This year, having endured a week and a day of metro track work extending my commute by half an hour in the morning and much more in the evenings, on hearing it was still going on this Monday decided I would take the afternoon off and go with my sister to the Citi Open, to at least escape half the ordeal. When we agreed on this, there were storms predicted for today, with some chance they would hit yesterday instead. But if one wants to go on a certain day, one will always subject oneself to the weather of that day.
My sister and I went to the Citi Open Wednesday, getting our tickets just after Andy Murray was confirmed as playing his first match on that day. The tournament is pretty familiar stomping ground for us now, but this year the appearance of one of the Big Four brought about huge crowds beyond what the tournament usually sees on a weekday. Although Murray was hardly the big name in the field, although he was the biggest; DC was also a stop on Lleyton Hewitt’s farewell tour, and while Viktoria Azarenka had to pull out, Samantha Stosur is currently having quite a run in the women’s field.
Went to watch the second and final round of qualifying for the Citi Open Sunday, bringing an umbrella because I expected rain, only to use it against the sun and still get horribly sunburnt. At least it mean the tennis was uninterrupted, although there was a very light brief drizzle around 11. There were six men’s matches and four women’s matches played that day(there was also a doubles match scheduled, but it ended up being a walkover), in the main stadium and two grandstand courts, and the tennis lasted about seven hours.
Went with my sister yesterday, getting there to claim tickets that were supposed to be sent to her job but got lost in the mail, and at some point turned out actually be tickets for day 2, but since they were tickets provided by the event sponsor, the people at the box office were very nice to us and exchanged them for that day. The storms didn’t arrive until after we left around 4, so the only problem we had to deal with was sunburn, and when it could’ve been much hotter than it was.
Storms are always pending in DC these days. Literally as well as figuratively; it seems the weather app is always saying they’ll happen later in the day, and often they don’t. This week they actually weren’t predicted for the evenings, but now isolated storms are predicted for tomorrow afternoon. When, naturally, my sister has a pair of tickets to the Citi Open first day of qualifying thanks to her job(the thing about free things is you don’t control the details). Tennis season is upon us again; this evening I had it on TV, yet another American boy winning largely because his opponent isn’t too tough a one.
Tonight it made me think back to 2009, when I was only just getting into the sport, and I watched an Indianapolis match between John Isner and Wayne Odesnik, the first I heard of either of them; it seems strange now to think it was less than a year before the former’s claim to fame and the latter’s claim to infamy. At the time I initially liked Odesnik better, simply because he looked handsomer, though their play annoyed me until by the time the second set was winding down I was hoping for Isner to win so he would quicker(naturally Odesnik took the set, than Isner won in the third)
Now suddenly on the heels of one suspension comes allegations of another, both of them shorter and less straightforward than the standard two years for an obvious attempt to cheat, but still it shakes you, especially with a Florida druggist allegedly with at least one tennis player on his books likewise in the news, even though one player could, it seems, just be Odesnik, whom we all know about already. Then there’s nothing for it but to wait to see if anyone, Troicki, Cilic, or others, say anything more than they already have, or someone else gets caught. There are storms no app predicts.
Order of play for the Citi Open isn’t out yet either. It’s always a waiting game of some sort.