February 18, 2011
Fernando Verdasco lost to big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic twice this week, first in the finals of the SAP Open and then in the opening round at Memphis. But he's not worried since neither of these matches were "real."
The ninth-ranked Spaniard dismissed Raonic's victories because they came on faster hard courts rather than the artisan's surface of clay:
"For me that's not a real match in tennis. I hope to play soon against him in clay court to show him what it is to play tennis, and play rallies, and run, and not [just] serve.
"I think he was more lucky than me in the tiebreak. He hit the line at 5-5 with a return and when you are at that point in the match and are lucky to put a ball on the line then you have big options to win the match."
As our friends at @SIOpenSource Tweeted on Thursday: "Some whine with your queso, Nando?"
If hard court tennis isn't "real" tennis, then are we to consider Verdasco's two non-clay tournament titles to be null and void? Does Roger Federer only have one Grand Slam title now? Did Rafael Nadal waste his time retooling his game to improve on grass and hard? Will history judge Pete Sampras to be a lesser player than Gaston Gaudio?
You got beat, Fernando. Deal with it.