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Around the Grounds: Day 3 at the 2017 US Open

Robert Cole/ALOST
Because of the washout yesterday, a few former Grand Slam finalists will be playing on Court 5, including 2012 Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska. (Photo by Robert Cole)
Because of the near-complete washout yesterday, a few former Grand Slam finalists will be playing on the outside court of Court 5 at the US Open today, including 2012 Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska. (Robert Cole/ALOST)

Sometimes, you have to take the bad news with the good, and yesterday at the US Open was just that.

The bad news was that only nine of the 64 singles matches that were scheduled for yesterday were completed, with the rain wreaking havoc on proceedings at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. The good news, however, was that the matches that were completed under the roof of Arthur Ashe Stadium provided a while lot of intrigue, a historic upset and a near-miss at an upset for the ages. The completed upset of note came when Japan’s Naomi Osaka defeated the defending US Open champion, Angelique Kerber, and did so while holding the German to just four games won (6-3, 6-1). A few hours, and, officially, one day later, Roger Federer needed to go into Wednesday morning to finally shake off American Frances Tiafoe, winning 6-4 in the final set. We are still walking around with an afterglow from that match…

…but we’re also walking around like a zombie, as we now, after leaving the tennis grounds well after midnight the first two nights, have to cover more than 80 matches today!! Because of that backlog, a number of matches have had to be rescheduled, and some name players are playing on courts that their standing wouldn’t have normally have put them in. Just take Court 5 for example, where 2010 finalist Tomas Berdych, 2012 Wimbledon finalist Aga Radwanska and 2017 Wimbledon semifinalist Sam Querrey are all scheduled to play on the meat of the Courts 4-5-6 sandwich adjacent to the practice courts. We will spend a number of time on that court and, as always, will walk around all over the grounds to have all of Day 3 covered!

Remember, everyone, the “refresh” button is your friend! We’ll be updating you constantly on different matches and storylines…as always! Again, the most recent blogs are on top.

9:46 PM EST: Coric upsets Sascha! Oh mein Gott! (Oh my God, in German)

9:42 PM EST: In the media room now with my German friend, and we’re watching the fourth-set tiebreak between Sascha Zverev and Borna Coric, and it’s now 5-3 Coric…now 5-4 Coric. Coric can serve out the match. I’m learning a little more German in the process from my friend. Seriously.

9:34 PM EST: Still on Court 4, where matches would usually be over by this time, but, because of all of the rainouts, there’s more tennis on the outer courts! It’s Ekaterina Alexandrova and No. 18 Caroline Garcia who are warming up right now. I’ll go back into media room for just a second (I promise, just a second), then we’ll be back out!

9:33 PM EST: Here is the funny story: As the German reporter and I click to see the Paire-Zverev goings on, we both talk about Paire is very unpredictable. At 5-5, 30-30, we tuned in to the match. Then Paire serves a double fault. We laugh. The German reporter then says, “He will double fault here again on break point.”
Paire double faults again. We laugh hysterically! I did hear a reporter puff his cheeks because we were disturbing him with our laughter, but we couldn’t help but bust a seam at my (new) friend’s clairvoyance!

9:30 PM EST: Here is the funny story: As the German reporter and I click to see the Paire-Zverev goings on, we both talk about Paire is very unpredictable. At 5-5, 30-30, we tuned in to the match. Then Paire serves a double fault. We laugh. The German reporter then says, “He will double fault here again on break point.”
Paire double faults again. We laugh hysterically! I did hear a reporter puff his cheeks because we were disturbing him with our laughter, but we couldn’t help but bust a seam at my (new) friend’s clairvoyance!

9:28 PM EST: Paire dumps a forehand into the net and Zverev wins! After winning first two sets, Zverev holds on in five:
6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-7, 7-5!

9:26 PM EST: Have a real funny story to tell you that involves German reporter soon. But we’re here on Court 4 to see in Zverev can close it out. He’s at 40-15, Zverev is. Keeping ball to Paire’s funky forehand and it’s paying dividends.

9:18 PM EST: I’m sitting next to a German reporter, who is intently watching the Alexander Zverev trying to fight back in the fourth set against Borna Coric. And now, we’re seeing that Mischa Zzerev is tied at 5-5 in the fifth set with Benoit Paire.

9:16 PM EST: Kenin was there in the press conference room along with her dad/coach, Alexander, who move Sofia and the family to Brooklyn from Moscow (Russia, not Idaho) when Sofia was just over three years old.

7:50 PM EST: Apologies for the delay, but, I just saw the match of the tournament – without my computer in tow, of course!
Neither of the players were seeded, but the drama was that of a major final…but on Court 10. THat is where Americans Sachia Vickery and Sofia Kenin slugged it out for two hours and 38 minutes, with Kenin saving three match points to win the match, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (0). There were swinging volley winners and errors from Vickery, including one where she had match point. We had a player getting mad at a foot fault being called on her (Vickery) and a warning for player-box coaching (Kenin). We had racquets nearly being thrown in anger and disagreements with chair umpires. Oh, and that was just in the third set! We will talk with Kenin afterward!

5:29 PM EST: Rogers was hilarious, and that doesn’t even account for her metallic Diadora jacket that she had on in the press conference room.

5:05 PM EST: Ho hum, ho hum. Maria Sharapova is on Ashe now. No big deal, right? Wrong! Big deal! She’s facing Times Babos of Hungary and, at the moment, we’re in a tiebreak. Sharapova just broke at 5-6 after Babos broke at 5-5. Will be out at Ashe shortly, after Andrew and I hear from Shelby Rogers in the media room.

4:03 PM EST: We are out onto the courts! And as I get onto Court 6, it’s match point. And an error from Day clinches the win for Rogers, whom I wouldn’t be surprised if she made a little run here in Queens. She is more of a clay court player, given her successes in Charleston, but you never know what playing in your “home” slam can do for you.

3:59 PM EST: Whee! Our other interview is ready to go! Here is 2010 Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych, as he talks about playing on Court 5, as well as his opinion of his career as a professional tennis player so far.

3:58 PM EST: Our other on-camera interview is close to being published on here, but, we are noticing that two Americans, Shelby Rogers and Kayla Day, are in a tight three-set battle. Day leads 4-3 in the third and they’re on-serve on the nearest court to us in the media room: Court 6. So, why don’t we do there, shall we?!

3:30 PM EST: Close to getting out onto the courts, and we’ve already seen on the TV monitors here in the media room that Nick Kyrgios, who has had a good summer, lost to fellow Aussie John Millman in four sets. That’s so disappointing, as Nick, for all of his talent, might never reach his full potential. Can you see him putting it together for four, five, six matches in a row and make a Grand Slam final? He should, with his talent. But mentally, it will always be a challenge for him.

2:03 PM EST: We also interviewed, on camera, a former Grand Slam singles finalist. First, though, here’s our one-question interview with WTA No. 4 Elina Svitolina of the Ukraine, whose birthday comes just two days after the US Open women’s final. So, I had to ask her the tough question! She actually said that, after I asked the question, it was a tough question. Here it is…

1:50 PM EST: We are off to a late start, as we got to the grounds just past 12:30 PM (coming from Bed-Stuy to Flushing is a 90-minute commute on the subway at best). But we are going to hit the ground running, as we’ll have for you an interview with a top five player! Who is it? We’ll you’ll find out!

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