Today turned out to be an unexpected day for DelPo-related news.
DelPo seems to have taken fashion advice from a certain Maestro, as the navy linen suit fits him quite well.
First things first: DelPo is now in Mendoza, Argentina to play an exho against Fernando Gonzalez. Gonzo had reportedly wanted to play his 2007 AO final opponent Fed in his farewell exho, but the exho organizers could not afford Fed’s steep price of $2M. Thus, DelPo stepped in as a replacement for Fed:
DelPo arrived in Mendoza and took part in a press conference with Gonzo. The Mendoza exhos will feature a match between Charly Berlocq and Mendoza native Martin Alund, who was a last-minute replacement for Edu Schwank (who withdrew from the exho with a hand injury). Then, the main match between DelPo and Gonzo will take place.
(Photos above are courtesy of the Sitio Andin page)
DelPo played Gonzo last year at the Nokia Summer Cup exho at Punta del Este, Uruguay. This time around, DelPo is an Olympic medal winner. One of Gonzo’s famous accomplishments was winning a gold, silver and bronze medal for Chile at the 2004 and 2008 Summer Olympics (at present, his 3 medals constitute over 20% of Chile’s entire Olympic medal haul). So it will be nice to see a past Olympic medalist and a current reigning Olympic medalist playing an exho against each other in South America.
In Other News:
- DelPo said he will be announcing in a few days whether or not he plays the Feb. R1 tie against Germany at home. Nalby has already announced his withdrawal from the AO, in order to fully prepare for the tie. Given how DelPo did not play R1 this year, as a means to better improve his ranking, it’s tough to imagine him committing to a R1 tie in 2013. This will likely not bode well for ARG’s team dynamic.
- A few weeks ago, Nalbandian confirmed he is expecting a baby with his long-time girlfriend Victoria. The baby is reportedly due in May. Recently retired Gisela Dulko also announced she is pregnant with her first child (with husband Fernando Gago). Given how both Nalby and Dulko are parents-to-be in 2013, you have to wonder if a top mixed-doubles team is in the making for the 2036 Olympics. I could totally see Nalby as a tennis parent who takes every match way too seriously (but in a light-hearted cranky way, as opposed to the scary way).
- DelPo won the Olimpia de Plata award for Tennis this year. He was a previous winner of the Olimpia de Oro in 2009. In the more highly publicized BBC SPOTY awards, Muzz came in 3rd, while Fed won the 2012 Swiss Athlete of the Year.
- Lastly, the unsavory news of the day: A reported ex-girlfriend of DelPo’s recently released a tape of a phone conversation between the two. There is a rough copy of the conversation available here, which contains very adult content. The person on the phone does in fact sound a lot like DelPo, but the circumstances of the conversation are still unclear. Given that it’s the off-season, this bit of news is attracting quite a lot of attention.
Assuming that the person in the said phone conversation is DelPo, I would compare this to the “topless Kate Middleton” photo scandal. In both cases, the privacy of the people in question was breached. Both DelPo and Kate had a more than reasonable expectation for privacy in their respective cases.
On the other hand, maybe famous people should take extra measures to guard themselves against people who would take advantage of them. While DelPo is not royalty, he is a recognized face in Argentina. So perhaps he should take greater care to ensure he’s not as vulnerable to the likes of those who will try to profit off a scandal. The ATP University advises its graduates to be careful of the voice mails and calls they make on their phones (since everything can be recorded and shared). On a similar note, Kate should cover up when she steps outside of her front door, since photographers can lurk anywhere.
It may not be fair, but life is unfair and you have to account for that when you try to figure out how to come out on top anyway. Plus, the payoff for discretion is considerable, whether it’s in the form of endorsements or becoming the Queen of England one day. Here’s to all members of The Firm practicing more discretion in the future.
Unfortunately, DelPo doesn’t have royal minders/vigilantes at his command who can shut down websites or threaten to sue the head of newspapers for millions of dollars. But he is much younger than Kate, so I’d say he’s already ahead of the curve when it comes to living and learning — now he just needs to catch up on the learning part (unfortunately, he is a male civilian, which means he cannot erase all his follies with a royal pregnancy. Bummer!)
Anyhow, I hope We (royal “We”) can put this incident firmly behind us. Let us hope for the 2013 season to start already.
The Mendoza exho starts at 8:30PM on Dec. 21, 2012 (local time, which is the same time zone as Buenos Aires: -3 GMT).