As Euro 2012 dominates the media’s sporting agenda, one could assume England’s impending debacle at the competition is soon approaching. As other sports currently lie in the shadows of European football, history was made on 11 June, as Rafael Nadal became the only man ever to win seven French Open titles.
What was this? Novak Djokovic had just defeated Rafael Nadal in the final of the 2012 Australian Open, and I suddenly found that I could not watch. As he tore his shirt from his chest, letting out a roar as he headed towards his adoring family and friends in the crowd, I turned away: possibly in envy at his perfect pectorals, but there was something more. The next day, I realised what it was.
The ‘Happy Slam’ is known for many things. Its ‘we can do anything’ atmosphere, the genteel patter of play, the thrilling late-night finishes, the sumptuous player’s lounge, the well-stocked media cafe, not to mention the oft-extraordinary tennis.
Boxing, sprinting, kayaking, rock climbing, Olympic lifts and more – all in a Christmas day’s work during the tennis off-season
Gone are the days when tennis players (we’re talking about you, John McEnroe) spent the Christmas break eating turkey with all the trimmings and nursing their sore limbs and tired minds after 40-odd weeks travelling around the world. Oh no. Andre Agassi boosted the off-season training trend in somewhat un-festive fashion – running up hills on Christmas day.
Diego Maradona, titanic poses, and eight cheery tennis players – why this year’s World Tour Finals has begun with a bang
We are back in London. The tennis caravan, which rumbles so gracefully around the world, hopping plane to plane from East to West and back again has alighted once more on the banks of the Thames. And, while the rows upon rows of press tap away at their laptops like a well-oiled hamster wheel, London’s O2 Arena, turned into a tennis court for one week of the year, has patriotic bottoms on practically every blue padded seat.
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