InDay: An Inside Look at LinkedIn’s First WimbledIn Championship
November 16, 2011
Ed. note: We held our 1st WimbledIn Tennis Championship at our last InDay. Given the curiosity around the event, here's a lighter take on it from our very own in-house sportscaster Michael. Check back tomorrow for regular programming.
The crowd arrived early under the bright blue sky to enjoy the berries and cream along with the mimosas that set the tone for a thrilling match between the last men standing from a grueling summer long tournament, Ryan Roslansky and Steve Cadigan. The mood of the two opponents was light-hearted and witty, just what you would expect from the two pros.
The first set hinged on an unforced Cadigan error that allowed Roslansky to battle back from 15-40 to break Cadigan's serve to go up 4-3, the only break of the first set. Both players exhibited the skills that carried through the rigorous tournament that WimbledIn is famous for. Cadigan’s powerful serves and mind-blowing forehands were exchanged for Roslansky's finesse and incredible passing shots.
The second set resembled the first, save the break. Neither player could break the other, and so it went as such until the set was even at 6-6. It was in the 2nd set tie-break, leading 5-4 that Cadigan earned a point on one of the most thrilling rallies in this year's tournament.
When Roslansky stretched to get what appeared to be a sure Cadigan winner it set off a sequence that one would have to see to believe. Ryan's desperate stretch, where his racket seemed to extend eternally from his arm, sent the ball high in the air. Cadigan lined up the slam only to be thwarted by Ryan's self-defense return, leaving the ball to hit the top of the net, dropping delicately to the ground and most certainly to bounce a second time when Cadigan's full out dive sent the ball back over the net. Not to be outdone Ryan firmly returned the ball down the sideline only to have Cadigan take the impossible shot while diving headlong into the sun and mimosa-drenched front row sending the ball back over the net. Cadigan and Roslansky were now tied at 1 set each.
As the 3rd set began, the talk in the crowd was that the longer the match goes the more it favors Cadigan. The pre-game chatter in the stands about Roslansky's training habits reappeared as the 3rd set approached and was the main factor in how mid-match wagers were being placed. What no one could have imagined was the grit and determination that both men displayed as they battled for the coveted WimbledIn plate.
The heat began to take its toll on Roslansky as he fell victim to severe leg cramps. The injury time benefitted both players as they kept digging deeper to find the energy to continue. The one constant of the match was each players consistent serves. Breaks were hard to come by, which led us deep into the 3rd set and an 8-8 tie. It was then that the tide turned as Roslansky was able to display his fancy footwork and pinpoint placement to finally break Cadigan and take a 9-8 lead. During Roslansky's serve Cadigan staved off 3 matchpoints but when Cadigan returned a Roslansky serve into the net, and followed that with a beautiful forehand blaster that just went wide, the match and glory belonged solely to the humble and gracious champion, Ryan Roslansky.