Tennis players often pull out crumpled notes. Rohit Brijnath dissects the extreme loneliness of tennis players
Music at changeovers and fans hooting from the top tier. You want silence, go to a cemetery. This is the US Open. It’s alive. One year, 1977, a spectator is hit by a bullet in the leg. One year, Boris Becker says, “You can play a saxophone in the stands and nobody cares." But all this is just the beginning. Because amid all this, your rival is slapping backhands down the line, he’s Garry Kasparov in sneakers with a sneer, reading your moves, his shots scattering your concentration, and you desperately need a counter-strategy, a plan, something, but there is no help allowed during a match, no voice allowed to calm you, no coach allowed to guide you.