...is no big secret. Now, after having finally gotten the opportunity to watch the mighty senior wonder Paul Harhuis in action; I think I finally solved the riddle as to why this otherwise merely solid, above average tour player is doing so much more on the seniors tour. His big secret is simply that he's the only senior I've seen who doesn't look like he's put on an ounce of weight from his full-time playing days. Stich used to be a lean and graceful mover, but now he's just carrying around too much weight around the belly for his frame type (i.e. still has the same chicken legs and arms). The guy used to glide around the court like nothing, but now he looks like he lumbers and plods to the ball which has made his once deadly precise forehand and backhand quite predictable in landing a few inches wide, long, etc. His movement is more penguin than black cat now. Pioline used to be an athletic, dynamic mover for his husky frame; now it's like watching Al Bundy, fee-fy-foe-twinkie rather than bannana. Muster is an absolute shell of his former self. In contrast to many of the seniors, he still puts his game face on (i.e. Stich looks like he's having an extra-marrital affair with Daphne Deckers dressed as the tooth fairy every night judging by the wry grin he seems to flash after every point win or lose)...yet, it's just an act as all the guys know there's no longer any real bark behind the bite. To Muster's credit though, the man still winds up with intention. He hasn't gentrified his game any the way Bruguera has, he's a pretty-straightforward, meat and potatoes guy who only knows one way to play and that's hard and bullish. Too bad the bull, now has a pot belly. He's still a ton of fun to watch though. His biggest problem is that he's no longer that consistent, he misfires quite a bit more regularly now even on seemingly routine shots whereas before he really was machine like. I'm starting to think that there's a reason the other top guys didn't seem to regard him as being as talented as them. It's easier to tell who is more naturally talented in my opinion, by whose strokes go the most out of calibration when the constant drilling stops. Muster without the constant drilling seems to prove that he's really not a natural; but rather a guy who needs to ridden like a horse everyday in practice to be the best that he can be. He can't freelance it the way Leconte can, who even if he sat out a year, you feel like he'd somehow manage to buggy whip in a miracle game or two here and there. In my opinion, the reason Cash has managed to stay competitive on the seniors tour at his age is simply because the guy looks like he's still ready for a bar fight...he has to be to keep up with the younger (but fatter) guys. Back on point, looking at Harhuis now; I'd say he's playing closer to his prime level on tour than any of the seniors right now; or at least to me, it looks like his game has dipped the least ins so far as to me at least he looks like he's exactly the same player he was on tour whereas all the other guys have clearly lost a step...or two...or three. The interesting thing to me though is that his best level seems to be not THAT much better than guys who were better on tour than him but have now let themselves go a little. Another thing is simply that it just looks to me like when I look in Paul Harhuis' eyes; he just wants it more than these bloated "champions" of the "champions tour" or "legends tour" or what have you. In other words, you can tell that winning these matches means more to him than it does to the other guys who already know what it is to get all the glory from their days on tour. This is his chance and time to capitalize and shine in my opinion, and he knows it and he looks like he's loving and relishing this "second lease on life" he seems to have gotten. There's just this raw, school boy verve about him, a kind of hop in his step and an aliveness to his style, that just gives me this feeling that this all feels alive and well and REAL to him; whereas with guys like Stich and Muster and Pioline it's more a kind of I don't want to say fake banter, but rather something just feels a bit more hallow about them and other seniors. It's like they're the wives from The Stepford Wives now, it's something not quite real and when it's not quite real it's hard to take the matches seriously as anything more than glorified exhibitions, almost like a kind of travelinc circus show or "reunion tour." Of the seniors, I've seen the ones who make the matches feel less hallow and echoey are Cash, Courier, McEnroe, and Harhuiss. Final comment, is that Pioline to me looked a little nervous and timid in playing Harhuis. Like he would be more comfortable in losing and playing against a fellow "name" player than to him. I think these seniors know that the public expects them to beat the likes of "Dr. Who," a.k.a. Paul Harhuis...yet they know he's in better shape than they are and that there's a good chance they'll lose to him in their now slightly less than jockly state of yore.