Not a Good Sportsman
Yes it was great fun to cheer in person and it was really cool to see the Bryan brothers--they don't play too many doubles matches on tv. But I also had to watch Nalbandian lose and then Gonzo (no one in the stands even called him Gonzo--philistines) lose, and Safin lose to nobody--I don't even remember the guy's name. And then Blake lose. And not to nobody, to a really annoying jerk nobody. I refused to clap when he got his trophy. The internal critizism went through my head, now Kathy, that's not very sportsmanlike--he did win fair and square (if you count taking too long between every point--tying his shoes about six million times to make Blake wait--changing his racket over and over--pouting each time a call didn't go his way--calling out the trainer to try to get sympathy, winning fair and square). I finally forced myself to clap, but my heart wasn't in it. I was bitterly disappointed that Blake lost and I've never even liked Blake all that much--he's too eratic a player for my taste. His first serve percentage for the entire tournament was awful, although that was because he was going for the aces--high risk tennis is his game. He did his share of pouting and I think Stepanek's drop shot may have made him cry. It made me want to cry. The ball would be going back and forth so fast and hard and then all of a sudden, it would glide and drop just over the net, like magic. No one could hit that shot. Blake did start hitting it after three of them, but each time there wasn't enough time to recover. He did get one back for a point--it was masterful and I thought I'd never be that happy again in my life. Then he lost the match.
The Bryan brothers however may make me sign up for tickets again next year. They are twins, but Mike is right handed and Bob is left handed. Bob is the stronger server (he had a 138 mph serve which was faster than the fastest Blake serve that I saw of 135). If I had to guess, I'd say that Bob is the older twin also, because he had a habit of asking the ball kid for a ball when it was Mike's serve and then handing Mike a ball. Mike always through the ball Bob handed him back, but he waited until Bob turned around. They had a habit of walking out on the court in matching strides and then turning together--they were so cool. They were also funny and gracious. The other doubles games that I saw were ok (Nalbandian and Gonzo played one doubles match), but the Bryans were a whole different league. This tournament played the doubles with a No-Ad (which I thought, what no Mass Mutual cute tennis comercials?). It means that when it gets to duce, the next point wins--you don't have to win by two points. There were only two sets and it that ended in a tie, they would play a tie breaker. The Bryans never went to a tie breaker (although the teams they played were not slouches--most held serve until near the end, but the Bryans never let a team get a love game off of them).
All in all, if I have to clap for Stepanek in order to see the Bryans--I guess I can stand it. (But I'd rather stand and boo Stepanek for the entire time in the comfort of my home and cheer for the Bryans in front of the tv too. I need the tennis channel.)