Match Recap from Announcer Andy Taylor, Voice of the US Open
Dominic Thiem returns to the Quarterfinals
Fantastic result from a nervous Dominic Thiem. Why nervous? Because Thiem, like most in the locker room, respects Felix Auger-Aliassime’s next-level talent and athleticism. The Canadian is only 20-years-old. He reached 3 Tour-level Finals last year, then 2-more in 2020 before the pandemic slammed the brakes on the season. This was Felix’s first trip to the 4th-Round of a Major. He had nothing to lose.
Thiem’s only hiccup came late in the first set, when – up a break – he failed to serve it out. He took the tiebreak by the thinnest of margins, then played ridiculously well the rest of the way. His footwork was phenomenal, getting every ball back, further crushing Auger-Aliassime’s will. In just over 2-hours, Dominic Thiem earned a spot in his 7th Major Quarterfinal — second here at the US Open.
Novak Djokovic is out. Opportunity for the 3-time Major Finalist
Yesterday, the World #1 inadvertently struck a linesperson with a ball, resulting in an automatic default. Should Thiem reach his 4th Major Final this week – he won’t face Novak, Roger or Rafa, who’ve held an absolute juggernaut on Slam titles for last 15-years. Dominic Thiem’s last four Grand Slam Finals:
- 2020 AO: Novak Djokovic def Dominic Thiem | 6-4, 4-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4
- 2019 RG: Rafael Nadal def Dominic Thiem | 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1
- 2018 RG: Rafael Nadal def Dominic Thiem | 6-4, 6-3, 6-2
Dominic gets 21-year-old Aussie Alex De Minaur next, who’s taken out Andrej Martin, Richard Gasquet, Karen Khachanov and Vasek Pospisil to reach his first Grand Slam Quarterfinal.
Head to Head: First meeting between these two players
 Dominic Thiem -03- (AUT) | Round-4 Announcer Introduction
In January, he reached his 3rd Grand Slam Singles Final at the Australian Open, and is back in Round 4 of the US Open as the World #3. From Austria, Dominic Thiem.
- R4 — W |  Felix Auger-Aliassime -21- (CAN) | Score: 7-6(4), 6-1, 6-1
- R3 — W |  Marin Cilic -38- (CRO) | Score: 6-2, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 | RECAP
- R2 — W | Sumit Nagal -124- (IND) | Score: 6-3, 6-3, 6-2 | RECAP
- R1 — W | Jaume Munar -105- (ESP) | Score: 7-6(6), 6-3 RET
 Felix Auger-Aliassime -21- (CAN) | Round-4 Announcer Introduction
In 2018, he qualified for the main draw of a Major for the first time right here at the US Open. 2-year-later, he’s a top-25 talent making his 4th-Round Grand Slam debut. From Canada, Felix Auger-Aliassime.
- R4 — L |  Dominic Thiem -03- (AUT) | Score: 6-7(4), 1-6, 1-6
- R3 — W | Corentin Moutet -77- (FRA) | Score: 6-1, 6-0, 6-4
- R2 — W | Andy Murray -115- (GBR) | Score: 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 | RECAP
- R1 — W | Thiago Monteiro -83- (BRA) | Score: 6-3, 6-7(7), 7-6(6), 7-6(6)
A New Reality | 2020 US Open Tennis Championships
In late February and early March, announcer Andy Taylor compèred two of the final professional tennis events before the global coronavirus pandemic put the skids on the 2020 season. In Doha, he hosted Aryna Sabalenka’s relentless run to the Qatar Total Open title. Then in Honolulu, he emceed Team USA’s Davis Cup Qualifier victory over Uzbekistan. Including Bob and Mike Bryan’s final professional match.
As U.S. coronavirus cases continued to mount, the day following Team USA’s 4-0 victory, all professional sports came to a grinding halt. Over the next five months, as Americans stayed home and “socially distanced,” nearly 6-million contracted the illness. Tragically, over 180-thousand perished. Worldwide, COVID-19 killed over 840-thousand and sickened 25-million (at the time of this writing).
New York hosts the resumption of the 2020 tennis season
Early on, New York City was the epicenter of COVID’s outbreak. The Billie Jean King National Tennis Center became prime real estate for New York’s coordinated pandemic response. Additionally, the state used Louis Armstrong Stadium as a warehouse to pack meals for patients, front-line workers and students dependent on the city’s school lunch program.
In late July, after New York “flattened the curve,” Governor Cuomo green-lighted the USTA’s plans to resume the 2020 tennis season in Flushing. Without fans. Without qualifying. Rather, the Western & Southern Open moved from Cincinnati to the grounds of the US Open. Furthermore, the USTA implemented strict COVID-19 testing policies. It limited the number in each player’s entourage. Additionally, it created a protective “Bubble” for all tournament participants at nearby hotels and on-site.
Announcer Andy Taylor | 19th US Open Tennis Championships
After a five month pause, with the coronavirus “politicized” and still spreading unchecked through portions of the population, Andy was hesitant when asked to be a part of the sport’s return. However, after carefully considering the USTA’s extensive health and safety protocols, he soon realized the US Open could in fact be one of the safest environments to avoid COVID’s spread.
Masks are mandatory. For crew, testing occurs every fourth day. To ensure best broadcast quality, the USTA understood that Arthur Ashe Stadium’s announcer would need to work without a mask. Therefore, they isolated Andy in his own booth. Thus, keeping production team members free from aerosols emitted during player introductions.
Rather than fly, Andy drove to Flushing. He uses his own vehicle to shuttle back and forth from the hotel to the venue, which limits his exposure to others. Additionally, this allowed Andy to bring his own hot plate and coffee machine, completely eliminating the need for others to bring him meals and supplies. Essentially, the Voice of the US Open is working from a bubble within “The Bubble.” Responsibly limiting contact with colleagues and players as much as humanly possible.
A new Grand Slam Global Pandemic Presentation
With the global emphasis on social distancing to avoid further outbreaks of COVID-19, the world of sport production is reinventing “the show” by harnessing new technologies that have emerged over the past decade. As always, the core goal is to meet fans where they are.
In other words, with fans exclusively watching on television – or on-the-go through mobile devices – the 2020 US Open “stadium show” is now geared toward the camera, rather than the ticket holder. This year, Andy and the stadium production team are working closely with ESPN to integrate the broadcast and stadium presentations. Instead of narrating player introductions exclusively for fans on site, intros and all aspects of the stadium show are now part of the broadcast product streamed to fans worldwide.
The true creator is necessity, who is the mother of our invention.
Jowett | English translation of Plato’s “Republic”
Live sport presentation is a brave new world. Through perseverance and bold experimentation, the US Open continues to innovate; determined to feed each tennis fan’s hunger after five months of the world’s new and humbling collective-reality.