August 31, 2008

An observation....

It just dawned on me that each of Serena's opponents in her 1st three matches was part of a doubles team that she and Venus defeated in rout to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Gold Medal: 2nd Round (Olympics) - Morita / Sugiyama (3rd Round US Open), Qtr (Olympics) - Vesnina / Zvonareva (2nd Round US Open) and Semi (Olympics) - Bondarenko / Bondarenko (1st Round US Open).

US Open: 4th Round (Monday)


4th Round
Serena Williams (USA)[4] vs Severine Bremond (FRA)
Head-to-Head 0-0
(Featured Night Match)
Arthur Ashe Stadium Court (7pm EST)


US Open on USA Network

August 30, 2008

Serena in New York!


Serena stops Sugiyama; advances to 4th Round

Serena is on a roll. She appears to be dialed in early; no "playing her way into form," she's taking care of business. Serena defeated Ai Sugiyama of Japan, 6-2, 6-1, to advance to the fourth round of the US Open. In watching the match on the CBS network, I was disappointed that much of this match was not televised. Some "bright" individual(s) felt switching to a men's match on the Grandstand warranted more TV coverage. You DirecTV subscribers have it made because you get to choose which tennis match you would like to see without fear of interruption.

CBS showed Serena holding in her opening service game, 1-0; then went to commercial (and then to the men's match Murray vs Mulzer) and when they returned to Serena's match she was rushing the net to go up 4-1. Sugiyama held to make it 4-2. Next match sighting was at 5-2; commercial (switch match) back to Arthur Ashe court and Serena wins the first set 6-2. If that "match coverage" offeneded you, you might have drop-kicked the tv for the 2nd set.

After the break, "coverage" returns at 1-1, 30-30 (2nd set) w/ Serena serving and holding to go up 2-1. Another commercial and the score is now 3-1 and THAT'S THE LAST WE SEE OF THAT MATCH. They just "had" to show the remaining portion of the match on the Grandstand between Murray and Mulzer. Oh, they did show the final point and hand shake at the net during a quick DAY'S HIGHLIGHTS clip. Serena's match did not last long and I do understand that it is only fair to "share" the "tv coverage" but come on, to cut coverage on a match at 3-1 in the 2nd set (and NEVER return to it)? Get a clue! How hot am I right now?

August 29, 2008

US Open: 3rd Round (Saturday)


3rd Round
Serena Williams (USA)[4] vs Ai Sugiyama (JPN)[30]
Serena leads Head-to-Head 3-0
3rd match of the day on Arthur Ashe Stadium Court
Matches begin at 11:00am EST


US Open on CBS Network

August 28, 2008

Serena advances while I rant

Serena was stunning in her 2nd Round match defeating Elena Vesnina, 6-1, 6-1. Serena only lost her serve when she was serving for the match at 5-0. For the majority of the match she served at 80+ percent but ended the match with around a 73% serving stat. (Quite impressive). Serena advances to the 3rd Round where she will meet Ai Sugiyama.

My only gripe was the commentary. Ted Robinson actually makes my blood boil when it comes to commentary on Serena. HE NEVER HAS ANYTHING POSITIVE TO SAY ABOUT SERENA but he takes every effort to try to tarnish her legacy. During the match he actually said, "people look at her like she's this champion." I wanted to reach out and touch him at that very moment. His classic line is always, "it has been "x" number of years since she did this or that." He is truly Debbie-Downer when it comes to Serena. Of all that Serena has accomplished (Career Grand Slam in Doubles and Singles, 2 time Olympic Gold Medalist, former world #1 and numerous other accolades) he never mentions the positive. He will go out of his way to say something negative. I have a strong dislike for Ted Robinson (the commentator) during Serena's matches.

For just about the entire 2nd set they (Ted, Tracy and John) totally disrespected the featured night match: they switched to Sam Querry's match for a few (and also another men's match highlight), next they switched to a live interview with Coin, the 188th ranked player who defeated #1 Ana Ivanovic, and then Ted ("Makes My Blood Boil) Robinson, Tracy Austin and John McEnroe went on a tirade about men's tennis, ALL DURING SERENA'S MATCH. I would have enjoyed this match more if I had just pressed the MUTE button. How tacky and inconsiderate that they would act in such a reckless and blatantly disrespectful manner. I expected Tracy to at least try to sway the conversation back to the match at hand but she seemed content "carrying on" with the guys. Mary Carillo, Pam Shriver, Mary Jo Fernandez or even you or I could have provided more suitable commentary. Focus people!

Oh, to wrap this up with a smile, thanks for the win SERENA!!!! Keep up the good work!

Serena's Hitting Partner Speaks

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August 27, 2008

US Open: 2nd Round (Thursday)

2nd Round
Serena Williams (USA)[4] vs. Elena Vesninia (RUS)
Head-To-Head 0-0
Arthur Ashe Stadium @ 7pm EST

US Open on USA Network

August 26, 2008

US Open: Serena advances to 2nd Round

Serena launched her bid for a third U.S. Open title with a ruthless 6-1 6-4 demolition of Ukraine’s Kateryna Bondarenko first round action Tuesday. The fourth-seeded American delivered a typically muscular display of power serving and searing groundstrokes to wrap up victory in just under an hour (57 minutes) on the Arthur Ashe Stadium court. U.S. Open champion in 1999 and 2002 and runner-up to her sister Venus in 2001, Williams breezed through the opening set in just 19 minutes before breaking her opponent in the 10th game of the second to seal the win. My match highlights were the AWESOME "kicker" (Serena's kick serve) in the 2nd set at 3-3, 15-0 and the phenomenal defensive rally at 5-4, 0-15 on Bondarenko's serve. Keep up the good work Serena!

A Celebration: A Night of US Open Champions

Former US Open winners gathered at Arthur Ashe Stadium (Monday night) to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Open era. Absent were: Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras, Jimmy Conners, Justine Henin, Kim Clijsters, Steffi Graf and Patrick Rafter.

August 25, 2008

Celebrating 40 years of the Open Era....


Serena waves to the crowd during the opening night ceremony at the 2008 US Open. Serena was one of the former US Open champions who was recognized during the 40 Year Open Era on-court celebration at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

US Open: 1st Round (Tuesday)


1st Round
Serena Williams (USA)[4] vs. Kateryna Bondarenko (UKR)
Head-To-Head 0-0
3rd match of the day at Arthur Ashe Stadium
Matches begin at 11:00am EST

US Open on USA Network (11am - 5pm EST)

Williams Sisters join the DSRL

They've conquered England, were a dynamic duo in Beijing this August and are preparing for the U.S. Open...but that's not enough for tennis greats Serena and Venus Williams! The power pair announced today that they're taking on a "second sport" and putting their "twisting, licking and dunking" skills to the test, as the newest members of the Double Stuf Racing League (DSRL).

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The sisters join famous quarterback brothers Peyton Manning and Eli Manning, the league's first "two sport" athletes, who launched the DSRL earlier this year. The DSRL puts a new spin on the classic Oreo and milk ritual by bringing friends and families together to "lick race" - a friendly competition where racers see who can twist, lick and dunk a single Oreo Double Stuf cookie and drink a glass of milk the fastest.

"Oreo cookies and milk were a tradition in our house growing up, and my sister and I fondly remember twisting, licking and dunking them together," said Venus. "It was only natural to continue that tradition as adults, which is why we jumped at the chance to be a part of the DSRL." "And because we love a friendly rivalry, it'll be fun to show the Mannings what real DSRL competition is like! They're going down," added Serena.

Both sibling pairs will appear in a national ad campaign set to debut today during the opening rounds of the U.S. Open. The new ad will kick off marketing activity to take place through 2009.
For more information, visit: http://www.nabiscoworld.com/oreo/dsrl/home.aspx

August 24, 2008

US Open: Bad Call Ushers in New Era (2004)


TENNIS Magazine (Sept.'08): US Open Preview (page 58)

30 Years, 30 Moments: Vulgar, exhilarating, noisy, democratic, greed-fueled, glamorous: These are only a few of the descriptions given to Flushing Meadows since it became host to the US Open in 1978. TENNIS looks back at 30 moments that have shaped the modern Open, for better and for worse.

# 23 - A Bad Call Ushers In A New Era (2004)

It takes a lot for John McEnroe to say that a call was the worst he'd ever seen in his years at the U.S. Open. But this was indeed a very bad call. Serena Williams and Jennifer Capriati were in the third set of their quarterfinal. Williams hit a backhand winner inside the sideline. Except that chair umpire Mariana Alves didn't see it that way. She overruled the call and awarded the point to Capriati. Open officials later issued an apology to Williams, who lost the match, and didn't send Alves back on court for the rest of the tournament. More important, the error strengthened the case for using instant-replay technology - which had been available only on TV broadcasts up to that point - to review line calls. Two years later, the replay challenge system made its Grand Slam debut at the Open.

* Later in the final set, replays showed at least two other incorrect calls that went against Williams.

US Open: 40 Years of Memories and Magic

2001 Prime-Time Winner:

With their vivacity and athleticism on the court and their indomitable presence off of it, Venus and Serena Williams have brought millions of new fans to tennis and increased the exposure of the sport with their every victory. For those reasons and more, it seemed only fitting that these two inimitable stars should have the chance to sparkle under the lights of the FIRST US Open women's final to be held in primte time. The evening became an event, as for the FIRST time in the history of the tournament, sisters would square off for the title. A sold-out crowd reveled in the electric atmosphere and a TV audience or more than 22 million tuned in to the action, making it the most-watched programming on television that Saturday night. Venus beat Serena, 6-2, 6-4, to win her second consecutive US Open title, at once boosting her resume' and the profile of America's Grand Slam.

- Taken from page 18 of the Sept/Oct 2008 issue of USTA Magazine.

Serena's in THE OPEN BOOK

Serena is one of the former US Open Champions included in the book, The Open Book - Celebrating 40 Years of America's Grand Slam (Bonus DVD). The Open Book celebrates the history, the excitement, and the emotion of America's greatest tournament, an engaging tribute to America's premier tennis event, the largest attended sporting event in the world, and its champions.

You can purchase the book from the US Open shop online: http://www.usopenshop.org/product_p/usp8b09.htm

From The Open Book - At the US Open, where the world's toughest tennis is played, no competes more fiercely than the Williams Sister known simply as "Serena". Her extraordinary will and powerful ground game are buttressed by one of the most potent serves in women's tennis. When in form she plays only one way - in dominant fashion - with "dominant" and "fashion" being two words that can be applied to her in equal measure.
  • Women's Singles Champion: 1999, 2002
  • Women's Doubles Champion: 1999
  • Mixed Doubles Champion: 1998

Serena @ Arthur Ashe Kids Day


Lindsay and Serena @ Arthur Ashe Kids Day

Remember that Arthur Ashe Kids Day will air today on the
CBS network @ 12pm EST

Serena @ Friday Night's US Open Party

Serena attended the 2008 US Open Player's Party (friday night) at New York City's Empire Hotel. The 8 time Grand Slam Champion grabbed attention in this belted turqoise outfit. Serena will be attempting to win the US Open for the third time in her stellar career. The US Open was Serena's FIRST Grand Slam title. It has been a while since Serena last lifted the US Open trophy. She won the title in 1999 and 2002. Serena's thoughts: "I'm really excited for the Open," Serena said. "I feel like I'm playing really solid and much better than I have been all year, to be honest. I really look forward to it."

Manning Brothers vs. Williams Sisters

NEW YORK — The Williams sisters are taking on the Manning brothers in a race to see who can put away Oreo cookies the fastest. Venus and Serena Williams, winners of 15 majors combined, used U.S. Open media day Saturday to announce their plans to join the Double Stuf Racing League. It matches a move by Peyton and Eli Manning earlier this year.

Both pairs of siblings will appear in a national ad campaign starting Monday, opening day of the final Grand Slam event of the season. “They’re going down,” said Serena, who won Olympic doubles gold with her sister in Beijing. The Mannings, the winning quarterbacks in each of the past two Super Bowls, launched DSRL earlier this year, creating a friendly competition to see who can twist, lick and dunk an Oreo cookie and drink a glass of milk the fastest.

Serena: NEW World #3

Serena Williams (the 2 time Olympic Gold Medalist) has risen to #3 according to the WTA rankings. Serena has played much tennis this year and is within striking distance of the #1 ranking. How close you may ask? If Serena wins the US Open (the final Grand Slam of the year which starts on Monday), she captures the #1 ranking. Does she want it? You bet she does! COME ON!

Roger Federer and Serena Williams


Tennis players Roger Federer and Serena Williams attend the US Open Wilson Party at Mansion on August 23, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for Wilson)

August 23, 2008

Another pic from Arthur Ashe Kids Day

Arthur Ashe Kids Day will air Sunday (8/24) @ 12pm EST on the CBS network.

Check out the hardware in this picture!!

Lindsay Davenport, Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal make an appearance at Arthur Ashe Kids Day. Can you believe that this picture alone is responsible for 172 singles titles, 28 Grand Slam singles titles and 61 doubles titles? Quite an impressive stat. If I am looking at this picture correctly, I see the following:

Lindsay: 55 singles titles, 3 grand slam singles titles and 37 doubles titles
Roger: 55 singles titles, 12 grand slam singles titles and 8 doubles titles
Serena: 31 singles titles, 8 grand slam singles titles and 12 doubles titles
Rafael: 31 singles titles, 5 grand slam singles and 4 doubles titles

Do you see what I see?

Williams Sisters at Arthur Ashe Kids Day

The Williams Sisters at a press conference during Arthur Ashe Kids Day
About Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day:
Presented by Hess and produced by the USTA, Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day honors tennis legend Arthur Ashe and continues his mission of using tennis as a means to instill in kids the values of humanitarianism, leadership and academic excellence. Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day introduces children of all ages to the great sport of tennis while bringing families together for a fun, interactive experience. A portion of the proceeds from Arthur Ashe Kids' Day benefits the USTA NJTL (National Junior Tennis League). Arthur Ashe, along with Charlie Pasarell and Sheriden Snyder, founded the NJTLTM in 1969. Ashe envisioned NJTLTM “as a way to gain and hold the attention of young people in the inner cities and other poor environments so that we can teach them about matters more important than tennis.” Since then NJTLTM has grown to over 500 chapters serving over 200,000 youth each year, making it one of the USTA’s largest community-based offerings.

August 22, 2008

Serena's practicing for the US Open


Serena signs autographs after a practice session

Serena attends Nike Sportswear at 21 Mercer - Block Party Opening

Nike Sportswear Opens First Store in SoHo in New York

Nike NKE today announced the opening of its first Nike Sportswear retail store at 21 Mercer Street in SoHo, New York City, offering exclusive access to premium products, an elevated retail experience, and a new customization experience called Nike Sportswear Bespoke, where consumers can work with Nike designers to customize premium Nike Sportswear footwear.

“The NSW collection is steeped in Nike’s sports heritage and remixed with cutting edge engineering, craftsmanship, and modern design,” said Dermott Cleary, Vice President, Nike Sportswear. “We’re putting the best of our entire collection under one roof, in New York City, so consumers from all over the world can access it.”Opening August 22nd, this stand-alone store will be the only location globally to carry the complete Nike Sportswear NSW collection, which includes seasonal exclusive 21 Mercer products.

August 21, 2008

US Open Draw: No All-Williams Final

The 2008 US Open Women's Singles Draw has been released, however, there will not be another Venus Williams-Serena Williams final. The sisters landed in the same quarter of the women’s singles draw at the Official Draw Ceremony Thursday at the Times Center in Manhattan. The Williams sisters met in the 2008 Wimbledon final, which Venus won in straight sets. For the US Open, however, the two would meet far earlier in a potential quarterfinal matchup with Serena the No. 4 seed and Venus the No. 7 seed.

In her opening match, Venus will face Samantha Stosur of Australia and Serena takes on Kateryna Bondarenko of the Ukraine. Serena could meet No. 20 Nicole Vaidisova in the third round and Venus could meet No. 9 Agnieszka Radwanska in the fourth round. As a whole, the women’s draw came out very top-heavy with top seed and reigning French Open champion Ana Ivanovic and No. 6 seed and Olympus US Open Series winner Dinara Safina meeting potentially in the quarterfinals. The winner could then face either Williams sister in the semifinals. To view the complete singles draw, visit www.usopen.org.


Serena's Olympic experience - (Espn.com video)

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Serena's post Olympic Interview (Fox.com) - Video

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