1. Roger Federer is such a humongous dork. Wait, we already knew that.
@JohnIsner … Blast off! Hey– Can you tell us what the weather is looking like up there?
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) May 28, 2013
2. This is one of the more ridiculous things I’ve read lately:
On a day when heavy rain shortened the program, the twitchy Bartoli, full of ticks and eccentric mannerisms, could have been accused of hogging the stage as she made men’s world number one Novak Djokovic wait for his grand entrance.
As Courtney Nguyen points out, where’s the article bashing Monfils for “hogging the stage,” and pushing the Roland Garros defending champion Maria Sharapova over to Court Suzanne Lenglen yesterday? Yeah, nobody wrote that.
3. For those of us who (perhaps irrationally) hoped that Bernard Tomic would distance himself from his father after the Drouet incident, it appears that’s not going to happen. Per Sport360.com:
Bernard Tomic revealed his father, John, who was arrested for assault in Madrid for allegedly head-butting his son’s hitting partner Thomas Drouet and is banned from entering Roland Garros, is in fact in Paris and remains his coach and an integral part of his team.
“I’d like to say some things before you guys ask me about them obviously involving my father,” Bernard stated before asking the press not to question him on the topic. “He’s here right now in Paris, so he’s still working with me, he’s still my dad, he’s still my coach, and I love him a lot.
“Involving the incidents that happened, I don’t want to talk about it a lot or at all, I should say. And it’s a very difficult thing for me to put my words into that…
“My dad’s still my coach, and he’ll always be, because I grew up with him and he knows me better than everyone else.”
Unfortunately, Tomic’s French Open match didn’t go well either, as he was forced to retire with a leg injury at the start of the third set. It’s a sad situation, and complicated one.
4. Kudos to Uniqlo on Novak Djokovic’s fantastic mint green Roland Garros ensemble. I haven’t liked many of the outfits they’ve given since Djokovic signed the endorsement deal, but this one looks great.
The celebration after Novak Djokovic beat David Goffin! 🙂 pic.twitter.com/AeSxAEdaSn
— Juan Heredia (@JuanHeredia18) May 28, 2013
1. Novak Djokovic can wear a new color on a tennis court! The World No. 1 opened his French Open campaign against David Goffin today wearing the a very nice light blue shirt (as you can see from Amy’s comment above, the color is slightly ambiguous). I’ve been watching Djokovic play tennis since 2006, and I honestly can’t recall him wearing anything even close to this color. Many kudos to him (since he apparently has imput on the design of his kits) and Uniqlo. Bonus kudos to Uniqlo for already making the kit available for purchase here in the US.
2. Marion Bartoli will always be an entertainer. Olga Govortsova served for the match at 5-4 in the third set of their first round encounter today, but Bartoli dug deep to find enough clutch shots to turn the match around and claim a rousing win. The intensity Bartoli showed, coupled with the shots of her dad in the stands were fascinating. As always.
3. Jack Sock is liking the clay! The young American, who I wrote about in a previous edition of The Backboard, not only qualified into a main draw for the first time in his career by surviving the qualies at this year’s Roland Garros, but rolled Guillermo García Lópes in straight sets today. A great win for the 20-year-old, and one that will taste sweeter knowing that he earned his place in the main draw through actual wins, instead of a wildcard.
4. The surprising result of the day (for me) came from the men’s doubles draw, where Jerzy Janowicz, paired with veteran compatriot Tomasz Bednarek, upset the Indian duo of Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna, who were the No. 4 seeds at this year’s French Open. That’s a quality win, and in a way, backs up Janowicz’ run to the Indian Wells doubles final (partnered with Treat Huey). Like I’ve written/said before, 2013 is all about getting Jerzy as much top-level experiences as he can get. Wins like this certainly help, even if it’s doubles.
5. The Washington D.C metro has the worst paying scheme of any public transportation system on the face of the earth. There’s no flat fee: what you pay depends on where you’re going AND at what time you’re using the metro. Peak hours cost more. Also, if you don’t have the frequent user card (which makes no sense for short-term tourists), you get charged extra. So what ends up happening? Every time you leave a station you hope and pray there’s enough money on your card for you to be allowed to leave. If you’re out of luck (or using the metro at the wrong time), it’s back to a different machine to add money (which won’t take certain bill denominations or credit cards). I find it amazing that a city that receives so many tourists each year (a staggering 16 million every year, according to this USA Today article) has such a convoluted paying scheme for their mass transit system. I love every other aspect of the D.C Metro (which I used for the first time 14 years ago), but this paying scheme is absolute nonsense.
1. The rain absolutely sucks. I knew it was coming this week, but the realities of it hit me hard as a fan and a writer. All my momentum feels gone and my brain feels like it has turned into mush. I do not know how the players do it, they are much more professional than I am–though that probably goes without saying considering our lots in life.
However, the rain in NYC today does make me feel a lot closer to Paris. So there’s that.
2. Jack Sock continues to impress on the big stages, which just makes me more frustrated with his terrible results in the Challengers this year. I give him all the credit in the world for qualifying for Roland Garros and absolutely demolishing Guillermo Garcia Lopez in the first round, but it proves that with his talent he should be making more strides by now.
Still, I hold out hope that this will be a turning point. His serve and forehand are a blast to watch, and I love his attitude. Also, it should be noted that he has had two friends pass away recently, which is incredibly difficult for anyone so young to deal with. He has put their initials on their shoes and says he is playing for them, so kudos to him. I’m sure that their families appreciate the gesture.
3. We all need more Jelena Jankovic in our lives, but you already knew that.
— Andrew James (@AndrooJames) May 28, 2013
Outside press, JJ conducting interview on armchair & nearly falling out of it laughing. Cracking herself up. Obviously in good spirits, no?
— Nick McCarvel (@NickMcCarvel) May 28, 2013
As I said on Twitter earlier, Marion Bartoli is a gift to the world. I love her. Her match today was just everything we know and love about her, and too bad for Reuters and Flatman and everyone in the world who doesn’t appreciate her. I’ll have more on that later though. I’m still trying to process the match.
5. TOMMY HAAS!
6. The old Russians still have it! Mikhail Youzhny, Dmitry Tursunov, and Nikolay Davydenko all marched through to the second round. Of course, it took Youzhny NINE match-points, but really, who’s counting?