Monday, August 28, 2017

US.1 - Mugu on the Loose

Garbine Muguruza, arguably *the* star of the WTA summer, opened play on Arthur Ashe Stadium on Day 1 of this U.S. Open. She arrived on the biggest tennis court in the world as, in the eyes of many, the "favorite" to win the title. Of course, her words say she's having none of it.

"I don't really care," she said of her unofficial standing ahead of the tournament, "Because I don't feel I'm a favorite here, because I never really played very good."

Well, you'd never know it by the way she played today.

"You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights! You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights."

Facing off with Varvara Lepchenko, who reached the 3rd Round at Flushing Meadows two years ago (deeper than the Spaniard, with only two 2nd Round results as her best efforts, has ever gone in New York), Muguruza simply won the first seven games of the match, extending her slam game-winning streak to sixteen, after having won nine straight to close out her Wimbledon final victory over Venus Williams a few months ago. Continuing to play the aggressive, but controlled, brand of tennis that has inserted her into the #1-ranking conversation, the Spaniard took advantage of her opportunities as a matter of course. She converted three of four break point chances in the 1st set, then broke for a 4-2 lead in the 2nd en route to a 6-0/6-3 win, the first of her career on Ashe. She dropped just ten points on serve.

"Being from Spain, this is too early for me," Muguruza said of the 11 a.m. start.

Three years after being the First Seed Out of the U.S. Open, the Spaniard was the first of the array of the players with #1 within her grasp to advance to the 2nd Round. 10-2 on summer hard courts, the Cincinnati champion is now 17-2 since the start of Wimbledon, and 26-6 since Rome this spring. Consistency has seemingly been found for a super-talented player whose biggest previous liability was her lack of such a trait.

Muguruza may truly believe that she's not the "favorite," and will likely continue to shrug off the expectations that will continue to ring in her ears when she steps off the court over the course of this tournament. But as long as she can continue to embrace the big stage, and never shy away from the pressure that sometimes buckles others when they tread there, she might be playing this same denying game for the FULL two-week schedule of this slam.

Yep. Mugu is now officially on the loose in New York City. Now, who's woman enough to catch her?

...on Monday, it didn't take long for a Pliskova to make her mark. Fifty-seven minutes, to be exact. But it was Kristyna, not #1-ranked Karolina, who made the headline. Pliskova -- in a quite interesting tennis dress featuring flowers and ruffles -- became the first player to advance to the 2nd Round with a 6-2/6-2 win over Japan's Misa Eguchi, slamming the door shut on Court 5 (her first Open MD win since 2012) just before Pasty Caroline Garcia threatened to get over the finish line first on Court 7 by taking a 6-0/5-1 lead over Tereza Martincova. Garcia finished things off a game later. Karolina takes the court on Day 2.

...oh, Lauren.

2017 began on such a high note for Lauren Davis. The diminutive Bannerette opened the season by becoming a maiden tour title winner in Auckland. She won sixteen of her first twenty matches, reached the Round of 16 at Indian Wells and reached a career high of #26 in May. She's gone 7-17 since, and already had two separate four-match losing streaks before losing her seventh straight match today. The #32-seed (she slipped into the seeds with the withdrawals of higher-ranked players), Davis became the First Seed Out by falling to 18-year old wild card Sonya Kenin despite holding break leads in both the 1st and 2nd sets, taking a 4-0 lead in the opening stanza and holding set points in the latter in a 7-5/7-5 loss. Kenin, the back-to-back winner of the USTA's Wild Card Playoff Challenge records her first career MD win at a major. She'll face qualifying Bannerette Sachia Vickery (def. Natalia Vikhlyantseva) next.

...and then there were seven. Players who could reach #1 at this Open, that is. And it was the #7 seed, incidentally, that fell by the wayside first.

That'd be Brit Johanna Konta, the latest victim of the particularly astounding (at times) force known around here as, simply, The Bracelet. Yep, Aleksandra Krunic was at it again on Day 1 in New York, pulling the upset with at 4-6/6-3/6-4 victory, getting her first Top 10 win in three years. She'll face Ajla Tomljanovic in the 2nd Round.

Konta has been a bit "off" since she arrived in North America fresh off her Wimbledon SF run (and 13-4 grass season) and brief climb into the Top 5. It's not surprising, really. While Konta *was* a previous slam semifinalist ('16 AO), doing so in front of a home crowd and taking on that particular crown of thorns -- and continuing to maintain such a high level of play -- is another task indeed. Even while looking to be one of the best hard courters on tour over the last year or so, she went just 2-2 this summer coming into today. Konta won the 1st set vs. Krunic, but nerves seemed to play a key role in the gradual extinction of her latest New York experience.

Krunic was up an early break in the 3rd, but Konta got things back on serve at 2-2. But the Serb broke gain for a 4-3 lead, and was two points from victory at 5-3 before Konta managed to hold serve. Then, showing signs of feeling the moment, Krunic went up 40/love a game later and, on her second MP, saw Konta yank a backhand wide to end it. So, after qualifying and putting up back-to-back wins over Roland Garros champs at Cincinnati -- Francesca Schiavone and then, wait for it, Alona Ostapenko in straight sets -- Krunic is itching for another NYC run. Remember, in 2014 she qualified and knocked off Madison Keys and Petra Kvitova en route to the Round of 16, where she took Vika Azarenka to three sets. The Bracelet has already won a WTA 125 Series title (her biggest so far) in Bol on clay this year, and reached the $100K Manchester final on grass. She's due for a nice result on hard courts, I suppose.

The world #78, Krunic is now one step closer to becoming the Serbian #1 for the first time. At the moment, #68 Jelena Jankovic is the only woman above her in the rankings.

"My alphabet starts with this letter called yuzz. It's the letter I use to spell yuzz a ma tuzz. You'll be sort of surprised what there is to be found once you go beyond Z and start poking around."
"Dr. Seuss"

Oh, did I mention JJ? First, let's just say, the Colorful One seems a perfect model for the Fila outfit she was wearing today.

Now, the bad news. She lost. Again.

Earlier this summer, Jankovic was non-committal about whether she'd play again in 2017. But she was there today for her 1st Round match, just like she has been at the last 55 majors. Her 56-slam streak is the third-longest by a woman in tour history, behind only Ai Sugiyama's 62 and Schiavone's recently-ended run of 61. She very nearly snatched an opportunity to knock off Petra Kvitova today, too, but fell 7-5/7-5. JJ had broken the Czech when she served for the 1st set at 5-3, then got things to 5-5 before faltering. She led 2-0 in the 2nd, and served for the set at 5-4. Again, though, she couldn't close things out.

Since her 1st Round victory in Charleston in the spring, Jankovic has slumped to 2-11. She's 9-19 on the year and is line for her worst season-ending ranking since at least 2003. At 32, even in the current age of SuperVets, one has to wonder if her give-me-a-marathon style of play will soon mean her results, injuries or otherwise might mean we won't see her very many more times in big stage matches like this one.

"Remember me and smile, for it’s better to forget than to remember me and cry."

The moment when there is no more JJ, no more Queen Chaos, no more Whirling Dervish or otherwise, is likely able to be seen from here. But, hopefully, before that sad day arrives things will turn around enough that she'll give us a few moments down the line that will remind us of the glittery, one-of-a-kind WTA entity that Jankovic has been for so long.

(Crossing fingers.)

...elsewhere on Day 1, Aussie Arina Rodionova seems to be getting use to this "grand slam thing." She needed to qualify and save seven MP vs. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova at Wimbledon to get her first career slam MD win at age 27 earlier this summer. She got into the Open draw via a reciprocal WC courtesy of Tennis Australia after the best extended run of her career, and today she got slam win #2. In straight sets, no less, over Richel Hogenkamp, 7-5/7-5.

Arina's got this.

The second seed to fall wasn't a great shocker, as #24 Kiki Bertens -- better on clay and just 2-5 in her U.S. Open career -- was knocked off by Maria Sakkari. The Greek, now working with Thomas Johansson as her coach, jumped out to a quick 4-1 lead, and posted her first career win in NYC by a 6-3/6-4 score.

17-year old qualifier Claire Liu, the youngest player in the MD, didn't do the same vs. Duan Yingying, though she certainly had her chances. The Wimbledon girls champ had two SP in the 1st set, but ultimately lost it in a 10-8 TB. In the 2nd, the Bannerette overcame a 3-0 deficit, getting things back on serve at 3-4, only to drop serve and give Duan the chance to serve things out at 5-3. Liu got the break and knotted things at 5-5, and soon served at 6-5. But she dropped serve and the two went to another TB. It went quicker than the first, as the Chinese woman finished off the match, winning 7-6(8)/7-6(3).

Another qualifier, Kateryna Kozlova, looked as if she might be licking her own wounds over a blown opportunity today against Irina-Camelia Begu. The Ukrainian served at 6-2/5-3 and held two MP, only to fail to convert either and see the Romanian take things to a TB, and lead it 6-2. But Kozlova surged last, winning seven of the final eight points to win 9-7 and get her very first career MD win at a major.

Sloane Stephens, coming in off her remarkable comeback summer that saw her put up semifinal results in Toronto and Cincinnati, won a tight 1st set and then coasted to a 7-5/6-1 win over former finalist Roberta Vinci.

Late in the afternoon, Venus Williams was made to go three sets by 19-year old qualifier Viktoria Kuzmova, the girls RU a year ago who was making her slam MD debut today, before finally pulling away in the 3rd for a 6-3/3-6/6-2 win as she, along with Arthur Ashe Stadium, celebrates the 20th anniversary of her U.S. Open debut at this event. In 1997, with great fanfare, a 17-year old Venus found her way through it all, including the bump from Irina Spirlea in the semifinals, to reach the final, where she lost 6-0/6-4 to Martina Hingis.

The Swiss Miss, of course, will make HER '17 debut later this week. the last moments of the day session, Ash Barty took out the #21 seed Ana Konjuh ('16 U.S. QF) 4-6/6-0/6-1.

...I'll be back later tonight, since aside from a few additional day session matches that will carry over under the lights, there's a certain *other* contest that everyone will be tuning in for.

"A tree falls the way it leans. Be careful which way you lean."
"Dr. Seuss"

With her unfortunate/great (depending on how you look at it) 1st Round match-up with wild card Maria Sharapova, #2-seeded Simona Halep gets an early visit to the place where her slams so often end... The Cliffs of Simona. Will she lean in too far and go over the edge, or will she put down her foot and get her first win over the Russian in her seventh attempt? It could tell the tale not only of her 2017 U.S. Open, but also her quest for the #1 ranking and (at some point) her maiden slam crown.

Sharapova has played just one match since May, and has been dealing with leg and forearm injuries since her return from suspension, so a case can be made that Maria might not be physically up for a long match if it should go that way tonight. Of note, this will be Sharapova's first match at Flushing Meadows since 2014 (she missed '16 with the suspension and, largely forgotten now, '15 with injury). Her '14 Round of 16 run is her only U.S. Open draw appearance since 2012, in fact.

By the end of the night, the combined number of 1st Round exits by Halep/Sharapova at the Open will be doubled, as only the Romanian's debut in 2010 has ended so early in the previous seventeen appearances by the two. Between them, they've produced one title run (eleven years ago) and three SF in the tournament during that stretch.

"Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment, until it becomes a memory."
"Dr. Seuss"

That's not the case with Halep tonight, though. We -- and she -- will know the value, if it comes, right at the moment of impact.

LIKE ON DAY 1: Czech Power to the 1st Degree

When #1 meets #1! ??Czech represent!!! ???? #pojd????#proud #jsme #nejlepsi #cesko @karolinapliskova

A post shared by Lucie Safarova (@lucie.safarova) on

JUST THINKING ON DAY 1: In Peter Bodo's "The Name Game" article in the current Tennis magazine, he touches on the potential names the USTA could place on the new Grandstand Court, as well as the seven-year old Court 17, though the current plan is for neither to be given names that would honor past tennis greats.

The AO is identified by Laver and Court, while RG has Chatrier and Lenglen. The U.S. Open, on tennis center grounds named for Billie Jean King, has Ashe Stadium, as well as the soon-to-be-newly-built Louis Armstrong Stadium replacement. But the opportunity is there for more. Bodo throws out numerous candidates, including the likes of pre-Open era players Richard Sears, Bill Larned and Bill Tilden, as well as even Molla Mallory. As far as Open era greats, he notes the worthiness of the likes of Chris Evert (while noting that another, Serena Williams, isn't even finished with her career yet, so...), Jimmy Connors, New York native John McEnroe, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi and even Roger Federer. Bodo notes USTA managing director of corporate communications Chris Widmaier has stated that thee is no current plan to *sell* (Hisense Arena, anyone?) naming rights, but that there are so many worthy candidates with U.S. tennis ties that it'd make it difficult to choose should it be decided that additional courts would be given new names.

Of course, there *is* another issue, as well. As we've seen this year in the case of Margaret Court, it can be a risky venture to name anything for any living (or dead, for that matter) human, what with the inherent foibles and changing attitudes that could create trouble and/or controversy later. The MCA controversy regarding Court's over-the-top anti-gay commentary doesn't get much press anymore, but wait until January. As it was, Bodo notes that Jimmy Connors originally groused about Ashe getting naming rights over himself, considering he won just one Open title to Connors' five. So there's another human trait that would have to be dealt with when considering former champions still in the public eye.

As Bodo says, "It's a tough call. But maybe Widmaier has a point: let sleeping champions lie."

Still, it's an interesting exercise to attempt to determine who might be worthy -- and "safe" -- for such an honor. For me, the list would go something like this:

1) Althea Gibson

Here's why:

2) Helen Wills
3) maybe a joint Navratilova/Evert "Rivals" (to borrow the title of that great book about their friendship & careers) Court title
4) ...or just wait until the end of the Williams era

Or, hey, why not name a court (a colorful one, I'd assume) for someone no one could possibly argue about: the late Bud Collins.

SEEN/TWEETED ON DAY 1: The Accidental New Yorker

LIKE ON DAY 1: "Are you following me?"

WEEKEND STUPIDITY ON DAY 1: How could the USTA be so disorganized that it wasn't prepared to move #3 Roger Federer into Andy Murray's vacated #2 slot in the draw when he pulled out on the weekend, rather than keep him in the top half and move #5 Marin Cilic there? With the likes of Djokovic, Wawrinka, Raonic and Nishikori already having pulled out, the men's draw is a bit "star-deficient" as it is, and, did anyone really think the Scot was likely to play this tournament, even after he was still "in play" as of draw day?

It might not have happened anyway, but now a Federer-Nadal final is *impossible* for, really, no good reason.


Of course, she lives on here with the "Kimiko Cup for Veteran Achievement."

...and, finally... the Colt Big Apple Third-Time's-a-Charm Challenge is underway.

Here are the latest details of the plan by Backspin's resident Professor (endearing wink, wink) to make slam predictions (somewhat) obsolete...

How to Pick the US Open Winner

At the final slam of the year, there are challenges to finding trends. There is also the question as to what numbers to use, such as should I use the IW/Miami hardcourt results, or just stick with the summer series? The answer is only the summer, leaving us with only 6 tournaments. 3 of those played after Wimbledon were on clay, so if you are wondering why Bertens and Kontaveit are not on the list, that is why.

With using the standard procedure of taking the winner, runner up, and SF, there are only 24 women to start from, barring duplicates, I have to widen the pool just a bit. You see, the USO winner has reached the QF or better 14 of the last 20 years. So we will use the 2016 USO QF, too.

Also, Cinci has become really relevant. Since it moved up to a Premier in 2009, the USO winner has reached the QF or better there every year except one (Pennetta-2015). So add their QF, also. Sadly I can't use the numbers from San Diego, as they used to serve the same purpose. Between 1997-2006, the San Diego winner won the USO six times.

28 women start: Peng, Hibino, Wang, Han, Keys, Vandeweghe, Muguruza, Bellis, Makarova, Goerges, Dodin, Petkovic, Svitolina, Wozniacki, Stephens, Halep, Pliskova, Kerber, S.Williams, Konjuh, Sevastova, Vinci, Kuznetsova, Konta, Mertens, Gavrilova, Radwanska and Cibulkova.

If you notice, the last 4 are from the most recent New Haven tournament. Let's see if they stay in.

The USO is a little different in that unseeded women have had success. Clijsters won, plus Vinci-2015, and V.Williams-1997, have both reached the final. So the unseeded will not be the first cut. That will be Serena.

The first 3 slams have shown what it takes to win. Williams beat 3 Top 20 players at the AO, Ostapenko 2 at the French, and Muguruza 3 at Wimbledon. So at the very least, you should be expected to have at least 2 Top 20 wins this season to continue. So this cuts Hibino, Wang, Han, Dodin, Petkovic, and Vinci. Three more get cut, Mertens is still playing (as of this formula), but has 0 regular Top 20 wins (0-7), though she had 2 in Fed Cup. Go figure. Anyway, Gavrilova is at 26, so even if Mertens had won in the NH semis, she could have only picked up 1. She is out. So is Kerber, the former #1 who doesn't have any Top 20 wins on the season (0-8). The last cut for this round is a mild surprise in Keys, as her two wins against Vandeweghe were 24 and (gasp) 21.

Down to 18, so I need to make one more cut. So we go by the Serena Streak. We had a 12 year streak, starting from after Myskina in 2004 in which everybody that won a slam had beat Serena at least once. Modifying that somewhat, it still leads me to believe that in most cases, Ostapenko not included, you need to have beaten a number 1 to win a slam. So we lose our last 5 here, starting with the youngster in Bellis, then Konjuh and Sevastova. Peng deserves so notice for being around long enough to have played Davenport when she was #1, but lost to her, as well as Henin, Safina, Williams, and Wozniacki. The last cut might surprise you, as it is Stephens. She beat Serena, but when she was #3. Just has a boatload of losses to Williams and Azarenka when they were #1.

So the baker's dozen? Vandeweghe, Muguruza, Makarova, Goerges, Svitolina, Wozniacki, Halep, Pliskova, Kuznetsova, Konta, Gavrilova, Cibulkova, Radwanska.

Makarova is the only unseeded player, but has 8 Top 20 wins, Pliskova leads this group with 12. Lowest? Cibulkova with 2, counting last week, when she beat #20 Pavlyuchenkova, and Radwanska with 3, her wins? #19, #20 and #20.

Goerges and Radwanska got their #1 wins vs Wozniacki, and half (actually 6) got their wins vs. Kerber since the USO last year.


Meanwhile, Galileo West and I completed a U.S. Open Slam Draft roster selection process about two weeks ago (hence, Muguruza not being selected higher, as it was during the Cincinnati title run), with points being given throughout this slam for each win (as in 2 with advancement to the 2nd Round, 3 to 3rd, 4 to 4th, 5 to QF, 6 to SF, 7 to Final, and 10 for the title).

Here are our rosters (w/ our initial selection rankings), just to "keep us honest."

1 Wozniacki
2 V.Williams
3 Keys
5 Makarova/Vesnina
8 Konta
9 Stephens
11 Muguruza
12 Vandeweghe
13 Chan/Hingis
14 Bellis
16 Makarova
17 Garcia
19 Kasatkina
20 Peng
21 Kontaveit
22 Konjuh
24 Kvitova
25 Goerges
27 Vondrousova
28 Puig
29 Dodin
30 Sevastova

1 Svitolina
2 Ka.Pliskova
4 Kerber
5 Halep
6 Kuznetsova
10 Ostapenko
12 Cibulkova
13 Pavlyuchenkova
14 Siniakova
17 Barty/Dellacqua
18 Barty
19 Bouchard
21 Sharapova
25 Safarova
27 Giorgi
29 Mertens
30 Strycova
- Vinci
- Petkovic
- Vekic (replaced Shvedova)
- A.Radwanska (replaced Stosur)
- Vesnina (replaced Azarenka)

2 Kontinen/Peers
3 Cilic
5 Bryan/Bryan
6 Kubot/Melo
7 Thiem
8 Dimitrov
9 Bautista
11 Sock
14 Isner
15 Harrison
16 del Potro
17 Johnson
19 Tsonga
25 Schwartzman
26 Cuevas
27 Carreno Busta
30 Pouille
- Paul
- Fritz
- Medvedev
- F.Lopez (replaced Evans)
- M.Zverev (replaced Murray)

1 A.Zverev
2 Nadal
3 Berdych
10 Goffin
11 Querrey
12 Muller
13 Herbert/Mahut
14 Anderson
15 Khachanov
18 Shapovalov
20 Kyrgios
22 Ferrer
24 Edmund
25 Gasquet
26 Chung
27 Fognini
28 Young
29 Coric
30 Kuznetsov
31 Thompson
- Youzhny (replaced Nishikori)
- J.Murray/Soares (replaced Raonic)

We'll see how this goes.

The quiet moments. Arthur Ashe Stadium. US Open

A post shared by Maria Sharapova (@mariasharapova) on

2009 Vania King, USA (def. Yakimova)
2010 Francesca Schiavone, ITA (def. Morita)
2011 Monica Niculescu, ROU (def. Mayr-Achleitner)
2012 Anna Tatishvili, GEO (def. Foretz-Gacon)
2013 Carla Suarez-Navarro, ESP (def. Davis)
2014 Aga Radwanska, POL (def. Fichman)
2015 Mariana Duque, COL (def. Kenin)
2016 Cagla Buyukakcay, TUR (def. Falconi)
2017 Kristyna Pliskova, USA (def. Eguchi)
AO: Monica Puig, PUR (def. Tig)
RG: Petra Kvitova, CZE (def. Boserup)
WI: Wang Qiang, CHN (def. Chang)
US: Kristyna Pliskova, USA (def. Eguchi)

2005 #28 Flavia Pennetta, ITA (Schruff)
2006 #15 Anna-Lena Groenefeld, GER (Rezai)
2007 #29 Samantha Stosur, AUS (Cornet)
2008 #24 Shahar Peer, ISR (Li)
2009 #25 Kaia Kanepi, EST (K.Chang)
2010 #8 Li Na, CHN (K.Bondarenko)
2011 #5 Petra Kvitova, CZE (Dulgheru)
2012 #27 Anabel Medina-Garrigues, ESP (Hradecka)
2013 #29 Magdalena Rybarikova, SVK (Mayr-A.)
2014 #25 Garbine Muguruza, ESP (Lucic-Baroni)
2015 #7 Ana Ivanovic, SRB (Cibulkova)
2016 #30 Misaki Doi, JPN (Witthoeft)
2017 #32 Lauren Davis, USA (Kenin)
AO: #4 Simona Halep, ROU (Rogers)
RG: #31 Roberta Vinci, ITA (Puig)
WI: #31 Roberta Vinci, ITA (Kr.Pliskova)
US: #32 Lauren Davis, USA (Kenin)

Sydney Campbell, Vanderbilt
Hayley Carter, North Carolina
Sara Daavettila, North Carolina
Francesca Di Lorenzo, Ohio State (NCAA #1)
Alexa Graham, North Carolina
Brienne Minor, Michigan (NCAA champion)
Ingrid Neel, Florida
Ena Shibahara, UCLA

JAN: Serena Williams, USA
AO: Serena Williams, USA
FEB/MAR: Elina Svitolina, UKR
I.W./MIAMI: Elena Vesnina, RUS
1Q: CZE Fed Cup Team
APR/MAY: BLR Fed Cup Team
MAY: Chan Yung-Jan/Martina Hingis, TPE/SUI
RG: Alona Ostapenko, LAT
2Q Clay Court: Simona Halep, ROU
JUN: Petra Kvitova, CZE
WI: Garbine Muguruza, ESP
2Q Grass Court: Garbine Muguruza, ESP
JUL/AUG: Madison Keys, USA
AUG: Garbine Muguruza, ESP
[2017 Weekly POW Award Wins]
3...Karolina Pliskova, CZE
3...Elina Svitolina, UKR
2...Johanna Konta, GBR
2...Garbine Muguruza, ESP
[2017 Fed Cup Overall Weekly MVP Wins]
(Feb) WG 1st Round: Timea Bacsinszky, SUI
(Feb) WG II: Rebecca Sramkova, SVK
(Feb) Zones: Ivana Jorovic, SRB
(Apr) WG SF: Aliaksandra Sasnovich, BLR
(Apr) WG PO: Elise Mertens, BEL
(Apr) WG II PO: Simona Halep, ROU
(Apr) Zones: Tamara Zidansek, SLO
(Jun) Zones: Valentini Grammatikopoulou, GRE
(Jul) Zones: Monica Puig, PUR
[2017 Fed Cup Overall Weekly Captain Wins]
(Feb) WG 1st Round: Kathy Rinaldi, USA
(Feb) WG II: Matej Liptak, SVK
(Feb) Zones: Dias Doskarayev, KAZ
(Apr) WG SF: Eduard Dubrou, BLR
(Apr) WG PO: Barbara Rittner, GER
(Apr) WG II PO: Sylvain Bruneau, CAN
(Apr) Zones: Andrej Krasevic, SLO
(Jun/Jul) Zones: Yu Hiu-tung, HKG
[Most 2017 Fed Cup Team MVP Wins]
2...Aliaksandra Sasnovich, BLR (1st Rd./SF)

TOP EARLY-ROUND (1r-2r): xx
TOP QUALIFYING MATCH: Q2: Jamie Loeb/USA def. (PR) Vera Zvonareva/RUS 7-6(4)/5-7/6-4 (3:16; delay after fan faints as Loeb to serve out at 5-4 in 3rd)
TOP EARLY-RD. MATCH (1r-2r): xx
FIRST VICTORY: Kristyna Pliskova/CZE (1st Rd. - def. Eguchi/JPN)
FIRST SEED OUT: #32 Lauren Davis/USA (1st Rd. - lost to Kenin/USA
IT ("?"): xx
LAST QUALIFIER STANDING: Day 1 wins: Kozlova/UKR, Vickery/USA
LAST WILD CARD STANDING: Day 1 wins: Kenin/USA, Ar.Rodionova/AUS
LAST BANNERETTE STANDING: Day 1 wins: Kenin, Stephens, Vickery, V.Williams

All for Day 1. More tonight.


Blogger Diane said...

I like the idea of naming a court after Bud Collins, but Althea Gibson is also a fine choice. As for Evert and Navratilova--it's very hard to believe that either of them would ever do anything to make us all sorry that courts were named for them.

Mon Aug 28, 07:25:00 PM EDT  
Blogger colt13 said...

I would not be opposed to Evert and Navratilova sharing one. Like how some basketball and football stadiums give one name to the arena and one to the court.

The afternoon went nuts. Tums aka Lucic-Baroni was at it again, plus Dodin/Parmentier and Golubic/Babos.

Stat of the day-1-The amount of times in the last 35 years of the US Open that a former slam winner met a current Top 5 player-before tonight.

It was recent, as in 2013, when Serena Williams played Francesca Schiavone.

Tale of the tape: At the time
Record 59-5
Titles 8

Record 20-20
Titles 1

The stats clearly favored Williams, and the final scoreline did too. Williams won 6-0, 6-1, on her way to the 2nd of her 3 consecutive titles.

Mon Aug 28, 09:00:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

Charleston does that. It's the Family Circle Stadium (they still own the event) and the Billie Jean King Court. That was pretty easy to pull off, but I don't know how you'd determine who would be what with Chris and Martina.

Mon Aug 28, 09:43:00 PM EDT  
Blogger colt13 said...

Diane, thanks for the info.

Stat should have read in the first round.

Sharapova's dress made her look like a gladiator going into the arena for battle.

Tue Aug 29, 10:41:00 AM EDT  

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