Tennis Prose



Andre Sa Recalls Playing Henman At Wimbledon

A forgotten Wimbledon classic match on Center Court was the 2002 quarterfinal showdown between Tin Henman and Brazilian Andre Sa.

Henman was ranked no. 5 in the world and in the midst of “Henmania”, the electrifying two weeks of Wimbledon when all of England and the tabloid and news media fervently hyped up and celebrated Tim Henman’s near impossible latest quest to conquer and win Wimbledon. In 2002 “Tiger Tim” was just three matches from becoming the first British player to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936. Sa, at the time was ranked 90 in the world and playing the best singles tennis of his life, but he generally was considered an easy stepping stone to the semifinals. However the red-hot Sa, who had beaten Antony Dupuis, Flavio Saretta, Stefan Koubek and Feliciano Lopez had other ideas.

Sa remembers the match as he told Betway Insider. “I played the crowd favorite Tim Henman at Wimbledon in 2002, that made it really tough. I remember 2002 was the World Cup year and Brazil played England in the quarterfinal. And the crowd was going crazy. I had the full Centre Court, 15,000 people cheering against me. When I won the second set (7-5), that’s when things got tricky. I think the crowd started worrying a little bit. Then in the third set I started off with an early break.”

“And the crowd was really getting nervous because it had been a long time since a Brit had won Wimbledon, playing the way he played, serving and volleying all the time. Playing really aggressive. He didn’t give me much time. At the end of the day I think he played better than me.”

After three hours and ten minutes, Henman ultimately prevailed 63 57 64 63 and marched into the semifinals where Australian Lleyton Hewitt awaited him. Hewitt ended Henman’s hopes and dreams with a masterful 75 61 75 victory (and then Hewitt defeated Argentina’s David Nalbandian in the final in three sets). Henman was never able to go all the way at Wimbledon, twice falling short in the semifinals.

Sa is well known as a gentleman player and also an accomplished ATP doubles champion. He faced an impossible task that afternoon in 2002, versus a fully inspired Tim Henman and the full stadium of 15,000, not to mention the subliminal pressure of overcoming the will of the entire nation of Great Britain which collectively all wanted to see Tim Henman, not Andre Sa, to win Wimbledon.

Sa achieved an excellent ATP career, he won eleven ATP doubles titles and competed professionally all the way until age 40. His final professional match was in 2018 in the quarterfinals of the Sao Paulo tournament, a 76 75 loss to Federico Delbonis and Maximo Gonzalez. Sa’s best result in a Grand Slam in doubles was SF in 2007 at Wimbledon.

Andre Sa.

Henman concluded his ATP career in 2007 also with eleven ATP titles in singles. His final match was in Davis Cup, a doubles loss with young Jamie Murray vs Croatia’s Marin Cilic and Lovro Zovko 46 64 76 75.

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  • catherine · July 5, 2022 at 4:01 am

    W’don related….

    There was a conflagration in Bromley, London, a couple of days ago. Rumour has it that Raducanu was making a bonfire of her tennis gear. She’s going in for motorcross now.

    I liked her cheeky farewell to the press corps. She really doesn’t have respect for any of them.

  • Scoop Malinowski · July 5, 2022 at 7:33 am

    Catherine, I did not hear that Raducanu burned her tennis gear. I did hear her answer that stupid question about pressure when she said she feels no pressure, she already has won a US Open. Hardly surprising she’s had enough of the fake news agenda driven tennis media. It’s so obvious now how rigged the media is, look at the lousy tennis media badgering and hammering Nick for his alleged bullying in the Tsitsipas match but they are silent on Nadal’s bullying vs Sonego, even Wimbledon has erased the Sonego press conference as they don’t want Sonego’s criticism being exposed to the public, they want to protect Rafa’s fake image. Rafa was not even fined for breaking the rules and bullying Sonego. It’s now a fact the fake tennis media runs on rigged narratives and they celebrate and never criticize certain players (Nadal, Federer, Serena, etc) and they target others (Zverev, Novak, etc.) Respect for the tennis media is at an all time low. Raducanu has every right to be disgusted by the tennis media already.

  • catherine · July 5, 2022 at 8:02 am

    Scoop – I was joking 🙂 There was a fire in Bromley, but it was in a business centre and nowhere near where Emma lives.

    I’m not so bothered about rigging in the media, whether it exists or not, rather the absolute dreary repetitiveness of the questions and that’s something that hasn’t changed in decades. Here’s a kid (and yes she is a kid still) with a stratospheric IQ and interesting take on the game and it’s the SOSO.

    At the end of Emma’s last press conference a Chinese journalist asked her a question in Mandarin and she answered in Mandarin – she then informed the bemused press corps ‘You didn’t understand that’, didn’t bother to translate and skipped happily out of the press room. Duty done.

  • Scoop Malinowski · July 5, 2022 at 9:40 am

    Love it Catherine, the kid is already sticking it to the fake news media. Hit and run. Kyrgios had a nice victory the other day over a woman reporter trying to provoke him, also the idiot badgering him about wearing red shoes and colored cap onto and off the court. Absurd the tennis media would focus on such irrelevant topics.



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