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Auckland - View from the stands

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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « on: January 10, 2006, 12:09 AM »
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Hi guys,

My first post here. I'm English but live in Auckland New Zealand, I'm a big Murray fan and I went to the tennis yesterday and got to meet him and got an autograph etc. Thought you might like a report from the stands.

I went without a ticket and managed to get the last one available for the main stand, at the front in the corner (supposedly restricted view, but I'll post some pics soon which show it was fine) and in the afternoon I moved into the middle anyway when there were empty seats. It was pretty expensive, $60 NZ, when you consider I'm paying $40 NZ to get into Rod Laver Arena for the Aussie Open.
Weather was perfect, really hot but with a cool breeze.
I left home at 8am, an hour bus ride into the city then had to sort something out at Uni, then find the ticketek box office to get my ticket. Got into the stadium at about 10am and had a look around at some of the outside courts where Andy Murray was having a hit with someone on a practice court. So I stayed and watched for a while and when he came off I got his autograph and a photo with him etc. It was a brief encounter, but enough to say I'd been following him since Wimbledon and wish him luck for the tournament. As a 19 year old, it actually felt slightly strange asking someone younger than me for their autograph.

First on court it was a wildcard NZer against a Young German, all one way traffic for the German in a poor match.
Then came the one I was waiting for, Murray vs. Carlsen. I actually missed the players walking out onto the court and being announced as I had gone for a toilet break.
Murray started a bit shaky, with 3 double faults in the first game but managed to hold, and in quick time he was 4-0 up and looking a much superior playerd. Then all of a sudden he went to crap and it was 4-4 and I thought he had blown the set, but credit to him he managed to take out the set 7-5. It was good to see a match with 2 evenly matched players and there was some pretty high quality tennis, compared to the first match. Murray's main weapom looks to be his backhand. Superb powerful backhand, and he used it to great effect today. He also has quite a big serve, when he gets it right. He will need to serve much better against Ancic who does not get broken at all tomorrow.
2nd set, Murray began to take control of the match, he got his serve going and hit a few nice winners. He probably hit the shot of the day with a superb cross court backhand at 3-2 up to take it to 40-15 and Carlsen injured himself in the process of stretching to it. Cue a 5 minute trainer break and Murray entertained the crowd with some juggling antics and then practiced some serving where he got every serve perfect. Ironic that his first serve when play started up again was a fault into the net. But Carlsen was struggling to move and Murray won the point with a good 2nd serve and then closed out the next 2 games fairly comfortably.

Onto the interview, and what he actually said when asked about the shaky first set was "well we both played like women" and laughed, it was just a joke to say they played crap, and in fact most of the crowd laughed, I didn't hear 1 boo despite reports suggesting there were boo's all round. There were a couple of "ooh, aahhs" but no booing, it was a light hearted joke. I would say it must be fanatical female rights people making a big deal out of it, grow a sense of humour is my advice.

All in all, a good day's work for Murray, but he will certainly have his work cut out for him against Ancic. And from what I saw of Ancic this evening, well a lot of improvement is needed. I left after the Ancic match, there was 1 more doubles match featuring Gonzalez to come but it was late and I was pretty tired and sunburnt and had the hour bus trip to look forward to so decided to leave.

I tried to get a few pics of Ancic's match but unfortunately my camera batteries died after 1 pic. I did however also manage to get Ancic and Hrbaty's autographs.

All in all, a good day out.

Pics to follow.

*Note: I posted this on another Murray forum yesterday and I have copy and pasted it from there in case anyone recognises it. As this is another Murray forum, I'm sure some of you will also be interested.
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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #1 on: January 10, 2006, 12:10 AM »
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Here are some of my photos:

Murray on the practice court:



Me with Murray:


On Court:



Serving: (I am very pleased with this photo, a good piece of photography I must say)


Ancic:


I took loads more, but these are the best few worth posting.

Enjoy.

I am going to go again tomorrow to see the Murray vs Ancic match, should be a good match.

And no, I'm not as short as that pic suggests lol, we were standing on a slope.
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iaintheviolaplayer
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #2 on: January 10, 2006, 12:32 AM »
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hey.welcome.great to hear first hand about tournaments.sounds like a good day
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Mark
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #3 on: January 10, 2006, 12:45 AM »
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Spectators booed loudly when Murray said “we were both playing like women'' in a first set in which there were seven breaks of serve.

Murray look startled by the angry crowd response but gathered his thoughts and strongly criticised his own performance before leaving the court to polite applause.


Woah the press do like the stir things up!
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hulahoop
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #4 on: January 10, 2006, 12:53 AM »
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=D>  Very Happy WOW Invisibleman18, thank you so much.


Grrrr we are really suffering in theUK as there is NO tennis coverage (although I have to say I love the banter we get through whilst searching t'internet for scores. It's surreal, and hugely enjoyable to know there are other insane pps out there. Wink )

But your report of the day is fascinating and the pics absolutely fantastic. Thank you, thank you, thank you.


Wil you be able to do the same during Melbourne, or will you be pc-less?

Anyway, a big welcome to MW. And your efforts are very much appreciated. Smile
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Mark
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #5 on: January 10, 2006, 01:02 AM »
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It's weird, those photos give a sort of private and closed feeling to the courts at the tournament rather than what you get from the typical photo by the press.
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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #6 on: January 10, 2006, 01:53 AM »
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Quote from: "hulahoop"

Wil you be able to do the same during Melbourne, or will you be pc-less?

Anyway, a big welcome to MW. And your efforts are very much appreciated. Smile


Nah I wont have a PC in Melbourne, I might get to an internet cafe but probably wont be able to post anything during the tournament. I'll write something up and post a few pics when I get back, I'm leaving on Friday and will be back in 2 weeks.
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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #7 on: January 10, 2006, 01:57 AM »
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Quote from: "Mark"
Spectators booed loudly when Murray said “we were both playing like women'' in a first set in which there were seven breaks of serve.

Murray look startled by the angry crowd response but gathered his thoughts and strongly criticised his own performance before leaving the court to polite applause.


Woah the press do like the stir things up!


Haha, that really is a load of bull****. He just laughed and said "we both played like women"  and 95% of the crowd laughed too. The interviewer jokingly said "you might have just alienated half the crowd" and Murray laughed and said something like "Sorry, but we played poorly in the first set in windy conditions."
The press are making a mountain out of a mole hill.

"Startled by the angry crowd" my arse. That statement is even more laughable than Murray's joke.
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Elly
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #8 on: January 10, 2006, 08:07 AM »
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Hi invisibleman18.  Thanks every so much for the great report and piccies, not to mention an accurate interpretation of the 'playing like women' quote.  It is utterly incredible the way the Press will latch on to something and embelish it in order to create a bit of a stir.

Thanks again for contributing so much for us all to enjoy here at MW!   :thx:
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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #9 on: January 10, 2006, 08:20 AM »
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^No worries.
Unfortunately its all sold out for the rest of the week. Today I went to try and get a ticket for tomorrow and was told its all sold out, so will have to watch it on TV. Unfortunately we don't get the night session on TV though so if the Murray-Ancic match is at night I won't get to see it.
It will be slightly disappointing to see empty seats on the TV, yesterday I was told I was buying the last seat available yet there were loads of empty seats and halfway through I moved to a better seat anyway (hence the Ancic pic coming from the middle rather than the corner like the Murray pics).
I must have been quite lucky though, yesterday managing to get a ticket about an hour and a half before play started.
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Bevc
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #10 on: January 10, 2006, 08:27 AM »
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:thx:  For the report and piccys.

 welcome  to Murraysworld!

 Crying or Very sad  Quite sad coz I should be on my way to NZ but we might have a bit of light at the end of the tunnel re 'that'!  Will keep you posted.  crossfingers
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Riverman
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #11 on: January 10, 2006, 09:33 AM »
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Hello invisibleman!

Great report you've done there, and good pics! Thanks. Smile
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Quackers
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #12 on: January 10, 2006, 10:20 AM »
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Welcome!

Whooh Those pictures are fantastic!!!  Did you talk to Andy much when you got his autograph?

Reading your report for the day has got me all hyped up because I'll be doing that in Toronto (but its eight months away Damit) but at least I have something to look forward too.  Hope I manage to get tickets.  Your going to the Aussie Open too? Thats wikid! SO Jealous!  lol

goodjob
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invisibleman18
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #13 on: January 10, 2006, 10:34 AM »
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Didn't really talk much, he had just finished his (rather intense) session on the practice court and presumably was going off for a break in the shade. I just waited for him to come off the court and went over and asked for an autograph and got his coach to take a photo, said I was English and had been following him since Wimbledon and wished him luck for the tournament.

Must admit those pics came out well for a fairly cheap digital camera I only got a couple of weeks ago, that was its first real usage.
Yeah looking forward to the aussie open, I have wanted to go for ages and we decided to go on holiday to Melbourne this year, got 2 tickets for each of the first 5 days for centre court so we should get to see a few of the big names. Theres 4 of us so we will rotate who goes each day, I'll probably go 3 times.

Its good that we usually get a few big names here for the Heineken Open, the organisers do quite well to get them here. Ginepri and Hrbaty are regulars here and last year we had Gonzalez, Nadal, Ferrero, Coria, Rochus, Ginepri, Hrbaty, and this year of course theres Gonzalez, Ginepri (who will be pissed off to lose in the 1st round of both the singles and doubles), Hrbaty, Murray, Niemenin, Ferrer, Ancic to name a few. Last year was the first time I have been (got a free ticket from my club) and managed to get Nadal and Coria's autographs, and this year got Murray, Hrbaty and Ancic so building up a nice little collection from this tournament.
Rusedski came a few years ago (2002 I think) and he actually won it. Ivanisevic was here that year too.
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iaintheviolaplayer
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Auckland - View from the stands « Reply #14 on: January 10, 2006, 11:51 AM »
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thats really rubbish that there were loads of empty seats.maybe theyre sponsors guests whove not turned up or something
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