40-15

’40-15’

There must be an easier way of making a living. Four hours now, give up you bastard. Don’t you know who I am? You may be the rising star but you’re not going to beat me, not this year. This title’s mine. Two match points now, it won’t be long. I’ll take my time, wipe my brow, look around a bit, own the court. That’s what champions do isn’t it, own the court?

Let the crowd settle, bounce the ball once, twice, straight arm, throw up, watch the ball, watch the ball, boom! Shit, long. OK second serve, bounce the ball once, twice, straight arm, throw up, watch the ball, watch the ball, boom! In this time, return along the line, get to it, get to it, damn! Two years ago, I’d have got that one. God, I’m getting old. How can you be old at 29?

’40-30’

OK, don’t tense up, nearly there. Keep it cool. A few shouts from the crowd, ignore them. They don’t know shit. Let the crowd settle, bounce the ball once, twice, straight arm, throw up, watch the ball, watch the ball, boom! Straight down the middle. Take that baby! Huh, how did he get to that? The crowd’s on their feet, they sense a comeback. Sit down; it’s not going to happen, not today. Maybe next year, though; no the year after. I want that record; not just a champion, the champion. You can wait your turn, pay your dues.

‘Deuce’

Let the crowd settle, bounce the ball once, twice, straight arm, throw up, watch the ball, watch the ball, boom! Applause. Didn’t see that one coming, did you? You’ll learn of course; if you keep your focus, concentrate on your game and not the distractions. It’s so easy to get distracted, believe me. Airport, hotel, practice, match, dinner, practice, match, dinner, practice, match, dinner, airport…see. It’s boring, lonely and there’s a girl called Distraction in every city. Good luck, son. Been there, worn the T-shirt.

‘Advantage Cole’

Let’s get this over with. I’m tired now but I’m not going to let you know that. Never let them know you’re hurting. Let the crowd settle, bounce the ball once, twice, straight arm, throw up, watch the ball, watch the ball, boom!

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