Tuesday, September 8, 2009

US Open Day 9: Girls Can Be Knights, Too

Curtain Call
Player: Flavia Pennetta
Nation: Italy
Age: 27
Current Ranking: #10
Notable Conquest: Vera Zvonareva (Russia), 7th seed
Tour Page: http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/page/Player/Info/0,,12781~6578,00.html
Today's Match: loss to Serena Williams (USA) in straight sets

By the time most players hit 27, their best tennis years are behind them. Pennetta, however, has had an amazing summer, rising to the highest ranking of her career on August 17th. Coolest of all, at least in my daughter's eyes, is the fact that she is a Knight in Italy. It all came to an end tonight against Serena but there's certainly no shame in that.

I just love the murderer's row that is the men's tennis tour these days. In an earlier post, I mentioned that the gang lining up behind Federer and Nadal gets scarier all the time. Today, they got a new recruit. Marin Cilic has been dogged by high expectations for a while now and his straight-set pasting of Murray today was a coming of age. Sure, Murray wasn't at his best but the scoreline (7-5, 6-2, 6-2) shows that this one wasn't even close. Gonzalez's triumph over Tsonga was nowhere near as shocking but still served as a wonderful indication that with so many of the top players still around at this stage, there will be no easy matches from here on out. As I write this, Monfils sure doesn't look like he intends to give Nadal a free pass.

The Champions' Team Tennis competition begins tomorrow - a new format for the old-timers portion of the program. Team King vs. Team Lendl is on the docket. Does this mean Ivan will actually be playing? Sounds like it's worth stopping by.

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