Casey's fit, focused and scaling the rankings - Linda Pearce, The Sunday Age
CASEY DELLACQUA never weighs herself and has what she calls a "mental
about the skinfold tests she considers so degrading.
All she knows, and wants to hear, is that her body-fat percentage is
shrinking in line with her dress size and, not coincidentally, her
ranking has halved in the past year... After starting the season as a satellite-level player who made cameo
wildcard appearances at home each January, the 22-year-old will end
ranked in the 80s after winning her first grand slam match, qualifying
her first Wimbledon and becoming a regular on the WTA Tour.
Teenage ace serves up a storm in US - Leo Schlink, Herald Sun
Larcher de Brito, Berankis win OB junior tennis titles - Miami Herald
After winning 27 matches in a row on the ITF Junior Circuit, American Melanie Oudin fell 7-5, 6-3 to Michelle Larcher de Brito of Portugal Sunday in the Orange Bowl girls' 18s singles final.
Moments earlier, Lithuanian Ricardas Berankis ended Uladzimir Ignatik's six-month reign atop the junior tennis rankings by defeating Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6-3, 6-2 in the boys' 18s singles final.
Berankis and Larcher de Brito are the first Orange Bowl singles champions from their countries in the event's 61-year history.
''I haven't won a tournament the whole year, so finally winning one is really great,'' Larcher de Brito said.
For Roddick, the triumph in Portland, Ore., felt a lot like winning the
U.S. Open. "But a little different this time because I wasn't on the
he noted. He was on the sideline, rooting for the Bryan twins, who
the third and clinching point in the Saturday doubles.
"At 5-2 it was pretty much all but done, and I was getting pretty
on the sidelines. It was just a rush, though you look back at it now
seems like a blur," Roddick said.
The team concept has strong appeal for him, but it bothers him that
the team as only himself, Blake and the Bryans. "The thing that gets overlooked and upsets me is that Mardy [Fish] was
the team the year James was out with his illness, and Robby [Ginepri]
helped, too. And what was so cool is that they were both with us in
as practice partners."
He's also a little annoyed at the lack of publicity given the Davis Cup
the U.S. media. "It's the most participated sporting event as far as
countries, but you have trouble telling that to Americans. They'd
talk about the BCS system or who's getting arrested, as opposed to an
where the first round is played in eight different countries. I just
people here could grasp it more. It's an amazing event."
So, even though Sports Illustrated, he says, told him not to write
their choice of Brett Favre as "Sportsman of the Year" because they
would hammer them, Gimelstob instead told us what he thought of the
"It's a joke," he declared. "Even though I'm a Sports Illustrated
think it's a travesty. Roger Federer is the obvious choice."
Critics of the LTA – and they are numerous given the paucity of British players at the top end of the world rankings – maintain that the £40m spent on the National Tennis Centre at Roehampton (complete with a thermostatically controlled climate system that allows the indoor courts to replicate the baking conditions of next month’s Australian Open) wasn’t intended to help Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic in her preparation.
...“The facilities are just amazing, probably the best in the world, and the young British players are very lucky to have such a facility,” she said. “In designing this centre, it seems like they thought of everything. There is even this special pod, which is like a machine, that you can sit in to relax after training, and it speeds up the recovery time.”
...“Living in Serbia is difficult for us players at the moment,” she said. “Firstly there are not good practice facilities, but also we have become so famous that it’s not really comfortable. I got almost mobbed by fans just trying to do some shopping in a supermarket. So I am looking for somewhere as a base and London is a distinct possibility. I love being in the city with all the things there are to do, transport connections are good to anywhere in the world and there is no better place to train.”
And with that she left, although not forgetting to settle her bill with the LTA; the price of a roll of tape used to cover a blister on her racket hand.
Though appreciative of John McEnroe's efforts over the past 11 years to
this annual week of tennis nostalgia one of the box-office successes of
London sporting calendar, the organisers are looking to the future.
likely to be a revamp for 2008, with priority given to luring
Wimbledon champion Pete Sampras.
Some hard slogging at the end of the season, including reaching the final of her last event (losing to American Ashley Harkleroad) in November at a Challenger in La Quinta, Calif., gave her just enough points to make it into the Australian Open. Dubois, 21, is particularly appreciative because in both 2005 and 2007, she made the long haul to the antipodes, only to lose in the first round of Open qualifying.
“You get to Australia and you have to beat three players ranked between about 110 and 220,” she said of the qualifying. “That's a pretty high calibre.”
...Frank Dancevic of Niagara Falls, into the main draw for the second year in a row, echoes Dubois's sentiment. “I think Australia is my favourite of all the Grand Slams,” he said, “there's just something about it. Everything is really convenient, the hotel is nearby and it's well organized.”
...After a summer when he reached the final in Indianapolis (defeating Andy Roddick) and the quarter-finals of the Rogers Cup in Montreal, Dancevic, 23, said: “I felt like I belonged this year. I'm looking forward to playing again. I just hope it's not as hot as last year [at the Australian Open]. I played at 11:30 at night because it was 37 degrees [during the day] and they didn't start matches until 11 o'clock. I finished after 2 in the morning.”
Tennis Week Interview: Ken Solomon - Richard Pagliaro, Tennis Week
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