the boobs are back in madrid

Feminism? What’s that? The ladies of the Mutua Madrilena Masters Madrid are back for yet another seven days of bouncin’ and ball-retrievin’.

Thankfully, tourney organizers opted out of last year’s bejeweled tattoos (leave that for Mariah‘s back) and instead focused on more subtle accessories for these fashion models-cum-ballgirls: a muted slate tank top, a cute black mini-brim cap with a tie on the back, and a pair of bright silver Diadoras for some pop.

(photos by Getty Images)

trophy watch: kissing crystal

trophies - david nalbandian - madrid - justine henin - zurich

More boring trophies from this week’s tournaments: the Zurich Open and the Mutua Madrilena Masters in Madrid. David Nalbandian beat Roger Federer 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 to win his first title of the year. He equaled Novak Djokovic‘s feat of defeating the Worlds No. 1 and 2 back-to-back in the same tournament. (Nole did it at the Rogers Cup.)

And Justine Henin continues her dominance of the women’s tour with her ninth title of the year. (She racked up four of them in this latest 20-match winning streak.) Justine took on Tatiana Golovin in the Zurich Open and won in straight sets — 6-4, 6-4.

More photos — plus men’s doubles results — after the cut…

focus: other kids play in the accessory sandbox

Much ado has been made about Roger Federer‘s bags from Nike: there was his dominatrix duffel for this year’s U.S. Open and the poodle pouch from Wimbledon.

Feliciano Lopez - Nike - Heritage SI Boston bag

But just so you know, the other guys carry them, too. Here’s Feliciano Lopez after his loss to Roger in the quarters of the Mutua Madrilena Masters last week, carrying a take on the Heritage SI Boston bag. You can’t really see it from this photo, but the other side of the carryall has the Nike logo and a swoosh.

Rafael Nadal used the same bag at this year’s U.S. Open.

Buy: The Heritage SI Boston’s on sale for $34.99 (down from $50) at Nike.com.

(photo via Getty Images)

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nadal gets the star treatment

There’s definitely someone at Nike taking care of Rafael Nadal. Of all the folks wearing this exact same Global Power Sleeveless Tank at this week’s Mutua Madrilena Masters — including Carlos Moya, Feliciano Lopez, Stefan Koubek — Rafa was the only one who made it work.

The key lies in the colors: the white headbands and the grey shorts worn Moya and Lopez wash out the shirt. On the other hand, Nadal’s light blue accessories mute the Dark Crystal Blue tank at the same time that his black Global Power Board Shorts help the same blue stand out.

(And it didn’t help the others that they were occasionally still wearing the same tank in the less-vibrant Argon blue shade from Fall ’07)

Buy: Board Shorts are $55 and the Global Power Sleeveless Tank is $55; both available at Midwest Sports.

No fanfare, no dress code: roger debuts winter look

Roger Federer does it again. The World No. 1 is playing yet another Sunday, and this week it’s at the Mutua Madrilena Masters in Madrid. He took out Nicholas Kiefer 6-4, 6-4 in the semis and will face David Nalbandian in the finals. The Argentine “overweight has-been” is showing the form that took him to No. 3 in the world in 2006; he took out Novak Djokovic 6-4, 7-6 (4) in the semis after beating a rusty Nadal 6-1, 6-2.

Roger’s moved away from his fall “Darth Federer” and his patriotic Davis Cup ensemble. Instead, he goes for an Obsidian Blue version of his custom Nike shirt (that one with the “RF” logo) and pairs it with the Mist Grey Control Shorts.

TSF’s totally okay with the Roger’s haute couture. If you saw what Nike’s selling to the masses for Winter 2007, you’d agree.

What do you think of the look? Tell us!

See an up-close photo of the “RF” on Roger’s shirt (plus a green striped tee for training) after the cut…

focus: lopez wears spanish colors

feliciano lopez - madrid masters - wristband

Unlike the guy who threw up ALL OVER the bus this morning, TSF ralphed just a little bit at the sight of Feliciano Lopez‘s mismatched ensemble — yes, his delicious lips and his chiseled left arm can only do so much — but we’ll cut him some slack this week: the Spaniard’s playing in his home tourney after all, so it’s cool for him to pair his Dark Crystal Blue Global Power tank with a yellow and red Nike wristband.

Feli won his first round, all-Spanish battle against David Ferrer 7-6 (3), 7-5.

p.s. He also wore this cute wristband to a Davis Cup tie last year.

mishit: the ballgirls in madrid

With the WTA and ATP tour calendars jam-packed from January through December, it is sometimes hard for tournaments to make their mark (which is why I advocate a better array of trophies, at the least).

So TSF gives props to officials in Madrid for finding their own awesome schtick: train Boss models (read: top-notch, beautiful, fashion professionals) to work as ballfolk for a premier tour stop. This happened at last year’s Tennis Masters Series tourney and also at last year’s WTA Tour Championships. (There was even a big to-do about Maria Sharapova helping out with the selection process.)

boss models - madrid masters tennis - ballgirls

But someting happened between planning and execution this year because the girls showed up frumping around in pink dresses. And while black shoes might have worked at a less athletic event (worn correctly, pink bubble dress with black booties can work), they should NEVER be worn with light colors. The baby blue polo/skirt combo is alright.

boss models - madrid masters tennis - ballgirls

And what is going on with the beddazled tattoo? Am I watching The Real Housewives of Orange County?

So, to the organizers of the Mutua Madrilena Masters: go back to the drawing boards for next year’s event. Perhaps take inspiration from the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. Need we remind you how they dressed their raccattapalle? Yep, that’s how it’s done.

What do you think of the ballgirls? Tell us!

(photos by Getty Images)

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powder withdraws from madrid

My favorite albino, Nikolay Davydenko, has been making waves at this week’s Mutua Madrilena Masters in Madrid:

First he criticizes Andy Murray for spouting off about match-fixing and then taking it all back — “stupid” actions which will only put more heat on Kolya as he meets with the ATP.

Then he shakes up the draw by pulling out of the tournament due to an elbow injury (likely stemming from a wrist injury he sustained at last week’s Kremlin Cup final). He’s already qualified for the Tennis Masters Cup, so he can take a little breather.

davydenko - madrid - terracotta warriors

It’s funny how perfect this photo is: the three giants of the men’s tour — Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic — are totally dwarfing the fourth-ranked Russian.

Thankfully, there’s a better photo after the cut.