Saturday, September 10, 2005

Venus and Serena Understand

Last Sunday, I went to the US Open with a few friends for the 2nd year in a row. Last year, we went to an evening session, but this year, we went in the afternoon, which made it a much more pleasurable experience for me in all but one respect (the blazing sun, more below). Last year, we only got to see a few matches in the gigantic Arthur Ashe Stadium. Not that I'm complaining, mind you. One of the matches featured Maria Sharapova and another featured Martina Navratilova in mixed doubles action, which was cool to see, but we didn't get a chance to explore the smaller courts and matches. This year, watching (among others) the 30th seed in the mens' singles play a Norwegian player on a tiny court and being merely a few feet away from the action was liberating in the same way that being up front at a club is different from watching a band in an arena. After watching that as well as a mens' doubles match (an Israeli team versus an American one) on a slightly bigger court, we went to the main stadium (Arthur Ashe) and once again watched Sharapova. This time, she decimated her Mexican opponent (again the name eludes me now; her first name was Sonia; but it was cool to see that she had a fan section with fans hoisting Mexican flags and cheering her on) in straight sets and in the highlighted match of the afternoon set, the Williams set met each other in the 3rd round in womens' singles action. Unfortunately, the heavily-touted match was a bit of a letdown. The first set was thrilling and competitive with Venus winning 7-6 (I think the tiebreaker was 7-5) with Venus coming from behind to win but the second set wasn't even close, with Venus plainly outplaying her younger sister and coasting 6-2. And that was it. Although it wasn't blazingly hot, I still sat right near where I got the most sun during the earlier matches and despite applying lots of sunburn (recommended), I still got a bit burned on my forehead, possibly from sweating so match, thereby negating the effect of the sunscreen. Oh well. Either way, I'll definitely be back next year. What a great event. I'll just wear a hat next year!

np: 45 Grave-Sleep in Safety


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