A large and energetic crowd turned out at Sportime Stadium at Randalls Island on Monday night, July 19th, and they were treated to three star players in World TeamTennis action, as the home team New York Sportimes took on the New York Buzz.
KIm Clijsters and John McEnroe played for the Sportimes, while former world number one-ranked Martina Hingis played for their upstate rivals, the New York Buzz. The fans were treated to the talents of these three stars immediately, as all three took the court, along with Scoville Jenkins of the Buzz, for a mixed-doubles match. Hingis & Jenkins defeated the Sportimes team of Clijsters & McEnroe, 5-3.
"I love playing in my home spot of New York," said McEnroe. "It allows me to play the hero most of the time. And when we get more people here and good crowds, it's fun!"
Next up, in women's doubles action, Clijsters & Abigail Spears of the Sportimes defeated Hingis & Sarah Borwell of the Buzz 5-2 to give the Sportimes an overall 8-7 lead. McEnroe took to the court next and faced Alex Domijan of the Buzz. Both held serve throughout the match, setting up a tie-break that Domijan was able to win as he took the match, 5-4. Domijan's victory tied the overall score at 12 with two matches to play.
"This is my thrid season with the Sportimes and I love it," said Ashley Harkleroad of the Sportimes who sat out the evening's action. "My husband is the coach (Chuck Adams) and I'm close with Jesse Witten. The familiarity with the Sportime staff makes it nice. The stadium is great, and I get to stay in the city for the summer instead of traveling. It's nice to stay put. "
"I love the World TeamTennis experience, team spirit and team events in general," said Hingis. "I always considered myself a team player, and actually have more doubles Grand Slams than singles."
Next up was a battle between two former world number one-ranked ladies as Clijsters and HIngis squared off. Clijsters proved to be too much for Hingis on this night though and she hit groundstroke winners from both sides and prevailed 5-2, giving the Sportimes a 17-14 lead with one match left.
Mens doubles closed out the evening as the team of Robert Kendrick & Jesse Witten for the Sportimes took on Scoville Jenkins & Alex Domijan of the Buzz. Kendrick & Witten, who hadn't played yet on this night, didn't show any signs of rust though, as they were victorious, 5-3, giving the Sportimes an overall 22-17 match win.
It was a great night for tennis in New York, and all those who came out and experienced the World TeamTennis format surely enjoyed the evening. New York tennis fans should continue to support the Sportimes as they are on the verge of making the WTT 2010 playoffs. Tickets, should the Sportimes make the semifinals, are only $10 for all grandstand seats and may be purchased by phone at (212) 792-8500, by e-mail at email@example.com or by visiting www.nysportimes.com.
Credit all photos to Kenneth B. Goldberg
Kim Clijsters in World TeamTennis action at Sportime Stadium
Martina Hingis in action for the cross-state rival New York Buzz
John McEnroe kicks off the evening's action at Sportime Stadium
John McEnroe and Kim Clijsters share a laugh during their pre-match press conference
Scoville Jenkins of the Buzz, who along with Martina Hingis, knocked off the Sportimes team of John McEnroe & Kim Clijsters in mixed-doubles
Team Sportimes huddles before the evening's World TeamTennis action
Martina Hingis of the New York Buzz entertains questions from the media
Scoville Jenkins in action for the Buzz at Sportime Stadium at Randalls Island