Roland Garros, 2016

Novak Djokovic Wins French Open

By DownTheTee | June 5, 2016

Finally. After four attempts at closing the biggest gap in his resume Novak Djokovic has won his inaugural French Open, defeating Andy Murray of Britain, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, 6-3.  The climax of Djokovic’s struggle to reach the ranks of few first and foremost puts him alongside Don Budge (1938) and Rod Laver (1962, 1969) to have…

Muguruza Upsets Serena to win First Major

By DownTheTee | June 4, 2016

It’’s hard being great.  Serena Williams knows this like other mega sport stars know this.  Take Roger Federer. He’s been trying to top his 17 Grand Slam record for four years. At 35, for both Federer and Williams, the task becomes more difficult because the young ones, like 22-year-old Garbine Muguruza, have adopted the famed…

Big Weekend in Paris Ahead

By DownTheTee | June 3, 2016

This French Open has been miserable for players, fans and tournament staff. Rain and chilly temperatures created delays, forcing winners to play days in a row.  Floods in Paris, the worse in over a Century, have constrained the local population as The Louvre remained closed in order to move art to higher floors. Player tempers…

The Usual and Not So Usual

By DownTheTee | June 2, 2016

The top three seeded players in men’s singles await their chance to make a run to the final of Roland Garros: Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, and defending champion Stan Wawrinka. The fourth semifinalist is the odd man out — Dominic Thiem. On the women’s side, things didn’t shake out so neatly. Yes, Serena Williams came from behind…

The Gift of Red Clay

By DownTheTee | June 1, 2016

June 1, 2016 — Ask people which Grand Slam they like most and chances are Wimbledon would win, with a spattering of nods to the other three. Yet the real winner has to be Roland Garros. And that’s because of the red clay. If skies are blue and springtime temperatures prevail in Paris, play is quick:…

Play Slows Then Stops in Paris, Once Again

By DownTheTee | May 31, 2016

French Open Tournament Director Guy Forget did a rain dance yesterday, attempting to settle fans’  frustrations of match cancellation and ticket reimbursement, plus stave off obvious questions about just why this slam does not have its center court — Stade Roland Garros — covered by a roof. The tournament has been discussing the possibility for some 15 years and…

The Unexpected Ones

By DownTheTee | May 29, 2016

If you filled out a French Open racquet-bracket on any number of platforms before last Sunday, you must know by now that you messed up. Don’t fret. Who in the world could have picked these two to grab berths in the quarterfinals: Shelby Rogers and Alberto Ramos-Vinolas?  But, they did. And that’s the glory of a major…

Coming Back

By DownTheTee | May 28, 2016

Worldwide coverage of Roland Garros was interrupted for more than hour today, as thunder storms pummeled Paris. After Tennis Channel got up and running, Brett Haber apologized for the suspension and called it, “a massive outage.”  Of course the shutdown of action raised the roof conversation, Roland Garros being the only Grand Slam venue without at least…

Worthy of High Praise

By DownTheTee | May 28, 2016

Radek Stepanek deserves high praise for his performance over the last two days against a much younger and highly decorated Andy Murray. In fact, Stepanek deserves a medal.  He didn’t win the five-set battle, which extended over two days due to darkness on Monday. But he put the fear of the almighty into Murray, the…

First Federer, Now Nadal Out of Roland Garros

By DownTheTee | May 27, 2016

During a sunny spring day in Paris that seemed to be going swimmingly, an impromptu press conference cut across the sports’ world, upending the news cycle and The French Open once again.  Nine-time champion Rafael Nadal had announced his withdrawal from the tournament with a left wrist injury. Now two of the most prolific and popular…