John Isner beat Tomas Berdych 3-6 6-4 7-6 (9) to win the Winston-Salem Open in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA
Petra Kvitova beat Maria Kirilenko 7-6 (9) 7-5 to win the New Haven Open at Yale in New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Roberta Vinci beat Jelena Jankovic 7-5 6-3 to win the Texas Open in Dallas, Texas, USA
“It’s going to take something special from my opponent to win. That’s kind of how it feels right now.” – Roger Federer, saying he is playing good enough to win the US Open.
“There are 128 players here who have plenty of motivation to perform their best in the Grand Slam, the last major of the year, so I’m sure that they want to cause some upsets in the opening round.” – Novak Djokovic, when asked about his repeating as US Open champion.
“I don’t put any pressure on myself. If I win, that would be great. If I lose, I realize I’m going to go home and be devastated. But there’s always tomorrow.” – Serena Williams, on winning the US Open.
“Of course she’s the favorite. But everybody is still in the draw.” – Maria Sharapova, when asked about Serena Williams’ chances of winning the year’s final Grand Slam tournament.
“I can’t sit here and say I’m the best ever. I’m not. I’m not worthy of that title. I’m just Serena. I love playing tennis and I’m good at it. Just because I’m good at it doesn’t make me the best.” – Serena Williams.
“Obviously this place is magical for me. I have had so many beautiful memories. I love the surface, I love the atmosphere, and I’m excited. I’m not really thinking about retiring yet. I’m still focusing on trying to be in the best shape that I can be.” – Kim Clijsters, a three-time US Open champion who has said this will be her last tournament.
“It’s a great feeling. Both my titles this year are the exact same titles I won last year. Defending a title is not easy. There’s pressure on you coming into the tournament so I think for me to do that, at both Newport and here in Winston-Salem, it should help me a lot going forward in the coming years. I’m absolutely thrilled.” – John Isner, after successfully defending his title in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA.
“It’s unbelievable. I mean, play three tournaments in a row and win two. It’s great for me. I hope it will continue in the US Open.” – Petra Kvitova, who won her second tournament in three weeks.
John Isner is putting his stamp on a couple tournaments. For the second time this season, the American successfully defended a title, this time the Winston-Salem Open in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA, with a 3-6 6-4 7-6 (9) victory over Tomas Berdych. The towering American fired 22 aces in his victory, sealing the win with an unreturnable forehand after saving three match points. “There were certainly some tense times all throughout the match,” Isner said. “At times probably wasn’t the prettiest of tennis, but I was able to gut it out and am very, very proud of that.” The second-seeded Berdych led 5-3 in the tiebreak. He netted a backhand volley on his first match point. Isner then saved another with a service winner. Berdych reached his third match point at 9-8, but Isner save that one with an ace. “I won a couple of matches, which was the goal and the (reason) why I wanted to come here,” Berdych said. “I made it pretty successful, but still one I was missing.”
Just in time for the US Open, Petra Kvitova is showing the game and form that took her to the Wimbledon title in 2011. The Czech star won her second WTA tournament in three weeks, this time capturing the New Haven Open at Yale where she bested Maria Kirilenko in the title match. Kirilenko led the first set 5-2 before Kvitova rallied. “I just played, not thinking about the shots, about the tactics, just put the ball into the court,” Kvitova said. “Then it was 7-5. Surprise.” Kvitova enters the year’s final Grand Slam tournament with a 12-1 match record on hard courts, the same surface as that played at the US Open. She also clinched the US Open Series championship after winning her first title of the year in Montreal and reaching the semifinals at Cincinnati. That makes the left-hander eligible for a bonus of up to USD $1 million depending on how she does at the US Open.
Three times Roberta Vinci had faced Jelena Jankovic on the other side of the net. All three times Jankovic, once ranked number one in the world, was successful. Their fourth meeting, however, was different. Vinci beat Jankovic for the first time in her career, winning the Texas Tennis Open in Dallas, Texas, USA. Jankovic served for the opening set at 5-4, only to have her Italian opponent reel off six straight games, closing out the first set and taking a 3-0 lead in the second. Jankovic took the next three games, leveling the set 3-3, before Vinci went on her own run of three straight games. “It was a tough week, a tough draw, a tough final,” Vinci said. “I’m so happy I won.”
Sisters Venus and Serena Williams have had a wonderful summer playing doubles together. They teamed up to capture Wimbledon, and then returned to the grass courts of the All England Club to snare the gold medal at the London Olympics. They asked for and received a wild card entry into the US Open women’s doubles where they will be seeking their first US Open doubles championship since 2009. Also gaining entry into the women’s doubles via the wild card route was three-time singles champion Kim Clijsters, who is playing in what she says will be her last tournament. Clijsters will pair with another Belgian, Kirsten Flipkens. Two other teams received wild cards into the women’s doubles: NCAA champions Mallory Burdette and Nicole Gibbs, along with and all-American team, Melanie Oudin and Grace Min.
Ryan Harrison and his younger brother Christian were among the men to receive doubles wilds cards.
SET FOR BONUS
Novak Djokovic and Petra Kvitova could wind up with the biggest checks in tennis. The two won the Emirates Airline US Open Series and will compete in the US Open for bonuses of up to USD $1 million. The winners of both the men’s singles and women’s singles will receive USD $1.9 million. If either Djokovic or Kvitova wind up capturing the year’s final Grand Slam tournament they would receive a USD $1 million bonus. The second and third place finishers on the men’s and women’s sides will compete for $500,000 and $250,000, respectively. John Isner finished second and Sam Querrey third for the men. Li Na finished second in the women’s standings, while Dominika Cibulkova was third. In 2007, Roger Federer collected the biggest paycheck in tennis history – USD $2.4 million – when he won the US Open and the Emirates Airline US Open Series. In 2005, Kim Clijsters also captured both the US Open and the Emirates Airline US Open Series, winning $2.2 million – the largest purse in women’s sports history.
The field of the 21st annual Delray Beach International Tennis Championships next February will be highlighted by the three top-ranked American men as well as the world’s number one doubles team. John Isner, Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish have all committed to play in the Delray Beach, Florida, USA, event, as have brothers Bob and Mike Bryan, who captured the men’s doubles gold medal at the London Olympics. Isner is currently ranked 10th in the world, while Roddick is 21st and Fish 24th. Roddick played his first professional match in the Delray Beach tournament in 2000, while Fish in 2009 is still the only top seed in tournament history to win the title. “The 2013 tournament will mark the first time in our history where we will have the top three-ranked American singles players in our draw,” tournament director Mark Baron said. “We’re excited to be bringing back the wildly popular Bryan Brothers, who are already legends in the sport. This is the just the beginning of an epic year for us.”
Six members have been named to the ATP’s new competition committee, including 1996 Wimbledon champion Richard Krajicek. The committee will recommend possible changes to men’s professional tennis and will advise the ATP Board of Directors. In announcing the committee, ATP Executive Chairman Brad Drewett said he wants to “’explore new and creative ideas for enhancing the competition and presentation of the sport.’” Besides Krajicek, others named to the committee include ATP executive vice president Gayle David Bradshaw, Sergia Palmieri, Graham Pearce, Lorne Abony and Weller Evans. Drewett appointed Krajicek, the tournament director of an event in the Netherlands, and Bradshaw. Palmieri and Pearce were selected by the ATP Tournament Council, while Abony and Weller were selected by the ATP Player Council.
SENT TO L.A.
Instead of calling lines at the US Open, Lois Goodman has returned to Los Angeles to face charges of murdering her husband. Alan Goodman was killed April 17 in his condominium in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, USA. At the time, his wife told police her husband apparently had an accident while she was officiating at a tennis match. Police now say they early on considered the death to be suspicious. An arrest warrant was filed on August 14, and the 70-year-old Lois Goodman was taken into custody in New York City, where she was to begin officiating at the US Open.
Dallas: Marina Erakovic and Heather Watson beat Liga Dekmeijere and Irina Falconi 6-3 6-0
New Haven: Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond beat Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka 4-6 6-0 10-4 (match tiebreak)
Winston-Salem: Santiago Gonzalez and Scott Lipsky beat Pablo Andujar and Leonardo Mayer 6-3 4-6 10-2 (match tiebreak)
New York: www.usopen.org
ATP World Tour: www.atpworldtour.com/
International Tennis Federation: www.itftennis.com
TOURNAMENTS THIS WEEK
(All money in USD)
MEN and WOMEN
US Open, New York, New York, USA, hard (first week)
TOURNAMENTS NEXT WEEK
US Open, New York, New York, USA, hard (second week)
$106,332 AON Open Challenger, Genova, Italy, clay
US Open, New York, New York, USA, hard (second week)