Michael Russell is 35. And he’s playing the best tennis of his career. He was clearly ebullient about his win yesterday, an upset victory over 3-seed Igor Sijsling, and obviously looking forward to his 2nd career semifinals. His first semis appearance was only 15 months ago in his hometown of Houston at the Clay Court Championships at River Oaks. Which is another great venue by the way, if you’ve never been. Albeit in an irrepressible, sweltering, vast and barren Metropolitan Area, much unlike Newport. But I digress.
After his Challenger victory in Manta, Ecuador, last Saturday and the long commute to New England, you’d think Russell would be beat. But as you can see, he hasn’t lost a step. This press conference occurred less than five minutes after the man walked off the court following a grueling 3-setter in singles. He was out the door and playing a match no more than 8 minutes later with doubles partner Denis Kudla.
The best part was when he mentioned that his wife was in the crowd, but knew when to leave–in the third set.
‘Muscles’ Russell has a big chance to commandeer the day tomorrow, due to the scrubbing of all matches at the tournament today. He and Nico Mahut have been relegated to Court 1 at 10:00 a.m., while the other semi-finalists will simultaneously do battle on Center Court in front of a packed house and a Tennis Channel audience. If Muscles pulls another upset, you’ll see him live on Center Court at 2:00 p.m. going for his first ATP pro title. Good luck to @MRussellTennis! Though I do miss the days of yore with @djmruss.