Google Down the Line!: 2007-09-30

Friday, October 5, 2007

SIGHTING: Anna Kournikova in Miami Beach, shows off for Enrique

Anna Kournikova has been spending most of her time in Miami Beach these days with boy-piece Enrique Iglesias. The last time we spotted the Russian glamour girl, she wasn't looking so hot. She was clearly hiding the good stuff under that unfortunate bubble dress - here she's looking fit, healthy, and in very good spirits.

Who wouldn't be when you have a hottie like Enrique to play with?


FASHION FIX: Lacoste's up n' down year and Tatiana's tangerine dream

We think Frenchie fashion label Lacoste has been very hit-or-miss this year. The hits? The men's tennis gear, most recently with Fabrice Santoro's super cute candy-striped polo matched with white shorts for the US Open. The misses? The women's on-court fashion with the latest being Tatiana Golovin's "tangerine dream" for this week's Porshce Tennis Grand Prix - or dare we say nightmare?

Of course, we must put a fair amount of the blame on the players themselves. Tati just went overboard wearing the same orange color for both the top and skirt, similar to Marat Safin and his adidas "haz-mat" outfit.

We keep saying it but the tours could use a full-time stylist - any takers?

Thursday, October 4, 2007

THE LOW DOWN: Stefan Koubek uses foul language, gets booted from Open de Moselle

Stefan Koubek was booted from the Open de Moselle today for some apparently inappropriate comments he made to tournament supervisor Thomas Karlberg during his match against Frenchie Sebastien Grosjean.

According to Karlberg, "On the first point of the seventh game, on Grosjean's serve, a Koubek forehand close to the baseline gave a 0-15 advantage to Koubek," [...] "But the umpire realized Grosjean was in the way of the line judge, who was therefore unable to judge the point. In this case, the rule is to replay the point. Koubek disagreed and asked for the supervisor's intervention. He did not want to accept the rules and used strong language. I told him the match was over and asked the umpire to announce it."

Stefan is not a first-time offender, however. He was disqualified from the French Open in 2000 and from the qualies of the Paris Open in '03. He follows fellow dis-qualie Anastasia Rodionova who was bounced from her match earlier this year for hitting a tennis ball towards some fans.


FASHION FIX: The latest looks of Serena Williams

We were quite understandably horrified when we came across this photo of Serena "ReRe" Williams at a press conference for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix this week. The normally stylish ReRe looked like she's had many a sleepless night recently...or someone stole her mirror. We even noticed some other fashion faux pas from her look this least she's consistent, we suppose.

In any case, we'd prefer to remember some of our fave looks from the 8-time Grand Slam champ that she's given us lately. C'mon ReRe, get yourself together!

(images courtesy of AP Photo, Getty)

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

+ WEDNESDAY NETCORDS: Rafa, Andy, Pete vs. Roger...ATP gets dumped, Serbia's rise and more

(image courtesy of Jezzer Johnson)

- The Tennis Channel pulls another coup by securing the rights to feature the 3 exhibition matches between living legends Pete Sampras and Roger Federer. The matches scheduled to air are the meetings in Seoul, Korea . Up next is the Nov. 22 match in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, then the Nov. 23 meeting in Macao, China.

- Tennis Diary states their case for why Rafael Nadal has yet to play well at the US Open. Our guess: he's worn his body to shreads by the Open - period.

- Mercedes will be ending its 11-year sponsorship of the ATP tour to broaden its portfolio to include golf, football, and get this, equestrian activities. Tennis, you're losing out to horses - get a grip.

- Talking Federer: Talk show host Charlie Rose discusses all things Roger Federer with commentary by Rod Laver, John McEnroe, Jim Courier, Rafael Nadal, Bud Collins, and of course Fed himself. Good stuff.

- Prince is entering the gaming world by producing Wii Tennis racquets

- An Olympic gold medal vs. a Grand Slam championship: the players weigh in

- Andy Roddick launched the Andy Roddick Youth Tennis program this week. About 60 students
receive two hours of tennis instruction and one hour of the "Living Smart/Living Strong" Development and Guidance Program, led by OLLU Education faculty. Learn more about the program by visiting

- Peter Bodo asks: how DID Serbia become a tennis superpower?

FASHION FIX: Serena Williams resurfaces at Porsche Grand Prix, rocks HP dress

Serena "ReRe" Williams is playing at the Porsche Grand Prix this week, her first tournament since her US Open loss to Justine Henin (and her sour grapes moment). ReRe has opted for an alternate version of the Nike dress she wore at the Open; this pink dress with burgundy stripe is featured in her recent TV ad for HP computers, also.

We still like the black + pink version much better. But what we can't get past is the rock she's sporting on her hand, not to mention the chipped fingernail polish. What's the deal ReRe?

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The players get their party on at the Japan Open

Players party: A few of the notable men and women from the tennis tours took time out from the Japan Open this week to get their party on. Those in attendance included Ai Sugiyama, Venus Williams, Tomas Berdych, Richard Gasquet, David Ferrer, Sania Mirza, and Lleyton Hewitt.

Call us crazy but this doesn't look like much of a party. And, aren't they missing part of their kimono?

PREVIEW: The Aussie Open unveils new surface, goes "true blue" for tennis

The 2007 tennis season is not even finished and we're already getting a preview of 2008. Today the Australian Open revealed major changes for the first Grand Slam of the year. The officials unveiled the new court surface - "Australian True Blue" plexicushion - which replaces the Rebound Ace that has graced the courts but tortured many an ankle for the last 20 years. Plexicushion combines a special blend of latex, rubber and plastic particles, forms a resilient layer that absorbs body shock and reduces muscle fatigue. The 100% acrylic Plexipave Surface provides consistent and uniform bounce, long lasting color, and allows speed of play specification. The result is a sure-footed surface that dynamically responds to body impact and reduces fatigue on player's legs ankles and feet.

Tournament Director Craig Tiley had this to say about the latest incarnation of the Aussie Open surface:

"The initial player responses, from Roger Federer down, have been positive," [...] "The choice of plexicushion is about ensuring consistency in pace and bounce across all of our courts," [...] "The new colour is fresh and ensures greater visibility for players, officials, spectators and television viewers alike."

Additional changes for the 2008 season include a tweaking of the ochre-coloured "servingman" tournament logo; a renewed push into Asia in a big way with official clothing soon to hit the vast market of China, and a big screen with live telecasts of the tournament set up in Shanghai to go alongside those in Melbourne and Sydney; and a 7% increase in prize money to $1.23 million to each singles champion.

To learn more about Plexicusion, click here.


Monday, October 1, 2007

SEPARATED AT BIRTH: B. Becker vs. N. Kiefer

We think Thailand Open finalist Benjamin Becker, whose greatest claim to fame is defeating Andre Agassi in the final match of his career, is a dead ringer for Germany's Nicolas Kiefer. Conspiracy or coincidence?

Venus Williams wins Korean Open, dines on cow tongue

Venus Williams made a return to the winner's circle this week at the Korean Open. Playing for the first time since her semifinal US Open loss to eventual champ Justine Henin, V played sketchy tennis at stretches to defeat Russian Maria Kirilenko 6-3, 1-6, 6-4. The finalists donned traditional Korean clothing for the presentation ceremony.

Here's what V had to say in her blog about the dress:

"I really love the dress they gave me after the final in Seoul. I was thinking about when I'd have another chance to wear it - but I don't know if I can even get it back on! The reality is probably I can't wear it again, but it was mine to keep, so I have it with me. They fitted it for me too, which was great, but with that in mind, I don't know if any other woman can wear it!"

The World No. 8 celebrated the win with some late night karaoke and a dinner that included cow tongue:

"I'd have to say the highlight of my week was the final; it was just a great final, so intense - but the most interesting part was probably getting coerced into eating tongue at this Korean barbecue last night. I almost lost it - twice. Don't get me wrong, I loved the food all week, and I ate lots. But the restaurant owner brought us some delicacies and of course, there was cow tongue. He told me to dip it in the sauce, which was vinegar, and I really don't like vinegar at all. It was just miserable! But I made it through."


FASHION FIX: Sania Mirza goes white + red for Japan Open

India's superstar Sania Mirza is playing in the Japan Open this week and sits as the No. 2 seed. Clothing sponsor Lotto has hooked Sania up with a striking red number for the tournament (with our fave flirty skirt.) We've always admired her understated style, particulary this summer's white + green gear. Clearly she's having a white + red moment having worn the same color combo while previewing the winner's trophy at the Sunfeast Open.

Sania moved into the second round by defeating Japan's Ayumi Morita 6-0, 6-4.

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