September 12, 2018, Umag, Croatia
GMP Cup 2018
I played singles and doubles today; singles against Radomila Martinicova and doubles with Ellen Neumann in the 55s.
The singles was actually my second round robin match, but winning it meant I reached the final. Radomila is from Czech Republic and is a nice player but was hampered by an Achilles injury so couldn’t run like she’d wished, especially after drop shots.
In doubles we played against Sylvia Reigl and another Austrian, Maria (who was hampered by a knee injury). I’m playing with Ellen Neumann from Germany who ambitiously entered three events and is now in the final of the 55 singles, doubles and mixed (with Marc Pepin of Canada).
For the obligatory court comment of the day: the courts were playing much better today. The tournament staff was taking clay off of court 11, which is the one where I practiced Monday and played both matches today. Monday the clay was like a pillow, today it was fine. Even though the courts are still very slow and soft I like them.
The one thing that some of the tournament referees are not doing is checking the net height when they put up singles sticks…the net on our court was about two inches low (5 cm)! I noticed it after the first game and a referee was promptly dispatched to measure and fix it. And my opponent hit a lot of balls into the top of the net during the match.
As is normal in ITF seniors tournaments, foot faults are rampant and officials notice and completely ignore foot faults. I saw one player who was footfaulting about 2 feet into the court on most serves, an official was monitoring that match and said he could do nothing unless standing on the court…but he was there to answer calls about line calls and was only 6 inches outside the court. I’m not sure what the solution is but allowing officials standing just outside a court or inside a court to at least warn players about foot faults would be a start. Either that or let players serve from wherever they wish…from the baseline, from the service line, from the net…..we’d all feel like John Isner serving from the net! At least the player I observed foot faulting was not serving and volleying and though the player’s footfaulting may have extended the match it did not impact the outcome.
Tomorrow is the last day of the tournament for me, singles at 9am and doubles not before 11 (more like noon or so). We play Petro Kruger and Susan Jamieson, who are already finished with singles.