The last Grand Slam of the year started a bit strangely. Two events strongly influenced him.
The first is the non-participation of one of the best tennis players in the world, Novak Djokovic. The Americans did not let the Serb into the tournament because he is not vaccinated against covid-19. It damaged the tournament sportingly.
Let’s dwell more on the participation of the retiring tennis superstar Serena Williams and the circus that has developed around it. The American tennis player arouses emotions, only this time there were a little more than was healthy. “Fortunately”: Serena has already been eliminated.
At first it looked like she wasn’t going to play at all, then she actually showed up at the tournament and a frenzy broke out. When she defeated the second-seeded Estonian Anett Kontaveit in the second round, some experts immediately began to speculate whether this would be another winning campaign to the title.
It wasn’t. Serena first lost in the first round of doubles with her sister Venus to the Czech pair Lucie Hradecká and Linda Nosková. And in the third round of the women’s singles, Australian Ajla Tomljanovičová won in three sets.
First of all, I’m terribly sorry. I love Serena as much as you viewers, I watched her as a little girl…
The match had a special atmosphere and was far from fair play. The audience roared at the opponents’ mistakes. Serena Williams could have walked away like a queen if she had stopped the roar with a raised hand and said, “Thanks for cheering for me, but I want respect for my opponents.” The audience would have listened. But she didn’t, she just focused on herself. After all, that’s how she always did it.
I’m sorry I beat you
In that atmosphere, her opponents did not have it easy, when it came to completely absurd situations. Imagine that Czech basketball players used to beat the Serbian favorites in Prague on Sunday, and then the players went to the sad Serbian stars and apologized to them for beating them. Impossible? That’s exactly what happened in Flushing Meadows. The winning tennis players apologized to Serena and the audience for winning over her.
“First of all, I’m terribly sorry. I love Serena as much as you, the audience, I watched her as a little girl…,” started Ajla Tomljanovičová after winning the match.
The surprising thing is that no one was surprised or protested. Can you imagine the roaring audience in Finland or anywhere else abroad when Barbora Špotáková throws?
And so Serena Williams, the 23-time Grand Slam champion who became a role model for millions of black athletes but was a somewhat talked-about and not very likable star for some, left the way she did. The US Open could finally focus on tennis, on sports.
Kyrgios subtracted and added
In the men’s singles, Australian Nick Kyrgios continues the great campaign he started at Wimbledon. At Wimbledon, he only lost in the final in four sets to Novak Djokovic. At the US Open, he defeated the biggest favorite, defending champion and seeded number one Russian Daniil Medvedev in the fourth round, and is going to the quarterfinals. He’s never been this far at Flushing Meadows before, and at 27, he’s having the best year of his career. Let us remind you that at the beginning of the year at the Australian Open, he also won the doubles.
Why is it? Maybe by toning down the provocations a little – just a little really, don’t worry Kyrgios will remain Kyrgios. But at the same time he added to concentration and tennis skills.
The Italian Matteo Berrettini, Norwegian Casper Ruud, Spanish Carlos Alcaraz, and also his compatriot Rafael Nadal confirm the good form from the previous months. In the women’s category, the Pole Iga Swiateková started again, and the Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia and the American Coco Gauff made their way to the semifinals.
Applause to the Czechs as well, whether it’s the proven duo Barbora Krejčíková – Kateřina Siniaková in the doubles, or Karolína Plíšková and Petra Kvitová, who are already in the quarterfinals. But both will not have it easy at all. Viktoria Azarenkova of Belarus is waiting for Plíšková, and Kvitová is American Jessica Pegulaová, who was already in the quarterfinals in Melbourne and Paris this year.