August 28, 2013 – US Open first rounds
Definitely one of the most far-reaching build-ups to the US Open in recent memory, the personalities just as developed as the level on the court has risen. Folks are still waiting to see Battle of the Sexes 2013 Serena versus Andy Murray, and for Patrick McEnroe to be put in charge of checking the under-age kids for ID at the door.
Full credit must go to Major League Baseball for the foresight of scheduling the Mets at home this week to further aggravate the traffic and parking problems. We have heard that Serena has ordered a bicycle to put on standby – just in case. Thankfully the Mets will hit the road Week 2.
American Victoria Duval pulled off the upset of the tournament so far – showing that the crowd getting behind American players on the main courts can make a difference – by taking 11-seed Sam Stosur in a 3-set match that Stosur didn’t lose…Victoria simply won.
Of the other young Americans to watch, Jamie Hampton may not be as well-known at home as Sloane Stephens, but she could put together an Oudin-type run of her own this year at the Open. A real test comes with her second round match against the big French serve of Kristina Mladenovic. Allison Riske versus Mona Barthel should be one of the better second round match-ups as well.
Players to watch?
Li Na and Radwanska the Elder are playing some of their most focused tennis right now and should meet up at some point down the road. But Sabine Lisicki and Jelena Jankovich lie on that path as well, so whoever makes it out will have to earn it.
We have not seen Bojana Jovanovski looking this good since playing Caroline Wozniacki in Rome, while Petra Kvitova played a lot of extra sets in Cincinnati last week and an extra one already in the first round against the Japanese Doi . The Kvitova-Jovanovski second round match could get very interesting.
Sara Errani served up double doughnuts to the young Australian Rogowska in round one and could go deep in the singles draw should, heaven forbid, the doubles partnership with Roberta Vinci run into first round problems with Hingis and Hantuchova.
When the crowd gives Serena’s opponent a standing ovation for winning a game at 0-6 0-5, does that indicate that Serena is still the one to beat this year? Or does that honour go to Vika – who won one better at 6-0 6-0 and still didn’t feel she played her best tennis…full credit to Serena for permitting Schiavone and the crowd to have their moment to remember.