Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Leconte - Refreshing at first, but eventually annoying

Henri Leconte - former World No. 5 and French Open finalist in 1988 - was one of the commentators at the Australian Open last night. He was on during the match between Jo Wilfred Tsonga (Fra) and Nicloas Almagro (Esp).

I found his performance... Gallic, for lack of a better word.

A highly excited and emotional bit of commentating, with an unabashed bias towards the Frenchman. Some gems:
  • "I'm sorry to bother you, but do you have any ball?.. Ello, ello, we are out of balls!"
  • "AAAAHHHH" (in a high pitched voice), followed by "AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH" (in a more manly one)
  • "Come on Jooooooo, come on... YEAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!"
  • And, for almost every point: "AHNBILEEVABULL!"

    "NOOOOOOOOO!" Leconte screams in anguish as Almagro wins a point

It was nice to have someone so passionate in the commentary box, with such free flowing, off the cuff and breezy observations on the match. A welcome change, for a bit, from the hushed-voice snooze inducers some of the matches have seen. It was like having a Mexican football commentator in the box.

But the fact that he was practically yelling every time he spoke, coupled with his inability to be fair and objective to both players and use adjectives apart from AHNBILEEVABULL made him pretty annoying beyond a point.


Anonymous said...

henri leconte is a very bad commentator, period! It would be great if he could be more professional especially during an important match. How can a viewer concentrate on the match when he makes silly jokes not even related to tennis? His laugh is irritating and he should talk about the match that is going on rather than rambling about some other nonsense. Channel seven might as well not put any commentary as there's nothing much of substance coming out of Henri. Channel seven should seriously consider firing him for his unprofessionalism in commentating.

Kath Lockett said...

I thought he was wonderful!

Such a change from Sandy Roberts and Tracy Austin. I felt like he was in my lounge room, sitting alongside us, having a beer and enjoying the game. I love him!

eda said...
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Nandini Vishwanath said...

I just am upset that Eda is more consistent than me when it comes to commenting here. *sniff*

AC said...

He knew he was off the cuff and borderline, and didn't care who knew it! Which has its own kind of charm, I suppose. He was fun during the doubles games though - he didn't give a damn about the match, rambling on instead about TV shows!

Dion Pritchard said...

I can appreciate Henri's passion and his bias doesn't really bother me too much (Aussie's do it too albeit more subtly), but he adds very little in terms of insight into the game and his commentary is naught more than making shallow observations and yelling and screaming. You may as well mic up someone from the crowd. I feel sorry for Henri's fellow commentary team who clearly try to elicit critical conversations from Henri to no avail. His charm has certainly worn off and now he's just a distraction...