Archive for the ‘exhibition’ Category

the next tennis event at msg is set for 3/5/12

September 7, 2011

Mark your calendars: The next BNP Paribas Showdown, the annual tennis event at New York’s Madison Square Garden, will feature two best-of-three exhibition matches for its fifth iteration: up first will be three-time major winner Maria Sharapova against World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki; the men’s match will be an exo between Roger Federer and Andy Roddick. This will be the first time that Maria and Roddick are playing in the Garden.

This event also celebrates “Tennis Night in America” (can they play this on the jumbotron, please?), a nationwide campaign to raise awareness for the sport in the U.S.

Info: Tickets start at $50 and go on sale Monday, October 3 via Ticketmaster. Sign up for pre-sale alerts at tennisshowdown.com.

hipster tennis? sure, for a day

June 27, 2011

SMASH!-tastic: For all the attention it gets for being a tennis town, New York hardly has a lot to claim when it comes to tennis that happens on the island we all (well, most of America, that is) think of first when we think about the city: Manhattan. Courts are hard (and expensive) to come by, and availability — good luck, tookums. But a couple of weekends ago, downtown Manhattan not only got its tennis on for the day, it did so in fashion. Gargyle and United Bamboo fashion, that is.

The boutique (Gargyle) and fashion line (United Bamboo) teamed up to host SMASH!, a day-long tournament, for a second straight year, this time venturing a bit west from the East River Park courts to those at Seward Park, on the fringes of Chinatown. SMASH! is what you would expect tennis in Chinatown to be like: fun, quirky, oh-so hipster-esque, relaxed and above all — cool.

Above: a wall of celebrating. TSF contributor and fashion extraordinaire Troy Venechanos and I ventured to the day’s worth of events to check things out. Troy snapped some TSF-worth shots while I chatted with Don Vu of Gargyle about the event, which the store has approached a bit like throwing a dinner party at their house. “Tennis is one of the inspirations for Gargyle and you can see that in a lot of the lines that we pick,” Vu told me while we took in some of the round robin tennis. “We decided to take that part of us and make a tournament out of it. For fun. It’s pretty casual, but once you get on the court it’s pretty competitive. It’s relatively mellow overall, though.”

All you need is you: The mixed doubles teams (15 of them total) were all told to dress up for the occasion, some going all out and others choosing toned-down looks. But this is no Wimbledon folks: these outfits are colorful. The teams were broken into groups of five, playing one another in a best-of-three match-tiebreak format (first to 10 points) where the top team from each group would advance to the semifinals and one wild card (Team Lisicki?) would be chosen to participate as well.

TSF Vault: Gargyle | Gargyle wraps up SMASH! on its blog

“There are similar events [around New York],” Vu told me. “For the most part there is nothing like this for tennis. It’s a social event. We’re not raising money for anything — it’s just to hang out and have fun. It’s friends and friends of friends who are playing. We run Gargyle just down the street.” While Gargyle operates a few blocks away, the Hester Street Fair was happening just next door, so Troy and I trotted over a couple times throughout the day to snack on donuts (from Wonder City) and a specially-made macaroon called the SMASH! Sandwich. The guys at Macaron Parlour and Melt Bakery knocked heads (at Gargyle’s nudging) to create a tennis-ball looking macaroon that was downright delicious. This pup below is drooling over the thought of such things.

See the SMASH! Sandwich and more on the Gargyle event after the cut. (more…)

summer monday? spend it with monica and jimbo

June 17, 2011

Courier serving things up at the Rock in 2009. (Getty photo)

NYC greenery: Plenty of New Yorkers (and Americans, we presume) have “summer Fridays.” You know the idea: it’s freakin’ nice outside so employees get to peace out for all or part of Friday to frolic in the sun. While we appreciate such a gesture from the higher ups, before you go off sunbathing and boozing before 5 pm today, you might want to re-consider utilizing those free hours this coming Monday.

It is, after all, day one of Wimbledon, which means you could wake up at your usual ungodly time and take in some of ESPN 2’s coverage of day one at The Championships. After a few hours of tubing, you’ll be itching to get outside (it is summer, after all!) and we’ve got just the solution for you: Monica Seles and Jim Courier, playing some grass-court tennis at Rockefeller Plaza. Seles and Courier hit the court at noon on Monday for what should be an entertaining hit and giggle, former ESPN commentator and Tennis Channel buff Brett Haber will emcee.

Can’t make it Monday? There’s more: Play (yes, you! Play!) on Manhattan’s only grass court Monday through Friday. To reserve a court call (855) 688-7715. Can’t find the right bounce on the grass? Prince has pros who will be there to touch up your game. The sched? Monday 4 to 5 and Tuesday through Friday noon to 1 and 5 to 6. Plus: Get your racquet re-strung Monday through Friday between 11 and 1; eat some special strawberries and cream all week long; and play some Wii “Grand Slam” tennis. Find out all the info of HSBC’s Wimbledon at Rockefeller Plaza here.

nike’s ‘clash of champs’ exo

January 30, 2011

Nike is pulling out all the stops for its just-announced March 8 exhibition featuring four superstars: Serena, Rafa, Maria and Roger. The exo itself is being held in Eugene, Oregon, traditionally known as a running town and mecca for all things University of Oregon related (including an almost national football title). Tickets go on sale this Friday at 10 AM.

(screengrab via matthewknightarena.com)

short balls: it’s not over until the (small) lady sings

October 13, 2010

Justine Henin made her return to Belgian television earlier this week by singing and dancing on a variety TV show. Singing the song “Now It’s Time” on the show Cap 48. Was that lip synching we saw there, JuJu? Might have to refer to this video to figure it out. Hopefully Lady Henin didn’t re-injure her elbow in said dance routine, in which she wore a bright white pant suit, black dance shoes and had her hair put up. Now we get why she wants her phone on a desert island: she has the Autotune app.

Justine is scheduled to take on Kim Clijsters in an exhibition in December, though she hasn’t made her 2011 schedule public yet. Guga Kuerten is due to play an exhibition in his home country of Brazil in December as well, flying down former rival Andre Agassi for a little hit and giggle. Fame bound? Meanwhile, Andre headlines the 2011 ballot for the International Tennis Hall of Fame. The last time Andre was in Newport? To help honor his wife Steffi during her own induction in 2007.

With the tennis season winding down, the exo season is picking up. The Belgians will do battle in their home country and Guga has Andre going south. Roger has invited Rafa up to Switzerland for a duel of their own, which, if the trailer runs true, will be mostly giggling and not much hitting. Stateside, no less than four exo’s will take place in November and December, with players like Anna Kournikova, Martina Navratilova, Mark Philippoussis, Mardy Fish and the Bryan Brothers participating in one event or another. (Line up: Surprise, Ariz. | Delray Beach | DC | Vero Beach, Fla.) (Exhibition info from tenniswire.org)

The season is prematurely over for a myriad of WTA ladies, including Venus, Serena and Maria Sharapova. The Williams sisters will not only miss the Season Ending Championships but also the Fed Cup finals, which they had expressed interest in playing after controversy swirled in their lack of participation in the team’s ties earlier in the year.

More of short balls – featuring short(er) balls – after the cut. (more…)

trophy watch: in asia, the week of three-setters

October 4, 2010

Malaysian Open: Fourth seed Mikhail Youzhny bagged his second title of the year by taking out Andrey Golubev 6-7 (7), 6-2, 7-6 (3) in Kuala Lumpur. “I cannot say I showed by best tennis here,” shared Youzhny, “but, although it’s good when you show your best tennis and win the tournament, it’s probably better sometimes when you don’t show your really best game but you have a really good result.” The Russian also won the BMW Open, on clay, back in May.

PTT Thailand Open: All the big players bit the dust — including Rafael Nadal and the rusty Juan Martin Del Potro, Verdasco, Melzer — leaving Guillermo Garcia-Lopez to square off against Jarkko Nieminen in the finals. The scoreline, in Gigi’s favor: 6-4, 3-6, 6-4. This was the Spaniard’s second final of 2010 and the first title. “It has been an unbelievable week for me, from the first round to the final. Every match is different. I think I played relaxed, enjoyed my game and everything was perfect. It’s hard to express what it means, I’m really happy inside.”

Toray Pan-Pacific Open: Over in Tokyo, top seed Caroline Wozniacki fended off an upset by Elena Dementieva with a 1-6, 6-2, 6-3 victory.

Exo: And Nole won an exo over Andy Roddick in Seoul. The blooper reel’s here.

(images via Getty Images)

belgian sweets

July 10, 2010

Fila created this yellow dress especially for Kim Clijsters to play in at her recent (formerly known as) “Best of Belgium” exhibition. Gotta look good for a homecoming, right? Too bad it won’t be available for sale…

If you like this dress on Kim as much as we do, you’ll be happy to know that she’s wearing more of these figure-flattering pieces (i.e., less separates) in the future.

P.S. Francesca Schiavone, please do not tease me with that jock hair of yours. I was ready to replace you with one of my Italian HOATs!

35,681 strong

July 8, 2010

Kim Clijsters and Serena Williams set a world record on Thursday, playing an exhbition before 35,681 fans at King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels, Belgium.  Serena was a replacement for Justine Henin, who pulled out of the match because an elbow injury sustained at Wimbledon.

The match was originally titled the “Best of Belgium” but didn’t turn out that way as Serena replaced Justine. Martina Navratilova was honorary chair judge, while French Open champ Francesca Schiavone was also in attendance. This was the first meeting between Kim and Serena since their infamous 2009 US Open encounter.

The previous record was set when Billie Jean King beat Bobby Riggs in the Battle of the Sexes in 1973 at the Astrodome. 30,472 people were in attendance for that brawl.

Two more shots from the record-setting exo after the cut. (more…)

bury the hatchet or fuel the flame?

June 29, 2010

It has just been announced that this coming February’s BNP Paribas Showdown at Madison Square Garden — in 2010 an event contested by Venus, Ana Ivanovic, Kim Clijsters, and Sveta Kuznetsova — will this time feature Agassi, Sampras, Lendl, and McEnroe in a renewal of their classic rivalries.

John and Ivan will play a one-set pro match (first to eight) and the Agassi/Sampras matchup will be a best-of-three. TSF’s curious to see how the latter will pan out, especially in light of Andre’s malfunction at Indian Wells this year. (Hey, if Kournikova and Hingis can kiss and make up, why can’t these two?)

But not to take away from the event’s a noble cause: to bring awareness to our sport through the “Tennis Night in America” initiative, a collaboration between BNP Paribas and the USTA.

Info: For more info about the event, to be held on February 28, 2011, visit tennisshowdown.com.

kelly ready to out-tennis ramona, jill

March 24, 2010

In the past few weeks, Real Housewife Kelly Bensimon has made a push to become the most tennis-savvy of the New York ladies, first appearing with Venus at the Billie Jean King Cup in New York, and yesterday hosting a celebrity exhibition match in Miami.

TSF spoke with Kelly’s cast mates Ramona Singer and Jill Zarin at the Night of Legends tennis event in September. We wondered who Jill might pick as a doubles partner in a re-match of the two reality stars’ tennis duel. Maybe she should consider Kelly, no?

The ladies of the Real Housewives of New York are back on the small screen with their third season of cat fights and caviar.

(screen grab via wta web site)

agassi/sampras: the awkwardness continues

March 14, 2010

Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras continued their awkward war of words at the Hit for Haiti charity event at Indian Wells on Friday. Tennis.com has a transcript version of what went down between the two in an exchange that clearly upset Sampras and saw him (playfully?) bomb a serve at Agassi.

It makes us wonder, though: what is Agassi’s deal? Sampras was playing the exhibition fun role just fine, taking a page out of Novak Djokovic‘s book by imitating Agassi’s pigeon-toed walk. It was Andre, whose book has seen wild success but was outwardly critical of several players, none as much as Sampras, who began the verbal jabs with “I don’t have any money,” referring to Sampras’s supposed poor tipping mentioned in his book.

Meanwhile, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer stood by helplessly and rather uncomfortably, Rafa saying nothing and just smiling through the whole thing while Federer tried to joke about it – which only seemed to make matters worse.

which of these just doesn’t belong?

March 1, 2010

(tsf illustration by troy venechanos)

jet-setting venus gives kelly first ticket

February 28, 2010

In the past month, Venus Williams has been all over the world. From Melbourne, she spent time in Miami before heading off to Dubai (where she won the title) and Mexico City (another week, another trophy). She arrived in New York today to do some promotion for the Billie Jean King Cup, which happens tomorrow night at the Madison Square Garden.

We couldn’t be more jealous of Kelly Bensimon, the non-tennis-playing housewife (of The Real Housewives of New York City) for getting the first ticket to this year’s event. Let’s just hope our press pass puts us close to ya, Kelkel!

After the cut: Kim and Sveta take in the Knicks game at MSG. (more…)

sunday survey: who’s your queen of the bjk?

February 28, 2010

The Billie Jean King Cup happens tomorrow night at Madison Square Garden, an event that features Venus Williams, Kim Clijsters, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Ana Ivanovic. While this is an exhibition that might not mean much on paper, there is some pride on the line (Ivanovic’s plummet; Kuzy’s ability to play with the top gals; Clijsters’s redemption for her fizzle at the AO; Venus’s continued success from Dubai and Mexico City). Don’t doubt these gals will giving it their all in the world’s most famous arena.

(photo by deleteyourself via flickr)

friday fare: food from the exo… fashion, too

December 4, 2009

The James Blake exhibition Tuesday night in Manhattan didn’t just feature top-level tennis, it also featured top-level eats. Bringing in chefs from around New York, the event had tasting and drinks from some of NYC’s most well known restaurants, including the pictured chocolate truffle tennis balls, prepared by Brian Young of Tavern on the Green. Those look delish!

John Mooney, chef at the Highland Manor, was the host chef of the event, which some exhibition-goers attended following the tennis Tuesday night. Later on in the night, Wyclef Jean took the stage at Pier 94 to perform.

While we’re still waiting from images from the Fila Fashion Show that was to feature Blake’s Thomas Reynolds line, there wasn’t too much creativity happening on court earlier in the evening, as the Bryan Brothers and Sam Querrey all sported the same adidas garb, and Blake followed suit in a white shirt and black shorts by Thomas Reynolds.

While we weren’t too keen on the gent’s lack of creativity on the court when it came to their apparel, we’re still hoping that we’ll find this Thomas Reynolds zip hoodie under the Christmas tree in a few weeks. Yum! See the Peacoat Hoodie after the jump.

(more…)

blake exo brings in sam, andy MCs

December 2, 2009

Last night at Pier 94 on Manhattan’s Upper West Side a mostly-packed house watched James Blake beat substitute Sam Querrey before the two singles players paired up in a losing effort against Bob and Mike Bryan.

The event was an exhibition headlined by Blake and sponsored by Back Office Associates to raise money for the Thomas Blake, Sr. Cancer Research Fund at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Andy Roddick, who was set to play Blake before having to drop out because of an on-going knee injury, made an appearance on court as “Sam Querrey’s coach”, but was visibly limping and in pain. Roddick took the microphone for much of the first set to entertain the crowd, quipping jokes at Querrey’s errors and generally entertaining the crowd with his dry, savvy humor.

The night also saw Melanie Oudin make an appearance, wearing a silver sequined skirt, black heels and a leather jacket. At one point TSF overheard Melanie say her feet hurt while on the red carpet. Pain is beauty, Mel.

Blake’s childhood friend, John Mayer was in attendance as well, wearing black pants and a black blazer, the pop crooner was looking just fine while sitting among Blake’s family members.

(tsf photo)

wertheim speaks, blake goes live

December 1, 2009

Last night L. Jon Wertheim spoke to tennis fans at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe in SoHo about his book Strokes of Genius while fielding questions from the audience about the legitimacy of Fed’s ’09 French win and why mainstream American sports fans just don’t understand the Rog.

Wertheim spoke on many topics, but one thing he drove home was how personable Federer is, even as a world class athlete. Not sure of it? Check out this clip the CNNSI.com writer said. It’s a laugh, literally.

No really, don’t read on until you watch that clip…

More watching can be done tonight as the James Blake exhibition in New York will be streamed on the USTA’s web site, Livestream.com and the event’s facebook page. Blake is set to play fellow American Andy Roddick in the event that will raise money for the Thomas Blake, Sr. Cancer Research Fund at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Sam Querrey and the Bryan Brothers are also scheduled to appear.

Oh, and the Fed vid is posted after the jump, just in case you can’t stand to peel yourself away from TSF.

(more…)

new york calendar: l. jon, james and melanie

November 28, 2009

For tennis fans in New York, this week is going to be a grand one. The time of year that used to ring in the WTA’s Season Ending Championships has been frighteningly dead since the tour left early in the decade, leaving fans reeling after the excitement of the US Open.

On Monday, tennis journalist L. Jon Wertheim, author of Venus Envy and the more-recent Strokes of Genius, will be a part of a sports writers’ panel at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe in SoHo. The night will also feature author Jesse Katz and New York mag’s Will Leitch. The three writers will each read a selection from their respective books and then take questions from the audience at the event, which starts at 7 PM at the Bookstore Cafe. Check it out for free.

Also on this week, on Tuesday, James Blake will host a tennis exhibition at Pier 94 downtown. The night will feature Andy Roddick and is rumored to also include upstart Melanie Oudin. Tickets can still be found here, along with a full list of events for the evening. 

(photo by Arancia Project via Flickr.)

garden party

March 4, 2009

It wasn’t exactly red carpet glam on Monday night at the Madison Square Garden, but there were plenty of faces (and outfits) that came out for the Billie Jean King Cup.  Take in some more tennis shots and enjoy a few off-court ones, as well.
msg-court09
(more…)

outside winter, inside spring

March 2, 2009

Serena Williams captured the inaugural BNP Paribas Billie Jean King Cup on Monday night at the Madison Square Garden, beating her sister Venus in the final 6-4, 6-3.

While it may have been winter outside in the middle of Manhattan, spring was in full bloom inside the arena. Even President Bill Clinton and Billie Jean joined in the color brigade, sporting patterned purple and soft mint, respectively, on a snowy night.

The color wheel keeps spinning after the cut…


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