Thursday, April 7, 2016


...Henri Leconte is the bearer of advice and counsel on professionalism, among other kibbles and bits of wisdom.  This is apropos of nothing, but in case you missed it, in this clip, Leconte appears to put the squeeze on the current crop of underachieving French tennis professionals in their quest to right the wrongs of 2014 and win the Davis Cup that they seemed poised to do against the Swiss...on France.

Ironically, he was somewhat goaded into doing so by Gasquet (one of the said fruits of French tennis' labor) who tells Leconte, who was at first reticent to name names, to do just that.  I think it was an attempt to get him to shut up, but instead, Leconte being Leconte, he wound up goading him into calling out Monfils!  I mean with friends like that, who needs enemies?

This is also ironic on another level - Leconte was also considered to be way too talented not to win a major in his day, and wasn't exactly the fittest or most committed player in history.  Nobody got more out of their talent in the history of tennis than Leconte, because it sure serbert didn't come from time spent running the Swiss hills (where it seems so many french tennis players choose to live, but I digress).  But his insane performance in Lyon in 1991, defeating Sampras, then winning the doubles with Forget (giving France a 2-1 lead) has essentially washed away his "sins" at Roland Garros.

Of course, for some fans of his (myself included), there was Henri and...well everyone else....

He was even given a heroe's sending off at Roland Garros after having sustained one of the most humiliating losses of his career in the final there in 1988, where he famously hoped the French public now "understand, a bit, my game," which of course they did not and excoriated him (immediately) for entreating them to.  The tennis world, like the world in its entirety, is round, and it seems we've come all the way around to treating Leconte like a wiseman, rather than the "genius from the elbow down" he used to be.


So now he espouses the value of hard work and commitment in the Davis Cup context, when he himself was no gym rat.  Let's face it - in his best physical form, he still had saggy breasts pecs and legs that looked more like they belonged under an accountant's desk, than on a tennis court.  

Well, I mean, I shouldn't judge...bean counters play tennis too!  It's a mad mad world indeed...
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