It is sad to see Agassi pull out of this year's Wimbledon. Of course, he was not expected to win the championships. But it makes the event lose some of its colour. In an earlier blog I mentioned how Agassi is finally feeling the effects of time.
I was never a fan of Agassi. I grew up with Becker. It hurt me most when the German lost to Agassi at Wimbledon. That year the American won the championships. In that time no one won Wimbledon without seeing off the challenge posed by Becker. The second time Agassi angered me was during a U.S. Open match up with our own Leander. That day the American was at the receiving end for a set and a half. Then Agassi complained about the grunting of Paes and there was a remarkable turnaround. Agassi won in four sets. However, in the last few years I have become a fan.
There is no denying the talent that is possessed by Agassi. He put up a grand show at the Australian before being dismantled ruthlessly by Federer. I think the slide down the slope started with that defeat. He seems to have lost his hunger and with the body refusing to cooperate, Agassi might call it a day.
I like to quote from Amrit Mathur writing in 'The Sportstar'(June 11, 2005) albeit in a different context. “Watching the slide is sad. We want our heroes to remain heroes not become support players doing insignificant side roles. That is why watching Agassi lose a first round match is painful. Similarly, seeing a great performer lowered to mediocrity, a Mercedes shrunk to the size of a Maruti 800, is equally soul-searching. But, like it or not, nobody can arrest the march of time and nature(like kanoon) takes its course. In sport, what is outstanding today has perforce to become ordinary tomorrow, the greats and legends pass into record books and exciting new talent rises to the top.”