The Australian Open

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p1200852

Melbourne Park, Melbourne.

Today, in blistering 41 degree weather, we spent several hours at the Australian Open. It was a bright sunny day, but man, was it hot. Funny that it should be this kind of temperature where just one post ago I was saying how I was glad that Melbourne’s Summer had been somewhat cooler than normal! It’s not uncommon for the Australian Open to be hit with heatwaves however. We often watch these poor players with uncontrollable sweat running down their faces battling it out – and on some occasions, calling it a day due to sheer heat exhaustion.

We watched a set or so of Richard Gasquet versus Diego Junqueira(Gasquet going on to win), but the heat was very difficult to deal with. While there was not the humidity of China, there was the burning sun in a clear blue sky. In China, while the heat was oppressive, the sun was not often out(when it came out..look out!). The sun was usually hidden behind cloud/smog cover – keeping the humidity in with nowhere to go. But in Sunny Melbourne..man that Sun had bite.

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Jie Zheng belting out a powerful shot.

Retiring from the court – which other than what you brought with you, was completely lacking in shade, we grabbed some cooling sushi, some water, then wandered around the other courts. We settled in and watched some games between China’s Jie Zheng and France’s Camille Pin. Zheng went on to beat her 6-3, 6-3. I found myself rooting for the Chinese player. I said to Courtney, “If there were no aussies playing, I’d go for the Chinese players.” I feel like I have this affiliation with the country.

We sat there smiling at an enthusiastic Chinese guy on the opposite side of the court. He was waving his large Chinese flag when not using it as a cape(aka protection from the sun). He would start a cheer, “Jie Zheng! Jie Zheng!”, pronouncing her name correctly, sounding like “Jong”, while the referee in true clueless westerner style pronounced it as “Jeng.” I suppose it’s good they at least had the ZH = J sound right, though you cant expect everyone to know every other cultures pronuciations I guess – particularly Chinese where some of them are really quite difficult and completely different to english(ie: zh, ts, x etc).

It was also great to hear some of the Chinese spectators chatting. Whenever we hear Chinese being spoken, our ears prick up, recognizing words. Hearing things like xiexie and ZhongGuo! ZhongGuo! (China! China!) really floats our boat!

Anyhow it was a great day though marred by the extreme weather. It hit 41 before cooling down in the late afternoon. We didn’t particularly favour being burnt to a crisp so retired early. We rounded out the day with a nice fish and salad meal and a long soak in the spa. Next year we’ll try and get to the open again. We were sad not to be able to catch the tennis in Shanghai while we were in China. For anyone interested in going to the Australian Open, we highly reccomend it.

Gasquest vs Junqueira

Gasquet vs Junqueira

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One Response to “The Australian Open”

  1. Kai Says:

    Hi nice blog!! 🙂
    i arrived here after serching some picks of diego.

    GL!

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