Estoril: Bem-vindo ao Estoril

Everyone’s favorite clay-court tournament is quickly approaching.  It’s Estoril time!  Humble Estoril, which is located right near Lisbon, is a scenic tourny that boasts a strong list of past champions, given its 250-status (Fun fact: 5 of the champions in the past 10 years have been from Argentina (Nalby ’02, Chela ’04, Gaudio ’05, Nalby ’06, DelPo ’11 — in 2004, Estoril champ Chela teamed up with Gaudio to win the Estoril dubs title as well, to make it an all-round Argie sweep).  I should probably mention that Novak won Estoril in ’07 — but Federer won in ’08.  Overall, Estoril is a great tournament.

DelPo, defending champ: A beauteous image, right there!

Main draw play starts today.  DelPo, Gasquet, Wawrinka and Ramos are the top 4 seeds.  The Estoril draw can be found here.

The ATP treated us to a photo of the top 2 seeds, DelPo and Gasquet, taking a scenic bike ride near Estoril.  They were joined by Portugal’s Frederico Gil, and WTA players Maria Kirilenko and Maria Joao Koehler.

This is probably a simultaneous candidate for most-awkward-bike-ride-ever and best-bike-ride-ever.  At least DelPo showed up in matching casual-wear, what is Reeshard’s deal?  He just runs to his bicycling date straight from the practice courts, with the red-dirt still on his sneakers?  Poor form, Reeshie.  Extremely poor form.  I’d still love to see a transcript of the stilted-English conversation they had during this bike ride.

Photo: ATP

DelPo keeps wandering off by himself at the front of the pack.  Glad to see he’s using his long levers for this bike ride.

Photos: Estoril Open

Photos: Estoril Open

DelPo is the top seed at Estoril, and apparently hedecided to bring his swagger with him.  I think it’s a good look that suits him!  Observe the photographic evidence:

Photos: Estoril Open

He’s as cool as a cucumber, while Reeshard nervously fidgets on his bike.

Photos: Estoril Open

Thanks to @CandyLaughLove for this photo!  DelPo really does the Vogue poses very well.  He’s wearing his “deep thinker” face.  It’s such a contrast to Frederico Gil’s carefree happy face!  Reeshie, as always, looks slightly disturbed by his surroundings.

DelPo and Reeshard then undertook a public training session together, where Reeshard was reportedly striking the ball very well.

**

Back to business!

After a R1 bye, DelPo will play the winner of Rui Machado-Pedro Sousa.  Pedro Sousa (not to be confused with Joau Sousa) was DelPo’s R1 opponent at Estoril last year — I remember Pedro Sousa, because he wore his shorts very low last year — they were practically grazing his ankles — also, he took a set off DelPo in their R1 match in 2011.  Those were not-so-pleasant memories.  However, given the higher ranking and experience of Rui Machado, Machado looks the likelier of the Portuguese players to advance to R2.

Albert Montanes is in DelPo’s quarter and he may prove to be a troublesome threat.  Monty has recent wins over Milos and Tomic, and he is a credible clay-courter who can pressure the top players.  Should DelPo advance to the SF, he would face Wawrinka.  All in all, DelPo will have to start strongly if he wants a great jump-start to the clay season.

Here are a couple of links, courtesy of @JoseMorgado, to DelPo practising in Estoril:

It looks like DelPo will be scheduled to play his R2 match on either Wednesday/Thursday.  Updates to DelPo’s title defense will be added, as they appear!

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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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7 Responses to Estoril: Bem-vindo ao Estoril

  1. Candy says:

    lol Dont need to mention me here, hah. I just found it so funny and enjoyed Delpo being a BOSS! 😛

    Those pics of Delpo with model pose always crack me up. We have already seen many pics of him putting his hand at his waist, no? I’m sure he has those model genes inside his body!!! 😀

    Of course Delpo is a great cyclist. Remember this
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Juan-Mart%C3%ADn-del-Potro/245291448857687?ref=ts#!/photo.php?fbid=269051563148342&set=a.248553415198157.66691.245291448857687&type=3&theater
    Tour de Tandil!!! 😛

    • mariposaxprs says:

      DelPo does photograph well with the model pose! I’m pretty sure the photographer doesn’t even need to give him advice, he can strike a pose like he was born with it. L’oreal should consider sponsoring him!!

      I loooovve the idea of a Tour de Tandil 🙂 DelPo does like riding his bicycles — it seems like it would be odd, yet he looks great, and it’s a great way to train for fitness too. Perfect solution is perfect!

  2. Smith says:

    For results and schedule information about estoril open 2012 visit the link and bookmark it for future updates
    Estoril Open 2012 Results

  3. Iram says:

    oh I’ve missed ur posts so much! Now I’m back and I’ll be able to ready them leisurely.
    Didn’t Albert win the title 2 or 3 years ago when he beat Roger in the final? I think Albert used to be a threat on clay, but it seems this past year like age is catching up with him.
    And thanks for the pics. Potrugal seems like a beautiful country.
    Hope u’re having a good week. 🙂

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Hey Iram, great to hear from you!!! I hope you enjoyed your vacation!!!! 🙂

      You’re right, Montanes won Estoril in 2009 and 2010—he defeated Federer in the SF in 2010, so that was a very impressive win indeed! Monty’s been in solid form at the start of the clay season too, so it will be even more nerve-wracking for me as a DelPo fan o_0

      Thanks, I hope you’re having a great week too and settling in back home after your time abroad!!

  4. queridorafa says:

    I love DelPo’s matching track suit so much! Also that pic of him w/ his hand in casually in his pocket as he biked. He is one cool customer. 😉

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Haha I really like his cool customer look. I hope he bring his confident bearings with him to the 2nd part of the year!!! The matching track suit is awesome. There’s this theory that the better dressed you are for an athletic hobby, the more of an amateur you are—so a cyclist who hops on a bike wearing old shorts and a torn t-shirt is probably more expert than the cyclist who’s dressed perfectly for the task. I’m still confident, however, that DelPo is a great cyclist. Incidentally, awhile ago I purchased nice tennis-playing clothes. Oops! 😉

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