By Katie Tabb, All American tennis player and Accountant Extraordinaire
If Wimbledon is the prissy, white-wearing, “Heaven forbid I get grass-stains” epitome of tennis tradition, then the US Open is its bastard cousin. Fans are rowdy, each match is a competition and a fashion show, and nothing about it could be described as traditional. If you are lucky enough to be in New York between now and the second Sunday of September, head out to Flushing to catch a little of the action. If you need more convincing, here are some reasons to check out the tournament before the main draw begins on Monday, August 31:
1. Cheer on American hotties Jesse Witten and Tim Smyczek as they try to grunt, sweat, and work their way into the main draw. Tickets to the qualifying rounds are only around $10.
2. Avoid the crowds and mingle with the players. Big names like Roger Federer and Maria Sharapova practice within feet of bystanders, sign autographs, and sometimes chat with fans as they meander about the tournament grounds. And swimsuit model Brooklyn Decker will almost certainly make an appearance to support her man, Andy Roddick. Let’s hope that marriage doesn’t last and they’re both back on the market soon.
3. Arthur Ashe’s Kids’ Day is anything but childish. Performers like Jordan Sparks and Will Ferrell will make appearance at the pre-tournament gathering this year, and fans can also watch top seeds Andy Murray, James Blake, and Kim Cljisters engage in a little friendly competition. Saturday, August 29. 9:30 am- 4:00pm. $10-$35.
James Blake is manly…