I'm doing a lot of Larry Stefanki name-dropping here!
In my last post, I mentioned how I thought James Blake could've used him, and I'm about to talk about his current charge, Andy Roddick and what will be the true test of their relationship starting today. I wonder if his own family gives him this much props!
Anyway, if you didn't catch it before the tournament started, over on VANtage Point at Down the Line!, I predicted a Roger Federer-Roddick final, fully under the realization that A-Rod would have to go through Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal for that to happen. Well, today is where the first part of that mission starts with Andy and Djoko facing off in the quarters. This is really the first true test for Roddick and Stefanki, more so than that quarterfinal match at the Australian Open this year, when Djokovic retired in the fourth set.
Roddick's had a few good wins in the past few weeks against David Ferrer, Stanislas Wawrinka and Radek Stepanek. But while those three might be pretty decent, they're nowhere near the big four on the ATP tour. To be a true contender for Slams this year, and I'd even go on to say for the rest of his career, opportunities to take out big guys back-to-back at Masters series events has to be the building block for that. And this is where Stefanki will earn his paycheck.
An old friend of mine and I used to talk tennis for hours, whether it was our own games or what was happening in the pros. I've started Tennis Talk, Anyone? to, well, talk tennis with an even broader crowd! My name is Van Sias and I've been playing for 20 years now, and not only am I player, I'm a huge fan of the game as well: pro, amateur, you name it. I'll post links to news items related to the sport, and offer my own personal opinion, predictions and hopefully get some of yours as well.