10 months of tennis are not enough to satisfy my desire of watching live matches, streams, following scores and reading the news. And at the end of the season (or close to it) I always feel I didn’t learn enough, I didn’t see enough and I eagerly wait for the next season to start. Last year I nearly skipped the New Year’s Party because there was tennis on TV. It is one of the things I love the most in my life.
When I left for Sweden I put Stockholm Open on the “to do” list. This tournament has been on this list last year but due to objective reasons it was replaced from the top of the priority list by the World Tour Finals in London. I wanted to go to Stockholm Open and well, I did. And I got my share of tennis for this Autumn, 9 days of it. This time it was a bit different because in a way I was there in the middle of it all, or close to the middle, let’s leave the hot spot for the ones who deserve it without any doubt: the players. So between early mornings writing homework and going to school and late nights I got a bit of tennis every day. A set here, a full match there, an intense moment following some long rally and a professional attitude.
Matches started with “One” from SHM and really nice lights that gave tennis a somehow “show”vibe. And sometimes it made the players dance, you could see some bouncing a bit. 5 minutes later though they were focused and really into the game.
Of course I have a list of personal highlights. Probably the most important one is watching the Romanian tennis player Marius Copil.
I’ve been lucky enough to see 3 of the 4 matches he played in Stockholm. He has a lot of potential, I really wish and hope that he breaks the boundaries of top 100 and starts playing bigger matches, he needs the experience of playing against great tennis players. This is probably what he lacks cause he’s got everything else (my opinion but given the fact that he is Romanian I have no idea how much objectivity I have in my statement). The second personal highlight was seeing the Sweds playing their home tournament. Insane atmosphere at their matches and you could see how the support of the public was carrying them point by point.
I’ve never seen Joachim Johansson play before, neither Jonas Björkman, so it was really nice to see something new and rather amazing.
The doubles semifinal on Saturday was probably one of the nicest matches I’ve seen all week (Bjorkman/Lindstedt vs Gonzales/Lipsky 6-4, 6-4). I also enjoyed very much the quarterfinal between Gulbis and Janowicz (Gulbis 7-5, 4-6, 6-3) . Both singles semifinals and the final were matches to watch and I did see most of them. All three-setters which meant the audience was more than content for getting to see long matches and so was I.
I really enjoyed seeing some players again (starting with Ferrer, Nieminen, Garcia-Lopez and Qureshi/Rojer in the doubles) and I was very happy to see others for the first time (Janowicz, Gulbis and of course Dimitrov). And I really hope I am going to have the opportunity to see them and many more again either in this tournament or in another. So far the next stop is, I hope, the home tournament in Bucharest in April.
And to wrap it up I would like to say a big thank you to all the amazing people I’ve met and worked with this week. I couldn’t feel more happy, lucky and blessed and I have no words to describe the full experience.
Game, set, match, championship: Grigor Dimitrov, Qureshi/Rojer.