Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Swing Swag Tuesday (Updated)

We have a winner!!! See bottom of this entry.

To help celebrate the kickoff of the U.S. Open, this afternoon I'm giving away a DVD of The Tennis Channel's recent "Signature Series" documentary about Martina Navratilova, autographed by the legend herself.

The special is compelling and moving as it captures Martina talking more honestly and candidly about her biological father, her defection and her coming-out process than I've seen anywhere else. (I cried -- repeatedly.)

For those of you who lucky enough to have The Tennis Channel -- god help tennis fans whose cable companies don't offer it! -- then you've probably seen that Martina is busy providing commentary, lending her one-of-a-kind insight to the action. While Martina has certainly had her share of dubious moments in her personal life, it can't be stressed enough how much her simply being out has helped the gay movement -- not only in women's sports but across the planet.

To enter to win this fab DVD, be the first person to answer the following question: Martina and Tracy Austin played to a deciding third-set tiebreaker two times. The 1981 U.S. Open is well-documented, with Martina double-faulting to lose the match. But what made the final point of their 1978 quarterfinal at the Virginia Slims of Dallas so unusual? (Send your answer THIS ADDRESS and put MARTINA in the subject line.)

UPDATE: Normally when I have a giveaway, I get dozens of responses to my trivia questions right away. So when I only got one incorrect answer yesterday, I went to my tennis-obsessed friends and family to ask if the question was too hard. Only one of them knew the answer -- and it wasn't even exactly the answer I was shooting for -- so I was thinking of a new question when this e-mail appeared in my inbox. (We have a winner -- and I think I'm in love!)

Hey Kenneth,

Austin won the first set 6-3, Navratilova the second 6-2. The third set went to 6-6 and then into a nine-point tie breaker. Martina took the first two points, Tracy won the next four. Austin, serving for the match at 4-2, lost the point with a backhand down the line that was far wide. On the next point Austin, incredibly, came to the net behind her serve, something neither she nor anyone else would normally do against Martina Navratilova in such a situation. Austin hit a sure winner of a forehand volley down the line, but the left-handed Martina dived for it and saved the point with an astonishing forehand passing shot. Match point, 4-4. Again Tracy came to the net, and this time she caught Martina flat-footed in the ad court with a perfect cross-court volley.


Kansas City, MO

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