While surfing television channels, I bumped into live telecast of Australian Open second round match between World no 6 Alexander Zverev and unseeded Maxime Cressy, a French American player. The unseed was hard serving and backing up his express service ( often crossing 200 Km/ hour) with volley at the net. Of course, while Cressy was erratic, Zverev was steady and he won the match three sets to nil.
It reminded me of the days gone by when I was a sports aficionado and would cuddle up in bed to watch live telecast of Wimbledon semis and finals. With players like Borg and Lendl playing from baseline and McEnroe and Connors playing serve and volley game, the event was a feast for the eyes. I would remember names of up to 16 male seeds and at least top 10 female seeds and would keenly follow their progress.
Also, while Wimbledon was played on fast grassy courts, French open was played on clay courts that were slower and encouraged long baseline rallies.
Like other games, Tennis has also changed. The delectable game of Borg and McEnroe has given way to power show by likes of Cressy. Serve and volley is also becoming rarer. Above all, I am not really sure how closely is today’s generation following with all its nuances and icons?
Connors, McEnroe, Borg, Lendl, Navratilova, Evert, Graf and our very own Amritraj brothers and Ramesh Krishnan are firmly entrenched in my memory. Hopefully, I will create more awareness in myself for the new generation of players playing new brand of tennis .