US DC performance analysis..eurosport

pound cat


To be able to compete on clay, you need to playA LOT on the surface and beVERY patient.


Patrick McEnroe's selection of Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish, Bob and Mike Bryan should have travelled to Seville better prepared with more clay court matches under their belts.

In 2004, Roddick played eight matches on clay prior to the final while Fish played just one clay-court match this season and only 20 of his 153 professional performances this year were on crushed brick.

At least Roddick has proven he can play on the surface as his record of three titles in Houston, Atlanta and St Pölten, plus two other finals suggest.


In practice at the Estadio Olimpico, neither Roddick nor Fish looked at ease on the surface.

As Friday's singles rubbers unfolded what became apparent was their inability to slide proficiently into their groundstrokes. Instead, the pair had to rely instead on short-step footwork.

The sliding shot used so effectively by Carlos Moya and Rafael Nadal enabled the Spaniards more time on the ball in comparison to the Americans who often &lsquocut' and floated strokes back.

As soon as Roddick and Fish fell behind, the pair became too anxious to finish the points quickly, as a result of their inability to sustain a long rally and work their opponent around the court to create an opening.

So it really did come as no surprise when Moya and Nadal won the singles rubbers to give Spain a commanding 2-0 lead, and, in effect, the title: only one nation has ever come back from a 0-2 deficit and win the Davis Cup in the competition's 114-year history.


Yes, the United States have a team capable of winning the title on hard court surfaces.

But as captain McEnroe suggested, clay won't go away, especially with the emergence of South American countries sure to challenge for the Davis Cup trophy in future.


Bob and Mike Bryan silenced the Spanish crowd on Saturday with an exhibition of top-quality doubles.


Andy Roddick proved how much the Davis Cup meant to him with a gutsy performance against Moya even though his first service delivery wasn't firing effectively.


Mardy Fish. A good hard-courter but other players must be tried out before he gets to play in another clay court tie.


Many American commentators believe Vince Spadea was unlucky not to be selected ahead of

Fish in the first place. Justified another selection in future after a solid season.


Patrick McEnroe extended his contract through 2007 recently. He'll get another final.


Certainly the emergence of Rafael Nadal has fired belief that Spain can build a team around this big-match player in the future. However, they are still likely to become unstuck on the faster surfaces.

Roddick predicted Rafael Nadal to become "one of the best clay-court players in the world" but the youngest winner of the Davis Cup needs to improve his first serve. Also needs to be injury-free in 2005 to rank inside the Top 20.


Carlos Moya fulfilled his dream of winning a Davis Cup for Spain with immaculate performances over Fish and Roddick. We'll forget the tears Charly in light of the heartache of missing out in 2000.


Tommy Robredo: Will he ever be more than a doubles, or &lsquodead' rubber player for Spain?


Juan Carlos Ferrero got the second singles berth, but was lucky his feelings about losing out to Nadal in the selection on opening day didn't affect the rest of the Spanish team. The former world number one finishes an injury-plagued season on a winning note and with few points to defend in 2005, expect a march on Paris.


And a TIN STAR to the partisian Spanish crowd for their poor sportsmanship....the boos, whistles, blowing horns when roddick was serving, etc. marred the otherwise terrific event. and gave Spain a blackeye. forshame.


I loved the Spanish crowd. I imagine tennis would be more enjoyable (to the average viewer) if more crowds were allowed to react like that. My one complaint is that for both moya and roddick they wouldn't calm down until after the 1st serve. I bet neither player had a very high 1st serve percentage :).

pound cat

It's that hot Spanish blood seen in S. American tennis fans as well. Better than the usually up-tight N. American fans IMO.


Free_Martha said:
And a TIN STAR to the partisian Spanish crowd for their poor sportsmanship....the boos, whistles, blowing horns when roddick was serving, etc. marred the otherwise terrific event. and gave Spain a blackeye. forshame.

It's not like non of Roddick's opponents have been on the other side of what you mentioned. If anything, Roddick will be happy most of his matches played are on surfaces/atmosphere/environment more favourable to him.


Hall of Fame

Not to mention the easy draws Roddick always gets. We never see a stat of Roddick on how well he did against top 10 opponents.

American tennis is slipping big time. Agassi about to retire, it leaves 1 player in the top 20 and he isn't doing very well. Hope to see some new American talent next year, this crew is a bunch is not ready for prime time.


Hall of Fame
The Spanish crowd was great -- especially for such a big crowd.

To put my comments in perspective -- I was there in Barcelona and in Sevilla.

And I thought the Barca crowd was awful. The Sevilla one was obviously partisan, but I thought they were pretty fair overall.

Did any of the rest of you notice the fact that Andy and Mardy were applauding their opponents' winners, even in Davis Cup.

Guess that's an American thing. The Spanish don't do it. Marat sometimes does. But I don't think that either Andy or Mardy was doing it as anything but a sportsman-like gesture.

And I noticed a couple times when there was a questionable call, and the chair was going to get out of his seat, Moya said there was no need, the ball was in the USA's favor.

When Andy hugged Carlos at the end, and then hugged the rest of the Spanish team, it only confirmed this was not an unfair event. Yes, the Spanish won based on their choice of surface, but the next time the two teams meet, the USA will do the same to them. It's the way of Davis Cup.

Well done to both teams.

BTW, re the first serve groans, we never understood it. Every time the USA hit a fault, the crowd would groan. They didn't whistle or cheer, it was strange. It was as if they didn't think we should get a second serve. :lol:

So the USA fans started doing that after the Spanish players hit a fault, and the crowd didn't like it one bit. But what could they say?

But all the players got used to some groans after their first serve. The crowd was pretty quiet during play. For a Davis Cup final, it was fairly tame, especially given the number of people in the stands.