As all tennis fans know, there’s nothing worse than the Monday following the end of a grand slam. But its been an eventful two weeks in Melbourne, Australia and there’s a ton to talk to about. Let’s do it!
Federer vs. Father Time
The sun rose on Sunday morning here in the states and sure enough, Roger Federer had hoisted yet another Grand Slam trophy. The latter proving to be almost as certain as the former. He defeated Croatia’s Marin Cilic 6-2, 6-7, 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 on Sunday to win his 20th major slam.
At 36 years old, Fed remains at the top of the men’s game proving that not everyone is susceptible to the seemingly inevitable hand of father time. With this win, he becomes responsible for 10% of Open Era Grand Slam singles titles. To give you an idea of how impressive that is, 1968 marked the beginning of the Open Era. Fed turned pro 30 years later in 1998. Certifiably impossible.
Caroline Wozniacki Wins First Grand Slam
Personally, this was my favorite moment of the tournament. The media has torn her apart for years now saying she always collapses under pressure and that she wasn’t grand slam champion material. Not only did she prove them wrong by winning the Australian Open, but she secured the world no. 1 ranking. I love it.
I wrote a take on the Weekly Slice back in November saying she would break through and win her first major in 2018. This was basically in response to yet another article I read raking her over the coals. So all of you out there who doubted her, WHAT’S UP!?
I won’t take credit for predicting this however, because it was so easy to see. She started running marathons and got into the best shape she’s ever been in. If you have ever ran a marathon (No, I have not) I would assume that it takes a lot of mental toughness to complete. So while she developed her physical game, her mental game also grew. Wozniacki has also clearly been happier off court as well with her new fiance, David Lee. All of these provided the perfect storm for a Wozniacki win.
Marin Cilic Blames Slow Start on Closed Roof
Photo By: AFP Photo/Peter Parks We get it, Marin. You’re upset. You’re angry. And just as a teen lashes out at a nagging parent, you’re projecting your frustrations out on anything you can. “With the roof closed, it was way, way cooler than I expected. That was very, very difficult, especially for the final to be in that kind of a situation,” Cilic said. “I had a slow start in the match,” he said. “Then catching up most of the time.”
I’m kind of joking…a little. If he loses this match to anyone else, I don’t think he makes this comment. But given his history with Roger, this one cut deep. By history, I’m referring to the straight set loss in the Wimbledon final last year. Losing takes a toll, but losing to the same person is just a different beast. It builds up this mental obstacle and it takes a special athlete to break through those barriers.
Rafael Nadal Wants to Eliminate Hard Court Surface
Photo by: MICHAEL DODGE/GETTY IMAGESIn a quarter-final contest Rafael Nadal first received treatment on his right thigh in the fourth set after being up a set. The Spaniard was then forced to retire in the fifth set after the pain was too much to continue. He had an MRI today which indicated a “grade 1 injury of his iliopsoas (inner hip muscle) on his right leg”. Listen, I don’t know what an iliopsoas is, but it sure as hell doesn’t sound good. He specific injury has a three week expected recovery time and he still hopes to play in Acapulco.
In the post match press conference, Nadal called on the ATP to reconsider the tour’s schedule. This not only included the number of tournaments, but also the surfaces which tournaments are played. Surprisingly, he wants every tournament to be played on clay…who would’ve thought??? “Too many people getting injured. I don’t know if we keep playing in this very, very hard surfaces whats going to happen in the future with our lives,” Nadal said.
Okay this is crazy. I understand maybe to tone down the number of tournaments played, but this nonsense about changing the surfaces is laughable. He wins on clay so he wants to play on clay its as simple as that. And as for the injuries, his game welcomes them. He has a very physical style of play in which he runs miles and miles on the court over the duration of a match. If you don’t change your play style to suit the surface, injuries will pop up. And to put into question the future of tennis players’ lives is just unbelievable. You’re not a football player smashing your head into another player running at 20 mph. If you don’t want joint injuries, quit sliding around the court, get a bigger serve, a bigger forehand, and end points quicker.
The night before action began there was a fun practice match that is meant to entertain. That’s it. But then this happened.
I was absolutely stunned that Kyrgios responded the way he did. I thought he was going to challenge Zverev to an old school dual in the parking lot. Kudos to him though. He also took his eventual loss to Grigor Dimitrov in classy fashion. This is pretty special, folks. We’re watching Nick Kyrgios mature in front of our eyes.
American Junior, Sebastian Korda Wins Junior Aussie Open
Five days prior to the 20th anniversary of his father Petr Korda’s Australian Open victory, his 17-year-old son Sebastian won the Junior Championship at Melbourne Park. The no. 7 defeated Chinese Taipei’s Chun Hsin Tseng 7-6, 6-4 in a very competitive contest. This gives the US tennis fans yet another young star to place our hope in.
— Nelly Korda (@NellyKorda) January 27, 2018
His sister, Nelly Korda, who is a professional golfer was also pleased with his success. Three professional athletes in one family? Is this some sick joke? Congratulations to the Korda family for all their success, lets hope the train keeps rolling.
Make sure to favorite www.CrackedRacquets.com on your web browser to access daily match schedules, summaries of both men’s and women’s matches, and video highlights from the Australian Open.