WTA: Which brands dominated the 2012 U.S. Open?

Wow. Have you been watching the U.S. Open? In the first three-set women’s final in 17 years, Serena captured her 4th U.S. Open title yesterday 6-2, 2-6, 7-5.

Serena with her trophy. Photo courtesy of Cynthia Lum

Since the French Open, Serena is 26-1, Wimbledon Champion, Olympic gold medalist, and now, U.S. Open Champion (and still only No. 4 in the world?). She’s also the first woman in her 30s to win the U.S. Open since Navratilova in 1987. Serena also holds the record for the longest span of success in the professional era at the same Grand Slam, with 13 years between her first win at 17 in 1999 and now 30 in 2012.

Afterward, Serena said, “I never give up. I never, never quit. I have come back so many times in so many matches.” She also said, “This is the first year […] in a long time, [that] I haven’t lost my cool.” And it paid off. Usually good at giving people ammo to throw at her in regards to her on-court actions, Serena remained mature and professional.

Azarenka was a tough opponent to demolish, having gone 32-2 this 2012 hard court season, with no three-set losses (she was 12-0!) until her loss to Serena in the final.  Azarenka was as close as two points from winning the championship at 5-3 in the third.

Azarenka's fighting spirit wasn't enough this tournament against the powerful Serena. Photo courtesy of Cynthia Lum

But a knight can’t ride without his steed, so what brands got our champions through the tournament this year? Which apparel and racquet company won the tournament this year?

The quarterfinals saw an array of brands that supported the players throughout the tournament, but semis was an all Nike affair in apparel. All four of the women were Swoosh athletes, and Tiff actually wrote a blog about the two finalists, so check out their apparel here on her blog!

Racquets had the 10.9oz strung weight and the 5pt HL balance of the Head YOUTEK IG Instinct in the hand of Sharapova, which is a great racquet for the intermediate through advanced player looking for spin, maneuverability, power and comfort. Azarenka got to the finals with her Wilson BLX Juice 100; a racquet for aggressive players who want a little extra zip and spin on their shots. This fast playing racquet is a must try for intermediate players and up with its 100sq in headsize and 11.3oz strung weight.  Each fiber of the 5’4″ Errani needed all the help she could get against 5’9″ Serena, with her Babolat Pure Drive Plus 2012. The longer, 27.5-inch length racquet has a stiffness rating of 70 (phew, high! But I love it!) along with a strung weight of 11.2oz. It brings even more spin and power to every shot over the standard length version. Improved feel allowed Errani to feel extremely dialed in…. To no avail! Serena dominated with her (and everyone else) with her Wilson BLX Blade Team. It gave her an incredible combination of pace and precision, and is perfect for the 3.5+ player seeking power and maneuverability. It has a 104sq in head size combined with its 10.7oz strung weight and 3pt HL balance.

Serena at the Open. Photo courtesy of Cynthia Lum

After seeing for yourself, there is no need for justification for the winners. Wilson and Nike are the indisputable champions of the 2012 U.S. Open. Make sure to check out all our offerings online and see if they have any gear to help you out on court. Although the women have finished up their battle, the men will be battling at 4 pm EST for the men’s final between Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

Over and out!

Siobhan

ATP – Which gear reigned supreme at this year’s Open?

Novak Djokovic has been dominant in this year's Open with his Head YOUTEK IG Speed 18x20 racquet.

What a great 2012 US Open thus far! Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, the two finalists for this evening’s match, have been playing incredible tennis throughout the tournament. Novak has only dropped one set, and has shown his unique ability to shot-make from every position on the court time and time again. Murray has faced some major adversity, being down a set and 1-5 in the quarterfinals to Marin Cilic and down a set again in the semis to the red-hot Tomas Berdych in crazy windy conditions, but each time he stepped up to the plate and delivered with some dominating performances to close out the matches.

Today, I want to feature some of the gear that these great champions are sporting. With so many racquet and apparel companies fighting for dominance, which ones reigned supreme at this year’s US Open?

Andy Murray's been resilient all tournament in his adidas apparel and with his Head YOUTEK IG Radical Pro racquet.

When it comes to racquets, Head absolutely dominated, with both finalists and three of the four semifinalist using their frames. Novak Djokovic‘s hard-hitting game is complimented by his Head YOUTEK IG Speed 18×20 racquet. It’s a ball-striker’s racquet with its forgiving 100 square inch headsize, light swingweight, and super solid feel. Andy Murray‘s YOUTEK IG Radical Pro helps him utilize his creativity and supreme touch all over the court. It’s known for it’s excellent stability and soft feel, along with it’s super spin friendly 16×19 string pattern. The third Head racquet being featured in this year’s semifinals was Tomas Berdych‘s YOUTEK IG Instinct. The Instinct is a player’s frame with some unique specs, it features a strung weight of only 10.9 ounces and a high stiffness rating of 69. This provides the user with a super maneuverable racquet and a crisp, solid feel from all areas of the court.

While Head was dominant on the racquet side of things, the shoes and apparel battle was a little tougher to declare a winner in. With both players rocking their gear in the finals (with Murray head-to-toe and Djokovic in just the shoes), I have to give the edge to adidas in the clothing battle. Murray has been wearing the adidas Men’s Autumn adipower Barricade Crew and the Men’s Autumn adipower Barricade Bermuda short. Both Novak and Andy are sporting the barricade 7.0 men’s shoe.  The barricade shoe line has been a favorite for recreational and elite tennis players for years because of their unmatched durability, stability, and support, and as you can see it still is a popular choice on the tour today.

Make sure to tune in at 4 pm EST tonight for the men’s final between Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. Both guys have been playing unbelievably well, showing resiliency under pressure and incredible shotmaking throughout the tournament. They have clearly been the two best players in the draw thus far. I’m going to give the slight edge to Novak in this one, toughing it out in a close 4 set battle.

Andy G.

US Open wrap up with Kveta Peschke

Kveta signing an autograph at the US Open.

Hello from NY after the finals of mixed doubles!

Mixed doubles runner-up and women’s doubles quarterfinalist are the 2 great achievements for the last Grand Slam of the year!

On one side I’m happy to have another 2nd place trophy, but at the same time it hurts as well as I consider that we had 2 Championship points in the super tiebreak!!!!!!

The score was 6-7, 1-6, 10-12.

It’s definitely a great experience to feel the fans at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, having a tight and emotional match. It was my 3rd mixed doubles final here at the US Open, and I wanted the CROWN big time!

I had lots of fun playing here again and I met many friends at the same time as well!! We say all good things come in threes, but in my case it has to be the 4th time :-) I know I’m capable to do that if it’s doubles or mixed doubles.

Thank you all for your support and being part of my 2012 US Open. It was great to share all this moments with you!!!

All the best,
Kveta

Kveta into Mixed Doubles Final at US Open

Kveta in action during the US Open tennis tournament at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, NY. Photo by Cynthia Lum.

Hey everyone and hello to days 9 and 10!

Rain, rain, rain and one more time rain…this has been my worst day at the US Open this year. It was raining really badly and we had to go on and off the court. This interrupts everybody’s rhythm. You don’t know when to eat or when to warm up. Everything is kind of hanging in the air.

Unfortunately, Julia and I lost our doubles quarterfinal match yesterday. Roberta Vinci and Sara Errani were the better and more consistent team! However, Julia and I had a wonderful time together. It was fun to work with her and her team here in NY. Thanks a lot to them!

In the evening we went to a wonderful Italian restaurant near our hotel on 54th Avenue West. My manager, Lyn, told us about it so we of course had to go! There we had not only a fabulous dinner but also the best service ever here in NY. Such a great place to go!!!

Day 10 was a good day…you see this life is almost like a roller-coaster of emotions :) We won our semifinal mixed match against Max Mirnyi and Liezel Huber. We played very well and I again have to thank my partner Marcin Matkowski for hanging in so tight. I have seen guys who lose early in doubles either pulling out of mixed or not trying 100 percent. Marcin is not like that; he is committed 100 percent! Thank you!

So tomorrow we have our final day after two long weeks here in NY. I really hope I can show you a photo with the trophy after the match…no pressure! ;)

But now it is time again to go to bed and to be ready for the final tomorrow!

Good night to you all…

Hugs,

Kveta

Continued success at US Open for Kveta Peschke

Kveta explores the city on her day off.

Hello everyone!

I had a nice day off today so had a little bit of fun in the city in the morning then an easy practice and massage on site after. Here is a fun photo from my day in the Big Apple and Central Park…no shopping bags though! ; )

Tomorrow I have two matches so after a good dinner I am planning to have an early night to prepare well!

I will send you more updates tomorrow : )

Kveta

Day 8

Hey! Here I am again and so happy about this day. All I could have wished for today came true. This is one of those days which should never end! :)

After having a really difficult season so far these wins are very important to me and keep me going. I am very thankful that my partner Julia Goerges played such a fantastic match today! It made things much easier! We were playing King/Shvedova, one of the best teams in the world, and were able to

Kveta (at right) talks tactics with her partner, Julia Georges, at the US Open.

win 6:4 6:2. The first set was really close and could have gone either way but we were a bit luckier in the important moment. In the second set we were rolling and Julia made some unbelievable points so we got an early lead and kept going till the end.

Mixed worked out well too! I lost the last two mixed matches against Sania Mirza and today I was able to finally win one again. We always have good matches against each other and she is a great player and a strong fighter but today it was my turn! :)

I just found out that I am playing tomorrow both doubles and mixed so I have to get something to eat now which is luckily not really difficult in New York.

Please keep your fingers crossed for my next matches, and of course I will let you know how things worked out.

So all the best to you and I get back to you tomorrow…Kveta

 

At the Open with Kveta Peshcke

Kveta (at right) is pictured here with her doubles partner Julia Goerges

Hello from NY!

I just got back from the courts after a successful day. My partner is Julia Goerges and we played well today. We beat Date Krumm/Wozniak 6-1 6-3, so it’s very promising for tomorrow! We play 2nd round at 11am against Voracova/Zakopalova.

Kveta gets her day started the right way, with some coffee!

Today I started the day with a coffee as usual for a good mood and then I always say “nothing can go wrong!” : )

By the way, our first win in mixed doubles yesterday with Marcin was lots of fun and great experience I can use in my doubles as well. We will probably play the 2nd round on Saturday.

Now I’m finally back relaxing in the hotel room with a healthy Caesar chicken salad for dinner. I have to be in the car at 7:45 a.m. and hit the road to the site again, so I have to keep it a bit shorter today!! Hope you like the photos! : )

Kveta arrives through the player's entrance at the US Open.

Have a good night!

Kveta

At the Open with Kveta Peschke

WTA Tour player, Kveta Peschke blogs from the US Open.

Kveta Peschke gets ready to rip a backhand in this file photo. Photo by TW Staff.

Hello everyone! I am very happy to have the chance to write to you here on the Tennis Warehouse website. I love Tennis Warehouse and it’s been great to work with them together this year so far. We decided it would be nice and fun to give some insights into what’s going on here at the last Grand Slam of the year in New York…last but not least!

Right now I am sitting on a couch in the player’s lounge waiting for my first round mixed doubles match. I’m excited to get the match started soon because the wait is getting long! I am playing with Marcin Matkowski here. He is a very good doubles player, ranked number 6, his best ranking so far. I have played with him once before in Australia…we hope to play even better this time. We are both doing better in doubles since that time! I speak a little Polish so I think we will have fun on court!

I prepared myself well for this tournament because it’s an important one so that’s why I spend a lot of time on site. It’s the last big one of the year and I have lots of special memories from here from the previous years. So that means not too much time for fun in NYC yet but last night we went to Rue 57, a French restaurant, for dinner with friends.

Looks like the match before me is nearly done so I am going to warm up. Wish me good luck! I will write more tomorrow hopefully with some good news and photos!

Bye bye!

Kveta

Andy’s 2012 Men’s US Open Preview

Will Roger win his record 18th major title at this year's US Open?

There’s little intro needed for this year’s US Open. On the men’s side, we’ve had three different Grand Slam winners to start the year for the first time since 2005. Can Andy Murray join the game’s elite as a Grand Slam champion? Will we see another unexpected run to the title like Juan Martin Del Potro in 2009? Can Novak Djokovic regain his form from last season? Will Roger Federer earn himself his 18th Grand Slam title and further strengthen his claim as the game’s best? All of these questions are going to be answered in the next couple weeks in the Big Apple. I hope you’re as excited as we are for the US Open to start!

With all these great storylines and great players gunning for the title, it’s easy to overlook the great action that’s going to start the tournament in the first couple rounds. True tennis fans say that some of the most exciting tennis to watch of the whole tournament is on the outside courts during the first week. Many tennis enthusiasts purchase a grounds pass for the early rounds instead of forking out the greenbacks for a premium seat on one of the stadium courts, where they see some lower ranked guys battle their hearts out for precious rankings points and prize money.  Let’s take a look at some early round matches to keep an eye on, as well as some predictions for the rest of the tournament…

1st Round Upset Special:

Nicolas Almagro (11) vs. Radek Stepanek: I like Almagro, especially because he’s consistently a tough competitor, week in and week out. However, I see this as a tricky matchup for the feisty Spaniard. Stepanek makes his living coming forward to the net and giving big hitters little rhythm, carving them up and chopping them down. Almagro‘s even been a victim in the past, as Stepanek has beaten him both times they’ve played. Grab the popcorn and watch this one, as Almagro will scratch and claw but ultimately will get frustrated by Radek’s aggressive play…Stepanek in 4.

1st Round To Watch:

Juan Martin Del Potro (7) vs. David Nalbandian: It’s an all-Argentine matchup between two great baseliners. Del Potro looks to be finding his form of late, earning himself a bronze medal at the Olympics after taking down Djokovic and pushing Roger to the brink in the semis. Nalbandian is always a threat on the hard courts, and is 3-1 all-time against Del Po. Look for some hard hitting action, with Del Potro coming out on top…Del Potro in 4.

Potential 2nd Round Matchups To Watch:

Mardy Fish has been streaky this year, but he's won at least 3 rounds at the US Open the last three times he's played.

Mardy Fish (23) vs. Nikolay Davydenko: This is just too intriguing of a matchup to pass up. Mardy usually plays well during the summer hard court season, but has been pretty average so far this year. Davydenko had two easy wins of Dolgopolov and Mayer (both top 25) last week in Cincinnati, but then retired to Djokovic after dropping the first set 6-0. This match is more about the unknown, about which Nikolay and Mardy we are going to see. I think this match goes the distance, and Mardy rides the wave of the New York crowd to victory…Fish in 5.

Can Alexandr Dolgopolov match his round of 16 appearance of 2011?

Alexandr Dolgopolov (14) vs. Marcos Baghdatis: I want to watch this one just for the personalities, as two of the most likable players on tour potentially face off (check out this funny glimpse into the life of Alexandr at the Australian Open). These are two of my favorite players on tour, both in their game styles and personalities. Dolgopolov won a title in Washington DC, but since then has had two bad first round losses in Toronto and Cincinnati. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of form both these guys are in…I say Dolgopolov in 3.

Dark Horse: John Isner (9)

Big John once again has turned in a solid performance during the US summer hard court season.  He’s 18-3 since his first round exit at Wimbledon, with three top 10 wins (Tipsarevic, Tsonga, and Berdych) and two titles in Newport and Winston-Salem.  I think he’s poised for a breakout at the Open, with a favorable draw and the New York crowd ready to support him the whole way.  A couple other interesting stats for the ex-Georgia Bulldog…he’s leading the tour in aces this year with over 750, and he’s 6-2 against the top 10 this year, including wins over Djokovic in Indian Wells and Federer in Davis Cup.  Look for Isner to make his way through his section, riding the wave of the American crowd into the semifinals.  

Big John is poised for a big run at the US Open

Finals Prediction: Roger Federer (1) vs. Juan Martin Del Potro (7)

I think it’s going to be a 2009 US Open final rematch! Roger is the best in the world and he’s going to continue to prove it. He’s got a great draw to get to the quarters, and then I think he takes down Murray in the semis in one of the best matches of the tournament. I think Del Potro gets hot and goes on a run. The Del Potro/Djokovic quarterfinal will be the match of the tournament, with Del Po prevailing in 5 sets, and then riding that wave of momentum to his second career Grand Slam final. Once they both get there, I’m going to say…Roger in 4!

Thanks for reading!

AG