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U.S. Open Tennis Championships 2016 - Aug 29 - Sep 11, 2016


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Did anybody watch the Murray - Nishikori match yesterday?

In my entire life, I don't think I've ever seen such a momentum change from a single event.

During the 4th set, Murray had a break point to go up 2-0, was in a slightly advantageous position during that point, and was well on his way towards closing out the match. 

Then, during the point, feedback from the PA system went off, and the umpire (*correctly*, in my opinion) called a let.

Murray positively imploded, complaining that in the first set, the umpire said they'd play on anytime there's crowd noise. (The umpire replied, 'Yes, but this was more than just crowd noise," and she was right.)

Nishikori then won 14 of the next 16 points, breaking Murray, and running out the 4th set 6-1!

And then somehow, as if scripted, he hung on to win the 5th set 7-5.

In Murray's mind, the feedback was the sole cause of the loss, but I know from experience that players often look for an excuse to lose, and Murray happened to find one to rally around. He fell apart mentally, and that's why he lost - he complained about this one event after every single point for several *games*.

"Andy Murray Enters Full Meltdown Mode in Kei Nishikori U.S. Open Defeat - But Will He Ever Change?" by Charlie Eccleshare on telegraph.co.uk

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Had a lot of fun this year. Hit the quals. twice during the week before the tournament (they're free & easy to get into) & saw some really good players that probably will never get far enough to be noticed but were fun to watch. Only Ryan Harrison really stood out.  Went opening day Mon & then Wed. On Monday, we were able to watch Hingis, Djokovic & Murray practice and see parts of matches like Isner squeaking by 19 year old Tiafoye in a 5th set tiebreak, Monfils entertaining on Court 17, etc. Then, on Wed, we were in the new Grandstand for Ryan Harrison's upset of a cramping Raonic & caught lots of great doubles including Hingis/Paes teaming up and winning against Tiafoye & his partner (who was excellent but I can't recall her name) & Mahut/Herbert showing how it's done in men's doubles.  Back again Saturday & watched as Hingis/Paes lost to Ram/Vandeweghe while Vandeweghe/Hingis teamed up & won in the Women's Doubles.  Thought that was the end of my attendance this year & was pretty content with it.  However...

I had already kissed off today's free "Community Day", figuring it'd be an overcrowded shitshow, where everyone comes to see the 2 or 3 doubles matches being played and there'd be nothing else going on.  This morning I realized that our once every 2 weeks apartment cleaner would be here this afternoon, Ginny was going off to play tennis with her friends in Central Park &, since I played yesterday & have a game tomorrow, I had already turned down a couple of offers for today.  So, against my better judgment, I decided to be brave & to visit the US Open one more time.  


Sometimes things just work out.  No traffic driving there at 10:30am & found a parking spot literally one block from the entrance to the park.  That's another $30 savings (I always park on the streets on the side of the park nearer the back entrance to the Open).  Walked to the gate before 11:30 (matches started at noon today) and found no line.  Went in and found no crowd.  Court 6 had the first "Champions Doubles" match about to start: Martina Navratilova/Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario vs Tracy Austin/Gigi Fernandez.  Went there and found easy viewing from courtside.  Took pictures, watched the match.  Very entertaining &, damn, are they still good.  Figured I'd push my luck and see if I could get into the new Grandstand, where the Woman's Doubles Semi's were being held, featuring Hingis/Vandeweghe (#5 seeds) vs Garcia/Mladenovic (#1 seeds).  Not only did I get in, but there were lots of seats in the shade, only one section up from the court.  Great viewing, although I only stayed one set, since I didn't like the fact that Hingis/Vandeweghe were getting their butts kicked.  Back to the Court 6 retirees matches, where I again stood courtside, this time watching Lindsay Davenport/Mary Jo Fernandez win over Iva Majoli/Dinara Safina, then watching the first set of Philippoussis/Pat Cash vs Michael Chang/Rick Leach.  Nice.  Enough easy watching, I left around 4pm, drove my car the 4 or so blocks to Corona's Lemon Ice King & scarfed down a great vanilla chip ices.  Drove home thru moderate traffic.  As I said, sometimes things just work out.



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I'm watching the finals of the Boys' Singles Championship, and #1 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece) is destroying his opponent, #11 seed Kenneth Raisma (Estonia) - he just this minute won the first set 6-1. 

Tsitsipas looks like a man playing against a boy - his game is complete, with no obvious holes in it, and only time will tell if he has the mental drive to become a champion on the men's pro tour. Tsitsipas has a solid, one-handed backhand and a very good net game - the closest game comparable to his, style-wise, on the tour right now is Stanislaus Wawrinka, but this is how I imagine Pete Sampras would have played, had he played in this generation.

Remember the name Stefanos Tsitsipas.

PS - There aren't even 100 people in the stadium for this match.

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