…does it make a sound?

If Jim Courier and Pete Sampras play an exhibition but no one sees…

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…does it actually happen? Kenneth in the (212) points out the surprisingly bare stands at the recent Match of the Modern Masters sponsored by Talon Air.

Yikes. Why was no one watching? Perhaps fans just couldn’t take a Thursday off, and instead chose to watch this exhibition online? For Sampras’ sake, let’s hope it’s the latter; he’s got a few more matches slated through the end of the year. It’s too early in his retirement to already be overexposed.

guga kuerten styles: women's s/s '07

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Ok I found some pieces from the s/s ’07 Guga Kuerten women’s collection, including these bikinis below:

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Buy: As usual, you can visit the Guga Kuerten website to buy any of the clothing.

Enjoy!

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checking in with stefanie and andre

The power coupling of Andre Agassi and Stefanie Graf — I’ll humor her this one time — continues to make the news:

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Posing for Vuitton: I’m so excited that both will appear in the latest Louis Vuitton campaign where “bling is out” and the focus is on LV’s “heritage as a maker of trunks, suitcases and other travel-related items.” The Graf/Agassi ad shows them in a loose embrace in a New York hotel. Other photos show Mikhail Gorbachev riding in a Kruschev-era limousine along the Berlin Wall (photo above) and actress Catherine Deneuve with a Vuitton case in front of a steam locomotive at the Gare d’Austerlitz in Paris. All were shot by Annie Leibovitz. (IHT)

Steffi steps up: I pooped my pants yesterday when I read that Steffi and Justine Henin will be playing in an exhibition match in October to benefit Graf’s charity, Children for Tomorrow. I won’t be going to Mannheim, so someone post it on YouTube, ok?

Their post-tennis business ventures: This Bloomberg story goes over all their major projects, including San Francisco restaurants, furniture lines (with Kreiss), and real estate. The latest? A Fairmont Hotel near their Tamarack Resort in Idaho.

adidas collection – SALE: OTB tips us off about a sale at adidas for its Andre Agassi collection. Check out the goods and tell us what you think.

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short balls: alexandra stevenson should retire, orange county represents, how young is too young?, etc.

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First Roger, now Lleyton: Tennis fans Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale get their tennis fix by arranging a playdate between son Kingston and Lleyton Hewitt‘s daughter Mia. (Telegraph)

The train has made its final stop: Columnist Jerry Magee pleads with Alexandra Stevenson to call it a career and hang up her racquet. (San Diego Union Tribune)

The Fed Cup Chronicles: Down the Line! has been following the buzz sourrounding Sharapova and the Russian Fed Cup team, in case you were wondering.

Murray playing smarter: The one-year anniversary of the partnership between Andy Murray and Brad Gilbert is around the corner, and Tim Henman thinks the marriage has done Andy good. (Telegraph)

Irvinian nabbed by IMG, Nike: Along with being the top seed at this week’s USTA Boys’ 18 National Championships, O.C.’s Michael McClune has a deal with Nike and a contract with IMG. Congrats! (Kalamazoo Gazette)

More O.C.: Villa Park’s Lindsey Nelson entered the qualies at last week’s Bank of the West Classic, losing in the second round. I heard she had a quad injury, so I’m glad to see her playing.

Early bird catching worms?: The Postmen doesn’t agree with the decision to send off five-year-old Jan Silva to a French training academy. Is it ever too early to train a kid that intensely? (USA Today)

They can empty your pockets sooner: The self-serve kiosk used by Polo Ralph Lauren at the U.S. Open and Wimbledon received an award at a Vegas trade show. (source)

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(OT) In architecture, rise and fall: The Burj Dubai is already the tallest skyscraper in the world and it’s not even completely built. In Johannesburg, Ponte City (above) — the southern hemisphere’s tallest residential skyscraper and an excellent example of brutalism — gets a second wind. Also, the Washington Times mourns the demise of sketching as a trade practice.

(OT) Coke’s subtle makeover: In case you didn’t notice

(OT) Adding to things my countrymen — and one country..err woman — are known for: Surely you’ve seen these awesome performances from a jail in Cebu.

(Ponte City photo via Archidose)

catching up with MaliVai Washington

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Retired American MaliVai Washington returns to competitive tennis at the Gibson Guitar Champions Cup. Since retiring in 1999, he has devoted some time to his MaliVai Kid’s Foundation, which will hold its 11th annual fundraising gala this September. Below he talks about joining the Masters tour, his appearance in the 1996 Wimbledon final, and the Davis Cup injury that ended his professional career.

Q: How do you feel about making your Outback Champions Series debut?

MaliVai Washington: Making my debut in the Outback Champions Series will be exciting. It’s a chance to get back out on the court having been away from competitive tennis for several years. The funny thing is that the draw will look just like it did when I was on tour full time. These are the guys I won and lost against my entire career.

Q: You had knee problems at the end of your career stemming from a heroic 1997 (first round) Davis Cup win in Brazil against Gustavo Kuerten. Tell us about that match, what happened to your knee, and how your knee feels now.

MW: Playing Davis Cup for me was always a great honor. Unfortunately, I played just three times in my career. There were a few Hall of Famers named Sampras, Courier, Agassi, and Chang, who where going to be asked to play ahead of me so it wasn’t often that I got the chance to play.

Beating Gustavo in the opening match was one of my top three or four career highlights. A combination of the occasion, being in Brazil in front of a pretty hostile crowd, and playing the opening match, was very special. Finishing the match with a knee injury where I had sheared off a piece of cartilage made it more painful but more satisfying.

Ironically, that was a career highlight but it was also the beginning of the end of my career. I just didn’t know it at the time. Today, my knee feels ok, but I doubt if it will ever be 100 percent. Just the nature of my injury hasn’t allowed me to play as much tennis over the last few years as I’d like and I certainly haven’t competed against guys like this in years so I too am interested to see how my body holds up.

Q: It has been nine years since you retired from the ATP tour. How will it feel to play matches again?

MW: Playing competitive tennis is such an adrenaline rush for me so it will be great to get on the court and compete. I just wish I could do some of the things I use to do on the court well. I can still do those things today, I just can’t do it as often.

Q: You had two great grasscourt achievements in your career: coming back from 1-5 in the fifth to beat Todd Martin in the semis of Wimbledon in ’96 and playing Richard Krajicek in the final. What are your memories of those matches?

MW: At the time, I would have never guessed that (those matches) would be my last ever at Wimbledon; knee injuries and surgeries didn’t allow me to play again. Coming back from 1-5 down in the fifth set against Todd was one of those things you can’t explain. In the course of a year, every player loses a couple matches that they should have probably won, and on the flip side, win a couple matches (they) probably should have lost. The win against Todd was won of those matches. For me it was a great highlight and win against a great player.

Being in the final of a major championship is what you dream about as a kid, but you never dream of getting second place. On that day, the better player won, but those two weeks in London and playing on the final day was the pinnacle of my career.

Q: What are your feelings of Newport and the International Tennis Hall of Fame as a destination?

MW: Newport is such a wonderful city to visit and the Hall of Fame is such a nice venue to have an event. My last trip to Newport was in the summer of 2006 for the Gullikson charity event… I have special memories of the Newport because Mark Stenning, the Newport Tournament Director, gave me my first wild card back in 1989 before I had even turned pro, and he again gave me a wild card into the tournament 10 years later when I was at the end of my career, post-two knee surgeries. Needless to say Newport was very special to my career.

Details: The Gibson Guitar Champions Cup, part of the Champions Tennis Series, will be held August 22-26, 2007 at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, R.I. Featured players in the round-robin tournament include John McEnroe, Pat Cash, Mats Wilander, Wayne Ferreira, Jim Courier, Richard Krajicek, Todd Martin, and Mal Washington. For more information, visit www.tennisfame.com

trophies: indianapolis, umag, austria, stanford, rio, etc.

The trophy gods worked hard to give us some good ones this week:

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In the hotfest over at the Austrian Open in Kitzbuehel, Argentinian Juan Monaco (in adidas) got taken to three sets by Potito Starace (wearing Le Coq Sportif). Bonnie was right: Juan should have been in my top 5. Really, I’ve never noticed a six pack bursting out of a shirt like that…

Pictureless: Italian Francesca Schiavone won her first career title in Bad Gastein, but we are without pictures. Congrats, Francesca!

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In Umag, veteran Carlos Moya tells us not to write him off just yet with his 6-4, 6-2 win over Andrei Pavel. Gap-toothed or not, he’s still hot. And kudos to the tourney organizers for coming up with that offbeat blue trophy.

Other trophies: Stanford, Pan-American Games, and Indianapolis trophies after the cut…

waitaminute: juan monaco

A few notes to start: Vice‘s annual photo issue is out, so make sure to pick up a copy before they disappear. Also, perfect Sunday afternoon = surprisingly potent Chipotle margaritas while window shopping at the Bev Center.

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Did anyone else notice how Juan Monaco was BURSTING out of his adidas kit while playing Potito Starace in today’s Austrian Open final? The world is totally unfair.

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Fashion: I love the silver trim on these shirts (both in red and white). I’ve been trying to look for it online to no avail, so if you have any tips, please send our way (tennisCBH AT gmail DOT com).

Bonus round: More pics of the white shirt, some Monaco training pics, and a screenshot. Enjoy!

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(Austria photos via Getty Images, training photos via sportfiles, and Tenis Pro screen cap via MTF)

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