October 16th, 2015

Friday Tennis Blog: Federer Pizza Curse? Florida League Teams at USTA Nationals

Adult Leagues Friday Blog


roger federer pizzaRoger Federer may forgo his forays into pizza making in Shanghai after losing in the first round this week to a qualifier. The tournament’s defending champion, Federer was asked to create an original pizza that would be served in the players’ restaurant at the tournament. “Because a lot of pizzas were taken, the classic ones, I came up with one that I like — figs, arugula salad, prosciutto, and creme fraiche, and extra mozzarella, if you like,” the Swiss said. Federer put his loss to Spanish qualifier Albert Ramos-Vinolas in perspective, considering he saved five match points in the first round last year at Shanghai before going on to win the title. “I just think the first round here in Shanghai has always been historically quite difficult, getting used to the conditions and the surface and the balls. Last year I got lucky. This year I didn’t. So it’s a pity.” But more time to eat pizza. Oh, and the name of his pizza creation? “It’s the ‘Figalicious,'” said the Swiss with a smile. “I don’t know if you know, but the name is really important.”


At NationalsDuring the first two weeks of USTA League Nationals play, Florida teams have racked-up a 1st, two 2nds, and two 4th-place finishes in Arizona and California. Claiming the 18 & Over women’s 3.0 championship was the team out of Casselberry (Red Bug Park), who beat a squad from USTA Southern California Section (Coronado) 3-2 in the final. Another team out of Red Bug Park in Casselberry finished second at the 18 & Over women’s 3.5 championships, and the 18 & Over women’s 5.0+ team out of Tampa finished second at the 18 & Over 5.0+ national championships in Indian Wells. “We went from a slow start on the first day with an 0-2 record to picking up ourselves and never giving up with a 2-0 record on day two, and securing the wild card to the semis by four games,” said Tampa 5.0+ team member Chris Allen. “We celebrated a great semifinal win 2-1 over Southern Cal on Sunday morning and fought a very tough finals against a very good Southern team, falling short 1-2.” Finishing in fourth place were the Tallahassee 18 & Over 3.5 men, and the 18 & Over women’s 4.0 team out of Oakland Park.


mardy fish foundationAmerican world No. 1-ranked junior Taylor Fritz became the youngest American in eight years to win a pro event since Donald Young last weekend when he captured the ATP Challenger in Sacramento, Calif., beating fellow American Jared Donaldson in the final…Prize money for the 2016 Australian Open will rise by 10 percent to $32 million USD…A number of players are limping to the end of the ATP and WTA seasons, but rather than heal-up during the brief off-season, few can say no to exhibition cashGenie Bouchard has filed a lawsuit against the USTA for slipping and falling in the locker room during the US Open…James Blake is turning his NYC police incident into a positive, including joining Twitter…Chris Evert headlined the festivities last night at the annual gala for the MaliVai Washington Youth Foundation……Team Fish, a group of families working together on behalf of the Mardy Fish Children’s Foundation in Vero Beach, in recent months have supported Special Olympics and the Beachside 5K and Half-Marathon benefiting The Healthy Start Coalition of IRC. Next up — the New York City Marathon where Tom Fish, father of Mardy, will “Run for the Kids” to raise money for the foundation.

Venus, Brengle Into WTA Weekend

VenusWilliams_Sa02Two American women remain in play entering the weekend at WTA events in Linz, Austria, and in Hong Kong where No. 3 seed Venus Williams is into the quarterfinals.

On Thursday Venus rolled over China’s Yufei Wang 6-0, 6-2, and in the quarters will meet No. 8 seed Alize Cornet at the Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open.

“We haven’t played that often — we’ve played a handful of times, and usually quite a lot of space in between each time,” said Venus who is 4-0 career against Cornet. “She had a long match today, and doubles too, and that can go either way. You can be a little fatigued, or you can have a lot of rhythm from playing so many balls. I think most likely it’s going to be a lot of rhythm from playing so many balls, so it’s going to be tough.”

Unseeded Madison Brengle is the lone American remaining at the Generali Ladies Linz, and on Friday will face fellow unseeded player Johanna Larsson of Sweden.

The last American exited the Shanghai Masters on Thursday when No. 13-seeded John Isner was edged 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4 by No. 3 Andy Murray in the round of 16.


They Said It


James Blake

“One could say James Blake being hit [at the US Open] is another pointer that you don’t get rid of racism with the stroke of a pen. ‘OK, that doesn’t exist anymore!’ It’s not that simple.”
— The Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards speaking to Rolling Stone magazine

“Nothing is impossible. I have that kind of mindset. I know that it’s still a long way to break his record. But people even mentioning and talking about it, obviously it flatters me.”
Novak Djokovic, currently with 10 Grand Slam titles, on breaking Roger Federer’s record of 17

“I think it has to be your choice, especially that it’s after Singapore. So it makes your season much longer. Two weeks does a lot for us.”
Aggie Radwanska on the WTA forcing players who qualify to compete in the WTA Elite Trophy event featuring players who did not qualify for the WTA Finals


Tennis on TV This Weekend

(times subject to change)

1:30-9:30am — ATP Shanghai (live), Tennis Channel
9:30am-midnight — ATP Shanghai (delay), Tennis Channel

4:30-10:30am — ATP Shanghai (live), Tennis Channel
10:30am-2:30pm — ATP Shanghai (delay), Tennis Channel
2:30-6pm — WTA Tianjin (delay), Tennis Channel
6-8pm — WTA Linz (delay), Tennis Channel

6-9:30am — Center Court (Shanghai, Tianjin, Linz), live, Tennis Channel
9:30-11:30am — WTA Tianjin (delay), Tennis Channel
11:30am-2pm — ATP Shanghai (delay), Tennis Channel
2-4pm — WTA Linz (delay), Tennis Channel