Monday, August 27, 2018

US Open 2018 Begins Today!

I cannot believe the US Open starts today! Summer is officially winding down. I attended the tournament for many, many years with the last time being in 2011. I don't follow the sport as much as I did, but many of my favorites like Rafael Nadal and Maria Sharapova are still top players today. I always want to get back to see the changes to the tennis center, but haven't made it yet. Here are some of my shots of the players taken at the tournament.  
Rafael Nadal is the number 1 men's player on the tour. He currently holds 17 grand slam titles. He can win on any surface and is one of my faves to watch!  
Maria Sharapova is someone I have been watching since she started on the tour. She is currently ranked 21 in the world, and has 5 grand slam titles on all surfaces as well as one of the top female earners in prize money at around 38 million dollars. This was a great shot of her, and I do miss photographing the players. Watching live tennis is also very cool and is nothing compared to watching on television.  
Victoria Azerenka is a former Number 1 player in the world with 2 grand slam titles under her belt. She is currently ranked 80 in the world.  
Serena Williams, many who say is the greatest player of all time, with 23 grand slam singles titles which is the 2nd all time to Margaret Court from Australia.  
The ground are really beautiful and they have expanded it many times to accommodate for the throngs of fans from around the world that attend each year.  
I love watching the matches at night as the weather cools down, and it is less crowded than during the day. One of these days, I will be back to check out the grounds and matches! 
One of my favorite photos I took of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal at Arthur Ashe Kids Day. I was working for a friend's tennis website and actually sitting in the photographers pit at Arthur Ashe Stadium. It was something I will never forget.  

The tournament runs for 2 weeks and it is best to get your ticket ahead of time as sessions do sell out. The first week is the best time to go as you have lots of matches going on and can see some great players in action. I prefer the smaller courts to the big stadium, I like being closer to the action.

From the US Open website:

Arthur Ashe wins the first ever US Open men's singles crown, defeating Tom Okker of the Netherlands, 14-12, 5-7, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, in the final. Because of his amateur status, the 25-year-old Ashe, a lieutenant in the U.S. Army, was ineligible to receive the $14,000 first prize in the $100,000 event-at the time the richest tournament in tennis history. Instead, Ashe collects only his $20 per diem. Ashe is the first American to win the U.S. men's singles title since 1955 and the first-ever African-American to win a men's singles title at a Grand Slam Championship. The New York Times calls Ashe's victory "the most notable achievement made in the sport by a Negro male athlete." Virginia Wade of Great Britain upsets top-seeded Billie Jean King for the women's title and collects a check of $6,000.

The richest prize purse in the history of tennis is set to get even bigger with the announcement that prize money at the 2018 US Open will reach a record $53 million.

Happy 50th birthday to the US Open in 2018 !!!

US Open 
Flushing Meadows
Corona Park
Queens New York

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