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Jack Sock (Photo: Bill Kallenberg/BB&T Atlanta Open)

BB&T ATLANTA OPEN — Wednesday Results & Thursday Schedule

Jack Sock (Photo: Bill Kallenberg/BB&T Atlanta Open)

Jack Sock (Photo: Bill Kallenberg/BB&T Atlanta Open)

Jack Sock, the 21-year old American, ranked No. 72 in world, became the first player to reach the quarterfinals on Wednesday at the BB&T Atlanta Open. He defeated qualifier Michael Venus of New Zealand, 6-4, 6-2 in the round of 16.

In a post-match meeting with the media, Sock said that even after his recent success on the grass courts of Wimbledon (where he and partner Vasek Pospisil won the Gentlemen’s Doubles championship) and Newport (where he reached the singles semifinal), he is feeling just as comfortable as ever on the American hardcourt. His recent performances have not only supplied him with the challenging opponents that are necessary for his development as a player, but they’ve also given Sock one of the qualities that only comes from winning — confidence. Need proof? How about this? In the match Sock not only won 93% of his first serve points, but saved each break point opportunity against him.

Sock agreed: “I won some matches at the French, Wimbledon was a great showing for me, Newport winning three matches and two matches here so far, so confidence is probably the highest it has ever been.”

Sock faces Lukas Lacko (SVK) in the quarterfinal. In his match today, Lacko defeated No. 6 seed Denis Istomin (UZB) 5-7, 6-1, 6-4.

The television schedule for the remainder of the tournament is as follows:
Thursday, 7/24/14
4:00pm-10:00pm (The Tennis Channel)

Friday, 7/25/14…
4:00pm-6:00pm (ESPN2)
7:00pm-9:00pm (ESPN2)
9:00pm-11:00pm (The Tennis Channel)

Saturday, 7/26/14
3:00pm-5:00pm (ESPN2)
8:00pm-10:00pm (The Tennis Channel)

Sunday, 7/26/14
4:00pm-6:00pm (ESPN2)
(All times Eastern Daylight Savings Time)

RESULTS – JULY 23, 2014

 Singles – Second Round:
[4] V Pospisil (CAN) d [Q] I Marchenko (UKR) 75 63

L Lacko (SVK) d [6] D Istomin (UZB) 57 61 64

D Sela (ISR) d [9] S Querrey (USA) 62 64

J Sock (USA) d [Q] M Venus (NZL) 64 62

First Round:
[7] Y Lu (TPE) d [LL] A Kuznetsov (USA) 64 64

 Doubles – Quarterfinals:
K King (USA) / M Venus (NZL) d [WC] R Ginepri (USA) / R Harrison (USA) walkover

First Round:
[2] S Gonzalez (MEX) / S Lipsky (USA) d M Ebden (AUS) / Y Lu (TPE) walkover

[3] C Guccione (AUS) / J Smith (AUS) d J Erlich (ISR) / R Ram (USA) 36 63 10-6

N Barrientos (COL) / V Estrella Burgos (DOM) d S Ratiwatana (THA) / S Ratiwatana (THA) 67(2) 63 10-8


STADIUM start 4:00 pm:
[LL] T de Bakker (NED) vs [2] K Anderson (RSA)

Not Before 6:00 pm:
[1] J Isner (USA) vs [WC] R Ginepri (USA) 

Not Before 8:00 pm:
T Smyczek (USA) vs [8] M Matosevic (AUS)

start 4:00 pm:

[7] Y Lu (TPE) vs B Becker (GER) 

[3] C Guccione (AUS) / J Smith (AUS) vs N Barrientos (COL) / V Estrella Burgos (DOM) 

[1] V Pospisil (CAN) / J Sock (USA) vs B Becker (GER) / F Moser (GER) 

S Johnson (USA) / S Querrey (USA) vs [2] S Gonzalez (MEX) / S Lipsky (USA)


Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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BB&T ATLANTA OPEN – Tuesday Results & Wednesday Schedule

It was Jack Sock victory day at the BB&T Atlanta Open on Tuesday. Sock won both his singles and doubles first round matches. The featured evening doubles match offered Atlanta’s tennis fans the chance to see Sock alongside his Wimbledon champion doubles partner, Canadian Vasek Pospisil. The No. 1 seeds defeated the Columbian doubles team of Alejandro Gonzalez and Juan-Carlos Spir 6-4, 6-4.

Tim Smyczek also cruised through his first-round matches earlier Tuesday. Sock defeated Colombian Alejandro Gonzalez 6-2, 6-4 in 66 minutes, while Smyczek needed just 53 minutes to complete a 6-0, 6-2 rout of fellow American Ryan Harrison.

The 21-year-old Sock, who reached his first ATP World Tour semi-final two weeks ago in Newport, will next face 349th-ranked qualifier Michael Venus of New Zealand. Smyczek, 26, will meet eighth-seeded Marinko Matosevic. The Australian also recorded a 6-0, 6-2 victory Tuesday, dismissing last week’s Bogota semi-finalist Victor Estrella Burgos in 43 minutes.

Marietta, Georgia’s Robby Ginepri set a second-round clash with top seed and defending champion John Isner after recording his first tour-level win in more than a year on Tuesday at the BB&T Atlanta Open.

The 31-year-old finished strongly against Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky, 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-0, as he converted all three of his break point chances in the decisive set. It marked Ginepri’s first match win in ATP World Tour main draw action since reaching the Houston quarter-finals in April 2013.

Dutch lucky loser Thiemo de Bakker will face No. 2 seed and returning finalist Kevin Anderson in the second round after defeating Canadian qualifier Steven Diez 6-1, 6-2. Sixth seed Denis Istomin also advanced, defeating American lucky loser Rajeev Ram 6-1, 6-4.

RESULTS – JULY 22, 2014
Men’s Singles – First Round
[6] D Istomin (UZB) d [LL] R Ram (USA) 61 64
[8] M Matosevic (AUS) d V Estrella Burgos (DOM) 60 62
[WC] R Ginepri (USA) d S Stakhovsky (UKR) 76(3) 36 60
T Smyczek (USA) d [WC] R Harrison (USA) 60 62
J Sock (USA) d A Gonzalez (COL) 62 64
L Lacko (SVK) d [WC] N Pasha (USA) 62 75
[Q] I Marchenko (UKR) d [Q] J Smith (AUS) 64 64
B Becker (GER) d M Ebden (AUS) 64 62
[LL] T de Bakker (NED) d [Q] S Diez (CAN) 61 62

Doubles – First Round
[1] V Pospisil (CAN) / J Sock (USA) d A Gonzalez (COL) / J Spir (COL) 64 64
K King (USA) / M Venus (NZL) d D Sharan (IND) / D Young (USA) 61 36 11-9
S Johnson (USA) / S Querrey (USA) d D Istomin (UZB) / M Matosevic (AUS) 75 64

STADIUM start 2:00 pm
[3] C Guccione (AUS) / J Smith (AUS) vs J Erlich (ISR) / R Ram (USA)
[Q] M Venus (NZL) vs J Sock (USA)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[9] S Querrey (USA) vs D Sela (ISR)

AJC GRANDSTAND start 2:00 pm
N Barrientos (COL) / V Estrella Burgos (DOM) vs S Ratiwatana (THA) / S Ratiwatana (THA)
[Q] I Marchenko (UKR) vs [4] V Pospisil (CAN)
After Suitable Rest – M Ebden (AUS) / Y Lu (TPE) vs [2] S Gonzalez (MEX) / S Lipsky (USA)

COURT 3 start 3:00 pm
[7] Y Lu (TPE) vs [LL] A Kuznetsov (USA)
L Lacko (SVK) vs [6] D Istomin (UZB)

Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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BB&T ATLANTA OPEN – Monday Results

$ 647,675.00
JULY 21 – 27, 2014

RESULTS – JULY 21, 2014
Singles – First Round
[9] S Querrey (USA) d S Johnson (USA) 76(3) 75
D Sela (ISR) d D Young (USA) 63 60

Doubles – First Round
[WC] R Ginepri (USA) / R Harrison (USA) d [4] K Skupski (GBR) / N Skupski (GBR) 46 63 11-9
B Becker (GER) / F Moser (GER) d [WC] K Lovett (USA) / B O’Shaughnessey (USA) 62 60

Qualifying Singles – Third Round
Qualifying – S Diez (CAN) d T de Bakker (NED) 67(5) 20 Retired
Qualifying – I Marchenko (UKR) d A Kuznetsov (USA) 63 36 63
Qualifying – M Venus (NZL) d R Ram (USA) 57 63 75
Qualifying – J Smith (AUS) d K King (USA) 62 61

STADIUM start 2:00 pm
T Smyczek (USA) vs [WC] R Harrison (USA)
[WC] R Ginepri (USA) vs S Stakhovsky (UKR)
D Sharan (IND) / D Young (USA) vs K King (USA) / M Venus (NZL)

Not Before 7:00 pm
L Lacko (SVK) vs [WC] N Pasha (USA)
[1] V Pospisil (CAN) / J Sock (USA) vs A Gonzalez (COL) / J Spir (COL)

AJC GRANDSTAND start 2:00 pm
[LL] R Ram (USA) vs [6] D Istomin (UZB)
J Sock (USA) vs A Gonzalez (COL)
[Q] J Smith (AUS) vs [Q] I Marchenko (UKR)
S Johnson (USA) / S Querrey (USA) vs D Istomin (UZB) / M Matosevic (AUS)

COURT 3 start 1:00 pm
V Estrella Burgos (DOM) vs [8] M Matosevic (AUS)
[Q] S Diez (CAN) vs [LL] T de Bakker (NED)
M Ebden (AUS) vs B Becker (GER)

Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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Screen Shot 2014-07-19 at 11.18.04 PM

Wimbledon champs Jack Sock & Vasek Pospisil to play doubles in Atlanta

Screen Shot 2014-07-19 at 11.18.04 PMWimbledon doubles champs American Jack Sock and Canadian Vasek Pospisil are scheduled to partner in the BB&T Atlanta Open doubles draw.

The BB&T Atlanta Open is their second event playing doubles together after a successful debut in England. The duo defeated Mike and Bob Bryan, the 2013 Wimbledon titlists, in the Wimbledon final (7-6(5), 6-7(3), 6-4, 3-6, 7-5.

Pospisil and Sock are also competing in the singles draw as well. Pospisil is a newcomer to Atlanta while Sock is returning for his third time. Sock was a quarterfinalist in 2012.

“Our tournament continues to break new ground with the exciting news that two reigning Grand Slam players will debut in the United States here in Atlanta,” Tournament Director and Chief Development Officer Eddie Gonzalez said.

The doubles draw will also include top Americans Sam Querrey and Steve Johnson, who are playing doubles and singles. Querrey and Johnson reached the finals of the 2011 Tiburon Challenger.

University of Alabama teammates and qualifying wild cards Korey Lovett and Becker O’Shaughnessey, of Macon, were added to the draw. Kennesaw’s Robby Ginepri and Ryan Harrison, who have wild cards in the main draw, were also in the doubles draw.

In other news, defending champion John Isner will be the top seed in the main draw singles. The former Georgia Bulldog NCAA champion also is a two-time finalist here. The second seed is Kevin Anderson, who lost to Isner in last year’s three-set final.

Other seeds include No. 3 Gael Monfils of France, No. 4 Pospisil, No. 6 Denis Istomin, No. 7 Yen-Hsun Lu, No. 8 Marinko Matosevic and No. 9 Sam Querrey. There will be no No. 5 seed. Richard Gasquet has withdrawn from singles for a non-medical reason. Radek Stepanek has withdrawn with a left hamstring injury.

University of Georgia’s Nathan Pasha has accepted a main draw singles wild card after his teammate, Austin Smith, withdrew today. Pasha, of Atlanta, was named an All-American in 2014. He is also a two-time All-SEC player and has been ranked No. 30 in the country by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.


Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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A Last Look At The 2014 Hall Of Fame Tennis Championships

logo_bannerGiving tennis fans something to look forward to immediately following Wimbledon each year, the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in Newport attracts some of the top ATP tour players… and some of the most tennis-savvy spectators around.

The tournament, held on grass courts, is the first stop of the summer swing for pro tennis in the United States, and it offers the only opportunity to see professional men’s tennis in the Northeast prior to the US Open.

Enjoy some of the photographs taken by Parcbench last week at the perfect tennis event…

(2014 Singles Champion, Lleyton Hewitt)


(Lleyton Hewitt)

(Jack Sock)

(Samuel Groth greets a fan)


(Ryan Harrison)

(John Isner)


(Lleyton Hewitt and son)


(Rajeev Ram)



(2014 Doubles Champions, Chris Guccione and Lleyton Hewitt)


(Jack Sock)


Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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Lleyton Hewitt Is The ATP Hall of Fame Champion (In Singles And Doubles)

LH_TuesWell, the third time was the charm for good ol’ Lleyton Hewitt. The former world number one defeated second seeded six-foot-eleven Ivo Karlovic 6-3, 6-7(4/7), 7-6 (7/3) to win the ATP Hall of Fame Championships. Hewitt finally captured the title on Sunday, although it took two-and-a-half hours. Hewitt earned $81,500 for the title and Karlovic earned $42,900 for being the runner-up.

As if that weren’t enough, the 33-year-old, alongside partner and fellow Australian Chris Guccione, defeated Jonathan Erlich (ISR) and Rajeev Ram (USA) in the doubles championship 7-5, 6-4.

In very windy conditions, the third-seeded Hewitt won his 30th career ATP title. It is his second of the season (after a January victory at Brisbane) and an eighth career ATP grass-court championship. After falling to John Isner (USA) in the 2012 Newport final and to Nicolas Mahut (FRA) last year, this week’s successful run was all the more satisfying, especially considering that Hewitt has undergone five surgeries in the past five years.

For Hewitt, the 2001 US Open and 2002 Wimbledon champion, it was his second win in six meetings with Karlovic. “It was a tough match. I was really happy to get through,” said Hewitt afterward, adding that “it was nice to get rewarded today.”

When it was finally over, Hewitt fell to his knees and pumped his fists toward the sky. Within seconds, he was joined on the grass court by his three young children.

Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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It’s Lleyton Hewitt Finals Day Here in Newport

12Welcome to Lleyton Hewitt Day at the ATP Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in Newport, Rhode Island. The former world number one will appear in both the singles and doubles finals today (in that order). It’s his third consecutive singles final, and the crowd is likely going to be very supportive of the third seed as he faces second seed Ivo Karlovic. Alongside partner Chris Guccione (AUS), Hewitt (AUS) will face Jonathan Erlich (ISR) and Rajeev Ram (USA) in the doubles final.

If you’ve been lucky enough to attend the most rarified and elegant tennis event in the United States over the past few years, you’ve probably enjoyed watching Hewitt win a few matches. He has lasted in the draw to the end of the week for the past several years. You might have also have had the chance to watch his tennis-loving kids grow from babyhood to potential practice partner; Hewitt and his beautiful wife, Bec, always bring the kids to Newport. It is a sure sign that summer is in full swing when the Aussies turn the Casino veranda into a kid’s summer day camp. Kids, toys, new cans of tennis balls, new growth and freshly mowed grass… all bringing to mind the words of F Scott Fitzgerald: “That familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”

And this year is no different. Enjoy this brief clip of Lleyton on the practice court earlier in the week, with his son (a future tennis star? — note that the kid wins the point)

Hewitt advanced to the final of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships by defeating US seventh seed Jack Sock, 6-1 6-2, on Saturday. That match was Sock’s first semifinal — quite an impressive showing for a player who, a week ago, won the Wimbledon Gentlemen’s Doubles title (alongside Vasek Pospisil). Sock hung around Wimbledon just long enough to attend the Champions Ball, then he boarded a flight for Boston and came directly to Newport. After the 21-year-old Sock won match after match after match (including routing John Isner in the quarterfinal), the ever-energetic 33-year-old Hewitt proved too much of a challenge. Ivo Karlovic beat Australian Samuel Groth 6-4 6-4 in the other semi-final.


Hewitt, who lost to John Isner in the 2012 final and to Nicolas Mahut in last year’s title match, will try for a third time today at the $474,000 (US) grass court tournament. Hewitt is seeking his 30th career ATP title… and his second of the season after a Brisbane victory at the beginning of the year.

Although Karlovic is 4-1 in career meetings with Hewitt (including eliminating the Aussie defending champion in a Wimbledon first round match in 2003), Hewitt beat Karlovic in the first round of the 2009 French Open. So here’s to Hewitt, who may just take home two more trophies today, proving that within a champion always lies just more invincible summer.


(All photos © Greg Victor,

Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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Jack Sock Defeats John Isner In Newport’s Quarterfinals

Q26Well, there’s a first time for everything. And when you’re checking off accomplishments with the rapidity of American tennis player Jack Sock, it seems like there’s an achievement every week.


21-year-old Sock logged his first victory over his friend (and tournament top seed) John Isner in Newport’s Tennis Hall of Fame quarterfinals on Friday. (They two players have had four previous ATP meetings.) The two players have been spotted practicing with each other throughout the week, which could explain why there was such camaraderie on the court, especially at a match this deep into the draw. Tennis fans were delighted to see that when Isner was introduced before the match, Jack Sock made a point to applaud him.

On the green grass courts, Sock displayed a relaxed style that reflected his having won the Gentlemen’s Doubles championship at Wimbledon last week (along with partner Vasek Pospisil). It’s amazing what having to figure out how to ship a Wimbledon trophy home will do for one’s confidence.

Sock took the match over the top-seeded Isner in straight sets, with a score of 6-4, 7-6(4) in just 88 minutes. Seventh-seeded Sock saved each of the three break points he faced against Isner, and he won 33 of 42 first-serve points.

But what made the match such a pleasure for the Newport crowd was that the high level of play was matched by an equally high level of sportsmanship. At one point, when Isner disputed a line call in Sock’s favor, Sock agreed with Isner and ceded the point. A wave of enthusiasm for the act of sportsmanship swirled around the wooden, horseshoe-shaped stadium. In Newport, a moment like that is highly regarded.


Within a few games, the situation was reversed, with Sock disputing a call in Isner’s favor. Sure enough, Isner agreed with Sock and ceded that point. Now, they were even; it was something like “love-all” and it made for a swell atmosphere.

This didn’t mean that each player wasn’t trying hard to win, of course. Isner was hoping for a third Newport trophy, having won the title in 2011 (d. Rochus) and 2012 (d. Hewitt). But Sock has been on a tear this whole week. Clearly he is raring to get to the hard-court season, where expectations are high for Sock to perform well at next month’s U.S. Open in New York City.

And why not? Winning means being able to call Newport home for another day. It’s a perfect spot for lawn tennis in July. The venue is a well-run, attractive place to watch quality tennis (with every seat as close to the action as any tennis fan could dream of). The crowds are extremely tennis-savvy and there is much to do in town after the day’s matches end. As Sock said after the match, “This is one of my favorite tournaments of the year. I love the city. I love the tournament.”

Sock will face former World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt (who is making his third consecutive appearance in the final here) in the quarterfinal.


Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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A Pay Raise At The U.S. Open

1Let’s face it. For some players it’s all about the ranking. For others, it’s all about the titles and the trophy. And no doubt, for some (including more than a few tennis agents), it’s all about the check that comes with the ranking points and the trophy. For those players who don’t mind paying taxes, the 2014 U.S. Open is providing even more motivation than usual.

Last year, Rafael Nadal earned $2.6 million for winning the U.S. Open title. But that’s so 2013. This year, whoever wins the men’s and women’s singles title will take home a record $3 million.

The U.S. Tennis Association also announced that the total purse for the tournament will be $38.3 million. That is an increase of 11.7 percent from $34.3 million last year. Runners-up will get $1.45 million, an increase from $1.3 million.

Both the men’s and women’s doubles champions will earn $520,000, the highest in U.S. Open history. And — talk about motivation to make it into the tournament — any player who loses in the first round of singles at Flushing Meadows will make $35,750, an increase of $3,750.

The U.S. Open starts on Aug. 25. To visit the U.S. Open website, click here.


Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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espn-ball tumbs

Unforced Error: ESPN and the Wimbledon Doubles Coverage

espn-ball tumbsEver since Andy Roddick lost his “mojo,” the American sports media have been bemoaning the absurd notion that there are few reasons for American tennis fans to care about tennis, to buy tickets to matches or to tune in to watch tennis on television in the 21st century. They have practically declared that the current generation of American players don’t even exist… before those up-and-coming players even get to spread their racquet-gripping golden arms and fly.

Then, along came an event like the 2014 Wimbledon Gentlemen’s Doubles Final, where three out of the four players vying for a championship trophy were from the United States (Jack Sock, Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan) and the fourth was from Canada (Vasek Pospisil). When they won, Pospisil and Sock became the first pair to win a Grand Slam title in their first tournament together since Max Mirnyi and Lleyton Hewitt at the 2000 US Open. And, incidentally, Jack Sock (at 21 yrs, 285 days) became the third youngest man in the Open Era to win both a Grand Slam men’s & mixed doubles title. Wouldn’t it have been swell if, instead of whining about how there are no American tennis fans because there are no American top players, ESPN had shone the spotlight on these Americans… even if it was “only” the doubles?

On the second Saturday of Wimbledon, ESPN scheduled a tennis coverage window that extended for a whole six hours, as well as a one-hour “pregame show” at 8 a.m. ET. This seems reasonable, since the day’s order-of-play included several important matches. Yet, following an almost-over-before-it-began women’s final (that only lasted 55 minutes), ESPN could very easily have shown the Gentlemen’s Doubles final in its entirety. As if there was another reason to show it, the doubles final was being contested by one of the most popular doubles team of all time, the Bryan Brothers, Bob and Mike.
As if that weren’t enough to justify airing the tennis being played live on Centre Court, the Bryans were facing two other North Americans — Jack Sock (of the United States) and Vasek Pospisil (of Canada). Hello, ESPN marketing division — Saturday’s faceoff was a dream match made for your American audience.

Instead, ESPN decided to put the match on its live-streaming service, ESPN3. To make matters worse, ESPN’s decision not to show the men’s doubles final was accompanied by a decision to show a replay of the previous day’s men’s semifinal between Novak Djokovic and Grigor Dimitrov. That’s right — they showed a match that had aired live the previous day. It’s not like viewers didn’t have a chance to see the men’s semifinal matches the day before. That was the fourth of July — a day that any self-respecting American tennis fan no doubt had Wimbledon playing while enjoying the day off. Worst of all — ESPN fell for the false assumption that any single’s match is preferable to any double’s match. That’s what I’d call ESPN: an Especially Stupid Programming Notion.

It’s a shame that ESPN did not take advantage of the opportunity it had to build future audiences for what is likely to be a return for America to the top of the international tennis game… namely, in the form of Jack Sock. Let’s hope that in future Grand Slam coverage, the emphasis for ESPN will be on the reason that most viewers tune in — LIVE action on the courts… especially in a championship match… and especially when there are exciting American players involved.

Photo: Jack Sock and Vasek Pospisil

Photo: Jack Sock and Vasek Pospisil

Greg Victor

Greg Victor (Parcbench Culture Editor) covers the worlds of tennis and country music for Parcbench. Based in New York City and frequently on the road.

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