Archive for August 26th, 2007

fashion: roger and nike design shirt for charity

August 26, 2007

Roger Federer checked in with his fans through an e-mail newsletter (he’s having a good time in New York, and he got great birthday presents from his fans, thankyouverymuch), and it reminded me of this shirt that’s for sale at It’s a good shirt to wear if you’re cheering on Roger at the U.S. Open this week.

Proceeds from this limited-edition shirt benefit the Roger Federer foundation.


magnus norman: sweden’s best-dressed

August 26, 2007

Swedish style: Former world No. 2 Magnus Norman was voted the best dressed businessman in Sweden by Cafe, the country’s leading fashion magazine. The magazine chose him because he “lights up the somewhat boring fashion in the financial market with tasteful suits mixed with coluorful shirts and cool accessories”. (Do you agree with Cafe? Tell us!)

FYI: Magnus now works for the finacial group Catella as a PR and Marketing manager. Catella is the title sponsor of the Bastad tennis tournament as of 2007.

Makin’ a cameo: According to Charles Bricker, Norman will make an appearance at this year’s U.S. Open for the first time since 2003.

Bracketology: Chris’ picks for the Open

August 26, 2007

TSF is busy with U.S. Open coverage: I’m up to my ears in fashion features; JNP has been on the grounds for the qualies — he’s been taking photos, talking to coaches, getting tennis balls signed by players; Chris has been thinkin’ about his picks for this year’s singles winners; and contributor Michael Shaw pens a post for later today. Look out for it.

Meanwhile, Chris’ 2007 U.S. Open picks (see draws here.):

Quarters: Federer d. Roddick, Baghdatis d. Almagro, Djokovic d. Moya, Nadal d. Chela

Semis: Federer d. Baghdatis, Nadal d. Djokovic

Final: Federer d. Nadal

Federer? Yawn! I’m sure it’s no surprise that I’m yet another person to pick Federer to win it. But don’t worry, I picked Nadal over Djokovic. Nole has been a better player this summer, but I think Nadal has performed better in the Slams and will have a slight fitness advantage in best-of-five matches. And as much as I love Djokovic (him winning means he’ll shed as many layers of clothing as possible), I think his hubris is gonna catch up with him in New York. Of course, Ancic could fire it up in the first round, or possibly Stepanek in the second round, in which case I see Hewitt taking that vacated semifinal spot.

Grand Slam mainstay: I think Moya has a fairly light run to the quarterfinals with the only real trouble I see coming from Youzhny in the third round. Following Youzhny’s success last year (and his comparative lack there of it this summer), I see him going down in three to the Spaniard.

Chela?: I know he hasn’t had a great summer, but I think he could be in the lightest section of the men’s draw with seeds Gonzalez (no wins this summer?) and perennial Slam underachiever Ljubicic. The only threatsI is the winner of the DancevicSafin first round match. I pick Dancevic. But if Safin wins he could make a run to the final.

Another Spaniard: I’d also keep an eye on Ferrer. He’ll have a pretty routine trip to the round of 16 (notice how much I’m discrediting Nalbandian) and if Nadal is having an off day, I think it’s against Ferrer that he would be ripe for the upset.

Rest o’ the top half: Up in the top half, I know a lot has been said about Federer’s name being drawn above five qualifiers but I don’t envy facing possibly Gasquet or Ferrero in the fourth round. If Isner finds his form again (one hot week does not a player make; he coasted on his anonymity and no one knowing how he plays), I think he could take a set off Federer. But that’s only if the giant makes it past Nieminen (who had easy wins over Spadea and Robredo in Cincy).

Resurgent Roddick?: Andy Roddick might be game to take a set off R-Fed in the quarterfinals — maybe even two sets if it’s a night match. If people want to talk about the draw being rigged, I don’t think they would’ve put Federer against Andy so early. And the Texan wouldn’t be facing Mathieu (my pick) or Berdych in the fourth round, and likely Karlovic in the third. Also, let’s remember that Andy’s fallen to a huge server (Gilles Mueller) in the early round of a prior Open.

Open quarter at the Open: Baghdatis and Almagro will benefit from this section. Blake and Davydenko won’t survive. The Russian’s carrying the weight from the betting scandal. The scrutiny’s worse now than earlier in the summer; the USTA’s hired extra security specifically to prevent match-fixing at Flushing Meadows. Plus, he just had a hell of a time getting past Young in New Haven. I think that makes Almagro able to sneak through there. Aren’t Canas and Murray capable of beating Almagro though? Most other times, yes. I don’t see Murray and his bad wrist going past the second round (unless Brad Gilbert has been hiding him all summer to do something dramatic in NYC). And Canas has cooled down significantly since taking out Roger twice in the spring.

I’m picking Baghdatis in the lower section of that quarter because I think Blake will be a little too confident after his New Haven win and may get slowed down by possible memoir-related media appearances (which, for my money, was a boring read). Haas is nevery healthy and Baghdatis always seems to do his best at the Slams. He’ll follow last year’s loss to Agassi with something equally as memorable.

What do you think of Chris’ picks? Tell us!

>> JNP’s u.s. open preview
>> TSF’s u.s. open coverage (including fashion!) continues…

short balls: will & grace, quddus at kids’ day, federer’s birth chart, lacoste…

August 26, 2007

Will and Grace, part 2: A W&G rerun from the other night had yet another obscure reference, this time to Evonne Goolagong. Yes, yes — it’s not obscure to us gays, but you have to admit it’s obscure to the general public…

I’m no spring chicken: Which means I don’t watch TRL, which means I didn’t even know about Quddus Philippe until today. Cutie! Quddus is hosting Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day at the Open.

We have a lot of work to do: Did anyone else see Venus on GMA yesterday? Kate Snow, one of the show’s anchors, committed a tennis faux pas (and one of my pet peeves): she asked Venus to “volley” when she meant “rally” — grrrrr…. And, when talking about Venus’ ranking, Snow said it’s “really up there”. Uhm, an intern could have done some research to make this less vague.

A Lacoste mishit: Hardcore Lacoste (and kitsch) fans must check out this eBay auction. The belt is cute, but that’s about it.

Reading Roger: The World No. 1’s birth chart.

Federer taps another teen: For the ATP Masters Series tourney in Cincy, junior Matt Allare was chosen by Roger to be his hitting partner. Jesse Levine got the same honor a few months back when Federer flew him to Dubai. (ZooTennis)

Nole’s resume: The Age does this cute, quick feature on the clowny ways of Novak Djokovic.

crazy u.s. open: spirlea bumps venus

August 26, 2007

Maybe it’s the lights, maybe it’s the matches that last until 2 a.m., or maybe it’s the fact that it’s New York — for whatever reason, the U.S. Open seems to bring out some crazy. As part of our coverage over the next two weeks, TSF will be posting clips of madness and memories from tournaments past. We’re talkin’ about the nitty gritty stuff. Stuff you can’t make up.

The breakthrough of Venus Williams at the 1997 U.S. Open saw her, unseeded, make it all the way through the final after defeating Anke Huber (eighth seed), Irina Spirlea (11th seed). In the final, Martina Hingis beat Venus 6-0, 6-4.

Bump: One of that tourney’s biggest moments came in the semi between Venus and Spirlea, which Venus won 7-6 (7-5), 4-6, 7-6 (9-7). During a second-set changeover, Spirlea looked like she deliberately changed her path to bump into Venus as they walked to their chairs (see video). Once Spirlea sat down, cameras caught her looking towards her players’ box with a smile. Was she laughing off a goofy and embarassing incident, or was she giggling like a bully proud of her work?

After the match. Spirlea admitted she wanted Venus to acknowledge her existence (and bumping into her was the only way to do that, I guess) and stop being so aloof. She thought the Williams sisters were smug and used an expletive — which she was fined for — to describe Venus.

Of course ringleader Richard Williams retorted by calling Spirlea a tall, white turkey. LOVE IT.

What’s Venus’ take of all this?

“I was locked in an epic battle, and I had no idea what I was doing, and she was playing unbelievable,” Venus said recently. “It just happened. She got blamed because of the way she acted later, and then she laughed after, but I didn’t have time for laughs and games because I wanted to reach the final. I went over and started to read my notes. People blamed her for the bump, but I guess I didn’t move. Everybody got a kick out of it I guess. Wow. That’s my life.” (source)

Bonus round: The Romanian Spirlea — whose strong forehand, stinging slice, and effective drop shots reminded us all of Steffi Graf — didn’t really recover from that incident. She won Paris in 1999. Now married with a child. (source)

(Do you remember a moment or match at the U.S. Open that we should mention? Tell us!.)

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