short balls: french’s franny folly


Can you give that back please? It wasn’t enough that Francesca Schiavone lost the women’s final at Roland Garros on Saturday — the tourney had one last snub for her: they gave her the wrong trophy. Schiavone was handed the small replica (which the winner is given to take home) of the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen while her actual runner’s up plate (see it just behind her right hip), sat on the table behind her. Later in the ceremony officials fixed this little gaffe.

An anniversary, nonetheless. Did you miss this on Sunday? It was the 30th anniversary of the Center for Disease Control first publishing a report on a mysterious epidemic of what we would come to know as the AIDS virus. To see a good round up of what took place to ring in this grim date marker, head to Towleroad.

Tennis tube. How’s this for encouraging? The Rafael Nadal-Roger Federer final at the French Open received its highest US TV ratings in 12 years. While the women’s final tied its number from last year, Nadal-Federer were way up over Nadal-Robin Soderling last year. Who played in that 1999 final that got such high ratings? Oh right, that’d be Andre Agassi.

Bjorn a champ?
Below, American Bjorn Fratangelo (yes, he was named after Borg) sits in disbelief after winning the boys’ singles title on Sunday in Paris. The last American teen to win this junior title? John McEnroe in 1977. Seems like you’ve got some good ties, BF! Oh, and for good measure: Bjorn beat Dominic Thiem of Austria, 3-6 6-3 8-6.

(Images via Getty)

practice makes perfect: novak djokovic

Nole switched to his French Open kit during the warm-up tourneys leading to the year’s second major, so no need to rehash (here it is, in case ya need a refresher). So instead, here’s a few looks at his practice gear.

BTW: Nole has dropped only one set (to del Potro) in his run to the semis, which included a retirement from Victor Hanescu and a walkover against Fognini (who injured himself in that marathon vs. Montanes). Djokovic will play Roger Federer tomorrow.

Too much red! Aside from this olive green tee, a Stepanek-esque polo/shirt ensemble after the cut…

flashback: stan the man

Gettin’ down: Stanislas Wawrinka needed to remind Jo-Wilfried Tsonga about who was seeded higher at this year’s French Open, and it wasn’t easy: it took Stan about four hours to log the third-round 4-6, 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-5), 6-2, 6-3 victory over Tsonga. He lost the subsequent round — a Swiss-fest against Roger Federer. (Read up: Roger and Stan’s career head-to-head; Pt. 2: French Open Men’s Singles Draw)

Buy: Lacoste Forest Hills Gym Bag; white, empire yellow, flame scarlet, and blue aster; $160; lacoste.com.

(photos by Alexander Klein/AFP/Getty Images)

fashion focus: in lotto, schiavone keeps the frills to a minimum

While we wouldn’t have picked Francesca Schiavone as the woman who could best showcase the uber-feminine clothes from this season’s Lotto drop, the Italian is keeping up her end of the sponsorship bargain during this claycourt season: she’s backed up her decision to lay low during the last Fed Cup tie with a quarterfinal appearance in Rome (losing to Stosur) and a semifinal defeat in Brussels (to Caro). Now she has a chance to defend her French Open title in the finals against Li Na, played tomorrow. (Draw: RG Women’s Singles)

TSF loves the skort in particular, with its super-bunched hem and bow off to the side. (We first noticed this on Pironkova back at Indian Wells.) Schiavone’s done a good job mixing up the skort’s three colors — pearl (grey), dark navy, and white — with the irid cocktail (light salmon) and dark navy pieces. We’re also glad she’s opted for the more subtle ruching of the cap-sleeve top, leaving the messy criss-cross design of the tank back in Rome. All that extra fabric is doing nothing for her flat-chestedness.

Buy: Lotto Missy Skort, €30.17; Polo, €34.03; Tank, €30.17; Dress, €45.29; Cap-Sleeve Top, €30.17.

More: Images from her 2011 Roland Garros looks — plus two from Rome — all after the cut…

want: wear the clay without getting dirty

Let’s leave the grime to the pros, ok?

What an entertaining semi! Schiavone played Bartoli, with the defending champ taking out the hometown fave 6-3, 6-3. She’ll face Li Na in the final; their combined age makes this the oldest women’s final since Tauziat and Novotna played Wimbledon in 1998 (via Christopher Clarey, that one).

Swatch comes up with the Jeux d’Elite Roland Garros watch — the same shade as the tourney’s clay courts — and puts it in a tennis ball case. Buy: € 67,00 at storerolandgarros.com.

(image via storerolandgarros.com)

short balls: pippa does paris

The royal box. Everyone’s favorite Middleton was in attendance at the French Open yesterday as Pippa attended matches on Philippe Chatrier with a gentleman that Busted Racquet hilariously ID’d as Parks and Recreation‘s Jean Ralphio. OK, we’re going to guess that’s not him. But that is Pippa. And in case you forgot, this was Pippa’s dress that stole the show (or at least borrowed it for a few minutes) at her big sis’s wedding.

British (tennis) royalty. While it’s rumored that Kate Middleton (that’s Duchess of Cambridge, to you!) is supposedly being asked to present trophies at Wimbledon this year, no one had to ask the storied folks of Birmingham if they wanted two tennis photo galleries to descend upon their historic community, which helped co-found lawn tennis way back in 1859.

Go fetch. We’re obsessed with this image that the Wall Street Journal ran last week of a pooch nabbing a flying tennis ball in the city. Perhaps our heart really got stolen by the two lookers-on, both of whom are decidedly jealous and couldn’t care less at the same time. | Blue’s blue on FO fashion: But don’t ask Blue Carreon of the Journal what he thinks of the fashion at this year’s RG. He’s. Not. Having. It.

Wheel of Tennis. While Blue isn’t loving the tennis threads of this year’s FO, Wheel of Fortune is giving the sport a whole week of love. The game show is promoting “Tennis Week” this week with tennis-themed prizes, appearances by well-known tennis faces and the best mixed doubles pair you’ve ever known: Alex Trebek and Vanna White, of course.

(Pippa image via Getty Images; Tennis Week image via WOF web site)

fashion focus: adidas adiace (roland garros)

Stanislas Wawrinka needed to remind Jo-Wilfried Tsonga about who was seeded higher at this year’s French Open, and it wasn’t easy: it took Stan about four hours to log the 4-6, 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-5), 6-2, 6-3 victory. And it doesn’t get any easier: up next is a Swiss-fest against Roger Federer. (Read up: Roger and Stan’s career head-to-head; Pt. 2: French Open Men’s Singles Draw)

Tsonga was the only ATPer clad in the Roland Garros-branded adidas adiAce line. On the men, they produced a slim-fit polo with flattering color-blocking (not that Tsonga needs help in that department). And you know how we love a popped collar, so the quarter-zipped stand-up collar on the polo is a nice touch. The colorways: Intense Green with white and Medium Lead; Medium Lead with Intense Green and Ice Grey.

On the women, they’ve used a maroon colorway on a scoop-neck dress with a pleated skirt. The accompanying wristband and warm-up jacket — accented with a neon (“Aero”) red — round out the collection. Also of note: a few graphic tees and a white, ruffled top for the ladies. See our picks below; browse (and buy!) everything here. What do you think of the adiAce goods?

(Tsonga photos by AP Photo/Michel Euler and Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images)

practice makes perfect: roger federer

Roger Federer has reached the fourth round of the 2011 French Open after brushing aside Janko Tipsarevic 6-1, 6-4, 6-3. Even from a different perspective — i.e., the buzz words these days are “Nadal” and “Nole” — it’s safe to say that this man can still play some good, clean ball: so far this week, he’s used his efficient serve to rack up only two break points after three rounds of play.

Nike Air Max Redux Men’s T-Shirt, $20, nike.com.

(photo by AP Photo/Christophe Ena)