Chris Evert has signed a multi-year representation agreement with global-based Lagardère Unlimited, the sport and entertainment company, for exclusive worldwide representation, sponsorship, licensing and speaking opportunities. Evert won 18 majors, was ranked No.1 in the world for seven consecutive years, and she still holds the record for the highest winning percentage of any player, male or female - an astonishing 92.4%.

"I’ve watched Lagardère Unlimited emerge as the leading sports and entertainment agency over the past couple of years. When Arnaud Lagardère, himself, took an interest in my brand, it impressed me greatly," said Evert.

Among its businesses, Lagardère Unlimited represents some of the world’s best athletes in Sports and Entertainment, including basketball, cricket, mixed martial arts, fencing, football, swimming, motorsports, track and field and rugby, as well as tennis. Among the athletes that the company represents are Andy Roddick, Gael Monfils and Justine Henin,  Magic Johnson, John Wall, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Dwight Howard, Randy Moss, Sachin Tendulkar and Joakim Noah.


 
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have been re-elected as the ATP Player Council President and Vice-President respectively at a vote taken during the ATP players' meeting at the US Open. The complete Player Council line-up is:

Roger Federer (President)
Rafael Nadal (Vice-President)
Yves Allegro
Eric Butorac
Ashley Fisher
Fernando Gonzalez
Peter Luczak
Jarkko Nieminen
Sam Querrey
Nenad Zimonjic
Claudio Pistolesi (Coach)
Ignacio Hirigoyen (Alumni)
 
For reasons known only to herself, Serena Williams has refused to discuss the incident that led to her cutting her foot on glass when she was at a Munich restaurant shortly after Wimbledon. It also led to surgery and her missing the entire US hardcourt season. While she has remained silent on the bizarre incident, commentator Mary Carillo has shed some light on the matter.

While broadcasting the Pilot Pen final for CBS on Saturday, Carillo revealed that the injury was sustained when a beer bottle fell on Serena’s foot while she was in a bar. Customers in the bar were watching a World Cup soccer tie and apparently became over-excited, resulting in the injury.

Having played just six events this season - Sydney, Australian Open, Rome, Madrid, Roland Garros and Wimbledon - Serena is scheduled for Tokyo, Beijing and the WTA Championships in Doha during the remainder of the year.

 
The future of the Davis Cup, one of the most contentious of issues and a subject the. most fertile minds in tennis have repeatedly visited, came up for discussion at the ITF annual general meeting. But calls for a vast overhaul of the century old competition were dismissed unanimously.

Ideas such as the Davis Cup being staged every other year or the World Group being compacted into a fortnight long event held in one location, were deemed unnecessary.

Representatives from the proposed World Cup of Tennis, proposed by a group of Australian businessmen and viewed as a direct threat to Davis Cup, were even invited to the AGM held in Washington DC.

"The Davis Cup is an institution in tennis and long may it continue in its current format," said a high ranking ITF official. "We are mindful that other people have other ideas on how the event should be run and that is only natural because it is the paramount annual international team competition in the world of sports.

"However the crowds and interest generated, plus the revenue brought in to further the growth of tennis worldwide, suggests we are currently moving on the right tracks."

One idea discussed which could be implemented after further meetings is to allow the champion and runner up nations first round byes in the following year's competition, so trimming the World Group from 16 nations to 14.
 
Serena Williams will most certainly not be taking a competitive role at this year’s U.S. Open but Shino Tsurubuchi, the line-judge who was subjected to a profane and aggressive torrent of verbal abuse from the world no.1 at the end of last year’s women’s singles semi-final, will be fulfilling her normal duties.
 
Tournament organizers are insistent they have no hesitation in using the Japanese who has been working the lines at Flushing Meadows since 2007 and called Williams for a foot fault when she was two points from losing the match to eventual champion Kim Clijsters.
 
A statement issued by the United States Tennis Association said: “Shino Tsurubuchi is a world class official and we are confident in her abilities.
 
“Consistent with U.S. Open officiating assignments, Ms. Tsurubuchi will officiate in both men’s and women’s matches, and will rotate through the various on-court officiating positions.”
 
Tournament policy, that prohibits any comments to the media by any on court officials, means Tsurubuchi is not allowed to speak about returning to the scene where she was subjected to abuse from Williams that tournament director Jim Curley referred to at the time as ‘threatening’.
 
But speaking in an interview to Sports Illustrated during the ATP World Tour event in Delray Beach earlier this year Tsurubuchi, an International Tennis Federation ratified white badge holder said: “As an official you do not want to be famous. But I think I made the right call and I want to come back because my favorite tournament is the U.S. Open. I love it. I want to work [again] it's very important for me.”
 
Williams was immediately handed a $10,000 fine by the U.S.T.A. after being charged with unsportsmanlike conduct, the maximum onsite penalty a tennis player can face. Later in the year she was hit by an additional $82,500—a record—by the Grand Slam administrator Bill Babcock and told she would be suspended from the U.S. Open if she has another “major offense” at any Grand Slam tournament in 2010 or 2011.
 
Take about dressin up for the occasion. Venus had an short, little black dress that looks like she was going out to the New York Night Club.  Risky Business.
 
Eight years after coaching Pete Sampras to his 14th  and last major title at the U.S. Open , Paul Annacone will take his familiar seat in the Arthur Ashe Stadium on Evening No.1 of this year’s event after being formally integrated into Roger Federer’s support team as coach. Annacone, Sampras’ coach for nine of the American’s majors, is still technically contracted to Britain’s Lawn Tennis Association where he has spent almost four years as Head Coach of Men’s Tennis and only last week was fulfilling his duties as Jamie Baker and Alex Bogdanovic failed in their efforts to qualify. The 47 year-old Long Islander, who also coached Britain’s Tim Henman to semi-finals at Wimbledon, the US Open and the French Open, spent a trial period with Federer earlier this month at the Toronto Masters 1000 series event when the Swiss reached the final.  “We’ve moved it from a test trial to integrating Paul into the team now so that’s going ahead,” said Federer who went on to win his first title since January’s Australian Open at the following Cincinnati Masters 1000 event.
 
Severin Luthi, the Swiss Davis Cup captain who has loosely filled the role of Federer’s coach for the last four years, will continue to be part of the team alongside fitness experts Stephane Vivier and Pierre Paganini.
 
Federer admitted he finds many of Annacone’s anecdotes about his time working with Sampras as inspirational but when asked what the American adds to his chances he said: “His experience, I guess.
 
“He’s a very nice guy and he’s very calm and speaks as experience from a player and as a coach, as well. We speak occasionally about Pete and about how he was with him or about his experiences.
 
“I know so much about Pete already that I never try to copy him. I never try to be like him, but I tried to learn from him as a junior because he was my hero growing up. So definitely when I do hear stories from Paul about Pete it can be inspiring.”
 
Federer insists he is very relaxed about Annacone fulfilling any work necessary with the LTA, which may involve monitoring matches involving doubles players Colin Fleming, Ken Skupski and Ross Hutchins and British juniors who will contest next week’s Boys events.
 
“Obviously he has had to do stuff for the LTA here in New York and will have other things to do after the Open, which I’m cool about,” said Federer who last year was spurned by Darren Cahill when he made the Australian an offer to become his coach after a similar trial period.
 
Federer would not specify how many weeks a year Annacone is contracted to work with him. “I’m a Swiss guy you know and we go by minutes not weeks,” he joked.
 
The USTA announced that world No. 1 Rafael Nadal will be the top seed at the 2010 US Open in men’s singles. 

For 2010, the US Open followed the ATP World Tour rankings to determine the men’s singles seeds.  This is the ninth consecutive year that the US Open has seeded 32 players in both singles events.

1  Rafael Nadal
2  Roger Federer
3  Novak Djokovic
4  Andy Murray
5  Robin Soderling
6  Nikolay Davydenko
7  Tomas Berdych
8  Fernando Verdasco
9  Andy Roddick
10 David Ferrer
11 Marin Cilic
12 Mikhail Youzhny
13 Jurgen Melzer
14 Nicolas Almagro
15 Ivan Ljubicic
16 Marcos Baghdatis
17 Gael Monfils
18 John Isner
19 Mardy Fish
20 Sam Querrey
21 Albert Montanes
22 Juan Carlos Ferrero
23 Feliciano Lopez
24 Ernests Gulbis
25 Stanislas Wawrinka
26 Thomaz Bellucci
27 Fernando Gonzalez
28 Radek Stepanek
29 Philipp Kohlschreiber
30 Juan Monaco
31 David Nalbandian
32 Lleyton Hewitt

***


Wozniacki Named Top US Open Seed

The USTA announced that Caroline Wozniacki has been named the top seed in women’s singles at the 2010 US Open. 

For 2010, the US Open followed the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour rankings to determine the women’s singles seeds.  This is the ninth consecutive year that the US Open has seeded 32 players in both singles events.



1  Caroline Wozniacki
2  Kim Clijsters
3  Venus Williams
4  Jelena Jankovic
5  Samantha Stosur
6  Francesca Schiavone
7  Vera Zvonareva
8  Li Na
9  Agnieszka Radwanska
10 Victoria Azarenka
11 Svetlana Kuznetsova
12 Elena Dementieva
13 Marion Bartoli
14 Maria Sharapova
15 Yanina Wickmayer
16 Shahar Peer
17 Nadia Petrova
18 Aravane Rezai
19 Flavia Pennetta
20 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
21 Zheng Jie
22 Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez
23 Maria Kirilenko
24 Daniela Hantuchova
25 Alexandra Dulgheru
26 Lucie Safarova
27 Petra Kvitova
28 Alisa Kleybanova
29 Alona Bondarenko
30 Yaroslava Shvedova
31 Kaia Kanepi
32 Tsvetana Pironkova