Day 1 of the Australian Open was a long one, for the players and for my neck. My office is apparently not ergonomically set up for someone to watch ESPN2 from 6:30 pm to 3:00 am while simultaneously watching 3 live streams on the computer, and tracking scores on the AO website, but, I do it out of love.
Enough about me, lets talk tennis Doozies and D'ohs (you know, like Homer Simpson?)
Doozies (Matches that went the distance):
Monfils vs de Bakker: Gael Monfils, the number 12 seed, looked as though he was going to make hasty exit from the AO, down 2 sets to love against 22 year-old up-and-comer Thiemo de Bakker. However, De Bakker turned into De Bacle (thanks Brad Gilbert) when he seemed to choke as he tried serve out the match at 5-3. Gael ultimately took the match 6-7 (5-7), 2-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-1 in 3.5 hours.
In his presser, Gael basically said that de Bakker tanked:
But I know Thiemo a bit. I know sometimes he snaps in the head … It's a weakness for him, so you play with that.
De Bakker would disagree:
At 4-1 in the third, when I went for a ball, came a little bit in my groin, like a traction, so from that moment I had problems to play rallies and to serve.
And when he broke me back, I knew it was pretty much going to be tough.
I want to get a fight there, but if it's not possible - the body says no - there's not much I can do.
Mental or physical? Probably a bit of both, but, we'll never know.
Mardy Fish vs Victor Hanescu: Fish, who had blood work done this week due to fatigue, was also down 2 sets to love against Hanescu, but the Number 16 seed dug deep and won in 5, 2-6, 4-6, 6-3, 7-5, 7-3. Apparently the 19th time is a charm (he had been 0-18 in coming back two sets down in his career.)
Other interesting men's 5-setters: Albert Montanes over Dustin Brown, Ivan Dodig over Ivo Karlovic, and Phillip Kohlschreiber over Tobias Kamke
*And really ladies......there were just too many 3 setters to even count, and that is that.
Sam Querry vs. Lukasz Kubot: Kubot sent the number 18th seed packing in a tight 5 set match, 5-7, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1, 7-6. I know I shouldn't be surprised considering his frequent 1st round loses at Slams, but I am, but I'm not, but really....... I AM. The only good part of the match? Kubot's jig after winning.
Photo: Getty Images
Nikolay Davydenko vs Florian Myer: Davydenko who was a quarterfinalist last year, was taken out in 4 sets, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6, 6-4. After his recent win over Rafael Nadal in Doha, I had expected him to do well in the AO. Well, thanks for nothing Kolya....... for the record, because of your loss, my bracket is SCREWED! (Because it's all about me right?)
Top Seeds: Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Andy Roddick, Fernando Verdasco, Caroline Wozniacki, Victoria Azarenka, Venus Williams, and Francesca Schiavone all advanced.
For Today's Order of Play, click here.