Monday, September 12, 2005

Living legends...... (on the losing side, sadly)

So Federer got Agassi in 4. 1 set more than I had predicted. Thanks to an amazing fighting effort by the 35 year old Agassi. Agassi played for his life in the 2nd and 3rd sets, but still fell short of THE GOD.

Agassi might probably retire at the end of the year. What a ride it has been for him. After turning pro in 1986 he played in the big league for 20 years. In a sport where an average player's career lasts for 10 odd years, 20 years is just mind-boggling. I remember the first time I heard about Agassi was back in 90 French Open finals. Andre Agassi vs Andres Gomez. Agassi lost that one. Then again one year later to Jim Courier. Then in 92 he defeated Goran Ivanisevic in an epic 5-set Wimbledon final and really burst into the real big league.

One of the reasons why Agassi did not win more Grand Slams (8), is the fact that he was in the same era as the great Pete Sampras. Agassi was good, but Sampras was even better. At the peak of his career he had to encounter the booming game of Pistol Pete. Their rivarly was legendary. I guess Agassi must be the guy with the most number of Grand Slam final appearances.

Hats off to the great Andre Agassi. Hope he retires now, when he is at the top....

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An even bigger legend in terms of impact on the sport is Shane Warne. True, England finally won the Ashes and deserve all the accolades showered upon them. But at age 36, Warne took 40 wickets at an average of 19.92 to extend his lead as the greatest wicket-taker of all times. To put things into perspective, the next highest wicket-taker on either side was Andy Flintoff with 24 wickets. Simply put, Warne is the greatest spinner I have ever seen. He is single-handedly responsible for reviving the lost art of leg-spin bowling and giving faith to spinners all over the world that it is not all about bowling fast.

Now there is news that he might retire. End to another amazing roller-coaster career. The "ball of the century" to dismiss Mike Gatting, his problems with weight, his escapades, his steroid related ban, his amazing comeback and his race with Murali for the world's highest wicket taker, it has all been just one hell of a ride for him. If you ask me he was the number one reason for the Australian dominance in both test and one-day cricket the past few years(McGrath was 2 & Steve Waugh 3)

As Gilli oft says - Bowling Shane...........

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