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Serena Williams Posts Grand Slam Title No. 17 As She Captures 5th U.S. Open Win

Monday, September 9, 2013

History in the making as American Serena Williams wins fifth U.S. Open title racking up a massive 17 Grand Slam Titles in total.

New York - Serena Williams is already regarded as one of the greatest women’s players in history, with arguably the greatest serve of all-time to go with a tremendous fight, determination and power ground strokes that few other women can match.

 And on a night where her serve was not at its best, it was her fight and determination that powered her through errors, wind and Victoria Azarenka, 7-5, 6-7, 6-1, in two hours and 45 minutes for her fifth career US Open title and 17th major championship. It is her second Grand Slam title of the year, to go with her French Open crown, and even though she had 16 Slams under her belt coming to New York, this title means just as much as all the others – and makes her season all the better.

“It means a lot to me, this trophy, and every single trophy that I have," she said following her victory. "It makes me feel that I'm still fighting just to be a part of this fabulous sport. I was so focused these two and a half, three weeks really. I have just been so focused and just really kind of crazy where I'm not losing. What's unique is just the fact of finally reaching No. 5 at the Open, so that's pretty cool."

It was the longest US Open women’s final since 1980, and with the win, Serena earned the largest paycheck in women’s tennis history at $3.6 million – $2.6 million for her US Open win and an additional $1 million in bonus prize money for winning the Emirates Airline US Open Series Bonus Challenge this summer. She also improved her record in Grand Slam finals to an impressive 17-4, her record against Azarenka to 12-3 and put her one Grand Slam title shy of tying Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova’s haul of 18 majors.

“I felt almost disappointed with my year, to be honest," she said. "I won the French Open, but I wasn't happy with my performances in the other two Slams. I definitely feel a lot better with at least a second Grand Slam under my belt this year.”

source: usopen.org
photos by: AP

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2011 U.S.OPEN DAY 2: 18-Year Old Sloane Stephens Debuts With A Win!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Sloane Stephens, USA
Reka-Luka Jani, Hungary
American Sloane Stephens, three-time junior Grand Slam doubles champion will now break into the WTA top 100 for the first time due to her win over Hungarian Reka-Luca Jani.

It took some doing, and three sets to accomplish the 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (3) victory over Jani, but Sloane hung in there and tactics outlasted errors.

Israli Shahar Peer awaits Sloane in round 2 - she won't be nearly as generous with errors.

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ITF Chief Says Ban Unlikely For Serena Williams

Saturday, November 14, 2009

By Andrew Dampf (AP) -- Top-ranked Serena Williams will most likely receive a "significant" fine but no suspension for her U.S. Open tirade, the president of the International Tennis Federation said.

Grand Slam administrator Bill Babcock is expected to give his recommendation to the Grand Slam committee, which probably will announce the sanction Monday or Tuesday.

"I don't think (an Australian Open ban) would make much sense, because it would penalize the people handing out the punishment," Francesco Ricci Bitti told The Associated Press on Saturday. "For the Grand Slam committee to exclude her from a Grand Slam doesn't seem likely."

The Grand Slam committee is composed of Ricci Bitti and the four Grand Slam presidents.

Williams was fined $10,000 after her profanity-laced outburst at a lineswoman during her semifinal loss to Kim Clijsters in September. A fine from the ITF could be much greater.

"A significant financial penalty makes much more sense. But it has to be significant enough for the fans (to appreciate) it," Ricci Bitti said. "Of course it may not be significant for Serena Williams, who earns tens of millions."

By winning the season-ending tour championship last weekend, Williams set the record for single-season prize money in women's tennis by topping $6.5 million in 2009. Her career prize money is a record $28.5 million.

Ricci Bitti spoke at the Fed Cup final between the United States in Italy. Serena and Venus Williams decided not to play in the Fed Cup final after meeting in the final of the season-ending championship last weekend in Doha, Qatar.

The ITF president is also involved in a request by the World Anti-Doping Agency to investigate Andre Agassi's recent admission that he took crystal meth in 1997.

Agassi wrote in his soon-to-be-released autobiography "Open" that he ingested the drug and then lied to the ATP to avoid a suspension after failing a doping test.

Ricci Bitti is also a member of WADA's executive committee.

"The WADA code is our reference point and in every doping case the rules are quite clear. There is an eight-year period for sanctions to apply," Ricci Bitti said. "In terms of the regulations, there is nothing that can be done because we're past the eight-year period. It's more upsetting than anything else — for our sport and for the players."

Still, Ricci Bitti noted that the ATP should have a dossier on the case.

"We'll see what happens," he said.

In another drug-related case, the ITF confirmed a one-year suspension for Belgian tennis players Yanina Wickmayer and Xavier Malisse on Saturday. The duo was suspended by a Belgian tribunal this week for failing to report their whereabouts to anti-doping officials three times during 2009.

"This reminds me of the cases of Italian players involved in betting a little while ago," Ricci Bitti said. "These players need to be aware of their responsibilities. If they don't know, this is the result.

"These cases create discussion because they're not reliant on positive tests, but there are rules to respect," Ricci Bitti added. "We're awaiting the details from the Belgian federation. These kids need to wake up. They're professionals and they earn a lot of money. They don't need to merely know the rules, they should also respect them."

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Serena Williams And Kim Clijsters Headline U.S. Open Semifinal Friday

Friday, September 11, 2009

Serena Williams brings her trademark intensity to the women’s semifinals, and opponent Kim Clijsters needs no reminding.

“I’ve seen her play here, and she has that face where she’s like, ‘Okay, I’m here to do business,’’’ Clijsters said.

Williams knows exactly what the Belgian is talking about. “I see it after in photos,” Williams said. “I’m pretty horrified sometimes. I think, ‘Oh, my God, who is that?’

’Despite Clijsters’ stellar play since coming out retirement, Williams goes in as the favorite. She’s also expected to clinch a third Grand Slam title this season and 12th overall.

The Williams-Clijsters showdown highlights Friday’s action, weather permitting, with teens Caroline Wozniacki and Yanina Wickmayer facing off in the other semifinal. Wozniacki, Denmark’s darling, and Wickmayer, Clijsters’ fellow Belgian, had never before appeared in a Grand Slam quarterfinal, much less a semifinal.

Williams leads Clijsters 7-1 in their head-to-heads and hasn’t dropped a set through five matches, avoiding the blips that sometimes accompany her early round Grand Slam encounters.

Williams heads the tournament in aces and points won behind her first serve. Ominously for Clijsters, Williams has only been broken in two matches, in the first and third rounds. She stepped up her game as the competition got better, overpowering Slovak Daniela Hantuchova and cruising past surging Italian Flavia Pennetta.

And here’s a stat – Williams’ last defeat in a Grand Slam semifinal came six years ago on the clay at the French Open, her least productive surface.

“It doesn’t mean that you don’t get a chance when you get to play her,” Clijsters, officially a wild card because she has no ranking yet, said. “That’s something I’ve always felt in the past, too. Every player always has a moment in a match where, whether it’s one or two games, they just kind of lose that aggressiveness a little bit or lose focus. It’s up to the other player to kind of feel that and step it up at that time.”

Clijsters, who captured her lone major at the US Open four years ago, has had a few bumps on her road to the semis, beginning in the first round against unpredictable Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli. Then in the fourth round, Clijsters fell 6-0 to Serena’s older sister, Venus, in the second set, recovering in the third.

Clijsters, like Williams, enters the clash with a 12-match winning streak in New York. A feel good story thanks to being one of the few moms on tour – and one of the most popular players around – Clijsters had the crowd on her side against Williams.

Her forehand is still big, and the movement still impressive. Williams, too, is coming off a marathon 2 ½ hour doubles semifinal Thursday.

“Seems like she’s even faster than what she was before,” Williams said after eliminating Pennetta. “I was thinking that maybe I should have a baby, and then I’ll come back faster. That was my observation, so I’m thinking about it.”

Source: usopen.org

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Black Women Who Broke Barriers To Come Together and Honor Gibson on Opening Night

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

NEW YORK (AP) -Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Aretha Franklin, Carol Moseley Braun and other pioneering black women will come together on the U.S. Open's opening night to celebrate the legacy of late tennis star Althea Gibson.

The USTA is commemorating the 50th anniversary of Gibson's historic title at the U.S. National Championships. In 1957, she became the first black tennis player, male or female, to win the tournament, which became the Open.

"Tennis has its own Jackie Robinson, and we want to tell the world the story," said Arlen Kantarian, the USTA's chief executive of pro tennis.

Gibson will also be inducted into the U.S. Open Court of Champions, based on the result of an international media vote, during the Aug. 27 ceremony.

Titled "Breaking Barriers," the tribute to Gibson will feature trailblazers in the worlds of sports, entertainment, politics and the arts. Franklin, the first black woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, will perform. Among the other women scheduled to participate are Joyner-Kersee, the Olympic track and field champion; Braun, the former U.S. Senator; Phylicia Rashad, the "Cosby Show" actress; former WNBA star Cynthia Cooper; Winter Olympians Vonetta Flowers and Debi Thomas; tennis player Zina Garrison; astronaut Mae Jemison; and BET co-founder Sheila Johnson.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Billie Jean King and Rachel Robinson, Jackie Robinson's widow, are also expected to attend.

The tribute has been more than six months in the making, Kantarian said, and its scope grew as other trailblazing women responded with great enthusiasm to the idea.

"Once we reached out and began to let people know what we were thinking of doing, we were overwhelmed with all those who wanted to be a part of this ceremony," he said.

Gibson broke the color barrier in tennis in 1950 and went on to win 11 Grand Slam titles. She died in 2003 at the age of 76.

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