Category — Rod Laver
No American men advanced to the Sweet 16 of this year’s Australian Open. John Isner was the last U.S. player to be eliminated, losing a 5-set match to No. 18 seed Feliciano Lopez on Friday.
Did you know that no American has won a Slam since Andy Roddick captured the U.S. Open in 2003? What’s up with that?
Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi and John McEnroe shed some light on the dark period.
January 20, 2012 No Comments
Tennis legend Rod Laver, who lives in Carlsbad, indulged me in a 15-minute phoner today. Of course we discussed the play of Novak Djokovic, who hasn’t lost a match this season. Laver had nothing but praise for Djokovic and believes he could capture the French Open, which begins Sunday in Paris.
“Djokovic is quite uncanny,” Laver said. “He’s improved so much from last year to this year. It’s phenomenal. He’s played well on the hard courts, but he’s playing outstanding on clay, too. It’s just uncanny how well he’s improved. He’s just a very confident individual right now. If he and (Rafael) Nadal meet in the French, that will be an interesting match to see.”
Laver says he sees a different Djokovic than before.
“His swing has improved, his backhand has improved and so has his serve,” said the 72-year-old Laver. “He used to have a good serve, but then he lost it. But now he’s found it and he’s very fluid with his shots and hitting them with such power. All of his shots are perfect. I could see him winning the French.”
May 20, 2011 No Comments
The greatest tennis player of all time resides in the San Diego area and is a Chargers’ season-ticket holder. You can find the legend tailgating at almost every Charger home game. That’s where I got the humbling pleasure of meeting him. Laver remains the most humble and considerate sports personality I’ve ever met. I wanted to ask him a ton of questions about his career (and how he owned one of my all-time favorites, Arthur Ashe), but he was more concerned with fixing me up some of the many goodies he had smoking on the grill and digging out another ice-cold Aussie beer from the cooler. Those 30 minutes will always be frozen in time with me.
What also stood out to me was his forearms. Laver isn’t a big man (probably 5-7 in height), but his forearms are huge. But that told me plenty about how he delivered those rocket serves, returns and backhands.
The legend does a Q&A with Jay Paris.
January 16, 2010 No Comments