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2013 US Open Quallies, Final Round

25 Aug


Here are more pictures from the last round of US Open Quallies. There is a mix of today’s stars practicing as well as the players from the qualification tournament. Let’s test out the tennis crack whore in you as I will not label any of the pictures. How many can you name? You can look at the “tags” if you want some help.

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I will not make you guess who is in the following two pictures because I think she deserves special attention. This was the first time I had the opportunity to watch a 20 year old Serbian woman named Aleksandra Krunic play, and I am expecting big things from her. Ladies and gentleman, please meet Aleksandra Krunic.

Aleksandra Krunic US Open 2013

Aleksandra Krunic serving. See the ball?

Aleksandra Krunic of Serbia

Fluid service motion by Aleksandra Krunic

 

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2013 US Open Quallies Day 1

23 Aug

Here are just a few random pictures from the first day of the 2013 US Open qualification tournament. Just a couple of the day’s highlights were 16 year old American Jared Donaldson beating Farrukh Dustov and Julia Cohen moonballing and cramping her way to victory over Tadeja Majeric in the last match of the night. It is truly amazing how many people attend the quallies now, and it has really become an event unto itself. I remember no more than 10 years ago when hardly anyone was there and you had to make sure to bring your own food and drink. Now the food court is open and the stands are packed.

I will be back on Friday and will try to post more later, but here are just a few pics for now:

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Gerald Melzer – yes, it’s Jurgen’s baby brother.

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Boy Westerhof – Best name in tennis?

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Little Noah Rubin was very focused.

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New in 2013 – Heineken House above the food court.

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Jared Donaldson had composure way beyond his 16 years.

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More Baby Melzer trying to return Jarmere Jenkins’ serve.

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Melzer frustrated. Jarmere was just “TOO BIG. TOO BIG.” (annoying fan cheer)

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Ksenia Pervak takes out #1 seed Shahar Peer 64 76(3)

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Jarmere Jenkins about to serve TOO BIG….

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Farrukh Dustov was one frustrated man losing to a boy named Donaldson.

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Amir Weintraub held off little Noah Rubin.

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Old Frenchman Marc Gicquel had no reason to hide.

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Marc Gicquel out-steadied Thiago Alves 64 in the 3rd.

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Giovanni Lapentti serves in a losing effort versus Ginepri on Court 17

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No radar gun, but Dr. Ivo was hitting bombs.

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Jan Mertl ran Renzo Olivo ragged.

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More of golden boy Jared Donaldson

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So composed and so polite. Big Donaldson fan here.

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Jared Donaldson spent a lot of time signing autographs and posing for pictures.

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Julia Cohen, fierceness in more ways than one.

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Tadeja Majeric was getting so frustrated by Julia Cohen.

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Renzo Olivo returning so far back like he was still on clay.

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Good form from Olivo, but just not ready for primetime.

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It’s hard to believe that former #14 Shahar Peer has to qualify for US Open. And harder to see her lose, but Ksenia Pervak is no pushover either.

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It’s no Wimbledon, but there is still nice shrubbery in Flushing.

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Thomas Fabbiano is a feisty scrapper who eliminated Antonio Veic.

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American teenager Viktoria Duval is what I like to call a fun-ness!

Cox and Ball Play

20 Aug

Well if TCW had any credibility with the tennis community, this post may erase all of that. But when Carsten Ball and Jordan Cox play for the first time like they are right now in the quallies of Winston-Salem, all bets are off….and all puns are on. As I write this entry, Ball has bagged the first set but as you know sometimes it takes a while for Cox to heat up. Ball has served amazingly so far with 14 aces, and he looks quite motivated to beat Cox. Ball seems to be hanging low for some reason as Cox just came back to serve for the second set. That’s enough Cox and Ball play for me, let’s watch this master class on how to write and deliver good Ball material:

Even before I noticed the Ball-Cox match, I showed my immaturity with a laugh when I read the scoreline of another quallie match in Winston-Salem. Christian Harrison beat William Boe-Wiegarrd 6-4 6-0, and I had to let out a chuckle because I envisioned another SNL sketch with Barbara ‘Wawa’ Walters trying to pronounce Beauregard. I hope people are enjoying this light-hearted fun, but be prepared for serious tennis coverage next week as we feature the US Open Qualifying Tournament. Get ready and get psyched!

Breaking News: Cox got a bit stiff trying to serve out the second set and Ball just won the match in a second set tiebreak by a score of 6-2 7-6(4). I guess it’s the same old story of choking Cox that we have seen so many times before.

PS – I hope our readers and especially the players take no offense to this childish fun. Jordan Cox in particular is a player that we featured very early at TCW, and we hope to be writing about him and his tennis success stories for many years to come. As well as Devin Britton, Carsten Ball, Christian Harrison, and maybe William Boe-Wiegarrd too.

‘The Rivalry’ Has A New Rival

8 May

Rafa-Nadal-and-Novak-Djokovic

“The Rivalry” in men’s tennis has meant Roger v. Rafa for the past five years or so, but Rafa v. Nole has produced some of the highest quality tennis I have seen in my lifetime.  For now here is a video of just a taste of their magic today.

I won’t provide any others spoilers for those tennis fans who may have DVR’ed this match to spend the day with their mothers. Happy Mama’s Day!

Kimiko & Kremer: Old Ladies Rule!

1 Mar

With a combined age of 75, Qualifier Anne Kremer of Luxembourg faced off against #7 seed Kimiko Date-Krumm in the 1st round of Kuala Lumpur.  The younger but lower-ranked Kremer at the age of 35 beat 40 year-old Kimiko in a 3rd set tie-break. Don’t you love old lady drama?

Kudos to Kimiko and Kremer, it’s so cool to see these vets forge on. Bravo!

And Now A Word From Their Sponsors…

10 Jan

Tennis-X featured a recent Spanish shampoo commercial from Fernando Verdasco, and this got me to thinking that it might be fun to share that one with you as well as a few other international commercials from our tennis stars.  Let’s start with Dasco who has already been spotted in Melbourne with a few extra pounds but without the flowing locks.

Nike with Federer and Murray.  Um, Murray from Flight of the Conchords.

Rafael Nadal reunites with Pau Gasol for a recent Nike ad.  And then take a look at their less serious spot for Time Force from a few years back

The secret behind Kimiko’s comeback?  Kirin Beer, of course.

Don’t worry about Slumping Sania, this is just one of her many product deals.

Novak also never met a product that he didn’t want to endorse.

Show us your O face?  Really?  Come on, Prince.  Really?!?!?!?  Still not sure how this made it on to U.S. airwaves a few years back.  Starring Davydenko, Sharapova, the Bryan Brothers, Korolev, Querrey, and Jankovic among others.  O3 = Holes?  Really?!?!?!

That’s all for now, but I have way more where these came from.  Well, so do you….have fun surfing YouTube!

Hopman Cup: The Romantic Comedy

7 Jan

I never intended for this site to be a gossip rag, but who doesn’t love a good tennis love story? Well not many if you count the box office receipts of Wimbledon, the cute rom-com starring Paul Bettany and Kirsten Dunst. But they should re-tool that movie and call it Hopman Cup or perhaps Mixed Doubles. The question is who will be our romantic leads: Novak Djokovic and Ana Ivanovic or Nicolas Mahut and Kristina Mladenovic?

Rumors of romance for both of these mixed doubles pairings have been bandied about, but there is no confirmation from either couple.  Novak and Ana have that great rom-com back story of knowing each other since they were 5 years old, and while tennis brought them together it is also what keeps them apart from each other except for a few mixed tourneys a year.  That might explain Ana’s service toss issues during the Grand Slams.  Too soon?

Nico and Kristina have the same 10+ year age difference as Paul and Kirsten’s characters in Wimbledon, but I think you will see from these pictures that they have much better on-screen chemistry.

Everybody Loves Mahut could be the more apropos title this week as not only does he seem to have love from young Kristina, but his bromance with John Isner is flourishing as well.  Take a look at the following video of the end of the Mahut/Mladenovic vs Isner/Mattek-Sands match to see the cutest match point ever at around the 6:00 mark.  Kristina looks for Nico’s protection from the booming Isner serve at 9-8 in the tiebreak. 

Even sullen Andy Murray had to crack a smile when Nico the Charmer jumped over the net in order to distract Andy Murray from putting away a sitter volley.  It was actually quite scary to watch as it looked like they would collide, but a hug from Nicolas Mahut cures all.  Mahut lost that match against Murray in two tie-breaks and should have at least won the first as he was serving for it. 

If not romance, I want a happy ending this week for lovable loser Mahut.  There are two discretionary Wild Cards left to be awarded for the 2011 Australian Open.  Just like the 2010 US Open, the French Federation looked over Nicolas Mahut to award their reciprocal wild card to a younger and lower-ranked Frenchman.  First Guillaume Rufin, now Benoit Paire.  What does Nicolas Mahut have to do to catch a lucky break?  Is it blood that you want? 

Unnecessary Diving: The Nicolas Mahut Story