Archive for July, 2009

kirilenko, out!

July 13, 2009

Unlike the No. 1 ranking… Thanks to Chris for tipping us off about Caro Wozniacki being the new face of the adidas by Stella McCartney line. I guess the folks in Portland finally realized that while Maria Kirilenko has the best face/bod combo to show off the British designer’s amazing pieces, the Russian’s game (and thus the fashion show that should come with it) has relegated Stella’s designs to the outer courts (and early rounds) of most tournaments.

And all that will change now that the Woz has exclusive opportunities to wear the collection, starting with the fall/winter 2009 tennis range — including apparel and shoes — at this year’s U.S. Open.

“I feel like I have everything any fashionable female tennis player always dreams about: cutting-edge adidas technologies combined with Stella’s unique designs that actually perform,” said the current world No. 9 via a press release.

And with this partnership, McCartney finally gets to design for someone who wins. “It’s very rare for a fashion designer to dress one of the top 10 players in the world. I couldn’t be more thrilled and happy to be given that opportunity.”

Along with key styles from the tennis collection (Performance Dress, Hot Pant, Bra, etc. in pinks and purples), Caroline will also wear the Skynde, whose Barricade V base is redesigned in a seed pearl/dark grape/white colorway.

She’s been with adidas for a while, of course, joining the company’s Player Development Program back in 2007. The PDP helps nurture young tennis talent through a unique mix of advice and support, giving an extra helping hand towards building a successful career. And FYI, Wozniacki has two titles this year: the MPS Group Championship (on clay, in Florida) and the AEGON International (grass, Eastbourne).

More later: We’re in the process of getting a lookbook for the collection. When it shows up, we’ll post!

What about Maria? Wozniacki will be the only player wearing adidas by Stella McCartney. From the folks at adidas: “Maria Kirilenko continues to be an excellent tennis ambassador for the adidas brand and remains part of the adidas tennis family. From the U.S Open onwards Maria will move out of the range and start wearing the adidas Competition tennis products.”

(image courtesy of adidas)

feeling childish

July 13, 2009

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Did you know that Lindsay Davenport had popped out her second little one a couple of weeks ago in California?! Well, we missed that one, too. The Girl Next Door now has a little chica of her own: Lauren Andrus Davenport Leach was born June 27th, two years after Lindsay and husband Jon Leach had little Jagger.

Pencil Lauren in as Wimbledon champ, 2027. She’s got some good genes.

Meanwhile, former American touring pro Ashley Harkleroad also gave birth recently, having a baby boy, Charles Hooper, on March 25th. The next day, Harkleroad’s web site reported the birth, and promised Ashley would go from “having a baby to serving aces in 91 days.” Wise words from a former Playboy cover girl, right?

Harkleroad’s 91 days were up the day Lauren Andrus was born. But still, no activity from Miss August 2008. She’s been inactive since losing four straight matches last summer.

Keeping things kiddy, Sesil Karatantcheva has slowly been making her way back into the upper echelon of the women’s tennis tour. If you recall, a 15-year-old Karatantcheva took out Venus Williams at the 2005 French Open, then was under fire and eventually banned for steroid use in 2006. Her excuse for the ‘roid rage? “I’m pregnant.”

She created all sorts of craze on the WTA, especially when she claimed there was no baby belly because of a mysterious miscarriage. Since, however, Sesie has served her ban and is now making her way back at the ripe old age of 19. She’s currently ranked 144th, after qualifying for Wimbledon and falling in the first round to Alisa Kleybanova.

Finally, it would seems as though the two girls who made the most noise at this year’s Championships are also the two youngest in the top 100. Michelle Larcher de Brito has revived Monica SelesGruntgate from the early ’90s, and Melanie Oudin was America’s sweetheart for a hot second last month in London. Oudin is 17 and ranked 70th, while Larcher de Brito is 16 and ranked 76th. It’s a career high for both women… ahem, girls.

(photo by travelseminar via flickr.)

it must be summer time!

July 13, 2009

We’ve just received word that Andy Roddick will be participating in this year’s Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, to be held on August 29, 2009. As you know, the annual event kicks off the U.S Open. American Idol Winner Jordin Sparks and comedian Will Ferrell will also be performing and participating at the full-day tennis and music festival. (Other talent include “rising stars” Honor Society and Justin Bieber.)

On the ‘tube: The event will be broadcast on Sunday, August 30 at 12pm EST on CBS. For more information and tickets click here.

weekend crumbs

July 10, 2009

Playing 16-14 fiddle: While most of the tennis world was focused on one 16-14 final-set match, there was a second last weekend at Wimbledon. Two American teens, Jordan Cox and Devin Britton, both highly-touted, staged a fierce semifinal encounter in the Boy’s Singles draw. Cox, of Bolletieri roots, came out on top 6-3, 6-7(5), 16-14.

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Cox (on the right) told his hometown paper in Duluth, Minn., that the two boys are “practically brothers.” Wouldn’t it be nice to see an Andy-and-James second coming in American tennis? We’ll see about that for now, as Cox lost in the finals. Britton is a hitting parter for the American Davis Cup team this weekend in Croatia.

Sania saved: From a crazy, weirdo-stalker. Jeez, hasn’t this girl been surrounded by so much controversy for such a mediocre career? Oh, and PS, girl it totes engaged now, too!

Just stop: Justin Gimblestob has been been Tweeting waaaaaaaaaaaay too much. Look, Justin. We know that you used to play tennis and were decently good. But in all actuality, no matter how much you Tweet, you’ll always be known as the guy who made super inapprope comments about Anna K on the radio.

HOF-Bound: Monica Seles will be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame this weekend. We Grunt You, Mons.

There’s no “I” in Team Tennis: The WTT has kicked off this past week for another summer of fun-time tennis. Anyone headed to watch some ball played on multi-colored courts?!

we know what the bird’s been tweeting

July 10, 2009

serena-williams-mission09a

So word on the street is that Serena’s big surprise is the launch of her new skincare line, Mission.

Contest: From now until July 21, Serena is hosting a contest to see what you can do in 90 seconds. (We’ve been told about what we can do in 90 seconds; it’s just depressing!) Enter at www.SerenasMISSION.com for the chance to meet Serena and win two VIP tickets to one of her upcoming tournaments. Other prizes include an autographed tennis racquet and $1,000 gift basket of Serena’s personal favorites. Contest updates via her Twitter feed (@serenajwilliams).

TiVo that s**t: Serena’ll be on HSN on July 23rd and 24th to sell…

- Oxygen-Active Daily Facial Cleanser, engineered with a unique, self-foaming oxygenating technology that cleans impurities, removes makeup, nourishes and renews skin in only 90 seconds. Antioxidant properties help fight free-radical damage and environmental aggressors. $39.99.

- Sugar Body Scrub (Honey Sugar) — Refined sugar granules suspended in a moisturizing gel that gently exfoliates the body, leaving the skin smooth, hydrated and healthy. $29.99.

- Restorative Body Butter (Honey Sugar) — A rich blend of natural extracts and moisturizing agents formulated to deliver superior nourishment and emollients to the skin to protect and hydrate. $24.99.

- Lip Balmer SPF 15 (Pomegranate) — A long-lasting lip balm in Serena’s favorite flavor, featuring moisturizing cocoa butter and soybean oil to hydrate and nourish lips. Added bonus – the formula is preservative and paraben-free. Also available in Pink Lemonade. $3.99

(image courtesy of Mission)

what could it beeeeeeee?!?!

July 8, 2009

Stay tuned to find out…

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(screengrab via twitter.com)

who wore short shorts?

July 8, 2009

Fred Perry capitalized on what would have been the 100th anniversary of its namesake tennis pro by outfitting its current spokesathlete — Andy Murray — will a full kit inspired by company designs from the ’50s and ’60s.

Andy’s items all have his monogram stitched under Fred Perry’s iconic laurel logo. The pieces in white are the polo (with green laurel and tipping), the short shorts, and a leather bag; in ivory are a cable v-neck weather and a cable slip-over. We love that two other sponsors, RBS and Highland Spring, get real estate even on the sweater.

Fun fact: As a smoker, Perry originally wanted to use a pipe as the company’s logo but Tibby Wegner, his manager, said he “didn’t think the girls would go for it” so Perry agreed to go with the laurel instead.

Shoes: Andy and the folks at Nike dressed him in the non-RFed version of the Zoom Vapor VI. Buy: $115, nike.com.

Scoreline: Murray lost in the semis of Wimbledon to Roddick in the battle of the Andys. The four-setter was pretty tight: 4-6, 6-4, 6-7 (7), 6-7 (5). Alas, the Brits will have to wait until next year to possibly crown one of their own as a Wimbledon title winner.

More: A few more shots, including a pic of his bag, his practice tees, etc.; all after the cut…

who wore it better?

July 8, 2009

Wimbledon champions Serena Williams and Roger Federer both sported post-victory t-shirts at their respective pressers. So TSF is wondering: Who do you think wore it better?

serena-roger-wimbledon09aRoger’s shirt reads “There is no finish line” and Serena’s says “Are you looking at my titles?”

(photos via getty images)

kirilenko likes ‘em hairy

July 8, 2009

Maria Kirilenko is blogging from Bastad this week. What we know so far? She’s not into manscaping.

You’re out of luck, Verdasco!

Scoreline: Maria beat sixth-seeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the second round of the Collector Swedish Open Women and will now face top seed Caroline Wozniacki in the quarters. See draw here.

looking into the crystal watch

July 8, 2009

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Who knew Rolex was a top-notch fortune teller?!

I was flipping through one of my favorite magazines, The Economist, yesterday while riding the subway in NYC and noticed a full-page ad from Rolex featuring Wimbledon’s picturesque Centre Court. I’m always interested how advertisers deal with tennis people, places and things; how they are depicted, what sort of editing they do – but this ad looked like just a plain old shot of tennis’ most famous court.

There was Roger Federer, standing on one side of the next, serving up the ball to… oh, wait, is that Serena Williams?! Yes, that’s right. On one side was Mr. Fed himself, and the other – Serena.

Seems as though the people at Rolex, who put together this ad long before the 2009 fortnight began, have been peering into their crystal watches to predict the future. Serena and Roger were champions this year, something even few tennis experts got right in their pre-slam predictions.

Upon further inspection at the company’s web site, I was greeted by a freshly-produced, full-page spread of Federer holding the Wimbledon trophy.

I sure hope those ad people at Rolex are getting some bonuses this week. They deserve them.

UPDATE: The issue of The Economist went to print June 18th, days before The Championships even began.

Federer’s shot after the cut. (more…)

courting partners

July 7, 2009

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TENNIS.com, the site of TENNIS Magazine, show-pieced a feature article written by Donal Lynch on the ins and outs of tennis partner (read: ‘dating’) web sites.

While at first glance we scoffed at the article, Lynch’s sarcasm and humor comes out well in his writing, and it’s a funny tale of trying to both date and find quality hitting partners through a variety of sites. At the end of the article, Lynch gives his rating of each of the site’s services – from Craigslist to Tennisopolis.com

We wonder if that’s how Ana Ivanovic and Fernando Verdasco started dating in the first place, anyway? “Sexy, male in search of hitting partner who wears as little clothing as he does.” Too bad it didn’t last.

(screengrab from tennis.com)

a wardrobe evolution

July 7, 2009

After a slight hiccup, the folks at Athletic DNA are back on track by hiring NCAA coach Peter Smith as they’ve begun to finalize junior sponsorship contracts. Also, ADNA (not to be confused with ANTA) is now peddling goods online.

The highlight of their current offerings is this Ignite T, which mascot Robert Kendrick wore during his stint at Roland Garros earlier this year.

The tee — made with moisture-wicking, anti-bacterial material — fit a little too baggy on our skinny frame (but just right if you’ve got guns like Nadal). I guess we’ll have to let the loose fabric billow in the wind. At least we’ll stay dry doing it.

Buy: athletic DNA Ignite T, $49.95.

wimbledon flashback: the imminent death of vulnerability

July 7, 2009

TSF op-er Michael Shaw graciously gave us his thoughts going into this historic Wimbledon’s second week. Unfortunately for him (and maybe for us, since we probably pissed him off for slacking), it took until today for this post to go up.

Read on about serve-and-volleying as a kiss of death, the grass court major’s coverage on TV, and his pick for this year’s men’s titleist (he picked right!). (more…)

art in line

July 7, 2009

It’s no secret: the queue at Wimbledon is not for the faint-hearted. But I must give kudos to the tournament organizers (or the queue organizers? Are there such people?!) for putting together such an organized, cohesive operation known as The Queue. It was 1,000 yards of unruffled movement, and any major event would feel good about that.

For about 40 of those yards, the famed Australian painter Rolf Harris was a grand distraction from the ‘How far away are we’s?’ and the ‘How much longer’s?’

The Championships, along with sponsor HSBC Bank, commissioned Harris to do ten paintings of former Wimbledon champs. The paintings were displayed gallery-style along the line, allowing queuers to take in the works of art while they inched closer to the front gate.

(photo by Nick McCarvel)

shimmering serena

July 7, 2009

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Fresh off her Wimbledon victories, Serena Williams took to the late-night stage as a guest on the David Letterman show last night in New York.

Williams shimmered in a golden, flowing dress and a gold-tinted pearl necklace. She made sure that Letterman handed her the right racquet (“The Wilson one, it’s cuter”) and the two laughed about grunting on the women’s tour and her double victory (singles and doubles) at this year’s Championships.

Full video is here.

(screengrab via cbs.com)

death and dancing

July 7, 2009

Horrifically sad news today about Mathieu Montcourt, the French tennis player who has died at the age of 24.

Meanwhile, the City of Los Angeles and much of the world will have its eyes on the Staples Center, where a memorial will be held for the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson.

Tennis players mourned the loss of Jackson while at Wimbledon, including Serena Williams and Roger Federer. However, just over two months ago, Novak Djokovic payed his own tribute to Jackson while at the ATP stop in Monte Carlo.

In true Djoko fashion, Novak danced “Thriller” to add to his cadre of impersonations. It may have been a little premature, but you can see he worked hard on his moves (‘boy can dance!’), which is a testament to MJ himself.

We’ll miss you, Michael.

a true le sigh: montcourt dead at 24

July 7, 2009

Let’s hope this had nothing to do with him getting banned by the tour for betting on other matches…

French tennis player Mathieu Montcourt dies at 24

(Click on the link above, or read on after the cut…

jic…

July 6, 2009

Just In Case you were wondering how Andy Roddick is feeling after his heart-wrenching loss to Mr. 15-Slams himself:

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Oh, and Just In Case you missed the link that Paddy put up the other day on ‘british bruises‘, here’s a sneak peek. Click on the photo to get more of a glimpse of Team Murray.

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(screengrabs from twitter.com and andymurray.com, respectively)

tears for andy

July 5, 2009

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Regardless of who you were rooting for today, you had to feel a bit bad for Andy Roddick following his 16-14 in-the-fifth loss to Roger Federer, the man who has now beat A-Rod on 19 of 21 tries.

In his post-match interview with Sue Barker, Roddick was beyond brief, answering his questions quickly and striding back to his place at the net, obviously overcome with defeat and grief in what was the longest Wimbledon finals match ever.

Federer (who can blame him?), was beaming in his interview. Though he tried to console Andy with a “I’ve been there too, buddy,” it didn’t quite seem to work. Will Andy ever win Wimbledon? Another slam? We sure hope so…

A photo of a near-tears Roddick during Fed’s interview. Video is here.

(more…)

british bruises

July 2, 2009

Well, once again it’s been a brutally bad fortnight for the Brits, with only Andy Murray remaining in the main draw for a chance at The Championships. Perhaps if he’s victorious his coach, Miles Maclagan, will take his shirt off in celebration? We can dream, can’t we?

Picture 1Meanwhile, home-grown future champ Laura Robson went down – and hard – yesterday, losing 8-6 in the third set of her third-round girl’s singles match. Robson made a strong showing in the first round of the women’s draw, losing to Daniela Hantuchova in three sets. She officially announced her junior career is over. Let’s hope this gal is the real deal- there sure has been lots of hoopla about her, right?

Andy’s bro, Jamie, is also carrying the nation’s flag (and the Scottish flag) in Mixed Doubles, the title which he won two years ago in 2007 with Jelena Jankovic. This time he’s paired with doubles specialist Liezel Huber, a South African who now plays for the US. Meanwhile, the entire Britsh press corps was lamenting the failure of its nation’s tennis while I was in London last week, and even the Wall Street Journal has weighed in on how little success the LTA is cranking out.

(photo by getty images)


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