Yeah, I could have titled this one “Soderling and Monfils save match points to make it to the Bercy finals” but that wouldn’t reflect how I’m feeling right now. Basically the opposite of this:
My two favorite players in the tournament both lost in the semifinals of the Paris Masters today, despite holding multiple match points against their opponents (Llodra had three, Roger had FIVE.) Soderling weathered the serve-and-volley storm vs. Llodra and recovered from an awful first set tiebreak to win the match: 6-7 (0), 7-5, 7-6 (6). Monfils beat Federer for the first time in his career: 7-6 (7) 6-7 (1) 7-6 (4).
“I went to the limits of myself,” Monfils said after the match.
I’m so jaded in Roger’s case that when his first match point came around I muttered something like “Roger has match points, you know what that means. . .” And I was right! Fed failed to convert and then his game fell apart in the third set tiebreak. He must get the same sinking feeling I do when those match points come around. Sigh.
Roger won more points (125) than Monfils did (121). Which means Roger lost the important ones. Sigh.
Sigh. . .
This has been and will continue to be a fantastic week of indoor hard court tennis. Bercy should steal Monfils’s catchphrase: “I’m French and I’m FAST.” I’ve lost my sentimental favorites at the penultimate moment, but it’s still been a blast watching the crowd rally behind both La Monf and Michael as they overcame formidable opponents like Verdasco, Murray, Djokovic and Isner. Roger played well, though I could have done without the shankeriffic finale. We have a flashy Frenchman in the final vs. a big serving Swede. And I’m still looking forward to the inevitably bizarre trophy ceremony.
AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau via Daylife