Tommy – more than a pinball wizard

4 Jun

Super serve                        4 down!
Tommy Haas the victor. 35 and going strong

Thirty five year years young, Germany’s Tommy Haas showed that old guys rule when he blasted his way into the French Open 1/4 finals today with a thumping win over Mikhail Youzhny. Haas has been a clay court revelation in 2013, especially for a player with a self confessed preference for hardcourt. He won his 14th ATP title earlier this year on the clay at Munich and has risen to a ranking of #13.

Haas is a survivor. He has had to endure multiple shoulder, elbow and hip surgeries over the years, and has seen his ranking plummet to the 370’s as recently as 2011. By winning his 4th round match today in Paris, Tommy Haas has the distinction of achieving the full set of career Grand Slam 1/4 finals. A fitting record for a genuine stalwart of the game. In fact Haas’s longevity makes sense when in a recent interview he conceded he “didn’t know what he would do when and if he stopped playing”, and that “tennis is all I know”.

Lucky wristband?Bullseye!

Haas has broken a couple of quirky statistics here – it took him the most number of match points ever to close out the match against big John Isner – not surprising that record is against Isner with his booming serve. Haas is the oldest 1/4 finalist since Andre Agassi at the 2005 US Open, and was quoted at his post match press conference to be “really proud to make the 1/4’s here for the first time”. In a fitting comment he said “he is smarter in how he trains, how he eats and how he recovers” – who said you can’t teach old dogs new tricks.



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