Henman stops Mark at round 4 at Wimbledon

June 29, 2004: At his post-match press conference Mark made a passing apology to the kids who might have heard his obscenities, but he stands behind the tirade itself. The ATP fined him US $1500 for the outburst. Numerous photos and articles added.

June 28, 2004: Unfortunately Mark’s run at Wimbledon was derailed by Henman 2-6, 5-7, 7-6 (7-3), 6-7 (5-7). Henman practically owned the first two sets, but Mark stormed back in the third, only to lose his composure and swear at the chair over the call of a Henman ace. He was given a warning for audible obscenity – not your typical Philippoussis behavior. Mark rallied again in the 4th and even broke Heman when he was serving for the match, but it was too good from Henman who won in another tie-break. Media update to follow.

June 27, 2004: It’s that old Wimbledon magic working for Mark again as he advanced to the 4th round with a 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7-4), 7-5 win over Gonzalez. And with another round came an even higher ace count – 27. But Mark’s resurgence game will face a real challenge when he faces Henman for a spot in the quarters. Because of the rain delays Mark and Tim will play tomorrow on Centre Court.

June 26, 2004: Today was a another total wash-out at Wimbledon with no tennis being played. So for only the third time, tennis will be played on the middle Sunday. Mark is scheduled for second match of the day on Court 2.

June 25, 2004: Down goes Verkerk 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), 7-5 and it’s back-to-back wins for Mark – something I’ve been unable to type for months! Mark struggled a bit in the first set, being broken on his first game and unable to find a good rhythm, but he settled down and played some good tennis in the next three sets to win the match. He was even broken at the end of the fourth, but didn’t let it rattle him and isntead broke right back. Match total of 24 aces. His next opponent will be Gonzalez, against whom he lost a tight battle at the BDCC last week. Also there’s a nice photo that shows some detail on Mark’s new clothing line. The white shirt he’s wearing has lime green piping on the seams and the MP logo is in lime and yellow.

June 22, 2004 pm: CORRECTION: Today Mark won his match against Christophe Rochus, not his younger brother Olivier. It was Olivier who started Mark’s horrid run with his win over Mark at the Australian Open, so it’s sort of fitting that Mark takes revenge on his brother. This update includes several articles and photos from Wimbledon.

June 22, 2004: Wimbledon is under way and Mark started off with a nice win over Oliver Rochus of Belgium, 6-3, 6-4, 6-2. It took Mark about a set and a half to settle into his serve and put the brakes on some unforced errors and double faults. He did serve an impressive 22 aces. His next opponent will be the winner of the Verkerk / Davydenko match. Media update to come later today. Also

The Boodles & Dunthorne gives Mark some match play on grass

June 21, 2004 A final update on the BDCC, Mark played his final match against countryman Todd Reid and won in straight sets 6-3, 6-3.

June 18, 2004: Mark had today off but will return to court tomorrow to play Massu at the BDCC. At Wimbledon Mark’s first opponent will be Rochus of Belgium, whom Mark lost to earlier this year in Dubai. Several articles added – I recommend “We love you, we love you not…” as it’s an excellent snapshot of Philippoussis.

June 17, 2004: Mark played Gonzales in the first round robin of the Boodles and Dunthorne Champions Challenge yesterday, however it was another loss: 7-5, 5-7, 6-7 (1-7). What’s tough about Mark’s recent losses is that they’ve been very close – a point here or there makes all the difference. Next Mark was due to play Moya today but Moya withdrew to the flu so Mark played against Lee Childs (an upcoming English player ranked 262) and finally got that winning feeling 6-3, 6-1. . On the Wimbledon front, Mark has been seeded 11th for the tournament, which puts him in the top of the bottom half of the draw. Fellow seeds in his quarter include Henman (5), Robredo (20), and Nalbandian (4). (Thanks to Judith for the BDCC info!)

June 15, 2004: The Boodles & Dunthorne Champions Challenge starts tomorrow and while it’s only an exhibition, it is a good chance for some grass matches against some of the top players. Unfortunately they don’t always post their results so if any Londoners see the results posted locally, please let us know! And while Mark hasn’t been playing well lately, there is hope for the future. His current trainer Brett Stephens has said that the results of his work with Mark won’t really show til January. They plan to spend the limited off-season doing some heavy duty training in Australia, something Mark has never done before. But Brett says that he has been working with Mark and he will be ready and physically fit for Wimbledon.

Mark flounders on grass at Queens

June 8, 2004 pm: Mark and Lleyton pulled out of doubles today at Queens, immediately after Mark’s loss – no word as to why though. Mark fans can find some hope though – he lost first round at Queens last year as well. On the fashion front, Mark debuted some of his new clothing line at Queens. The outfit was white with a steel blue pattern down the left side of the shirt and shorts. My guess is that some sort of marketing deal still exists with Fila as he was wearing their sneakers, which actually had the same steel blue coloring. There are some nice photos in the Photos section showing the complete outfit.

June 8, 2004: Just where has the Mark of 2003 gone? In the opening round at Queen’s Club, playing someone who was ranked 866 and in his first ever ATP tour event, Mark lost. For the player who ran all the way to the Wimbledon final just one year ago, this is not a good start to the grass season. As to how he played, I give you this from The Age: “In what, on paper, was probably the worst defeat of his career, the Australian was scratchy from the start, serving three double-faults to lose serve in the fifth game, missing simple volleys, dumping overheads into the net and generally looking ill-equipped for the short grasscourt season.” Not the way to start your grass court season, but at least he still has doubles this afternoon with Hewitt.

June 6, 2004: The draw has been released for Queens/Stella Artois and Mark, seeded 9th, will face qualifier Ian Flanagan of Great Britain in the opening round on Tuesday. Trouble looms almost instantly though with a potential second round match with Ivanisevic. Mark is also entered in the doubles with Hewitt and they’ll face off against Gambill and Hill in their first match.

Mark launches MP clothing line

Mark the fashion designer! There’s finally an explanation for Mark no longer wearing Fila apparels. Mark has been working on his own clothing line called “MP” and will be debuting the first pieces at Wimbledon. The line is co-designed by fellow Australian Bruno Schiavi and is expected to launch in early 2005. The clothing will feature a sun logo and should be rather unique – he was inspired by streetwear and the colors are lime green, burnt orange, blue and red (well at least the future ones, obviously the Wimbledon line will be white). The good news is that Mark told The Sunday Telegraph that he has four more years of tennis ahead of him!