Sam Querrey tried to play hookie from his press conference today after his first round loss to Lukas Lacko at the SAP Open in San Jose, CA where he was a semi-finalist last year. He is now is 0-3 for 2011, so while his frustration is understandable, press conferences are mandatory for seeded players. It was later tweeted that he was dragged back by the ATP and he did his press like a good boy.
In other SAP Open news:
Yesterday, in his first tournament since October 2010, James Blake won his first round match against Jesse Levine 6-5, 6-1. After dealing with shoulder and knee injuries for the last 2 seasons he says he now feels healthy and has renewed desire to make a comeback. (Check out a great article about his comeback here.) I'd love to see Blake make a run here, but he has a fairly large roadblock in the 2nd round named Milos Raonic, the Canadian rising star who took out Xavier Malisse in the 1st round. As much as I like Milos, I'll be part of the J-Block tomorrow.
Speaking of Milos, he is writing a blog while at the SAP Open, and talked about meeting his idol Pete Sampras:
I got to meet Pete Sampras yesterday. It was really amazing. It's two different things, growing up watching so much of one guy, then meeting the person behind the game. He was really nice. He gave me some well-thought out tips. For me, it was an unbelievable experience, especially when you're coming up and getting to the point where you meet your idols. It means a lot.
And he also blogged about his upcoming match against James Blake:
Speaking of players you grow up watching, my next match is against James Blake. It's nice playing these guys you used to watch. I think I'll have an advantage - I'll know him more than he'll know me! So I'll use that as much as I can. I know he'll go for his shots. I'll just take care of my serve and hopefully I'll get a few chances on the return. I look forward to it.
And if you didn't catch it, Pete Sampras and Gael Monfils opened up the tournament with an exhibition match that produced some really entertaining tennis. Monfils won 7-6 (4), 6-4, but Pete showed that at age 39 he still had game, although at the end he looked like he needed some O2. He was clearly impressed with Monfils:
I played against a lot of good movers in my day, but he was one of the best I've ever played. It was incredible. He slides like 8-feet long. He's got a great future.
but for the future:
Next year, I hope I can play McEnroe or Agassi, someone a little more my age.
See the post-match video here:
Tonight, Fernando Verdasco and Gael Monfils will play their first round matches starting at 7pm PST.