Tennis Prose



McEnroe Takes Subtle Shot At Rafa Torturing Draper

An interesting verbal exchanged happened on ESPN during the Rafael Nadal vs Jack Draper Australian Open first round showdown yesterday. Rafael Nadal won in four sets 75 26 64 61.

The 21 year old Draper ranked 38 in the world, appeared to be hindered by severe cramping vs the 36 year old Spaniard.

When Draper was cramping and staggering around the court, John McEnroe asked, Why does Rafa have to do all rituals touching his shirt, etc before serving? The other guy is staggered, spent, just step up to line and serve. McEnroe was implying that Nadal enjoyed mercilessly torturing his wounded adversary – and extending the process – like a cat with a helpless mouse.

Nadal is a ruthless, vicious destroying machine, he has been created and programmed from the beginning to physically punish and destroy his opponents.

Nadal can’t stop his patterns now. He can’t change the methods he’s employed for his entire tennis career – even when an opponent is out on his feet like Draper was yesterday. Nadal’s pre-serve rituals are a created habit to control the match rhythm and sneaky way to stall the opponent, to wait and play at HIS pace. Former 1980 Sydney champion Fritz Buehning told me yesterday in a phone interview, John McEnroe had a similar habit – he would always do something when he needed a point – stall, argue, complain about a camera, create some kind of distraction, etc. Then after the delay, McEnroe’s lefty serve would hit the spot and you’d miss the return.

Nadal’s pre-serve rituals are a stall tactic on EVERY SINGLE point. But, curiously, he does not use them in practice sets.

McEnroe was master at stall tactics like Nadal but not quite as advanced. John Lloyd told another tennis journalist that McEnroe once played the argument stall card at 4-all or 5-all in a tiebreaker right before Lloyd served. It was a minutes-long classic McEnroe stall. And Lloyd admitted he lost that tiebreaker breaker.

The only tiebreaker McEnroe ever won in seven matches vs John Lloyd was their seventh and final meeting, in 1985 in San Francisco. McEnroe beat Lloyd 61 67 76. McEnroe held a perfect 7-0 record vs. Lloyd in the ATP head to head rivalry.

So perhaps John McEnroe may have won 15 Grand Slams and not seven – if he perfected a better stalling system.

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  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 5:21 pm

    I enjoy any semi derogatory comments about vax nanny Nadal who lucked out and won last year when Novak was deported. Wish nanny Murray had lost yesterday. Oh, well.

    Today watching Tennis Channel coverage about how “pleasantly surprised” unvaccinated Novak was so warmly received was nauseating.


    PS. Maybe someone will ask Nadal why CEO of Spain’s largest pharmaceutical company faked his vax status.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 5:32 pm

    Gregg, thanks for your comments. Tennis Channel has shown anti Djokovic biases in the past, to put it mildly, their reporting on Djokovic cant be trusted to be objective. Based on how the media has ignored the accusations that Giorgi faked taking the jab, it would not be a surprise if she has some kind of leverage such as knowing that the majority of wta and atp players faked taking the jab. Nadal was once an adorable champion but the innocence is gone and we are seeing the true colors emerge, he’s an obsessed ruthless vicious beast and hypocrite on the court.

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 5:35 pm

    Scoop, 6 lucky losers(?) in the men’s field is more than usual? “Injury” reasons for withdrawing suspect? Could it be from that which must not be named? Cheers

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 5:51 pm

    I always liked Nadal. Thought he was dorky for his intensity and pulling his tight shorts ‘free’ was always kind of icky. He was my least liked of the big three but I rooted for him unless he was playing at the French Open. ..

    But his preachy condemnation of those exercising free will soured me on him. And Murray as well.

    Does any player do the good shot racket clap more than Novak? Nope.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 5:59 pm

    Greg, are you implying the withdrawals are not from injury but perhaps a positive test? Not sure what you are suggesting. The withdrawal numbers are alarming. As was Carlos withdrawing over a week early and not even trying to rehab his “injury.”

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 6:02 pm

    Scoop, you think Giorgi was one of many? Weren’t there a lot of player ‘heat’ related issues last year in Oz tune up tournaments?

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 6:03 pm

    Gregg, you are right we never see Rafa applaud a great clutch shot by an opponent on a big point like Novak does. But Rafa did invent that applauding his beaten opponent as he leaves the court. Looks fake and contrived though. I used to love Rafa too when he was up and coming and trying to win Wimbledon. The whole act grew tiring though about five, six years ago. Now with Djokovic proving he’s the superior champion, Rafa hasn’t accepted the reality gracefully. The cheap shots against Djokovic in the media were borderline despicable.

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 6:04 pm

    No Scoop, not positive tests but hmmm vax related injuries/side effects.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 6:06 pm

    Gregg yes I do think Giorgi is one of many. But there’s only one the deep state establishment cares to harass and crucify about it.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 6:09 pm

    Gregg, never thought of vax side effects being a factor in tennis and hope it’s not. Chardy said he suffered from it but he’s finally returned with a big win yesterday at AO. The deep state does cover up things. Bjorkman once said the ITF covers up positive tests. Marcelo Rios said the establishment covers up positive test. The ATP investigation of Zverev which began in late 2021 was also obviously covered up. so…

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 6:09 pm

    Scoop, enjoy you site. Don’t visit as often as I should. Be back more often. You’re a rational voice speaking about one of my favorite sports. Peace

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 6:31 pm

    Why did Novak get singled out last year? He’s a good guy. Maybe he spoke his mind to loudly? Too smart and articulate I guess. They even went after the players at his Serbian tournament and ‘found’ positive test results. Strange not strange….

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 6:39 pm

    Thanks Greg, I try to make this tennis site special and great as much as I can. Thanks for supporting it.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 6:41 pm

    Gregg, the tennis deep state is anti Djokovic. The corporate power behind Federer, Nadal and ATP and many other forces, media, all may have conspired to destroy Djokovic last year with the relentless smear campaign and political moves which all harmed him the most. But the goliath failed and “David” became greater, stronger, wiser. The Lord works in mysterious ways.

  • Gregg · January 17, 2023 at 6:43 pm

    One last question. Fritz? Saw him play down the street at a tournament in Houston in 18(?). Does he have a chance? Snuck up on me how good he’s playing.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 17, 2023 at 7:56 pm

    Gregg, Fritz can do it and he’s one of my top picks. I actually just wrote this article about it…

  • Sam · January 18, 2023 at 1:45 am

    But, curiously, he does not use them in practice sets.

    Wow—that says it all. 😲

    Anyway, guess his stall tactics didn’t work today, Scoop. So . . . would you still consider him the favorite for Roland Garros? 😉

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 18, 2023 at 8:42 am

    Sam, and Sharapova didn’t grunt in practice either. I think Nadal is done and has been done since Wimbledon win vs Fritz…

    Rafa Nadals last 9 competitive matches….

    McDonald L
    Draper W
    De Minaur L
    Norrie L
    Ruud W
    Felix L
    Fritz L
    Paul L
    Tiafoe L

    2-7, worst run of his career.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 18, 2023 at 8:45 am

    Nadal is the greatest injury faker in the history of sports. An American tennis coach in Delray Beach FL told me a quote a few years ago which was proven last night, “Mackenzie McDonald has the best strokes of all the American players.”

  • Sam · January 23, 2023 at 2:13 am

    Nadal is the greatest injury faker in the history of sports

    Funny, Scoop, how his “injuries” always clear up just in time for clay season. 😉

    Didn’t know that about Sharapova. Did Seles ever grunt in practice?

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 23, 2023 at 8:13 am

    Not sure about Seles Sam, good question. I forgot the few times I did see her practice. I can ask some people I know who did train with her.

  • Sam · January 23, 2023 at 11:23 pm

    Yes, that would be interesting to know, Scoop.

  • Scoop Malinowski · January 24, 2023 at 8:46 am

    The last practice I saw with Maria was at US Open about five years ago, when Nick showed up on court and was watching her from the side by the net post and she totally ignored him. I was curious to see how she would react to seeing Nick show up at her practice. I took a photo of Nick that day watching Maria and it’s the cover of my new book about Nick Bollettieri. It was on new grandstand at US Open. And come to think of it, Maria was not grunting that day at all )



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