Bios

Mar/15

29

It Has To Stop: Gulbis Has To Stop The Bleeding

Ernests Gulbis, the Latvian who amazingly beat Roger Federer in the quarters of the French Open last year and reached a career-high of No. 10 last year, has got to stop the bleeding. Yesterday he lost to Juan Monaco in Miami, 6-2, 6-4. Gulbis had 9 double faults, and hit a poor 39 % of […]

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Mar/15

18

Vince Spadea Is An Original

Spent a good bit of time in Beverly Hills with Vince on Monday and it’s always eye-opening and fun to hang with Vince. We had some java at the Urth Cafe on Melrose (Vince did, cappuccino, I had my green tea) and we talked and Vince in the midst of our discussion talked to the […]

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Mar/15

15

A Big Serve Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up To Be

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So here we are in third round matches today and a list of the Top 20 Serve Speed Tournament Leaders shows that only four of these big servers are still alive. Sam Groth hit the biggest serve at 145 mph, but he lost in the first round. Jerzy Janowicz clocked in next at 144, Harry and Sock at 141 and Izzie at 140. But of the Top 20, only Sock, Izzie, Kevin Anderson, and Nick Kyrgios are still smacking their serves.

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Ernests won his first round match today beating Daniel Gimeno-Traver 6-4, 6-1. About 30 minutes after he finished, still in his match clothes, Gulbis talked to Doug Robson of USA Today and myself about the match, his game, his coaching situation and how to beat the Top 5.

The Match with Traver:

“I was nervous the whole match. My serve saved me many times, especially in the second set, when I was a break up. I was love-40 down and I made 3 aces to come back in that game. The serve did basically 50 % of the job. The serve did 50% and then somehow I managed to break him on the return. He plays slow. His game is not fast enough. I have to adjust to his slow speed.

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Mar/15

13

The Americans Are Looking Good

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How many sunny dry pure blue skies can you take at one tennis tourney? Apparently a lot if you’re out here in Indian Wells as the good days keep on coming. I’m in the press box above the main stadium here on Sam Query is having a rather easy time with one of my favorite players on tour, Sergiy Stakhovsky. He’s up 6-2, 3-1. I just came from watching Donald Young beat Carreno-Busta and DY was showing a lot of emotion out there. His forehand is showing beautiful shape and he did something I haven’t seen done since the days of Johnny mac, taking a backhand at the baseline, chipping it down the line, racing to the net, and knifing a down the line volley for a winner. It was really nice to see.

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Mar/15

12

Fish v. Harrison–Men Start Their Engines

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The weather is hot. I don’t know about this dry/wet heat. I hit this afternoon before coming out here for 30 minutes and I was sweating bullets. They’re expecting 460,000 fans out here for IW this year, up around 30,000 from last year. I’m winded just getting my press credentials, driving all the way around the complex to park in media parking and just walking up to the media center.

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Mar/15

6

Isner-Ward Match Key For US Davis Cup Victory

10422074_934634776548692_9028433410728218268_nIt’s deep into the fourth set with Izzie up 2 sets to 1. Izzie is playing confusing tennis so far in the fourth set where I’ve picked up the match. It almost looks like he’s trying to grind Ward down on his return games. Instead of stepping up and cracking returns, and trying to end points early, he’s playing like he’s David Ferrer, just looping back returns. There’s no way Izzie can break playing such tentative tennis.

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The finals today was at 7:45 am and the boy Callum was playing had beat the No. 1 seed in the quarters. But Callum just overpowered him and out-maneuvered him and the boy got very demoralized.

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Feb/15

23

Gulbis, Dubai & The Rise of Harry

Ernests_Gulbis_02Yes, Ernie dropped No. 5 in a row losing today to Istomin in Dubai. What is happening to Ernie? He said he’s got no feel for his shots and he’s playing worse in practice now than he is in matches. Ernie hasn’t won a match in 2015 after winning 41 in 2014. He should be in the prime of his career. He’s 26. He broke into the Top 10 last year. Tennis is a funny sport.

How about Djoko saying he thinks Dubai should be a Masters Event. But I turn on the tube today watching Gasquet-Seppi and there’s like 50 people in the stands. I’ve got a feeling when I get out to Indy Wells in a couple of weeks for the first day there’s going to be like 10,000 people there if not much more.

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