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Wednesday, 01 September 2021


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I don't know. I pay little attention to tennis. However, my dad loved watching it in the 80's and I remember watching Bjorn Borg vs Conners and McEnroe in various matches. I think I rooted for McEnroe just because he was an underdog an Borg seemed like a bulldozer (but that could have been how the media played it up back then).

Think this is a neophile / neophobe thing: your criteria are aimed at neophobes. For me, well if I go into some dark club, and there is a band playing music I can't understand, singing in a language I don't know and using instruments I do not recognise: this is the best.

I do not follow tennis, because I can understand the rules: the most important thing any person can do is to avoid be interested in things they understand.

I just root for the Spaniards. And, not for any of the reasons you've listed above.

I like the fact they don't whine, complain, or behave like the unmitigated *ss that Djokovic has been the last 5 years.

They just get on with the job. Competitors that underestimate these guys do so at their own peril.

Always been a huge fan of Rafael Nadal, and before he retired, David Ferrer, but also always pull for Pablo Carrreño Busta and Roberto Baustista-Agut.

Carreño Busta took out Djokovic in the Olympics to win the Bronze Medal, a match where Djokovic, once again, went absolutely mental, and disgraced the Olympic spirit and ideals.

"Robby Bats" just took out Kyrios last night.

Vamos, hombres!

[Hmm, rooting on the basis of maturity. Guess you don't like that Greek guy then! --Mike]

I used to read the news on 99.3 FM, WFRD, at Dartmouth. As a private challenge I would pick Tennis stories, to see if I could sight read the names for the first time live on air. Same for hockey recaps.

[You've got to admit some of the names are pretty great, for instance "Botic Van De Zandschulp." And tonight I watched highlights of Felix Auger-Aliassime vs. Bernabe Zapata Miralles. I would frankly rather have gone through life as "Bernabe Zapata Johnston" a lot more than just plain vanilla Mike. As I recall I wrote an article once about Ted Morgan, who wanted a "normal" American name and gave up his birth name, which was Count Sanche Charles Armand Gabriel de Gramont AKA Sanche de Gramont. The point was that if he didn't want his former name any more, I would take it. --Mike]

Is Serbia East European?

Djokovic is on record saying he would not take the Covid vaccine. That's all I need to know.

Don’t miss the story about how Agassi and his coach figured out which side, left or right, was Boris Becker going to serve and how he told him, many years later when they met in a beer tent during Oktoberfest. So funny...

"A Quick Guide to Who I'll Root For"

No One, not in any sport.


I've actually been watching some of the US Open; it was one of my father's sports (along with soccer).

I do sometimes find myself caring who wins a bit, but the whole "rooting for" thing I don't entirely understand. I want to watch some good tennis, that's what I want out of the time spent.

The commentators keep referring to the players by first names, when only last names are shown on the screen, resulting in my sometimes having no idea who they are talking about for long stretches of time.

[Just a hint, the score will usually show a little yellow dot next to the player who is serving. That way you can tell who is who.

I do wish there were a rule that the players can't dress identically! It makes watching highlight hard when it happens, because they're switching from side to side and from serving to returning with just a cut, and it's easy to become confused. (But talk about first-world problems.) --Mike]

Richard Krajicek

I can pronounce his last name (3)
Same home country, city even (1)
Same native language (1)
I know of his fame, winning Wimbledon is apparently an achievement (1). I know this, because it was all over the news.
In the same summer another guy from the same country, city, Michael Boogerd, won one etappe in the Tour de France. I couldn’t miss it because, again, it was all over the news.

I never watched tennis on TV. In the 'eighties I used to watch road cycling, my favourite was Paris–Roubaix, aka the Hell of the North.

As a left-handed person, handedness is an absolutely overriding factor to root for one player over another.

Hi Mike!
I made it into Featured Comments! To see Rome and to die! Will make a print :-)
I knew all those players you mention. In my young days I even tried to become a tennis player. It meant one hour ride by bus, then one hour to prepare (clay) courts, then one hour play without a trainer (no wall, just "play" with my equally unskilled friend), one hour preparing courts, one hour by bus. My partner and me did not persevere...
Take your time with those stereo things. I just rekindled my hobby (kids have left the house and I am allowed to listen to what I want) and am building loudspeakers. I have B&W about 50cm high, but am wondering, what bigger (means big) loudspeakers can do. DIY I can afford.

Guess what? That "Greek guy", the No. 3 seed, was just taken out by...a Spanish tennis player, Carlos Alvarez. Only 18 years old.

The crowd at Ashe just fell in love with another Spanish player...

The TV commentators were so into the match, one of them just blurted out, "...this is awesome!"

Never, ever, count the Spanish guys out.

[I promise I never will. I will never say a word against a Spanish player again. Did I ever mention I was a Manuel Orantes fan too? --Mike]

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