ferrer's manic miami moment

Don’t cry for me: The pronunciation of David Ferrer‘s name is being butchered by newscasters across America as news stations run footage of him belting a ball up into the crowd on Wednesday out of frustration that a baby was crying. Well, that wasn’t the only reason, but Ferrer’s dismal, straight-set loss to Mardy Fish was just that: frustrating.

short balls: an ailing andy (and rafa drinks rum!)

By Benjamin Snyder

Flip flop: As the Sony Ericsson Open winds down, two very different players are working their way up in the rankings. For the men, it’s Mardy Fish, who overtook Andy Roddick as the top American man with a win over David Ferrer in the quarterfinals. A sick Roddick succumbed to Pablo Cuevas in the second round of the huge hard court Miami event and was bounced out of the top ten for the first time in some years.

Maria’s back in the habit: While the Williams sisters fall outside of the top ten with illness and injury, Maria Sharapova is rising back to the top tier with decent showings at Indian Wells and this week in Miami. Masha has Andrea Petkovic in the semis, a player who flattened her when the two met Down Under in Melbourne. (More Maria: Those earrings!)

… but no royal wedding, yet: Apparently, the 23-year-old Maria is in “no rush to get married,” according to Show Biz Spy. And why should she be? We’d like to see Maria win two or three more Majors – she’s got them in her, we think – before strolling down to take Sasha’s hand. Meanwhile: No playoffs for his Nets.

But seriously, is Maria just getting cold feet? “In the beginning I was really, really excited, and all my friends were giving me like wedding magazines and wedding books. But I was quite overwhelmed with it, and then I just put them down and said, ‘Okay, I have plenty of time.’ We’re still very young.”

TSF Exclusive: Rumors say Djokovic has strolled down the aisle

Swan song for Petko’s dance? While Petkovic even has the ever-awkward Ana Ivanovic shaking her tail feather on the tennis court, the German – who is matching her play to her popularity this week – is retiring her famous jig following this week. She told the press that it’s time to move on from the ditty, which became an underground hit in tennis realms. Is she lending her dance skills to B-Spears? We sure hope so. But notice: She said “move on.” We’re sensing another dance number folks, just something new and, well, so Petko.

Rum like Rafa: Rafael Nadal recently signed a deal with Bacardi, receiving some backlash in the process. Says Nadal, “I am not presenting alcohol party, you know. It’s a responsible campaign, a social campaign. Anyway, I think alcohol is inside our lives, so is nothing new, no?” No Rafa, it’s nothing new to us. And we appreciate your push for responsibility. More: YouTube channel | Facebook

‘Round the world: Then there are the two Missoula, Montana, teens who just broke the Guinness World Record for the longest singles tennis match, ever. Isner-Mahut looks like a Roehampton side court to this Centre Court effort. The two high school seniors clocked in nearly 61 hours of tennis over three days before collapsing, raising $7,000 for charity in the process. Snaps for those court warriors.

(Image by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

del potro pumps up the volume

What an apropos shirt on Juan Martin del Potro, who — even though he fell to Mardy Fish 7-5, 7-6 (5) in the fourth round of this week’s Sony Ericsson Open — has continued to work his way back to the top of the game after last year’s debilitating wrist injury: he followed up two early round losses in Sydney and Melbourne with three semi appearances (San Jose, Memphis, Indian Wells) and a title at Delray Beach. Next week’s rankings should put him just inside the top 50.

Draw: Up next for Fish is a possibility of taking over the top American spot on the ATP (ousting Roddick). He’ll need to defeat David Ferrer to get this done. (Scan: SEO Draws)

We couldn’t find this yellow Nike crew on any retailer’s site, but we’re all about the subtle circles up top and the honeycomb columns on the bottom. Looks like an equalizer display, no? (Update: This is the Showdown Movement Top, $55. The polo version is available at Tennis Express.)

Two shots: More Delpo after the cut…

shirtless…. mardy fish?

Yep, a headline we never would have bet on. Mardy Fish is the 19th seed at the 2010 US Open. He’s in the bottom half of the draw (with Federer) and shares the same quarter as buddy Andy Roddick. Meanwhile, with his recent transformation (dedicating himself to fitness as he recovered from an injury sustained in the fall of 2009), we expect to see more pictures like this.

Draw: If you want to see what Mardy’s up against in New York this year, click here.

(Wimbledon ’10 image via Getty)

trophy watch: golubev propelled, chakvetadze returns, goerges’s first, fish extends streak

Andrey Golubev has made history by being the first player from Kazakhstan to win a title. He upset the 15th-ranked (and 2010 Roland Garros semifinalist) Jurgen Melzer 6-3, 7-5 in the final of the German Open in Hamburg.

The thirty pounds Mardy Fish lost in the last year certainly came in handy in winning the Atlanta Tennis Championships final against marathon man John Isner. The score: 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4). Props to him for upsetting top seed Andy Roddick in the semis and overcoming local fave Robby Ginepri in the second round. Fish also won last week’s HoF tourney in Newport — he’s looking good for the Open!

Chakky’s baaack! Former top-fiver Anna Chakvetadze bagged her first title since 2008 by taking out Sweden’s Johanna Larsson 6-1, 6-2 in the final of the Slovenia Open.

Julia Goerges beat Timea Bacsinszky 6-1, 6-4 to win her first career singles title at the Gastein Ladies in Austria. Goerges has had a good couple of weeks; she also made it to the semis of the Palermo tournament before losing to top seed Pennetta.

(ATP images via Getty; Chakvetadze photo by Ales Fevzer; Goerges photo by Matthias Hauer/GEPA Pictures)

sunday survey: your summer thoughts

Novak Djokovic and Vera Zvonareva have already pulled out of their respective first stops on the US Open Series calendar. Vera won’t be popping in at Stanford for The Bank of the West Classic, and Novak isn’t heading to LA for the Farmers Classic. As the draw shows [PDF] and Chris Oddo notes, the BOTW isn’t hurting too much without the Wimbledon finalist on hand. And Andy Murray is headed down to LA to fill Djoko’s slot.

Andy Roddick is already struggling in his summer season, losing in the semifinals at the Atlanta Tennis Championships to a slimmed-down Mardy Fish. Will it be a ho-hum summer for A-Rod or will he pack at the Open like he wants to?

Sunday Survey: What do you think the big story lines will be for summer 2010? Injuries galore? Serena missing? A Delpo comeback? What woman can break away from the pack and become a favorite for the year’s last Major? And who of the men will make their claim for a Slam title in New York? Rafa? Roger? Andy(s)? It’s your turn to tell us in this week’s version of the Sunday Survey.

(photo by MartinWorster via flickr)

short(er) balls: musical outfits

If you liked Andy Murray sporting tight-fitting Fred Perry at this year’s US Open and you enjoy Novak Djokovic in his always-colorful adidas ensembles, this may not be the best piece of news for you. Or perhaps it might be?!

While I’ll leave all the fashion opinionating to my trusted boss, Erwin, I will announce that there are reports that Djokovic may be ditching the Big a and signing with K-Swiss, while Murray might be taking his place at adidas.

Musical outfits, oh my! What do you think?

Open minded: Kim Clijsters might be the clearest thinker in women’s tennis right now. She announced yesterday she’ll play a 13-tournament schedule in 2010 (motherhood and Slams still come before ranking, she says). And, today, announced a partnership with Thomas Cook, the Euro airline that you may find Kim, Jada and Brian on a flight on in the near future. But just remember, when you see them sitting in first class, they def didn’t pay!

Puppy love: That’s Mardy Fish with one of the Bryan brothers (can you tell which?!) presenting his new pup, Charlie. Mards, we love the pup, but please oh please, get a haircut boy! Good grooming skills are a must, even after the Open!

(photo via twitpic)

trophy watch: surf, sand, and sun

In Acapulco, both Nicolas Almagro and Flavia Pennetta made it to the finals — like they did last year, but only one of them defended their title.

Almagro upset Gael Monfils 6-4, 6-4 — revenge from their heated third-round Australian Open match, perhaps? And Pennetta bowed out to Venus Williams in just over an hour. The 6-1, 6-2 win gives Venus her second title in as many weeks.

Fish schools Korolev: The tennis pedigree (he’s Anna Kournikova‘s cousin) didn’t quite help Evgeny Korolev maintain trend at the Delray Beach ITC: up until Mardy Fish‘s 7-5, 6-3 win on Sunday, the tournament’s top seeds had never taken the title.

Last man standing? If Nole didn’t end up bringing home this boat from Dubai, it would’ve been pretty sad. The other top guys — Roger, Rafa, Andys Murray and Roddick — all dropped out for various reasons. Thankfully, he lived up to the challenge and beat David Ferrer 7-5, 6-3.

davis cup: i, too, would settle for a pompadour…

Who needs a custom Davis Cup kit when you’ve got an amazing pompadour like Fernando Verdasco?

Unfortunately, his solid red adidas Compeition Crew looked bland next to the rest of Team Espana’s uniforms.

Meanwhile, Joma and Feliciano Lopez continue their wonderful partnership with his Davis Cup getup. (See the detail on the back of his polo, and his shoes.) Nadal is wearing the same vibrant Nike kit that he wore in Beijing, save for a switch to a red headband (instead of yellow). David Ferrer is in Lotto (pic).

Scoreline: After Nadal beat Sam Querrey (Sam took the first set) and Ferrer took out Andy Roddick in five sets, the Spanish duo fell to Mike Bryan and Mardy Fish 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 4-6. This gives the Americans a chance to get back into the tie with reverse singles tomorrow. (See the details here. First up: Rafa will play Andy!)

(photo by Getty Images)