Friday, February 20, 2009

Dubai: the center of the tennis universe

Venus Williams just won a match as close as close can get against her sister Serena Williams in the semifinals of the much-talked-about, much-maligned tournament in Dubai.

I guess Dubai is as much a home for as Wimbledon now: It looks like she just can't lose out there after having just won the season-ending championships last year. Over at VANtage Point, I was going with Dinara Safina to come through. So much for that call!

Anyway, how about that Dubai, huh? Did you ever think you'd see a tournament pop up in the news as much as this one did? No Shahar Peer, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal bail, Andy Ram gets a visa, threatened sanctions: You name it, it's happened. I've been pretty busy this week and hadn't been able to throw in my two cents on only one of the biggest stories of the year so far, but here goes:

Peer has the right to play where she wants, and if it's up to the tournament to be more diligent in regard to security and fan protests, then so be it. The organizers made an agreement with the tour to hold this event: Live up to it and do right by the players. Things are a lot more complicated, of course, and I hope I'm not giving too simplistic a response, I just felt I needed to say something about the issue.

As for Roger and Rafa, I have mixed feelings on these two and the tournament. I don't know what's up with Rog; that's going to be a lot of time he's taking off. Hope he gets better. As for Rafa, I'm glad to hear he's saving up for Davis Cup. I wish Federer could've gotten out there as well.

(Photo: AFP)


RiCH said...

Good point on V being dominant recently in that area. She's on a roll and let it be known in her CNN special she's ready to knock ReRe outta of WTA Penthouse.

It was such a crazy week in terms of off-court news that the actual tourneys lost a lot of buzz...sometimes I forgot Marseille was happening!

Anyway, the ship will be righted starting on Davis Cup weekend and when March Madness begins. No fear!

Shelia said...

Hey Van!

This was one strange situation. I was sorry to see it happen. You want to be known for your craft, not for being the object of a controversy; especially when you had nothing to do with it!

I was glad to read that Peer and, I forget the young ladies name who was supposed to be her doubles partner, were both paid the average of their winnings based upon tournaments they played last year. That takes a bit of the sting off. It was a free $44,000 + payday for Peer.

Now the hilarious part of the whole thing, to me at least, is that Barclays Dubai is considering appealing the fine! Wow...

I love seeing Venus like this. She has always been a pleasure of power to watch. She's so serene while she's kicking your butt, lol.

Naf said...

Hi, Van! You know what will make someone play well? Lots and lots of money! :) Seriously, Venus is looking great and I really think she's the one who's more motivated than Serena. We'll see!

van said...

Hey everyone! You know, I thought Venus was going to be that way at the Aussie, but it didn't happen for her there. There's no reason she shouldn't dominate on every surface.