Tenniszine - UK tennis blog.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Murray and McEnroe, Wow!

I've blogged previously about the time I saw these two play one another over a year ago.

The San Jose win has really put Murray on the ATP map. I didn't watch it on TV but just saw the first game, which he lost; however it was lost by Murray rather than won Hewitt and when I went to bed I was already thinking that if he held his nerve he could win it.

McEnroe did OK. I saw that as a replay on TV. I wouldn't say he played great, but let's not diminish the fact he's won another doubles title on the men's ATP tour.

I've only played once in the last week, last night at club night. The UK weather has turned cold again so it was a bit of a miserable session. My play was solid but not outstanding.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Warmer weather in the zone

The weather in the UK has warmed up, but only because a low depression has moved in which means rain.
In the UK, unless you have access to an indoor court the rain inhibits play quite a bit. I suppose you could play outside in the rain but the problems are the slippery surface and the balls get wet and heavy. Then the ball sprays water all over you when you hit it or when it bounces. The heavy balls also aggravate or cause arm problems. Great fun! It would be worth trying to invent and patent a Teflon felted tennis ball, or something similar, that did not hold water but whose spin still influenced its trajectory through the air; just for the UK. Given the interest in tennis in the UK that idea is probably not going to be a winner.
So although I have paying access to a nearby David LLoyds I have not played much in the last week. I played twice, once was just a hit and the second time was a doubles match. On both occasions I was hitting and playing really well. After my last blog entry about Dementieva being in the zone I wondered if I had been in the zone. I am aware now that I was not concentrating on my strokes but instead concentrating on what I was trying to achieve with each shot. After that the stroke seemed to take care of itself. This is very similar to the model described in The Inner Game. Now if only I could do that in singles instead of worrying about losing which I inevitably then do.
I really don't like the sound of Henman's or Agassi's back problems.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Club day (33) sunny all round

Sunday in the southern UK was bright and sunny with a temperature of around 10 degreesC. I was tempted to do some tidying up in the garden but instead went along to the club and played some tennis for a couple of hours. It was great, and quite a few other people did the same so we mixed tennis with social chat and drinks (non-alcoholic for the players). I'm beginning to enjoy playing again now that my arm no longer hurts.

I watched the final of the Pan-Pacific Open on Eurosport as it was my first chance to watch Martina Hingis play since her return. Martina's defensive game is still respectable but in this case she was on the receiving end of an on fire Elena Dementieva who was clearly in the zone.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Tim Henman back problems

I mentioned in my last post that Tim Henman looked to be regaining form and confidence in Zagreb. Today he lost in the semi-final, but the report is what is worrying. Back injuries are notoriously fickle, and for tennis players are just not good news. Just ask Agassi. Let's hope it's not going to be a chronic problem for either of them this year.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Ice outside but not in!

Played for an hour today outside with the temperature hovering around freezing, and that was the temperature before factoring in the wind. It was really quite unpleasant, even with four layers of clothing on, reduced to three once I had warmed up playing singles. Today was one of those 'bad tennis' days when I wasn't moving or hitting the ball well at all. I put it down to the weather and was not too bothered.
Afterwards when I got home, for the first time in many months I felt no need to ice my arm for golfers elbow. Yes! Although I've been saying it for a while I think I'm recovering, and this despite playing three days in a row last weekend. Is it the new racket, or the new arm band or the new exercises? I did change technique and grip on the forehand a while ago after realising I was probably too old to change to a full western without the help from a coach.
Tim Henman has had three good wins at the Zagreb indoors. OK so two of the players were ranked lower but they're all in the top 75 so it has to be good match practice for Henman. Now if he can only stay injury free we'll see what he's got left. Richard Gasquet really has had a bad start to 2006.
Zagreb is a city I've had the pleasure of visiting. I really would like to go back to Croatia, preferably on the Adriatic coast. Maybe a tennis holiday.