Monday, September 14, 2020

Weekend Tennis Diary

Happy to see that we successfully made it through the 2020 U.S. Open without (much) incident. Naomi Osaka confirmed her status as the present and future of the game with a come-from-behind victory over sentimental favorite (and mom) Victoria Azarenaka. 

 The men's final was also a come-from-behind endeavor -- and a roller coaster ride for the ages -- that saw a cramping Dominic Thiem outlast Alexander Zverev by the hair of his chinny chin chin, 2-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (6). 

There are a couple of ways to look at this result: My gut reaction was that Thiem couldn't handle the pressure of being the favorite but lucked out by encountering an opponent even more afraid of his own (winning) shadow than himself -- a la Andre Agassi vs. Goran Ivanisevic at Wimbledon 1992. (Zverev was up two sets and a break -- and both men served for the title but couldn't close it out.) A more charitable interpretation is that winning a major is a lot harder than it seems -- a testament to just how incredible the Big Three are for having won 20, 19 and 17 of them. The reality probably lies somewhere in between, so I'm coming away from this most unusual Grand Slam event happy that they both have this experience under their belts, knowing they will each probably be better prepared next time. (Congrats to them both!)

(Did anyone notice that in their respective finals, Osaka did exactly what Azarenka did to Serena, and that Thiem did exactly what Zverev did to Pablo Carreno-Busta?)

Elsewhere at the event: 

Unseeded duo Mate Pavic of Croatia and Bruno Soares of Brazil defeated No. 8 seeds Wesley Koolhof of the Netherlands and Nikola Mektic of Croatia, 7-5, 6-3, to capture the men’s doubles title. This is the second U.S. Open title in men’s doubles for Soares and the first for Pavic.

Although these boys came up short, it was a lot of fun to watch.

And while Azarenka and Serena Williams weren't able to win one for the Motherhood, Vera Zvonareva, also a mom, and Laura Siegemund won the women's doubles title Friday, beating the third-seeded team of Yi-Fan Xu and Nicole Melichar 6-4, 6-4.

Vika coach and hot physio(?) have a lot to be happy about

I thought this was Mischa Zverev but he turned out to be another thick man in Sasha's box. (Anyone recognize him?)

UPDATE: Damian figured out it was Sergei Bubka, who has caught my eye BEFORE!

Other happenings:

Oscar Otte of Germany captured the Challenger in Aix-en-Provence on Sunday, outlasting Thiago Seyboth Wild of Brazil 6-2, 6-7(4), 6-4. 

Close but no Brazilian cigar

Reilly Opelka nursed his first-round loss wounds by playing some table tennis

Robert Farah is in Rome and ready

Christian Harrison took a break from hanging out with Cesar Ramirez to practice

Reunited and it feels so good?

A maskless Karen in Rome

The Italian stallion returns 

Tommy's new 'do is adorable ...

as is his ability to "double fist" ...

Vienna sausages: Marko Andrejic and Lucas Miedler 

Stan Wawrinka faces a wildcard or lucky loser in Rome

Holger Vitus Nødskov Rune and Quentin Halys give cryotherapy a whirl

Miomir Kecmanovic on Sunday became the second #NextGenATP player this year to capture his maiden ATP Tour crown. The 21-year-old defeated Yannick Hanfmann to capture the Generali Open trophy in Kitzbühel.

Austin Krajicek and Franko Skugor captured their maiden ATP Tour trophy as a team on Sunday, beating Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 7-6(5), 7-5 at the Generali Open in Kitzbühel.

Why was Lloyd Glasspool shopping instead of watching Liam?


J.J. Wolf thanked his barber for his lovely locks. Still no explanation from the young American about his curious hand signals, of which there is another DISTURBING example.


JP Aragon said...

The post match hug shot is really sweet

David K said...

super exciting semis and finals, glad now that the tournament happened, was kind of routing for Azarenka till I just read she knows the autocrat ruler of Belarus personally--bye!

Anonymous said...

RE: Mistaken Mischa pic. When the camera went to that guy I knew Id see him on KIT212 today. Even with my glasses my sight isnt the greatest but I definitely noticed him.