Tennis Biz: French Open drama centred on injury excuses

IT would not be the French Open if there weren't surprise losses and drama during the tournament.

Defending champion Maria Sharapova lost in the fourth round to Lucie Safarova.

Roger Federer, world number 2 and number 2 seed, lost overnight to fellow countryman Davis Cup compatriot, friend and sometimes hitting partner Stan Wawrinka.

Nick Kyrgios and Bernard Tomic continue to be plagued by injury.

How often can the same excuse be used by these players when they lose a match?

The answer should be simple - don't play if you are carrying an injury and not 100%.

You wouldn't play a player in a local fixture competition if they were injured, so why would a professional sportsperson put their future (and reputation) at risk?

Kyrgios continues with his disrespectful and boring antics on court - something else he needs to fix permanently.

The shining light at the French Open for Australia's male players is surely Thanasi Kokkinakis.

He gets much less publicity than Tomic and Kyrgios but appears to be quietly improving in all aspects of his game.

Thanasi was down two sets to love and 5-2 in his second round encounter against Tomic and fought back to win in five sets.

It was an impressive effort.

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal play their quarter final tonight.

It is Nadal's 29th birthday. He has won the French Open title nine times.

Novak is hoping to complete a career Grand Slam. Novak has never beaten Rafael at the French Open.

Will this match be the highly anticipated match experts have been predicting since the draw was made?


Ipswich rivalries grow

WITH three rounds of Tennis Ipswich's Saturday fixture competition completed, a few rivalries are starting to develop with fascinating results.

One past player is back and his results continue to be very good.

A match worthy of note last Saturday was in the top senior grade S01 between Gary Franklin and Danny Rowe.

Prior to their set, Rowe had expressed some concern about playing the "cagey'' Franklin but was looking forward to the challenge.

The set progressed with many long rallies and spectators witnessed what can only be described as a very even match.

Franklin appeared to have gained a small advantage in the last 10 minutes prior to the hand shake but the rallies were still long with winners from both sides.

The effort put into the match by both players was obvious.

A red-faced Franklin said after winning 8/0, that it was the best he had played for some time and maybe he concentrated a bit more due to his cold.

All the spectators were amazed at the final score.

Unfortunately no juniors were watching as they could have learnt a lot about patience tennis and building points.


Handy rule

This week's rule from the Tennis Ipswich Inc's Saturday fixture rules covers playing out of order.

In senior grades, players must play in the order they have been nominated otherwise points for the sets played out of order will be forfeited.

This rule was introduced with the use of competition planner. It is to stay in place until the competition planner ratings have reached a usable level and can be assessed.

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