As Rodney Dangerfield might have put it, "I went to a concert the other night, and a tennis match broke out."
There was plenty of entertainment on the court Friday at the bett1HULKS Indoors in Cologne, Germany, including top seed Alexander Zverev's three-set win over qualifier Lloyd Harris. But some the most memorable scenes from the pandemic-induced pop-up tournament took place once play had paused for a changeover, or for a five-minute break between sets.
That's when stuff like this happened:
Yes, that's the Steve Miller Band's 1976 tune "Fly Like an Eagle", playing over second-set match stats from the Dennis Novak-Alejandro Davidovich Fokina quarterfinal. Tennis nerd-dom never sounded so good!
I implore you to check out the entire 4:40 clip, which includes second-set highlights set to a soundtrack. They've been cut in such a way that it truthfully feels like you're watching a music video.
But that wasn't all from the Cologne cover band. As one of the few journalists on site, Jannik Schneider of Germany's Advantage-Podcast shared another song with those watching and listening from home.
"So far this is the saddest thing I have seen at a Livesportevent," Schneider wrote. To be clear, he was referring to the scene, not the music.
And with that, here's James Brown's "Get Up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine":
There is a fantastic Liveband playing during changeovers at ATP 250 Cologne where no fans are allowed due to covid numbers.— Jannik Schneider (@schnejan) October 16, 2020
So far this is the saddest thing I have seen at a Livesportevent. A passionate band and no one is here (TV most of the time advertisment during breaks) pic.twitter.com/iZVWSjoo8c
But this band doesn't just churn out seventies hits. Like the players hitting on the all-grey court nearby, it showed its versatility by moving into the 21st century—with a rendition of Outkast's 2003 smash, "Hey Ya!"
At one point, the chair umpire buts in—please, show some respect!—with the following message: "Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Bautista Agut is receiving a medical time-out."
What's cooler than being cool? This seven-piece band. Let's hope they keep bringing the hits all weekend long.