Poor Andy’s back

A clay curse continues to plague American Andy Roddick as he was forced to pull out of his semifinal match against Stanislas Wawrinka at last week’s Masters Series Rome tournament. The culprit? Back spasms.

We would never wish an injury on anyone (ever) and especially not against Andy, but if an injury can lead to photos like this…?

(Photo by Getty Images)

I’ll let you in on a secret

I have a thing for people who can breakdance.

But I think I will draw the line at the Worm. Put it back in the hole, Radek!

Here’s the Czech celebrates after defeating top seed Roger Federer in the quarters of last week’s Masters Series Rome. (Stepanek’s fiancee, Nicole Vaidisova, was there to cheer him on.)

In his press conference, Roger cut short any questions about the loss, making sure to point out that the straight-set match was close — two tiebreaks — and that he had led in both before losing 7-4 and 9-7.

The extra days of rest will hopefully get him revved and ready to defend his title this week in Hamburg.

Trophy Watch: the race to the French shapes up

Nole Djokovic was the last man standing after a week of upsets and injuries at the Masters Series Rome. He beat Stanislas Wawrinka 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 on the Italian dirt.

About Wawrinka’s getup at the trophy ceremony, Randy “Sky” Walker wrote, “Ugh!” Those Adi Dassler tributes aren’t exactly for such a grand occasion, I guess.

It’s deep: The clay season is totally up in the air, with the men in the top seven spots having no more than two clay titles a piece: Federer, Estoril; Nadal, Monte Carlo and Barcelona; Djokovic, Australian and Rome; Ferrer, Valencia; Nalbandian, the Copa Telmex. Davydenko (Miami) and Roddick (Dubai, San Jose) have none. So who is going to take Roland Garros?

Insert me here?

Dinara Safina had a crazy week, taking out Justine Henin (Trivia: who was the last woman to beat Justine Henin and possibly forced her retirement from tennis?), Serena Williams and then Russian Elena Dementieva 3-6 6-2, 6-2 in the final.

Elena in Yonex. This is the same pink that she wore during the Australian Open but just in a different cut; this one has pleats. <3

(photos by Getty Images)

rome’s fashion highlights: davydenko and serena

Although many players were rockin’ the pink and purple this week (including Patty Schnyder and Svetlana Kuznetsova), it was Serena Williams who ran away with it, combining both colors in her Nike outfit. She even mixed it up with different accessories: a cap one day, and different colored headbands for the other two matches:

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(What do you think of Serena’s ensemble? Tell us.)

Meanwhile, Russian Nikolay Davydenko continues his love affair with clothier Airness, who has showered him with variations on his current uniform. We saw four versions in three color ways just this week — red, orange, and baby blue. Which means he had more costume changes than Serena:

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a weak week for trophies

So we’re a third done with the year and still no tourney has come close to matching what Masters Series Paris handed out to Davydenko last year. Who’s going to step up to the plate?

ATP: World No. 1 Roger Federer had to fight tooth and nail to overcome Clay No. 1 Rafael Nadal this week in Hamburg, and all he got was this lousy doorstop:

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(By the way, what is going on with Federer’s suspender shirt? I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Wimbledon. Nike needs to bring it.)

And the Bryan brothers get some plates in their win over Paul Hanley and Kevin Ullyett:

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Seniors: The Champions Cup folks are pretty much stuck on the ho-hum crystal vase. The tour handed it out again to Pete Sampras, this time in his win over Todd Martin in Athens:

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That’s Todd, above, speaking to the crowd.

SEWTA: Masters Series Rome, this week hosting the ladies, awarded Jelena Jankovic her third title for 2007 — a tour best — after beating Svetlana Kuznetsova 7-5, 6-1. Jelena received a trophy similar to the one Nadal picked up the week prior.

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Prince Albert of Monaco presented the trophy to Jelena.

(photos via Yahoo! Tennis, except for Jelena’s photo with the Masters Series Rome Cup, which is via the tournament website)

trophy watch: rome, berlin, and prague

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A few animals in the trophy list this week. Look at this cute bear they gave out to the Juniors runner-up at the Qatar German Open.

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And they brought out the same trophies they handed out in Doha. Ana Ivanovic gets a hawk and Svetlana Kuznetsova gets a clock tower. (Click here for trophies from Rome and Prague…)

woe is carlos moya

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Poor Carlos Moya, throwing his racket down in frustration during last week’s Masters Series Rome. Is it because:

a) he lost his first round match against Marcos Baghadatis 2-6, 3-6

or

b) he came to the party dressed in the same Nike outfit as three other gals.

I’m going to say “b.”

I understand that Nike is trying to drive a point home with this line of clothing. But having four different guys photographed in it has crossed into oversaturation. If I was Carlos, I’d be annoyed. Actually, I’d be more annoyed if I was James Blake or Gael Monfils. They had to play each other in the first round while wearing the same outfit.

(And this is just the black/white version we’re talking about. Rafa Nadal has the monopoly on the teal/black version for now.)

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(left to right: Amer Delic, Monfils, Blake)

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