Donuts (and Bagels) in Delray Beach: Sunday Recap
Jonathan Morgan for Tennis East Coast
As I arrived, I was able to see my friend Zachary Pelts’ last few points vs. Mischa Zverev. Pelts is an unranked player with no match experience, no nothing. He works at an academy nearby and signed in on Friday to play. After the match, in which he lost 0-6, 0-6, but he was able to win 13 points (20% of the points), I was able to ask him a few questions.
Me: “Zach, how was it to play against a guy at this level?”
Pelts: “Hey thanks for coming out, man. Me, I was nervous as f***. Just call me Mr. Tight. I played like a 12-year-old girl in rural Mississippi out there.”
Me: “What would you say was the biggest difference between you and a player like him?”
Pelts: “Honestly, not that much. In the rallies, he really didn’t do anything with the ball. Ok, he had a very big serve, and I was very nervous, but the difference overall was not astronomical. I am even more motivated after this loss to continue to train and get better.”
Of course, to the crowd of spectators watching the match, who made comments like, “This guy is like Walter Mitty”, “He got his clock cleaned”, and “What’s he doing out there?” might disagree with his assessment. But then again, how easy is it to sit on the sidelines and pass judgement?
On another outside court, Wayne Odesnik was up to his usual antics. Yelling at the ballkids, getting into the opponent’s (Sekou Bangoura) grill, and when a spectator cheered for him, he turned and said “Shut up! I’m serving!” Very disrespectful from Odesnik as usual. He ended up winning over Bangoura, 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-4, and the handshake was very cold, to put it mildly.
In other qualifying, American Steve Johnson won over Sebatian Rivera by 6-3, 6-0, Sam Groth super served his way to a 7-5, 6-3 win over Ivan Endara, Rhyne Williams beat Pedro Sakamoto 6-2, 6-3, Bjorn Phau eased past Daniel Kerznerman 6-1, 6-4, Robby Ginepri began his climb back into the game with a 7-6(6), 6-3 very tight win over Ruben Bemelmans, and Gastao Elias scraped past Alexander Zverev 4-6, 7-5, 6-4.
But the match of the day was easily Andy Roddick vs. Goran Ivanisevic in the Champion’s Tour on the Main Stadium Court. It was a light hearted affair, replete with jokes, and Roddick prevailing 6-4, 6-3 in the end. After the warm up, Roddick said: “Whoo! That was a tough warmup! I’m spent already!” to audience laughter.
Early in the first set, Roddick was called for a foot fault. He turned to the lineswoman and said: “Foot fault? This is Senior’s Tennis! What’s next? Rabies shots for the Easter Bunny?”
At 0-2 in the first, a baby was crying in the crowd. Ivanisevic turned to the location of the baby and said: “No, no, don’t cry! It’s only 2-0!”
A few games later, Roddick threw down his biggest serve of the day, a 132 miles per hour ace. The crowd oohed and aahed, and Roddick turned to us and said: “I hope you enjoyed that, I won’t be able to lift my arm for a week!”
At 5-4 in the first, there was a promotion over the loudspeaker advertising donuts for whoever tweeted the tournament and won the drawing. There is a Dunkin’ Donuts literally within walking distance of the tournament. Roddick of course, at the changeover, grabs his phone and tweets the tournament! He wanted those donuts!
At the end of the first, the Volley Girls (group of girls in matching uniforms dancing) came out and did a dance to music. A provocative dance. After they finished and left the court, Goran jumped up from his chair and ran after them!
Early in the 2nd set, Ivanisevic was down 0-40. A big serve, and it is 15-40. Another ace and it is 30-40. Yet another big bomb and it is back to deuce. Roddick: “I hate when you do that!” Ivanisevic: “Yeah, look who is talking!”
At one point, Goran disagreed with the chair umpire about a shot, and during the argument, unlaced his shoe, sniffed it, made a disgusted face, and threw it.
Later in the 2nd, another crying baby. Well, Goran knows how to handle this. He gets a ball, gives it to the baby, and the baby stops crying! Lots of jocularity, lots of interacting with the crowd.
There were various smaller antics as well, such as over exaggerated grunting, usually from Ivanisevic, and cheeky points, like Goran hitting balls 30 rows into the stands and challenging the call anyway. It was all in good fun.
Late in the 2nd set, the donuts came out! Roddick and Ivanisevic both had themselves a donut. Then, Roddick did a series of impressions. First, Agassi and an extremely exaggerated pigeon-toed walk. Then, he did the impression of Goran Ivanisevic’s serve! “Yeah, yeah, very goooood,” Goran called out in response.
Then, Nadal. Rolls up the sleeves, runs to the baseline, starts jumping up and down, digs in his shorts, massive grunt, massive fist pump.
Then, McEnroe. Very exaggerated serve motion, and his serve was just out. Too bad someone in the crowd yelled out, “You cannot be serious” to which Andy replied: “Yeah, always someone who ruins the joke.”
Then, some guy called out for Roddick to do Sharapova. “Yeah, you’d like that, wouldn’t you? Freak.” The crowd was in stitches the entire time.
At 5-3, 40-15, with 2 match points for for Roddick in the 2nd, I couldn’t take it any longer and called out: “Goran, we love you anyway!” He turned to me and said: “Thank you I, love you too!”
After the match, Roddick was given something of a lifetime achievement award in addition to his Champion’s Tour trophy. A nice video montage was shown, with legends like Sampras, Agassi, and Connors saying positive things about Andy, who then gave a small speech. Ivanisevic walked into the locker room the long way and spent a good amount of time with autographs and pictures, delighting the crowd with a smile, as always. He will be coaching Cilic this week during the tournament. As for Roddick, he will be going back to his Fox Sports commentary work as well as Brooklyn Decker.
Well, that’s it from Delray for Sunday. Bye for now. Have a great night, and remember, the world is yours.