My morning began in McDonalds with fries, diet coke, KitKat McFlurry and a stalker! I nearly ended up taking the wrong Metro as my mind was wandering ahead to today’s matches. Found Line 6 and arrived on Centre in time for the players to walk out for the Doubles Final.
I really enjoyed this match, as with a lot of Doubles matches, net play, volleys and winners were on show. Excellent start from the Indo-Pak Express to get the breaks and take the first set 6-2. More of match in the 2nd set but the French duo cannot do enough and the match is over in 2. Great to see new winners, this was their first major trophy.
There was over an hour to wait before the Singles Final so I went for a final look around and check out some information for my Guide to Bercy, which shall be in my Wrap up Report on Tuesday. I also found a good spot to take photos from for the trophy presentations. I then went for a drink (free beer) and to relax before the match.
I went onto Centre at 14.40, as I wanted to get a good seat in the media area. I got to watch the maintenance crew clean the court and put up the net. The arena was filling up nicely as time got closer to 15.00 and was around 95% full when the players took to the court.
An early chance presented to Jo was not taken but Roger certainly took his and in 30 minutes he had wrapped up the first set very comfortably 6-1 though Jo made him fight a little in the last game, taking him to Deuce.
I must admit being slightly disappointed with the crowd today. Without someone like Bongoman to get the crowd going it was rather flat bar a few points. I guess I can understand, Jo was not at his best and a lot of the crowd was French but also supporting Federer. Still, I was hoping for a better atmosphere. The second set was more of a contest and the crowd did get more involved. The body language given off by Jo was, to me, that of a beaten man midway through the set. But wait, what is this, a break point….. but arghhhhhh it goes long. When Roger plays like this there really is not much anyone can do to beat him. We got a tiebreak but, like at the start of the match, Roger had the breakthrough and was never in danger once he got to 4-0. Jo managed to make the tiebreak more respectable but could not get the breaks back and Roger served out the tiebreak 7-3 to take the match 6-1 7-6(3).
There was not a long wait for the press conferences so I attended both. I asked the first question to Jo:
Q. Commiserations, Jo. Can you try and explain what happened in that first set? It looked very tough from where I was.
JOWILFRIED TSONGA: Yeah, it was tough. But I think, you know, it was not a big difference between me and him in this first set, because if I win the first game, you know, it’s another set.
I think he did a good start, and after that he played more relaxed, you know, and was more different.
I was also there for Roger’s but did not ask any question though one I would have asked was kinda mentioned. I would have asked him about the trophy, if it were heavy. He mentioned that is was in reply to the last English question:
I’m just curious, you picked up many trophies in your career, but has anyone actually explained to you what that one represents?
ROGER FEDERER: Not yet. I’m excited to hear.
Q. So are we.
ROGER FEDERER: You don’t know yet?
Q. No idea.
ROGER FEDERER: Let’s leave it up next year when I come back let’s talk about it.
No, but one thing I can tell, it’s heavy. Almost cramped in my biceps. (Laughing.) I have had like two or three other ones that have been very, very heavy.
One was in Gstaad. I got a rock there. I could hardly lift it. I don’t know where else, but there was some other place I could barely not lift the trophy. But this one I could. This is steel, so you can imagine how strong I am. (Laughter.)
So Roger wins his first Paris Masters after becoming the first man to reach all Masters finals. Today was his 99th final and his 69th victory. I had some money left on my pass so after the press conferences I went to the bar, got myself a glass of Moët and toasted his win.
And that is it; the BNP Paribas Paris Masters of 2011 is all over. I hope you have enjoyed my reports. I hope I have managed to give you an insight into the goings on behind the scenes in the media centre. I have enjoyed bringing these reports to you and hope to do so again soon. I will write one final “wrap-up” report on Tuesday so look out for that,
Thank you for reading