Ben Rothenberg Profile picture
Host @NCR_Tennis podcast, Senior Editor @racquetmagazine, and currently writing a book. Enjoy Eurovision, trivia, and the Flyers.
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Jan 16 6 tweets 2 min read
Doing some digging into precedents, it seems clear that the Djokovic deportation is delaying the #AusOpen scheduling release considerably.

In both 2017 + 2018, the Day 1 OOP was released on Saturday evening; it's now Sunday afternoon.

This is holding the other players in limbo. (Periodic and important reminder that Djokovic could have avoided all this rigamarole by simply getting vaccinated like 97%+ of his tennis player peers have.)
Jan 15 54 tweets 12 min read
Court is in session, with Novak Djokovic's case coming in front of a panel of three judges.

Watch here:

Whether or not you're on Novak Djokovic's side here, one thing is clear:

His arrival in Australia accelerated this country's courtroom streaming technology capabilities by *decades*.
Jan 13 4 tweets 2 min read
#AusOpen draw ceremony is in an hour.

Here's a brief rulebook thread on how it will work with seedings re: Djokovic, as his fate remains unknown.

If Djokovic pulls out of #AusOpen in short time left before the draw (very unlikely), #2 Daniil Medvedev would become #1 seed. If Djokovic pulls out after #AusOpen draw but before Day 1 order of play is released, #5 Andrey Rublev would be moved to Line 1 of draw to take Djokovic's slot. #17 Gael Monfils would move onto Rublev's line, and Alexander Bublik would become #33 seed and move onto Monfils' line.
Jan 12 7 tweets 3 min read

In Instagram statement, Novak Djokovic says that he found out his positive PCR test after he went to the children’s award event but *before* he did a photoshoot and interview with L’Equipe. Djokovic also added a bit on his Australian Travel Declaration misstatement, calling it a “human error and certainly not deliberate.”
Jan 11 6 tweets 3 min read
Visit from the trainer on the first changeover of Bernard Tomic's match. He's taking his pulse before serving down break point. #AusOpen ^Tomic was taking his own pulse before serving, to be clear. He got broken.

Tomic was hyping up his return to #AusOpen competition quite a bit on social media, but this is rough going for him against in-form Roman Safiullin.
Jan 9 27 tweets 4 min read
The Djokovic deportation appeal hearing is underway. I've gotten an (audio) pipeline in, but technical issues persist. Will do my best to keep folks up to date.

Opening arguments now from Djokovic's lawyer, who is focusing on fairness. The Djokovic deportation appeal hearing stream is now working for me; good luck to the rest of you.
Jan 8 18 tweets 9 min read
A question lingering: if Djokovic was claiming a coronavirus positive in last six months as reason for an exemption, when did he get it?

According to BBC, his lawyers say that Djokovic tested positive very recently, less than a month ago, on December 16.… December 16 was a busy day for Djokovic:

In addition to purportedly getting a PCR test for Covid that came back positive, Djokovic also was part of a maskless, indoor panel discussion and attended a maskless, indoor ceremony for a stamp being made in his honor on that day. ImageImageImage
Jan 6 4 tweets 2 min read
Had to check out the scene myself at the Park Hotel where Djokovic is being detained and where his supporters have gathered to protest his impending deportation for being unvaccinated. #AusOpen Image Crucially, the Park Hotel has also been used to detain refugees seeking asylum, some of whom have been imprisoned there for years.
Sep 8, 2021 4 tweets 2 min read
Raducanu was untouchable at #USOpen so far, but this is her first match here (and first career match) against a top-40 foe.

And Bencic is a gold medalist just last month, so not just any top-40 player.

Bencic has put pressure on her right from the jump, instilling some doubt. Raducanu settled and balling now.

On serve, 4-3*, with eight winners to Bencic's four.

Jun 7, 2021 4 tweets 2 min read
People find that satisfying? A super-talented young player emerges and plays 2.5 hours of jaw-dropping, world-beating tennis…and then enough time passes for regression to the mean and normal programming resumes, and it’s deflating. Djokovic earns the win, sure, but yawn. Part of the appeal of sports, I truly believe, is that anything can happen. The any given Sunday principle that sees things like Mickelson winning in his 50s.

In men’s tennis at Slams, the margins are just too big to ever derail the top guys, and it’s cruise control to a fault.
Jun 7, 2021 5 tweets 2 min read
Djokovic 6-1 in the third with some ease, upping his level after an off-court break and running away with it. #RG21 And now Djokovic already up a break in the fourth. #RG21
Oct 14, 2020 13 tweets 4 min read
OK, so here is the story of Sam Querrey fleeing Russia after testing positive for coronavirus:

[thread] 49th-ranked Sam Querrey entered the ATP 500 St. Petersburg, and was slated to face second-seeded Denis Shapovalov in the first round of the main draw.

Before that match, however, Sam tested positive for coronavirus.

So, too, did Sam's wife, Abby, and eight-month-old son, Ford.
Jun 28, 2020 10 tweets 4 min read
Sascha Zverev six days ago after Adria Tour coronavirus cluster:

“I deeply apologize to anyone that I have put at risk...I will proceed to follow self-isolating guidelines...stay safe 🙏.”

Sascha Zverev four hours ago: This is my concern with tennis attempting to come back mid-pandemic: not that precautions can’t be taken, but that too many tennis players are conditioned to be wildly self-centered and have no concept of how to act for the greater interest of a larger group.
May 7, 2020 7 tweets 3 min read
Undaunted, ATP #1 Novak Djokovic continues to give his big platform over to some truly nutty pseudoscience blabber.

Not as potentially dangerous as being anti-vaccines, but NO, you cannot change the molecular structure of water with your emotions, ffs.

And by big platform, look at these numbers Djokovic has already gotten for this content.

That’s why it matters what he puts out and espouses and endorses.
Apr 22, 2019 5 tweets 4 min read
Read the full victim impact statement from Randall Kaplan, the man beaten by Justin Gimelstob last Halloween. (1/5) Kaplan statement (2/5)
Jun 6, 2018 14 tweets 3 min read
With rain ending today's play prematurely, figured I'd do a brief thread on the match-fixing allegations against surprise French Open semifinalist Marco Cecchinato, which don't seem to be widely understood. (I wrote about Cecchinato's case for @NYTSports back in 2016, shortly after he was given an 18 month ban and fined 40,000 euros by the Federation of Italian Tennis (FIT) for his involvement in three betting-related offenses.…