a little rough around the edges

…and we’re not even talking about the softening (but still crankypants) Marat Safin!

TSF loves what has been planted as the seeds of some cool branding/logo work for the Shanghai ATP Masters tournament. The brush drawing of that floral main tennis stadium alongside the Chinese characters for the city has a lot of potential. We can’t wait to see where they take it.

Which isn’t to say that it’s all a (moon)cakewalk: the tourney’s website’s hard is to find (google “shanghai atp masters” and see how many results and/or links you have to click through — ours was two — before getting to the event homepage) and there’s not a lot of meat when you get there. Perhaps this is part of why the stands are emp. ty.

Draw: Marat lost in the second round to Tomas Berdych in three sets, but didn’t go down without a fight. He criticized the Czech’s gamesmanship (calling a medical timeout) and Andy Roddick‘s whining about the too-long ATP playing schedule. Apparently, Marat called attention to this during the Olympics in 2004, but they just all told him that he was just playing too much. (What’s in the water this month? First Masha calling Azarenka a “Jankovic” for calling on a trainer twice in a match, and now this…) Up next for Tomas is Gilles Simon. See the draw here.

(image via Getty)

david ferrer is a dirty, dirty pirate

David Ferrer defeated Richard Gasquet 6-4, 6-3 in the first round of the Shanghai Masters. He’ll next face compatriot Feliciano Lopez, and have a so-so Juan Martin del Potro as a potential third-round match-up. If he makes it through, Tsonga will likely be his quarterfinal opponent. Draw here.

Gold: Ferrer is wearing pieces from Lotto‘s Shock collection, this time in black and gold. He also wore this at the 2009 U.S. Open.

More: A few more pics of David after the cut…

a quiet year for michael llodra

Michael Llodra lost 6-1, 6-4 to 14th seed Tommy Robredo in the first posted to WP.com: a quiet year for michael llodra round of this week’s Shanghai Masters tournament. Not a good year for the Frenchman so far; his ranking has dropped a career-high 34 (June, 2008) to 129.

Buy: At least that Lacoste Super Dry Stripe Polo looks refreshing. This was the company’s standard issue for all the men at the U.S. Open. Note the “tennis ball” green accent at the cuff and the solid block of the collar. TSF prefers the black version. $95 at Midwest Sports.

More: A few more pics of Llodra after the cut…

(maybe) haaay! gong mao-xin

He’s not quite HOAT, but we’re keeping our eyes on Shanghai Masters wildcard Gong Mao-Xin, who lost in the opening round to Marat Safin 6-4, 6-4. Consider us intrigued.

Draw: Safin will next face Tomas Berdych, who beat last week’s Beijing finalist, Marin Cilic. If he gets past Berdych, he’ll potentially face Simon in the third round and then Djokovic in the quarters. See it all here. (pdf)

(image via Getty)

mischa zverev: before the fall, another erke peek

German Mischa Zverev had to retire from his first-round match against tenth seed Fernando Gonzalez at the Shanghai Masters Tennis Tournament this week. A right wrist injury, sustained during a fall early in the third set, left the score at 7-5, 6-7 (0), 2-2 — which sucks, since Zverev won that tiebreaker against Gonzo.

But before his departure, we got another peek into the wonderful world of Erke; Zverev’s the tennis face of this Chinese brand, which also calls Yanina Wickmayer one of its athletes.

Bracket: Roger Federer and Andy Murray pulled out of the tourney due to exhaustion and a wrist injury, respectively. Roddick and Nadal are grumbling about how long the tennis season is (with reason: have anyone play grueling tennis for 11 months a year and their body will surely fall apart).

Okay, I tried to find the bracket on that user-unfriendly tourney website. I will love you forever if you can help me track it down.

Deets: Note the color gradation detail down the sleeves of Mischa’s polo. Cute monochromatic wristbands, too. See more pics after the cut…

thomas reynolds keeps on

James Blake and his Thomas Reynolds collaboration with Fila are keeping on, whether we like it or not. After debuting at the 2009 US Open with the Coolmax Crew in baby blue (“Campanula”), Blake has moved on to white and navy colorways of the TR Jersey Crew. (Buy: $37.99, TW)

That being said, we found the Fall Hoodie totally comfortable, and there’s some good detail in the contrast, unfinished seams.

On the court: James is still sputtering after his trip to the finals of the AEGON championships back in June. Since then, he’s lost in the first round twice (Wimbledon, Cincinnati Masters), second round (Beijing), and the third (US Open). Here’s hoping that he’ll make some sort of a mark at this week’s Shanghai Masters tournament.

(image via Getty Images)