Tennis Prose



Djokovic Dad Says Federer “is envious” of Novak

Srdjan Djokovic has been quiet for a number of years but lately he has come out shooting from the hip with his lip.

Poppa Djokovic is dismayed with the media portrayal of his son and Roger Federer. “Federer is an outstanding tennis player but I could not say that about his humanity,” he told the Serbian newspaper Novosti. “Federer has been jealous of Novak since the moment he made his breakthrough because he knew that my son was better than him and that he would tower over him.”

The elder Djokovic has irritated the Swiss maestro with his words on other occasions, such as the match at Rome Masters when Federer barked to Djokovic’s father to “be quiet” during their match.

“It is unbelievable what everything is written about Novak. Nobody in the history of sport, not just tennis, accepts defeats like Novak. If he loses, he goes to his opponents on his own, congratulates them, kisses them and tells them, Master you were better than me today. And yet he has never received a fair play award like it is constantly handed over to Federer.”

“Novak will become the greatest tennis player of all time in the next two or three years.”



  • Scoop Malinowski · February 26, 2020 at 6:05 pm

    She is a hard worker, she produces. I’m going to listen this week.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 26, 2020 at 6:36 pm

    Jerzy Janowicz and Ernests Gulbis both won two rounds in Pau Challenger!

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 7:15 pm

    Enjoyed Match Point Canada-Brad Gilbert podcast. Excellent listen – I go back and forth on Brad Gilbert – the fact is Brad Gilbert knows his tennis, he must be a truly great coach to work with and I am sorry more players haven’t consulted him, even to get Gilbert’s take on THEIR game – to see it through his eyes. The very least that the players can do is listen to his podcast interviews.

    Interesting how he talks about players and it’s amusing (to me) how protective the Match Point Canada hosts are of Andreescu! You can tell the acting assumption is: there’s Andreescu and then there’s everyone else. It’s how Gilbert sees things as well. I find it a little rich to look at the Australian Open that way though – there’s always a drop off in level for players, and it’s rare for players to back up a big slam win with another big one as Osaka did (see Osaka now!). Gilbert put it best when he said if you look at Andreescu from age 15 to now you see that injuries have hurt her more than anything. She has a game and a style that hurts.

    That said they make an effort especially on the women’s side to go deep on the top ten WTA players.

    I thought Gilbert’s comments on the Canadian men were good as well. They should all take a listen, though he didn’t go as much into the “older vets” who I believe have proven this year that they are interested in their own careers. As John Isner once said famously:

    “I am out here playing for myself first”

    No need to be a doormat.

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 8:18 pm

    Chile, Caspar Ruud now QF…kid may be ambitious.

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    Tignor, piece on Sharapova. Good article. Indeed the ultimate competitor, with or without meldonium.

  • Hartt · February 26, 2020 at 8:49 pm

    Regarding the Match Point Canada podcast, if you are a Canadian tennis fan, there is Andreescu and then everyone else!

    I find the Match Point Canada podcasts vary in quality, but I generally enjoy them. Their last episode has an interview with the former manager of the Canadian band, The Tragically Hip, Jake Gold, a huge tennis fan. Gold had some fun stories, like when he went to Australia with Daniel Nestor, officially as Nestor’s “coach” but really to support his friend who was due to win his 1000th match.

    Gold said his best tennis memory was playing doubles with Kim Clijsters in a pro-am match at the Rogers Cup. it was when Kim had made her comeback, and there were 7,000 fans watching.

    They discussed Canadian tennis topics such as how FAA can do better (basically improve his net game), etc.

    We’ve gone from almost no info on Canadian tennis to at least two podcasts and a few websites. With probably more to come!

  • Hartt · February 26, 2020 at 8:52 pm

    Tommy Paul just defeated Zverev in SS.

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 8:58 pm

    Canada’s sportswriters have a tennis beat too. I enjoyed the op-eds and reporting. If there aren’t a lot of kids including good athletes in Canada now looking seriously at tennis I’d be surprised. The country should milk it for what it’s worth, do some exos in the provinces. Who WOULDN’T want to see that?

    In the UK they messed up not maxing the chance to promote the sport when Murray was in good health. Then again now at the ends of his career he will have more time to do this. They missed the chance when he was younger, but I can’t imagine it was easy given he was in Florida.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 26, 2020 at 9:21 pm

    I was doing biofile with Tommy Paul at us open 3 yrs ago. Paul won a qualies match. We’re talking and Zverev walked by and silently congratulated the Paul win. Now Paul beats Zverev.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 26, 2020 at 9:58 pm

    Volynets won the first set vs Zarazua then her serve fell apart. Never saw a pro serve so badly, one didn’t even reach the not. many in the bottom of the net. There is a girl who needs to throw the football 20 minutes a day.

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 10:11 pm

    Humbert v Fritz in Acapulco. Fritz kind of needs this to save his season. Too much pressure to “start” winning in IW/Miami.

    Brad Gilbert, Rubin, Eubanks, Baker all had interesting things to say about winning. I love that Gilbert told Andre Agassi all he had to do was win a close match and he’d be in good shape for a tournament. I love that. Agassi said why would he want that? Gilbert said because it builds confidence that grows from having toughed out a win. It was more the attitude.

    And a sweet win for Tommy Paul. He came through qualies so yet again when he has a few matches under his belt and a few wins he’s almost a different player. Also erases that bitter feeling of losing. As they say winning cures losing!

  • Andrew Miller · February 26, 2020 at 10:17 pm

    Tommy Paul, sweet shotmaking – almost French! Gotta hand it to the kid, under good coaches he is getting better. Most exciting shotmaking in US men’s tennis since DY. I hope Tommy Paul, Tiafoe keep it up. I root for all of them. I’d like to see Eubanks and his beautiful one hander go far. Lots of wishful thinking.

    That said, the Tommy Paul game is sweet. It’s unique to see a little guy do that much with the ball. Opelka may be the future, but Tommy Paul I hope grows to be a fan favorite because of his game.

    Zverev will want to get Paul back for this one. Such a thorough beat down. Perhaps Zverev has been at the beach.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 26, 2020 at 10:19 pm

    “I found out that winning in tennis does not bring joy…it brings pressure.” – Michael Chang a year after winning Roland Garros.

  • Jeff · February 26, 2020 at 11:14 pm

    Great quote by Chang.

    I should have predicted on here that Tommy Paul would win that match but I didn’t.

    Bottom half of the bracket has Paul facing Isner and Fritz vs. Edmund. So US has a great chance of a finalist in this event. Good thing all these guys were on the opposite side of the draw from Rafa.

    How about Struff beating Basilashvili 1 and 0? That is a stunning score. Struff ranked No. 34 and Bash No. 29 yet the German won an astounding 53 of 73 points. What happened?

  • Jeff · February 26, 2020 at 11:21 pm

    Tommy Paul is 4-0 against Top 50 this year, beating Cuevas, Ramos-Vinolas, Dimitrov and now Zverev.

    Isner better watch out.

  • Jeff · February 26, 2020 at 11:29 pm

    I wonder if the ATP sleuths monitor social media because Kyrgios posted an Instagram story sticking his middle finger up to the crowd and insulting the Mexicans. He has since deleted it but I imagine this would be a violation of his probation.

    His latest Instastory is a congratulatory post to buddy Tommy Paul. This confirms why he pulled out last weekend in Delray since he didn’t want to play him.

    I have to say, this is what I admire the most about Roger. He is good buddies with Wawrinka but never stopped him from setting out to destroy him every time they met. But Fed and Stan are from a different generation; methinks millennials don’t have that killer instinct to beat everyone in sight and this is why the Big 3 continue to dominate. This NextGen is too concerned with social media and being friends with everyone – I do think Tsitsipas is the exception

  • Jeff · February 26, 2020 at 11:35 pm

    The Reddit community to the rescue as they screengrabbed Kyrgios’ Instagram. He posted “No wonder this country doesn’t have any good players.” with a middle finger emoji.

    I think he should definitely be suspended now.

  • Jon King · February 26, 2020 at 11:41 pm

    Scoop, we have watched Volynets from when she was little. Nice girl. But I always thought she should have gone the college route. Only the top 120 or so women can make money in pro tennis and she is highly unlikely to be able to reach that level and sustain it.

    Her serve pretty much becomes that of a 12 year old when she gets rattled.

  • catherine · February 27, 2020 at 1:20 am

    Night tennis: Muguruza and Yastremska started playing around midnight and Barty/Muguruza is also the last match on. This is ridiculous scheduling and I don’t know why players don’t complain. ATP just as bad – matches ending 4 am. Who benefits ? TV ?

    Yastremska served 8 df v Mugs. Garbine let Dayana just beat herself. Sascha didn’t look pleased.

    BTW – re these new coaching rules in WTA – I’ve seen several full matches this week and haven’t noticed any difference at all. Maybe a bit of signalling from the box but nothing worth all the fuss.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 27, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Jon. Worst pro serve I ever saw. I see 3.5 women serve better. Who did she beat in 1r?

  • Hartt · February 27, 2020 at 7:27 am

    There are two youngsters who are friends but who will battle it out on the court, FAA and Shapo. Each has won against the other in important tourneys, and Shapo creamed his buddy at last year’s USO.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 27, 2020 at 7:28 am

    Chang’s quote about pressure more realistic than bjks “pressure is a privilege” phooey.

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 8:22 am

    Those start times absurd. I’ve seen late times that are reasonable where the matches end after midnight, even well after, but those Doha times are terrible. That said, they are being compensated richly – whatever they earned last night is a small fortune, staying up late is still staying up late, but they get paid. Doha I bet pays huge appearance fees and the expectation is if in the draw you go with it.

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 8:24 am

    And Wawrinka, his best doormat impression.

  • Hartt · February 27, 2020 at 8:38 am

    With Genie in a never-ending slump and Bianca with never-ending injuries, thank goodness there is a bright spot with a female Canadian player, Leylah Annie Fernandez.

    “Leylah Annie Fernandez just doesn’t know how to lose right now.

    Less than 24 hours after her second-ever WTA main draw win, she made it a third on Wednesday night, crushing eight-seeded Nao Hibino 6-3, 6-0 to advance to the quarter-finals of the Abierto Mexicano Telcel presented by HSBC.” (Tennis Canada)

    She also had to play qualies at that tourney. She just moved up over 30 spots to No.158. Because this is her first full year on the main WTA tour, she doesn’t have many points to defend.

  • catherine · February 27, 2020 at 9:24 am

    Hartt – impressive from Leylah Anne but I’m still concerned she’s a little small to make her mark at the highest level. However we can hope – at least she’s not getting injured (so far).

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 9:47 am

    True. I was thinking of Canada’s WTA prospects. Saw some of the Fernandez/Hibino match. Fernandez burning off a lot of nervous energy between points. She has a nice fast trigger on her forehand, but it’s also the shot that she has less control on. All I can say is the weather must be nice in Mexico, the courts look great there and it seems like a good event.

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 11:07 am

    ATP Dubai, Evans d. Rublev in 2; Struff and Tsitsipas locked in a three setter.

    ATP Chile – Interesting Garin vs Davidovitch-F. Can the Spanish next genner beat Garin on his home court in Chile? Garin is career high #18.

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 11:08 am

    Fernandez-Potapova in Mexico – fireworks. Excellent match for two notable up and coming players, and bragging rights as well. Match Point Canada should be all over this one!

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 11:12 am

    Acapulco: Fritz d. Humbert, 6-4 6-1. That is a blow-out. Humbert had been playing so well, and Fritz desperately needed this win. Maybe Fritz should play more from this desperate perspective because that’s a Class A take-down.

  • Harold · February 27, 2020 at 11:31 am


    Who, outside the big 3, and under 30 years old, has the best volley?

  • Andrew Miller · February 27, 2020 at 12:25 pm

    Tsitsipas or Medvedev? They seem to have some bravery at net and good hands/quick reflexes.

  • Hartt · February 27, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    Catherine, Leylah Annie Fernandez is an interesting case. She is small, and not likely to get any bigger. But seeing how she dominated Bencic in their Fed Cup match makes me optimistic. Bencic was not playing badly, but Fernandez was so aggressive and so accurate with her shots that Bencic could not even get into the match. Belinda had high praise for the youngster after that match.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 27, 2020 at 12:56 pm

    Stuff has best volleys.

  • catherine · February 27, 2020 at 2:20 pm


    Clijsters gets WC for Indian Wells.

  • catherine · February 27, 2020 at 4:39 pm

    Not a good evening for Mugs who loses in 3 to Barty 1-6 7-6 2-6 – Ash meets Kvitova. My bet is Ashleigh will win the trophy. She looked fresh in this match after time off since AO.

  • Hartt · February 27, 2020 at 7:00 pm

    Cressy is playing the Calgary Challenger this week, after just winning the one in Drummondville. He got a w/o today. Pospisil lost his first round match. Not a surprise because he had to travel all the way from Europe. It was good of him to fulfill his commitment to the tourney, Vasek has played a lot of tennis lately and must be pretty tired.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 27, 2020 at 8:05 pm

    Cressy has a one way ticket to the top 50.

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