short balls: more u.s. open bits



Novak makes it: As I’ve said before, you know you’ve made it big when make a regular appearance in the pages of the New York Times. That, and when you get your own Towleroad sportrait. Congrats, Nole!

Wertheim’s list: Of Jon Wertheim’s 50 post-Open notes, three stand out:

  • “I saw one player brandishing a book during this event and it was….Janko Tipsarevic.
  • “She didn’t get the fanfare of Justin Gimelstob (much less Tim Henman) but a tip of the cap to Corina Morariu, who retired quietly after her last match. One of those people who make the tennis firmament a more pleasant place. Same for Paola Suarez and Nicole Pratt, who also played their final Open.” Which is sad, because I wanted to see Lindsay Davenport play doubles with Morariu.
  • Roger Federer‘s Nike deal is expiring soon. Stay tuned for some drama on this one.” So, is this what Rick Vach was talking about last week?

On a roll: Our buddy Nick (AIPT) writes this piece for Sportingo wondering why women don’t produce great tennis in the second week of the Slams. Go read it and comment!

Nick — I don’t quite agree with the gripe. First, there were many tight three-setters on the women’s side (Jankovic-Venus, Henin-Serena, and Henin-Venus all come to mind). These matches didn’t all happen in the second week (unfortunately) because of that top-heavy draw. But even if the seedings held, there were many players seeded lower than they should’ve been, turning them into dark horses. (If they seeded a la Wimbledon, the second week at the Open might have turned out differently.)

On the flip side of this subjective seeding is rewarding a seed with what they’ve done in the last 52 weeks. If they’re rusty from injury, they get picked off in the early rounds anyway. And then the tourney’s left with a hot lower-ranked girls (the Radwanskas of the world) who might end up deer-in-headlights in the final. They tighten up and get steamrolled 1 and 1.

So if you fix the schedule (to prevent injury) and get more flexible with the seeding, it’ll get better.

Living in my bubble: Here I go thinking that the final between Federer and Djokovic was watched by everyone (the world stopped for a few hours, didn’t it?). Apparently, this was not the case.

Sister, sister: While we’re on the subject, I spoke to a couple of people who were sad the Williams sisters didn’t end up on different halves, which could’ve meant a Williams final. uhm, what? Ratings might have been better, but the quality of play would have sucked. They’re likely to keep playing awkward, error-filled matches against each other for the rest of their lives. Let’s dream about other rivalries, ok?

(OT) Happy Birthday, A Train!: It turned 75, and the MTA rolled out the rattan. Fun!

Comments

  1. I like that you disagree Erwin! Your points are well taken, but if you can only point out three matches out of the entire tournament that were that exciting (and I don’t think the Serena-Henin match was very high quality tennis), then I still think the women are suffering…

  2. Henin vs. Serena and Henin vs. Venus were not three-setters. Tight first-set tiebreaks, but 1 and 4 in the second sets respectively. Even so, I don’t think women’s tennis is so poorly off either. If Venus and Serena will climb into the Top 5, we won’t have this Week 1 top-heavy draw. (Serena herself stays top-heavy enough, you know, with those titles of hers.)

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