Daily Dispatch: Tomic Creates Press Room Drama
Li Na crashed out early, Andy Roddick prolonged his career for another couple days, and Novak Djokovic kept rolling at the US Open today. The men’s second round matches wrapped up tonight, and there are some exciting match-ups coming on Labor Day weekend.
The best quotes from today:
Lleyton Hewitt, on Roger Federer’s 2012: “It’s an incredible effort. The way he obviously played at Wimbledon this year, yeah, he wasn’t far off obviously beating Novak last year when Novak was playing so well here in New York as well. He really should have won that match; he was the better player. Roger’s Roger. He’s the greatest player of all time.”
Novak Djokovic, reflecting on following up his impressive 2011 season: “I have never had in my career such a long streak of victories, you know, six months without losing a match. Was incredible to be part of that. It was very difficult for myself to ask for another six months like that. Maybe that’s once in a lifetime that you get to experience such a great season. Yes, I have maybe set very high standards and expectations for myself. So 2012 comparing to 2011 isn’t as successful, you know, titles‑wise, but I feel physically better than I did last season, so for me that’s a positive.”
“I always try to take the best out of all these experiences and out of that season. For me, the positive also is that knowing that I can play that well gives me a lot of confidence. I improved on different kinds of surfaces. I won my first Wimbledon trophy, and grass obviously is not my most preferred surface. But, you know, it opened the doors for me on that surface, and gave my confidence level a great boost. So I’m going to try to carry that on as I have done this year.”
Today in daft reporter questions:
Q. Happily married man, three kids, all that. What was it like with Kim? What was your favorite memory?
LLEYTON HEWITT: I don’t know. Not sure.
The US Open website went with an unfortunate, “Sharapova shrieks into sweet 16″ headline for their write-up of her match. The website caught flak earlier in the week when they dubbed Christina McHale “McFail,” in one of their headlines, eventually changing it after receiving many complaints.
Drama erupted in the press room when a reporter asked Bernard Tomic about John McEnroe’s comments that he was not making an effort in the final set of his match against Andy Roddick. After seeming to agree with McEnroe’s comments (which I interpreted as him confirming that he was unhappy with his efforts in the final set, not admitting that he “tanked” the match), he lashed out at a reporter from Reuters when the topic came up again.
From reading their comments about the presser, I assumed Tomic must’ve truly lost his composure.
So when the video was posted, I was surprised to see that the whole thing was much more innocuous than expected. Judge for yourself here.
The outrage feels manufactured. Tomic repeatedly described being overwhelmed by the occasion. Though he’s flourished on the big stage before, particularly at Wimbledon last year, the atmosphere for what could’ve been Roddick’s last career night match on Arthur Ashe was something else entirely.
Also, calling a 19-year-old “bush league,” is kind of, well, bush league.
Tweets of the day:
Del Potro blasts one of his victory tennis balls out of Armstrong and onto the Grandstand. Let called with Safarova serving at 5-6. #fail
— Ricky Dimon (@RD_Tennistalk) August 31, 2012
(From John and Patrick McEnroe’s father)
@bgtennisnation Brad, a big time Amen to that.Donald Young down the tube.He and his parents thick as boards.
— John P. McEnroe (@BigSwingingMac) August 31, 2012
(On Julian Benneteau)
“I don’t trust him anymore” – Benny on Novikov. #LOL
— Katrina (@returnwinner) August 31, 2012