VegasTennis.com would like to thank it's writers Ed Ureta and Anis Khanir and USTA-Nevada Executive Director Ryan Wolfington for providing information for this daily update. Please e-mail us ideas, insights, your comments and suggestions for this daily column and event.
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MONDAY MUST KNOW:
1. Player party at the Hilton was amazing (Sunday) - Dinner then a private concert. The event was a fundraiser as well for the USTA-Nevada junior programs, thanks to the Tennis Channel Jennifer Kenas and David Egdes
2. Opening night was sick with two former #1 players facing off in front of an almost sold out crowd.
3. Hewitt issued a beating 6-2, 6-1 - needing only 56 minutes to dispatch the two-time major champion and former world number one.
4. Tuesday around 2pm local phenom Asia Muhammad in main draw doubles - last year Andre came to all her matched. (Asia is a product of Andre's Boys and Girls club, coached by local pro Tim Blenkiron)
5. Tuesday - John Isner center court at noon followed by Fernando Gonzales.
6. Tuesday all kids 12 and under free, with Tennis demos, instruction, giveaways, meet pro's, Free snacks from Trader Joes, , day session only.
7. Tuesday Night- Family night with face painting, video game tent, facility and tennis program information for families, free popcorn and more. Present Papa Johns pizza box at box office for discounted tickets.
8. Tuesday night Hewitt plays doubles and Baghdatis in singles night match
TUESDAY MATCH UPS:
TUESDAY DAY SESSION HIGHLIGHTS:
NOON - Isner, then Gonzales and Asia Muhammad
TUESDAY NIGHT SESSION HIGHLIGHTS:
5:30pm - Hewitt Doubles
7pm Marcos Baghdatis vs Vibce Spadea
IN DEPTH - WHAT HAPPENED SUNDAY-MONDAY:
LAST NIGHT - The player party Sunday night at tournament sponsor Las Vegas Hilton was off the hook. Press room veterans said it was top 5 player party of the year. Rick White, marketing Director at the Hilton, had the private VIP party in one of the hotels top restaurants and then off to the showroom for a private concert from the property headliners "Shimmer." Pictures to be posted soon. Players stayed till almost midnight, very rare for player parties. "Tennis Channel CEO Ken Solomon was dancing all night long!
TODAY - USTA and USPTA held their annual meetings for committee's and training at the Suncoast. Tonight they hosted board and committee members in the luxury boxes. Thanks to the leadership at USPTA and our own Shari Spencer from Las Vegas, who is also the USTA-Intermountain President, these organizations held their meetings at the same time as the Tennis Channel Open and added some flair to their annual meeting. (Those interested in being a volunteer and getting on USTA committee's please call Ryan Wolfington at USTA-Nevada 702-792-8384)
MONDAY HIGHLIGHTS: Who's who was out and about, including : CEO of Las Vegas Hilton Rudy Prieto (Major Sponsor of event), court side with USTA board members Shari Spencer,. Holger Nichol, Tim Blenkiron, Frank Adams and others. Celebrities Kevin Janison, weatherman who does a ton for tennis, Film Producer and Directors Monte Lapica and Tommy Bell on site. Tournament sponsor Laurie Steed of Granello Bakery, Fred Darling, Winnie and Bob Schulman, Dr. Jeff and Lisa Parker, Kelly Morgan, Vice President of the USTA-Nevada board Ron Muhammad, fellow board members Ken Shioi, Minette Curnutt, Claire and Neil Roth, Bob and Mary Thompson, Debbie Davis, Dr. Daulat, Mr and Mrs Raephelson, Pinnacle High Rise Mike and Brittany Bellon , Rae Melanson, and many others.
ALSO: Former #1 Lleyton Hewitt gave Mirat Safin a beating in front of an almost sold out crowd. The two former #1 players made for an amazing opening night that set the tone for a big week. Defending Tennis Channel Open champion Lleyton Hewitt began defense of his 2007 title with a comprehensive 6-2, 6-1 win over Russian Marat Safin. The second-seeded Hewitt needed only 56 minutes to dispatch the two-time major champion and former world number one. He'll next face the winner of the Julien Benneteau/Jonas Bjorkman match.
ANOTHER HIGHLIGHT: American Sam Querrey beat Sebastien Grosjean of France 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (8). Querrey fired nine aces in the match, including one clocked at 136 mph.
DON'T FORGET: HILTON CUP WOMENS PRO EVENT: Frenchwoman Aravane Rezai is the top seed in this $50,000 Challenger. She joins other international stars such as Austrian Yvonne Meusburger, Swede Sofia Arvidsson, and China's Meng Yuan, and local phenom Asia Muhammad in the battle for the Hilton Cup.
1. Seeing the Darling Center almost full opening night
2. Ginepri fighting back to win in three sets 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 over Xavier Malisse
3. Watching Former Vegas junior Sam Querrey become one of America's future stars, coming back to beating Sebastian Grojean is three sets, winning 6-2, 4-6, 7-6(8)
4. Nicolas Keifer beating Banjamin Becker (guy who beat Andre in his last US Open match) 6-4, 6-3
5. Guillermo Canas (ARG) defeat Thomas Johansson (SWE) 63 76(3)
6. USPTA Pro's were having a big party in the VIP tent, you could hear it from the front gate.
7. State Championship tennis teams Palo Verde and Gorman college prep were honored on center court, as were all the tennis teams in the valley that came for high school tennis night.
8. Seeing the tennis community out in full force: Johnnie Lane, Ken Shioi, Gordon Hammond, Saad Ashraaf, Danny Bonjourno, Billy Derango, George Cantu, USTA-Nevada's Jerry Johnson, Rob Merriman, Diana Winna and Mary Marigos
QUOTE OF THE DAY by Mirat Safin to VegasTennis.com reporter Ed Ureta:
“I am feeling pretty good in playing Lleyton tomorrow and this year the weather is better so that helps my game”, commented Safin. He also stated that he is feeling strong and that he is waiting for his best days in tennis yet to come. According to atptennis.com these players are 6-6 against each other , but now Lleyton has the upper hand with his win tonight