Tag Archives: Roger Federer

Jack & Jack, Why Don’t We, & Alex Aiono & More Headline Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day at the US Open

The 2017 US Open started with a bang on Saturday at the annual Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day Celebration.  AAKD is a celebration of music and tennis, in honor of the late tennis legend Arthur Ashe.  Proceeds from the event benefit the USTA Foundation and the National Junior Tennis & Learning Network (NJTL).  We love coming to this event every year because they have a knack for booking the hottest up and coming artists in music before they hit it big!  (Shawn Mendes, Justin Bieber, Backstreet Boys, Demi Lovato, Britney Spears are just a few of AAKD’s past performers!)


This year’s Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day also served as the official launch of Net Generation, the USTA’s new program to help inspire the next generation of tennis players.  Net Generation provides a fun, kid-friendly format to help younger players get into the game.  The next generation of American players including Frances Tiafoe, Claire Liu, Cici Bellis, & Jarden Donaldson, helped show off just how easy it can be!


Saving Forever, made up of 3 brothers from Chicago, got the stadium show started by rocking the house with their new single “Million Ways.”  Their high-energy performance featured dozens of dancers on court on Arthur Ashe Stadium getting down to their blend of perfect pop-rock sounds that just make you wanna dance!  Watch our interview with Saving Forever here!


New Hope Club, fresh off their Summer tour with Sabrina Carpenter, played their new single “Start Over” along with their hit “Fixed.”   The guys were thrilled to be playing their first ever stadium show!


What makes AAKD so fun is that it’s all about music AND tennis!   This year featured tennis icons Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Venus Williams & 2016 US Open Champion Angelique Kerber.  The players competed in a skills competition to see how many targets they could hit on the forehand and backhand side, with each target hit raising money for their individual charity.  One lucky participant from the NJTL also got to join the players on court and he had SKILLS – he hit almost as many targets as Roger Federer!


Sofia Carson, who co-hosted the event with Alex Aiono, took to the stage to perform her brand new single “Ins and Outs” for the first time.  Sofia’s powerful voice carried throughout the stadium and brought down the house!


One fun fact we learned this week is that pop duo Jack & Jack used to play doubles together in high school!  We’re sure they had a major fangirl moment when they realized they would get to perform on court on the legendary Arthur Ashe Stadium!  We love that their performance took place on opposite sides of the net, as if they were playing a match.  We wish we could have seen them put their tennis skills to the test!  Watch our interview with Jack & Jack here!


The screaming and excitement in the stadium for boyband Why Don’t We started the moment the boys hit the red carpet before the show even started.  It hit an all-time high during their performance of “Something Different” and “Taking You.”  Fans throughout the 23,000 capacity stadium were loudly singing along to every word and cheering as loud as possible.   We imagine this was what it was like at AAKD in 1998 when the Backstreet Boys performed!


As we said, AAKD always have a knack for booking future stars.  Judging by the crowd’s reaction, look out for much more from Why Don’t We soon!  We wouldn’t be surprised to see them headlining their own stadium tour one day.  The boys took the time to answer fan questions and assured that they are hard at work on their upcoming album!  Watch our interview with Why Don’t We here!


Co-host Alex Aiono brought down the house to wrap up the show.  He gave everyone a sneak peak at his brand new single, “Falling,” which is coming out on September 15th!   The multi-talented Alex played the guitar during “Falling” before launching  into his hit single “Hot 2 Touch,”  getting everyone in the stadium to dance along.  As his co-host Sofia pointed out, Alex had actually performed on the grounds on the festival stage back in 2012!  We loved seeing Alex graduate to the main stage!   Watch our interview with Alex Aiono here!

This year’s AAKD was a blast from start to finish, with one of the strongest lineups we’ve ever seen.  We’re already counting down to AAKD 2018!   But for now, we’ll enjoy being at the US Open for the next two weeks.


Make sure to check out our interviews from Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day with Alex Aiono, Jack & Jack, Why Don’t We, Saving Forever & Spencer Sutherland!  Head over to Secret Fangirls on YouTube to watch them all!


Be sure to follow AAKD & Secret Fangirls for more updates!

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Tennis Tuesday: News Roundup

This Week’s Tournaments:
BB&T Atlanta Open – Atlanta, GA, USA
Swiss Open Gstaad – Gstaad, Switzerland
German Tennis Championships – Hamburg, Germany

Last Week’s Winners:
Tennis Hall of Fame Championships – John Isner
SkiStar Swedish Open – David Ferrer
Plava Laguna Croatia Open – Andrey Rublev

Andy Roddick, Kim Clijsters Inducted Into Tennis Hall of Fame
Andy Roddick was inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame over the weekend in Newport, Rhode Island along with Kim Clijsters, Steve Flink, and Vic Braden.  As expected, Andy’s induction speech was equal parts poignant, charming, reflective, and funny, and reminded  us why we fell in love with tennis in the first place (and how much we miss Andy on tour!)   We loved Andy’s stories about how much he loved tennis from a young age and what a fan he was of all the players that came before him.  We’ll always be grateful to our tennis hero, Andy Roddick!  Watch Andy’s full speech below and have some tissues ready.

Jack Sock Goes Esquire
The latest issue of Esquire features a story on Jack Sock.  He mentions looking up to newly minted Hall of Famer, Andy Roddick.  “Sock grew up a Roddick fan (“being from Nebraska, it was hard not to be, plus I liked the Reebok Pumps and visor and the Backstreet Boys frosted tips”)”  We think Jack should bring this look back.  Check out the story here!

US Open Series Is Underway!
It’s hard to believe that the US Open starts in just over a month.  The US Open Series kicked off yesterday in Atlanta, with several tournaments coming up throughout the US & Canada leading up to the last slam of the year at the end of August.  Lots of young American players are in action in Atlanta this week.

Andrey Rublev Wins First Title in Croatia
19-year-old Russian Andrey Rublev won his first title over the weekend in Croatia.  Rublev entered the tournament as a lucky loser, having lost in the last round of qualifying, and played his way to the title.  Don’t forget that Rublev used to be in a One Direction cover band, Summer Afternoon.

Roger Federer Joins Arthur Ashe Kids Day Lineup
Big news!  Roger Federer will be joining the stadium show at Arthur Ashe Kids Day this year.  The show, on August 26th, will feature some of your favorite players along with performances by Sofia Carson, New Hope Club, Alex Aiono and more.   Tickets are on sale now!  Get all the details here.

Tennis Tuesday: News Roundup

This Week’s Tournaments:
Millennium Estoril Open – Estoril, Portugal
BMW Open – Munich, Germany
TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open – Istanbul, Turkey

Last Week’s Winners:
Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell – Rafael Nadal
Gazprom Hungarian Open – Lucas Pouille

Rafael Nadal Wins “La Decima” in Barcelona
Welcome to Rafa’s house!   Literally.  Just days after the center court at the Barcelona Open was renamed “Court Rafa Nadal,” Rafa won his 10th title at the tournament.   He defeated Dominic Thiem, one of the best clay court players of the younger generation, in an entertaining final, 6-4, 6-1.   Rafa celebrated by jumping in the pool at the club after his victory.   10 in Monte Carlo…10 in Barcelona…can he make it 10 at Roland Garros?  Vamos!

Celebrando una de las tradiciones del #Godó!! Muy contento con la victoria!

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Grigor Dimitrov Shows Off Dancing Skills
We’re glad Grigor takes his side hustle as a member of the One Handed Backhand Boys seriously.   He showed off his dancing skills at a charity event over the weekend, and he’s got some serious moves.  (Don’t forget about that time he sang a Backstreet Boys song, too!)

Juan Martin del Potro Kicks Off Clay Season in Estoril
Delpo is back in action in his first tournament since the Miami Open.  He is starting his clay season at the Estoril Open in Portugal, with just 3 weeks to go until Roland Garros!

Roger Federer Attends Met Gala
Federer is taking some time off from the tour, with his next tournament likely at Roland Garros at the end of the month.   He’s been keeping busy in the meantime!  He hosted a charity event in Seattle over the weekend with Bill Gates, John Isner, and Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready, bringing in over 2 million for the Roger Federer Foundation.   Fed then flew to NYC for the Met Gala, rocking a Gucci suit with a crystal cobra on it.  (Don’t forget he is GQ’s reigning Best Dressed Man)

Lucas Pouille Wins 2nd Title in Budapest
Frenchman Lucas Pouille won the 2nd title of his career, and his first on clay at the Gazprom Hungarian Open.  This was the first ATP World Tour Event ever held in Budapest.  Lucas defeated Aljaz Bedene in the final 6-3, 6-1.

Tennis Tuesday: News Roundup

This Week’s Tournament:
Davis Cup

Last Week’s Winner:
Miami Open – Roger Federer

Roger Federer Wins Sunshine Double
Roger Federer’s incredible comeback continues!  He pulled off the “sunshine double” (aka winning both Indian Wells and Miami) for just the 3rd time in his career, defeating Rafael Nadal in the Miami Open final 6-3, 6-4.   It’s Federer’s 3rd title of the 2017, and the 3rd time he’s played and defeated Nadal this year.  2017 has been a fun year for tennis, hasn’t it?   Federer did say on court that he’d be sitting out most of the clay season and his next tournament would be Roland Garros.

🍊

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Davis Cup Quarterfinals This Weekend
The Davis Cup is back April 7-9!  The World Group Quarterfinals are taking place in venues across Europe and Australia.  We’re looking forward to the tie between the US and Australia as John Isner, Jack Sock, Sam Querrey & Stevie Johnson take on Nick Kyrgios, Jordan Thompson, Sam Groth & John Peers.

Australia (host) vs USA
France (host) vs Great Britain
Belgium (host) vs Italy
Serbia (host) vs Spain

The #NextGen is Coming
#NextGen ATP stars Sascha Zverev and Jared Donaldson were both impressive in Miami.  Sascha defeated John Isner (saving 3 match points) and Stan Wawrinka en route to the Quarterfinals, where he fell to Nick Kyrgios in one of the best matches of the Miami Open.  Jared Donaldson played his way through qualifying and made it to the 4th round.  He eventually lost to Jack Sock, but his run in Miami brings him to a career high of 75 in the ATP rankings.

A rivalry for the ages. See you again my friend 🙏🏽🎾

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Tennis Watching Etiquette
We’ve covered concert etiquette before, and after watching the match between Nick Kyrgios and Roger Federer last week, we feel the need to address tennis watching etiquette as well.  If you’re lucky enough to be watching a professional tennis match in person, here are some things to keep in mind.
1. Cheering in support of your favorite player is fine, but show some respect for the other player.  Calling out against them, cheering negative things, or playing linesman and calling close balls “out” is rude and distracting to both players.
2. Learn when to cheer and when to be quiet.  Generally speaking, if the ball is in play, that’s your cue to sit and watch.   Between points, cheering is welcome and encouraged!   But please do not applaud double faults and do not call out in between 1st and 2nd serves.
3. Wait for the changeovers to enter or leave your seats.  It’s distracting to both the players and the other fans in the stadium to have people constantly going in and out.
4. Enjoy points like this!

Tennis Tuesday: News Roundup

This Week’s Tournament:
Miami Open – Miami, FL USA

Last Week’s Winner:
BNP Paribas Open – Roger Federer

Introducing the (One-Handed) Backhand Boys
Roger Federer may have won the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells over the weekend, but he also won the internet and the hearts of fangirls around the world with the return of the Backhand Boys.  Federer joined fellow one-handed backhanders Grigor Dimitrov and Tommy Haas for a singalong of Chicago’s “Hard to Say I’m Sorry.”  You might recall the trio singing  together back at the Australian Open, and this new video shows they’ve been working on their moves and their vocals.  Tour soon?

As much as we love the Backhand Boys, we think they could use a couple of extra members to make up the classic 5 member boyband!   We’d love to see Stan Wawrinka, Dominic Thiem, Richard Gasquet or Feliciano Lopez join the lineup.  Auditions in Miami?

The Backhand Boys could use a rival boyband just to keep things fresh.  May we present *NSYDE OUT led by some of the best forehands on the ATP Tour: Juan Martin del Potro, Jack Sock, and Rafael Nadal with Vasek Pospisil (he so needs/wants to be in a boyband) and Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

Denis Shapovalov Wins 1st Challenger Title
#NextGenATP player Denis Shapovalov won his first challenger title over the weekend in his native Canada at the Challenger Banque Nationale Drummondville.  At 17-years-old, Denis is the youngest ATP Challenger winner so far this year and now the youngest player in the top 200.  Denis defeated his friend and countryman Felix Auger-Aliassme in the semi-finals en route to the title.

Gael Monfils Out With Injury
Gael Monfils is one of the most entertaining players in tennis, with an explosive game and incredible athleticism.   Unfortunately, his big game has led to quite a few injuries over the years, and Gael’s latest setback is a tear in his Achilles’ heel and chondropathy Patella.  He is out of the Miami Open and will start rehab.  We hope to see Gael back on court soon!  (so we can see more shots like this)

ATP University Class of 2017 Graduate in Miami
Every year in Miami, the ATP World Tour hosts “ATP University” for the youngest players on tour.  The 3-day program teaches the players about life on tour including player relations, social media, nutrition, and finance.  It also gives the new players a chance to get to know each other and adjust to their hectic new schedule.  This year’s class included young Americans Reilly Opelka, Noah Rubin, Michael Mmoh, and Stefan Kozlov.

Congrats to the #ATP University Miami class of 2017! 🎓🎉👏🏻 #tennis

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Roger Federer Covers GQ‘s April Issue
Things can be rough for a tennis fan in the off-season.  It’s hard to fill the time normally spent with following scores and matches across the globe with some non-tennis related activities.  Which is how back in December, with no brackets to fill out, tennis fans made it their priority to vote Roger Federer as the Best Dressed Man in GQ‘s Most Stylish Man poll.   Federer won the poll in a landslide, taking out Kanye West, Ryan Gosling, and more in the process.  With his new honor, Federer is on the cover of GQ‘s April issue.  Read the story here!

Tennis Tuesday: Australian Open Recap

This Week’s Tournaments:
Davis Cup – Round 1

Last Week’s Winners:
Australian Open:
Roger Federer
Serena Williams
Henri Kontinen & John Peers
Bethanie Mattek-Sands & Lucie Safarova
Abigail Spears & Juan Sebastian Cabal

Roger Federer Defeats Rafael Nadal To Win 18th Major Title
We got the dream final we’d all been hoping for since the draw came out:  Roger Federer vs Rafael Nadal!   It was the first time they’ve played against each other in a slam final since 2011.   The 5-set match was thrilling from start to finish, with Federer winning 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3.  The surprising final was especially sweet considering both players had been sidelined with injuries just months ago.  It’s wonderful seeing both players back on tour and on top of the game!  We’re looking forward to the rest of the season.

Rivals with respect. 👏💪🏆 #Federer #Nadal #AusOpen 📸: @besolomon

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Grigor Dimitrov!
The Bulgarian fans were out in full force throughout the Australian Open, cheering on Grigor Dimitrov through the Semifinals.  Grigor was very impressive in his run to the Semis.  He pushed Nadal to 5 sets in one of the best matches of the tournament.  We’re glad to see Grigor playing at such a high level again, and can only hope this leads to a great season for him!

Mischa Zverev Reaches Career High Ranking
Zverev was a name heard frequently over the last two weeks, but it wasn’t talk of the 19-year-old #NextGen star Sascha Zverev.  His older brother, 29-year-old Mischa Zverev, reached the Quarterfinals of a slam for the first time, defeating current #1 Andy Murray in the process.  He lost to eventual champion Roger Federer in the Quarterfinals, but Mischa is now at a career high ranking of #35.


Davis Cup Round 1 Action

We’re already going through tennis withdrawl with the Australian Open ending.  Lucky for us, the 2017 Davis Cup gets underway this weekend, with first round ties happening around the world February 3-5.   Make sure you tune in and cheer for your favorite teams!
World Group Round 1: (host country in bold)
Argentina
vs Italy
USA vs Switzerland
Germany vs Belgium
Australia vs Czech Republic
Japan vs France
Canada vs Great Britain
Serbia vs Russia
Croatia vs Spain

Your 2016 #daviscup champions, Argentina! #🎾 #tennis

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Tennis Tuesday: Let The Season Begin!

The 2017 tennis season has officially begun!   Nearly all the top players are back in action this week, in tournaments in Australia, Qatar, and India in the lead up to the Australian Open.   We love how tennis starts the year off strong – first slam of the year is less than two weeks away!

This Week’s Tournaments:
Brisbane International – Brisbane, Australia
Qatar ExxonMobil Open – Doha, Qatar
Aircel Chennai Open – Chennai, India
Hopman Cup – Perth, Australia

Nadal and Federer are Back in Action
Fans around the world are thrilled that both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are back after a short hiatus.  Before this week, Federer had not played since losing to Milos Raonic in the Wimbledon semi-finals in July and dealing with a lingering knee injury.  How excited are people to see him?  Over 6,000 showed up just to watch him practice in Perth.   Nadal has been looking strong so far, with wins over David Goffin and Milos Raonic in an exhibition in Abu Dhabi.   Rafa’s playing in the Brisbane Open, which means hanging out with koalas!

 

Make That Sir Andy Murray
Andy Murray ended 2016 by becoming the #1 tennis player in the world, and he just started 2017 by being given a knighthood in Queen Elizabeth II’s New Year’s Honours List.

New Season, New Coaches
Lots of coaching changes happened in the off season.  Novak Djokovic announced he would no longer be working with Boris Becker.  Rafael Nadal added Carlos Moya to his team, while Milos Raonic’s new head coach is Richard Krajicek.

#TeamMilos

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