Lounging in the living room
Andrea Petkovic, your ESPN.com guest blogger this week from New York, produced a terrific result late Tuesday night. The 22-year-old German knocked off No. 17 seed Nadia Petrova -- the finalist last week in New Haven -- 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (4). After winning in a tiebreaker, she danced on the court and that effort has already been posted on YouTube. She is also playing doubles and mixed doubles. Here is her third blog entry:
Did you know that I like to call locker rooms at Grand Slams living rooms? First of all you have to imagine the locker rooms at the U.S. Open as big, warm, very welcoming rooms with (guess what!) lockers all over the place. I often hear from men that a woman is nothing but a problem and now -- just for a second -- picture more than a hundred of those little "problems" walking around the locker room, all stressed because of having to play matches and caged in together like animals. Isn't that funny? So when you have a late night match like I did Tuesday, you don't want to join the craziness of the player's lounge where all the managers, player's guests, wives, husbands, grandmothers, grandfathers, children, dogs, cats and birds are stationed.
Players eat there, lie there, sleep there and especially wait there for a long, long time for their matches to be called. And insider information: I hear from a reliable source that the men in the men's locker rooms walk around naked all day. We don't do that, but I guess some of you would pay millions to catch a glimpse.
So there is this little quiet area in the locker room that has four TV screens covering the matches from all the courts. We have the choice of what to watch so most of the time we watch women's matches but every now and then a men's match happens to appear on the screens. What I love to do is sit next to the girl who turned it on and ask girl XY: "What are you watching?" Girl XY replies: "Name X against name Y are playing; it a good/bad match." Me: "Do you play after them?" (Ah, tricky questions, that most of them answer yes, because if they answer no, I will definitely ask why she's watching.) So girl XY: "Yes." If I know she's not, I already start laughing inwardly and say: "He's nice." Girl XY: "Who Y? Yeeeah, he's a great player." So I say: "But he's not that bad looking, either." Embarrassment, blushing, caught, smirking. "Yeah, he's so hot." Hahahaha.
So that's how I spent my time Tuesday while waiting for my match that didn't start before 8:20 p.m. You see, I had a lot of time to kill. But in the end I beat Petrova 7-6 in the third. When I had my first match point I thought: "Yeah, he's so hot."
Pause, smile, win.
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