So back in 2010 I spoke quite excitedly about a young Polish tennis player, Jerzy Janowicz, whom I'd watched in the US Open qualifying. "Too good for me" to be able to count on him being in qualifying for very long.
And then in 2011, I was left baffled, as he was again in the qualifying and looked really not that good.
Did he just have an off day in 2011? Or was 2011 the normal, and 2010 the match of his life.
Today we found out the answer. Janowicz was just good enough in 2012 to escape the qualifying at the US Open, and he came into qualifying for this week's ATP Masters 1000 event in Paris, one of the top tier tournies right below the Grand Slams in ranking points, ranked in the high 60s. And he beat Dmitry Tursunov, once ranked in the top 20, and Florent Serra, once ranked in the top 40, to qualify. Then he beat the #19 ranked Philipp Kohlschreiber. Then he beat the #16 ranked (and 13th seed) Marin Cilic. And now he's just finished beating Andy Murray, the guy who won the gold in the Olympics and the US Open and is currently ranked #3 in the world. And he did this after losing a tight first set, then having to prevail in a 2nd set tiebreaker. Well, maybe he's just had the best week of tennis in his life, this could in fact be the best week of tennis in his life beating #19, #16 and #3, and he could still have a nice tennis career for a very long time and wind up in the top 20. And if that's "all" he does, I can look at my blog post from 2010 and say I knew him when...
It also sets him apart from a player like Ryan Harrison, who has suffered from a lot of tough draws where he always seems to have a top-ranked player in the first or second round. But Harrison never seems to beat any of them. He takes a set here or there, he always looks nice, I don't even want to say if it's Janowicz or Harrison who is actually the better player, but right now today you've got to put money on the guy who just beat #19, #16 and #3 in quick succession, over the guy who occasionally takes a set from #3. Harrison is an American, so I hope he can pick up his game that extra little bit, but today, I'm hugely excited by Jerzy Janowicz's run.
- The Brillig Blogger
- A blog wherein a literary agent will sometimes discuss his business, sometimes discuss the movies he sees, the tennis he watches, or the world around him. In which he will often wish he could say more, but will be obliged by business necessity and basic politeness and simple civility to hold his tongue. Rankings are done on a scale of one to five Slithy Toads, where a 0 is a complete waste of time, a 2 is a completely innocuous way to spend your time, and a 4 is intended as a geas compelling you to make the time.