I am now a normal person, a normal tennis fan with just a ticket. Lucky enough I got there early so there was no queue to get into the grounds. I had arranged to meet some friends so made my way to Court 17. The Doubles match between Cabal/Farah v Cerretani/Hanescu was first on court but my attention was on the Court behind us. Fernando Verdasco was about to start his practice session so I turned around and took a few videos. I even managed to say “Hola, Buenos Dias” to his Dad which brought a smile to his face.
After watching Nando and the first few games on the match I went off to Court Lenglen where I had my ticket today. I joined the Errani v Ivanovic match with Ana a set to the good. My seat was rather rubbish as it had the stair guardrail in front of it (I really do wish they told you this when buying the tickets). I wanted to take a few photos so I moved to the very back and stayed there until 6-5 in the 2nd set.
I went to Court 14 next where I found Benneteau practicing. Another Doubles match was about to start on Court 16 so I moved there and sat down so I could also overlook Court 14. The Doubles match was Chela/Schwank v Fyrstenberg/Matkowski. As the courts are not far from Lenglen I was able to hear when Errani had won the match so I went back via the food stand. €11 for pasta, Pepsi Max and a bag of crisps. Though expensive the pasta was very nice and you got plenty of it. I split half my can of Pepsi Max when I kicked it over!!
I was expecting Simon v Wawrinka, I got Sharapova v Morita!! They have made a habit of this, swapping matches around without any announcements! I only stayed for 5 games as I value my hearing! I headed for Court 2 to see if there was any chance of a seat there, the answer was no, long queues at all the entrances. I went to sit and watch the big screen by Court 1 at the Place des Mousquetaires. They have a split screen showing 2 matches as well as a scoreboard. I watched Anderson v Berdych for a while and was also scoreboard watching. I realised at this point that Paul-Henri Mathieu had withdrawn from his Doubles match, wise choice after the epic match yesterday. He will need all the energy he can find, though so will his opponent, Marcel Granollers too came though a 5 set match lasting 2 days.
Once again it was back to Lenglen where I stayed for quite a while, as it was a decent match between Simon and Wawrinka. At 4-3 in the 2nd set I went to watch some more Doubles, this time Erlich/Ram v Knowles/Malisse. I got a good seat that enabled me to also watch the big screen by Lenglen that was showing Tsonga v Fognini from Chatrier so I saw Jo bouncing after he won. Shame for Fabio as he was defending a huge chunk of points after his run here last year. X-Man & Knowles were the winners in straight sets after a very entertaining match, lots of lovely volleys etc.
I now need to introduce someone to you, someone who has travelled the world with me and that someone is my Teddy called Thierry. He sits in my bag with his head popping out of the top so he can watch the tennis too. He got a comment today from a lady sat next to me. I mentioned that he likes tennis (he watched the whole Australian Open with me) and earlier in the day had a video taken of him watching Nando practice. She found it rather cute and so do I !
Anyway, back to tennis and I made my final trip back to Lenglen (via the ice cream stand, this time vanilla & chocolate mix) where I stayed for the rest of the evening. I caught the match from the end of the 4th set. As we went into a 5th I was thinking back to last night and hoping that I was not in for another marathon, as I wanted to watch some Novak. Thankfully the match did not last much longer as Stan got his breaks and held on to them to bring the match to a close after 4 hours and 37 minutes.
After the long match there was not much delay before Novak came out. To be honest it was completely one-sided and whilst Devilder avoided the bagel he could not escape the baguette. I thought I would give Devilder a few more games to see if he could make a match of it, so what does he go and do, he breaks Novak, much to the delight of the crowd. Unfortunately it was short-lived as Novak got it straight back so I called it a day at 2-1 and headed for the bus stop.
Hopefully my next seat on Lenglen is better than today’s. I got to see a few matches and the day was not too bad.