The Tennis Abstract Podcast

A weekly Sports, Recreation and Professional podcast
Good podcast? Give it some love!

Episodes of The Tennis Abstract Podcast

Gerry Marzorati is a contributor to The New Yorker and Racquet magazine, and he's the author of the new book Seeing Serena, which follows Serena Williams throughout the 2019 season as she seeks her first grand slam title as a mother. We talk ab
A digressive novel centered on a 16th-century real tennis match inspires a discussion that strays far afield from the contents of the book itself. Carl Bialik and I get into the advantages and difficulties of writing blow-by-blow descriptions o
How much do we need to revise our assessment of Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal after their early losses in Monte Carlo this year? Carl Bialik and I discuss the week that was in the principality from many angles, starting with those two key ups
Ashe's 1993 memoir gives us a chance to get inside the mind of one of the most important figures in tennis history. He was the first African American man to rise to the top of the tennis world, played a leading role in the professionalization o
Carl Bialik joins me for a recap of the Miami Open, with a particular focus on the Italian teenager who reached the final there. Sinner has a relatively weak first serve, but seems to do everything else right. We talk about how to balance what
Katrina Adams's new book is called Own the Arena: Getting Ahead, Making a Difference, and Succeeding as the Only One. As a former player, coach, and commentator, and as the first African American to serve as president of the USTA, she has a uni
Lorenzo Musetti is only the latest of many teens and early 20-somethings to shake things up on the ATP tour. Erik Jonsson (@erktennis) is a longtime Challenger and prospect watcher, and he shares his thoughts on Musetti, Aslan Karatsev, Jannik
Larry's new book is called Fans: How Watching Sports Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Understanding, and this episode dives into exactly that argument. We talk about how sports are like religion... and also like the Grateful Dead, whether
Carl and I celebrate our milestone 100th episode with the mailbag to end all mailbags--75 minutes worth of questions, many posed by our loyal listeners, covering everything from our favorite players and venues to the future of the sport several
Julie is the author of the new book Sidelined: Sports, Culture, and Being a Woman in America, which comes out on Tuesday. We talk about the forces that keep sports media from holding stars, teams, and leagues accountable, and the ongoing strugg
Carl and I discuss the second pick of the Tennis Abstract book club, a 1960s novel that didn't turn out to have much tennis in it at all. We talk about whether the brief bits of tennis in the book swing above their weight, why Updike would have
This week's guest is Matt Futterman, reporter for the New York Times and author of Running to the Edge, who spent 15 days alone in hotel quarantine so that he could cover the Australian Open. We talk about his two weeks of isolation and what is
I am joined by Dave Seminara, author of the entertaining new book Footsteps of Federer: A Fan's Pilgrimage Across 7 Swiss Cantons in 10 Acts. We talk about how Roger Federer is typically Swiss (and how he is not), how his Swiss admirers differ
I welcome Joe Posnanski, senior writer at The Athletic, for a wide-ranging conversation starting with a discussion of Djokovic's and Osaka's wins at the Australian Open. He talks about what might be stopping the younger generation of men from d
Carl and I use the fitness sagas of Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal as a springboard to talk about injury management--the way in which players handle constant nagging injuries, whether that means adapting their tactics, changing their pace, rea
Jeff chats with Bill Connelly, an ESPN college football writer who dug into Match Charting Project data this week to write about the complex mastery of Novak Djokovic. Bill explains how Djokovic tactically differs from the competition, how his
Carl and I dig into the opportunity generated by the Covid-19 pandemic to study natural experiments in sports. Many of the things we used to take for granted--stadiums full of fans, weekly travel schedules, consistent training opportunities--ha
Carl and I recap the podcast's first book club selection, Gordon Forbes's well-regarded 1978 memoir of 1950s and 1960s amateur tennis. We talk about what we learned about pre-Open Era tennis, what set Rod Laver apart from his peers, how Forbes
Jeff and Carl welcome guest Joshua Robinson of the Wall Street Journal, co-author of The Club: How the English Premier League Became the Wildest, Richest, Most Disruptive Force in Sports. We run the gamut of Covid-in-sports topics, including th
Carl flips the script and interviews Jeff this week on his recent efforts to add pre-Open Era women's tennis data to Tennis Abstract. High-level tennis did not begin in 1968 with the introduction of Open tennis, but official statistical records
Jeff welcomes guest Sasha Abramsky, author of the book Little Wonder: The Fabulous Story of Lottie Dod, the World's First Female Sports Superstar. Our wide-ranging conversation covers many aspects of the life and times of this 19th century supe
Jeff interviews David Berry, veteran documentarian and author of A People's History of Tennis. The conversation, like his book, spans the entire history of tennis, with a particular focus on the ways in which the sport isn't conservative at all
Jeff and Carl report back after watching the new Netflix documentary, Guillermo Vilas: Settling the Score. The Argentine star was a multi-slam winner in the 1970s, yet he never reached the top of the ranking list ... or did he? The film covers
Jeff welcomes guest Steven Blush, author of the recent book Bustin' Balls: World Team Tennis 1974-78: Pro Sports, Pop Culture, and Progressive Politics. We talk about how drastically WTT has changed from the early days, the crucial importance o
Jeff and Carl celebrate the final match of the ATP season, the Tour Finals championship match between Daniil Medvedev and Dominic Thiem. We discuss Medvedev's tactical savvy and physical versaility, along with over- and under-rated parts of Thi
Rate Podcast
Do you host or manage this podcast?
Claim and edit this page to your liking.
Are we missing an episode or update?
Use this to check the RSS feed immediately.