"It was lots of fun and made me want more!"
I am back from Australia and of course I want to keep you in the loop. I have to say: I am pleased with my performance in every respect and seriously happy that my health didn't let me down. Everything went well. Of course, it would have been nice to play a further match but there just wasn't any chance against Nadal. That needs to be honored without envy. He demonstrated amazing tennis. And his participation in the finals on Sunday shows the high level he is currently playing. It is surely going to be a tight duel, but should it outlast 5 sets he will probably beat Roger.
I was very nervous when I arrived in Melbourne and kept on asking myself whether I was doing the right thing. Before the first match, especially, I hardly slept. The risks involved in a five set match after the injury really gave me sleepless nights. But now I can say that my decision was right after all. To play in front of 15000 people against the no. 1 in the world ranking is why I go through agonizing training. It was great fun and made me want more. That is why I will play a few hard court matches here in the states in the following weeks and will hopefully get back into top form.
My health is up to scratch so far. I still feel it in my elbow when I don't hit a ball quite right but at least my shoulder is holding up. From time to time I still have to take painkillers but it is happening less and less. Throughout the three rounds the release of adrenalin has certainly helped me black out my injuries and let me play full throttle.
Off-court I had a very pleasant time in Down Under. I often went to eat at "Koko's", a very good Japanese. In the evenings I mostly enjoyed my hotel: they had a small cinema with very comfortable chairs. You could really stretch out your legs. I think I watched as many as 5 movies in that week. My good friend Glenn often joined me. And at times also Patrick K¸hnen and my ex-trainer Thomas Hogstedt. Those two have also kindly coached me during the tournament.
Furthermore, the picture with Marat Safin was taken in Melbourne. He claims to be playing his last tour. So I had to have a picture taken with him. Will he really go through with his plan? Would be a shame.
On Friday I'll be on a plane for California. And the following Monday is the start of the SAP Open in San Jose. Believe me: The Australian Open made me eager to play that tour.
See you soon and greetings from Florida