Davis Cup: They’re Alive! Argentina’s Alive!

Until tomorrow, when they won’t be.  Still, the final will go into a live Sunday, with the reverse singles matches.  The ad-hoc team of Nalby and Schwank thoroughly defeated Fer and Feli in straight sets, 6-4 6-2 6-3.

Fun fact: In the Nalby-Schwank pairing, it’s Edu Schwank who’s known as “El Gordo.”

Photo: Javier Sorano (AFP Photo)

There was a hilarious mid-match moment when Nalby was shown repeatedly poking Edu Schwank in the chest–after they had gone two breaks up.  This is the intensity that is so known and feared.  Bless them both for winning this rubber.

Photo: Cristina Quicler (AFP Photo)

The photo above illustrates the dynamics of the Nalby-Schwank pairing.  Nalby lectures while Schwank bears the scrutiny with dignity.  With amazing tennis to boot.

DelPo was present on the Argy bench and he looked relaxed and peaceful enough to crack a smile after his brutal loss yesterday.  With DelPo and Pico cheering for their countrymen, as Rafa and Ferru cheered for theirs (Rafa is a cute nail-biting cheerleader), it made for an altogether exciting match:

Photo: Cristina Quicler (AFP Photo)

Chela pulls out all the stops for his celebration on the Argy bench.  Also, from a rear view, it would appear “El Gordo” might actually be…Nalby.  But I don’t want to spoil the moment.  Argentina are ALIVE, still.  ALIVE, for now.  But ALIVE.

Photo: Cristina Quicler (AFP Photo)

This is the roaring face I want to see from Nalby at Davis Cup.  Not the vision of him crying at yesterday’s opening ceremony.

Captain Tito choked up after the match.  He said, “The difference between triumph and disaster is one match.  And that’s very tough.”  The frazzled man deserves a vacation after this weekend.  I think he’s done a great job uniting a team that was capable of dissolving on its own, while making the best of its comparatively limited options here.

DelPo the man is recovering from his match yesterday and will be playing the 4th, and likely last rubber against Rafa on Sunday.  May he remember that his amigo/enemigo Bobby Sod once beat Rafa on clay too.

That said, I’m almost for replacing him with Nalby, only because I know the 4th rubber is going to clinch it for Spain.  Let the crazy, oft-ill tempered and territorial, but ingenious and passionate man known as Nalby enjoy his day in the sun.  Even if it is sadly, a fruitless one.

Tweets from the sidelines:

Miguel Seabra speaks for a long-suffering crowd of tennis fans, in his admiration of Nalby.

Sometimes, it’s easy to forget that even the winning team have feelings–Feli was upset about his doubles performance, which goes to show that even a well-oiled machine like Spain takes nothing for granted.

Photo: Javier Sorano (AFP Photo)


About mariposaxprs

I play favorites with Juan Martin Del Potro, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, David Ferrer, Feliciano Lopez, Gilles Simon and the long line of mercurial talent that drives me to despair in front of the screen at odd hours during the week.
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9 Responses to Davis Cup: They’re Alive! Argentina’s Alive!

  1. ariennalee says:

    ““The difference between triumph and disaster is one match. And that’s very tough.” The frazzled man deserves a vacation after this weekend. I think he’s done a great job uniting a team that was capable of dissolving on its own, while making the best of its comparatively limited options here.”
    I hope this team doesn’t get crucified, because they did a great job overall. An away game, 2 top five players on their best surface… and it was a lot closer than it looked.

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Yea, that’s a tough way to end the season for DelPo and the Argies. Good on Ferru though for pulling off the crucial win. And for Rafa, for ending his season on a high note–given his disappointment in the fall, he’d probably be holding a wake for his dying passion if he hadn’t pulled this off. Yes, I sound bitter. But seriously, great win for the Armada! Now may they all ditch the DC and go to the London Olympics next year–unless, as I suspect, they somehow end up doing both. It never ends, less than a month until 2012! 😉

  2. I take it you don’t give either Del Po or Nalby much of a chance tomorrow.

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Ah..that’s a tough one. I think DelPo could beat Rafa, but he would need to be playing at a great level. He played very well against Ferru, but had a few too many errors. If he upped his level from yesterday, then I could see a DelPo-Rafa match going 4-5 sets.

      But if I take into account the history, Rafa’s DC & clay record, and DelPo possibly being exhausted, it seems like a foregone conclusion. Not that I won’t get my hopes up all the same! As for Nalby…I’m not sure. The Nalby of 3-4 yrs ago might have stood a chance, but it’s not the same for him now. This could be his last chance though to pull of a truly history-making moment for Argentina, so he could do it at Davis Cup. He has a (slim) chance too!

      • ariennalee says:

        I know I’m going against the odds here (and maybe against good sense) but I’d pick Nalby tomorrow. His confidence is high after today’s win and he didn’t have to expend too much energy. DelPo, on the other hand, has to be hurting from his five fun hours with Ferru, and his confidence probably isn’t recovered either. Yep, I’m sure I’d pick Nalby. Unless I’d pick DelPo. I’m really glad I’m not a coach–I’m going to have trouble enough picking my rooting interest tomorrow!
        (Well, that’s not true, exactly. I know who I’ll be rooting for, but I already feel guilty about it!)
        Still, I’m for giving David Nalbandian his shot at the history books. I think. 😉

        • I’m with you arienna. I know who I support, and I definitely feel very guilty!

        • mariposaxprs says:

          That’s true, Nalby’s more well-rested and he does step it up in a big way at Davis Cup. Also, thinking ahead, I think if Nalby’s tempted to go on a “blame-everyone-else-for-losing” spree like he did in 2008, it’s better that the responsibility of the 4th rubber sits on his shoulders. At least that way, if he loses, he won’t have much ammunition for attacking his own teammates.

          The coach looks so disheveled and I’m really curious how the decision will go. It should be an interesting final day!

      • ariennalee says:

        Yes, just like you said it, let the lion have “his day in the sun!”

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