Tag Archive: Great Britain F1


Great Britain F1 Glasgow | Day Two

I one hundred percent think that therapists should send their patients to Futures tournaments. I mean, nothing higher than Futures, since we all know that eventually, tennis causes alcoholism, but Futures… five hours of that today and I’m zen as fuck. Calm as a cucumber.
Might as well enjoy it, since when I return to Queen’s I’ll return to shaking and crying in the practice court bushes any time Roddick approaches the net.

My first match of the day was Mathieu Rodrigues (FRA) vs Kenny De Schepper (FRA). Uhh, I don’t know what’s happened to the French lately, but their names have gotten weird as hell. What ever happened to names like Simon, Monfils, Benneteau, Gasquet? They don’t even look French. The players I mean, their faces. It’s all very confusing. Confusing, and sexy.
I turned round at some point to see Eaton win his match behind me. I wasn’t even aware that he was playing, so I felt guilty and pleased simultaneously. Yet interestingly enough, I don’t think that counts as a guilty pleasure.
One to think about…

 

Mathieu Rodrigues. Like Verdasco, but much more accessible/corruptible.

Similar to Verdasco, I didn’t have very high hopes for this boy. Originally I did, but when I arrived and he was immediately 0-2 down, I figured today maybe just wasn’t his day. His somewhat less attractive countryman was stealing the show, and I don’t even know how. Because I don’t know much about tennis. I’m not going to lie, the match as a whole just wasn’t very exciting, and if it wasn’t two French players, I probably would have just walked away. Rodrigues became a profanity mumbling, racquet throwing fool and I left halfway through the second set to see Evans.

Also, I don’t mean to sound like a total girl, but I really do want to stress that those photographs do not do his face justice.
He had dark brown eyes the size of MY FISTS.
Anway, back to the tennis…

Evans was clearly too angry to bother giving anyone a match to watch. He powered through this like (…a racoon came into my head. He was much more powerful than a racoon), basically like someone who did not want to have his time wasted by Sablinsky and his mediocre attempts to beat him. I did love the fact that despite being 6-1 3-0 up, he still got all pissy with himself. Even when he’s pleased, he sounds like he’s so happy he has to go kneecap someone.


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Great Britain F1 Glasgow

First of all, can I just say, loved my introduction.
I also love that it is right there in writing that I can write whatever I please, so there will be no apologies if I go off on a tangent.

There is one apology though. No, make that two apologies. Not on my behalf but on that of my college. First of all, they only allowed me to have a good camera out until 4.30pm, which would have allowed me to photograph three matches. It would have, if they gave me a camera that was fully charged.
They did not.
Hope you like the couple of photos I got of Dan Evans (GBR) and Daniel Berta (SWE), then.

I don’t know if this has anything to do with height, but both Dan Evans and Dan Cox remind me of Clement whenever I watch them play. Evans was punchy and hard hitting with an impressively accurate serve, and as much as I don’t want to sound like my nan, he really was a delight to watch. He took the lead right from the start, keeping the match on serve but breezing through his service games, and taking Berta to sometimes painfully long deuce points. Those always seem to happen when you’re waiting to sit down, I’ve found. I’m not saying that Berta was in any way unimpressive, don’t get me wrong. His accuracy was top drawer and I found myself thinking ‘See, Roddick, that’s where the line is. Hit that.’ But unfortunately for Berta, he seemed to get a kick out of sloppiness and the consistencey just wasn’t there. The match belonged to Evans, the angry little pistol that he is, he won it 7-6(2) 6-4.

Things I was distracted by during this match:

  • The hot umpire from Queen’s 2009 standing, sitting, walking, anything, beside and in front of me. We call him ‘Sharky’, because he looks a bit shark-y.
  • Being reminded how horrendously cold Scotstoun is. If you’re thinking of attending, bring layers. And your own teabags for cheap (if not free, depends on who serves you…) tea to warm your hands.
  • How much Rodrigues looks like a cross between Verdasco and Bolelli. But he’s French. Yes, it was as good as it sounds.
  • Evans still looks like somebody who should be hanging out in the local swingpark with a bottle of MD 20/20 with an attitude to match, but gosh darnit I still think he’s great.

Dan Evans

 

Daniel Berta

 

My next match was the one I was most excited about. Nicolas Rosenzweig (FRA) vs Ahmed El Menshawy (GBR). Menshawy is currently ranked 1227 (anyone else find this funny?) in the world and is a wildcard into the Glasgow event. Or, was a wildcard I should say, because Rosenzweig annihiliated him. Completely unphased by classes of school children stampeding up and down the stands (mid point, may I add), he was chasing after balls that a lot of players at this level don’t bother their arse with. It reminded me of the way I’ve seen Simon run across the court, must be a French thing. Both players were taking risks left, right and centre, but it was Rosenzweig’s that really paid off. He beat El Menshawy 6-1 6-4, like a boss.

I literally stayed on Court 6 all day. I was meant to venture out to courts 7 and 8, but my bank balance couldn’t justify another £14 on taxis to and from the Stadium. This is a hint to anyone who wants to give me a lift any other day this week. I am 100% okay with getting into a car with a stranger as long as it takes me to the tennis.
So, the last match I managed to catch on Court 6 before I had to retreat back to college, was Chris Eaton (GBR) vs Marc Sieber (GER). It didn’t start very well for Eaton, he was playing like how I imagine a Viennese Whirl would play, if biscuits played tennis. Little bit like a fairy, little bit awkward, little bit like he didn’t want to break anything, such as a sweat, or my concentration on the wall beside him. But I quickly took it back, because a couple of games later he was on much better form. Great support from the crowd, too, even when he was playing like the son Mr Kipling wishes he never had. Just goes to show the good a little bit of Wimbledon glory can do. I missed the end, but he defeated Sieber 6-4 7-6(3).

Tomorrow’s lineup…

Uladzimir IGNATIK (BLR) (1) Vs Baptiste DUPUY (FRA)
Kenny DE SCHEPPER (FRA) Vs Mathieu RODRIGUES (FRA) (8)
Michael RYDERSTEDT (SWE) (3) Vs Robert VARGA (HUN)
Gleb SAKHAROV (FRA) Vs Jamie BAKER (GBR) (6)
Juho PAUKKU (FIN) (7) Vs Chris EATON (GBR)
Albano OLIVETTI (FRA) Vs Mirza BASIC (BIH)
Daniel EVANS (GBR) (5) Vs Alexander SLABINSKY (GBR)
Nicolas ROSENZWEIG (FRA) Vs Alexandre SIDORENKO (FRA) (2)

I have used top technology of today to highlight the matches that I hope don’t start until roughly 4pm. I definitely want to catch Ignatik, the top seeded player. I also want to see Rodrigues for much shallower reasons. Rosenzweig because, as much as I want to have faith in him, I think it’ll be the last match he plays this week. Evans because I just hate loving him, and love hating him.

For the rest of the results from today, head on over HERE.

I will leave you today with a photograph of Evans looking angry. Evans always looks angry.

My beloved readership: due to the fact that I’ll be racing around in a panic trying to get everything done ahead of my Wednesday-scheduled drive to Florida, not to mention the fact that I’ll actually be driving to Florida from Wednesday to Friday (blizzard permitting), I won’t be around here to coddle you with content in the way to which you’ve already clearly become accustomed.

So it pleases me greatly to announce that – by way of guilt-ridden compensation – I’ve enlisted the help of not just one, but two special guest contributors for the week!  Of course, I only have clearance to announce one of them at present.  The other is a not-so-closely-held secret (for now).

In the meantime, allow me to introduce the special guest-contributing stylings of Christina Marie (please hold your applause ’til the end of this post, OK?  I mean really, there’s no need to interrupt my flow with your childishly premature exclamations right now), a tennis maven and photographer extraordinaire who’ll be providing courtside coverage of the Great Britain F1 Futures event in Glasgow all the livelong week.

The $15K tournament, one of only two 15K’s on the calendar for the week (the other being China – I’m still looking for correspondents there), promises to be a most excellent event.  Uladzimir Ignatik has hopped a plane fresh (?) from his quarterfinal appearance in the Sao Paulo Challenger to be the top seed here, joining the remaining seeds Alexandre Sidorenko, Michael Ryderstedt, Harri Heliovaara, Dan Evans, Jamie Baker, Juho Paukku and Mathieu Rodrigues, in that order.

Iggy Plays…

But you may not see any of those people here (well, maybe Mathieu Rodrigues), as my special guest has been known to favor the French at times.  But she’s got the green light to cover whatever she damn well pleases.  I don’t see any of you going out and getting special Glaswegian artists to please you with content free of charge, after all.  So please be nice.  You may whet your appetite with Tuesday’s order of play here.

Oh, and you may now applaud.

Update on the Futures/Future

So look, people.  It’s no secret, and there’s no need to pussyfoot around it.  Let’s just get it right out there in the open: I’ve been horribly remiss in not giving you any updates from the Futures tour this week, it’s true.  But here are my excuses: 1) the Sao Paulo Challenger has completely overshadowed the Brazil F2 Futures tourney in Salvador, even though Salvador is Brazil’s capital of happiness; b) I’m moving to Florida, duh, and such things require preparation that may limit my coverage and/or output; iii) though it may take place in Brazil’s happiness capital, the $10K Brazil F2 has an extremely watered-down field and didn’t really merit coverage until this weekend.

I mean, I know my job here is to chronicle and celebrate and all, but with only 11 Top Thousand players in the Salvador field, and an 8th seeded player ranked #658 in the world, well… it’s hard to get inspired about day-to-day coverage until the weekend, I admit.  But I will now, OK? 

So, in a tournament where the top 3 seeds are the only ones in the Top 400, and the rest of the field is outside the Top 500, it should come as no surprise that the top seeds are the ones who made it to the final weekend, no?  For me, the tournament started on Saturday, as it was almost predestined that #1 Eladio Ribeiro Neto (ATP #317), #2 Andre Begemann (#348), #3 Andre Miele (#398) and #4 Thales Turini (#530) would make it through to the final four.

Three Brazilians, two Andres and one German (Begemann).  But who would win out of them?  The answer may surprise you! 

Well, the semifinals may not surprise you, as top-seeded Ribeiro continued his dominance over 4th seed Turini, 7-6(3) 7-5, for his third win in three tries in this inter-Brazilian affair.  The 21 year-old Turini has yet to win a set over his 25 year-old countryman.  But second seeded Begemann had a tougher time against the third seed Miele, eking out a close 6-7(4) 6-4 6-4 win and evening their head-to-head at one apiece in this inter-Andre affair.  

But in the finals?  Surprise!  The second seed (Begemann, for those hard of memory) upset the 1st (Ribeiro-Neto, ditto), 1-6 6-4 6-4 to take the Salvador da Bahia title.  The win indicates a profound change in fortunes for the 26 year-old German, who just five months ago was at a career high #166 in the world, after reaching the semifinals at the Nottingham Challenger (l. Go Soeda) and almost making the main draw at Wimbledon.  He also partnered Dustin Brown to a dubs final at the Cairo Challenger and won the Zagreb Challenger championship teamed up with Matt Ebden.  But then, after a retirement in Round 2 of the Winnetka Challenger, the former Pepperdine standout went 1/15 for the rest of the year, his ranking plummeting almost 200 places. 

So, to say that this was a surprise result would actually be a bit of an understatement, I’d say.  Talk about turning over a new leaf in the new year! 

The Begemann Gets Paid

Meanwhile, in Plantation, Florida, the $10K USA F1 Futures are underway with a lot of interesting stories already (and the main draw hasn’t even begun).  Not the least of which is the return of Wayne Odesnik, the self-proclaimed “American Nadal” (he’s a lefty, he likes clay, just go with it), from a slashed-in-half two-year drug suspension, his penalty reduced due to the ongoing “Substantial Assistance” he’s been providing to the ITF (Code Name: Whistleblower).  I’m not big on moralizing/judging, so I’ll steer clear of L’affaire Odesnik for now, and will just note that it’s happening.

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