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Beyond the Baseline

Daily Bagel: Dear 12-year-old Andy Murray...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFBM44uBFTU

The Daily Bagel is your dose of the interesting reporting, writing and quipping from around the Internet.

• Video: Li Na's press conference after her second round match, which she won 6-2, 1-6, 6-0 over Simona Halep, is a fun watch. "Welcome to the crazy world of women's tennis."

• Andy Murray writes a letter to his 12-year old self.

Dear Andy,

There's no stopping what you're about to do. I can still feel your veins throbbing and you gripping the racket so hard that your knuckles burn. And I can feel you letting the racket go with everything you have.

Even if I could stop you, I wouldn't. You need to see that racket fly through the air in Craiglockhart -- fly for what seems like forever, until it lands by the umpire's chair and slides under the fence, out of reach. You need to feel sick about getting thrown out of a Scottish junior championship that you should've won.

There will be this thing called YouTube, Andy. And when you're my age, you'll use it to look back on your first pro appearance at Wimbledon. It will take you another six years, but when you get there, you'll be skipping around the court wearing such a big smile that your face almost cracks. That's when you'll realize you love this game too much to let something as childish as anger get in your way.

• Greg Garber for ESPN wonders if Roger Federer or Rafael Nadal will ever see Wimbledon glory again.

Yes, Andre Agassi won the Australian Open at the age of 32. Indeed, Tommy Haas is playing some terrific tennis at the age of 35. But both of them missed significant portions of several seasons over the years. As a result, they both had physical and emotional reserves that Federer -- with the draining effort of reaching a record 36 consecutive major quarterfinals -- already may have exhausted. In retrospect, one suspects, history will show his last, Sampras-like push occurred here a year ago.

• Ernests Gulbis is perfectly fine with Grand Slams remaining a best-of-five for the men.

“Grand Slam is Grand Slam,” he said. “You don’t need easy way to win it. If you can’t make it, you can’t make it. Sorry. Stay at home and do something else. Grand Slam should be five sets, blood, fight five sets all the way until the end, until somebody is dead.”

• The Changeover collects the best GIFs from Day 4 at Wimbledon.

• Michael Llodra retired from his second-round singles match, then took the court for his doubles match and won when their opponents retired. He got slammed to the third-degree from the Wimbledon press corp for his decision to retire in singles.

• IBM's Slamtracker, a feature on the Wimbledon website, is absolutely quizzical. It features a "postitive sentiment" statistic that has left tennis fans (including myself) in stitches.

• Non-tennis: Inside the Skee-Ball Super Bowl.
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