Thursday, 8 November 2012
I tried never to lose the feeling of being a tourist while I was living in Sydney. Conscious of the fact I'd be returning to the UK someday I wanted to make the most of my time in Australia. I left Oz without too many places left to visit on my wish list, so I don't think I did too badly.
Even though I've returned 'home', I want to keep that feeling of adventure and exploring my surroundings. One of the places I wanted to visit was The O2, so when tickets went on sale for ATP World Tour Finals I snapped some up.
Tickets for the evening session included one doubles and one singles match. First up was the doubles game of Marray / Nielson v Mirnyl / Nestor. Having only watched Grand Slam tennis before some of the rules took us by surprise. If the score reaches deuce, next point wins, rather than the usual advantage. AND the receivers can choose who receives the serve.
The final set, wasn't a set at all, but rather a super tie break with the first team reaching ten points the winners. Apparently this is known as a Championship Tie Break.
After the doubles came it was a quick turnaround before the singles match of Berdych v Tsonga which started with much pizazz of smoke machines and flashing lights. It was like the Twenty20 of tennis.
The singles match was quite different to the doubles. With less action at the net it was less frenetic and the baseline rallies invited you to do the classic head swivelling from side to side. The match was intense and big hitting until midway through the second set when Tsonga's head dropped and for the rest of the match it had the inevitable feeling of a Berdych win.
I enjoyed my evening at the tennis. I couldn't quite decide if I preferred the doubles of singles match the most. The slightly frenetic, fast reaction volleying of the doubles game was fun. However, the powerful baseline rallies of the singles match were absorbing too.
Two matches was about my limit though. I'm not sure I could handle a full day at Wimbledon.