Connect with us

Phuket

Phuket Sports: Laying odds for French Open; Murray ruled out

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

PHUKET: If I were a gambling man, which thank the Lord I’m not, then a punt on Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal would seem an obvious bet for the French Open.

But even linked together as a double, the odds would be prohibitively short. Why? Just look at their 2013 records. Rafa, back after a seven month lay-off, has reached eight finals in eight tournaments – and won six of them. Before the climax of the Italian Open in Rome, he declared with his usual modesty: “These are emotional moments for me … after many months of doubt, I am able to play at a level I would not have dreamed of four months ago.” He then went on court to dismiss Roger Federer while only losing four games.

Serena Williams has also been playing with enormous authority and conviction. At the women’s final in Rome, she made relatively short work of Victoria Azarenka, herself a world number one not so long ago. It was the American’s fourth consecutive tournament victory and the score of 6-1, 6-3 reflects her dominance, despite some spirited early resistance.

Even more telling is her tally of wins: Fourteen to the Belarusian’s two. Williams dropped only fourteen games in five matches during the Rome tournament, and at thirty one, when most players are beginning to feel their age, she is going from strength to strength. To the most powerful shots off the ground and the heaviest serve in women’s tennis, she has added mental resolve, conviction and, above all, consistency. As she declared after the win, much to the chagrin of her competitors: “I feel great. Never felt better.”

Sharapova, who defends her French crown at Roland Garros, pulled out of her quarter-final match in Rome against Sara Errani due to a recurring sickness, but in the previous tournament had already lost to the American. Azarenka got it right when she said of her opponent: “She’s been playing her best tennis for the past year and a half or so.”

What of other men’s chances in the first Grand Slam of the summer? Djokovic, beaten by Berdych in Rome, seems to have lost a little of his luster. Although he has been number one for what seems like an age; he can never be discounted. Moreover, his record against Nadal is impressive.

Murray, still the world number two, has a lower back injury and is not even sure that he will make the starting blocks. His confidence is on the wane and, frankly, he has not played enough competitive tennis this year.

Federer, despite his wonderfully consistent record in reaching tournament finals, is not the irresistible force he once was, and his record on clay against Nadal – eleven losses out of thirteen – speaks volumes. Of the other contenders, only big hitting Del Potro and Berdych have a game that is conceivably powerful enough to trouble the favorites.

Fortunately, things rarely go entirely according to plan in tennis. Let’s hope the cavernous amphitheater of Roland Garros generates its share of high drama.

The French Open starts today and concludes June 9.

Andy Murray ruled out of Roland Garros

World number two Andy Murray has pulled out of the French Open after failing to recover from a lower back injury which he aggravated at the Italian Open last week.

“It’s a really tough decision and I love playing in Paris, but after seeking medical advice, I am not fit to compete,” Murray said in a statement released by his management company.

“Apologies to the organizers and thanks to everyone for the messages of support. Now my complete focus is on getting back on the court as soon as possible.”

Murray retired injured in the Italian Open second round in Rome on his 26th birthday last Wednesday after leveling his match with Spaniard Marcel Granollers by winning the
second set.

“I’d be very surprised if I were playing in Paris,” he said after having treatment on court. “I want to make sure that it’s something that I can sort out. It’s not enjoyable to play now.”

The French Open, which starts today at Roland Garros, will be the first grand slam Murray has missed since Wimbledon in 2007 when he had a wrist injury.

He will now focus on preparing for the grass court season and set his sights on being ready to play at Queen’s Club, the warm-up event for Wimbledon starting on June 10.

Keep checking our online Phuket Sports pages, join our Facebook fan page or follow us on Twitter for the latest local, national and international sporting news.

— Patrick Campbell / Reuters

 

Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Leave a comment below or join the discussion on Thaiger Talk Forums.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phuket. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Coronavirus (Covid-19)47 mins ago

Pfizer vaccine application received, review process begun

Visa4 hours ago

Covid-19 prevention leads to 14 arrests of longterm overstays

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Covid UPDATE: 3,277 new infections and 29 deaths, provincial totals

Phuket Sandbox July 1st

days
hours
minutes
seconds

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Sponsored by image

Thailand4 hours ago

Red tape and restrictions suggest a slow Phuket reopening

Phuket5 hours ago

UPDATE: Tourism Minister reportedly says July 1 ‘sandbox’ won’t happen

Tourism5 hours ago

Koh Samui eyes August 1 reopening, “Samui Sealed Route”

Weather7 hours ago

Village need rain? Have you considered a giant penis?

Coronavirus (Covid-19)10 hours ago

Covid UPDATE Saturday: 3,277 new infections and 29 deaths

Coronavirus (Covid-19)21 hours ago

8.3% of Thailand’s 50 million vaccine target reached so far

Coronavirus (Covid-19)22 hours ago

Site launched for June 14 vaccine signup for all foreigners

Coronavirus (Covid-19)23 hours ago

Free quarantine accommodation for arriving Thais to be cancelled

Thailand1 day ago

Thailand News Today | Sandbox – bar, clubs closed? Local AZ problems, Sex toy arrest | June 11

Drugs1 day ago

UN report: Changes in Southeast Asia drug trafficking during the pandemic

Cambodia1 day ago

United States to return 27 stolen antiquities to Cambodia

Thailand1 day ago

Autopsy reveals heart attack killed woman who received AstraZeneca vaccine

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending