kit count: lacoste shows at french tourney in montpellier

#kitcount - Feb 4-10, 2013

 

Last (gar)men(ts) standing: As much as we here at TSF pay attention to the scorelines week in and out, we’re also curious about which brands have been making the smartest (luckiest?) moves with their sponsorships: are they putting eggs in the correct tennis baskets? Are their players making the later rounds of tournaments?

#kitcount: If you have questions, feedback, or comments about this, please contact us with the #kitcount hashtag. Looking forward to explore this with y’all.

Croatian love: The sponsor-less Ivan Dodig is makin use of his real estate with shout-outs to his homeland, similar to how Marcos Baghdatis had Cyprus badges for a brief period in 2010. Dodig’s worn badges over his kits in Kooyong and at the Australian Open.

cilic: one of the u.s. open's best dressed

Li Ning‘s been given the tall task of dressing Marin Cilic at this year’s U.S. Open. They made good use of vibrant, contrasting colors (royal blue, yellow, and white) in blocks, lines, and swirls to break up the real estate on the 6′ 6″ Croat. Plus brownie points for the sleek footwear colors — socks included. It’s refreshing to see tennis (almost-)whites in an era when everyone’s trying to infuse their gear with color.

Marin, the tournament’s 27th seed, beat Ryan Harrison 6-2, 7-5, 7-6 (8-6) in the opening round and dropped only three games against Tomic in the second before falling to Federer. He can take solace in having taken a set off Fed, for anchoring the Croatian Davis Cup team for their tie vs. South Africa later this month, and for being one of the U.S. Open’s best dressed gents.

More: Two other pics of Cilic after the cut…

ljubicic gains some traction in monte carlo

Ivan Ljubicic gets past the second round of an ATP event for the first time since early February with his upset of 12th-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the second round of the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. Up next for the Croat is fifth seed Tomas Berdych; they’re both in Nadal‘s quarter.

That Li Ning green makes him blend in with the background. Maybe ninja stealth is the way to success? FYI, Ljubicic is now ranked 40th in the world. Yikes.

(images via Getty Images)

ljubicic upsets murray in beijing

The same color-blocking that appeared during Davis Cup (on the Colombians) has made its way to Beijing this week as Li Ning mascot Ivan Ljubicic vies for the China Open title. He upset Andy Murray 6-3, 6-2 and will next face David Ferrer (who took out Soderling). The other semi will feature Isner — who beat Kolya — and Djokovic (d. Simon). See the scorelines here.

(images via Getty Images)

ljubicic’s sputter continues in metz

That Li Ning stallion — the brand associated with Ivan Ljubicic‘s kits from the Chinese company — isn’t helping him ride back up the ATP rankings. At this week’s Open de Moselle in Metz, the Croat, seeded third, was upset by Xavier Malisse 7-5, 6-2. And at the 2010 US Open, Ljubicic went out in the first round to Ryan Harrison. Uhm, what happened to the dude who won Indian Wells this year? (Info: Metz on the ATP site.)

More: Two other pictures of Ivan’s orange and brown kit (note that horse on the sleeve, and the orange shoes) after the cut…

davis cup: colombian color coordination

Babolat and Li Ning did a wonderful job bringing together the Colombian Davis Cup as they host the USA at the World Group Play-offs this weekend in Bogota. Santiago Giraldo defeated Sam Querrey 6-2, 6-4, 7-5, in the second rubber and is now serving at 6-5 in the fifth set against Mardy Fish. (The Americans are up 2-1, so Giraldo needs a win to give Colombia a chance to advance.)

More: All the tie info available here.

Yellow, red, and blue: See another shot of Santiago’s crew (Babolat) and doubles player Carlos Salamanca in Li Ning after the cut…

davis cup: mostly quiet on the eastern front

The boisterous crowd who came to cheer the Croatian Davis Cuppers at the Spaladium Arena in Split could not boost their home team past the more experienced Serbian posse at this weekend’s Davis Cup quarterfinal tie. The decisive 4-1 rout puts the team of Djokovic, Tipsarevic, Troicki, and Zimonjic in the semifinals — a first for their country in Davis Cup history. (Scoreline: Tie details)

Still, props to Marin Cilic for wearing his checkered Fila tee and notching the one “W” for Croatia (the second singles rubber, against Troicki). The lanky 21-year-old was gracious in his post-match presser, picking Nole and his team to the take the Cup this year.

The Serbs — pampered in their digs — showed up in a variety of kits all showcasing their country’s colors. Nole picked a solid red polo from Sergio Tacchini while Nenad opted for a more playful version in Lacoste. Troicki sprinkled some blue in his Los tee while Janko and his bangs stayed safe with Fila. On the Croatian side, Ljubicic and Dodig‘s Li Ning kits were both as uninspired as their play.

(images via Getty Images)

we ran out of ljub

Hard-serving Ivo Karlovic upset veteran Croatian Ivan Ljubicic 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7) in the third round of the 2010 Australian Open. Up next is Rafa Nadal, who lost the third set in his match against Philipp Kohlschreiber. (Draw: Men’s singles.)

Li Ning put him in the same multi-patterned mishmash polo (this time in a light seafoam green) to start out 2010. With all the sartorial switcheroos so far, it’s refreshing to see that Ivan and Li Ning have stuck together.

TSF spoke to Ljubicic back at the 2009 U.S. Open, and he told us all about how he’s worked closely with Li Ning to tweak and develop their tennis sneaks; he was their guinea pig. We look forward to what’s in store for Ljubicic in 2010. (Further reading: Ad Age named Li Ning their Marketer of the Year for 2009.)

More: See more pics of Ivan after the cut…

li ning posterboy ljubicic is first to scalp a seed

Ivan Ljubicic was the first to scalp a seed at this year’s Mutua Madrilena Madrid Masters. The Croatian wild card broke Jo-Wilfried Tsonga three times, with two of those coming in the second set when Ljubicic rallied from 5-2 down. The final score: 6-4, 7-5.

Props to his clothing sponsor, Li Ning, for continually surprising us with novel designs for his on-court kit. This go-’round combines a bright yellow polo with a silver print overlay.

More where that came from: Above are some athletic and casual looks from the current Li Ning line. They were showcased as part of the ATP launch of its Chinese-language site.