Google Down the Line!: Nando credits adidas for development + support, reveals more about Agassi sit down

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Nando credits adidas for development + support, reveals more about Agassi sit down

Fernando Verdasco reached his first Grand Slam semifinal when he defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 7-6 (2), 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 at the Aussie Open. He faces his top seeded compatriot Rafael Nadal for a spot in Sunday's final.

In his post-match presser, the 25-year old gave credit to sponsor adidas for their unrelenting support including the opportunity to train in Las Vegas with Gil Reyes:

I need to say thanks because I didn't say before to adidas. Is because of my brand, no, that I had this chance to be with Gil in Las Vegas. You know, there is a development program for the players of adidas, you know, with Gil Reyes. They help us so much.

Some players, they don't like maybe or they don't want to do it. But me, because I don't have coach, you know, I decide to go there. Also because Agassi was my idol when I was young, I decide that it was, for sure, a good experience, that I will learn so much. So I took that decision.

Right now I'm feeling much better than before. They help me so much. They treat me unbelievable there. You know, I can't wait to go again there to start practicing again.

As I wrote about previously, the adidas-sponsored trip to Las Vegas also allowed Nando to spend some time learning from his childhood idol Andre Agassi:
[We spoke] about a lot of things. It was about the tournaments, how I should organize my year of tournaments. You know, I was asking him, you know, "This tournament, you think I need to play, I don't need to play, I need to practice these weeks, this week no. He was just giving me advices about, you know, what he thinks about all this, about what tournaments I need to play or which weeks I need to practice and be ready for the big tournaments. Also, after, about tactics, no, and about my game, how he thinks that I should play more and take more advantage of my game.

You know, we was speaking for two hours, so we spoke a lot. But he really help me so much. I'm so happy to had that conversation with him.
I guess if you're going to learn about winning, especially in Oz, you might as well speak with a 4-time champ like AA.

I'd be curious to know more about adidas' development program, how it works, and what they offer in terms of support for their ballers and, also, why more of their ballers don't take advantage of it. I bet there are requirements and stipulations that may be viewed as restrictive.

But based on Nando's recent results, I'd say their other ballers should think about jumping onto this bandwagon.

(image via AP)


  1. If Agassi's helping him, I can see why he's winning.

    But...get ready to pack your bags, Nando. Rafa is going to put a world of hurt on you.

  2. Oh god natch.. I so do not want to say anything like that in order not to jinx Rafa.

    *locks mouth, throws away the key*

  3. Nope. Nando worships Rafa like JMDP worships Fed. You saw what happened in that match. If Gilles couldn't take a set, Nando has NO chance of winning this match. None. At. All. I wouldn't say it unless I was sure of it.

  4. Hey Rich,

    I know Ana Ivanovic has made use of the Adidas support program (wait a minute, does it also include a dating service?) and that her ex-coach. . .forgot his name. . .was part of that program. He couldn't sit in her box when she was playing another Adidas sponsored player.

    My question is - how on earth did Nando find the time to date Ana amidst winning DC and training with Gil?

  5. natch - yeah I know. All Spanish players seems to have that respect veering on submission for Rafa. Remember at last year's RG Nico Almagro got one winner past Rafa and he shouted "Yea.. Uno, uno!!"

    He tried though, more than Potro did against Fed.

  6. FF: HA! Yeah she's part of it and worked with Sven Groenefeld as did Nando. Yeah who knows when he flew to Vegas amidst all the Anando action over the off-season. Maybe he has an evil-twin. I mean, I do (somewhere I swear).

    natch/babz: They have total respect for Rafa understandably so. And trying to take him down at a major will be a tall task. He may go down hard (watch it.)

  7. Gil Reyes help as well Querrey from mid of last year and he did very well, so seems that they do a good effect on player. Good for them.

  8. I'm thinking Nando will fight very hard, if only to save face. But his skills are just not good enough, methinks. At least, not yet.

  9. Uvijek: You can't argue with AA's results while working with him and now Nando.

    *stares at string bean arms*

    Where can I sign up?

  10. Awww, Rich, Querrey STILL has string bean arms, and he did okay. He just hasn't buckled down and trained like he wants to be a top tenner.
    Besides, ain't nothin' wrong with string beans, anyway.

    Yes, Nando will do better than JMDP, but he still in for an a$$-whoopin'.
    *gets out popcorn*

  11. Nothin' wrong with plump beans too. *pouts*

    Not. Saying anything. To jinx the bull. *screws eyes shut*

  12. Or plump beans. More cushion for the pushin'. ;)
    I'm here all week, folks.

  13. Natch is on a ROLL, ppl! Watch out, you'll get burrrrrrrrned.

  14. I don't know, guys. AO usually comes up with a surprise finalist... hmmm. I'd much rather for that to be Andy Roddick this year!

  15. I'm thrilled for Nando. Really, anyone who puts in the work, has heart and wants it bad. Go Nando but Rafa is going to be tough.

  16. when ana started working with adidas' player development program, she reached her first final at the french open in '07. she didn't have a coach during the aussie open that year and crashed out in the 3rd rd. she also reached the aussie open final in '08 and won the french open while with the program working with sven. wozniacki is in the program too and so is querrey. i hope nole takes advantage of it too looking at nando's results right now. but what was more instrumental for nando i think was his davis cup win. it really improved his confidence.

  17. The adidas' player development program is an effective program aimed to maximize the talents of adidas sponsored players. It is composed of Sven Groeneveld, and Gil Reyes. A lot of adidas players have tried and benefited from the program particularly Ana Ivanovic who reached the Aussie Open final last year and won the French Open last year.

    It's such an effective program coz adidas players have access to some of the best coaches and trainors in the industry and they don't have to spend a penny from such privilege.

    As of late, many adidas players have notable improvements in their game. Just take the case of, Ivanovic, Wozniacki, Safina, Querrey and now Fernando Verdasco.

    This probably explains why some adidas players have been loyal to the brand because they are not only cashing in but also helping build their game and their careers.


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