that painting is brill



Upper right corner, my friends. Nole posing next to his Pacific Life Open trophy. Amazing.

(God, how we miss that whale.)

This photo was taken during the ceremony held at this week’s Serbia Open in Belgrade to hand diplomatic passports to Ana Jovanovic, Bojana Jovanovski, Janko Tipsarevic, Nenad Zimonjic, Viktor Troicki, and Novak Djokovic.

“I am honored to promote to diplomatic service people who have contributed to the popularity of Serbia in the world,” said Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic. “There is not a single country in the world which wouldn’t be honored to have you as ambassadors.”

More: See the whole story at the Serbia Open site and the full gallery here.

(img by Pedja Milosavljevic via serbiaopen.rs)

do not sit idly, berdych



It looks like the Serbians really want to get to the Davis Cup final. As if having 2010 US Open finalist Novak Djokovic on their roster isn’t enough, they brought the Langoliers along to nip at the Czech team’s heels.

Tie: Most of the Belgrade Arena (capacity: 16,842) will probably root for the home team. Nole and Radek Stepanek are up first; Janko Tipsarevic and Tomas Berdych will follow. Nenad Zimonjic and Viktor Troicki will play Jan Hajek and Ivo Minar in the doubles rubber, and the singles players will switch opponents. More info here.

(image via daviscup.com)

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)

davis cup: the boys in red win for serbia



All four guys on the Serbian Davis Cup team — Nole, Nenad Zimonjic, Viktor Troicki, and Janko Tipsarevic — did their part to win their World Group playoff tie against Slovakia this weekend. (And everyone managed to keep their clothes on, unlike last year’s peep show!)

Djokovic wore a red adidas polo while taking out Dominik Hrbaty 6-2, 6-4, 6-3.

And blue-spectacled Janko, in Fila, had to work for his five-setter against Lukas Lacko. The score: 6-7 (3), 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (5), 8-6. That win must feel good, especially in light of how Janko’s ankle has sidelined him in some late summer tournaments.

For the clincher, Zimonjic (Nike) and Troicki (Diadora) beat Filip Polasek and Michal Mertinak in four tough sets: 7-6 (8), 6-4, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (5).

More Janko pics: Just because we can never get enough…

fashion focus: adidas dresses nole



djokovic-daviscup-spr08.jpg

The guys in the adidas stable normally get the short end of the fashion stick, but Novak Djokovic got some special attention with this red version of Spring’s Competition 5 Traditional Polo. Nole wore it playing doubles with Nenad Zimonjic in the Davis Cup tie against Russia this weekend.

Scoreline: The ailing Serbian team needed over two hours to overcome the Russian duo of Mikhail Youzhny and Dmitry Tursunov 6-3, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5). Both Nole and Janko Tipsarevic might play tomorrow’s reverse singles. (See full results here.)

Buy: adidas Competition 5 Traditional Polo, $41.99, available in four colorways — none of them in Serbian colors, unfortch — at TW)

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