25 October, 2011

WTA Championships Year-End Oddsmaking

Seriously, did Sasha Vujacic dress Maria for the photo shoot?
Eight women have flown into Istanbul with a chance to win the 2011 WTA Year-End Championships, the very last prize of this women's tennis season.  For the most part, the women have been quite a generous bunch, sharing this year's major tournaments with Kim Clijsters (who did not qualify for the YEC), Na Li/Li Na, Petra Kvitova and Samantha Stosur each taking home one major this year.  They also spread the wealth with regard to WTA tour titles, with World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki leading the tally with six, followed by Petra Kvitova (five) and Agnieszka Radwanska (three).  What's all this sharing mean?  You almost stop thinking about who is best suited to win this event (head-to-heads, surface, streaks, etc.) and start thinking whose turn is it to come good?  It's damn near impossible to handicap the field going into this event.  That won't stop us from trying though.

20 October, 2011

Erase the Wozsterisk

It might feel like we just left the sunny, bright blue rectangles and liquid heat of Melbourne, but in a little over two weeks the 2011 WTA season will be over.  The WTA Year End Championships will debut with the world's top eight players in Istanbul next week, followed by the Consolation Games, with much of the next 16 in Bali a week later.

We've seen surprises aplenty from the women this year, Na Li reaching two major finals and coming good at Roland Garros; Petra Kvitova solidifying her young gunnette status winning the Venus (aka the big plate) at Wimbledon; Serena Williams on the razor's edge of life and death this spring and then razor's edge of calm and rage just a few months later.  It surely hasn't been a dull ten months in women's tennis, even if there hasn't been a dominant force to galvanize fans...other than the Wozsterisk.

15 October, 2011

Leave It To Soccer Fans... (Rated R for Language)

Soccer fans are known for the chants they use to get under the skin of the opposing players and sometimes the opposing crowd.  Every now and again, they'll even take on...Roger Federer?!?

This moderately vulgar, if not particularly creative, chant was videotaped during Montenegro's 2-0 loss to Switzerland during a Euro 2012 qualifier.  At least we haven't heard this one broken out in the Upper Promenade of Arthur Ashe Stadium...yet.

(via Tennis-X)

02 October, 2011

Serena Update from Aussie Open Twitter

Seventeen hours after our original exchange, the Australian Open has clarified their earlier tweet saying that Serena Williams is due to play in Melbourne in January.  After a bit of excitement, we can put this Twitter-built rumor to rest.

01 October, 2011

Breaking: Serena Williams out of Australia?

Bad news, friends and fans of women's tennis, according to the Twitter exchange I just had with @AustralianOpen, the Australian major's official Twitter account, it appears that the health concerns that are keeping Serena Williams out of Asia this fall may, in fact, keep her from contending for a sixth Australian Open crown this coming January.