short balls wednesday



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Hard times with hardcourts: The Age reported that Lleyton Hewitt‘s camp goofed on installing a non-Deco Turf (aka Aussie Open-esque) hardcourt, thus botching Lleyton’s prep plans for his hometown Grand Slam. But Hewitt quickly denied the error, saying he got exactly what he wanted. (Herald Sun)

Bec shuts down: Bec Hewitt does her share of shutting down gossip, too. She’s spoken out against pregnancy rumors… (MSN)

Bec shuts down, pt. 2: …and she chose not to renew her two-year contract with Woman’s Day, the magazine which shelled out more than a million dollars for exclusive rights to baby Mia‘s birth. (Defamer)

Clay: We always gripe about how rain wreaks havoc on tennis play, but no one ever talks about what drought can do to clay courts. Global warming: you win again! (The Age)

Aussie Open heat rule: Speaking of dealing with heat, the Aussie Open eases up on its extreme heat rule. For 2008, once it’s invoked, players need only complete the rest of the set (and not the match, as in years past). (NewstalkZB)

Jelena under the knife: Nose surgery was on Jelena Jankovic‘s agenda recently, with the World No. 3 trying to fix some breathing problems. Perhaps this will put her on the same path as Nole Djokovic, whose post-nose surgery results were significantly improved. Jelena still plans to play a charity event in Belgrade against Ana Ivanovic this Friday. (WTB)

Tennis as an individual sport: Reason #25 that I’m okay not being on a team: If I really need to go, I can always retire from a match. (Deadspin)

Xmas wish list: Aaress at OTB tells Santa what she wants for Christmas. (My faves: “Better multimedia section on the [WTA] Tour website” and getting Venus and Serena to play Indian Wells.)

Roger humbled: SI names Brett Favre (my friend Debbie is excited, I’m sure!) their Sportsman of the Year, leaving Roger Federer out of the picture yet again. R-Fed came close last year (Dwayne Wade? Really?), but not only did he lose out to the Packer, he’s also losing the SOTY endorsement from Jon Wertheim. Bonus: Roger was interviewed by CNN on the day of his last exo with Pete Sampras. Here’s the transcript.

(OT) Shepard Fairey: I ducked into the opening of Shepard Fairey‘s latest show in Los Angeles. Here’s some video of the night, plus my fave section: the album cover wall.

Another Seles comeback?: Monica Seles spoke to Bill Dwyre as press for her upcoming appearance at the Bank of the West Pro-Celebrity Tennis Classic (Riviera Country Club in the Palisades). The good news? She wants to be back on the tour in time for Miami. (LAT)

(photo via The Age)