Seriously, where has Nicolas Mahut been all my life? Even when he loses, he does it very stylishly. And I love a dude with a sense of humour.
Please, Australian Open, if you have a spare wildcard lying around - maybe you left one under the sofa or something - give it to Nicolas Mahut. This dude gets so ripped off all the time, and he plays such awesome tennis. He has MAD SKILLZ. Come on, he's all famous now, after the whole Wimbledon shenanigan. He got shafted by his own federation, who gave the French wildcard to Benoit 'who?' Paire. Have some mercy. Support Nico.
He pushed Andy Murray all the way in the match in Perth tonight. I doubt Andy Murray knew what hit him at some points, to be honest. I know Nicolas is a grass court specialist, but he has some skillz on the hard courts too. He has a good tennis brain, some skillful shots and French flair, which is a wonderful combination - to watch, even if he doesn't always pull it off.
Nico isn't exactly up and coming. He's not the next big thing, he's never going to be in the top ten, he's not going to win a Slam. But he's exactly the kind of player that people like to watch. He has shots and style and he deserves to catch a break. Seriously, he has such extreme bad luck it is not fair. That Wimbledon match? Just the tip of the iceberg.
I meant to actually talk about the match a bit, instead of writing a plea for wildcardishness. Oops. Let's do that now. Whoever thought it would take Andy Murray two tiebreakers to see away Nico? And this match so easily could have gone to three sets... if Nico hadn't missed that shot at 5-all in the breaker in the second set I think it just might have. It was a very close match, and Nico deserved a set... but such is tennis, I suppose.
Watching him play, it makes you wonder how he is not ranked higher. Sure, he is a bit sketchy and has a few problems with execution sometimes, but he has got shots. And his first serve is right up there. There are plenty of players who don't have a serve as good as his. And if you want to know reliable it is, ask John Isner.
I'm glad that Mahut got the chance to play in the Hopman Cup. He is a wonderful character. And I love to watch him play, and I hope I'm not the only one. WILDCARD FOR MAHUT 2011. Spread the word.
Roger: older and not quite out
6 months ago