Fourhand: Andy Murray writes letter to his childhood self & more
It's been a wet Wimbledon to date, not because of lachrymose players wrenched by their defeats (though surely there have been those) but rather due to Mother Nature wreaking havoc in the skies above the All England Club. That said, your loyal Spin keeper takes these rain-delayed orders of play in stride and offers you a few amuse-bouches you may have missed in this first half of the fortnight:
MURRAY TALKS TO HIMSELF That might not seem anything new, but in truth, Andy Murray—the UK's great hope, now all the more hopeful after Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal's ousters—takes a different tack with it. ESPN The Magazine's new issue highlights a number of formidable athletes writing letters to their younger selves, ranging from Gabrielle Douglas to Abby Wambach.
EYE ON THE PRIZE America's most-tattooed tennis star, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, has been known to resort to a gimmick or two over time. The knee-high socks, the occasional wearing of basketball shoes, the funky clothes and hairstyles (and colors) ... and yesteryear's tennis-ball dress. This time she went from simple loud hues to some of the most advanced technology on the planet, documenting her Wimbledon campaign via Google Glass. (Former Indiana University basketball star Victor Oladipo, Thursday night's No. 2 pick in the NBA Draft, apparently copped her style.) What's too bad for Mattek-Sands is that Glass can't keep forehands in the court for you—thus she bowed out early at SW19 to Angelique Kerber, whose shots just kept coming back.
Bonus via Mashable: Don't look now, but Americans (allegedly) love tennis more than any other sport. The data may not seem to support the facts on the ground as we enthusiasts know them, but it makes for an interesting data dissection nonetheless.
HARD-KNOCK LIFE Life can be hard out there for a ball girl. The one hit by Milos Raonic's 128-mph serve during his defeat of Carlos Berlocq knows this for truth, having left the court in tears, according to various media reports. Perhaps the innocent abuse via ball—Raonic meant no ill, of course—was a sort of karma for the Canadian, as he lost all of one round later.
MEANWHILE, BACK IN THE STATES Former Wimbledon finalists Monica Seles (1992) and Jim Courier (1993) had a hit-and-giggle in the midst of a Manhattan intersection, even on a grass court.
Your turn, Spin fans: What is, to you, the biggest story of Week 1 at this Slam? Is it Federer's unceremonious loss, Rafa's own woes, Maria Sharapova's shocking defeat, or another storyline entirely? Sound off—and take cover.
Got a thought, a tip, or a point to make? Hit me on Twitter @jonscott9.