andre agassi

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Gautam Gambhir: What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t


Gautam Gambhir

What he said:

“I have enjoyed when a gorgeous cricket ball declines the advances of my well-manicured cricket bat. But loaded with the perseverance of a sincere lover, my bat wins.”

Gautam Gambhir waxes lyrical on the value of practiced perseverance. The Indian opener confesses, that unlike Andre Agassi, he loves his sport.

Gambhir wrote:

“Whenever I look at the Gautam Gambhir in the mirror it seems tennis star Andre Agassi is reading out passages from his autobiography, Open. Agassi says he ‘hated tennis with dark and secret passion’. This is after tennis gave him identity, fortune, silverware, a few wanted and unwanted perks that a successful, young man is prone to get, later on a beautiful wife and most importantly adrenaline of being in a competition. But the fact is he hated his sport. You’d say either Agassi teamed up with the publishers to sell his book, or he’s just being cynical. Sorry, neither.”

Gambhir adds:

“Unlike Agassi, I love my sport. I can watch any game of cricket on TV. Even if the repeat telecast is for the 600th time, I’d be glued with excitement of a woman watching serials on conniving ladies. I might bat like a novice in the middle but I just love batting and its romance. I have enjoyed when a gorgeous cricket ball declines the advances of my well-manicured cricket bat. But loaded with perseverance of a sincere lover my bat wins. It then starts to caress, cuddle and later even lovingly thump its once shining lady.

But the real challenge lies beyond these dreamy passages. You wake up on a match day and you are in company of fear of failure. You turn on the shower and instead of water you have expectations beating on your body. You dress up but in reality you are wearing the image of a celebrity that the outside world wants to see you as – a champion or a loser.”

On Andre Russel, his Kolkata Knight Riders teammate:

“Even in the past he has been our Superman. On most occasions he’s dancing, grooving, laughing and when he gets bored he does all of these all over again. He secretly admits that he wants to dress up like a Jamaican but can’t do it as he’d stand out among ‘sober Indians’.

Amid all this, he is still a bloody good cricketer. There is a method to his power-hitting. Just recall his use of the depth of the crease while hitting those sixes against Chennai Super Kings. He does 100 meters under 11 seconds which I think anyone having a Jamaican passport does. I told him that his Mohawk hairstyle needs a bit of a mojo as it has flattened out. He just gives me a hearty Jamaican laugh as if to say, ‘No mojo skippermaan, my hair needs Viagra!’ Don’t be surprised if Andre actually tells me this one day.”

What Gambhir really meant:

“My love of the game is based on practice and perseverance. The more I persevere and practice, the better I connect. “

What he definitely didn’t:

“Now if James Anderson and company were here, I’d show them how well I’ve mastered their ‘Lady in Red’. For now, I love hammering the ‘White Widow’ on Indian soil.”

 

Andre Agassi: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Andre Agassi in Indian Wells in 2006

What he said:

“So Dad, please don’t ever stop telling me what to do.”

Andre Agassi, in his acceptance speech at the Newport International Tennis Hall of Fame, thanked his dad Mike for his advice over the years that included exhorting him to win Wimbledon and all the Slams, getting into the Hall of Fame, and marrying his current wife, Steff Graf.

What he really meant:

“I could always do with more validation. Thanks, Dad.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Just don’t remind me to floss at night. (Steffi does that now.)”

Michael Chang: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Michael Chang, Thriftway Championships Cincinn...

What he said:

“I would have thought that he would know me better than that; that me going out and expressing that has nothing to do with saying, ‘I’m better than you, or ‘God loves me more than he loves you.’ That’s not the case."

Michael Chang is cut up with Andre Agassi’s remarks in his autobiography, Open. The Las Vegan criticised his Christian faith and Michael’s habit of thanking God for his match results.

What he really meant:

“Andre, it’s the same God—for you and me. No favourites with him.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Burn it, Burn Open.”

“Andre, get me your publisher. I have memoirs to make public, as well.”

Andre Agassi: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Cover of "Open: An Autobiography" 

What he said:

"They know already what it took me decades to find out: To shine in secret, and to give when there’s no one applauding.It’s not to late to be inspired. It’s not too late to change. It’s not too late."

Andre Agassi points out that the needy children he built a school for need no lessons in life from him. They know the importance of doing their best with or without an audience.

What he really meant:

“There’s much to learn outside the tennis court. And in the strangest places.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Read Open to discover more such gems.”

Andre Agassi: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Cover of "Open: An Autobiography"

What he said:

"I fell in love with tennis far too late in my life, but the reason I have everything I hold dear is because tennis has loved me back."

Andre Agassi admits that he was not always pleased with having to grind his way on the tennis circuit. He learnt to love the game as he grew older.

What he really meant:

“Tennis and Steffi (Graf) loved me back, man. They sure did.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Haven’t you read Open yet?”

Maria Sharapova conquers Rome and Samantha Stosur: Paris awaits


Maria Sharapova at 2009 Roland Garros, Paris, ...

Up until the 15th of May 2011, Maria Sharapova had two clay court titles under her belt.

Strasbourg 2010 and Amelia Island 2008 were her only clay court trophies of 22 on the WTA Tour.

But not now. With her victory over Samantha Stosur at Rome on Sunday, the Siberian staked her claim to the French Open this year.She stalked her adversaries and crept up on her prey, unsuspecting. Beware—Maria, the huntress, is on the prowl.

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Tennis Bytes:Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi triumph in Chennai and other stories


Leander Paes (the lauda) and his former double...

Image via Wikipedia

Mahesh Bhupathi and Leander Paes have done it again.

The Indian Express triumphed at the 2011 Aircel Chennai Open subduing the Dutch-American pair of Robin Hasse and David Martin 6-2, 6-7 (3), 10-7.

The Chennai tourney has Indian champions once more. This is the first time since 2002 that an Indian pair have inscribed their names on the trophy. It was the duo of Bhupathi and Paes who claimed it then as well.

Somdev Devvarman came close in 2009, losing to Marin Cilic in the final.

It was fitting that the duo came together in the sweltering environs of the South Indian city that boasts the best-known tennis families in India—the Krishnans and the Amritrajs, to clinch their first title this year.

Sceptics felt  that the two would find it difficult to reprise their form of the late 90s and early oo’s, given their aging bodies and slower reflexes.

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