Friday, January 23, 2009

The Australian Open 2009 - Day 5

Greetings Readers

I sort of put it together, but I guess I was blind to it. Australia and the Australian Open are where tennis players say their goodbye for the last time should this be there last year. Most of the time the players have told the world of their intentions, yet there are others that do not. Sometimes - between the Australian Open and the French Open players are tested and know whether or not to continue playing tennis.

Marat Safin has made it known that this is probably the last time and the last year that he will play Tennis professional at the Australian Open.

I have to be honest that his honesty was refreshing to hear. He knows that his tennis playing is not up to par and it is getting difficult to keeping playing tennis when he is not playing his best. Hell, would you get day after day and train and not make good results?

These are a couple of pictures that I am going to miss from him when Safin retires. His shoulder shrugs, whether the shoulder shrugs mean, “What that fuck was I thinking?” Why the fuck did I hit it the ball that way” or is it “I cannot fucking believe the call!?” Oh yes, Marat has said fuck and has been fined. Fuck – he probably ranks up the top 5 of getting fined on the court for his actions and or words in the tennis world. Perhaps I should do some research on this.

Anyway, the match was between Federer vs. Safin and most of us were expecting a battle. There was was no epic battle, but there was the battle with Safin himself. He has beaten Federer before and yes it was in Australia that Safin beat Federer to be Champion of the great Grand Slam years ago.

The match was so-so. Good, but not great. Safin was in control and subdue. There were some moments of rage about to erupt, but Safin managed to control himself.

Until the last set of the match. Safin was losing and it was serve. “Fault!” Safin turns around and apparently the center linesman called a foot fault on his serve. Oh yes, Safin and the fans, as well as myself, could not believe it. But I have to admit it was the vintage Marat we wanted to see and it was about to show itself.

Safin walked back of the court and basically was standing right before the linesman and looking over the short’s lineman. The linesman did nothing, except to stand with his hands behind his back and say nothing.

Safin was pissed and it showed. Safin was talking, but no yelling. There were a lot of arm and hand gestures being done by Safin. Yet, the moment was not complete until you saw the linesman Adam’s apple go up and down. The linesman swallowed and you could see literally see it happening. Wow. Of course, I probably would have done the same thing swallow since you are probably forbidden to talk/confront to a tennis player on the court. Though, I do not know.

That is just one of the moments I am going to miss on court when Safin takes the court at any of the last three Grand Slam tournaments this year. I am going to miss his anger, him destroying rackets, him throwing his rackets, him destroying the tennis walls; I am going to miss him arguing with the chair umpire. I am going to miss that Safin walk and playing style that is just unique to him alone.

Should this be the last Australian Open you play Marat Safin thanks for making us viewers see a lineman swallow in fear as you towered in front of him.

Until the next time

Daryl Charley
The Fallen Athlete

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