Got there about 11:00 am after the big drive out. Didn't see Chanda's match as she had taken care of bidness before I hit town
Saw the third set of Dokic-Rittner. Commented a bit on that in the General Messages thread on being concerned about Dokic. The good news is that she was out on the practice courts a couple of hours after her loss working hard with Heinz G. He is such a funny guy...he was setting her up for approach shots and then would imitate her form if she was prissy getting to a ball or whatever. She seemed to be in a good mood for someone handed their butt on Stadium court.
Saw the whole Hantuchova-Mandula match. Petra had nothing to hurt Dani. Sounds like an easy win for Dani, but she made a bit harder on herself with some sloppy play. She isn't playing with near the confidence she had last year, but overall her game looked pretty good. She is moving WAY better than she did last year and is tinkering with a kick serve which seemed to be effective. Saw her in the dining area before her match and she was pacing around a bit...looked very nervous to be the defending champ, but she did well on court. Yes, she is thin, but I'm gonna take a tape measure to her cuz I think she has easily grown an inch in the last year, if not more. She doesn't look unhealthy to me....good color, hair looks healthy, not alarmingly thin, IMO.
Made my way around the practice courts and saw a lot of guys out there (ahhh...warm weather and shirtless practicing, lol). Guga was the practice whore yesterday...he was out there three different times. Todd Martin was also out twice. Dang, he's getting so gray. He, very wisely, was not practicing shirtless
Neither was Juan Carlos, which was not pleasing. Marat Safin joined the party and was practicing with Guga. Kafelnikov even looked decent for somewhat slighter build guy. Federer was hitting with Max Miryni (can't make that look right).
Funniest sight was Younes El-Aynaoui practicing with like 300 people watching. Don't know if they were ESPN viewers who caught his "Instant Classic" match with Roddick in OZ or if they thought he was James Blake
Tammy Tanasugarn was signing autographs for legions of kids. Always so nice to the fans
Got some pictures and they will be up after Sunday on www.tennis-ontheline.com
Saw Denisa Chladkova heading out to the practice courts. Does the girl have a lice problem....cuz seriously, no girl should wear her hair like that. Really nasty looking.
Clement, sans blades sunglasses, was hitting around a "football" in the grassy area with another equally fine man. Lots of players using the "grassy knowl" for running sprints, playing soccer, throwing frisbees, flirting with players from the other tour (or same one
Saw Mirjana Lucic walk by when I was eating lunch and she does look fitter than last year. Easily has lost 20 pounds. Didn't see her practice, but will be looking out for her. She looked happier than last year too...a little life in her eyes this time. If only she would win a match.
Kleinova was the one I saw everytime I looked around yesterday. There's always one player who turns up everywhere....usually one who is already out of the draw
The WTA mascot, Ana Paola (daughter of Neffa de los Rios) was scooting around everywhere. Paola Suarez had her come sit on her lap and was reading to her...very cute. Unfortunately, her mom lost in doubles too.
MommyCap and BrotherCap were sitting in the dining area during my lunch, talking to Chanda Rubin, but I didn't see JenCap. She had an autograph signing in the Fila Shop yesterday I believe. Steven is working as her coach this week...hmm...at least we don't have to be subjected to Stefano in shorts
Barbara Schett was doing her usual talking to a table full of boys in the dining area. No wonder she doesn't win matches....boys, boys, boys. She looks awfully unfit still, which is disconcerting.
Watched a bit of doubles later in the afternoon. Bovina/Stubbs looked to be in charge easily over Dechy/Loit, so after a few games I moved over to Myskina/Safina vs. Rittner/Vento-whateverhernewnameisnow. Myskina is impressive-looking on court, but sad to say she plays with about as much smartness on court as her older brother. She even gave us a Marat racket toss after about her 5th error in a row. I left after they blew the first set 5-7. Surprisingly, they pulled it out in three sets. My first time seeing Safina in person and she is like Marat with a skirt on (whoa...bad image!). Temperment is exactly the same and she has nice solid strokes, but just doesn't use her noggin and overhits a LOT. Myskina won the fashion plate award for her doubles match with some little orange shorts with the belt like Anna K. has been wearing....very cute
Bad marks all around to the shoe companies...there are some atrocious shoes out there this season, starting with Barbara Rittner's awful bowling shoe look.
That's it for me right now....I've probably forgotten about half of what I saw, will post if I think about it.
No news on Garbin's injury yet. Kremer was definitely the wrist.
Gotta go get ready for another fun day in the sun! My pictures will probably be up Monday or so on www.tennis-ontheline.com
Lots of practice court stuff and some candids.