So Stan got a whole lotta bad press overnight.
"Stan has been an absolute embarrassment today," Eurosport commentator and tennis sage Simon Reed noted after the man in question had hurled his racquet to the ground in anger…
'But Federer played really well,' many will inevitably retort on Stan's behalf, but the world number two barely had a bead of sweat to show for walking all over a man who crushed Andy Roddick like a clove of garlic in the previous round.
When has Fed ever broken a bead of sweat playing a match on his terms?
Why did people ever think this match would ever be played on anything other than his terms?
Why should crushing Roddick “like a clove of garlic” leave people thinking he had even a scrap of a chance against Fed in this form?
Stan was doomed from the very start. And I don’t even mean in the match.
Ever since his family affairs became tabloid-fodder, he’s been considered fair game for a wider baying audience as commenter after commenter wheel out overly-worn domestic innuendos over what is and should remain essentially private.
Leaving one’s wife and 11 month old child “to focus more on tennis” does sound like he didn’t think the whole marriage thing through very well and, whatever else the case, I really can’t see Stan emerging from all this smelling of roses.
I must have missed the part where this makes it any of our business.
It’s one thing for once-avid fans to cool off a little (this will blow over as it should) and entirely another to bandy about irresponsible character judgements which speak rather more to the petty characters of those that relish peddling such gossip.
There were always going to be the “Swiss minion” jokes. In the same way as there will be Spanish ones when Daveed Ferrer goes down in straights to Rafa tomorrow (and he will go down in straights).
Idle banter like that is practically part and and parcel of being a tennis fan. (Though I do sometimes wonder why Swiss reserve comes in for more of a hammering. Hint: Being more of an “earthy” extrovert doesn’t always automatically equate with a more humble persona just as being unable to open up doesn’t always equate with a distant, more regal one)
But last nights debacle, having been conflated with all of Stans domestic troubles, turned into something altogether more hateful.
A bad day for tennis.