The Fall of Clay

Folks, that’s a double entendre. You know I don’t like clay; and we have the European clay season taking place in the fall. Work with me.

I love the title.

Djokovic’s 5th Rome Masters, his 36th 1000 title, of course . . . that title. 😀

Let me make this post as short and as poignant as possible.

I watched as much of Rome as I could. But I didn’t see enough.

Djokovic looked a bit discombobulated, perhaps a hangover from Defaultgate, early clay jitters, etc. But in those critical spots, he was the Djoker.

Two that stand-out: down 15-40 and 4-5 on Ruud’s serve in the first set. That was the death knell of the Norwegian, though let’s give a shout-out to the Ruud youngster of some Norwegian tennis legacy. Nice little snappy FH and tough dirt work ethic on that one. Nice to see, for sure. But two SP on a frustrated and rough around the edges Serbian minister of defense?

The other spot was early in the final against Diego, just a delight of a clay artisan. Way off was Novak, loses two service games, down 0-3 and then said #1 in the world comes to fruition.

When Djokovic is in that kind of form, still watch. Just focus on those big points, big serves, whether his or his opponent’s, between sips of your brew (coffee or other), to see the light. A true spectacle.

I saw Nadal go down a set to Diego and seemingly right the ship in the second, get on serve, look a bit more determined, but I didn’t see the racquet tap, Diego’s first win against everyone’s clay mentor.

Diego . . . love the kid. Clay certainly has a charm, folks.

Loved watching the Shapovalov run in Rome. Great tennis. Youzhny in the box is such a good look. Quick question: who you got in this Russian great survey: Youzhny or Safin? It’s a land-slide on mainstream metrics, but I always really enjoyed the OHBH class of Mikhail.

One handers, ladies and gentlemen. The new mutants, the genius reach of humanity that will save this forlorn sport of ours. 🙂

More to come. Can’t wait for Roland Garros!

Peace!

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