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Sunday, March 12, 2017

2016 IW 3/10 recap

Sorry for the late recap but had to recuperate first.

They did not allow spectators to stop and stand on the bleacher seat at the practice courts; if not for traffic reason, incomprehensible. Because those place is farthest from the players hence pose no security threat, unless they hurl a javelin at the players lol, and don't they check for those potential weapons at the entrance anyway(but they do allow umbrellas, which is good; fans need every kind of shade possible lol). 
Excessive security measures really mar the experience; wonder if they do it for insurance purposes.

Woz Vesnina practice match alongside Nadal(So I saw Nadal twice, Fed once, Murray and Wawrinka also twice, Djoker 0. Didn't get to see Tsonga either, neither Del Potro, Birdie..). Vesnina seemed more powerful.

Svitolina seemed quite aggressive against Wang, but it was no easy win because W was herself aggressive as well, hitting flat(couldn't watch much though, mainly 2nd set). W also served well.

On the run, players tend to hit flat with pace, but stretched wide, tend to usually sink it to the net. Couldn't they put more spin, or don't they have necessary (wrist) power to do it; women I mean.

Managed to watch Putintseva vs Konjuh practice match.
Putintseva seemed to serve well. K drop shot.

One of the players of the day is probably Caro Garcia. Against Rodina, in top form. Controlled aggression, and her firepower was good enough. Was that Dodin watching the match. But she was mostly watching her cell phone haha. Couldn't spot Mary Pierce this time.

Oh by the way Turkish player Cagla Buyukakcay seem to have withdrawn, not sure I've seen her before, so was looking forward to watch her play.

Another player of the day, Shuko Aoyama. Another ITF RM graduate. Didn't know she was so good/active at net lol. Was moving like crazy, and fast, at net and did poach well.

Some players attacked the opponent at net, good to see, murderous lol but effective tactic. Some managed to return those well.
Watson as usual served well. Nice to see Dabrowski again, she also played So. Cal tournaments.

So two doubles matches were ongoing at stadiums 8 and 9, but had to leave; of course to watch my favorite doubles player, MJMS!  And she didn't disappoint, hence another player of the day.

Deflecting the opponent's attacks with insouciance and aplomb. Terrific reflex. Excellent poaching. Sharp enough groundies, making passing shot winners. Serve seemed to have deteriorated but still managed to hold. Maria Jose, but shouldn't she rename it Magic Jose like the Lakers legend Magic Johnson haha.
Her coach was watching right beside me(how did I know? Of course I didn't know his face but glimpsed at his credential lol), just outside the stadium(as I said doubles are jam-packed, so I resorted to standing right outside the entrance area, enjoying a perfect view. Of course my leg/feet hurts, but small sacrifice to have an unimpeded view!).

Her service return was suspect though, and especially didn't play too well at TB. She was in agony after making errors haha; Klepac was more solid and carried the team to the win during the TB.
Coco as usual displayed showmanship lol(another So. Cal product of Big Babe tennis), and didn't know that Rogers was so good in doubles; made some very fine plays.

Youngsters that day were taught a lesson; Brat, Kasatkina, Kontaveit, Bencic all lost.
Couldn't watch Brat vs Domi match too much, but Brat's firepower was good enough(I was stupefied when I spied Sam at the 'eyrie' seat on the baseline side of stadium 3. I mean how did he manage to lug those two heavy cameras UP there? Told him about Bencic vs Bertens score and he was surprised).
Bencic was rather overpowered by Kiki, seemed to struggle against Kiki's heavy balls. Once threw the racquet in disgust!
Pliskova vs Kasatkina 1st set whizzed by, so hurried to the stadium to catch the later 2nd set. Plis. too good, attacking well. Methinks umpire Cicak watched this match below me.
Kontaveit vs Pav. was a blast, both moving and attacking well, probably one of the matches of the day.

As I said I was suffering from a headache, so couldn't really watch much. I was later half dozing in the last moment of Pliskova vs Kasatkina, tired as hell. By then I was only thinking of sleeping, so couldn't even remember that Chirico vs Begu match was scheduled later. Needless to say couldn't watch any of the ATP doubles featuring Wawrinka, Murray, Nadal and Djokovic. Too bad.

Did manage to watch a couple of games of Kozlov vs Young, and only could clap once on Stefan's fine play because he was mostly on the defensive against Y's aggression haha. I was just standing at the entrance(which commands a perfect view of the court, all the more perfect because it provides shade) and was soon surrounded by a couple of guys, they suspiciously looked like an entourage of a player to me(Young's?). Wasn't wearing a hearing aid so couldn't really catch what they were saying either!

So I wasn't as mentally tough as Michael Jordan(Flu game)! But unlike him I have nobody to care for me after the event ends lol, and I would challenge him to do 10 continuous days of birding AND tennis watching, roaming across the venue ALL day!

That's about it. Now off to bird Malibu Lagoon despite the heavy fog before watching UCSB vs Pepperdine.

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