2014/07/31

Tennis Channel Offers Nearly 150 Hours of US Open Series Live and Same Day Coverage

TennisChannelLogo 300 by 500

LOS ANGELES, July 17, 2014 – Tennis Channel, the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to both the professional sport and tennis lifestyle, will offer close to 150 live or first-run match hours during this summer’s Emirates Airline US Open Series, with coverage underway Thursday, July 21. The network will show encore replays throughout the five-week North American hard-court season, and devote more than 300 overall hours to this year’s competition. The eight-tournament series of men’s (ATP) and women’s (WTA) events is the annual lead up to the US Open in New York in late August.

 

Tournament coverage on Tennis Channel in 2014 will include semifinals, quarterfinals, round of 16 and early rounds. This year’s Emirates Airline US Open Series consists of: BB&T Atlanta Open (Atlanta – ATP); Citi Open (Washington, D.C. – ATP); Bank of the West Classic (Stanford, Calif. – WTA); Rogers Cup (Toronto – ATP and Montreal – WTA); Western and Southern Open (Cincinnati, Ohio – WTA/ATP); Winston-Salem Open (Winston-Salem, N.C. – ATP); Connecticut Open (New Haven, Conn. – WTA).

 

This summer marks the 11th consecutive year that Tennis Channel will have comprehensive coverage of the US Open Series – every summer since the circuit was founded by the United States Tennis Association (USTA) in 2004. The network has been producing all series coverage for itself and fellow broadcasters ESPN and CBS Sports since 2008, minus the events in Cincinnati and Canada.

 

On-Air Talent

Hall of Famers, former players and widely respected sportscasters make up Tennis Channel’s stable of on-air talent throughout the year, and many will be in the booth or on the sidelines again during the 2014 Emirates Airline US Open Series. Newly enshrined Hall of Famer Lindsay Davenport (@LDavenport76) is part of the network’s summer-analysts team, as are former players Justin Gimelstob (@justingimelstob), Rennae Stubbs (@rennaestubbs) and Mark Knowles (@knowlzee10s). Ted Robinson (@tedjrobinson), Ian Eagle and Brett Haber (@BrettHaber) are among the award-winning announcers calling the Emirates Airline US Open Series for Tennis Channel, along with Brian Webber (@bwwebber) and former player Leif Shiras (@LShirock). Coach Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone), whose expertise has guided all-time greats Pete Sampras and Roger Federer, is new to the network’s series booth this year.

 

The 2014 Emirates Airline US Open Series Tennis Channel first-run telecast schedule (all times ET) and on-air talent follows: (*indicates same-day delayed broadcast). Live coverage during the week of July 28 will bounce between the ATP and WTA events.  For encore replays, visit www.tennischannel.com/schedule.

 

July 24-26      BB&T Atlanta Open (ATP)

Thursday, July 24 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (round of 16)

Friday, July 25 – 9:15 p.m.-11 p.m. (quarterfinal)

Saturday, July 26 – 8 p.m.-10 p.m. (semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Robinson, Analyst – Gimelstob, Sideline Reporter – Knowles

 

July 28-Aug 2      Citi Open (ATP)

Monday, July 28 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (early round)

Tuesday, July 29 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (early round)

Wednesday, July 30 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (early round)

Thursday, July 31 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (round of 16)

Friday, Aug 1 – 1 p.m.-3 p.m.; 9 p.m.-11 p.m. (quarterfinals)

Saturday, Aug 2 – 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analyst – Gimelstob, Sideline Reporter – Annacone

 

July 29-Aug 2      Bank of the West Classic (WTA)

Tuesday, July 29 – 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; 10 p.m.-midnight (early round)

Wednesday, July 30 – 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; 10 p.m.-midnight (early round)

Thursday, July 31 – 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; 10 p.m.-midnight (round of 16)

Saturday, Aug 2- 1 a.m.-3 a.m. (quarterfinal)*; 10 p.m.-midnight (semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Robinson, Analyst – Davenport, Sideline Reporter – Stubbs

 

Aug 4-7           Rogers Cup (ATP/WTA)

Monday, Aug. 4 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (early round)

Tuesday, Aug. 5 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (early round)

Wednesday, Aug. 6 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (early round)

Thursday, Aug. 7 – 6 p.m.-10 p.m. (round of 16)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analysts – Davenport, Sideline Reporter – Webber

 

Aug 11-13       Western & Southern Open (ATP/WTA)

Monday, Aug. 11 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (early round)

Tuesday, Aug. 12 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (early round)

Wednesday, Aug. 13 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (early round)

Talent:   Play-by-Play – Eagle and Haber,

Analysts – Davenport, Gimelstob, Stubbs, Annacone, Knowles

 

Aug 20-22       Winston-Salem Open (ATP)

Wednesday, Aug. 20 – 3 p.m.-7 p.m.; 9 p.m.-11p.m.* (round of 16)

Thursday, Aug. 21 – 9 p.m.-11 p.m.* (quarterfinal)

Friday, Aug. 22 – 9 p.m.-11 p.m.* (semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Shiras, Analyst – Knowles

 

Aug 20-21       Connecticut Open (WTA)

Wednesday, Aug. 20 – 1 p.m.-5 p.m.; 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (round of 16)

Thursday, Aug 21 – 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (quarterfinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analyst – Stubbs

 

Tennis Channel will launch its 2014 Emirates Airline US Open Series coverage with a 30-minute lead-in show live from the BB&T Atlanta Open prior to its first day of series coverage. The network will produce similar on-site lead-in programs prior to the first day of coverage at the Citi Open and every day of the Western & Southern Open.

Share

Li Na Wins US Open Sportsmanship Award

LiNaMontreal

FLUSHING, N.Y., September 5, 2013 — The USTA announced that Li Na has received the second annual “US Open Sportsmanship Award,” presented to the male and female professional tennis players who best demonstrate excellence in sportsmanship throughout the Emirates Airline US Open Series and the US Open. The award was presented to Li today at the US Open by USTA Sportsmanship Selection Committee Chairman Todd Martin.

“As one of the most successful and respected players on tour, Li embodies what a champion truly is,” said USTA Chairman, CEO and President Dave Haggerty. “We couldn’t be happier to honor her with the US Open Sportsmanship Award.”

The USTA started a Sportsmanship Committee in 2011. Its charge is to “educate and inspire youngsters and their parents to develop and exhibit a high degree of sportsmanship and an attitude of fair play and mutual respect on and off the tennis court. Underlying the charge is the ethical imperative that fairness is more important than winning.”

Eligibility requirements for winners include participating in at least two Series tournaments, as well as the 2013 US Open. Each US Open Sportsmanship Award winner receives a trophy and a $5,000 donation to the charity of his or her choice. The men’s winner this year was David Ferrer. The 2012 winners were Bob and Mike Bryan and Samantha Stosur.

Share

Tennis Channel Announces US Open Series Broadcast Schedule

tennis_channel_logo

LOS ANGELES, July 24, 2013 – Tennis Channel will cover all nine tournaments in this summer’s Emirates Airline US Open Series, starting this Thursday, July 25, and running through Saturday, Aug. 24. The network will show close to 120 live or first-run match hours from the men’s and women’s competitions that make up the five-week hard-court season leading up to the US Open in late August. Including encore matches, Tennis Channel will devote more than 300 hours to the Emirates Airline US Open Series this year, which features four men’s ATP and four women’s WTA tournaments, and one combined event.

The 2013 Emirates Airline US Open Series Tennis Channel telecast schedule (all times ET) and on-air talent follows: (*indicates same-day delayed broadcast). For encore replays, visit www.tennischannel.com/schedule.

 

July 25-27            Bank of the West Classic (WTA)

Thursday, July 25 – 5 p.m.-9 p.m.; 10 p.m.-midnight (singles round of 16)

Saturday, July 27 – 1 a.m.-3 a.m.*; 6 p.m.-8 p.m. (singles quarterfinal, semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Robinson, Analyst – Davenport, Sideline Reporter – Morariu

 

July 26-27            BB&T Atlanta Open (ATP)

Friday, July 26 – 9 p.m.-11 p.m. (singles quarterfinal)

Saturday, July 27 – 8 p.m.-10 p.m. (singles semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analyst – Gimelstob, Sideline Reporter – Knowles

 

August 1-3            Southern California Open (WTA)

Thursday, Aug. 1 – 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; 10 p.m.-midnight (singles round of 16)

Saturday, Aug. 3 – 1 a.m.-3 a.m.*; 10 p.m.-midnight (singles quarterfinal, semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Robinson, Analyst – Davenport

 

August 1-3            Citi Open (ATP)

Thursday, Aug. 1 – 4 p.m.-10 p.m. (singles round of 16)

Friday, Aug. 2 – 1 p.m.-3 p.m.; 9 p.m.-11 p.m. (singles quarterfinals)

Saturday, Aug. 3 – 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (singles semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analysts – Gimelstob and Dell

 

August 5-8            Rogers Cup (ATP/WTA)

Monday, Aug. 5 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Tuesday, Aug. 6 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Wednesday, Aug. 7 – 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Thursday, Aug. 8 – 6 p.m.-10 p.m. (singles round of 16)

Talent:   ATP: Host – Weber, Play-by-Play and Analyst – TPL World Feed Commentators WTA: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analyst – Davenport

 

August 12-14       Western & Southern Open (ATP/WTA)

Monday, Aug. 12 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Tuesday, Aug. 13 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Wednesday, Aug. 14 – 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. (singles early rounds)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Eagle and Haber, Analysts – Davenport, Gimelstob, Stubbs, Knowles

 

Aug. 21-22            New Haven Open at Yale (WTA)

Wednesday, Aug. 21 – 1 p.m.-5 p.m.; 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (singles round of 16)

Thursday, Aug. 22 – 7 p.m.-9 p.m. (singles quarterfinals)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Haber, Analyst – Stubbs

 

August 22-23       Winston-Salem Open (ATP)

Thursday, Aug. 22 – 5 p.m.-7 p.m. (singles quarterfinal)

*Friday, Aug. 23 – 9 p.m.-11 p.m. (singles semifinal)

Talent: Play-by-Play – Shiras, Analyst – Knowles

Share

Ivanovic, Jankovic and Pennetta Enter Southern California Open Field

AnaIvanovic

Carlsbad, CA (June  13, 2013) – The Southern California Open, a stop on the Emirates Airline US Open Series calendar, has announced that Ana Ivanovic and Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, along with Italy’s Flavia Pennetta will be competing in this summer’s WTA Premier 700 tennis event. Currently in its 28th year, the Southern California Open will once again be hosted at the beautiful La Costa Resort and Spa on July 27-Aug. 4.

Ivanovic, Jankovic and Pennetta will be joining 2013 Australian Open Champion, Victoria Azarenka, and 2012 Wimbledon Finalist, Agnieszka Radwanska, who entered the Southern California Open last month, in what is expected to be a strong tournament field.

“We are delighted that these three WTA stars will be playing in the Southern California Open,” said Tournament Director Alastair Garland. “Our tennis fans will certainly be looking forward to seeing Ana, Jelena and Flavia in action during the tournament.”

Share

Emirates Airline US Open Series to Launch Ticket Sale Campaign on March 5th

EmiratesUSOpenseries

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., February 25, 2013 The USTA announced that tickets for all nine of the 2013 Emirates Airline US Open Series events will be on sale Tuesday, March 5 at 10 a.m. ET through www.emiratesusopenseries.com. This is the first time that Emirates Airline US Open Series events are coordinating their ticket sales. The USTA will support the initiative with a national marketing campaign, as well as a satellite media tour with American teenager Sloane Stephens, who is currently ranked No. 17 in the WTA Rankings.

 

The 2013 Emirates Airline US Open Series schedule is:

STANFORD, CA
BANK OF THE WEST CLASSIC JULY 22-28
ATLANTA, GA
BB&T ATLANTA OPEN JULY 22-28
CARLSBAD, CA
MERCURY INSURANCE OPEN JULY 29-AUG 4
WASHINGTON, DC
CITI OPEN JULY 29-AUG 4
TORONTO, CAN
ROGERS CUP AUGUST 5-11
MONTREAL, CAN
ROGERS CUP AUGUST 5-11
CINCINNATI, OH
WESTERN & SOUTHERN OPEN AUGUST 11-18
NEW HAVEN, CT
NEW HAVEN OPEN AT YALE AUGUST 18-24
WINSTON-SALEM, NC
WINSTON-SALEM OPEN AUGUST 18-24

 

“Coordinating this national ticket on sale campaign for the Emirates Airline US Open Series events is yet another way to unite the tournaments under the Series brand while also allowing tennis fans around the country access to tickets to all of the major summer hard court events leading up to the US Open,” said J. Wayne Richmond, General Manager of the Emirates Airline US Open Series. “We are excited to leverage the platform of Tennis Night in America to promote the Series. The tournaments have all embraced this initiative.”

 

The national ticket on sale will be held the day after “Tennis Night in America” on March 4 — featuring the BNP Paribas Showdown from New York’s Madison Square Garden and scheduled to include Serena Williams playing Victoria Azarenka in a rematch of the 2012 US Open Final, followed by Rafael Nadal against Juan Martin del Potro. The initiative will also coincide with thousands of Tennis Festivals across the country during the entire month of March, which are designed to welcome whole families to play tennis at all skill levels and to experience first-hand the way in which tennis is now sized right for children.

 

Now in its 10th season, the Emirates Airline US Open Series continues to serve as a true regular season of hard-court tennis, linking nine summer tournaments to the US Open. Novak Djokovic and Petra Kvitova won the 2012 Emirates Airline US Open Series men’s and women’s titles. In 2007, Roger Federer collected the biggest paycheck in tennis history – $2.4 million – for winning the US Open and the Emirates Airline US Open Series titles. In 2005, Kim Clijsters also captured both the US Open and the Series, winning $2.2 million – the largest purse in women’s sports history – and equaled that amount in 2010, winning the US Open and finishing the Emirates Airline US Open Series in second place.

Share

Emirates Named Official Airline of the ATP World Tour and Rankings Sponsor

emirates

(December 27, 2012) The ATP and Emirates announced a new global partnership in which Emirates will become the Official Airline of the ATP World Tour. In addition Emirates will become the new title sponsor of the ATP Rankings, as of  January 1,  2013.

As part of the five-year agreement, Emirates becomes an Official Platinum Partner of the ATP World Tour, as well as the season-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, through 2017.


“We’re delighted to welcome Emirates as the Official Airline of the ATP World Tour. It’s fantastic news for men’s professional tennis that a brand of Emirates’ global stature has pledged their support to the ATP World Tour for the next five years,” said Brad Drewett, ATP Executive Chairman and President. “This long-term commitment from Emirates is a testament to the world-class entertainment that is enjoyed by millions of fans across the world on the ATP World Tour.”

“This tie up with the ATP World Tour and Rankings is a perfect addition to our existing portfolio of global sports sponsorships. It will allow us to share in the sporting passions of our customers and bring them closer to the players,” said Sir Maurice Flanagan, Executive Vice Chairman of Emirates Airline and Group. “We see it as a natural extension of our current presence at high profile tennis events including sponsorship of several ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events, the Emirates Airline US Open Series and being an official partner of the US Open. Through our global network and carefully selected sports sponsorships, Emirates successfully unites and engages fans and we look forward to working with the ATP to maximize on the consumer experiential and digital media opportunities this sponsorship presents to us.”

Emirates will also become the presenting sponsor of the ATP World Tour No. 1 trophy ceremonies and the ATP Newcomer of the Year award, presented annually at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.


Emirates will be integrated into programming on ATPWorldTour.com and ATP World Tour Uncovered presented by Rio, the Tour’s weekly magazine-style television show broadcast in more than 150 countries worldwide.


Emirates is the world’s biggest airline by international traffic.

Share

“On the Call” with Roger Federer for the Emirates Airline US Open Series

Roger Federer held a conference call with the media on Monday afternoon to discuss his participation in the 2012 Emirates Airline US Open Series, which this week in Mason, Ohio for the Western and Southern Open.

Q. Novak Djokovic won the Australian Open and Rafa Nadal the French Open, you Wimbledon, Andy Murray the gold medal. Would you consider this year’s US Open to be sort of a tiebreaker to the tournament of who has had the best year?
ROGER FEDERER: Obviously it gives you a direction, yes. But you have the ATP World Tour Finals at the end of the year and there’s still a lot of tournaments to play for like Shanghai and Paris, so forth. It’s not just only I think the US Open, otherwise the winner wouldn’t play the remainder of the year. I think that’s not going to happen. It is interesting, obviously, that three different guys have won three different majors this year, plus Andy the gold. It definitely sets a great tone for the US Open, there’s no doubt about that.

Q. I’m wondering if you have had the time or taken the time to analyze what happened at the gold medal match. It was so lopsided, so out of the character, not what we’re used to seeing.
ROGER FEDERER: Honestly it took me five minutes to analyze really. I didn’t need to kind of sit down and go in a dark room and cry over it and kind of understand what happened. I think I understood rather quickly what happened. I thought Andy played a good match. The beginning of the match was very close. I had some chances there. Had some chances in the second set. I think I missed nine breakpoints, I didn’t make one. That obviously doesn’t work in a big match like this against a great player like Andy. Once he was in the lead, obviously he did really well to keep the lead. Yeah, I think that was it for me. Maybe I was emotionally drained a touch. Maybe I was a bit tired from the Del Potro match. I thought Andy did really well to put the pressure on me. It was out of character for me to lose nine games a row in the finals. That’s obviously something that can happen, but I guess I got myself to blame, and Andy’s great level of play. For me, I moved on really quickly. I was happy for him and disappointed for me. I was still very happy to get the silver and the medal for Switzerland.

Q. Could you look back to Wimbledon a little bit? Everybody always tries to retire players when they hit 30. It seems like the game is skewing a little older now.
ROGER FEDERER: I think you’re right. I mean, I think over 30 players in the main draw of the French Open. Seeing, for instance, how well Tommy Haas is playing, how many of my generation are still playing and playing well, it’s nice to see really. I remember when I was coming up on tour how many great rivalries we had in the younger generation. When I came up, we came up, basically there was still Agassi, Sampras, Moya, Henman, you name it, all the older guys that made the tour work. I think we had so many great young players coming up, it’s nice to see so many guys are playing well, holding on and winning titles really. I think it’s really good times in tennis. Like you say, you have the older generation, you have the generation of Rafa that’s extremely strong as well, and now the new generation is coming through as well with Bernard Tomic, Milos Raonic, David Goffin, Kei Nishikori, all those guys. It’s good times in tennis right now. But I do hope we get even some more better younger juniors coming through in the next couple years.

Q. With a longer-than-normal grass court season in 2012, such a short turnaround to prepare for New York, do you think it’s tougher to make the switch from grass courts to hard courts this season? What are the precautionary measures you might implement to ensure you can stay healthy now?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, there’s no doubt about it, this is not an ideal preparation. I mean, it’s amazing, for instance, what Novak was able to do. It’s not impossible, but it’s just very hard on the body and mind to travel halfway around the world, go on a different surface, win, then back it up week and week again. Obviously, the US Open is only coming up. That hasn’t even started yet. It’s been tough. In the past you would take maybe a few weeks off for a top player, then prepare for three brutal weeks on hard courts, then come over here wanting to fire out of all cylinders. This year it’s different. Obviously we stayed on grass. Now all I have is four days on hard courts before I play my first round here probably against a top 30 player or top 40 player. It makes it obviously very difficult and a big focus for me to get through my first-round match over here. Obviously physically I feel fine. The body did hurt maybe the first couple of days just because the movement is a bit different. But I think everybody has a bit of issues like that in the beginning. So it’s just important to be professional, sleep enough, eat healthy, do all your treatment the right way, all that stuff, so you will manage the next like over six months on hard courts now. That’s the most brutal surface out there. It’s a big stretch coming up for all of us really.

Q. You just said that physically you feel fine. How do you feel mentally and emotionally going into this year’s US Open as opposed to last year? Can you look back a little bit on last year’s Open.
ROGER FEDERER: I’m very excited, very happy. Back to world No. 1. I’ve had a magical summer for me. Really ever since the French Open, it’s been a good year all around anyways, but winning Wimbledon, getting back to world No. 1, there’s been so many things happening for me, it’s been a wonderful last few weeks. I feel like I’m feeling better than last year because I was a bit shaken up against the loss by Jo-Wilfred Tsonga, and even through Montréal, it was a tough situation. Cincy I didn’t play all that great, lost to Tomas Berdych. I came into the US Open not quite sure of how I was playing. I was actually playing really, really well. I had that brutal match with Novak, up two sets to love. I feel like this year mentally I’m more at peace. Then again, that doesn’t give you any – how do you say – idea yet of how you’re going to do at the US Open and Cincinnati. We all have to wait and see how that goes.

Q. You mentioned about reclaiming the world No. 1 spot in the ATP world rankings. You surpassed Pete Sampras’ record by doing that this summer. At your age, at this time in your career, how important is it to you to keep surpassing records like those of Pete’s?
ROGER FEDERER: I don’t know how important it really is for me. I just think it’s a motivation, a big one, for me to be able to have the opportunity to reach such great records, you know, equal, tie and break records like these. It obviously kind of gets you going. It motivates me to play against younger generations. It motivates me playing in front of full stadiums. All these things add to the great puzzle and life I’m living as a player. It makes easier, all the sacrifices, all the traveling, playing we do on a daily basis. But it’s not most important. But obviously it’s a nice thing to have and one I hope I will be very proud of once I retire.

Q. The US Open has record prize money again this year, $25.5 million. You’re somebody that travels all around the world. Can you tell us if you’ve seen how the economy has affected different places? I imagine pro tennis players are insulated because the tournaments take very good care of you as you travel. But can you talk about if you’ve seen any change in how places have been affected by the economy over the last few years.
ROGER FEDERER: By ‘places’ you mean tournaments, right?

Q. Yes.
ROGER FEDERER: I think we’ve gone through the crisis – who knows, maybe there’s another crisis on the horizon here – actually pretty good, considering how bad the economy was from 2008 till now. We’re obviously trying to sign on some sponsors during that time for the tour because we lost Mercedes and others. I think we’ve actually gotten through this financial crisis, economic crisis, really well. I think also, obviously because it’s a one-week or two-week event, you have an entire year to look for ways trying to make your tournament sustainable. Obviously you hope that they had long-term contracts. Obviously some did get unlucky, that the contracts ran out right at the time that you didn’t want it to run out. Obviously then it was a dangerous and difficult situation really for those. They asked the ATP for relief, the council and board. That’s what we discussed and tried to make it a good decision for the tournament but also for the players, because you want to keep the jobs alive for all those players, that they can travel the world and still make money and have all those possibilities to play tournaments. Overall we’ve gotten through this pretty good. Yeah, we hope it’s a successful tour, and I feel it is.

Q. Could you address the fact that a couple weeks ago they announced that Wimbledon in 2015 will move into the summer an extra week, so there would be three weeks of grass court play prior to it.
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I think it’s a great thing. I think it was very well-received from the players. From what I heard, everybody was in favor of it. Think back at how the tour used to be. We used to have three Grand Slams on grass, and now we only have one. We barely have one month of tennis on grass. Obviously it’s nice to keep that surface alive a bit more. It gives just a bit of a bigger rest between the French Open and Wimbledon, so that completely makes sense. Obviously, you have to understand every change brings problems from time to time. But I’m happy that Wimbledon and the US Open were able to sort out that kind of a situation because it wasn’t an easy one for the US Open, but a very good one for the players. I think Wimbledon is excited about it, too. I think it has many more upsides than downsides to it.

Q. For those of us who weren’t at Wimbledon for the Olympics, how different was it? Was there anything you missed that you would normally have at Wimbledon? Anything you liked about the Olympics?
ROGER FEDERER: Yes, many things I missed from the Wimbledon tournament. I guess you also felt that it was just a completely different event. Those things we thought we were very nice, then other things we had to get used to. I think it was nice we had to adjust, that it was a completely different feel from Wimbledon to the Olympics. I think overall it was a well-run tournament. At times it almost felt like the site was too big for the Olympics. I can only speak from experience from Sydney, Athens and Beijing. They all created the stadiums for the Olympics. They were not as big, obviously, as Wimbledon. Hardly any is, except for the US Open. I thought it was great to have such a big site, but at times it was too spread out, I thought it was. Then again, it didn’t change the fact that we had great atmospheres in the stadiums, that it was a very unique place to play tennis at where there is so much history.

Q. When your girls were born, you spoke about wanting to be around the game long enough for them to be aware of who you were as a tennis player and what you had accomplished. What do you think their sense is now, because they are a little bit older, and what do you and Mirka tell them?
ROGER FEDERER: It was really Mirka’s wish more than mine. I’m just happy I’m still playing and things are still going so well for me, that I’m actually able to feed them almost on a daily basis. That’s what I was worried most with Mirka. Maybe with having twins, it was going to get extremely difficult to travel the world with them, see them enough, that it was not going to actually pull me away from the game. That was my biggest worry. It was really Mirka’s dream to have them still see me play from time to time. We’ve already had that now. So I don’t know exactly what they think of me. As their dad, they know I’m a tennis player, that I do play a lot of tennis, but I don’t think they understand that it’s actually a job. They don’t understand, I think, the difference between a match and practice. It doesn’t matter. They sit in stadiums. They’ve created obviously some of the most unique moments in my life, having seen them, you know, at let’s say trophy ceremony in Basel, trophy ceremony particularly at Wimbledon this year. Those are memories no one can ever take away from me and Mirka. That was a very intimate moment for me and Mirka even though it was in the eye of the storm with everybody watching. It was a great, great feeling for me. I hope they also look back and were happy we did those things. We really try to protect them as much as we can. Life on tour is good with them. I’m happy the way things are going.

Q. Do you want them to play the game?
ROGER FEDERER: Not necessarily, no. If they really, really want to, I’ll support them. If they don’t, I’m very happy they do something different, as well.

Q. There’s been a lot of talk over your records. There’s two that don’t get a lot of attention. You’ve never retired from a match once you started plus you’ve played every Grand Slam since 2000. What pride do you take from those?
ROGER FEDERER: I wonder how many close calls I’ve actually had to retire during a match. Maybe a handful where I was just thinking, man, I’m in too much pain, I maybe actually shouldn’t be playing. But I can just play, or I have so much pain, but I know I won’t injure myself more. It was more kind of like some of those moments. Obviously playing the consecutive Grand Slams, you don’t really think about it. I’ve never actually entered a Grand Slam just to enter to keep that streak going. I guess I was always lucky enough and prepared enough to feel like I could do something and play well or even at times obviously win very often at Grand Slams. So that’s not one thing I thought about. But every match I play, not retiring after a match for me, that’s something that’s almost normal. If you do enter, you’re supposed to be playing. I’m happy also I’ve played schedules from always January till November basically. I’ve never taken a full season off after the Open. I’ve never taken more than, what, eight weeks off from the tour. I’m obviously proud of this. Then again, it doesn’t mean that much. I know other players have many more problems trying to do that all the time and some just can’t because it’s not possible with their body or they’ve gotten unlucky much more than I have over the years. I think I’ve taken great care of myself and mentally I’m very strong to be able to handle all of that, I do believe.

Transcript courtesy of ASAPSports

Tennis Panorama News participates in many tennis media conference calls. “On The Call” serves to give readers an inside view of tennis news.

Share

Roddick Wins Second Title of Season at BB&T Atlanta Open

By Audraine Jackson

Atlanta, GA USA – Under a brutally hot July sun in the deep south 29-year-old Andy Roddick raised the BB&T Atlanta Open championship trophy into the air before a capacity crowd after defeating Luxembourg’s Gilles Muller 1-6, 7-6 (2), 6-2. It was a gesture he has repeated many times in his professional tennis life with 31 ATP World Tour titles already under his belt, but at this stage in his career, titles taste sweeter and number 32 felt like a steady cool breeze on a summer day.

 

“Being a tennis player, a lot of people, they see it on TV. They think about it in terms of one match but it’s almost like a lifestyle. You’ve got to eat right, sleep right. It’s a constant kind of battle when you are out there by yourself a lot,” said Roddick. “To kind of now be approaching numbers that basically tell the story of consistency over time… it’s something I’m proud of. I work pretty hard. I don’t know that I have been able to pull off the shots that Roger or Rafa or someone like that can pull off. But I feel like I’ve done pretty well with what I was given. I sleep well knowing I haven’t really cheated myself.”

 

This title came no easier than many others in a match that lasted two hours and 13 minutes in 91 degree humid conditions under a blazing sun. Roddick had to get past a competitive match with No. 1 seed John Isner that went late into the night to make it to the final. Muller, a left handed player whose highest world ranking reached 42 has experienced an incredible run among marquee players with career victories over Andre Agassi, Rafael Nadal and Roddick in 2005. Despite jumping out fast with a 6-1 victory in the first set forcing two service breaks he lost a close battle in the 2nd when Roddick was able to edge him out in second serve points won and second return points.

 

“I played very well in the first two sets. At the end of the second set, I got very tight,” Muller said.  “I felt like I was in a position to win that match. I was too nervous to close it and then Andy started to play better. He started to return my serves and put a lot of balls in the court. And I started to miss a lot. Maybe I lost the belief in myself to win that match too quickly.”

 

By the third set Roddick became more aggressive, forcing errors and placing balls at speeds and angles difficult to get to. Service points won reached 84 percent while Muller managed only 50. “I know by now the score of a set is irrelevant,” Roddick said. “Whether it’s 7-6 or 6-1, it still counts the same. With most other sports, you get way up in the first quarter and it actually means something in regards to the rest of the game. In tennis, it’s not really the case too often, with the exception of momentum. You just try to start over and put some holds together. I was able to out the second set and I think he might have gotten a little tired in the third.”

 

Roddick won his second title of the season and his second ATP World Tour victory in Atlanta, the last coming in 2001 on clay. He has an early points lead in the 2012 Emirates Airline US Open Series Bonus Challenge Standings earning 70 in the tournament. He will head to London to join fellow USA teammates in singles and is paired with rival John Isner for doubles, a sight he admits few opponents want to see coming.

 

The BB&T Atlanta Open doubles title went to Matthew Ebden (AUS) and Ryan Harrison (USA) who defeated Xavier Malisse (BEL) and Michael Russell (USA) 6-3, 3-6, 10-6. Both teams knocked off talented top seeded duos to reach the finals. Ebden said it took confidence to pull off the win. “We had a few chances in the second set and felt like we weren’t playing our best tennis. We were pretty confident if we lifted our level a little, we’d come through. We’re very good friends. I think it helps on the court. It’s great to find someone you really enjoy playing with. You get a lot out of it. Not just the wins, but you get improvements in your game.”

 

Harrison, who is also headed to London to join Team USA Tennis, said aggressive play made the difference. “The way we play, we always try to push forward and play aggressive. That’s the way both of us are comfortable playing. It comes down to execution for us. It doesn’t matter if its singles, doubles, triples or whatever it is. If you win titles, you can always build off of it, so we’re really fired up.”

 

#

Audraine Jackson covered the BB&T Atlanta Open for Tennis Panorama News July 14-22, 2012. She is a sports blogger, digital journalist and tennis addict. Follow her personal twitter account @atlstoryteller.

Share

Roddick Halts Isner’s Third Run for a Title at BB&T Atlanta Open

By Audraine Jackson

Atlanta, GA USA – In 2001 Shirley Franklin was elected Atlanta’s first female African-American mayor.  The Braves defeated the Houston Astros in the National League Division Series and an 18-year-old aspiring tennis champion named Andy Roddick  won his first ATP World Tour title in the city when the tournament was played on clay. Eleven years later with a former No. 1 ranking under his belt, a wiser, more experienced 29-year-old Roddick defeated top seeded John Isner  6-4, 6-7(5), 6-4 to move a step closer to earning the title a second time at the BB&T Atlanta Open. “I think it’s good. It was a long time ago, a different surface, a different time of year,” Roddick said. “There are not a lot of parallels but I can say certainly it’s nice to be back in the finals here.”

Both players had loud and vocal fans present as they took the court in a packed, sold out arena under threatening skies that caused a 30 minute rain delay. Isner managed 26 aces to Roddick’s six but the difference was his opponent’s ability to convert points off serves. “I took care of my serve. I did what I was supposed to do. You’re not going to beat John if you get broken a lot.  I was able to play off a little bit of trouble there at the net in the first set. I just competed well. I stayed in it even when I wasn’t real happy about whatever was going on. I kept it together and competed well.”

Isner has made the finals for the past two years losing to Mardy Fish while missing the finals this year in a loss to Roddick. “It didn’t go my way. He was the better player tonight. That’s why he won,” Isner said. “It’s pretty disappointing. Three years in this tournament I lost to two Americans, good friends of mine and it’s tough. I’ve always wanted to win this tournament but it wasn’t to be. It’s really no shame to losing to either one of those guys.”

Roddick will compete for the singles title against Luxembourg’s Gilles Muller, a lefty with a big serve that defeated 8th seeded Go Soeda of Japan 6-4, 6-3 to gain a spot in the finals. Muller’s serve dominated the match with 17 aces, winning over 90 percent of his first serve points in only 74 minutes over his 54th ranked opponent.  Muller said he had no plans to watch the semis but understood he would face a good player in the championship match. A victory would mark his fist title at the Atlanta tournament.

At stake is a trophy along with an $86,270 check for the winner with the runner up receiving $45, 435 and 150 ranking points. Roddick has faced Gilles at least three times losing once in 2005 but readily admitted that loss was a long time ago. “I’m going to have to put a lot of returns in play against him. He will probably try and come to the net more often than John (Isner) and his serve will be coming from a different angle.”

Two American players will compete on opposing teams in the doubles final. Matthew Ebden (AUS) and Ryan Harrison (USA) defeated 1st seeded Colin Fleming (GBR) and Ross Hutchins (GBR) 6-4, 6-4. Xavier Malisse (BEL) and Michael Russell (USA) earned a spot in the finals by defeating Raven Klaasen (RSA) and Donald Young (USA) 6-7(2), 6-4, 10-5.

#

Audraine Jackson is covering the BB&T Atlanta Open for Tennis Panorama News July 14-22, 2012. Audraine is a sports blogger, digital journalist and tennis addict. Follow her live updates on @tennisnewsTPN and personal twitter account @atlstoryteller.

Share

Atlanta Results and Schedule

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 21 JULY, 2012

Singles – Semi-finals
[4] A Roddick (USA) d [1] J Isner (USA) 64 67(5) 64
G Muller (LUX) d [8] G Soeda (JPN) 64 63

Doubles – Semi-finals
M Ebden (AUS) / R Harrison (USA) d [1] C Fleming (GBR) / R Hutchins (GBR) 64 64
X Malisse (BEL) / M Russell (USA) d R Klaasen (RSA) / D Young (USA) 64 46 10-5

SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 22 JULY, 2012

STADIUM COURT start 3:00 pm
[4] A Roddick (USA) vs G Muller (LUX)
M Ebden (AUS) / R Harrison (USA) vs X Malisse (BEL) / M Russell (USA)

Share