Fed Comes Up Short Again & The Mystery of Marcus Sundh
Roger Federer dropped a third-set breaker to Juan Martin Del Potro at his home tournament in Basel and then promptly pulled out of the Paris Masters with some “niggles.” Ever since Fe embarrassed Djoko to win Cincy, he has been knocked out by Berdych, Murray and now Del Po. Last year, Fed dominated the indoors circuit. Now he needs to win London to set himself up in 2013 as a potential favorite at the first slam.
If you ever doubt how good these pro players are I’ll tell you a little story of Marcus Sundh. He’s a pro in suburban New York at a club my son takes some group lessons. I was watching Sundh, a Swedish player who grew up competing against Robin Soderling and then played at the Univ of Kentucky, teach a private lesson to a nice junior girl player. And I was impressed by how he rarely missed rally shots with her. He hit with a beautiful flowing style, open forehands and nice sliced one-handed backhands along with smooth, short back swing two-handers. He looked absolutely impenetrable, like the only way you’d be able to beat him would be to have a major power game.
So I thought to myself, this cat must have played some pro tennis and gotten at least into the top-200 in the world. But when I tried looking him up on the ATP site, his name didn’t even come up. Now who knows, maybe he didn’t have the money to go on the tour or maybe he just really likes teaching tennis for a living. But his bio at the club said he played Swedish club tennis with the likes of Magnus Norman and Joachim Johnannsson. It just goes to show you that even guys with beautiful games may never have made a dent in the rankings.
Finally, do you realize that Big John Isner is the only American to play in the Paris Masters? Not even Querrey or Brian Baker or Ryan Harrison tried qualifying. That is astounding. It’s like the Americans have bailed out of the Asian and European Indoor Circuit.
Double finally, has anyone ever seen Monica Niculescu play? Her game makes Fabrice Santoro’s game look conventional. She literally hits about 3 out of every 4 forehands with a shovel, under spin motion. She actually played Venus Williams in the the Austrian Indoor finals the other week and this girl is funky beyond belief.
And did anyone see how David Ferrer reacted when he won the indoor event in Valencia today against Dolgopolov. He dropped to the ground with his hands over his face, lied on his back like he’d won Wimbledon and then ran up into the stands to kiss Juan Carlos Ferrero. That Ferrer guy has some serious passion