Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Can You Hear The Drums, Fernandos?

I don't know if you ever see the division of dirtballers from other tennis players any place more than right now, in the gap between the Australian Open and Indian Wells. The next Slam may be the French, but the real focus is very much still on the hard courts right now in the lead up to the massive Indian Wells/Miami double header...

...unless you're playing on the South and Central American swing, where it's all dirtball, all the way.

This little claycourt season isn't anywhere near as superfluous as the one after Wimbledon, which serves absolutely no purpose. But still, I'm not sure why there's so much clay play when Roland Garros is this far off. Actually, to be more specific, I'm not sure why there's so much clay play when there's a grand total of four weeks of grass play in the year. Why does clay get six months odd and why does grass get so little?

Anyway. What I was trying to say is that a lot of the guys playing on clay this week - dudes like Fernando Verdasco and Fernando Gonzalez and all those others (I'm just going to call them the Fernandos) who really should be training for Indian Wells and Miami are playing in Acapulco, and they really shouldn't be.

I mean, it's February. It's a little early to be training for Roland Garros, and I can see no other reason for these guys to be playing on clay. For the real dedicated dirtballers, who really don't have any other way, I guess I get it, but players like the Fernandos have decent chances in the hard court double header and should be playing like it. I'm not sure I understand the rationale behind their decisions to play this tournament.


Yolita said...

I think it depends on the player. I'm sure Querrey and Isner were trying to get some practice on clay as preparation for their Davis Cup match against Serbia, which will be played on clay.

There are some pragmatic reasons, too. If you're good on clay and you can get some points playing on clay, why not?

I also wanted to tell you that your blog is one of my favourite tennis blogs. I never miss it and always enjoy reading it!

Karen said...

Two words: Appearance Fee

Tennis Talk, Anyone? said...

Jodi, I was thinking the exact same thing, watching Verdasco fall to Monaco just a few minutes ago. I think Karen hit it on the nose because why would he go hit the clay when he's been in the U.S. for a few weeks now playing indoors? He wanted to practice playing outside? Acapulco's not going to help him with IW.