so he shouldn't be as timid as his predecessors (in theory). Hopefully he releases an interesting autobiography one day.

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    11. @ Picasso

      If I remember correctly, Becker had serious financial troubles in the late nineties - crashing his Mercedes Benz car dealership (filing for bankruptcy) and not to forget that costly divorce after the carpet-shagging incident. I bet he was happy when tennis (BBC) and some gambling/poker websites put him pack to work.

      He was working with that German doctor from Freiburg, Keul, who was recently revealed to be an early pioneer in doping/ cutting-edge doping research already in the early seventies, anabolics etc. Need I say more?

      I am sure he could write another tell-all book on that relationship, one I would actually consider to read.


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    12. Becker once openly accused Tomas Muster of doping and Muster went crazy and threatened to sue. Becker also straight up said that if he thought doping would help his game he would dope too. But this was all years ago, I don't know what he's said since then.

      McEnroe and Courier used to be pretty open about doping issues in tennis, now they tow the party line and/or rarely speak about it.

      Gilbert and Cahill both worked with Agassi (who has been linked with doping) and Gil Reyes (also heavily thought to be involved with doping). They're not going to say anything.

      Navratilova was widely thought to be on the juice during her playing days. I honestly can't recall hearing her mention anything about - or even caring about - doping in tennis.

      Fernandez is married to IMG agent Tony Godsick, no way she even broaches the topic of doping. She's way too deep in tennis management to be controversial.

      Evert used to be more critical as an analyst. But she got in trouble for being too critical of players at times and now I get the feeling she bites her tongue a lot. I guarantee you she thinks doping is a big problem in tennis but doesn't want to get the flack for saying it. Same with Mary Carillo.

      Shriver is the one who might be the one to speak out, she seems to be more outspoken then the others, but she doesn't want to jeopardize her job either.

      No one wants to rock the boat and/or lose access if they speak out. I think they all know, they just don't want to get involved. It's the bury-your-head-in-the-sand phenomenon.



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    13. Fair enough (thanks for the breakdown!).

      How about Mats Wilander? Didn't he openly criticize Federer eons ago (2005? 2006?)? Isn't he sort of a loose cannon? Would he be someone who could muster the courage and talk about the issue?

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    14. On one hand, I can see why commentators are wary.. I'm sure the network lawyers ensure they're strenuously warned against saying anything with even a hint of potential legal consequence. Accusations / insinuations without definitive evidence are fine for fans on the internet (especially when the facts make suspicions reasonable), but voicing those concerns must be riskier for 'acknowledged experts' speaking to large audiences. I'm sure they also fear the inevitable frenzied fan-backlash, if they even hint at suspicious aspects of a stars performance.

      On the other hand, some commentators are obviously just trying to hard not to bite the hand that feeds.

      If I were less cynical, I would say they are maybe trying to protect a sport they love, realizing that if the public grow to perceive tennis as a dirty sport, then a lot of innocent people (whose livelihoods depend on the sport), will suffer, as much as the cheat who remain .

      For me, though, what is disappointing is that independent wealthy retired stars, who could subtly direct the publics focus toward the less credible aspects of some players athleticism and performance, are not doing so.

      For what it's worth, Navratilova ripped into Armstrong after his Oprah appearance. I'm not sure what the 'statute of limitations' is on her samples (probably well-expired), but that stance would still be pretty brave, if she had any skeletons in the cupboard, or any potential whistle blowers in the mix.

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    15. I think people exaggarate Nadal's size. Murray makes him look small.

      Also, it's Serena, Nadal, Ferrer, Djokovic and Errani. :)

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  5. If you can read french, a funny incident happened to Sébastien Hinault, a french bicycle racer, during the antidoping test : http://www.ouest-france.fr/actu/actuDet_-Controle-antidopage.-Sebastien-Hinault-poursuivi-jusqu-a-l-ecole-de-son-fils_39382-2225789_actu.Htm

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  6. There is a massive tennis conspiracy going on that is about to be blown out of the water. I haven't hear a single commentator talk about the Troicki nor the Cilic case in fear of damaging the game of tennis. TV Ratings depend on this, $$ ad revenues do to, as well as everyone's salaries linked to the sport. We need a whistleblower and the loss of interest in the game by its fan to really make progress with the anti-doping effort.

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    1. I wonder about this too.

      What will happen if/when Cilic returns to the tour? How can they avoid talking about it? If he plays in the Australian Open will ESPN and other broadcasters make mention of it? How can they not - unless they're banking on people forgetting all about it. Same with Troicki if he wins his appeal and starts playing soon.

      I agree that we need a whistleblower. That's the only way any mass doping scandal will occur.

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  7. BALCO, 10 years later (the impact of PEDs on the sport landscape): http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=9635350&categoryid=2378529

    P.S. Haven't watched the video yet because I'm at work. Hopefully, there are some insights.

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    1. Interesting interview from a technical standpoint.... Not sure I trust this guy to be on the level nowadays, though.

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  8. Alright, here are my 5cts on Murray. (pt.1)

    So he states that players got blood-tested at the beginning of the tournament... That would be the phase where you actually would come in having completed your cycle succesfully during preparation, so you would not be "glowing" anyway. Once you survived the blood test - and I am sure the smart ones by now got the memo that ITF is bloodtesting for the profile - you could safely use again. You'd be gambling (hoping no test will happen in the next couple days) but still, you could. Also, let's not forget micro-dosing and masking agents.

    Murray says:
    "But look, all the players, we see each other on a daily basis. When we’re at a tournament like today, we’re at the tournament for 14 hours, at the courts. It’s not like we’re sort of sneaking off in the middle of the day."

    Remember Armstrong, he was done with his transfusion in less than half an hour, employing conveniently the metal coathangers from his hotelroom for his bloodbags. Maniac he was, he excelled in escaping unannounced doping controls during the tour (he got warned by one of his aides) - he still had enough time on hand to mask his doping before they came in and took the test. Daring! So time is available, it's not like all the players live in the same room being observed by cameras...

    Murray states:
    "You don’t see many tennis players, just because of how much it costs to travel with a doctor, you don’t see many of them traveling with one, for starters."
    Well Djokovic, for one, travels with his doctor, most prominently during slams. Why did Rothenburg not mention him? Or Robredo who lists Corretja on his website...and all the others who have close ties to certain MD's.

    But travel is not really the issue here. We know many who have or had ties to doctors with a shady past, Errani, Kirilenko, Ferrer, or previously Graf and Becker (=Dr. Keul) and I am sure every top 100 player has access to sports scientists/doctors, who specialize in performance analysis. I mean, srsly even juniors get that. Many doping practices, actually all, don't need particular skills (hehehe) as such - with the right instructions you can pretty much administer it by yourself (exhibit A: Armstrong's fridge / coathangers/ home-made roid-creme etc.pp). Or simply by google-educating themselves.

    Also, doping, if backed up by your national federation (who can recommend doctors, set up trainings camps and even support you financially with a hefty sum (exhibit B: Dominic Thiem, who could get 40,000 Euro p.a. from the ÖTV / or the Porsche sponsored programm that supports Kerber/Goerges/Petko/Barthel during their pre-season tune-ups) you don't necessarily need a personal physician travelling with you. Murray should knwo that.

    Further, Murray brings up this:
    "Guys like Sampras, Agassi, when they were 18 years old, they were winning finals of slams. You don’t see many guys breaking through out of the blue in tennis and being one of the best tennis players in the world because the skill element has to be so high, and it’s a sport you need to have learned from a very young age."



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    1. pt. 2

      Sure, you have to have the skills - already as a youngster. Same goes for football, where only the top players who excell in their age group get called for junior tournaments by their national federations - all this does not preclude players doping. They do it to get an edge over their fellow elite competitors. They do it, so they get selected over their competitors, or to win that all-important junior slam for a breakthrough.
      Doping is not about a sudden super increase in performance of otherwise unfit and crap players with shyte technique. No, it is about giving you an edge among the already top players from your peer group. Or a boost, when you feel exhausted and have a slump. Look at Djokovic, he has become an endurance monster, fixing his "breathing issues" (=code for doping) and suddenly wins tournies left and right. If that wold be due to doping and not to a change in diet, Murray's half-assed theory would crumble to dust... Not to mention Nadal's knee...

      THIS gem:
      "A lot of the guys in tennis who have failed tests, it’s been through just utter stupidity rather than actually taking anabolic steroids and stuff, and testosterone, and all of the things that you see in the other sports. It’s been through being stupid."

      Uh-huh. Stooopid stooohpid Troicki, Serena (insert ususal suspects).

      Notice Murray's usage of "and stuff" - whenever it would need precision and concreteness, he gets back to that phrase and does some pussyfooting. A good interviewer would ask what "stuff" he meant. And make him talk about that "stuff" - for let's not fool ourselves here, he knows more than he is willing to dish.
      In any case, methinks Rothenburg better take some steroids next time - to get his aggression going, he really has no teeth here, letting Murray getting off the hook on multiple occasions with contradictory or no answers.
      In general, I think simple questions, like what actually do you consider doping, give us a definition of doping, would be helpful for an interview. As an interviewer, you should draw on a concrete example, f.e. talk about Cilic/glucose levels. Or how exactly was Serena being stupid when the panic room episode happened? What do you mean by that?

      Where would you draw the line? How would you define "regeneration" - if roids help to fix your hamstring and keep your fitness level up, would that be doping if a doctor prescribes it to you? What do you think about oxygen tents/eggs and whatnots? Do you think the TUE rule can easily be abused? How do you feel about players popping pills on court? What vitamins do you take? Do you consider autologous blood doping cheating? How do you feel about accepting your own physical limits? How big of a temptation is it to not accept them? ... I find it frustrating to read these interviews, I assume Rothenburg was also not able to push harder - I mean, else Murray's PR team would not have authorized it.

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    2. Not to mention that Murray is a big Nadal fan: as big a fan you can be when you are a direct competitor. (Didn't he train in Spain for his formative years too?) I have heard him gush time and again about "Rafa" and I'm pretty confident it was quite sincere.

      Sometimes I think that Federer is somehow (indirectly) "guilty" of what has happened to the sport. His effortless domination from 2004-2006/7 could have accelerated the PED arms race and exponentially increased physicality of the sport in the last decade. Of course, we'll probably never know, but it's something worth theorizing over.

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    3. And then there is this Andy Murray interview (
      http://www.andymurray.com/news-and-blog/andys-latest-blog-the-new-york-times-2/):

      Q.
      I heard you just met Ben Stiller. What’s your favorite Ben Stiller movie?

      A.
      That’s tough. I like “Dodgeball.”

      Q.
      Why “Dodgeball”? Does it particularly appeal to you as a sportsman?

      A.
      [Laughs.] I don’t know, I mean him and Vince Vaughn. I don’t know, it’s just a classic movie. There’s not many other movies out there like that, I don’t think. I’ll say “Dodgeball,” yeah.


      Well, we all know that "Dodgeball" features a prominent role for Lance Armstrong in which Lance inspires Vince Vaughn to go back and win the tournament.



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    4. "I don’t know, I mean him and Vince Vaughn. I don’t know, it’s just a classic movie. There’s not many other movies out there like that, I don’t think. I’ll say “Dodgeball,” yeah."

      Murray is quite the eloquent fellow, lol. Dude needs speech enhancing drugs, stat.

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    5. "Notice Murray's usage of "and stuff" - whenever it would need precision and concreteness, he gets back to that phrase and does some pussyfooting. A good interviewer would ask what "stuff" he meant. And make him talk about that "stuff" - for let's not fool ourselves here, he knows more than he is willing to dish."

      There is no way you aren't on the autism spectrum.

      What are filler words? A good interviewer would know that "stuff" is Murray speak for "etc". Was he supposed to prattle off the entire banned substance list?

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    6. He uses "and stuff" in the sense of "etc." as a short cut in order to avoid specifity assuming the other already knows what else would come in that list.

      So again, it's a rhetoric strategy to avoid concreteness, for I, as a reader, would very much like to know how fluent Murray is in all things doping.

      As an interviewer, I would use that list a) to document how detailled Murray's knowledge actually is and b.) to come up with a follow-up question related to the substances in question.

      Yes, you may assume people know what he is talking about, however, given the touchy subject, it becomes an evasive strategy. And the interviewer let's him get away with it. Which I called out.

      Other than that, it represents a bad pattern of speech, like, "like".

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    7. We know from Lance Armstrong that these guys are pros at feinting ignorance of doping substances and methods. I remember a classic "Lance" press conference when he stared like a deer in the head lamps into the camera and said he didn't even know the drugs he was alleged to have taken saying one of them was "acto-someting" (referring to Actovegin -- which it was later proven that he was taking.) Classic Lance. Won't be any different for tennis. Tennis is just cycling minus 10 years.

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  10. Murray is 2 sets down and a break in the third. Incredible. We will pretty much see a Nole-Rafa final.

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  11. Sweet win of Stan. Great shots off his one-handed bh.

    Guess coach change did pay off. Murray did not even score ONE measly break. He seemed out of it and his 2nd serve was crap, as usual.

    All Fed fans can relax, the second fiddle emancipates himself and finally lives up to his moniker: Stan, THE MAN.




    I would love to see a Gasquet bh vs. Wawrinka bh final...

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    1. Who's the man--Stan Stan Stan!!! Yeah, for sure itz awesome to see Stan at least in the semis. It sucks that a lot more talented players don't get to shine in the limelight b/c they are overshadowed by the Nadal's or DJoker's. Gasquet vs. Stan final would be a thing of beauty to watch after being bombarded with Nadal vs. whoever this year.
      Don't know what was up with Murray though. He totally seemed out of it. This year seems to be revealing a lot that we don't know b/c it's all behind closed doors. For example, what's up with Tsonga??

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  12. Mistakenly posted this in the Cilic thread:

    I honestly cannot believe the ferocity in Nadal's game. How is it possible to scamper around the hardcourts on gimpy knees? Wasn't he supposed to slow down with age & injuries?

    He's flaunting it in everyone's faces. I do believe he took the layoff to get juiced up for Cinci/USO and WTF - 2 of which he's never won (1 left to go!)

    Any bets that next year will be pretty mediocre by his standards?

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    1. i'm betting his form dips after USO - then he'll cycle up again for 2014

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    2. Yup. The usual "Fall Nadal" is bound to show up after the US Open.

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    3. I'm not sure it will happen this year since he didn't have to prepare for the Australian Open.

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    4. the scary thing is Nadal could carry on like this for years like Lance did - long periods off to cycle down and then build up again for the slams. His body looks fine - I've never bought the knees story - it's just a cover for other things. His knees were supposedly chronically bad years ago yet here he is better then ever on the surface which is supposed to give him most trouble. Whole thing's a farce.

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    5. Didn't he also allegedly have a bad foot, way back in 2005? IIRC, his handlers even said at some point that the foot condition would prevent him to have a long career (LOL). I guess they "upgraded" to an all-encompassing knee excuse afterwards for added "credibility" and drama.

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  13. The takehome message I'm getting from this is that he is indirectly accusing Djoker (and probably Nadal) of sophisticated cheating. He was "sluggish" in his loss, and was tested beforehand with a blood test he probably knew was coming. Bottom line, he's pissed that he doesn't have as good a cheating program as the other guys, who were probably able to beat the blood tests, while he had to play clean.

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    Replies
    1. Nice to see you again here THASP. Hope all is well for you and yours these days...

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    2. Good to see you here THASP. I think you're right. All three of them are probably doing it but Nole and Rafa have it down to a science. Although I'm still suspicious of Nadal's absence last year. I'm not buying the knee. I can see him skipping the Olympics to be on the safe side but that alone doesn't explain 7 months off. Did he get busted? If he did did he's being pretty flagrant this year I must say. And Murray's mention of traveling with a doctor brings to mind that goateed doc who traveled with Nole in 2011 (the name escapes me) and sit in his box for every defeat of Nadal.

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    3. Strangely, he looked like the old, pre-US Open win, Murray all of a sudden.

      He did not create a SINGLE breakpoint against Wawrinka.

      Plus the excessive ranting and racquet abuse did come back as well.

      Wonder then what Nadal must be using when he can confidently pass bloodtests...


      Delete
    4. if he missed Roland Garros to cycle up for Wimbledon he may well have come off the juice after winning the title

      Delete
  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  15. 31 year old, Serena Williams loses 3 games in the process of beating Li Na (world # 5) in a GS semi ..........

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Best part were the last games of the 2nd set, when Li Na finally woke up and went all out. She should have done that earlier in the match...

      I especially liked when she made Serena run from one corner to the other to then attack/volley. It looked as serena was fianlly breathing heavily from having to move!
      Li Na won 13 out of 14 net points as opposed to 3 out of 4 in the abominable first set. Serena absolutely hates running and lengthy rallies. She also hates when she can't nail you at the baseline. She hates opponents who don't allow her to get in control and dictate the game to her.

      Li Na did some damage (as lies in her range of available means ag. that feisty Colossus of Compton) and I wish more players would use that recipe too. Serena looks like a cow on ice, her footwork is lazy for she can afford it with that strength and serve...

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    2. Serena is going to surpass Steffi Graf and Margaret Court at the rate she's going. It's ridiculous.

      Delete
    3. Off topic (sort of, if): it was a real treat, watching Game-Set-and-Mats [Eurosport] intro to the match, with Barbara Schett, Mats Wilander and Patrick Mouratouglou, whom Barbara introduced as "Serena's ... coach". Barbara's uneasiness was only eclipsed by Mats' inability to hide utter contempt. Never thought I'd ever have anything positive to say about this television programme...

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    4. @Melch

      Meanwhile, the blogosphere is mostly going crazy about a "double Come on" shout from the match by Serena...

      http://deadspin.com/dominant-serena-williams-unleashes-a-spectacular-double-1266316460?rev=1378507620

      Makes you want to bang your head on the wall. Tennis is being reduced to anecdotes and cute moments by the very press that should be critical (in an ideal world, I know...)

      On that subject, I am SO done with excessive emoting on court. It might be tied to higher testosterone levels in the women's game ...

      As for Wilander - he won't speak up ever, he needs that job to stay relevant. If he'd dare to ask qs about doping in one of his post-match interviews, he'd be replaced pronto. Schett is a truely annoying presence on Eurosport, and for the love of god, could someone make her go away? Her teeth seem to exist independent of her face...

      Off topic:

      Mouratouglo is throwing serious shade at Li Na's coach before the game. His smack talk is embarrassing, considering his own "record" of coaching:

      "“The connection with Justine [Henin] was clearly very, very strong, and it worked for a long time with lots of success,” Mouratoglou said. “Now if he’s capable of reproducing these kinds of results with another player, it will show, really show, that he is extremely competent. For the moment, in my view, he has not taken Li to a new level. It will come perhaps. Often you need time.

      “But for me in terms of results, her former coach Thomas Hogstedt did get her to a new level, and that’s what counts. Producing beautiful tennis, that’s good, but our job is to get players to win and to move into new spheres. I’m not saying Carlos and Li Na won’t do it. I say that we have to wait, but she is clearly a player who has the potential to win more Grand Slam tournaments.”

      What a pompous ass, really. What did he accomplish in comaprison to Carlos? He is a little dip shit. How annoying, yet, no doubt he and Serena make a splendid match!

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    5. @team_kickass: I have to admit the following: it took me some self-control not to mention her teeth - which I, to my own shame, regard the most exciting part of her... how shall I put it..., well, let's say, appeal. As concerns Wilander: of course, the same applies to any of them "blasts from the past" (McEnro et al) yapping away while some boys and girls out there are trying to do their best on the court (honestly or otherwise). And as for Mouratoglou: the reactions of the aforesaid clowns to his obnoxious presence say enough - which was the whole point of my previous comment. All in all, cheers, old boy, and do keep up with your insightful comments, they are amongst the most appreciated!

      Delete
    6. "it was a real treat, watching Game-Set-and-Mats [Eurosport] intro to the match, with Barbara Schett, Mats Wilander and Patrick Mouratouglou, whom Barbara introduced as "Serena's ... coach". Barbara's uneasiness was only eclipsed by Mats' inability to hide utter contempt. Never thought I'd ever have anything positive to say about this television programme..."

      Contempt for what exactly?

      Delete
  16. The oldest women's #1 in history has now won 12 sets while losing 16 games. That's an average score of 1 and 1/3 games per set for her opponent.

    And all that while winning 4 doubles matches with a partner older than her.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Serena will be well rested for Sunday now that she tanked her doubles match 6-4 6-2.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "She tanked" it? Is it, perhaps, possible, that she and her sis (for, doubles are, you see, played by two players), actually lost to a better pair? Yes? No? Whichever - explain (yourself).

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    2. Serena didn't tank anything. The Czechs outplayed them.

      Delete
  18. Mouratouglu's comment that Serena has "mutated" is spot on. We have a man in the women's final.

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  19. IMHO, multiple 'c'mon' shrieks have absolutely no place in a 6-0 6-3 drubbing.

    I'm with Team_kickass: The currently pervasive, tactical, TV-friendly, 'c'mon' howls are beyond irritating.

    I don't recall the game's true greats ever needing to stoop that low (except perhaps for Jimmy Connors, lol).

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  20. In all honesty though women tennis is in horrible shape. It's not like Serena is playing at an unbelievable level, she's far from it at this open. She was at that level in the French Open but not at this one. She's not serving bombs often and seems vulnerable from the baseline as well. But there is no one, really no one half decent anymore to cause her problems. Suarez Navarro looked like an amateur and not a pro out there and Na Li played awful for a set and a half. No champions out there anymore. I've seen better matches at club level that what we are seeing lately in the latest stages of the slams.
    That doesn't mean that Serena is not on the juice of course, we know she is big time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have to agree with everything you wrote. It pains me to say it because I have been a long-time fan of women's tennis. I started watching women's tennis before I started paying attention to men's tennis.

      Women's tennis is in the worst shape it's been in a long time.Tthere are far too many mental midgets and brainless ballbashers out there who can't keep a ball in play for longer than 3 strokes. Radwanska, Sloane Stephens, and Laura Robson are the only female players I have any rooting interest towards.

      I have zero interest in the women's final - Azarenka's shrieking makes me want to take a hammer to her face and the less said about the roid rager Serena the better.

      Delete
    2. Agreed with all of it.
      The current generation of women's players is weak. Serena is not playing unbelievable but still wins easily most of the time. Hell, if she's on roids, she could probably even win most of the time PED-free! Considering she has never been super-creative or even super-fast on court, that's kinda sad...
      Around 2000 the WTA was more interesting imo, with more players who could win (Hingis, Davenport, Williams, Henin, Clijsters, Mauresmo, Capriati, some Russians). Some or all of them were probably using PEDs, but at least it was competitive. Nowadays there are too many who don't know anything else besides baseline-bashing and have zero creativity in their play, plus dubious mental agility.
      Nowadays Radwanska is interesting to watch, Li Na, Schiavone, Suarez, Date-Krumme (nostalgia there :), that's pretty much it.

      Delete
  21. Hmm.

    Are we going to see a miracle?

    Stan up 4:1 - Djoker double-faulting when it mattered... Also the speed of his serve looks below par.


    Also Stan's forehand is doing the damage mostly, like ag. Murray.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Djokovic is looking a bit sluggish, or he's playing possum. Did he also get tested like murray beforehand? Maybe he's doing without the juice.

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    2. I think Djokovic is trying to save himself for the final. If he gets there he has to up his level considerably to trouble Nadal.

      Delete
    3. Wow, Stan the man has taken the third set! It could have been a straight set drubbing if he had won the 2nd. No matter what happens next, Nadal will be a happy man. Wawrinka with his i handed backhand can't beat him and if Djoko makes a comeback to win this he will be tired for the final.

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    4. Unfortunately, u can't count DJoke out in any match b/c he like Nadal or Ferrer or even Murray get better as the match goes on. It almost looks like they enjoy wearing out their opponents by lengthening matches if the opponent comes out super strong in the beginning like Stan has. As good as Stan's played today besides his serving, he injured his inner thigh & probably won't win. Djoke will have plenty left in tank to play Nadal b/c itz Monday final & these guys even though they look tired don't ever tire with their "energy regimens". That being said--Go Stan!!! Itz not over till itz over!!

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    5. Well now, isn't this another picture-perfect example for why PEDs could make the difference in a match, no? Once he lost that 2nd set, we knew what was bound to happen.

      Now with a break up in the 5th, Djokovic is still fit while Stan, well, is not so. His inner thigh injury as a result of the constant onslaught from Novak and I doubt Stan is able to pull a Robredo here, who managed to play with one leg basically in his match ag. Kohli...

      Delete
    6. I agree. The margins in pro matches are so slim: fitness was key in this match.... Wawrenka got weaker as the match went on, while Djokovic got better over each of the 4 hours that the match went on.........

      Delete
  22. I want to address the subject of doping and "skill". If you win, you get to play another match. You get more support from parents and sponsors. And then you get money from winning. My point is that someone who dopes and wins because of it will get better in tennis because he will play more and have more money to travel and play more.
    Enjoying playing more gets you better at tennis. Winning is enjoyable. Winning brings you more training and more experience.
    Nobody wants to stand alone with a ball machine for any length of time.
    Yeah, Venus is skilled and has tons of experience. That does not mean that she has never doped.
    I have seen a Junior cheat on an important point, win, and the next year have become actually a better player and not have to cheat on points as much.
    There is not endless time and money to become and stay a great player.
    I don't want to hear the skill argument ever again.

    ReplyDelete
  23. 'Q. Have you heard from Roger at all yet? That marathon game, did that just take too much out of you? Do you think that ultimately you didn't have any energy after...

    STANISLAS WAWRINKA: I didn't check my message, but I don't have to answer that question. For sure he text me because he's the first happy for me when I play well. So he's the first to text me before the match and after the match (smiling).
    But that game, I was already quite tired. I was already quite dead physically. I was just trying to stay with him and to fight and to give everything that I had in my body.
    But was tough, tough fifth set for sure.'

    Says it all.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Nadal will obviously win this match, but at least to me he looks like a shell of the player he's been. He's not even remotely overpowering Gasquet. His serve looks weak. Still looks fast and doesn't look tired at all but doesn't seem to have his "power."

    Agree....disagree?

    ReplyDelete
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    2. Disagree. The man is keeping his foot off the pedal- except for the moments where he really needs it, say like after a 20+ stroke rally at the beginning of the third. No signs of tiredness, no signs of knee problems, except for that constant constipated look.

      A travesty. Who wants to watch this? And the Eurosport commentators who keep incensing him. Probably blind.

      Delete
    3. I think the ITF told him to not act suspicious and make that match look remotely competitive for the audience, no? Folks forked up some bucks for that, so they want some show giving the impression gasquet might have a slight chance.

      Also, he clearly conserves his energy for Monday - this is just some training session for him.

      As for overpowering Gasquet... like Wawrinka, he is human and the previous matches (TWO 5setters!) take its toll naturally. So no need to step on it.

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    4. Disagree. The guy destroyed every oponent along the way without breaking a sweat. For me it was enough to watch a few game yesterday. Nadal is a monster, full of self confidence. Some of his shots have a power (and let's not forget the rotation which is impossible to spot unless you're at the receiving end).
      I agree he doesn't play 100% most of the time, so it doesn't become obvious he's superhuman, but I don't see why the ITF would be involved with it. It's basic intelligence of the player and his coach.
      I don't see how even (a doped) Djokovic could pose a serious threat. Will the Djoker have the guts to quote Wawrinka and say "he's f.....g strong", or will he just congratulate Nadal's team, remains to be seen.

      Delete

  25. I think now I want Hoffa's syndrome as well - if it would mean that your knees come out even stronger after battling with it...

    Incredible, no?

    The ITF needs to be obligated to install an independent committee that should be devoted solely to double checking injury explanations/TUE's for bollocks, preposterous nonsense and unmitigated bullshitting!

    Nadal's knee story would be their highest priority...

    The definition of bullshit is saying things not as they are but as one would like them to be seen. So Nadal's knee story has never been about the truth, a sore knee, we knew that much, but about what suits him to say, creating his own little reality independent of truth.

    Footnote: Glad Madrid did not get the bid for the 2020 Olympics despite Nadal's pull as an official ambassador.
    The IOC, the world's biggest Mafia organisation imo, had to chose between Tokyo with the radiation-scare, a doping-infested (Fuentes!) Madrid/Spain and Turkey/Istanbul with a questionable human rights record after Taksim.

    Stuck between a rock and a hard place, they made the right decision. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why would the ITF do that? They're in business to make money. Having one of their top players exposed as a doper would be counterintuitive. So instead thy have him take a long break every year or two and let some of the other guys collect a little hardware just to shut everyone up. I'm sure after RN wins his second US Open trophy tomorrow he'll go away for another 5 or 6 months saying he has played too much this year and the knees are are not good. All that hard court play was not a wise decision for the knees, blah blah blah.

      Delete
    2. Oh actually I forgot, he wants to get back to no.1 so he may be around a little longer. Just long enough to end the year at no.1 and totally humiliate Djokovic.

      Delete
    3. The end-of-the-year tournament and the Miami tournament are the only big tournaments he has yet to win. I'm sure those are on Nadal's checklist next. I think he'll try and win the year-end-tournament this year and try for Miami next year.

      The ITF has zero interest in cleaning up the sport. Unless an independent organization takes over the drug testing, we'll see more cover-ups and more big players taking long "vacations."

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    5. Oh, I was being ironic with that committee, soz if it did not translate. I have not the slightest doubt that this would be the last thing on their mind.

      What I meant is, that there is no independent institution to check for apparent bullshit TUE's and weird off-time explanations or to name the latest example: needle-phobia claims...

      I know it won't ever happen for the ITF lives in its own comfortable bubble. I am just fed up with the level of bullshit they present me with.

      Delete
    6. The ITF is not immune to the right kind of pressure. Things are already changing to some extent, in part due to this site, and in part due to drug scandals in other sports, especially Mr Armstrongs activities. When a cancer-surviving national hero turns out to be a lying cheat, people find it harder to blindly trust their sports heroes.

      Every cent in tennis comes from the fans, either directly or indirectly. From tournament ticket sales to sponsors + TV networks signing checks because they know sport is popular....... When a sufficient fraction of the fans lose confidence in the integrity of the sport, the authorities will make the pragmatic choice to clamp down hard on the cheats, realizing that long term gain wins over short term pain.

      However, as long as fans keep their heads in the sand, or think doping is not a bad thing, we will have to suffer the current status quo.

      Delete
  26. Meanwhile in MMA: http://www.mmajunkie.com/news/2013/09/hendricks-camp-reps-for-ufc-champ-st-pierre-refused-nsacs-wada-testing

    ReplyDelete
  27. This says it all, from Djokovic:

    ““Wawrinka was a better player for most of the match, because he was aggressive and played better (...) I just tried to hang on and fight and believe all the way through I can actually win, and I sincerely believe that as the match progresses and the longer it goes, I felt I have maybe that physical edge over him.”


    Wawrinka could have prevented this war of attrition, if only he had held on to his lead when serving in the second set at 4:3 at 15:40... or had broken Djokovic for the second time in that previous service game.
    Djoker levelled for 4-all and Stan got caught in an ill-fated tie breaker. Which he lost thanks to an unfortunate double fault. Losing that set cost him dearly, physically. He was unable to make up for that loss despite having the better game. Djokovic simply out-waited him knowing he could relie on his superior physique and fitness.

    If fitness becomes so decisive to determine the outcome of a match, how can Miller claim doping is irrelevant in tennis? More so, fitness being the key, doping control needs to step up and meet that superior level as well.

    Again, players can only exploit fitness when on the other end their federation is not really testing them strictly, instead acts as an enabler of attrition wars by calmly looking on to those superhuman performances.

    To me, I can only repeat myself, those are truely sick spectacles that have little to do with a fair game.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This post cannot be quoted enough. This is the current state of tennis (at the top) in a nutshell. Sickening.

      Delete
    2. It is a truly sad state of affairs when the 'better tennis player' loses, and on a fairly regular basis too. Sometimes it is a blatant standout moment like Canas coming back onto tour after a drugs bust, taking down Federer twice in a row in 2007 with insane retrieving and athleticism, reaching rank 15 by year end only to fade into absolute nothingness over the following two years. Now, however, it is the paradigm, and is obfuscated by frequency and scale within the tour. People now expect this to happen, and do so with open arms. Tragic is the word.

      Even still, the whole Canas thing was swept under the carpet too as we well know. No one speaks about it, other than perhaps recalling Federer's streaks and how that particular one was ended by a 'great performance from Canas'.

      Delete
    3. Don't forget Filippo Volandri who, out of nowhere, also beat Federer in 2007 (when Federer was damn near invincible). Turns out he failed a drug test a couple years later for his use of "asthma" curing drugs. The whole thing is a circus.

      On one hand, the ITF (allegedly) protects Nadal, but on the other, it becomes a great injustice for the biggest star the sport has known, i.e. Federer.

      Delete
    4. Excellent post.

      I have no idea if Wawrinka is juiced or not, but he was visibly tired and struggling by the fifth set. He was cramping and looked to be in serious pain in his press conference.

      Djokovic on the other hand looked like he could play 5 more sets.

      If Wawrinka isn't doping already he will probably start now. Sadly, that's the only way he'll be able to beat a Nadal or a Djokovic.

      Delete
  28. Interesting. In the Cilic (updated) post, I provided a link to a website article that dared to suggested that Nadal tested positive in 2006 but his results were covered up. The article was also posted on Tennis Warehouse but the mods deleted it swiftly; so no surprises there.

    However, today I visited the website and I discovered that the article has been deleted. Nadal's PR team sure move fast.They must be lurking over here because that's what I call damage control.

    http://www.elojodigital.com/contenido/8190-rafael-nadal-el-dopaje-y-nike

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sometimes wondering about this site too. I mean, I am sure they check here frequently since their "client" gets name-dropped a lot - for all the right reasons.

      There is hardly a forum that allows the expression of doubts and legitimate indicators for doping. This site is powerful for those very reasons: it brings together facts, observation and interpretation of the current state of tennis.

      I do think there is a silent majority who is without means to get heard.

      Azarenka vs. Williams is just another example of the wrong people being in a final - the only female player I truely enjoy to watch is Radwanska...

      Delete
    2. How can anyone consider Azarenka a sure thing doper?

      Delete
  29. This video from the WSJ features some guy measuring players biceps to see if the dominant arm is really bigger. Most played along, but Isner and Wozniaki refused......

    Somehow he missed Rafa and Serena, but I'm pretty sure I know what they would have told him LOL.....

    http://live.wsj.com/video/the-biceps-of-the-2013-us-open/1812CD23-B997-4114-83FE-47567C45179C.html#!1812CD23-B997-4114-83FE-47567C45179C

    ReplyDelete
  30. THASP regulars can seize the moment by posting comments to US Open stories today and tomorrow on mainstream and not-quite-mainstream media websites. Be brief, point out inconsistencies, add quotes and the link to this site, and maybe highlight a couple of our comments (like the above few).

    If those articles regularly get a half dozen or so THASP links, eventually some reporters will take notice. I hope.

    ReplyDelete
  31. I watched the USO men's doubles final today. It was a one sided game so I watched the highlights of the semi finals between Paes-Stepanek and the Bryan brothers. What an entertaining match! Doubles is still about tactics, technique, volleying and creativity. And teamwork and having fun on the court. During the finals, commentator Luke Jensen mentioned that since the majority of people who play tennis in the US play doubles, it should be given more respect and the prize money should be the same as in singles. I know it won't happen but while we are sad about the state of tennis when watching singles, doubles gives us a rest from the gloom and takes us back to an era when tennis was fun.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Peya was injured unfortunately.

      I truely enjoy watching Stepanek in general and in combination with Paes even more. What a delight!

      ( I know this makes me sound like some sentimentalist harping on about the good ole' days - but,believe it or not, I am not, really, I just truely enjoy tennis that is about tennis and not about finding out who breaks down first after lengthy rallies. Or who can play the longest with muscle pain...or who hits harder...

      Delete
    2. It was so strange to see a player who was genuinely injured. I guess I had become numbed by all these suspect MTOs, where the players grimace and hobble between points and then sprint like startled gazelles, as soon as the point starts.

      Delete
  32. Singles Grand Slam titles

    Margaret Court: 24
    Steffi Graf: 22
    Helen Wills Moody: 19
    Martina Navratilova: 18
    Chris Evert: 18
    Serena Williams: 17

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    Replies
    1. Both Serena and Nadal are determined to break the record for most GS titles. I expect many more "unbelievable" performances interspersed with "injuries" from both of them.

      Delete
    2. I think Serena should try to win all 12 slam titles (singles, women's doubles + mixed doubles) next year. I don't think anybody has ever managed to pull off this feat and the sad thing is, she actually stands a realistic chance of doing it. She's so dominant in the women's game that basically only a shocker of a performance (e.g. this year's Wimbledon where Serena lost from 4-2 up in the final set) can kick her out of singles. In the mixed events, most matches come down to which woman can hold serve. I think Serena could partner up with almost anybody and win all 4 titles. The big question mark is Venus Williams' health and level of play. If she can stay healthy and play at a decent level throughout the year, they will be hard to stop...

      Women's tennis is already a big joke. Why not wallow in it then?

      Delete
    3. Just think, if Nadal wins today he'll only be one Slam win behind Sampras and only four behind Federer. He's a lock to win the French until he retires and he's been mindboggling on hardcourts all year. Nadal will probably tie or pass Sampras next year and probably tie or pass Federer in either 2015 or 2016.

      At the rate Serena's going and the utter joke/mess that women's tennis is, I fully expect her to pass or tie Graf in 2015, and pass Court either the same year or 2016. Who the hell is going to stop her? Serena will be 32 later this year. In 2014-2016 she'll be in her mid-30s and probably still be the most dominant player in the game and none of the sheep will question it.

      I saw someone on Twitter say that women's tennis in 2013 was it's best year ever and of "high quality." I almost tweeted to her that she needs to lay off the mind-altering drugs but I bit my tongue. Anyone who thinks the current state of women's tennis is "high quality" needs to lay off the illegal drug taking. Not that men's tennis is much better, though.

      So three-four years from now, barring some miraculous changes in the doping system or more "injuries" from Nadal and Serena - two of the biggest injury fakers on either tour - tennis is (more likely than not) going to have two roided-up mega-juicers in Nadal and Serena as their Grand Slam leaders.



      Delete
  33. Yes and John McEnroe declared Serena the goat. What an idiot.

    oh and BTW Serena served 126 today. That's faster than Federer served in his first match at the USO and the same as his fastest serve in his match against Berlocq. Please tell me she's really a woman. I'm not convinced.

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    1. You actually watched the match? My sympathies for any ear bleeding you might be suffering. Arguably the two most unappealing women's tennis finalists in recent memory.

      Thank God NFL football was on all day and I switched back and forth between the Green Bay-San Fran game and the STL Rams-Arizona Cardinals game (both riveting and excellent by the way).

      McEnroe has morphed nicely into the biggest hack in tennis. A few days ago he called Nadal both the "Leonardo da Vinci" and "Albert Einstein" of tennis. It's long past due for Johnny Mac to hang up his microphone (not that the other commentators are much better).

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    3. @Eric Ed

      Flojo, Marion Jones, Veronica Campbell-Brown.

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    4. John McEnroe needs to lay off the drugs that he's taking. The guy has become completely unwatchable. I just watched some old highlight videos of Serena from the 1999 season on Youtube and she used to be build like her sister Venus. Serena has got to be one of the most obvious dopers I have ever seen and it's horrible that she's getting away with her blatant juicing.

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    5. @Seeya yes sadly I watched most of the match but I ended up muting it for the most part because John McEnroe was making me physically ill. I need to watch these displays in order to form an educated opinion. If I don't watch how can I be sure there's doping going on? Furthermore I'm sure Serena tanked that second set to make it less obvious but anyone who knows anything about PED's should be suspicious of that one.

      Delete
    6. @Lopi:

      You make great points. You're a better person than I am. I probably should be watching for the reasons you state, but I don't want to give them the ratings. I will try and catch it if someone puts it up on You Tube or something like that. Hopefully it will be a feed that doesn't have the McEnroe commentary.

      I recently rewatched the full Nadal-Djokovic U.S. Open final matches from 2010 and 2011. The differences in Djokovic from 2010 to 2011 is striking and 2010 - of course - was Nadal at his doping high. It will be interesting to see what today's final will be like.

      Delete
    7. Since when Serena had the same physics? Venus is built thin like her father. Serena ia built like her mother. Thus the difference between their height, legs, tighs, breasts, etc. Check pictures of fat serena online and notice how pictures of fat Venus are nowhere to be seen.
      Richard, these three black women were going to win regardless. The physical demands of sprint made them dope, to be able to win consistently. Veronica didn't dope at the Olympics but she still won. Sometimes they do need to dope in order to be able to participate to multiple competitions. But doping didn't turn them into athletic freaks

      Delete
    8. Why would anyone dope if they didn't think they needed it to win? All black women. All dopers.

      Delete
  34. Oh god. Take me out and shoot me now.

    Apparently, journalists are suggesting that Nadal has become a better player BECAUSE of his knee injuries.

    Yes, at the age of 27, Nadal has made a dramatic change to his "style of play" (by becoming more aggressive), and become a better player. It had nothing to do with his IGF1 injections (PRP ruse), and testosterone patches on off days at the USO.

    Nadal keeps surprising everybody, by doing things that no human being has been able to do before.


    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/tennis/24011898

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It never fails to boggle my mind how low the tennis media can go.

      A similar story was written by ESPN's Greg Garber (whom I thought was a better reporter than this) who suggests primarily the same thing the BBC reporter did.

      http://espn.go.com/tennis/usopen13/story/_/id/9647463/us-open-more-mastery-rafael-nadal

      It's beyond belief that the media is buying into this garbage. But I shouldn't be shocked. The tennis media has become more like fawning, starstruck fans with typewriters everyday. We shouldn't be surprised that they sound more like teenage girls squealing over the One Direction singers than actual reporters when they talk about players like Nadal.

      Delete
    2. The last few paragraphs of this article have to be satire. The author of this piece should at least try to put those quotes by "Uncle Toni" into context. I mean -- the secret of tennis being "to play well"? The dumbness of this statement in regards to the ongoing PED discussion here and elsewhere just blows my mind. Seriously, what was he thinking?

      Delete
    3. "Confidence is Rafa's strongest suit. Despite the obstacles his knees present, he has made at least three dramatic comebacks in a span of four years."

      Yeah, it's confidence.

      Delete
    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    5. Is this really in the Beebs sports section?

      I wonder how come the guys/gals from the BBC's fan-fiction department never talk to the BBC guys/gals who did the doping stories on Lance...?

      Ah, wait, yes, nevermind,the fan-fiction department is living in their very own bubble and that clown who signed that piece, Mr. Piers Newberry, must undoubtedly be the happiest puppy among them...

      For all the awards the BBC ever got, this prime example of a sycophantic apologetic, reality-denying article should lead to at least a restoration of two of their awards. Bloody poor journalism from the Beeb.

      Though it started off promising, Newberry was, for reasons unbeknownst to him, onto something...:

      "It leaves him in pole position to end the year at the top of the rankings, something that would have been hard to believe when he pulled out of the Australian Open last December."
      Sadly, he did not follow that question of believe...it is still very hard to believe, Mr. Newberry for anybody who has eyes to see.

      Delete
    6. I think people forget the effect of PEDs on an athletes confidence....

      If drugs make them stronger, faster, fitter and capable of more rapid recovery, what do you think will happen to their self-belief?

      Delete
    7. That article must surely be tongue-in-cheek

      Delete
  35. Alright let's hear it from Mutant Serena during her UO presser:

    Q: It seems like you're trying to be real quiet.

    SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I just think sometimes when I say, Come on too much, I get out of breath actually. So I really try to pace myself in terms of that.

    Q: You also just tied Federer, someone in your era. Does that mean anything to you?

    Serena: "It's an honor to be even with Roger. He's been such a great champion throughout the years, and he's just an unbelievable competitor and he's still playing still, and he can probably still win more. So it feels really good to be, you know, in that same league as him. He's just been so incredibly consistent, so we have had really different careers."

    ---> Alright - this fact makes me sad for many reasons...First, they are deffo not in the SAME league... Anyway, I'll stop here.


    Q. Earlier this week Victoria was talking about her X Factor. Help us out. What's Serena's X Factor? What makes you so special as a champion on court?

    SERENA WILLIAMS: Well, I don't know. I can't talk about that myself. I think that's a better question for someone else to answer. I don't know what makes me special. I consider myself just like everyone else. I just play.


    I am sure we have a few ideas here what that XFACTOR might actually be...Also, how delusional of her, she is NOT like everyone else in her field - that's why she keeps dominating.



    http://www.usopen.org/en_US/news/interviews/2013-09-08/201309091378694041603.html

    ReplyDelete
  36. I know we often get maligned on this website for using photograph's as a form of evidence, but take a look at these 2 photo's of Serena Williams, taken 14 years apart almost to the day:
    http://tinyurl.com/qdemjce
    http://tinyurl.com/oel95ql

    I know she was very young in the first picture, but there is no denying that she has dramatically increased her musculature over the years!

    Her change in physique is particularly pronounced when compared to somebody like Maria Sharapova, whose physique has barely altered over the last 9 years:
    http://tinyurl.com/nhljs57
    http://tinyurl.com/nopzveh

    Even big sister Venus doesn't look much different physically from 14 years ago to now:
    http://tinyurl.com/qcat74w
    http://tinyurl.com/pyoaasm

    I think it's only natural, as an inquisitive human, to wonder just how Serena has managed to pack on so much extra muscle over the past decade, when many of her contemporaries have remained almost identical in terms of their physique and overall musculature.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It must be more natural to start thinking. Maria and Venus are slim. Serena is just like her mother. Take a look,at her tighs, breast and ass and ask yourself if she doped to get them too. Check her past pictures online and see how fat she cam easily get.

      Delete
    2. rated_r90 didn't post anything about how "fat" she can get. It's not the issue at hand. He/she was asking how she added so much muscle. Do you need to have the difference between muscle and fat explained to you?

      Answering a question about how she gained so much muscle mass by stating that she's just fat like her mother is hilarious.

      Delete
    3. Did you just conflate muscles with fat? Lol.

      Delete
    4. Here's Serena's mother posing as Eric Ed posing as tennis fan nineteeneightytwo :)
      Thank you for pointing to us that we should not always believe our eyes.
      But sorry, it's just too obvious.
      Good job, rated r90, it's not easy to find those early picture, as if someone's been cleaning the internet:)

      Delete
  37. Post some of these great comments to the BBC, ESPN and US Open links provided above. More of their mainstream readers will find out about THASP, and that will add to the momentum for revealing truth in tennis. Eventually the reporters may even check out THASP as well.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Interesting article on doping in tennis in this week's Scotland on Sunday. One of the very few serious journalists willing to approach this subject.

    http://www.scotsman.com/news/tom-english-andy-murray-s-words-on-doping-important-1-3081915

    ReplyDelete
  39. Interesting article on doping in tennis in this week's Scotland on Sunday. One of the very few serious journalists willing to approach this subject.

    http://www.scotsman.com/news/tom-english-andy-murray-s-words-on-doping-important-1-3081915

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like the quote from McEnrore from 1984...

      “You see these guys or girls who come on to the tour talking about their new training programmes and their diets where they eat this or that new thing,” he said in 1984. “But they’ll never tell you about the drugs they took.”

      Now Johny is talking about how clean tennis is. You can not be serious!

      Delete
    2. The same John McEnroe who has admitted 'unknowingly' consuming "steroid of the legal kind they used to give horses until they decided it was too strong even for horses", over a 6 years period..........

      http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/news/story?id=1708055

      (BTW, Agassi's quotes in that article are very interesting in retrospect.....)

      McEnroe's then wife, Tatum O'Neal, has been quoted as follows, about potential 'steroid use' (though McEnroe refuted the accuracy of her statements).

      "I made him stop because he was becoming violent."

      http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2002/06/26/1023864607504.html

      Delete
    3. Finally an article that sticks out - for a change!

      Nice usage of facts - no insinuation nor slander, simple facts that prove devastating when summoned up in one piece. A blueprint for many other tennis journalists...

      Regarding McEnroe - isn't he running his own academy somewhere in upstate New York? I bet he needs sponsors and funding for that, so he better not scare folks.

      Delete
  40. Loved the article above. Nice find Ross Crombie.

    Does anyone know if the blood samples taken for the blood passport are also tested for drugs? Or are they just tested for data purposes only? Is it an actual drug test or just a blood test?

    ReplyDelete
  41. Has this Serena steroids video ever been posted here?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLnpP-EpNeI

    ReplyDelete
  42. Something I read today, just to cheer everybody up on the site... :-)


    "While most romantics were rooting for Wawrinka to upset the world No1, his eventual defeat does at least mean that the two leading players of 2013 will contest the last grand slam of the year.

    This might seem a touch unfair on Andy Murray, whose ghost-busting eclipse of Fred Perry at Wimbledon was unquestionably the moment of the season.

    But while Murray has delivered some sublime performances, he is like the composer who has to wait for inspiration to arrive, popping up after a fallow period to unveil a new masterwork. Whereas Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are more like Mozart and Bach: relentless in their productivity"

    I also liked McEnroe's quote comparing Nadal to Leonardo Da Vinci and Einstein, somebody said it at last!

    Enjoy the final everybody!

    ReplyDelete
  43. While the Scotsman above provided us with a good example of what journalism could do, I am afraid, you find the exact opposite easily.

    Here now is one particularly annoying specimen who simply wants free-for-all drugs and takes an uninformed stance:

    "For what it’s worth, Nadal has never failed a drug test. Is this evidence of his innocence, or of the inadequacy of tennis’s testing regime?

    How about Option Number 3: Who cares? If there’s a synthetic hormone out there that can soothe Nadal’s chronically tender patellar tendon and offset some of the pressure the torque of his violent two-handed backhand puts on his left knee -- well, then, there’s a scientist out there who deserves our thanks and congratulation.

    Who wouldn't want to see another 10 years “artificially” added to Nadal’s career? For that matter, is there a safe drug out there that can help slow the aging process for Roger Federer, who just turned 32 but whose days on the court now seem numbered?"

    Finally someone puts some sense to it! Revers that silly distracting ageing! Slam wins for golden-agers! Botox for ALL! Bathing in baby-blood and roids for breakfast! Epo during changeover! Federer playing until reaching 100 with bionic legs!

    But for reals, anybody who wants to see yet another ten years of Nadal snatching away Grand Slam titles records while Toni keeps talking about that bum-knee...



    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-09-09/let-s-hope-drugs-prolong-rafael-nadal-s-great-career-.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a depressing read......

      PED use for non-medically approved indications conveys an increased risk of stroke, pulmonary embolism and liver disease... Anyone advocating the "free-for-all" approach is either medically ignorant, or callous enough for want a return to roman gladiatorial values.......

      Death on the court? Now, were really talking ratings!!!!!

      Delete
    2. Think of the advertising they could get!

      Seriously though, this article is beyond grotesque and irresponsible. And, yes, depressing. Very depressing.





      Delete
  44. Look at the size of Serena's left calf muscle:
    http://tinyurl.com/oekkbhe

    ReplyDelete
  45. 41 min in: Nadal already bagged the first set!





    I think his knees will appreciate this efficiency.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Nadal will probably lose only the third set to alleviate suspicions

    ReplyDelete
  47. The Nadal beast show is getting ridiculous. After 2 weeks he looks as fresh as in a first round. Even Djoker looks very clean in comparison

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it shows the strength of the stuff he is on now.

      the camp def went back to the lab to pull a daft punk for nadal

      harder
      better
      faster
      stronger

      Delete
  48. Replies
    1. And double digit shot rallies have been normal for this match.

      In no way shape or form do I want the boring old one-two strike big boom serve tennis back, but we're seeing rallies of 15-20 shots virtually each point with no tiring.

      This is flippin' nuts.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  49. nadal is just unceremoniously crushing every ball djoker hits. his effortlss power is well...unbelievable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Holy crap!! This is not tennis i'm watching. Itz Nadal hitting the ball with spin as hard as he can anywhere on the court with a few drop shots thrown in there, overpowering Djoke who now looks completely lost out there. This is crazy!! No one can quite this superhuman Beast. Please go away for another 7 months--can't stand to watch this kinda play.

      Delete
    2. Djokovic is gassed this fourth set. Looks like he'll be doping extra hard next year to catch up with Nadal.

      Delete
    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  50. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Nadal's juice is definitely superior to Djokovic's now but Djokovic is a better talent, which is why he is winning right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had that exact thought. Djoker is a superior talent, but nadal's stuff is better.

      or maybe not even that, just that nadal's body responds better to ped's

      Delete
  52. We might be in for an Australian Open repeat, folks.

    ReplyDelete
  53. really? 5 or 6 slice shots in a row counts for "variety" now?

    these announcers are ridiculous

    ReplyDelete
  54. nadal has the nerve to cry on court, after his outright theft on Hc this year.

    djoker looks like he doesnt know what hit him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup he played well too. This was enough two years ago, today it barely helped. The Australian open will be very interesting.

      Delete
    2. Djoker played exceptionally well - all those balls he scraped out of the corners, the drop shots he ran down. The shots he threw at Nadal...


      I can't believe you can lose when playing like that. Ridiculous!

      Delete
    3. Djokovic's retrieving of Nadal's shots was insane and some of the angles he hit were unreal, but it still wasn't good enough to best Nadal. Djokovic played his heart out those three sets - losing that 0-40 lead at 4-4 in the 3rd set ruined him the rest of the match.

      I think Djokovic is a doper (or has doped in the past), but he's clearly not on the same stuff as Nadal. Djokovic is clearly not the same player he was in 2011 or 2012.

      Delete
  55. I think one point tells it all, Novak won the PED point of the tournament but was totally gassed the next game. Nadal hardly breathed.

    In the 2011 final, Djokovic probably wasn't striking the ball as well as today, but Nadal was being yanked all over. This year he was faster, and stronger. It is so sad. Midway through the match, I just had to go and watch a youtube video of Sampras winning his last US Open. He seemed so old, so amateur where fitness levels were concerned but the beauty of his tennis is now a long lost art.

    Will Djokovic amp his doping regime up? I'm not so sure, he doesn't seem so obsessed with winning as Nadal does, which means we will probably see Nadal go on a slam tear again, breakin Sampras's and Federer's records and ending up the official GOAT. Fantastic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i mean..i cant believe no one questions how a year after major so called knee injury..nadal is DOMINANT on his worst fucking surface.

      undefeated on HC...what happened to HC is bad for the knees???

      Delete
    2. Yup. The PED point and the subsequent loss of his serve was very revealing - Nadal calmly took over the driver's seat.

      Delete
  56. The 2 players with the most extreme physical strength in the history of the ATP and WTA tours win the US open.........

    I hope this gives both journalists and fans pause for thought.......

    ReplyDelete
  57. In any other generation, a player like Nadal would have been done by 25-26. Now he is in superior form to Roger Federer at the equivalent age. That seemed UNTHINKABLE a few years ago. Roger's record will be toast in the next 2 years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. no doubt, rafa will shatter roger's records, defying all physical predictors for a player of his style


      and so called pundits will forever wax romantic about his so called will and determination, even as he physically defies the stastics for a player with his skillset

      Delete
    2. Agreed. I think Nadal will have 20 slams and 40 masters titles by the time he's done. I don't see anybody stopping him on the court and we know the authorities will continue to turn a blind eye to his very obvious juicing.

      Delete
    3. Barring being publicly exposed as a doper, Nadal will more likely than not tie or pass Federer before the Rio Olympics in 2016. Heck he might even do it earlier.

      It will take a monumental effort (and Nadal, Djokoivc, Murray and about 10 other players being beaten in the draw) for Federer to win another Slam.

      Delete
    4. Nadal will end up with 20 plus slams IMO. He is not going anywhere and his knees are just fine. I am surprised it was a 4 set match today. I expected Nadal to win in straight sets considering how "strong" he has been. Djokovic is clearly not the superman of 2011 and seems to have resigned himself to the fact that one cannot win in a doping contest with Nadal.

      Delete
  58. Nadal crying.


    Prolly because he can't believe his luck of not being caught this time and getting away with whatever it was he did during his seven months off-time (= silent ban).

    Djoker lost the match when he could not keep his break in the third...Nadal levelled.

    During one of those service games Nadal even fell on his back like a bug, slipped twice and lost those points which left Djoker with two crystal-clear break points ... which he was unable to convert coz Nadal struck back.

    Djoker was unable to use his break points while otoh Nadal was clinical in using his break points.

    Nadal was lethal, ruthless, aggressive (insert all the usual adjectives)...I mean, dang, Djoker played sure winners, still Nadal returned them with interest...the amount of spin Nadal managed to generate/sustain throughout boggles my mind.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it seemed like djoker couldnt ever get comfortable with spin *and* pace of nadal's ball.

      i still maintain its like he doesnt know what hit him. not that djoker isnt suspect, but clearly what rafa is on now is superior to whatever djoker was on in 2011

      Delete
    2. @Broke Chef

      I agree. Uncle Tony and Corretja must have changed the old formula to something even less detectable but ever more potent.

      That puzzled Djoker look was saw might have been owed to the question of what exactly it was Nadal might have taken and why his own team could not also get some of that...

      Delete
    3. I'm sure Nadal is on some kind of designer drug. I had to laugh when Nadal said that no other player makes him up his game like Djokovic does. That is so true in more ways than one.

      Delete
  59. Did anyone notice how Nadal avoided the knee question Mary Carillo asked him during his winner speech (how are your knees holding up)??? He knows that anything he says at this point will look like such joke, a lie, a farce that he & his team are just avoiding it. Nadal, Sserena & their teams are laughing all the way to the bank with their 3.6 mil. So sad. So sad :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pretty much, even though Uncle Toni mentioned during the tournament that Nadal's knees were still "hurting" - even though I think he said this in case Nadal lost. Nadal won't talk about the knees until he loses a match - then we'll hear how much the knees "hurt."

      Delete
    2. Wilander pestered him with that question before the match as well, suggesting he on top of the knee problems might also have shoulder troubles. (Heh, where did Wilander get that from, I wonder?)

      At which point Nadal looked visibly annoyed, denying the shoulder troubles and insisting his knees are fine, for now.

      From my own perspective from handball (German second league team), I can only add that any athletes who have battled Hoffas and tendonitis can only partially alleviate the pain - not cure it fully unless they would stop playing.

      Anybody playing with those degenrative conditions only played WORSE after that diagnosis on the long run. Maybe occasional peaks when using pain killers or right after syringe cures. But never such an unbelievable streak as Nadal has been presneting us with. Not possible.

      Delete
    3. Don't mix Queen Serena with that bizarre creature in Nadal

      Delete
  60. I don't know what to say after what I just saw for the last 3 and a half hours. Djokovic's level of play would have been enough to straight set pretty much every player on tour, but Nadal was playing tennis from another planet. I don't think he has ever hit his groundies with more power and depth than in this match and his movement was as good as it's ever been.

    I don't understand how anyone can buy the knee story. From where I'm sitting, it's nothing but a ruse to get his hands on TUEs (on top of the illegal stuff he's obviously taking) and to explain long absences from the tour. Just think about it: The guy was gone for 7 months and his tennis future was hanging by a threat only for him to return with a vengeance and play one of the greatest seasons by a player ever. The results are enough to make me weep:

    Won: French Open, US Open, Indian Wells, Madrid, Rome, Canada, Cincinnati, Barcelona, Acapulco, Sao Paulo

    Finalist: Monte Carlo, Vina Del Mar

    1st Round: Wimbledon

    66-3 (!) match record. 23-0 (!!!) on hardcourts.

    What a joke.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The best joke of this endless joke: 1st rd Wimby.


      I wanna get the whole story on what happened there. This is of utter importance, too bad no one can get behind it and do investigative work...

      Delete
    2. Agreed, because Darcis (allegedly) injured his shoulder during that match and had to default next round. Darcis played out of his mind but Nadal was meek throughout the entire match.

      Has Darcis even played since?

      Delete
    3. I believe McEnroe mentioned Darcis hasn't played, Hmmm, I wonder what happened there.

      Delete
  61. Nadal´s outfit selection--same colour as court and fence, what a coincidence-- is quite telling about the nature of the subject. Come on, more sportsmanship awards for the Beast who destroyed Tennis.

    ReplyDelete
  62. This opinion will probably be of the least popular on these boards, but I am excited Nadal won. The reason I started playing tennis was in part due to him(my introduction to tennis was right when Roger and Rafa started their rivalry), so I will always have a soft spot of sorts regardless of the massive doping going on. If I'm going to root for a doper, its him.

    With that said, before the match started, I was not sure Nadal would win. In fact, unlike the consensus on this board, I saw him as a slight underdog.

    The reason Nadal won? The way I saw it, Djokovic had a bit of a mental breakdown and simply made too many errors. Errors that were incredibly costly.

    In fact, I think Djokovic even played better, and this is coming from a Nadal fan. To me, he was totally handling Nadal's pace and spin, better than usual. Fantastic angles from Djokovic and a better serve as well.

    In the end, Djokovic lost the belief. And that's what handed Nadal the win. I don't really believe Djokovic was tired (remember, he played possum around with Wawrinka).

    Overall, I am stunned he won.

    The coming months will be very interesting, what will Djokovic do? Murray? and even Roger.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Greg Couch's tweet from a little bit ago:

    Greg Couch
    ‏@gregcouch
    That does it: Nadal is now the best ever. Sorry Roger

    https://twitter.com/gregcouch

    They're already burying Federer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He's a FOX Sports columnist, sorry for not mentioning that.

      Delete
  64. So, we have a woman who ran into a 'panic room' when drug testers arrived at her home in the time slot that she provided and a man who suddenly needed 7 months away from competition for a degenerative knee condition, missing multiple mandatory events including two grand slams after playing grueling tennis without ANY visible problems (including the match he lost to Rosol) for months only to come back and have his most dominant season to date (after many years of this condition recurring) while not losing on knee battering hard courts.

    Meet your US Open champions and world number 1 ranked players.

    It is good therapy to come to this site with like minded people whilst this farce continues. These players are liars, cheats, crooks, scoundrels, con artists, utter disgraces and the subject of doping is so opaque and taboo that no one can say a damned thing about it. You'd think people would wake up after the Lance Armstrong bust, but sadly this is not the case. Strong, valid suspicions of a man who turns out to be absolutely EVERYTHING the 'conspiracy theorists' claimed that he likely was (as well as with many, many other athletes over the years) apparently just isn't a good enough demonstration of how we should be VERY skeptical of unbelievable comebacks, recoveries and physical performances.

    As the late Douglas Adams parodied:

    If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family Anatidae on our hands.

    ReplyDelete