Were you one of the millions of viewers who watched the Wimbledon finals this weekend?
First we were treated on Saturday to the Women’s Final between Venus and Serena Williams – a rematch of their Grand Slam final five years ago. Venus won in straight sets. They also won the Women’s doubles title a few hours later (and between the two of them walked away with $2.5 million). Finally, Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic whom I saw in Paris at the French Open, won the Men’s doubles.
Much of the drama would play out on Sunday with the Men’s Final between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Many have written about it – in fact a search on Google yielded over 5,000 entries. In my books Roger Federer will still go down as one of the greatest tennis players ever. It was a devastating loss, but he’s not done yet by any stretch. I wish him well as he prepares to reassert himself. It won’t be easy, particularly with Nadal and Djokovic at his heels. However, cheer up Roger. The 2008 US Open can be your lucky Grand Slam 13!
While the media has focused their attention on what these players are doing on the courts, I decided to check out their presence online. All of the ranked players have websites, and you can link to these here. Due to the international nature of the sport, many host their website in several languages. The majority also host interactive forums in which you are requuired to sign in before you post comments or pose questions to the athlete. Several have links to foundations they have started as a way of giving back.
Blogging — not so much. I noted some exceptions however: Rafa, Ana Ivanovic, Jelena Jankovic, Andy Murray and Venus Williams. While Venus posts infrequently (only two during the two weeks of WImbledon), she is the only one to allow comments. Rafa has blogged during all three Grand Slams this year. He tends to post every couple of days, and does so by dictating the posts to his PR manager who actually puts them up. His blog, together with Andy’s and Ana’s, are done with partial assistance of a British newspaper.
Lots of good general tennis blogs however. Here are some of the ones I’ll be following: Craig Hickman’s Tennis Blog, Most Valuable Network Tennis Diary, ESPN’s Tennis.com Blog, and for a great all round web site with information on official rankings, pro schedule, tournament results, links to player and fan websites – there’s Tennis.com.