By Professor Fred Whitted NORTH CAROLINA (BASN) — The title above...
Beyond Wimbledon and The Open
Normal 0CONNECTICUT (BASN) — In Tennis parlance, January is the Australian Open, May is the French Open, June is Wimbledon and August and September are the U.S. Open.
Well, July is for the exciting world of World Team Tennis. A 10-franchise series of matches begins on Wednesday, July 7th through the end of the month.
The franchise local to New York is the Sportimes, situated on Randall’s Island just a hop, skip and a jump across from Manhattan. There are other franchises throughout the country in each sports a superstar player who plays in a predominance of the team’s matches.
The format is both interesting and exciting for fans. It involves singles, doubles and mixed doubles on a multi-colored court. Coaching challenges to calls are allowed and they engender controversy in virtually every match.
New York sports a team led by 1999 Hall of Fame inductee John McEnroe, 2009 U.S. Open Champion and recent Wimbledon victim Kim Clijsters from Belgium and Florida’s Robert Kendrick.
Two of the team’s key home matches take place early in the season.
On opening night, New York takes on the Boston Lobsters, led by local favorite James Blake. The former Harvard standout and NCAA Champion was born in New York and grew up in Connecticut and always enjoys playing in the metropolitan area.
Blake suffered an early exit at Wimbledon and has not been playing well of late. He has a huge following in the Metropolitan area and they are always boisterous at his matches.
On July 15, the Washington Kastles and superstar Serena Williams invade New York, one night after McEnroe will do battle with former U.S. Open Champion Andy Roddick.
McEnroe always puts on a show for New Yorkers and with his excellent return of serve should play competitively against Roddick, a disappointing loser at Wimbledon.