Daily Bagel: Andy Murray denies camp complaints of Roger Federer favoritism

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The Daily Bagel is your dose of the interesting reporting, writing and quipping from around the Internet.

• Video: Five-set matches at a Grand Slam tournament can be tense, but Jo-Wilfried Tsonga showed you can still have fun. During the fifth set of their quarterfinal match Wednesday night, Roger Federer hit a drop shot that landed on the net cord and trickled over. Tsonga’s reaction is just so … Tsonga. He jokingly threatens Federer with a beatdown.

• British papers reported that members of Andy Murray’s camp were complaining that it was unfair for Murray to play all day-session matches while Federer has now played four straight night matches, given the fact the two will play under the lights in their semifinal Friday night. Not true, Murray said.

“If I was the tournament director or the referee or whoever decides the schedule, I also would have put Federer against Tsonga on as the night match tonight because it’s the best match of the day.  So I have no complaints about the schedule at all, and I didn’t complain about it the other day.”

• With all the focus on Sloane Stephens’ breakthrough victory, where does this leave Serena Williams? Doug Robson of USA Today reports on Serena’s battle with nerves.

• Deadspin debunks the whole mentor-protégé narrative between Williams and Stephens.

• What do Stephens and Maria Sharapova have in common? Big phone bills.

• This is the post-Armstrong era: After Novak Djokovic rebounded from his five-set marathon with Stanislas Wawrinka to beat Tomas Berdych in four sets, the two-time defending champion was grilled about his recovery regimen.

• Rafael Nadal’s crazy expensive Richard Mille watch gets an upgrade this year.

• Paul McNamee, the man who made Hopman Cup what it is today, was one of the most influential voices in Australian tennis. Now he’s sweating under the sun coaching Hsieh Su-Wei. Richard Hinds of The Sydney Morning Herald writes about the reversal of fortune.

After leaving the Australian Open in 2006, McNamee attempted to tackle two of Australian sport’s problem children – the local golf tour and the Melbourne Football Club. He was then beaten in an election for the presidency of Tennis Australia by one vote. More painfully, last year, he lost control of the Hopman Cup, a tournament he had co-founded and built from a humble exhibition into a significant local event.

”That one hurt a lot,” says McNamee, who spent Christmas in New York rather than watch the Hopman Cup played in its new government-funded arena. ”Me and my wife had given everything to that event. To have it taken away, yeah, that was tough.”

• Fun read here: Empathy for Manti Te’o: Or My Fantasy Relationship With Evonne Goolagong.

• Djokovic bids you good night as only Djokovic can: with a penguin.

• Non-tennis: People are awesome. Also a little bit crazy.

  • Published On Jan 23, 2013

    Good for Murray for saying something. Fed has consistently received beneficial scheduling. Whether it's the first match at the US Open semis, having the day off after the Australian semi while the other side doesn't, night matches during hot weather, and most infamously in my opinion... being through to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 2007 while some people weren't finished with 2nd round matches. Granted, Haas had been injured in his 4th rd win and withdrawn from the tournament, but they allowed Fed's section to complete 4th round matches before others finished 2nd rounders. smh. ok FedFan, I'm ready... bring it on. muahaha


    “Not true, Murray said”? Murray is disingenuously spun the issue as if he read from a script written by his publicist. It’s not just the British newspapers but also the major Australian newspapers that reported that team Murray made those complaints. Australian newspapers also reported the responses of the tournament organizers, as shown in my post in the link. Under the ATP rules, Murray is responsible for his team, including Lendl, and what they do. Murray himself may not have publicly complained about the schedule, but if Murray’s team members Lendl and Vallverdu on behalf of Murray complained about the schedule to the tournament organizers, then it’s as good as Murray complaining himself. Murray needs to show a little honesty. This is not the first time he whined about his schedule – he did it at the 2008 US Open as well.



     @badgernation74   As usual, your facts are wrong:


    "Having the day off after the Australian semi while the other side doesn't " is 100% wrong. Both the Thurday semifinalist and Friday semifinalist get at least a day off as the finals are held on Sunday evening. So this year Djokovic gets Friday and Saturday off while Federer/Murray get Saturday off.


    "It's the first match at the US Open semis" is wrong. At 2010 US Open,. Federer played the second US Open semifinals after your Nadal got the first match at the US Open semis.


    "being through to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 2007 while some people weren't finished with 2nd round matches."  This is totally false. What really happened at 2007 Wimbledon:

    Day 5: Federer won his third round match against Marat Safin. Federer did not play the next six days due to rain and a walkover from his fourth round opponent.

    Day 5 to Day 9: Nadal took 5 days to play his third round match against No. 28 Robin Soderling due to rain disruptions (instead of finishing his match faster due to the rain, Nadal incompetently needed 350 points and 241 minutes to beat Soderling). Jimmy Connors said Nadal benefited from playing a little tennis everyday while Federer rusted from not playing matches.

    Day 7: Federer got a walkover from Tommy Haas (which left the rusty Federer without match practice for 6 days due to rain disrupting Wimbledon's scheduling). 

    Day 10: Nadal played his fourth round match against Mikhail Youzhny. Rusty Federer played his first match in six days -- he started his quarterfinal match against Juan Carlos Ferrero but the match was called off during the first set due to rain. 

    Day 11: Nadal played his quarterfinal match against Berdych -- and Nadal became the first player to qualify for the semifinals. Federer continued and finished his quarterfinal match against Ferrero. 

    Day 12: Both Nadal and Federer play their semifinal matches.

    Day 13: Federer and Nadal played their finals. 

    Remember Federer came into 2007 Wimbledon without a playing a warm-up grass event (he withdrew from Halle due to a groin injury he picked up before the French Open finals). So Federer was rusty when he entered Wimbledon -- and not playing for six days in the middle of Wimbledon was not helpful. 


    As I showed once again, your facts are again proven false. But we appreciate you are a Nadalfan :)


    Between 2003 to 2007, there were many matches where Federer received bad scheduling despite his No. 1 ranking and multiple grand slam titles.  The great SI sports writer Frank Deford made the following observation regarding the 2006 US Open: "when Federer, the defending champion, four-time Wimbledon winner, played a key match at the U.S. Open a couple of weeks ago, the U.S. Tennis Association put him on the lounge court, while scheduling an American, James Blake, in the stadium. Blake, to use that wonderful British word, is a "useful" player; Federer may be the greatest artist in the history of his sport." (From Sports Illustrated: "If it's not our star and our sport, U.S. just doesn't care").




     Uh... Fed has been the SECOND semi-final of the USO a few times too.  Man, you people that complain about scheduling and draws are just lame.  All the players have had good and bad draws.  All the players have experienced good and bad schedules.  It happens to everyone.  Federer had the night matches this week because he had the toughest opponents, duh!  Maybe if Murray would not have had a cupcake draw, he might have gotten featured at night.  Geez...


    @Michael9 Ok, you are technically right on the Oz Open issue, I did mean an extra day off, but I did misspeak... so point Michael. The 2010 US Open doesn't make or break either of our cases in totality. But if you had another example, I think you would've used it. Deuce. Wimbledon 2007, what I said wasn't "totally false" I admitted Fed got a walkover into the quarterfinal. And the day I accept anything Jimmy Connors says as fact is the day it snows on Laver arena during the Oz Open. Code Violation for unsportsmanlike conduct michael9. Advantage badger. 06 US Open. So given that we both know Blake never made it past the Quaterfinals of a Slam, any match discussed by DeFord would've been earlier than that. Putting Federer on a court other than Ashe for pre-Quarterfinal round isn't a sin. That you used it as an example of one, sorta proves my point. But yeah, Blake hype at the time was ridiculous. 6 games all. Tie Break. To be continued when Rafa comes back... Maybe all you Fed people miss him a little too. This Djokovic Murray stuff isnt as fun.


    You people?!? So now if you don't love Fed, you are "you people." Nice.


     @badgernation74  @Michael9  I am not just technically right, I am COMPLETELY 100% right -- the second semifinalist gets a day off. The second men's semifinals of Australian Open is like the semifinals of Wimbledon or French Open. 


    What you said about Wimbledon is TOTALLY false. You falsely claimed: "(Federer) being through to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 2007 while some people weren't finished with 2nd round matches" -- prove your false claim if you think you weren't totally false :)  Fact is, on Day 7 (when Federer was officially awarded the walkover in the fourth round due to Tommy Haas's withdrawal) there were no more second round matches on Day 7. If you cannot prove there was even one men's singles second round match still being played on Day 7, then you have no case.


    So you are telling ius that you know more than Jimmy Connors? 


    I have other examples regarding US Open, but since I've already won that point why would I need to use more?


    Deford's point was valid: It does not matter if it was the second round or quarterfinals. It was irrational to put James Blake vs young No. 125 Teymuraz Gabashvili on center court while relegating Federer vs former No. 4 Tim Henman o another court. Federer-Henman and Nalbandian-Safin were far more compelling men's match that day.