The Buzz: Who Was That Naked Frenchman in the Lobby?


By Bill Simons

WIMBLEDON BANS NARCISSISM: Wimbledon banned selfie-sticks.

SOUNDS THAT WAY TO US: Sara Errani grunts in Italian.

WHO IS THAT NAKED FRENCHMAN IN THE LOBBY? A light-hearted Martina Navratilova tweeted, “You know you travel too much when you have to look up your own room number from a WhatsApp message you wrote yesterday.” Then came a reply from France’s retired star Henri LeConte: “Ever woken at night and walked outside [your hotel room] thinking it was the toilet? … [I] did! Naked had to go to lobby!”

CURIOUS QUESTIONS: Daily Tennis asked, “Under what circumstances would you entrust your fate to Petra Kvitova?” … Andrea Petkovic was asked whether she was the female Roger Federer.

SIGN OF THE TIMES? You might think that the huge flag flown by a plane in England that read,”RODGERS OUT, RAFA’S IN” was all about Roger Federer, Rafa Nadal, and tennis’s spiciest rivalry.

Wrong. The banner above a soccer stadium in Liverpool may incidentally have suggested the future of tennis, but in fact, it called for the firing of Liverpool Reds’ soccer manager Brendan Rodgers, asking for him to be replaced by the club’s previous leader Rafael Benitez. Still, don’t forget that earlier this year Roger himself said, “[If Rafa] wins the French Open a few more times, and I don’t win anymore [Slams], then clearly he can catch me very quickly.”

CAUTION—PETKOVIC’S COOKING MAY BE DANGEROUS TO YOUR HEALTH: Andrea Petkovic tweeted, “I’m cooking and it’s amazing and everybody’s excited and we will all die soon.”

BAGEL BOSS: After noting that the gluten-free Novak Djokovic this year has won been on the right side of nine 6-0 sets this year, Mary Carillo said, “For a guy who is so politically correct when it comes to food, he sure makes a lot of other people eat bagels.”

SPEAKING OF BAGELS: After Penelope Abreu lost 6-0, 6-0 to CiCi Bellis in Junior Fed Cup play, she asked for a picture with her foe…In Miami, Carla Suarez Navarro was bageled by Venus and Serena in the same tournament.

RICKY, DON’T LOSE THAT NUMBER: As young Jordan Spieth won golf’s Masters Tournament, Ricky Dimon tweeted, “When I think about how epic the future of pro golf is, it makes me even more scared for tennis.” But tennis sage Tom Tebutt countered, “Cool it, Ricky, tennis will be just fine.”

A COMPARISON FOR THE AGES: Left-handed broadcaster Mary Carillo said 18-year-old lefty Taylor Townsend reminded her of left-handed Henri Leconte.

OH, TO BE RICH, FAMOUS AND CHIC IN MONTE CARLO: After Justin Gimelstob said, “There are a lot of beautiful people hanging out here in Monte Carlo,” Mary Carillo joked, “And famous people too. We just don’t know what they’re famous for.”

“[They are] the .0001 percent that you are a part of, Mary,” added Gimelstob.

“Yeah, I’m really part of that café society,” replied Carillo.

THE CURSE OF HAVING TO RIDE RENTAL PONIES: The retirement of Jon Stewart from The Daily Show brings to mind a time Stewart teased a politician. The comic joked acidly that the political figure was “not concerned about the very poor … [who] have to play tennis on public courts [and] ride rental ponies.”

GO FIGURE: The Nadal vs. Djokovic Monte Carlo Masters semi was the first time in 263 clay court matches that Rafa was not the oddsmakers’ favorite … The Jack Sock vs. Sam Querrey final at the US Men’s Clay Court Championship was the first All-American final at the tourney in River Oaks, Texas in 12 years. Sock, 22, prevailed to claim his first ATP singles title … The last WTA player to win the Aussie and French Opens in the same year was Jennifer Capriati in 2001 … After three months, Martina Navratilova resigned as Aga Radwanska‘s coach … A couple of years ago, Madrid switched from blue back to red clay courts. This year, they stopped using models as ball persons and employed regular folks. (Now when will Emirates Air tennis promotions include male model as well as female model air attendants?)

JUST WONDERING: Will Serena or Djokovic have a better year, and can either win the Grand Slam?