Daily Bagel: Rafael Nadal wins his 300th match on clay

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

• Video: In honor of Rafael Nadal’s 300th clay win, here is a song dedicated to him called “Vamos Rafa.”

• Behind the numbers: Rafael Nadal got his 300th win on clay today.

• Nick Bollitieri tells The Telegraph that winning Wimbledon with Andre Agassi was his greatest tennis memory.

“He called me about four days before the tournament and said: ‘Let’s go to Boca Raton to practise’. He had a girlfriend there, Wendi. We played golf, hit with [Robert] Seguso for 30 minutes.

“Then we got to England and he gave a clinic. They said ‘Andre, where you been?’ He said ‘I been practising for two weeks.’ We hadn’t hit one ball on grass, but he went on to win the title.

“He had the ladies from England trying to buy those short shorts for Chrissakes. He turned the crowd on, he really did. He had a way, man. He had ‘em jumping, man. When he retired at the US Open, the concession stands stopped to hear his speech. Everybody stopped. Not many people can do that.”

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  • Published On Apr 17, 2014
  • Laura Robson will miss French Open and Wimbledon due to wrist surgery

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    Laura Robson reached the fourth round of Wimbledon in 2013. (Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

    Laura Robson reached the fourth round of Wimbledon in 2013. (Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

    Laura Robson will have surgery on her left wrist and miss the French Open and Wimbledon.

    The 20-year-old Brit re-injured her wrist during practice in the offseason and played just two matches this season, which resulted in a retirement at the Hobart International and a first-round exit at the Australian Open. Robson will be treated by Dr. Richard Berger, who has handled Juan Martin del Potro’s wrist injuries.

    “I wanted to inform my lovely supporters that I have decided to have minor wrist surgery at the Mayo Clinic with one of the best wrist doctors in the world, Dr. Richard Berger,” Robson wrote on her Facebook page. “Dr. Berger is very confident that I will be able to return to the tennis court pain free before you even have time to miss me. Although sadly, I will have to miss the French Open and Wimbledon.”

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  • Published On Apr 17, 2014
  • Watch: Grigor Dimitrov winds up for a hot-shot forehand in Monte Carlo

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    Grigor Dimitrov looks all grown up this week sporting a sharp all-black Nike kit on court at the Monte Carlo Masters, but don’t worry. “Showtime Dimitrov” still lurks under that mildly intimidating “Darth Grigor” facade.

    In the first set of his three-set struggle against Albert Ramos, Dimitrov lined up a perfectly shaped curling forehand passing shot up the line for a winner. Ramos should have known better than to give Dimitrov too much time to pull off the shot. The Spaniard doesn’t get enough stick on the volley and you can hear Dimitrov take a deep breath, load, and instead of going for the low-risk flat forehand pass, he lets the ball drop low and then whips his racket through the ball to get it up and down for the winner. Beautiful shot.

    Dimitrov went on to win 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 and will play David Ferrer on Thursday.

    Watch the point below:


  • Published On Apr 16, 2014
  • Serena Williams talks diet and body image for Fitness magazine cover story

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    In the new issue of Fitness magazine, Serena Williams talks about how her health scare changed her attitude towards tennis. (Jeff Olson/Fitness Magazine)

    In the new issue of Fitness magazine, Serena Williams talks about how her health scare changed her attitude towards tennis. (Jeff Olson/Fitness Magazine)

    Serena Williams graces the cover of this month’s issue of Fitness, in which she discusses her split personality and body image issues, and talks about hopefully adding to her Olympic pin collection in 2016. Hard-core tennis fans won’t learn anything particularly new from the interview, but it’s always great to see Serena get an opportunity to tell her story to a broader audience.

    Here are some excerpts from the cover story:

    On her Jekyl and Hyde personas on and off court: “I think of myself as two different people. There’s the Serena Williams that everyone knows: She’s crazy. She can’t make a mistake. And she’s angry and just not nice, to be honest. I’m only that person for three hours a day, when I’m on the court. The rest of the time I’m just Serena. I’m the class clown.”

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  • Published On Apr 16, 2014
  • Watch: Umpire warns Donald Young for saying… son of a biscuit?

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    If a player receives a code violation for uttering an audible obscenity, doesn’t the player have to, you know, say something obscene?

    During his opening round win over Alexander Zverev at the Sarasota Challenger this week, Donald Young missed a backhand into the middle of the net and yelled “Son of a biscuit, man! Biscuit, man! Biscuit!” When the umpire gave him a warning, Young was confounded, and he had every right to be.

    “Come on Keith, don’t give me crap for that, man,” Young told the umpire. “I said ‘son of a biscuit.’ That’s a problem? That’s a problem now?”

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  • Published On Apr 16, 2014
  • Daily Bagel: Does Rafael Nadal try to catch Teymuraz Gabashvili’s racket?

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

    • Video: Was Rafael Nadal trying to catch Teymuraz Gabashvili’s racket here? Or was he so focused on tracking the ball that he didn’t see the racket flying in the air until the very last minute?

    • Roger Federer says he’ll skip out on tennis if needed so he can be at Mirka’s side for the birth of their next child. Federer hasn’t revealed the due date to the media, but the Federers announced that Mirka was expecting at the end of December, which means she may deliver sometime around the French Open and Wimbledon.

    It’s a priority for me trying to be there, trying to support my wife,” Federer said Wednesday at the Monte Carlo Masters. ”I’ve played enough tennis matches. Missing a tournament or missing a match wouldn’t change anything for me.”

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  • Published On Apr 16, 2014
  • Rafael Nadal not pleased about receiving a time violation in Monte Carlo

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    (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

    Rafael Nadal fell behind early in the first set, but rallied to win 6-4, 6-1. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

    Rafael Nadal was not happy after receiving a time violation during his second-round match at the Monte Carlo Masters and the eight-time Monte Carlo champion let chair umpire Pascal Maria know it.

    Nadal had won the first set and was up 4-0 on Teymuraz Gabashvili when the two played one of the best points of the mach at 30-all;  it ended with a Gabashvili hitting a winner into the open court after a 24-shot rally. Nadal took his time to catch his breath before serving down break point, and Maria issued Nadal his second time violation of the match, resulting in the loss of a first serve. Gabashvili then broke Nadal.

    As Nadal walked back to his bench he wagged his finger at the chair umpire and proceeded to tell him he was wrong to give him the violation at that point in the match (players are allowed 25 seconds between points) because the two had just played a long rally.

    “Put the watch there [pointing on court] and then you don’t have to do nothing, Pascal,” Nadal said, implying the chair umpire needed to use his discretion as opposed to just count the seconds on the clock.

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  • Published On Apr 16, 2014
  • Watch: Brooklyn Decker smashed a racket during a tennis lesson from Andy Roddick

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    Brooklyn Decker going all Andy Roddick on a tennis racket? Where’s the footage, internet?

    The actress and SI Swimsuit veteran appeared on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson last night to promote her new television show Friends With Better Lives, and it turns out she’s just as hot-headed on the tennis court as her husband.

    Decker told Ferguson she refuses to play tennis with Roddick because she’ll “always be the worst tennis player in the house.” Wait, Andy doesn’t let you win a few games, Brooklyn?

    “When you’re married to an athlete there’s no ‘letting win,’” Decker said. “That’s not even in their vocabulary.”

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  • Published On Apr 15, 2014
  • Daily Bagel: Dominika Cibulkova chooses Malaysian Open over Fed Cup

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

    • Video: Tommy Robredo’s 31-year old legs can still motor through the dirt.

    • While her Slovakian teammates are playing in the Fed Cup this week in Quebec, Dominika Cibulkova chose to fly all the way to Kuala Lumpur. She was also pleased that after finally breaking into the top 10, she didn’t have to answer questions about her inability to do so.

    “Finally, I am in the top 10 and don’t have to answer questions about it.

    “Of course, I want to go further as I am playing good tennis. I am ready to do better,” said Dominika.

    “I will take it one match at a time but of course, I am going to do 100 per cent here,” said Dominika, who turned professional in 2004.

    Dominika said she is still jet-lagged but hopes to overcome it before her first round match.

    “So far, it has been terrible as I travelled from the US, so it was not easy waking up in the morning today.

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  • Published On Apr 15, 2014
  • Photos: Rafael Nadal has a horrible poker face

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    Rafael Nadal could not outwit No. 1 female poker player Vanessa Selbst. (VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

    For the last two years, Rafael Nadal has been honing his poker game as an ambassador for PokerStars — one of the stranger sponsorship pairings in tennis — and he even won an exhibition tournament in Prague last December.

    But Nadal was no match in a heads-up game against the world-No. 1 female poker player Vanessa Selbst in Monte Carlo last week. It’s all for a good cause though, as 5,000 Euros were donated to charity for the event.

    Nadal playing poker is always an amusing thought given how demonstrative and fired up he gets on the tennis court. Put it this way: What in the world does Rafael Nadal’s poker face look like?

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  • Published On Apr 15, 2014


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