So, this has been some first week so far at the Open, huh? Among all the different storylines and results, to me there are a few that just really stood out. And me being the sharing type, I'll let you in on them!
• Agony in defeat: Man, my heart really goes out to the Serbian sledgehammers, Jelena Jankovic and Ana Ivanovic. Jankovic played today's match with a heavy heart as her grandmother just died last night. Talk about rough circumstances to compete in! But I don't want to take away from Yaroslava Shvedova, who was playing high-quality tennis. Still, Jankovic had multiple chances to possibly win but didn't come through. Tough loss.
Then there's Ivanovic: I don't know what's going on there. I do know it's a sad sight to see. During her match, I was flipping back and forth to "Andre Agassi: Between the Lines" on The Tennis Channel. After her loss, I thought of what I had just watched in the show, the legendary story of Agassi going back and playing those Challengers at the end of 1997 to gain confidence. I'm not saying she should hit the ITF circuit, but there has to be some smaller tournaments she could play in and work on her game.
• Could he care any less?: Marat Safin, playing the last Major of his career, lost in the first round to Jurgen Melzer. Now, I actually gave up on Safin last year just because of his disregard for the game and his place in it. And in a way, I think he disses his fans by not putting forth more of an effort. Would it have killed him to maybe stick around the court for a second or two to soak in the applause the New York fans gave him? And I know this may sound harsh, but I hope he just decides to go ahead and call it a day. What's the fun in watching a supreme talent lose to journeymen? He doesn't care, so why should I?
• Sweet 17: What can you say about Melanie Oudin that hasn't been already? Wow! To knock off Elena Dementieva like she did was impressive. I can't remember the last time a young American came out with these types of results she's had the past few months.
Like I said, there's been tons of other things going on, these just caught my eye the most. I'm sure there'll be plenty more tales in the days ahead!
An old friend of mine and I used to talk tennis for hours, whether it was our own games or what was happening in the pros. I've started Tennis Talk, Anyone? to, well, talk tennis with an even broader crowd! My name is Van Sias and I've been playing for 20 years now, and not only am I player, I'm a huge fan of the game as well: pro, amateur, you name it. I'll post links to news items related to the sport, and offer my own personal opinion, predictions and hopefully get some of yours as well.