World_news It Just Means More: The last Grand Slam of the decade will deliver – Tennis Magazine


NEW YORK—You may have wanted Serena Williams and Roger Federer to prevail at Wimbledon; you may have wanted Dominic Thiem to dethrone Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros; you may have preferred Petra Kvitova come away with the Australian Open title, rather than Naomi Osaka. You may have wanted the exact opposite to occur in all three of these scenarios, or something else entirely. No matter what you wanted, you probably wanted it to happen badly. (Sorry, Fed fans.)

The point is, there is an emotional investment spent during the Grand Slam tournaments that is incomparable to any other Tennis event, and not only from the fans. The players care about these eight weeks more than any other on the calendar—and with just two of those Grand Slam weeks remaining, you can be assured that all of their remaining chips will be pushed in. The majors always deliver in terms of drama, and this year’s US Open should be no different.

You can sum this up with a slogan that the Southeastern Conference (SEC) uses in college football, whose season just began on Saturday: “It just means more.”

The 2019 US Open began with high hopes and impeccable weather. (Getty Images)

The majors have meant more this decade than any other in Tennis history. The players craft their schedules around the Slams, aiming to peak physically and mentally for the celebrated fortnights. This, of course, comes at the expense of other tournaments, even those at the ATP Masters and WTA Premier levels. No one batted an eye when Nadal opted against going for the Canada-Cincinnati doubles after his imperious performance in Montreal.

“I don’t think the seasons are too long,” Nadal said in his champion’s press conference at the Rogers Cup. “What is too long is the mandatory events.”

Likewise, everyone understood Serena Williams’ decision to retire from the Toronto final and withdraw from Cincinnati, and we all got why Federer and Djokovic played just one tune-up tournament before Flushing Meadows. And while the gap between the major haves and have-nots has never been greater, most players, even those at the lower end of the rankings spectrum, subscribe to this approach—just look at all of the late withdrawals from last week’s Bronx Open for evidence.

This development, which has only become more prevalent over the last 10 years, isn’t a good thing for Tennis as a whole. But it’s a great thing for the majors. So here we are, ready to reap the benefits on our individual emotional rollercoasters.

Some of the top stories heading into this year’s US Open include:

World_news A first-rounder between Serena and Maria Sharapova.

World_news Can Coco Gauff handle the hype at her home Slam?

World_news Madison Keys won Cincinnati. Can she finally deliver a title run at a major?

World_news The Big 3 return to the big stage, where they’ve loomed larger than ever.

World_news Which Nick Kyrgios will show up in New York?

Wake up every morning with Tennis Channel Live at the US Open, starting at 8 a.m. ET. For three hours leading up to the start of play, Tennis Channel’s team will break down upcoming matches, review tournament storylines and focus on everything Flushing Meadows.

Tennis Channel’s encore, all-night match coverage will begin every evening at 11 p.m. ET, with the exception of earlier starts on Saturday and Sunday of championship weekend.

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