Or perhaps a better title for this post would have been, “Home is where the belief is.” However you pin it, Melanie Oudin is about to drop out of the top 100. The Georgia gal who took the tennis world by storm at the 2009 US Open has struggled in the 22 months since she won four matches and captured all of our imaginations along the way. After a semi-decent 2010 in which she went 25-24, Oudin has epically struggled this year, winning just eight matches in 30 tries. Between the French Open and Wimbledon, she won just three games in two matches (to be fair, she went out to Schiavone and Ivanovic, respectively).
But if Oudin loves anything it’s the hardcourt season in America. On Wednesday afternoon she talked with reporters about the inaguaral Citi Open, which is being billed as a Washington D.C. event but taking place in College Park, Md., near the University of Maryland campus. The event happens July 23 to 31, a week before the men take the court at the Legg Mason Classic. If anything, we’re digging the tourney’s entry page (see below). | TSF Vault: Melanie Oudin
TSF got to listen to Melanie talk the reporters (and herself) up for a few minutes and she weighed in on a couple of things we had been curious about.
TSF: Melanie, tell us about your plan for the summer. What is your schedule going to be other than the Citi Open?
Melanie Oudin: Nothing is really finalized right now. I’m not really worried about playing qualifying right now. It might be good for me to play someone who isn’t in the top 50 in the first round. Qualifying can help me get some matches under my belt and be ready for a main draw match. It wouldn’t be the worst thing for me, I think.
I took a wild card to play in [USTA Pro Circuit event] Lexington. First of all, I love that tournament. It was the first pro tournament that I ever won. The people there are so nice and I felt like going back there where I first started and won my first tournament would help a lot and hopefully it’ll be a really good week.
TSF: Recently Donald Young got into a bit of trouble on Twitter for hurling some choice words at the USTA. You’ve dabbled on Twitter in the past, but do you think you might do more of it in the future?
MO: I’m on some but not a lot. I would never put something really personal up there because I don’t feel like that’s what you put on Facebook or Twitter. I know Donald did apologize so I think everything is good with them now. I just don’t think it’s the place to be too personal and put any huge information on there but I think it’s good for fans to be able to follow different athletes and people they’re inspired by.
But the real question is: what word is going to be on her shoes this year?! Get on that, Wilson!
(Getty Images photo)