RG Diary: Tuesday 24 May
Originally published on: 24/05/11 18:42
The sky may have been blue and the sun capable of inflicting some serious sunburn, but at Roland Garros today there was also a chilly wind in the air.
That included the air circulating around Andy Murray as he defeated Frenchman Eric Prodon 64 61 63. After the match he admitted that it wasn’t a great performance, although in our book, a win is a win is a win, especially in an early round. “I was annoyed with the way I was moving. I was hitting the ball from the back of the court, especially towards the end of the match, and served well, but didn’t move particularly well” was part of the frosty self – analysis the Scot served up after the match that was over in one hour and 44 minutes.
Which is interesting by way of contrast with Ana Ivanovic’s kind assessment of her performance. The Serb, beaten in three sets by Sweden’s Johanna Larsson 76 06 62 was suffering from the effects of a recent wrist injury but as she commented “I’m very upset I lost, you know, because even though like I was injured, I felt like I was playing well.” Warm – hearted Ivanovic’s plan is next to play at Eastbourne.
John Isner retained his cool during his match with Rafael Nadal to turn up the heat under the defending Champion. We bet the Roland Garros organiser’s had everything crossed that the World No.1 would come through this match. The American had a 2 sets to 1 lead as he squeezed through two tight tie- breakers in the second and third. But Nadal showed that trademark resilience and after just a minute over four hours he booked his hotspot in the second round, 64 67 67 62 64.
When John Isner left Court Philippe Chatrier he received a standing ovation from the near capacity crowd, such was the quality of the match. This brings us to today’s award for innovation at Roland Garros. To get to the ground to witness matches such as these, spectators need some precise directions, there’s a five-minute walk from the Metro station at Porte d’Auteuil. So today’s award goes to the person who dreamt up the idea of painting little orange tennis rackets bearing the Roland Garros logo from the metro, along the pavement to the grounds. Neat idea, so that anyone coming here for the first time like the Serbian guy we had the pleasure to meet on the metro (who interestingly was an Andy Murray supporter) can easily find his way. Hope he too enjoyed the hot and the cold of the play today.