trophy watch: a diamond racket

Dear Istanbul Open,

Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, I know. But if you wanted a special trophy, couldn’t you have encrusted something else in diamonds?

Even your longevity gimmick isn’t new: the folks at the Proximus Games has the win-three-get- one-really-expensive-tennis-racquet-free deal covered.

How about bedazzling a tennis ball? A dampener? A cap? Wait. Someone’s done the cap already, too.

You’re on the right track with trying to differentiate from the pack, though. We really like that.

with love,

Tennis Served Fresh

(via tennis idols)

tattoo (and piercings!) watch: janko tipsarevic

(Editor Update: Our tattoo watch lives on as part of our duties at Tennis Now, which we took on in July 2012. Check us out there.)

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The oft-spectacled Serbian Janko Tipsarevic has a bunch of tattoos. Most notable is a quote from Dostoevsky’s The Idiot — “Beauty will save the world.” — on his left arm, inked in Japanese. (He thought about getting it done in Russian, but it didn’t look as good.)

The other tattooed parts: his right arm, his back.

And let’s not forget his piercings: he has a labret and a barbell in the right brow.

FURTHER READING: The Guardian‘s Robert Kitson wrote this poetic article about Janko losing to Andy Roddick in the first round of last year’s Wimbledon.

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From left to right: mug shot, right arm, left arm, brow

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who will fill clijsters' shoes at fila? + "settantatre" collection

Sport Brands International Ltd. sold Fila USA to Fila Korea, Ltd. for $400 million one month ago, finally succumbing to the Sisyphusian task of rebuilding the sports brand into a legitimate competitor of Nike, Reebok, and the other big boys.

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Which isn’t to say that Fila Korea needs to start at square one. They have some momentum from last fall’s launch of the Settantatre collection — that’s “1973” in Italian — which coincided with New York Fashion Week. Much like Puma’s French 77 line, Fila reissued their greatest hits from the era of Borg and Vilas, but with a limited edition run of 500 pieces per item.

SHOP: The goods are still available for sale at this website.

This change in ownership also comes at a time when one of Fila’s highest profile athletes, Kim Clijsters, has announced her immediate retirement from tennis. CEO Jon Epstein should think long and hard about who will fill this gaping hole in their on-court sponsorship roster. They need a player who can summon that retro je ne sais quoi. Perhaps Tommy Robredo? Elena Dementieva? Paul Henri-Mathieu? (Whom should Fila consider? Tell us.)

Which isn’t to say that Fila should write off Kimmy’s marketability. In fact, that isn’t part of the strategy: Lauren Mallon, Fila’s Global Marketing Manager, confirms with Tennis Served Fresh that they have no plans to end their relationship with Kim.

(via a new men’s fashion love, the all IC blog)

a train wreck in istanbul

…but it didn’t involve the Orient Express (which might go the way of the Western Union telegram after June, fyi).

It looks like some memos got lost in the mail, because I’m pretty sure that fashion icons Maria Sharapova and Venus Williams would never show up for an Istanbul Cup photo opp — complete with traditional Ottoman garb — looking like amateurs.

Masha (left) came overdressed with her slacks and platform sandals, and Venus (middle) wore white socks and shoes. WHAT?!

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Elena Dementieva (right) either lucked out or dressed smart. Her silver pumps matched her outfit. Kudos.

puma gv hall of fame edition – on sale

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Just a quick note that the Puma GV Hall of Fame Edition sneaker is now for sale, rounding out the company’s Guillermo Vilas-inspired campaign as of late.

And in case you’re wondering: that is Vilas’ mug shot on shoe’s tongue. Such subtle vanity! (What do you think of the shoes? Tell us.)

Of course I can’t figure out where to buy them. If you’re desperate, get them from sneakersnstuff (a Swedish merchant). If you have a stateside vendor, write me back with the info: TennisCBH AT Gmail DOT com.

(photos via Puma Talk)

fashion: safin and haas in old-school white, nike’s mcenroe shirt, and dressing like a dandy

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You can even sew your own underwear: Patterns From the Past, a blog specializing in historical dress pattern research, devotes a whole post to tennis wear of yore. Some kits even have instructions for making visors and skivvies.

safin-haas-hamburg.jpgHamburg, revisited: Have you seen these vid clips of Tommy Haas and Marat Safin in old-school tennis whites, playing in an exhibition for the Hamburg Masters? (It commemorated the tourney turning 100 last year.) Photos here, and video here and here.

Dressing like a dandy: Feeling blah about your wardrobe? Take inspiration from these three members of London’s fashion avant-garde, as interviewed by the Times. It’s a good read.

spring2007-nike-mcenroe.jpgNike does McEnroe: Nike releases this psychedelic John McEnroe Icon T-Shirt (left) for Summer 2007. It’s on cotton with a glossy ink screen print. ($30; Midwest Sports. BUY IT HERE.)

rome’s fashion highlights: davydenko and serena

Although many players were rockin’ the pink and purple this week (including Patty Schnyder and Svetlana Kuznetsova), it was Serena Williams who ran away with it, combining both colors in her Nike outfit. She even mixed it up with different accessories: a cap one day, and different colored headbands for the other two matches:

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(What do you think of Serena’s ensemble? Tell us.)

Meanwhile, Russian Nikolay Davydenko continues his love affair with clothier Airness, who has showered him with variations on his current uniform. We saw four versions in three color ways just this week — red, orange, and baby blue. Which means he had more costume changes than Serena:

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a weak week for trophies

So we’re a third done with the year and still no tourney has come close to matching what Masters Series Paris handed out to Davydenko last year. Who’s going to step up to the plate?

ATP: World No. 1 Roger Federer had to fight tooth and nail to overcome Clay No. 1 Rafael Nadal this week in Hamburg, and all he got was this lousy doorstop:

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(By the way, what is going on with Federer’s suspender shirt? I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Wimbledon. Nike needs to bring it.)

And the Bryan brothers get some plates in their win over Paul Hanley and Kevin Ullyett:

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Seniors: The Champions Cup folks are pretty much stuck on the ho-hum crystal vase. The tour handed it out again to Pete Sampras, this time in his win over Todd Martin in Athens:

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That’s Todd, above, speaking to the crowd.

SEWTA: Masters Series Rome, this week hosting the ladies, awarded Jelena Jankovic her third title for 2007 — a tour best — after beating Svetlana Kuznetsova 7-5, 6-1. Jelena received a trophy similar to the one Nadal picked up the week prior.

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Prince Albert of Monaco presented the trophy to Jelena.

(photos via Yahoo! Tennis, except for Jelena’s photo with the Masters Series Rome Cup, which is via the tournament website)