The Emirates Airline U.S. Open Series continues into it’s third week, after wins by Andy Roddick and Dominika Cibulkova in Atlanta and Carlsbad over the weekend.
Andy Roddick gained confidence before heading to London, coming from behind to defeat Gilles Muller 1-6, 7-6(2), 6-2 in the Atlanta Open final. It is Andy’s 32nd career ATP World Tour title, ranking him 3rd among active players with career titles (behind Federer and Nadal). This year before Wimbledon, Andy won Eastborne – so he has won two of his last three events, and 11 of 12 matches.
Fellow Olympian Mardy Fish withdrew from Atlanta while playing Muller in the second round. Mardy turned his right ankle during a collision with the net-post, but says he’s ready to represent the U.S. in the 2012 London Games.
The ladies played their U.S. Open Series event in Carlsbad last week, where Dominika Cibulkova beat Marion Bartoli 6-1, 7-5 in the final – that’s he second career WTA title. Dominika will represent Slovakia in both single and doubles at the Olympic Games next week.
This week, for the guys who aren’t competing in London, the U.S. Open Series is in Los Angeles for the Farmers Classic at UCLA. Some top American names include: Sam Querrey, Brian Baker, James Blake, Robby Ginepri and Jack Sock. The ladies’ U.S. Open Series will continue at the Rogers Cup in Canada starting August 3rd.
Other tournament winners over the weekend include Thomaz Bellucci over Janko Tipsarevic on clay in the Gstaad final; Juan Monaco over Tommy Haas in the German Open final at Hamburg; and Polona Hercog over Mathilde Johansson in the Swedish Open final. This week, in other tournaments around the world – the guys are in Austria and the ladies are in Azerbaijan.
American players heading to London, preparing for the Olympic Games include: Mardy Fish, Andy Roddick, John Isner, Ryan Harrison and Donald Young. Bob and Mike Bryan (2008 Bronze Medalists) will return, while Isner and Roddick will make up the second doubles team.
For her six woman roster, Mary Jo Fernandez chose Serena and Venus Williams, Christina McHale, Varvara Lepchenko and the doubles team of Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond. Yes, Venus will be playing singles as well as doubles; in fact, she and Serena have yet to lose a doubles match at the Olympic Games. They’ve won Gold in Athens and Beijing, and look to win a third this Summer in London.
Mixed doubles is back in the Games for the first time since 1924. Roger Federer tried to get Martina Hingis to come back and play, but she said it would be too difficult for her to start training again to play at the top-level, not to mention Roger is already playing in the Olympic singles and doubles draws. Serena says she’s willing to play a third event in London, and there will only be 16 teams in the draw…so after winning two rounds, players are guaranteed hardware.
The tennis event at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games starts this Saturday. The $42-million Opening Ceremony is coming up Friday afternoon here at home (Friday Night in London)…starting around 1:30 CDT.
Here’s the reigning Wimbledon Champ talking about his chances at this year’s Summer Games. In 2004, I was lucky enough to be in Athens announcing on Court-2 when a young Czech named Tomas Berdych eliminated him from the singles competition…and Tomas has actually ‘had Roger’s number’ a few times since!