Tuesday, October 16, 2012


I was very happy to be at the final of the Shanghai Masters on Sunday. I was even happier that a fellow Scot, Andy Murray, had made it through to the final. As he was playing Djokovic I knew this would be a great match to see. This was to be my first live tennis event and I was really excited about it.

We arrived at the stadium with lots of time to spare. A wander around the various eating, drinking and retail areas, a quick bite of lunch and we were all set. The stadium looked amazing. The roof is in the design of a lotus flower. When the roof is closed all the points of the flower come together to meet in the centre. It must be amazing to see the "petals" swivel inwards.

However, as it was a beautiful late summer afternoon the roof would remain open. It was so nice to be sitting outdoors, wearing t-shirts this late in the year. Even when we were leaving the venue at around 9-00pm there was no need for a coat or even a cardi. Is this really mid October?

So we settled down to watch the doubles final. Have to confess it was not so exciting. It seemed that more than half the stadium was empty at this point. Obviously everyone was waiting for the big event. But I feel as we had the tickets for the day, why not enjoy as much as we could.

Soon it was time for Murray and Djokovic come onto the court. The stadium was now filling up and the atmosphere had changed significantly. A great game was about to begin.

The crowd were cheering on both players, and I was surprised by the number of Chinese people carrying Scottish banners, flags, and Murray banners. This accompanied by shouts of "Mullay, Mullay" made me smile. Yes, the Chinese do pronounce "r's" as "l's". It was really funny. The game was soon underway and as expected it was a great one. Both players playing a hard fast game. From the beginning you could sense it could go either way. Obviously our hearts were with Murray and we were willing him on. No one was giving an inch and the first set eventually went to Murray much to our delight. 

Second set was also very close but Murray just couldn't close on it, although had a couple of match points. Still a third set was okay by me. Sadly it was not to be Andy's night in Shanghai. He had won this final for the last two years, but tonight Djokovic won through. It was not a walkover by any means, it was a great final.

Did the outcome spoil my day? Not in the slightest. I saw a wonderful game of tennis in a wonderful city, and it is another wonderful memory of my time here. Can't be much wrong with that.

I think these two players are about to dominate the tennis world for the next few years. The number one and two spots will be theirs. The next generation of tennis superstars. Can I dare hope to see them play again? I certainly hope so, maybe next time the result will be different.

My experiences in Shanghai just go on and on. I am so very lucky.

1 comment:

  1. Great that you were able to watch it live. Shame Andy didn't win, but I'm sure he's a force to be reckoned with.