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The most unpopular number one

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:21 pm

Hello

Very Happy

Every time I've watched Djokovic play someone other than Nadal the crowd has supported his opponent.

Can anyone think of an occasion when this didn't happen (outside of Serbia)? What gives? Why is Djokovic so unpopular? I don't think people dislike him per se (contrast to Lendl), it seems rather that they don't care for him or his brand of tennis.

Personally I find him quite an affable guy. He does try a little too hard to crowd please but then who can blame him. It's not even like he's a dominant machine winning all and sundry. Apart from a few moths in 2011 he's always looked beatable.

So why does the Djoker bring such little joy to tennis fans?

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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:22 pm

Every time I've watched Djokovic play someone other than Nadal the crowd has supported his opponent.
In this case surely Nadal could be the most unpopular number 1 ? Wink

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:30 pm

It Must Be Love wrote:
Every time I've watched Djokovic play someone other than Nadal the crowd has supported his opponent.
In this case surely Nadal could be the most unpopular number 1 ? Wink

No

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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:32 pm

emancipator wrote:

No
Correct. Smile

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Post by temporary21 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:35 pm

He wasnt that unpopular at Wimbledon... or at RG when he was giving a standing ovation at the trophy presentation. The WTF crowd to be truthful hasnt been all that respectful this match, clapping between Djokos first and second serve an causing the DF. Hes not liked much in Madrid of course, and hes not as universally loved as Roger, especially in Djoko- Roger matches, but he gets good support. His only "crime" is being the other guy who isnt nadal or federer

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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:37 pm

In Roland Garros I remember the crowd in the final were pretty pro-Nadal, and some fans were even rude enough to call out just before servers etc.- and Djokovic got really annoyed with them after he lost- sarcastically clapping at the crowd as he did today.

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Post by LuvSports! Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:39 pm

He has a growing fan base in Asia, especially Beijing, where he keeps winning!

Don't agree at all at the FO, amrit.

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:46 pm

temporary21 wrote:He wasnt that unpopular at Wimbledon... or at RG when he was giving a standing ovation at the trophy presentation. The WTF crowd to be truthful hasnt been all that respectful this match, clapping between Djokos first and second serve an causing the DF. Hes not liked much in Madrid of course, and hes not as universally loved as Roger, especially in Djoko- Roger matches, but he gets good support. His only "crime" is being the other guy who isnt nadal or federer

Trophy presentations don't count. It'd be a pretty obnoxious crowd not to cheer someone at the trophy presentation. I'm referring to support during matches. His opponent always seems to get more support except on occasion against Nadal - who people either really like or don't at all.

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 3:46 pm

Rios for me the most unpopular number 1.

What a dark time in tennis that was.

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Post by HM Murdock Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:09 pm

My take is that tennis crowds usually support an underdog.

When playing Federer, Nadal or Djokovic, everyone else is the underdog.

Federer is the exception and gets support wherever he goes. But crowds often support the underdog v Djokovic and Nadal. If a player as popular as, say, Tsonga started dominating for a long period, we'd probably see crowds cheer his opponents too.

When Djokovic and Nadal play each other, they both seem to get plenty of support. So I don't think they are unpopular in an absolute sense. They have a lot of fans.

It's just that a handful of players have had a stranglehold on the game for so long, that I think crowds give their support to the challenger.

As for the most unpopular number 1, Lendl must be up there.

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Post by bogbrush Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:30 pm

Novak appears to be greatly respected more than loved, as a generalisation. I think he's a good guy who's very sporting and personally I like him.

He just happens to be around when most tennis fans revere Federer, most fangirls squeal for Rafa, and there are some Scottish people.
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Post by HM Murdock Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:39 pm

Style of play is probably also a factor.

Novak is brilliant and, as BB notes, commands due respect. His "curse" is that he is conventionally brilliant. It's a tooled-up version of a style we've seen before and is probably a precursor to another future great whose game is 'Djokovic-plus'.

Federer and Nadal have unique styles that may be impossible for someone else to replicate. That commands extra interest and interest can quickly become love.

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Post by temporary21 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:44 pm

He did also rise to prominence in 2008, the same year as the Wimby 2008 final. Hes always been up against it for the affections of fans. Hes had some bad lusk with a few bad fans calling out on MP's too

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:44 pm

Sampras wasn't universally popular as a number 1. Partly because he was quite wooden, but I felt the masses loved Agassi.

Djokovic I don't find unpopular as such, just not so much embraced as a Federer or Nadal.

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Post by temporary21 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:45 pm

If I may quickly dabble into another sport. Steve Davis in the snooker must be up there for the most unpopular number 1. He was parodied such was the extent people didnt like him

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Post by Jahu Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:47 pm

They dont like him much in Serbia either, as he is considered a tax dodger living in Monaco, though hes tryed with a few small shots donations to appease the poor people.

Otherwise, he is probably more fun for a drink then Nadal or Fed.
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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 4:48 pm

HM Murdoch wrote:Style of play is probably also a factor.

Novak is brilliant and, as BB notes, commands due respect. His "curse" is that he is conventionally brilliant. It's a tooled-up version of a style we've seen before and is probably a precursor to another future great whose game is 'Djokovic-plus'.

Federer and Nadal have unique styles that may be impossible for someone else to replicate. That commands extra interest and interest can quickly become love.
Very good point.

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Post by Silver Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:03 pm

Sampras? Lendl?

But broadly agree with points already made, particularly HM and BB.

As an aside, hope the kids aren't giving you the runaround, intergalactic overlord Hug

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Post by lags72 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:39 pm

temporary21 wrote:If I may quickly dabble into another sport. Steve Davis in the snooker must be up there for the most unpopular number 1. He was parodied such was the extent people didnt like him

There is indeed a certain similarity in the public's attitude to Djokovic and Steve Davis  - in as much as Davis was hugely respected for his massive talent & quiet efficiency, but could never really be described as a big crowd favourite, in the way that say, contemporaries Alex Higgins or Jimmy White undoubtedly were.

In fairness to Davis (and perhaps another similarity with Djokovic .....shades of his appeals to the crowd at the USO semis) he was not above joining in the fun himself towards the latter stages of his career. Some of you may remember a satirical TV sketch where Steve was discussing his lack of popularity with his own PR manager (who himself didn't think Steve was a particularly exciting player to watch!) The exchanges went something like this :

STEVE : "The thing is, I need some sort of catchy nickname which will look good in headlines"

MANAGER : "What do you mean Steve?"

STEVE : "Well, some of the other top guys have been given middle names by the media and fans. Like Jimmy "Whirlwind" White and Alex "Hurricane" Higgins ..... you know, that sort of thing .....I reckon it would give me a boost"

MANAGER : "Hmm...... so what did you have in mind, Steve?"

STEVE : "Well...... maybe I could be called Steve "Interesting" Davis ......"

MANAGER : "Bit of a problem there, Steve. I mean.... the thing is, you're not interesting, are you ....? In fact you're pretty boring to be honest."

STEVE : "Okay. I guess you're right. How about Steve "Boring-but-would-like-to-be-Interesting" Davis ....."

MANAGER : "Not sure about that Steve. Leave it with me"

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:44 pm

Hello Silver,

emancipator junior the second is slowly testing the waters as his powers grow! He has even learnt to use machines such as the TV, DVD player and sometimes the microwave. He has an uncanny ability to squeeze into the smallest of confines. I found him attempting to hide in the kitchen bin the other day Shocked

HM, I don't recall, but was Djokovic all that popular with the crowds before he became a multi slam winner (circa 2011) and therefore not always/usually expected to win?

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Post by greengoblin Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:45 pm

Its his style of play. Hewitt mark 2.

At least he will no trouble getting his son to sleep- just stick on one of his matches

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:51 pm

I think Djokovic has suffered quite a lot as a result of joining the trivalry third.

In fact I reckon if he and Nadal had swapped places and Djokovic had appeared first, and was successful first, thus establishing a rivalry with Federer first, he may have gained a lot more support. Let's face it, some people were desperate for someone to challenge Federer; desperate for anyone to beat Federer.

Rafa just happened to come along first. So he got a big following, a sort of anti-Federer brigade. Djokovic and Nadal play a similar brand of tennis. It's helped Nadal's profile that that brand of tennis contrasts nicely with the Federer style. But Djokovic could also have played that role - he too is good enough and the contrast with Federer's game is stark enough.

Sadly for him, he came too late.

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Post by lags72 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 5:54 pm

Interesting angle on things emancipator, and I think there's a lot of truth in what you say.

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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:09 pm

I don't think that's the case for me, I support Nadal because I liked his style of play.
The sort of Nadal fan who would switch to another player if they had emerged first to me is a bit like a fair-weather fan, and I wouldn't categorise myself as that.

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Post by HM Murdock Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:24 pm

emancipator wrote:HM, I don't recall, but was Djokovic all that popular with the crowds before he became a multi slam winner (circa 2011) and therefore not always/usually expected to win?
As I recall, about as popular as a good-but-not-great #3. Way behind Federer and Nadal. He's picked up more fans with his greater success.

But I don't recall crowds cheering his opponent as much. That's definitely increased post-2011.

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Post by temporary21 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:29 pm

lags72 wrote:
temporary21 wrote:If I may quickly dabble into another sport. Steve Davis in the snooker must be up there for the most unpopular number 1. He was parodied such was the extent people didnt like him

There is indeed a certain similarity in the public's attitude to Djokovic and Steve Davis  - in as much as Davis was hugely respected for his massive talent & quiet efficiency, but could never really be described as a big crowd favourite, in the way that say, contemporaries Alex Higgins or Jimmy White undoubtedly were.

In fairness to Davis (and perhaps another similarity with Djokovic .....shades of his appeals to the crowd at the USO semis) he was not above joining in the fun himself towards the latter stages of his career. Some of you may remember a satirical TV sketch where Steve was discussing his lack of popularity with his own PR manager (who himself didn't think Steve was a particularly exciting player to watch!) The exchanges went something like this :

STEVE : "The thing is, I need some sort of catchy nickname which will look good in headlines"

MANAGER : "What do you mean Steve?"

STEVE : "Well, some of the other top guys have been given middle names by the media and fans. Like Jimmy "Whirlwind" White and Alex "Hurricane" Higgins ..... you know, that sort of thing .....I reckon it would give me a boost"

MANAGER : "Hmm...... so what did you have in mind, Steve?"

STEVE : "Well...... maybe I could be called Steve "Interesting" Davis ......"

MANAGER : "Bit of a problem there, Steve. I mean.... the thing is, you're not interesting, are you ....? In fact you're pretty boring to be honest."

STEVE : "Okay. I guess you're right. How about Steve "Boring-but-would-like-to-be-Interesting" Davis ....."

MANAGER : "Not sure about that Steve. Leave it with me"

Its true that Im not Charlton Heston, but at least im interestin...

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Post by hawkeye Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:30 pm

I like Djokovic. He is a great player even if his style is a bit boring when players other than Roger and Rafa are on the other side of the net. He is also an impressive personality. On paper if you listed his attributes it would be difficult to come up with a more charismatic and interesting sports star. But despite this he will always be compared to two other players who just have something that he doesn't have. Call it star dust if you like king It must be a little frustrating for Djokovic because he's doing everything right but somehow he is less than the sum of his parts and Roger and Rafa are more (and they have a healthy base to start from too).

All this makes me sort of like Djokovic more... and yet I always cheer against him when he plays Roger or Rafa. And credit to him as a quality player I often find myself cheering against him even when he isn't playing Roger and Rafa. I probably like him best when he loses. Sorry Novak rose

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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:35 pm

It Must Be Love wrote:I don't think that's the case for me, I support Nadal because I liked his style of play.
The sort of Nadal fan who would switch to another player if they had emerged first to me is a bit like a fair-weather fan, and I wouldn't categorise myself as that.

You don't 'switch' to another player if that player existed first. Besides, no offence, but you were probably around 8 years old in 2004 when Nadal first appeared on the scene so of course it wasn't an issue for you.

However, like many others you could have been, knowingly or unknowingly, influenced by the popularity of the rivalry and then leaned towards Nadal as your favourite player. That kind of popularity and influence may have lead to many more Djokovic fans if he had had got there first and established a rivalry with Federer.

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Post by HM Murdock Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:40 pm

I thought Novak was excessively peeved about the crowd today.

True, it's poor form to cheer a double fault. But he's been around long enough to know that when a players is pasted in the first set, they will cheer for him in the second. The crowd don't want to see (yet another) drubbing.

Although I did smile at his "autograph".

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Post by It Must Be Love Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:42 pm

emancipator wrote:

You don't 'switch' to another player if that player existed first. Besides, no offence, but you were probably around 8 years old in 2004 when Nadal first appeared on the scene so of course it wasn't an issue for you.
Emanci, I have supported Nadal since I was very young.

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Post by lags72 Sat 15 Nov 2014, 6:58 pm

Jahu wrote:They dont like him much in Serbia either, as he is considered a tax dodger living in Monaco, though hes tryed with a few small shots donations to appease the poor people.

Otherwise, he is probably more fun for a drink then Nadal or Fed.

You're probably right that he would be good for a laugh down the pub. But I do think Rafa would be fun too, especially having seen those recent spoofs on youtube (fake helicopter pilot, golf course incident etc...)

I had no idea that Djoko isn't well liked in Serbia. I had always assumed he would be massively popular in his home country, in fact a real national hero.

Another Number One who never enjoyed wide popularity in his home country was Lleyton Hewitt. And that really is something of an oddity - not least given just how much the sport-loving Aussies tend to adore almost all their home-grown stars.

There was an amusing sketch with Aussie TV comedy guy David Tench discussing Hewitt with Pat Rafter.
Worth a look, less than a minute long .......

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=eZ3_okc4uo0

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Post by laverfan Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:02 pm

"The King is dead" comment has sort of rubbed of negatively on Djokovic. The USO confrontation with the fans did not help his cause either, but he has gone out of his way to endear himself to the fans.

He is also now a father, a bit mellower, and works hard. I like the guy, and what he does/is doing on the court.

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Post by invisiblecoolers Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:06 pm

People are so affectionate towards Fedal that they just can't see anybody else as no.1 , if you ask every individual on the stadium who you dislike/hate Djoko, they would be confused and puzzled for answer and they might even say they actually don't hate him but love cheering the underdog Smile

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Post by Jahu Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:12 pm

lags, when I talk about Djoko, apply a 55% discount immediatly Laugh

He gets enough criticism too, not least because he likes to trumpet the nationalistic card, did not play Serbia Open, which I think now has been dropped from the calendar completly, has been pretty poor donating money, except this year for floods and made a complete joke of himself with sandwiches and a snowtruck during snowstorm of last winter.

Sure he is loved there, he is their bigest sportsman ever, but a small country expects a little more from you when u are that rich and love to pedle the serbian flag on TV.

Been to Belgrade many times, and i can say that people after Djoko, love equaly Fed and Nadal.
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Post by The Special Juan Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:22 pm

temporary21 wrote:If I may quickly dabble into another sport. Steve Davis in the snooker must be up there for the most unpopular number 1. He was parodied such was the extent people didnt like him

I see your Davis and I raise you my Hendry. People don't like winners, especially when they are so damn good they are almost robotic.
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Post by Jahu Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:25 pm

Never liked Hendry, Steve was so soothing.
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Post by Guest Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:34 pm

I hated Steve as he was ginger. Was the worst of the lot until Prince Harry came along. Very Happy

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Post by Jahu Sat 15 Nov 2014, 8:35 pm

I skipped Hendry and went stright to Ronnie Smile
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Post by Haddie-nuff Sat 15 Nov 2014, 10:20 pm

I find it amusing to read what conclusion has been reached with regard to Nadals's popularity or not.  He has ?? how many million fans???. You assume that these are all screaming fan-girls who have no idea about tennis.. oh spare me please.  There are thousands, if not millions of men who like and admire Rafa and there are those of us who purely like his style of play.. Cant you do better than that??

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Post by hawkeye Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:28 pm

emancipator wrote:I think Djokovic has suffered quite a lot as a result of joining the trivalry third.

In fact I reckon if he and Nadal had swapped places and Djokovic had appeared first, and was successful first, thus establishing a rivalry with Federer first, he may have gained a lot more support. Let's face it, some people were desperate for someone to challenge Federer; desperate for anyone to beat Federer.


My theory has always been that if Nadal had arrived first he would have gained a few Federer fans. Sadly for Djokovic I reckon if he had arrived first he would have been disappointed at the way the crowd suddenly started cheering his younger rivals. There are lots of very good players older than FeDal that didn't attract thier attention.

Haddie-nuff wrote:I find it amusing to read what conclusion has been reached with regard to Nadals's popularity or not.  He has ?? how many million fans???. You assume that these are all screaming fan-girls who have no idea about tennis.. oh spare me please.  There are thousands, if not millions of men who like and admire Rafa and there are those of us who purely like his style of play.. Cant you do better than that??

Of course it's not only females who like Rafa. But whats wrong with having a few million screaming "fan-girls" included in your fan base? I bet Djokovic would do anything to add a few screaming "fan-girls" to his. Maybe in his dreams Federer would swap a few of his cardigan wearing, Moet quaffing, Telegraph reading fans for the "fan-girl" type too Very Happy

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Post by JuliusHMarx Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:31 pm

Djokovic seems happy enough with his wife and new-born child. Would he 'do anything' for some fan-girls - swap his family for them perhaps?

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Post by Haddie-nuff Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:34 pm

Nothing but even to assume that all screaming fan-girls no absolutely nothing about tennis is a chauvinistic comment if I've ever  heard one. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Haddie-nuff Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:36 pm

JuliusHMarx wrote:Djokovic seems happy enough with his wife and new-born child. Would he 'do anything' for some fan-girls - swap his family for them perhaps?

No I dont and I dont think Rafa would swap his girl friend either

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Post by bogbrush Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:36 pm

Sadly many of the fangirls are, well, former girls.

to quote one notable such "fangirl", she really should know better.
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Post by Haddie-nuff Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:38 pm

Maybe but the particular fan girl you are speaking of knows her tennis too..

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Post by hawkeye Sat 15 Nov 2014, 11:56 pm

JuliusHMarx wrote:Djokovic seems happy enough with his wife and new-born child. Would he 'do anything' for some fan-girls - swap his family for them perhaps?

Well obviously not Rolling Eyes but I bet he'd be willing to dance, do a few impressions or rip off his shirt Very Happy

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Post by hawkeye Sun 16 Nov 2014, 12:03 am

bogbrush wrote:Sadly many of the fangirls are, well, former girls.

to quote one notable such "fangirl", she really should know better.

Maybe you are one of the Cardigan wearing, Moet quaffing, Telegraph reading Federer fans that I speculated that Federer may dream of replacing with a fan girl? I wouldn't worry it's just speculation. Federer may be quite happy with you and even if he wanted to swap fan-girls can be very picky.

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Post by socal1976 Sun 16 Nov 2014, 5:37 am

Jahu wrote:They dont like him much in Serbia either, as he is considered a tax dodger living in Monaco, though hes tryed with a few small shots donations to appease the poor people.

Otherwise, he is probably more fun for a drink then Nadal or Fed.

Oh wait and Federer choses to live in Dubai, because he loves the sandstorms and 40 plus degree heat or he likes the tax dodge of residing in the emirates. Pretty much every tennis player from Europe has to flee their countries for tax purposes. Even Murray lives in Florida with much better tax rates than Scotland. Gasquet lives in Switzerland, Becker was charged and prosecuted by German tax authorities.

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Post by socal1976 Sun 16 Nov 2014, 5:41 am

Djokovic, comes after two of the most popular champions we have had. I think he does suffer some residual ill will as a result of his past physical ailments and some of the behavior of himself and his camp. But he is a pretty popular guy and most of the fans do like him. They generally cheer for his opponents though that is correct. Probably, a bit of going for the underdog as he has been the favorite in most matches for quite some time.

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Post by Jahu Sun 16 Nov 2014, 7:13 am

Socal, come on, Serbia is no swiss or uk, people are different there and Djoko behaves differently in nationalistic grounds compared to Fed/Murray.

Fed for tax purposes is resident of swiss, Andy of UK, with time spent out of UK to minimize his tax bill, Djoko of Monaco.

Serbia changed the law and made special exception to not tax global income of sportsman, to have their sports people at least seem like they live in Serbia, did not work.

JJ is based in Dubai, Ana in Basel, even Goran at times when world was a better place, got same crap from Croats for his Monaco tax base.
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