Really colorful adidas outfits for the Australian Open. I like Pennetta‘s and Ivanovic‘s but Henin‘s outfit is UGLY!

Flavia Pennetta

Ana Ivanovic

Justine Henin

As expected (read our Fed Cup final preview here), Italy successfully defended its Fed Cup title on Sunday by beating USA 3-1.
The only surprise of the week end was Mary Joe Fernandez decision to choose Coco Vandeweghe over Melanie Oudin to play singles on Saturday. A pretty bad coaching decision as Vandeweghe looked like a fish out of the water and lost her 2 matches against Schiavone and Pennetta in straight sets.
It is Italy’s third Fed Cup trophy in five years. Congrats to Francesca Schiavone, Flavia Pennetta, Roberta Vinci and Sara Errani.

The women’s season is definitely over: Ana Ivanovic captured the last tournament of the year in Bali. And she’s finally back in the top 20.
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2010 Fed Cup final preview

Italy and USA will meet in San Diego this week end for a rematch of last year’s Fed Cup final, won by Pennetta and co 4-0 in Reggio Calabria.
Even though USA lead their head-to-head 9 to 1, italian players are the big favorites in the absence of Serena and Venus Williams. All 4 members of the italian team (Francesca Schiavone, Flavia Pennetta, Roberta Vinci and Sara Errani) are better ranked than the best US player: Bethanie Mattek-Sands.
Hard courts are obviously not Francesca’s and Flavia’s best surface, but they will be both boosted by their recent good results: Schiavone qualified for the first time for the WTA championships whereas Pennetta captured the doubles WTA Championships with partner Gisela Dulko last week.
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A: Andy Murray
After his semi at Wimbledon and his impressive win in Montreal, Andy Murray seemed ready to win his elusive maiden Grand Slam. Ousted by big server Marin Cilic in the fourth round, Murray has perhaps finally learned that to win a major one must act more than react.

B: Bernard Tomic
Australia’s hottest tennis prospect won his second junior GS title, defeating Chase Buchanan in finals. At just 15 years and three months, Tomic became the youngest junior GS winner in history in Melbourne in 2008. He has now decided to shift his focus on his professional ranking.
Do you think he will emulate Andy Roddick, winner in juniors in 2000 and in seniors in 2003?

C: Caroline Wozniacki

Caroline Wozniacki, 2009 US Open

First major final for the 19yr old Dane, who had to face only one seed to reach the final: in the fourth round against reigning French Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, Wozniacki rallied a break down in the third set to win 2–6, 7–6(5), 7–6(3). But she couldn’t put an end to Clijsters’ fairytale comeback.

D: Djokovic Novak
In his semi against Federer, he never acted like he could win. He tried to revamp his image following his 08 US Open faux-pas but it’s perhaps time for him to revamp his game.

E: Esther Vergeer
Forget Sampras, Federer and Lendl, Esther Vergeer is the most dominant player ever, and you probably never heard of her.
Unbeaten since January 2003, the 28 yr old wheelchair tennis player won her 8th US Open title, her 139th singles titles.

F: Flavia Pennetta
The 27 yr old italian had a terrific summer with wins in Palermo on clay, in Los Angeles on hard court, and an entry in the top 10 ranking. Flavia lost only 6 games in her first three rounds at the US Open but saved six match points against Zvonareva to reach the quarter finals, where Serena defeated her in straight sets.

G: Gonzalez Fernando

Fernando Gonzalez, 2009 US Open

The hard hiting Chilean made it through to the quarter finals for the second time of his career, beating 7th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the fourth round. He then played two close sets to Rafael Nadal, before falling in 3 sets in an empty Arthur Ashe stadium.

H: Henin Justine
“I do think that [Henin] is planning something” Clijsters said. “She’s always been very competitive as well, and the way she ended her career still seems strange to me. I do think that she will come back.”
She was right indeed. Two weeks after Clijsters’ triumph at Flushing, Henin announced her comeback.

I: Isner John
Isner, the giant turned giant killer was the last American standing in the men’s singles draw at the U.S. Open. The Georgia University graduate stuned Roddick in the thid round in a five set thriller: 7-6(3), 6-3, 3-6, 5-7, 7-6(5). He then bowed out to Spain’s Verdasco in four sets in the next round.

J: Juan Martin Del Potro

Juan Martin Del Potro, 2009 US Open

Juan Martin Del Potro ended Federer’s five year unbeaten streak at the US Open to win his first Grand Slam title.
“I had two dreams this week” said Del Potro during the trophy ceremony: “One was to win the US Open and the other is to be like Roger”. “One is done, but I need to improve a lot to be like you”.
With a monster forehand and a consistent backhand, the Argentine possesses all the weapons to become the next number one.

K: Kim Clijsters

Kim Clijsters, 2009 US Open

“I am looking at this as a second career, not as a comeback, as I am now in a situation where not everything revolves around tennis 24h a day.”
In only her third tournament since her come back, she won her second US Open title, becoming the first mom to win a major since Evonne Goolagong in 1980.

L: a little LOVE for Safina?
Dismissed by her peers and the media for her Grand Slam collapses, Dinara Safina was furious at the organisers for shifting her 3rd round match from Arthur Ashe to Louis Armstrong stadium. But no matter the stadium, a loss is still a loss: she was defeated by Petra Kvitova, ranked 72.

M: Marin Cilic
Marin Cilic scored the biggest upset of US Open 2009, defeating Andy Murray in the fourth round 7-5 6-2 6-2. Despite a set and a break up, he lost against eventual winner Juan Martin Del Potro in quarter finals.

Francesca Schiavone is without a doubt the most surprising but also one of the most deserving Grand Slam winner. After a 12 year carrer, she conquered Roland Garros but also the italian hearts.

Francesca Schiavone

Francesca Schiavone

Francesca Schiavone

Francesca Schiavone

Her historical made the headlines in Italy. There was a 4-page report in La Gazzetta Sportiva on Sunday, with stories about her childhood, interviews of Francesca’s parents but also of Nicola Pietrangeli and Adriano Panatta both former Roland Garros winner (1959 and 1960 for Pietrangeli, 1976 for Panatta).

La Gazzetta Sportiva - Francesca Schiavone

La Gazzetta dello Sport - Francesca Schiavone

Her improbable and incredible run also inspired Marcello Lippi, Italy’s football national coach: “I want 11 Schiavone [for the World Cup]”

lippi