|Posted on November 19, 2015 at 9:00 PM|
'Tomas Berdych the Flying Net Man'
London | Thursday, November 19, 2015
Source: www.tennis.com by Steve Tignor
Djokovic broke Berdych in his opening service game, "the Berd suddenly decided to take flight".
Berdych got a mid-court forehand and pounded it crosscourt; but instead of waiting for the next ball at the baseline, as he always does, he flew toward the net. It was a strange and unnatural sight, to say the least, to see the big man get low for a volley, but it worked out perfectly.
A stunned Djokovic hit the ball right back at him, and Berdych, showing solid volley technique, punched it away for a winner. Later in the set, Berdych again pounded another ground stroke, ghosted in behind it, and deftly cupped under the ball for a drop volley winner. Djokovic looked across the net as if he wanted to ask, “Who are you?”
Berdych continued his free-flying ways by slicing a backhand down the line that completely flummoxed Djokovic and drew an error. Yet despite the strong, smart, varied play, Berdych still couldn’t grab a lead. Serving at 3-4, he hit a forehand close to the line that was mistakenly called wide, but he failed to challenge it and was broken after drilling a swing volley into the net.
Berdych could have hit a normal volley instead, but I guess he didn’t trust his newfangled, old-school self enough to try it.