Event. / Space.

Rah Rah Rah ROGER.

RahRoger_1FLUSHING, QUEENS.

T H E   M A T C H

RahRoger_4Despite this being my third appearance at the beloved US Open, last night was my first true experience as a tennis fan.

When I bought tickets about a week and a half ago, I took a chance and paid an extra 13$ or so to guarantee that my night match would showcase one of the Men’s Quarterfinals (read, I had a 1 in 4 chance of seeing Federer). Then I spent the rest of that week and a half wishing/praying/holding my breath that
A) Roger would advance
B) I would be lucky enough to see him take care of business at 8PM on Sept. 4th, and
C) It wouldn’t be too, too humid (hey, if I’m already asking…)

Not only did D) All of the above happen, he stepped into Arthur Ashe wearing black from head to toe.

Let me be clear, I love Roger in all black.

But perhaps the all black ensemble was meant to mourn his first two sets against Gael Monfils, because it was apparent Fed had left his fantastic finesse game back in the locker room – delivering unforced error one after the other. Frustrating is a light way to put it, for fans and Fed alike, when his losses were at his own hand, making an erratic – albeit hilarious – Monfils shine. To salt the wounds, all line call challenges by Monfils were rewarded. Federer? Not so much. All seemed lost for the former No.1, and sadly enough, I’m not sure if anyone was surprised. At a ripe 33, his agility and strength also seems to look aged compared to the players still in their 20’s. 

However, things started to turn around in the third set: Federer avoided two match points for Monfils, and spent the next two hours slowly climbing back to the top (where he belongs). The difference between Roger’s casual demeanor in the first two sets compared to the fire in both his footwork and strokes in the latter half of the match was a quick as turning on a light switch. From floaty rallies to striking shots with both purpose and direction, he was able to pull himself out of a very, very deep hole he had dug.

The last match was by far the easiest to stomach – the old Roger you know and love resurfaced, and all was right in the tennis world. Hopefully he can sustain his current winning record against Marin Cilic on Super Saturday (and then take down strong favorite Djokovic on Monday – but I won’t get ahead of myself).

I’m am a very proud fan today. Tired, but incredibly happy. To the h8rs: #FedsStillGotIt.

Play by play, here.

T H E   G R O U N D S

RahRoger_2I couldn’t have asked for a better summer evening to watch the best of the best do his thang. Lauren, my better half, and I arrived to a gorgeous sun settling down over Billie Jean King, coloring the sky with an stunning peach and coral ombre. We sat in Section 322, at the south end of the court, and to be honest, the seats were pretty fab. We had a really clear view of the entire match (save when our view was blocked by people walking up and down). Watching tennis live versus on TV/ Livestream is more of a rewarding experience. I thoroughly appreciated the lack of commentary and relished in cheering with other fans. (To the raspy screaming fan yelling ‘Gael’ all night, I hope your voice still exists today. You were bringin’ it.)

If you have time and money to spare, food and [alcoholic] beverages are worth it here. The roomie, who attended the night match on Monday, recommended dropping some cash to get the official Open cocktail, the Honey Deuce, which comes in a commemorative cup. The thing comes with little melon balls meant to represent tennis balls. Melon tennis balls as part of your drink AND a fancy new cup? Sold. Sold. From the waffle fries to Ben & Jerry’s to pizza to nachos – your appetite also has several options to choose from! For more info and fancier dining fare, click here.

If you still have some money left in that wallet of yours, definitely check out the swag at the various stands around the venue. From standard Open gear (shirts, hats, towels, etc.) to brand name goods (Nike, POLO Ralph Lauren, Wilson, etc.), shop ’til you drop! I ended up grabbing some fun gifts for my family back home and hardly broke the bank – just make sure you have patience to deal with all the options & other fans.

For a “first timer,” this was an even better outing when shared with a sister, especially one as beautiful and happy as mine is! We met on tennis courts – what better way to spend some quality time, right?

If anyone has tickets that are amazing and/or free for tonight – Sunday… email me!

Notes:

(for future Open fans & those visiting Flushing the next few days)

  • Get the Honey Deuce (if you’re 21+). Do it.
  • Water bottles ARE ALLOWED, as long as they’re plastic
  • Avoid a bag/ purse if you can, so you can skip the long bag check line
  • Ladies, do NOT bring perfume bottles, they will be discarded
  • Take your time and look at everything before making a purchase, returning/repurchasing is sort of a hassle for the employees

xx

usopen.org

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