Cheryl Murray

  • Nadal and Spain give French TV a punch in the mouth

    2012-03-29 14:30:09

    Back in November, I felt compelled to write a piece on Le Monde and Yannick Noah’s bitter jealousy-filled interview published there concerning Rafael Nadal and Spanish sports in general. I usually don’t like weighing in on topics like that because first, it gives a morsel of legitimacy to what is simple fish-wife gossip. I also don’t like talking about it because I don’t want to play a part in giving legs to the rumors.

    But I’ve decided if Rafa can speak out about it, so can I. Here’s the background. By now, about everyone knows that back in February Alberto Contador earned himself a 2-year ban from professional cycling and had his Tour de France title taken for testing positive for clenbuturol. Mr. Contador claimed that he consumed the PED (performance enhancing drug) by eating tainted meat. As arguments go, it’s at least feasible, as the drug has been known to be used by veterinarians on animals (and as we know, NO athlete has ever knowingly taken a PED)...but I digress.

    Apparently, French television played some Freudian free association with the Contador story. It goes a little something like this:


    1. A Spanish athlete was convicted by WADA of using PEDs and had his title stripped.

    2. The French Federation for the Defamation and Hatred of All Spanish Athletes but Mostly Rafael Nadal determined, after careful consideration, that the Contador case was a de facto conviction for every athlete living in Spain.

    3. Or at least the ones that win a lot.

    4. Since Nadal is guilty by association (and musculature) it is therefore acceptable and appropriate for a French television show to portray him (in puppet form, of course) urinating into a car’s gas tank in order to make it go faster, tagged with the by-line “Spanish athletes: they don’t win by chance”.

    And actually, while we’re talking about it, that by-line is, pardon my language, STUPID. What’s the point? That every athlete from every other country DOES win by chance? Like Serena Williams tripped into the All-England club and walked away with the trophy? That Roger Federer took time out from his busy yodeling schedule and just by happenstance became a 16-time Slam champion?

    Anyway, a month after the skit was aired on Canal+ in France, the topic has resurfaced. Why? Because Spain is fighting back. The Spanish tennis federation has issued a statement which indicates that they intend to sue Canal+.

    This interested me from the moment I heard about it, because as far as I’m aware, you can’t actually sue a puppet for slinging excrement. But after a little digging, what I discovered is that Spanish tennis is going to sue the network because they used the Spanish tennis federation’s logo without permission.

    This isn’t quite as compelling as a law suit which contains the phrase “the puppet’s going DOWN”, but I applaud the sentiment regardless. Also, you can sort of tell that's what they WOULD have said if they could have gotten away with it.

    Seriously, that “skit” is such a breach of basic common decency, I almost don’t know where to begin. It’s one thing to boo a teenager when he walks out on court. I mean, it’s despicable, don’t get me wrong...but that can come with being a famous athlete. It’s quite something else for the mass media of an entire country to conduct what amounts to a witch hunt and focus it on one guy whose biggest crime is that he wins a lot.

    I couldn’t be more thrilled that Spanish tennis is taking action, because it says very clearly that they stand behind Rafael Nadal and have nothing to hide. Rafa himself referred to the myriad of drug tests he’s taken. And if his English were just slightly better, he’d be saying, “BRING IT”.

    One thing is for sure....the French Open ought to be verrryyyy interesting this year.

Tell a friend »


Hmm.. This year's RG is definitely going to be a cracker. We can also hope Rafa to bail out on Paris Masters again.

abhirf , 3/31/12 9:19 PM

Such intelligent commentary abhirf. You must be a genius.

agfmilos , 3/31/12 10:12 PM

I apologize for my last post.

agfmilos , 3/31/12 10:18 PM

Sorry abhirf, I missed your reference. No offense!

agfmilos , 3/31/12 10:29 PM

The French are pathetic...the latest affair with that stupid puppet show made me so angry...I will say it again: French do not deserve to host a Grand Slam and they do not deserve a champion like dare they make fun of a guy who is extraordinary and exemplary in every sense...Rafa is a role model, he is an idol to youngsters and yet all French want is to see him lose at their beloved RG...I just know, no matter what they do, French will again be much less successful than Spain in the Olympics and they will die of envy...They can make false accusations, be stupid enough to mock one of the best athletes ever, it will bring them nowhere...And when I recall Gasquet having been accused of doping, there were no such statements from the French media...pathetic people and pathetic country...I hope Rafa wins again just to make those idiots be more miserable...

natashao , 3/31/12 11:08 PM

I actually agree with abhirf. Nadal is allowed to miss a Masters event without penalty every year. It's not by accident that he skips the Paris masters. I can't blame him at ALL.

cherylmurray , 4/1/12 1:36 AM

Agreed. As I tried to explain, I misunderstood.

agfmilos , 4/1/12 2:09 AM

Cheryl your bias for Nadal is coming out again. On another thread you said that I was throwing around cheap shots because of Nadal's PRP treatments which I really wasn't. However on this thread you let natashao get away with cheap shotting an entire country by calling every French person "poor jealous and incapable cowards". It's obvious that this behavior is fine with you since it's from a Nadal fan here on It seems to me that the French are doing something right as at least they aren't 'broke as a joke' like Spain is. It's your show so fine but at least the other posters can see the bias in favor of Nadal again. Cheers.

chr18 , 4/1/12 2:46 AM

Come on now, chr. Let's not be childish here. The nationalist comments were deleted just like your comments were deleted. Save your silly accusations.

cherylmurray , 4/1/12 3:18 AM

Ok now I see that you've deleted the last part of her post. That's a start. Truce.

chr18 , 4/1/12 3:45 AM

I didn't see it before. I replied to the first post on this article. I don't always read every comment all the way through immediately.

Just for the record, if somebody were making allegations against Federer or Nole or Muzza or anyone else, the same rules apply here on TT. This isn't a Nadal bias, it is that I feel we owe our athletes the benefit of the doubt.

cherylmurray , 4/1/12 4:11 AM

Cheryl, I don't think the same rules apply to Fed fans. They are treated with leniency.
This chr18 made two doping allegations against Rafa in one day. Earlier too he had made numerous such allegations but you had not given him a warning let alone ban him.
He also viciously attacks Rafa fans and if I recall correctly, he has alleged several times that Rafa is gay (I am not sure whether it was chr18 because most Fed fans are alike in their Rafa-hate personality but other Rafa fans can confirm or deny this. At any rate it is certain a Fed fan repeatedly claimed Rafa was gay and that Mark Lopez was his boyfriend).
Torres9 harassed me when I first joined this forum. Though I complained to you twice about his targeted persecution of me, you took no notice and he is still around. Recently he posted an obscene remark about Rafa fans but again you took no notice. But you rapped Jean on her wrist for making a relatively inoffensive remark compared to the remarks Fed fans repeatedly make.
So how can you justify your statement that you treat all fans the same?
May I know why this partiality to Fed fans?
If a Rafa fan had alleged even once that Fed is on HGH, you would have banned him. But repeated allegations by chr18 that Rafa is on HGH are treated lightly?

holdserve , 4/1/12 5:53 AM

I apologize to Cheryl for my outburst here and promise won't happen again...:) however, my opinion remains the same...the time will prove to the French that they were making a big mistake by harassing Rafa the way they continuously do...they will feel sorry and embarrassed sooner or later...whatever they say the history is already written and there is nothing they can do about it...

chr18, I did not realize you were actually reading my posts...that's a start...I am glad I managed to upset you at least a have been doing that to Rafa fans for ages with your cheap shots at Rafa and shameful comments about him...join the French puppet show, will you...there is a role for you in there I am sure...

VAMOS SPAIN!!! Gold medals are waiting for you!!!

natashao , 4/1/12 12:14 PM

If they were referring to Rafa's muscles as proof of doping then they should also look at a lot of other players, including certain French ones who are no slouches in the muscle department. By the way Rafa's left arm is much more developed than his right arm - are these drugs so clever that they can target any area of the body they want??

I think this whole thing was really disgusting and had no humour value at all. I too hope that Rafa wins his 7th French Open this year - it would be a phenominal achievement.

schatz , 4/1/12 1:02 PM

what did natashao say?

RickyDimon , 4/1/12 8:58 PM

I wouldn't call RG public French. It's international.

The other thing is the French and the Spanish have been enemies historically. There's no love lost between these two nations.

Looking on the other side of this matter, how many times did the French win RG over the last 50 years (since 1960)? Once. Noah in 1983. How many times did the Spanish do it? Manolo Santana (1961, 1964), Andres Gimeno (1978), Sergi Bruguiera (1993, 1994), Carlos Moya (1998), Albert Costa (2002), Juan Carlos Ferrero (2003), Rafa Nadal (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011) which makes it 14. The Spanish are sitting in the French backyard and doing whatever they want to, plucking feathers from the proud Gallic cock to be more specific. Nothing but envy can appear in this situation.

The French tennis officals like Guy Forge abused Rafa Nadal for years. Through combined effort of unscrupulous French press and tennis geniuses who either failed to win a slam or were a one-slam wonder, the public got assured that Rafa Nadal is a bad guy. Hence, all the anti-Rafa screaming.

Outside RG stadium I know a lot of French who cheer for Rafa and love him dearly. Even those who don't are very civil.

The same happens in cycling. I've never cared a cent for it, but I know the names of Indurain and Contador. No French names for me at all.

hen , 4/2/12 2:29 PM

Not to mention that there is a consistent body of evidence suggesting that the French have been speeding up the RG prizes for guessing with what purpose in mind.

rafaisthebest , 4/2/12 3:31 PM

Nats, all the French are not the same. Just as all Brits etc. I personally cannot stand Cameron/Clegg/Osbourne but someone must like'em cos they were voted in *rolls eyes.*
I personally find Parisians are quite different from people outside the capital.

deuce , 4/3/12 11:51 AM

deuce, I know you are right...I should know, if I have any common sense...but, you see, they broke my heart...they as a nation completely lost my respect...Rafa is primarily their champion...he worked so hard to be THE champ of RG...the ABSOLUTE champ...and what did they do to show appreciation? They make fun of him, they make false and unfounded accusations, they boo him at his favorite RG and most of all they disrespect him and insult him...Rafa says every time he steps on RG clay he feels nervous...he should be feeling proud instead, and loved, because that is what he deserves...I can not forgive the French...and that puppet show is not made by Parisians or RG's made in France...I did not see any French media issuing condemn for it or anyone going public to issue an apology...

natashao , 4/3/12 9:13 PM

natashao, I feel the same way. It's tragic the way they treat him but I believe hen is right that it is a France vs Spain issue. I do not find Parisians very friendly in general from my personal experience however but I haven't spent any time outside Paris. Spaniards I've found to be much friendlier. In general of course!

I home Rafa snubs Masters 1000 in Paris this year also. They do not deserve such a champion.

Conspirator , 4/3/12 9:47 PM

Their champion? What a riot! He's not close to being French so he could never be their champion. At least he could learn to speak French. Oh wait he's not smart enough to learn to speak proper English which is easier. Spends too much time childishly playing video games it seems.

chr18 , 4/3/12 11:06 PM

All Rafa has to do is continue to win at RG to frustrate those who continue to smear his good name. Ironically, if Tsonga, Monfils or Gasquet were vilified in Spain, Spaniards would defend them. When they win in Spain, Spaniards cheer for them. But Spanish players, conversely have already given up hopes of receiving the same treatment while in France.

C'est la vie!

grafight , 4/3/12 11:11 PM

A few points:
-Rafa is the champion of their Grand Slam. They should at least treat him accordingly.

-Rafa speaks a bit of French and he usually begins his many trophy ceremonies at RG in French.

-English is not easier than French for a Spanish Speaker.

-Rafa speaks more English than French because he spends more time in English-speaking venues than French-speaking ones.

-"Proper English" is actually extremely difficult for a Spanish speaker. Spanish is based in grammar and pronunciation rules. In English, every "rule" has multiple exceptions. In Spanish every vowel and consonant stands for one sound only. In English pronunciation changes with the word so the only way to learn is to memorize.

-Playing video games hasn't stopped Rafa from winning Grand Slams. He's not a U.N. interpreter, he's a Tennis player.

grafight , 4/3/12 11:25 PM

Not forgetting Rafa speaks Italian too. Now the one that really impress me is Nole, that guy can simply learn to speak any language easily. He speaks his native Serbian; speaks English well; speaks some German, some Italian, and he's learning French too!

luckystar , 4/4/12 3:30 AM

Chr18, soooo playing video games are childish and your comments aren't.

#inconsistent :)

Conspirator , 4/4/12 4:17 AM

chr - in the most literal sense, Nadal IS their champion (whether they want him or not). Don't believe me? Look at the list of winners for the past 7 years. You'll see that it says "champion" behind his name 6 times.

The fact that they refuse to embrace him is a commentary on them, not him.

cherylmurray , 4/4/12 2:11 PM

Well said cheryl and jean! chr18 is the worst sort of troll. He should go to yahoo or some other troll site.

Inspired by chr18's bile, I'll no longer be responding to troll hate bait and I suggest that all Rafans do the same! Don't validate it with a response. Ignore it and he'll eventually move on where people will rise to his bait. It's what he's looking for.

Peace to REAL tennis fans (Fed, Nole, Rafa, Muzz et. al)!!!

Conspirator , 4/4/12 5:07 PM

once in a while we have trolls writing here (and anywhere else) - they just look for effect, to get a rise our of others, and to get attention

you are not one of those

but you are repeatedly showing yourself as being another type of poster: one who part of the time writes normal posts with observations, opinions, replies etc.. all normal as most of us here try to write...

and then part of the time you just write patently, obviously distorted comments that virtually no-one would see as fact or simple opinion but rather as cheap, lazy and frankly stupid distortions of the truth just because of your feelings / emotions / projections towards Nadal...

coming from someone otherwise lucid and rational like yourself how do you think that makes you come across?

chlorostoma , 4/4/12 5:14 PM

I agree with you conspirator @ 4/4/12 5.07pm. Thanks Cheryl and Jean.

schatz , 4/4/12 6:09 PM

As someone who gets bored easily and who wants to barf after reading the sappy overly indulgent and obsessed comments from some Nadal fans. I have never been one to fawn over any player or let a player's losses or injuries affect me to the extent that some here do. I like tennis but it does not consume me. Anyway I'm bringing my wife and kids tomorrow morning to Roquebrune for the USA tie so you folks won't be hearing from me for a while. Cheers!

chr18 , 4/5/12 1:10 AM

Aah, promises, promises!

Hey, I'd rather be sappy, overly indulgent and obsessed than a hater! So now it's all our fault!

Also, the comment about not allowing a player's losses or injuries affecting you, is absolute and total nonsense! You let Fed's losses to Rafa get under you skin and then it comes out in abject hateful, spiteful drivel of the very worst kind.

You are the last person who should be criticizing or lecturing anyone. Take a good look in the mirror! Don't you know that anger eats you up from the inside out? Why should whatever Rafa fans say bother you in any way, shape or form? Oops, I forgot! We are not allowed to say nice things about Rafa or compliment him in any way.

I do care about his injuried and am proud to say it. I want to see him playing for a long time! Caring about him makes me happy and gives me joy, as does watching him play!

I would much rather spend my time being happy and saying good things about someone than spewing out venomous hatespeak.

Nativenewyorker , 4/5/12 2:31 AM

You are bright enough to know that:

All non-troll regular posters here, be they nole murray roger or rafa fans, are pretty intelligent, perceptive, street-wise and at least fairly well informed about tennis and tennis opinions...

in other words: your pretenses fool no-one.

In my humble opinion you have two choices:

1. leave this site

2. stay but write only non-troll posts

chlorostoma , 4/5/12 3:52 PM

All posts with personal insults to other posters deleted. Let's keep it directly about tennis please.

cherylmurray , 4/8/12 10:35 PM

Would just like to remind people that Roger's mother is/was South African and that her primary language was English. More than likely Roger grew up speaking more than one language. Nole was sent to a tennis academy in Germany as a boy (age 10 I think) where languages was part of the curriculum. Even other Spanish players had the advantage of learning English at their tennis academies. Rafa on the other hand, spent all of his time in Mallorca with no chance to learn English until much later. That's a huge advantage for both Roger and Nole in the language learning department. The younger you are, the easier it is to learn other languages.

Maya , 4/13/12 6:47 AM

Yes, Rafa speaks three languages/dialects fluently too, his native Malloqii, Spanish and Catalan. His English has also improved so much; he speaks some Italian too. He's learning French and according to him, he can understand French and speaks a little French too. Had he studied and learned English, French and Italian from young, I'm sure he'll be fluent with these three languages too. He's not doing badly now where languages is concerned, I'm proud of him.

luckystar , 4/13/12 7:47 AM

@chr18 , 4/5/12 1:10 AM

chr18, at least Rafans are consumed with something positive about their hero not about hatred for other players like you are consumed by hatred for Rafa. Perhaps it will do you good if your passion was channeled into whichever player you support. You see, I am not even sure who you support because all you do is express venom against the Great One - Rafael Nadal, the King of Clay.

nadline , 4/13/12 4:27 PM

nadline, don't validate the bait! :)

When is the MC draw?

Conspirator , 4/13/12 8:16 PM

Here's a little tidbit from Roland Garos. They've put a video together of the best 15 shots over the last twenty years at Roland Garos. You'd think Rafa being the winner of nearly 1/3 of those years would have at least 3 or 4 winning shots, but no, Rafa is is in the video just once losing a point to the Frenchman Mattieu. Do they actually think that the tennis public is dense enough not to notice the rebuke. This is mind numbing.

Maya , 4/14/12 4:56 AM


I heard that the draw for MC will be tomorrow at noon. I assume that means noon local time.

Nativenewyorker , 4/14/12 10:26 AM

@Maya , 4/14/12 4:56 AM


nadline , 4/14/12 6:17 PM

Well if Nole wants to take MC from Rafa, he has a potentially formidable path: Ferrer, Muzz and Rafa!

Conspirator , 4/14/12 6:31 PM

anyone knows when is the exho? cant find any info :S it would be great if some one could find a live streaming link

vamosrafa , 4/14/12 9:13 PM

I wonder how Nadal gets all of these easy draws? Must be a conspiracy huh Conspirator?

chr18 , 4/14/12 9:50 PM

WARNING!!! The above post has been identified as troll hate bait. Please do not feed the trolls!

(besides, ALL draws for Rafa on clay are easy because they are on CLAY. Only way it could be easier would be if Fed entered the draw but he knows better.)

Conspirator , 4/14/12 10:11 PM

I guess all the draws last year were easy too until he got to the finals of Madrid and Rome. Whoops. I guess it's ok for the Rafanatics to say Fed gets easy draws and schedules but they can't see that it cuts both ways for their fav as well. Clearly the organizers want Nadal in the final again is all. I guess it will take a few more majors before the Djoker gets this kind of treatment.

chr18 , 4/15/12 1:04 AM

WARNING!!! The above post has been identified as troll hate bait. Please do not feed the trolls!

(...although showing some real growth admitting that draws are not random - admitting you are wrong is a positive 1st step!)

Vamos Rafa!!!!!

Conspirator , 4/15/12 2:10 AM

Conspirator, a troll chart perhaps? 10 for a red alert- avoid at all costs, down to a 1- considering replying to...;)

deuce , 4/15/12 8:53 AM

vamosrafa, if you are referring to the one at Real Madrid's Bernabeu Stadium, it's in July. I don't think we'll know of a live stream until then. l-Nadal-Novak-Djokovic-set-Bernabeu-charity-challenge.html

nadline , 4/15/12 12:10 PM

No draw on clay is difficult for Rafa, can't say the same for Fed and Nole. Got to say no draw is difficult for Rafa at the slams, judging by the fact that he had reached four consecutive slam finals. Now Fed vs Nole at the slam SFs, the outcome of which is 50:50; interesting that until now Fed and Nole had not met on grass at Wimbledon.

Fed vs Murray on clay and grass, yet to be seen. Nole vs Murray on grass too. Rafa is the only one who has met Fed, Nole and Murray on all surfaces, including indoor hard courts.

luckystar , 4/15/12 1:13 PM

I wonder how Nadal gets all of these easy draws? Must be a conspiracy huh Conspirator?
chr18 , 4/14/12 9:50 PM

What easy draws? Isner in the first round?

nadline , 4/15/12 2:02 PM

Hmmm... If we start to count... Nole is linguistic champ...
He speaks fluently English and German ( not "some" German), speaks Italian very well... learning French...
Not to mention ( I think lucky mentioned dialects )... And his native Serbian... So there are Croatian, Bosnian, Montenegrian and he understand Macedonian.
They are similar languages but now those are regular languages of diferent countries :)
Fed is speaking native English and Swiss German... French is good but far away from perfect, he learned French in school, and as he admitted a lot of times, never liked it.
Anyway I would be happy to speak French as Fed.
Everyone, I mean everyone in Swiss speaks three languages... English... One native ( depend where he lives... French, German or Italian ) ... and one more of those three they learn in school.

zare , 4/18/12 5:35 PM

zare, following your logic I speak fluently six languages...:)

natashao , 4/18/12 6:05 PM

Well me too... :)
But... If we are talking about Spanish dialects here, I see no reason why not mention the languages of (as swiss ppl say) ex Yugo :)

zare , 4/18/12 11:59 PM

, 4/18/12 11:59 PM

I agree...:))

natashao , 4/19/12 12:14 AM

Maya @ 4.56am - it just goes to show the sort of people they are really.

schatz , 4/19/12 5:38 PM

i think the french have all the right to make inquiry's. this article is biased and looks to have been written at the base of the rafacamp. Let Johan have a go at the matter.

advan , 4/20/12 12:35 AM

I have never learned languages particularly quickly. Some lucky few do absorb them like sponges but for the rest of us it takes many hundreds of hours of exposure and using the language... something most adults don't have the time for unless they do it on the job e.g. in a new country.

By some of the above counts I spoke one language until age 5 when we moved to Belgium, but then learned to speak 3 fluently in school simply because we had instruction every day in two and the kids among themselves spoke a third one. THis is not including English. We didn't study English just picked up a lot of passive English by watching soaps and movies with Dutch subtitles and by listening to British and American pop and rock.

But by the calculations of some of you I have to count several dead languages we learned in school: aramaic, greek and latin and half of us learned some German. And a number of us spoke yet another language at home. No-one was necessarily a wiz at languages, just exposed to hundreds of hours of it. Later active English came in. I never had one hour of instruction in German but understand a lot due to Dutch. Learned a lot of Spanish by reading, listening to music, watching movies and conversations with friends.
But believe me, I learn languages slowly.
So if you want to be impressed with Fed speaking 3 languages, don't be. If you had as many thousands of hours of immersion in those 3 you would to. If you want to be impressed with Novak's speaking a number of similar languages plus a couple other ones, don't be. Any of us in his shoes would learn them all with all those hours. Some of us would be more fluent sooner, some a little later. THe only reason Nadal's English was really weak years ago is he had very few hours of immersion and practice in it until then. That means nothing in itself. If any of you had so few hours of immersion in a foreign language 90% of you would also speak it far from fluently. Now that he has many more hours of immersion he speaks it better.

If you want to be impressed then meet my cousin. Or some of the other people that pick up languages fast. He has learned a few languages growing up. THen around age 20 he got really keen and has been learning a language every few months, speaking fairly fluently then. It's been a couple of years. If he keeps this up who knows how many he will master.

Some of this might be doubtful unless you have lived in a country where children speak several languages growing up, which is the case for perhaps half of us posting here. In that case you know what I''m talking about from your own experience. A thousand hours of immersion, and anyone is pretty fluent. Only two hundred hours of immersion and only the sponge type of people can be fluent. Oh, and the desire of motivation or love for learning a language it the factor. Necessity or great love of it speed things up.

chlorostoma , 4/20/12 3:16 AM

I've written about this before: while you can't say anything like "all French people" or "all Parisians" ... you CAN say quite a few French people and especially quite a few Parisians have attitudes towards others that are, well, ...
and the way the authorities and the public at RG have treated Rafa since 2005 when he first played there and first one there... is despicable. Because a) he is Spanish and won the cup French players have not won in a very long time and very rarely and b) because he defeated Roger there that year and prevented him from getting a career slam in 2005 when Roger was getting a lot stronger on clay... or perhaps b) was the initial reason for the vile treatment and a) the second. Of course since Nadal kept on doing those two things in subsequent years did not endear him more to those organizers, commentators, journalists and crowd members who felt justified to treat him extremely unfairly. If the roles were reversed and Fed (once already popular in the world at large) would have received the same treatment in Paris, and then again each subsequent years later... I expect many fans would be horrified, many tennis writers would write about this etc.
I've travelled to Paris and other parts of France many times and have met many very nice people. But I have also met and observed those for whom this kind of behaviour feels normal and justified.

chlorostoma , 4/20/12 3:36 AM

pff but the do have a point!

Those french know what they are talking about. They know when something is good or bad. They know when something is right or wrong. They know when there is cheating or fairplay. They have a real good feel for all of those things. I would back the french with everything they say or do. And whawhawja what was that great fun.

advan , 4/20/12 11:22 PM

^^^^ whawhawja

most intelligent thing you say all week Well done for dumbfan

hawkeye , 4/21/12 12:08 AM

I do hope Johan L is gonna make a follow up on this blog. we really are lookong forward to the point of view from the french.

advan , 4/21/12 12:31 AM

Well advan... I wish I have your brain for a few days... to relax and have a rest.
Johan??? Johan... queen of copy paste... so called journalist???
You really deserve each other ROFL!!!

zare , 4/21/12 10:13 AM

yes Zare but it is the best next thing we could ask for on this site. Ihave been readinf up on cheryl blogs and well lets face it she is almost a Rafa cheerleader.

advan , 4/21/12 11:39 AM

Johan is sad story... Just a shadow of journalist...

zare , 4/21/12 4:13 PM

but you have to agree better a sad story then Raga's fangirl.

advan , 4/21/12 5:45 PM

You know, every time I write a positive article about a player, I become his fangirl. I've been accused of being a "Federer Idiot", a Rafa fangirl, Andy Murray's mother, and a no-talent English actress.

Bring it on, advan. :D Do please accuse me of liking Andy Roddick too much. That's one I haven't heard before.

cherylmurray , 4/21/12 5:57 PM

Mandy's mother as in Judy? Now that's a funny one Cheryl. I bet you're too young for that. Incidentally I wouldn't say this is a positive article about Nadal rather a negative one about the French.

chr18 , 4/21/12 6:36 PM

well at first I really did think could it be his mam or sister?
anyhoe he did come throufh to face djoker in the final so you might as well rub it in.

please tell that atleast you have some scottish roots?

advan , 4/21/12 7:12 PM

Fadvan if you find root you know what to do. Same as stick you worry about trust me.

hawkeye , 4/21/12 7:31 PM

chr - yes, as in Judy. Except they thought Andy's mother was called "cheryl".

Also, there is some older actress called Cheryl Murray from the UK. THey thought I was her too...which is rather funny, really.

cherylmurray , 4/22/12 2:16 AM

, 4/18/12 11:59 PM

I somebody doesn't know the difference between a language and a dialect, maybe he/she shouldn't speak about it. Djokovic's French is non-existent: he said one sentence in French in Monto Carlo, and there were 3-4 grammar mistakes there. His Germqan is very limited to the most common wordstock and tennis terminology which is mostly English. His Italian is a ceremonial speech learnt by heart. He can't say anything outside it. BTW, why don't you, Serbs, ask him why he doesn't pay a cent of taxes to Serbia, if he loves it so much?

hen , 4/26/12 3:25 PM

did we already have a meaningfull discussion about the truth?

Shouldnt we acknowledge the fact that the french media and the former atletes know what is going on in Spain. They know and they should be praised for addressing it.

advan , 4/27/12 12:46 AM

Hey Cheryl, advan is talking about doping. Did you not say posters aren't allowed to allege doping against players? Or is it a rule never applied when dealing with Fed fans making doping allegations?

holdserve , 4/27/12 3:32 PM

hehe holdserve you lost it completely. My comment is about what the blog is trying to oppose. so if cheryl is allowed to speak her mind. why would I not be allowed.

advan , 4/28/12 12:22 AM

cheryl, are you turning a blind eye again to advan's accusations? She has the gall to suggest that it is the truth and she has the right to speak it. Since there are no positive tests, this accusation is based on her opinion. So a Fed fan can boldly state an opinion as the truth and Cheryl will accept it.
Is this site funded by Federer's sponsors?
Anyway, no point in protesting against such blatant bias.
Cheryl as moderator is totally anti-Rafa though in her writing she endeavors to be fair.

holdserve , 4/28/12 5:43 AM

You know it seems sometimes that Cheryl can't win here! She's either getting it from the Fed fans about this site being biased in favor of Rafa or now getting it from a Rafa fan about the bias being in favor of Fed!

Anyone who has read Cheryl's blogs knows just how much she appreciates Fed's game. She has written some beautiful words about Fed. I also have read equally fulsome praise from her about Rafa.

I think she likes them both and always tries to be fair to everyone on this site. It's not an easy job. She deserves credit for doing it well.

Nativenewyorker , 4/28/12 7:56 AM

I will try to explaine it to holdserve, he is to dumb to figure this one out on his own.
whenever Cheryl herself is writing a blog be it about interaction between spaniah atletes/rafa and french tv. or about a very hounest opinion from a former player noah in this blog she gibes her opinion about it. why are posters notallowed to do the same as she does.. I happen to like the french and i think they absolutely 100% correvt with everhthing they have said about these issues like doping gamesmanship etc also Noah gets kudos for finally speaking out. If Cheryl didnot like my reply she should delete first her own blog. why would she do that?

Now you on the otherhand is raising up feds name every chance you see towards doping. Fedvhas never be named in any tv show or former player etc so there is only speculation from your side. The spasnosh playersa been speculated everyday somewhere in the world. and i happen to agree with those speculations but I am not fan of bringing it up to TT only f if I see wrong or slightly biased info from Cheryl. that of course is her right bit so have I.

advan , 4/28/12 9:50 AM

nny, see my point? cheryl is nowhere to be seen when a Fed fan like chr18 or advan raises doping allegations but she is quick to give warning if Fed's name is mentioned.
I rest my case.
No point in belaboring the obvious.

holdserve , 4/28/12 2:38 PM

Indeed, no point in belaboring the obvious. At 30 something, Fed should have been long retired if not for...

phoenix , 4/28/12 2:42 PM

Where are you hawkeye? There is business to be taken care of here :)

schatz , 4/28/12 5:57 PM

And where's cheryl? Why is she not warning advan?

holdserve , 4/29/12 1:36 AM

where the french tv is basing their views on facts. Contador is the first of the spanish atletes to fall. Cheryls view is solely based on her opinion. she doesnot use any e idence or facts to underline her point of view. So I am free to look for all views of the french tv that agrees with my point about the spanish atletes. It is agiven that contador cheated.

advan , 4/29/12 11:24 AM

well, must say it again: French are just pathetically jealous of Spanish being better than them...they will use all sorts of means to put down the Spanish athletes, but, as we all know, it only makes them look worse...poor French delusional "..." by making fun of Spanish athletes they are only showing their own weaknesses proving to the rest of the world that their attitude towards Spain is not worth attention...

true, the economic crisis has hit the Spain as well, but there is no reason for anyone here to enjoy will not pass France as well, nobody is immune to inevitable economic impacts...their current elections are laughable to say at least, so I wonder why don't they make a puppet show of their "unusual" president (I am trying not to use "forbidden" words as Cheryl may decide to delete my post!) who will most likely be history soon...poor French, they have much more issues to worry about than Spain...they should just let those Spanish sport geniuses be...

And nothing is given...if thinking the way advan does, poor Gasquet is nothing but a French cheater..

natashao , 4/29/12 12:03 PM

why let fact and evidence, or in this case a 100% lack of it stand in the way of a good story, or of wishful thinking?

Besides, a French television channel broadcast a puppet satire so what more prove do you need?

chlorostoma , 4/29/12 2:11 PM

And the same old story...poor, who sends French football team packing? Who proved again and again to be better than French? Dominant Spanish team, of course...Spain beats France 2:0 at the European Championship and reaching semis once again!


natashao , 6/23/12 10:43 PM

chr18 , 10/19/12 1:44 PM

@chr18, 10/19/12 1:44 PM
__"Look what happened in cycling with Lance Armstrong. It took ... 10 years to find something that everyone already knew long ago," he said__

I have always wondered how it is possible that a person who couldn't serve in the (Swiss) army due to his long-standing back problem, can continiously play tennis.

Augustina08 , 10/19/12 2:49 PM

chr18 is just bored and trolling for a response. Don't give him the satisfaction.


Conspirator , 10/19/12 2:56 PM

It's an article worth discussing.

chr18 , 10/19/12 6:28 PM

@chr18, 10/19/12 1:44 PM
@chr18, 10/19/12 6:28 PM
__No doubt, matches are more physically grueling than ever. /---/Andy Murray needed a record-tying 4 hours and 54 minutes to defeat Novak Djokovic...__

And on 3 August 2012, R.Federer and JM. del Potro played the longest match in Olympic tennis history, it lasted 4 hours and 26 minutes. I keep wondering (see my comment 10/19/12 2:49 PM).

Augustina08 , 10/19/12 7:06 PM

Nice try Conspirator.

chr18 , 10/19/12 7:46 PM

Nice try chr18.

rafaisthebest , 10/19/12 8:25 PM

Besides here is a better article worth discussing, no?

Here is the link...

For anyone not familiar with web page links, I've posted the article in its entirety:

Andy Murray dazzles and bewilders Roger Federer at Shanghai Masters

Andy Murray still has a long way to go to achieve his goal of becoming the world No1 but there was more evidence that it may be only a matter of time. His 6?4, 6?4 victory over the top dog, Roger Federer, took him to the verge of winning the Shanghai Masters for the third straight year, and if anything it was more dominant than the scoreline suggests. Such is the Scot's confidence, it seems like he is improving almost by the week.

Having shrugged off a cold on his way to the semi-finals, the world No3 outgunned Federer with a hugely powerful performance, much as he did when beating the Swiss to win Olympic gold in August. The inner calm earned by winning his first grand slam title at last month's US Open is visible in all elements of his game and Federer, probably the greatest player of all time, was a distinct and distant second best.

These are heady days for British tennis. Three weeks after Laura Robson became the first British woman to reach a WTA Tour final since 1990, Heather Watson matched her effort by reaching the final in Osaka. The 20-year-old was due to take on Chang Kai-cheng of Taiwan in the early hours of Sunday morning, trying to become the first British woman to win a singles title since Sara Gomer in 1988.

In final in Shanghai, Murray faces Novak Djokovic, the man he beat in New York. The Serb is in pole position to end the year as No1 and only an injury to the Serb or something spectacular from Federer is likely to deny him his goal.

On Saturday, everything that was spectacular came from Murray as he outplayed Federer with a brand of tennis he is now beginning to produce on a regular basis.

In the first game, the 25-year-old hit three thunderous groundstrokes to break serve, setting the tone for a match in which Federer was on the back foot throughout. He has always maintained that the match is "on his racket" against Murray, that he is the one dictating. Things have changed. At the Olympics, Murray produced a serving masterclass to deny him; on Saturday, it was a series of brilliant returns and groundstrokes that left the maestro reeling.

"I went for it like I did the last few times I played against him," Murray said. "He didn't serve that well so I was able to be very aggressive on his second serve. He maybe slowed down his first serve a little bit, so I was able to take a few more chances on the first serve. Obviously that helped."

Murray leads their meetings 10-8 and there is clearly something about him that gets under Federer's skin. When Federer wanted to go off in the first game of the second set due to a few spots of rain on the court, Murray looked bemused. Both men knew Federer was struggling for answers.

Murray had won the first set with the purest of hitting, helped by poor serving from Federer, who, having got the early break back, coughed up three straight double faults to drop serve for a second time in the fifth game. Murray saw out the set with relative ease.

That first game of the second set saw Murray push for the kill, but Federer saved seven break points to hold. It might have been a turning point, but from 2?2 and with Federer 40?0 up on serve, Murray reeled off a string of brilliant returns to get the vital break. At 5?4, the players had to wait almost 20 minutes while the roof was closed because of heavier drops of rain, but a nerveless Murray closed out the match.

Watson's run in Osaka is a timely reminder that there is not just one British woman on her way to becoming a top player. Robson has been tipped as a star ever since she won junior Wimbledon in 2008, while Watson has lived in her shadow despite being 18 months older and having broken into the world's top 100 first.

Victory in Osaka would take Watson above Robson in the rankings once more, both of them around the No50 mark. Watson is a superb athlete and hugely consistent; Robson has immense power and great timing. Both are on the up.

Conspirator , 10/19/12 8:40 PM

@Conspirator, 10/19/12 8:40 PM
___Murray leads their [Murray - Fed) meetings 10-8 and there is clearly something about him that gets under Federer's skin___

Andy Murray is the second man who gets under Federer's skin. The first man is Rafa.
Vamos Rafa!

Augustina08 , 10/19/12 8:53 PM

Let's not leave out Nole!!!


Conspirator , 10/19/12 9:07 PM

Turns out this IS worth discussing after all!!!


Conspirator , 10/19/12 9:09 PM

@Conspirator, 10/19/12 9:09 PM
But, the discussion goes off-topic.

Augustina08 , 10/19/12 9:25 PM

Yes, chr18 does tend to wander sometimes, no?


Conspirator , 10/19/12 10:11 PM

So are you saying the author of this USA Today article is a troll? This thread is about PEDs so your article is not relevant. The one I posted is.

chr18 , 10/20/12 12:57 AM

^^^ ????

Just because the author of the article refers to Fed's gamesmanship does not make the author a troll.


Conspirator , 10/20/12 4:11 AM

Nice try chr18.

The troll is YOU!

jean , 10/20/12 4:17 AM

The article about doping in tennis refers to nothing of the sort. I was referring to your 2:56 post regarding trolling. Then at 7:46 I was referring to your obvious spam attempts on other blog threads so nobody would see the article I posted. The article is what it is and can't be swept under the rug.

chr18 , 10/20/12 4:30 AM

Oh I understand now. You're talking about the article referring to Federer's gamesmanship when he stopped the match from a few drops of rain. That's what I thought but i still don't understand how that would make the writer a troll.

Honestly chr18 if I didn't know any better, I'd begin to think that you were the troll but how could that be?


Conspirator , 10/20/12 5:16 AM

Dear chr18,

I suggest you read the article below from SI Tennis, ESPECIALLY THE CHOICE QUOTE BELOW. Surely you will agree with the sentiments expressed in the quote, since you are a man of ethics, no?

C hoice quote:

"5. The danger of speculation: It?s impossible to ignore the fact that tennis has been elevated to, at times, a seemingly super-human level. The men, at all levels, are playing a grueling style that leaves fans chugging Gatorade just to keep up. Meanwhile, the women?s game has seen a spike in power and its own share of three-plus-hour marathon matches. After this Armstrong ordeal, it?s tempting for fans and pundits to batten down the hatches and openly speculate as to which players may or may not be doping. No one wants to be fooled again and everyone wants to be the first one to be right.

But if we?re going to operate under the rubric that doping is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, if not the deadly sin in sports, then we have to recognize that throwing around names of suspected dopers with nothing more than an ill-timed muscly action shot as evidence is simply irresponsible. Nothing is gained from watching a sport with that level of unfounded cynicism and the rampant speculation ? attaching baseless innuendo to faces ? is far more harmful than helpful. "


rafaisthebest , 10/20/12 7:35 AM

What makes sme laugh is the way tennis writers come out with ' Federer, PROBABLY the greatest player of all time,' pronouncements whilst ennunciating his inability to regularly overcome both Rafa and Muzz. They use words like 'probably' and 'arguably' when they are not sure that he is the GOAT especially when he has just suffered a beat down. They then lose all inhibitions and state categorically that 'Federer is the greatest player of all time' if he manages to have a rare victory over the 2 who regularly beat him, or he wins a title.

I know Conspirator buys the Federer is GOAT thing , but I am far from being convinced, when my boy totally dominates on one surface not even allowing the GOAT a look in.

nadline , 10/20/12 12:15 PM

Thanks for the link ritb. The bits that caught my eye are:

1. 'Tennis has stayed relatively off the radar on the issue as a sport that relies on intelligence and hand-eye coordination more than pure strength, but the game is evolving into a much more physical task.'

I have always maintained that PEDs have limited use in tennis. Even if you can run around for ever, it doesn't help your shots.

2. 'The report also discusses the use of hypoxic chambers to help cyclists fool EPO tests. These are the same hyperbaric chambers that have been used by numerous tennis players, from Novak Djokovic to American Christina McHale. None of this alone means anything, and drawing conclusive links is both dangerous and irresponsible. But they don?t mean nothing either.'

nadline , 10/20/12 12:31 PM

There are good arguments for Rafa as GOAT and I completely respect that opinion nadline. I do not wish to 'convince' you or anyone else otherwise. GOAT can only be an opinion (same for best matches of the year) and my opinion is different than yours on this issue.

The last thing I would do is to readily dismiss your opinion by simply saying ^^^#no which for me would be somewhat disrespectful.

I'm hoping that future events will change my opinion of GOAT.


hawkeye , 10/20/12 4:12 PM



Conspirator , 10/20/12 4:14 PM

hawkeye, I wasn't making a case for Rafa to be the GOAT, I am just not convinced that Federer is the GOAT when he hardly has a showing on clay. No one can be call the GOAT, IMHO.

nadline , 10/20/12 4:40 PM

Lol Conspirator/hawkeye pulled a carrie/nadline again. At least nadline has ceased to use the name carrie unlike Conspirator who flips back and forth whenever convenient. You're obviously not fooling anybody.

chr18 , 10/20/12 5:07 PM


Conspirator , 10/20/12 5:14 PM

chr18, have you got nothing constructive to add to the 'debate' you wanted? Tut, tut.

nadline , 10/20/12 6:49 PM

Oh I already believe that there are many players getting away with it. I put the article up for others to read and try to understand my way of thinking. Many here live in a dream world of denial, a fantasy land if you will, and this article lends credence to my suspicions.

chr18 , 10/20/12 7:05 PM

chr18 as usual just trying to stir up some shite.

Trying to get everyone to forget the desperate gamesmanship employed by his hero last weekend.

He's probably a Lance Armstrong fan as well.


Conspirator , 10/20/12 7:28 PM

chr18 has a point actually...

PED are very common in the world of sports, and tennis is no different. I'm actually not sure why people would be surprised to hear of athletes still using them seeing as though competition today, is much fiercer than it was decades ago. Of course the problem is that in sports, such as tennis, fans idolize and hold their athletes to high regard (often to the point of being delusional).

That athletes from Spain or USA or China for that matter use PED should not be the least bit surprising, but again what do you care? Does it not make for an exciting match to see these athletes perform at a high level, with or without drugs?

I REALLY doubt that any of the top 10 have used PED's... But in this day and age, it wouldn't exactly come as a surprise to me if you know, Rafa, Nole, Murray, or Fed have.

aegis , 10/20/12 10:27 PM

Me neither. My problem with this particular story was singling out Spain in general. I have no problem with the article chr18-10 posted but instead where said troll decided to post it.


Conspirator , 10/20/12 11:14 PM

Where should I have posted it then? This is the only thread along with the earlier one that talks about PEDs after Noah brought it up. It's not talked about much here for legal reasons we were told.

chr18 , 10/21/12 12:11 AM

You really want me to tell you where you should post it chr18-10?


Conspirator , 10/21/12 3:47 AM

@chr18, 10/19/12 1:44 PM
__"Look what happened in cycling with Lance Armstrong. It took ... 10 years to find something that everyone already knew long ago," he said__

All roads lead to Switzerland.
##Armstrong paid Swiss firm for doping services, report charges. October 12, 2012.
American cycling champion Lance Armstrong paid more than a million dollars to a Swiss company controlled by an Italian doctor [Michele Ferrari] who helped cyclists benefit from illegal doping, a new report says.## m-for-doping-services-report-charges/ w/armstrong-paid-swiss-company-for-dope-report

Augustina08 , 10/21/12 10:01 AM

Thank you, Augustina.

So the Swiss are well and truly implicated the the Armstrong doping saga. chr18-10, take the speck out of your own eyes first so you can see clearly if there is a speck in someone else's eyes.

nadline , 10/21/12 10:12 AM

Like I said before, Switzerland is well known for it's pharmaceutical industry, so I'm not surprised a Swiss company is involved in the Armstrong case. Regardless of which country you're from, as long as you're rich, you're able to pay for all these drugs, through legal or illegal means. It all depends on the sportsman himself, whether he's ethical or not. They all should be given the benefit of doubts, until they're proven guilty.

luckystar , 10/21/12 10:45 AM


I agree with lucky's last statement! Absolutely! This is an incredibly serious allegation. Everyone knows that it's extremely hard to defend against a negative comment. There should be no accusation, hints or innuendoes with out some specific, substantive, credible proof. Without that, all deserve the benefit of the doubt!

Nativenewyorker , 10/21/12 10:52 AM

chr18=10, you wanted a discussion, but now you've gone quiet as the subject is moving closer to home. Be careful of what you wish for.

nadline , 10/21/12 1:23 PM

Actually it's quite far from my home. So what if Lance got his supplies there?

chr18 , 10/21/12 2:35 PM

^^^chr18-10, stop playing dumb.

nadline , 10/21/12 2:40 PM

Tennis must learn from cycling and golf what happens when you put a particular individual on a this GOAT nonsense.

Lance Armstrong was put on a pedestal by cycling higher-ups;
Tiger Woods was placed on a pedestal by golfing higher-ups;

We know what happened to those 2................

rafaisthebest , 10/21/12 9:36 PM

We can just imagine what chr18 would be saying if Lance Armstrong got his supplies in Spain!

Nativenewyorker , 10/21/12 11:00 PM

Spanish Court has ordered to destroy the blood bags now evidence is being destroyed to cover up the!!

They have such a developed network of doping doctors,physios,athletes, Govt. officials and even judiciary....f*ck

So much for the sudden rise of espanol in sports!!

Biggest joke doping was LEGAL till 2006 in spain ...ridiculous! Though unofficially it is still legal.

KMA , 5/1/13 6:46 AM


Trolling for flame wars! What a waste!

Nativenewyorker , 5/1/13 9:00 AM


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