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Entries from June 2021

Episode 301f: French Open Day 13: Djokovic Turns Back Nadal

June 11th, 2021 · Comments

Novak Djokovic dealt Rafael Nadal only the third defeat of his Roland Garros career on Friday, knocking out the 13-time French Open champion in four sets, in a match that had people calling it one of the greatest of all time during the epic third set.

Andrew Eccles of The Spin joins to discuss how this match ranks in the pantheon, what Djokovic did to defy the odds, how surprising the result is, and if Nadal's days of dominance could be done. We also briefly discuss the first semifinal, the bizarre behavior of a Eurosport commentator during it, and what we're hoping for in the women's final.

Thank you again for the incredible support for NCR we've received on the NCR Patreon which has powered us into our TENTH(!) season! Please consider joining in as we bring you the best shows we can during the French Open! And thank you to the many listeners who have already given their support! (And thank you to G.O.A.T. backers J O'D, Mike, Pam Shriver, and Nicole Copeland!)

Tags: tennis · sports · rafael nadal · novak djokovic · french open · sascha zverev · roland garros · stefanos tsitsipas

Episode 301e: French Open Day 12: Speaking Greek Tennis (With Vicky Georgatou)

June 10th, 2021 · Comments

Greece is the word at the 2021 French Open, with two semifinalists in Maria Sakkari and Stefanos Tsitsipas. Sakkari lost in an epic semifinal on Thursday against Barbora Krejcikova (who plays Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the final), while Tsitsipas hopes to make his first Slam final with a win on Friday.

To discuss the Greeks, we are joined with the Athena of tennis media, Vicky Georgatou, who is manning the Argo of Greek tennis coverage all by herself at Roland Garros. What was the key to Sakkari's run? How is Tsitsipas' quirky personality received in Greece? And what does the growth of the sport do for tennis in Greece?

Thank you again for the incredible support for NCR we've received on the NCR Patreon which has powered us into our TENTH(!) season! Please consider joining in as we bring you the best shows we can during the French Open! And thank you to the many listeners who have already given their support! (And thank you to G.O.A.T. backers J O'D, Mike, Pam Shriver, and Nicole Copeland!)

Tags: tennis · sports · wta · women's sports · french open · roland garros · stefanos tsitsipas

Episode 301d: French Open Day 11 - Women Open Up, Top Men March Onward (With Pam Shriver)

June 9th, 2021 · Comments

What semblance of stability there had been in the women's draw disappeared with Iga Swiatek's loss on Wednesday to Maria Sakkari, making it four first-time Slam semifinalists in the final four of the French Open.

Hall of Famer Pam Shriver joins Ben to discuss the women's draw, and the high-quality tennis that has led to an unlikely semifinal slate which also includes Barbora Krejcikova, who defeated Coco Gauff earlier on Wednesday.

We also discuss the chalk on the men's draw, where sure things Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal advanced through four-setters to set up yet another big time meeting in the semifinals. How will that big showdown in the semifinals influence the final?

Thank you again for the incredible support for NCR we've received on the NCR Patreon which has powered us into our TENTH(!) season! Please consider joining in as we bring you the best shows we can during the French Open! And thank you to the many listeners who have already given their support! (And thank you to G.O.A.T. backers J O'D, Mike, Pam Shriver, and Nicole Copeland!)

Tags: tennis · sports · atp · rafael nadal · novak djokovic · iga swiatek · roland garros · anastasia pavlyuchenkova

Episode 301c: French Open Day 10: Tsitsipas Beats Medvedev

June 8th, 2021 · Comments

In the most highly anticipated quarterfinal, Stefanos Tsitsipas dispatched his rival Daniil Medvedev in straight sets.

Ben is joined by The Guardian's Tumaini Carayol, NCR's Spain and Sub-Saharan Africa correspondent, to discuss Tsitsipas' big win, how it sets up the men's draw, and how much sizzle there really still is to the Tsitsipas-Medvedev beef. We also discuss Tsitsipas' semifinal opponent Sascha Zverev, and the difficult position we and others are put in by having to discuss him while the ATP fails to address or resolve the accusations against him.

We also discuss Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Tamara Zidansek reaching the women's semifinals, and what these continued surprises in women's slam mean in terms of quantifying the achievements. 

Thank you again for the incredible support for NCR we've received on the NCR Patreon which has powered us into our TENTH(!) season! Please consider joining in as we bring you the best shows we can during the French Open! And thank you to the many listeners who have already given their support! (And thank you to G.O.A.T. backers J O'D, Mike, Pam Shriver, and Nicole Copeland!)

Tags: tennis · sports · atp · french open · sascha zverev · roland garros · anastasia pavlyuchenkova · stefanos tsitsipas · daniil medvedev

Episode 301b: French Open Day 9: Quarterfinal Previews and Such

June 7th, 2021 · Comments

Ben and Courtney reconvene to discuss the eight women and eight men left standing after four rounds at Roland Garros, and how things might play out from here.

We start with Andy Murray fave Iga Swiatek, the last to book her spot, who is becoming an increasingly prohibitive favorite. How will she handle that role? And what of the other women in the top draw who can trouble her? And how might things shake out on the more open bottom half?

In the men's draw, after Courtney weighs in on Federer's withdrawal, we give some props to Diego Schwartzman and then dive into the weird Musetti-Djokovic, which was thrilling and close and then immediately stopped being either of those things on a dime. Also some hopes for Tsitsipas-Medvedev and how we talk about that other quarterfinalist.

Thank you again for the incredible support for NCR we've received on the NCR Patreon which has powered us into our TENTH(!) season! Please consider joining in as we bring you the best shows we can during the French Open! And thank you to the many listeners who have already given their support! (And thank you to G.O.A.T. backers J O'D, Mike, Pam Shriver, and Nicole Copeland!)

Tags: tennis · sports · atp · wta · rafael nadal · novak djokovic · andy murray · roger federer · women's sports · french open · sascha zverev · roland garros · sloane stephens · diego schwartzman · anastasia pavlyuchenkova · stefanos tsitsipas · coco gauff · daniil medvedev · jannik sinner

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