That's so true teejay. I was thinking earlier today about Rafa's injury, wondering how bad it really was, and thinking back to when Delpo injured his wrist at the AO - at that point, nobody had any idea that the 2010 season was going to be a virtual write-off for him. Or even worse, the case of Soderling, who's been off the tour for over a year now and has gone from being world number 5 to unranked, and could maybe never come back. It's scary how these things can just happen out of the blue and threaten players' seasons and even careers.
Andy's been lucky on the whole with his injuries, apart from the wrist injury he had in 2007 he's never had to miss a string of tournaments. Hopefully his body will hold up in the coming seasons if he continues to manage his schedule well and doesn't push his body too hard.
The one positive thing about Andy is that he has always understood the importance of taking care of his body - something he once said that his fitness instructor at the tennis academy in Barcelona drummed into him - although in doing so this has often caused him to be criticised (thinking Wade, Haas, Reed, for example). However, as you say, that's no protection against sudden serious injury or illness which could interrupt or end a career, and I guess players, like so many other sportsmen and women, just have to learn to live with that fact, otherwise there would be no point in them continuing to play competitively.
Rafa on the other hand pushed his body to the very limit from a young age, something I fear that maybe his ambitious Uncle Toni might have been responsible for, and has suffered the consequences. His style of play hasn't helped either. Two years ago I read a report on Rafa's website about his knees, written by the doctor treating him. It seems the tendons had to a large extent disintegrated and surgery had been carried out to strengthen them. The doctor could give no guarantee just how long this repair job would last, but added that, unless Rafa played less tournaments and changed his style of play, the prognosis wasn't good.
It will be a sad day for tennis if Rafa is forced into early retirement but I'd far rather see him go whilst still at the top of the game rather than after a slide down the rankings, which is almost certain to happen if he has more seasons like this one.
Oh that's really depressing tj -I'd hoped we'd got beyond that now but there will always be some morons who have to take their spite out on our Andy I fear.
Ruthie - the sad truth is that a lot of top sports people are the object of spite from these brainless wonders. What, for example, about the moron(s) who defaced
Jessica Ennis's gold post box within hours of it being painted? We only see those directed at Andy because we're his fans. It seems there's a section of British society that can't handle other people's success, but they must be such bitter and twisted individuals that, really, they should be pitied rather than condemned. Andy has won over so many hearts and minds now that the need to defend him has become a bit irrelevant, although that won't stop me if it becomes absolutely necessary to do so.