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4396  General Community / Entourage / Judy Murray's US Open Journal on: August 28, 2005, 03:33 pm
Just as she did at Wimbledon, Judy is keeping a journal for The Sunday Telegraph


(Transcript below as I'm not sure you can access it if you aren't registered.)

Steak and ice cream is Andy's reward
By Judy Murray
(Filed: 28/08/2005)


It felt a bit odd walking through the USTA National Tennis Centre. The last time I'd been there was on finals day of last year's US Open when the huge open plaza had been packed with people and the atmosphere had been similar to that of a rock concert.

This time as Flushing Meadows opened their doors to the 256 players plus assorted hangers-on involved in the qualifying event for the final grand slam of 2005, there was an almost eerie silence, apart from the obvious thwack of tennis balls and the almost obligatory grunting.

Monday is sign-in day and the draws are posted in the afternoon. At first glance they don't appear to have been particularly kind to the nine British hopefuls. Of the seven men and two women, only Andy Murray and Elena Baltacha are seeded, 15 and 27 respectively, while six of the other seven players have been drawn against seeds.

A quick scan down the men's draw shows how tough the competition will be - Jonas Bjorkman and Arnaud Clement are among the 128 players attempting to win three matches to claim the 20 ranking points and $15,000 that goes with a place in the main draw. So is Prakash Amritraj, 20-year-old son of James Bond baddie, Vijay.


Four Brits in action today and Davis Cup captain Jeremy Bates is on site, presumably studying form prior to next month's away tie with Switzerland. David Sherwood is first up on Court 10 and makes a promising start against No 31 seed Sasa Tuksar, taking the first set before losing a tie-breaker. Seems a little impatient from the back of the court. The Croat serves out for a 3-6, 7-6, 6-1 victory.

Next up is Arvind Parmar. Makes short work of erratic Polish leftie Adam Charaj, who sports a Shirley Temple hair-do and a hideous turquoise outfit. Send for the fashion police.

A swift 6-3, 6-0 win on Court 17 secures $5,625 and a second-round match with American Hugo Armando. Alex Bogdanovic loses to crowd favourite Amer Delic, who has a single-handed backhand to die for, while Jamie Delgado is outgunned by Yeu-Tzuoo 'Jimmy' Wang from Taipei.


The main draw is announced today. It throws up some potentially interesting draws for the qualifiers. American teenage wild cards Donald Young and Scoville Jenkins would be rather attractive propositions while seeds Juan Carlos Ferrero and David Nalbandian would not.

Jonny Marray comes up with a tremendous 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 win over fifth seed Thierry Ascione, who last week won the Bronx Challenger event.

Marray's net-rushing game and effective slice backhand make life difficult for the Frenchman. Unfortunately, Mark Hilton and Elena Baltacha both lose.

Last but not least, Andy finally gets on court against the talented Israeli Dudi Sela, who stands just 5ft 3in and, not surprisingly, is nicknamed 'Diddy'. Tough draw as the 20-year-old Sela has won the Vancouver Open and Lexington Challengers this summer.

He takes the ball early both wings, especially on the single-handed backhand and has good hands, but Andy comes through 6-4, 6-4. Great match.

Relieved to see him win this one without any physical problems as he had a scan Tuesday morning to check his strained shoulder and was involved in a taxi crash in Manhattan on Tuesday night when he banged his head on the glass partition. Next opponent is a gritty Italian, Paolo Lorenzi. Fourth match tomorrow. Another later start which is good. Andy is always at his grumpiest in the mornings.


Breakfast in downtown deli, physio treatment with legendary LTA physio Jean Pierre Bruyere at the W Hotel, bus to site, practice, lunch, discuss tactics. Ready to go. Watch Marry against Thiago Alves, who was definitely more accustomed to the extreme heat.

Chances in the first set but a couple of uncharacteristic volley misses and a double fault in the 10th game gift the first set to 'Elvis' and it's Heartbreak Hotel for Jonny. Second set goes quickly and at 2-5, prompts British hacks to break in to rendition of It's Now or Never. Unfortunately it was the latter - 4-6, 2-6.

Didn't see any of the Parmar match with Armando but he tells me it "wasn't good" and went down 6-3, 6-4. Andy is on Court 11 and starts around five, which is tough for the British press, as it means they will miss their deadlines. Doesn't settle into this one until the last two games but does enough to get through.

Looks lethargic with both his feet and racket but rips a cross-court forehand return winner to clinch the match and that keeps him happy. Gets collared by Sky TV reporter as he leaves the court but makes her wait as he signs autographs for fans including two Scots girls, one in a wheelchair, who have travelled for two hours by bus across New York to see him play.

Manage to see the last four games of match between Giovanni Lapentti and Igor Kunitsyn. The 6ft 4in Lapentti, who has plenty of female support and is best known to British fans for his win over Parmar in the infamous Davis Cup tie against Ecuador at Wimbledon five years ago, comes through in three sets.

Andy complaining of sore shoulder when using kick serve. Jean Pierre to the rescue again.


Same pattern as Thursday. Fourth match on. Press are ecstatic. Not! Sense Andy is really up for this one today. He loves the US Open, it's his favourite tournament and he desperately wants to make the main draw. He puts in a brilliant first set, allowing the 22nd seed just six points.

Lapentti gets his act together in the second and it goes with serve up to the tie-break, though Andy was lucky to hold in the ninth game where he needed eight game points to clinch it. "My shoulder was sore again on serve but at least I will be able to rest it and get treatment before I play again on Monday or Tuesday."

His reward for qualifying was a steak dinner and a Haagen-Dazs ice cream... and a first-round encounter with Romanian Andrei Pavel. Bring him on.

 Evil or Very Mad  Words fail me about Wimbledon's refusal to make a reciprical arrangement re Wild Cards. Still, nothing changes. Since when have the old f**ts there cared about supporting home talent? Grrrrrrrrr
4397  General Community / Andy Talk / Murray's Team on: August 28, 2005, 03:19 pm
Embarassed  Woops! I forgot to log in. The last post was from me.

I'm sure it wont be the last. I am somewhat fanatical about the game of tennis, but am too old to get obsessive about players (  :P  now Pat Rafter's retired!)

But I'm really excited by Andy's talent. In a couple of years he will hopefully be up there in the top echelons. ( injuries permitting)

It's great to have a site where those who care about British tennis can celebrate/commiserate the results of our most promising player for a decade.

 Very Happy
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