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Pon-De-Rock a hit

Barry Alleyne

Pon-De-Rock a hit

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Barbadians lapped up international tennis at its finest earlier today, even if they had to wait over an hour to get their money’s worth.
The 2011 version of Tennis-Pon-De-Rock brought out a reasonable crowd to the indoor gym of the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex, when world -ranked stars Gael Monfils of France, and John Isner of the United States showcased their immense skills.
The pair played Barbados’ own stars, Davis Cup team-mates Haydn Lewis and Darian King in a special doubles exhibition match that had its share of thrills, skills and spills, before Isner and Monfils earned 3-2 win via the tie-break route.
Monfils, his wiry locks flapping all over his face, and Isner, with his trademark white baseball cap and powerful serves, produced numerous shots which showed why both have moved up the ATP rankings in 2011.
But Lewis and King were in no way overshadowed, as they kept the fans involved with some heavy shot making.
Monfils, ever the showman, produced the two best shot of the match, a stunning between-the-legs half-volley at the net, and a between-the-legs return from the baseline.
The Frenchman also left the crowd in stitches when he banged a serve at over 100 miles per hour past King, only for it to be called a fault. “Challenge” Monfils screamed, knowing full-well the electronic scoreboard wasn’t even turned on.
Monfils then jokinly walked off the court as Isner served for the match. Isner, all six foot, ten inches ad advertised, duly served up the ace to close out the match.
It was all part of the fun and games of exhibition tennis.