Friday 10 to 1: Christmas gifts for players
As Christmas Day nears, we’re feeling festive. And what better way to share some of the Christmas cheer than to give presents to some of the world’s top players?
As Christmas Day nears, we’re getting festive here at tennis.com.au. And what better way to share some of the Christmas cheer than to give presents to some of the world’s top players? It serves as a little thank you to them for all the excitement and highlights they have provided us with in 2012, as well as an appropriate gift they can put to good use as the 2013 season approaches.
10. Bikram yoga session for Roger Federer
Always graceful, never ruffled. Roger Federer is a picture of calm and composure on the court, so much so it appears the Swiss great doesn’t even sweat in the heat of battle. It’s amazing, even perhaps a little infuriating as us mere mortals sweat and grind through points at the lowly club level. We feel Roger needs to experience perspiration like the rest of us, and what better way than a Bikram yoga class, where the room is heated to 40 degrees Celcius? Andy Murray swears by it, and at the age of 31, it will also help to keep Federer limber, a plus given he plans to continue playing through until the Rio Olympics in 2016.
9. Ear plugs for Li Na
She may have won through to the Australian Open final in 2011, but who knows how much further Li Na could have gone had her husband not kept her awake with his incessant snoring? This year, we’re giving the Chinese superstar some ear plugs to promote better sleep quality, which could translate to her second Grand Slam title.
8. Toothbrush and floss for Maria Sharapova
The creative brains behind the recently-launched “Sugarpova” candy brand is somewhat of the sweet tooth, having professed her love for baking when she gets some rare time at home between tournaments. To ensure she’s keeping those gorgeous pearly whites from eroding due to copious sugar consumption, we’re placing a toothbrush and dental floss beneath her Christmas tree this year.
7. Macaroons for Novak Djokovic
The Serb is famous for having overhauled his diet, which coincided with his career-best season in 2011, arguably one of the finest seasons in the history of the sport. Part of the change involved cutting out gluten, meaning Djokovic no longer gets to enjoy the pizza, pasta, bread and other carbo-loaded staples he grew up on. Admiring of his dietary discipline and sympathetic of the fact he doesn’t get to indulge every now and then, we thought we would gift him some scrumptious macaroons, which, luckily, are predominantly a gluten-free treat given their use of almond meal.
6. Day spa voucher for Venus Williams
It’s been a rough couple of seasons for the veteran, who in 2011 was diagnosed with the energy-sapping auto-immune condition Sjogren’s syndrome. Although she did well to haul herself back up the rankings – she finished 2012 ranked No.24 – her schedule was nonetheless limited and her health a day-to-day prospect. So, we feel she deserves a trip to a luxurious day spa to rest, rejuvenate and recharge ahead of her assault on the 2013 season.
5. Invisibility cloak for Sam Stosur
She’s talked openly about the pressure she faces when playing on home soil. And when your face is plastered all over billboards, newspapers and TV commercials during the Australian summer of tennis each year, it’s little wonder why. For Sam Stosur, the perfect gift is an invisibility cloak, a little something she can slip on every time she feels the need to escape and gather her thoughts throughout the manic month of January.
4. British comedy DVD for Andy Murray
Not known for his relaxed, easy smile – a journalist even said the Scot’s demeanour in the press conference room after his US Open win that it looked as if he had just suffered a big loss – Andy Murray might benefit from a dose of hilarious British comedy. And the country has pumped out many a classic, including Fawlty Towers, The Young Ones and The Vicar of Dibley, just to name a few. This Christmas we’re sending him a DVD selection to coax a smile or two.
3. Golf clubs for Caroline Wozniacki
Given Wozniacki spends so much time on the golf course with world No.1 golfing boyfriend Rory McIlroy, she could use a set of clubs of her own to put her time to good use. We know she loves riding in the buggy, but this way, she can follow the lead of several other pro tennis players and hone her golf strokes while spending some quality time with her other half.
2. Voltaren for Rafael Nadal
Voltaren Emulgel, a topical anti-inflammatory gel from pharmaceutical company Novartis, is the perfect gift for a certain Spaniard making his long awaited return to the courts after a six-month battle with chronic knee tendonitis.
1. Bug spray for Serena Williams
Serena struggled with Melbourne’s insect population during her first round victory over Tamira Paszek at Australian Open 2012. “Bugs fell on my back twice,” she reported. “I hate bugs more than you can imagine. I hate bugs. Like, they kept jumping on me. I just … Yuck. So I’m going to request not to play at night anymore because I hate bugs.” Given that Serena is a big drawcard, there’s a good chance that she may find herself in the evening timeslot at the 2013 tournament next month, so we’re sending her a can of bug spray.