Tantric Tennis…5:53

Stupendous. Pick another word from the dictionary of excellence and it will fall short of doing justice to what the world’s two best tennis players served up for an astonishing five hours and 53 minutes in the final of the 2012 Australian Open…It was the 100th anniversary of this tournament, and Novak Djokovic, who somehow managed to hold on to his crown, celebrated in a manner that will be talked of down the ages.

Djokovic beat Rafael Nadal — his predecessor as world No. 1 — 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7(5), 7-5.

The fact that there were still well more than 14,000 people in Rod Laver Arena at 1:40 on a Monday morning says everything one needs to know about just how riveting this duel was; how extraordinary the level of skill and commitment from both men as they refused to bow to whatever the scoreboard was saying at the time and fought on, giving every last drop of energy in their bodies.

For Djokovic to have prevailed — after needing four hours and 50 minutes to beat Andy Murray in Friday’s semifinal — makes him superhuman.


Husky Men drop one in Nevada (Friday Night)

Deonte Burton scored 31 points, including a game-tying 3-pointer late in regulation and eight of Nevada’s 10 points in overtime, as the Wolf Pack defeated Washington 76-73 on Friday night.

Nevada (5-3) trailed 65-60 with 34 seconds remaining in regulation.

Malik Story, who finished with 13 points, hit a 3-pointer with 16.4 seconds left and, after a Washington free throw, Burton made his shot behind the arc with 4.3 seconds to go.

Terrance Ross, who led Washington (4-2) with 18 points, scored the first four points in overtime before Burton registered a three-point play and hit a 3-pointer to put the Wolf Pack ahead 72-70 with 1:39 left.

Nevada led 74-71 with 45 seconds left when Ross cut the lead to a point with a short jumper.

Burton fed Kevin Panzer for a baseline jumper with 18.9 seconds remaining to seal the win.

Olek Czyz had 10 points for Nevada.

Tony Wroten and C.J. Wilson had 14 each for the Huskies.

Serena Fined

Serena Williams was fined $2,000 by the US Open on Monday for berating the chair umpire during the final.

Tournament referee Brian Earley issued his ruling a day after Williams was cited by chair umpire Eva Asderaki for a code violation for verbal abuse during a 6-2, 6-3 loss to Sam Stosur in the women’s singles championship match at Flushing Meadows.

A statement issued by the U.S. Tennis Association said the fine ”is consistent with similar offenses at Grand Slam events.”

Williams earned $1.4 million at the US Open: $900,000 for finishing as the runner-up, plus a $500,000 bonus for having come in first place in the US Open Series standings, which take into account results at hard-court tuneup tournaments.

The USTA also said Grand Slam committee director Bill Babcock conducted his own review and determined ”Williams’ conduct, while verbally abusive, does not rise to the level of a major offense under the Grand Slam Code of Conduct.”

That means Williams does not face further disciplinary action – which could have included a fine and suspension from a Grand Slam tournament – under the ”probationary period” she was put under after yelling at and threatening a line judge after a foot-fault call at the end of her loss to Kim Clijsters in the 2009 US Open semifinals.

US Open out to get Serena???!!

Serena Williams was….

Down a set and facing a break point in the first game of the second, the 13-time major champion hit a forehand and shouted, ”Come on!” as Samantha Stosur reached down for a backhand. Chair umpire Eva Asderaki ruled that Williams hindered Stosur’s ability to complete the point and awarded it to Stosur — putting her ahead 1-0 in that set…

Williams went over to talk to Asderaki, saying, ”I’m not giving her that game.”

Williams also said: ”I promise you, that’s not cool. That’s totally not cool.”

Some fans began booing, delaying the start of the next game as both players waited for the commotion to subside.

Tournament director Brian Earley said Asderaki’s ruling was proper.

But Williams had trouble putting the whole episode behind her.

During the changeover two games later, Williams continued to talk to Asderaki, saying, ”You’re out of control. … You’re a hater, and you’re just unattractive inside. … And I never complain. Wow.”…..

Williams also told the official: ”Really, don’t even look at me.”

When Stosur wrapped up the match with a forehand winner, Williams refused the customary post-match handshake with the chair umpire.

”I hit a winner, but I guess it didn’t count,” Williams said during the trophy presentation. ”It wouldn’t have mattered in the end. Sam played really well.”

This sort of thing has happened before at the US Open to Williams, who won the tournament in 1999, 2002 and 2008.

In the 2009 semifinals against Kim Clijsters, Williams was called for a foot-fault that set her off on a profanity-laced outburst at a line judge. Williams lost a point there, and because it came on match point, Clijsters won. That led to an immediate $10,000 fine from the U.S. Tennis Association and later a record $82,500 fine from the Grand Slam administrator, who also put Williams on a ”probationary period” at Grand Slam tournaments in 2010 and 2011.

A poor call during Williams’ 2004 U.S. Open quarterfinal loss to Jennifer Capriati was cited as a main reason for the introduction of replay technology in tennis.

Donald Young still in the Draw at US Open!


John McEnroe ruined Donald Young. Young’s parents ruined Donald Young. His own bad, lazy attitude ruined him. His agent, IMG? Ruined him. The media: Ruined him. The U.S. Tennis Associatio ruined Donald Young ….Young has been a study in all the different way to screw up an American tennis phenom. He was supposed to be tennis’ Tiger Woods. By 2007, The New York Times dubbed him a failure with a story in its Sunday magazine entitled: “Prodigy’s End.”

He was 17 at the time.

But the last, last, last straw didn’t come until this spring, when things dropped so far that Young wrote on his Twitter account: “F— USTA” and they’re “full of s—.” Only he didn’t use dashes.

So it’s a little hard to figure out how Young, now 22, is the story of this year’s US Open, after Serena Williams that is. He has beaten two seeded players to reach the fourth round, the final 16. He beat Stan Wawrinka in a classic fifth-set tiebreaker, tennis’ ultimate test of mind, body and guts. Tuesday, he’s scheduled to play No. 4 Andy Murray for a spot in the quarterfinals.

“Everybody’s light comes on at their own time,” Young said. “Hopefully, mine is coming on now.”…Young, Ryan Harrison and several young US women who reached the third round of the Open have made this quite a tournament for US tennis….Usually by the second week, Serena Williams is the only American left, Tuesday is America Day at the Open, with not only Young playing but also John Isner and Andy Roddick.


Click here for Donald Young BIO

Venus Withdraws from US Open

Venus Williams says she has been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that causes fatigue and joint pain and forced her to withdraw from the US Open.

The two-time champion pulled out Wednesday before her second-round match.

”I have been recently diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome, an autoimmune disease which is an ongoing medical condition that affects my energy level and causes fatigue and joint pain,” she said in a statement.

The 31-year-old Williams pulled out of two hard-court tuneup tournaments this summer because she was not feeling well. In her first match in two months, Williams beat Vesna Dolonts 6-4, 6-3 at Flushing Meadows on Monday.

”I enjoyed playing my first match here and wish I could continue but right now I am unable to,” she said. ”I am thankful I finally have a diagnosis and am now focused on getting better and returning to the court soon.”

Williams was supposed to play 22nd-seeded Sabine Lisicki on Wednesday.

”I’m really disappointed to have to withdraw from this year’s US Open,” she added.

US Open




The Daily’s odds: 15-1

Why she’ll win:

She made it to the Open final in 2009 against Clijsters. With the Belgian out of the tournament because of an injury, there’s nothing stopping Wozniacki from winning as the No. 1 seed.

Why she won’t:

She has been upset in her first match in two of her past three tournaments, and the press will continue to focus on her relationship with golfer Rory McIlroy. That’s one distraction too many.


The Daily’s odds:


Why she’ll win:

The second-best woman in the world was the runner-up in last year’s Wimbledon and US Open. With her maturity and improved consistency, she’ll finally put herself over the top.

Why she won’t:

The ghosts of 2009, in which she had a tearful breakdown at Arthur Ashe Stadium during a match may come back to haunt her.


The Daily’s odds:


Why she’ll win:

She continues an impressive year — she has made it to four tournament finals and has won two titles, including the recent Western & Southern Open — by breezing through the competition for her second US Open trophy.

Why she won’t:

Serena Williams will stop her, should they meet. Sharapova has lost her past six matches against her, including a quarterfinal match in Stanford.


The Daily’s odds:


Why she’ll win:

She will prove her Wimbledon victory over Sharapova wasn’t just a fluke and surprise the field with another amazing run.

Why she won’t:

Wimbledon really wasa fluke and she bows out in the early rounds.


The Daily’s odds:


Why she’ll win:

She will put together an incredible run fueled by her anger toward her low seeding and by love from the New York crowd. It’s the perfect comeback story.

Why she won’t:

Her injured toe that shut her down at the Western & Southern Open will flare up again, or she will be exhausted from a heavy schedule





Serena Advances



Defending champion Serena Williams recovered from a poor start to defeat Simona Halep 3-6, 6-2, 6-1 Thursday and move into the third round of Wimbledon, staying on course for a fifth title…..After dropping the first set, Williams regained her renowned intensity and powerful shot-making to dominate the rest of the way on Court 2. The winner of 13 Grand Slam singles titles is still searching for her form after a yearlong absence because of injuries and health issues.

There were no tears this time from Williams, who sobbed with relief on Monday after winning her opening match on Centre Court against Aravane Rezai.

”I’m just happy to be playing and hopefully I’ll get better as the tournament goes on,” Williams said. ”It was a little windy out there and I just was a little tight so I just got to relax and enjoy myself more.”

From 4-2 in the second set, the seventh-seeded American won eight out of the last nine games to re-establish her supremacy on the grass at the All England Club, pumping a clenched fist and shouting ”Come on!” after smacking key winners.

It was the fourth consecutive three-setter Williams has played since returning last week at the Eastbourne grass-court tournament. She had been out for nearly a year after two foot operations and blood clots in her lungs.

Serena & Tears of Joy


Returning to Grand Slam tennis after a year away with health problems, Serena Williams opened her Wimbledon title defense Tuesday by beating Aravane Rezai in three sets — then burst into tears on Centre Court…After serving her 13th ace to close a 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 victory, Williams buried her face in her towel and sobbed from her courtside chair. She was still crying as she left the court, overcome with emotion after enduring a long layoff that included two foot operations and treatment for blood clots in her lungs.

”I usually don’t cry … but it’s just been so hard,” the four-time Wimbledon champion said. ”I never dreamt I would be here right now. And then to win. I just wanted to win at least one match here.”

Meanwhile, the sequel to the longest match in tennis history proved to be a quick, one-sided affair this time.

John Isner beat Nicolas Mahut 7-6 (4), 6-2, 7-6 (6) in just over two hours – a far cry from their 11-hour, 5-minute marathon over three days last year that Isner finally won 70-68 in the fifth set.


Wiilliams Sisters back at Wimbledon

The women’s draw has taken on a completely different look since the sudden return of the Williams sisters. Serena won one match at Eastbourne, Venus two. Both looked threatening, although Serena, inevitably, appeared to lack match play more than her sister, who has been out of the game only six months compared with 12.….But it would be impossible to rule either or both being involved at the sharp end of the tournament. With all due respect to their rivals, Serena and Venus when playing near their best are better than anyone else on grass — and maybe on other surfaces, too.

But it is all about proving it. Serena is wary of making predictions and just talks about being happy to play again. Venus, bolder, says she is here to win. As she has done so five times, she can’t be ruled out….“Obviously no one wants to play them,” says Caroline Wozniacki, the world No. 1 who is trying to get past the problem of never having won a Grand Slam….Maria Sharapova added, “Absolutely, it’s good for the game to have them back. They’ve been champions here many years. They’re obviously the ones to beat on grass.”


The Truth about American Tennis


American tennis is at one of its lowest points in years. A look at some of the facts and figures:

Last US man to win a major — Andy Roddick, 2003 US Open

Last US woman to win a major — Serena Williams, 2010 Wimbledon

Last US woman other than a Williams sister to win a major — Jennifer Capriati, 2002 U.S. Open

Highest-ranked US man under 23 years old — Donald Young, No. 123

Highest-ranked US woman under 23 years old — Christina McHale, No. 74



a lil mo’ Serena 4 ya