The Reuters global sports blog
Miami courts too slow – Rusedski
By Greg Rusedski
All the talk at the Miami Masters Series was again about the top four and if Roger Federer would be able to continue his amazing run. Miami is a tough event to win immediately after Indian Wells due to its slower conditions, heavy humidity and at times; strong winds.
Federer was trying to win Indian Wells and Miami back-to-back for the third time in his career. Federer has been on an amazing run since losing in the semi-finals of the US Open. He has won 6 of his last 8 events and has amassed the most points of any player since mid-September of last year. Unfortunately for Roger, he lost to Andy Roddick in the third round when he ran out of gas with Roddick playing well. This will hurt Roger because he owns Roddick and had beaten him in 24 out of 26 matches up until this match.
Nadal looked great all week to get to the semi-finals but had to pull out against Murray with a re-occurring knee problem before the match started. This was such a shame because he was playing so well. Everyone in the tennis business has always had question marks over whether Nadal could hold together physically because of the way he plays and moves; it is not efficient and is extremely physical. I hope this is more of a precaution for Rafa than a serious injury.
Murray on the other hand has had everything go his way with a default in the third round against the dangerous Canadian Milo Raonic and then in the semi-finals against Rafa Nadal to be back in the Miami finals.
Novak Djokovic played great all week and beat surprise semi-finalist Juan Monaco to meet Andy Murray in the finals. Andy vs. Novak is always an interesting proposition. They grew up playing junior tennis together so they know one another inside and out, this always adds an extra dimension. Novak didn’t play his best nor did Andy, but Novak showed why he is world number one by winning 6-1 7-6. Novak does everything a little better than Andy and looks like he is going to continue to dominate men’s tennis. The match lasted over two hours for two sets because the balls and courts were too slow.
The ATP needs to either speed up the ball or speed up the court because we are not getting enough variety in tennis. All the players are playing long baseline rallies with players rarely go to the net. We need more variety of play in tennis, all types of court players; servers and volleyers, and baseliners. This needs to be addressed by the ATP tour.