Friday, August 31, 2007

REVIEW: US Open - Day 4: The Best Match I've Ever Seen!
Last night, I had the pleasure of watching the best tennis match I've ever seen. James Blake and Fabrice Santoro put on a show that kept the seats full in the stadium and hundreds of thousands glued to their TVs. The level of play between these two athletes has rarely been equaled in men's tennis. The sheer entertainment value of the play has never been matched, in my opinion.
Before you think me a "novice" fan, please note that I've been watching tennis since the days of Bjorn Borg, the Jimmy Connors vs. John McEnroe rivalry -- and the days of Chrissie Evert, Bille Jean King and Martina Navratolova's great matches. That, my friend, is thirty-plus years of watching tennis as a fan.
Blake and Santoro tracked down shots that pretty much everyone thought were impossible to touch. Even more amazing, these two made shots out of those unreachables. They tested each other's limits, all the while maintaining a sense of humor with their opponent.
I am a fan of James Blake (ranked #6) and am familiar with Fabrice Santoro. After watching the second round match last night, I have an even healthier respect for BOTH players. Even though Blake won the contest on the court, Santoro won the hearts and minds of the spectators. He played his heart out -- running down balls that no ordinary man could have even thought about returning. Along with great prowess on the court, the 35 year old Santoro gave us a great show with funny quips, hilarious facial expressions & witty remarks to the chair umpire and James Blake.
For his part, Blake played tough -- seemingly inspired by the agility and commitment of Santoro. Blake had his own share of awesome shots and fun moments. The J-Block was in da house, but their rousing didn't seem to have any effect on play. In the end, Blake showed good humor and enormous talent -- winning 6-4, 3-6, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.
In post-match interviews, both players gave mad props to each other for playing so well - and giving the US Open it's best match thus far.

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