Saturday, 6 March 2010

Indian Wells Drying Out.

As Arid as a Desert.

Or very nearly so. We do still (supposedly in the case of Fed) have our top four male players – after which levels of precipitation really do begin to dry up.

Delpo’s wrist is still in rehab, ditto Davy (though he’s still apparently scheduled to play) and Gonzo, as expected, has signed up to the Chilean Relief effort, which btw you can donate to here and here.

He’s also looking to arrange a “Hit for Chile” held sometime around Miami.

Chilean tennis player Fernando González is making efforts to play against Spanish Rafael Nadal and Switzerland Roger Federer to raise funds in benefit of Chile earthquake victims.

Gonzalez made contact with both players, as published by the Chilean newspaper El Mercurio. In addition, the athlete is heading a campaign to help those affected by Chile’s earthquake measuring a magnitude of 8.8 º in the Richter scale and the ensuing tsunami.

The Chilean did not participate in Indian Wells Master in order to help his country in the midst of this terrible tragedy and he hopes that both Federer and Nadal can join this crusade that would benefit many people in great need right now.

The games, according to Gonzalez’s plans, would be disputed in the vicinity of the Miami Masters.


Tennis seems to me to be in a wonderful place right now – but it also seems appropriate to ask why we’ve not seen something of this magnitude in the past.

Ever since ‘Hit for Haiti’, the tennis ether has been infused with something altogether more agreeable - fashioning a climate in which one rather expects to find such spiritually attuned efforts to reach out, to be more commonplace.

Plate-tectonics has undoubtedly had something to do with that.

But suddenly it becomes a whole lot easier to organise a second ‘Hit for Haiti’, featuring the most intimidating line up of illustrious personages outside of Madame Tussauds.

Both Gonzo and Fed, must be applauded for proactively raising the profile of the recent devastation, that might have otherwise only received the most meagre of coverage within tennis circles.

You’d think the powers that be, might have readily seized upon the opportunity to stage such events themselves, without having to be prevailed upon by it’s most influential players.

Haas, in the meantime, has been sidelined for as long as six months having had to undergo a hip operation – bad news whichever way you look at it but particularly injurious to the remaining career of a 31 year old.

Did I mention that rules him out of IW too?

Perhaps even more jarring to the German ear, would be the news that he’s recently picked up American citizenship, which a) makes him the current American #2, b) makes him eligible for the US Davis Cup team as soon as September of this year – which by his own account is not a prospect he’s displeased with.

Having lived in Bradenton, Florida for two decades, one might understand why he feels such an itch – I can’t help feeling however that the news may be less well received “back home” (wherever that is these days).

It doesn’t get much better in the women’s draw – with Safina still struggling with that back of hers and the Williamses ensuring their regular quota of unpaid leave falls squarely within the next two weeks.

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