RealClearSports
Advertisement

RealClearSports Tennis

Serena Has Lapped the Competition

Jon Wertheim, Sports Illustrated

Best in a Special Year? Tough to Decide

Christine Brennan, USA Today

The Evolution of Roger Federer

Tom Perrotta, Wall Street Journal

At the start of this, her 34th year, Serena Williams undertook a bit of self-reflection. She pondered her persistent need to succeed and the sting that—almost two decades into he...(full article)

After another electrifying - if ultimately disappointing - run to the Wimbledon finals this summer, Roger Federer’s game is clearly functioning at near-peak levels, as his recent...(full article)

The end of August usually is one of those in-between times in sports. College and pro football are almost here, but not quite. Summer sports like tennis and golf are wrapping up. B...(full article)

Roger Federer used to dominate opponents with aces, winners, speed and a forehand that rarely missed. Now 34 years old, married and a father of four, Federer can still overwhelm, b...(full article)

The man and woman widely regarded as the greatest male and female tennis competitors of all time played back-to-back matches in the singles finals of the Western and Southern Open ...(full article)

More Recent Articles

Serena's Next Opponent Is History

Serena Williams competes against herself, mostly. Her own motivation, her own standards, even her own doubts. If she’s playing well, she doesn’t lose. That’s a ...

As Losses Mount, Nadal Still Positive

MASON, Ohio — It used to be that Rafael Nadal crashing out of a tournament in an early round caused the biggest headlines in tennis. But in a year in which he has consistently fa...

A Lout Can Learn a Lesson

See that? Did you see that Nick Kyrgios? Did you see Jason Day standing over the final putt, on the final hole, of the final round, with tears rolling down his cheeks as he tapped ...

Classless Punks Taking Over Tennis

The Golden Era in men’s tennis couldn’t last forever. Now, it seems we may be getting an early sneak peek at what the game and the industry may look like when the days of the B...

Sportsmanship a Quaint Artifact of Past

Two football players got in an argument this past week. One was a linebacker. The other was the starting quarterback. Often starting quarterbacks wear red jerseys during practices,...

He'a Not Ashamed of Anxiety Battle

Mardy Fish, the American tennis pro who had to quit the sport he loved, tells his story with ease now. In 2012 he walked away from a Labor Day showdown with Roger Federer at the U....

Shocking Upset a Red Flag for Serena

The shock waves created by Belinda Bencic's sensational upset of top-seededSerena Williams in the Rogers Cup semifinal will resonate for days. But it's never too early to put thi...

Djokovic Has Tools to Surpass Federer

It was easy to watch Novak Djokovic toy with Jack Sock at the Rogers Cup on Thursday and feel like you were watching a superstar at the absolute peak of his powers. Sock’s no...

Wozniacki: WTA's Policies Are Unhealthy

Perhaps venting about her 7-5, 7-5 loss to 18-year-old Belinda Bencic at the Rogers Cup or perhaps trying to get some catharsis from same nagging injuries that have affected her th...

Tennis, Anyone? Serena Isn't Done Yet

It’s a little past midnight at HSN headquarters, and Serena Williams is nine minutes into a disquisition on a piece of fabric she’s called “Convertible A-line Top...

Parking Lot Revolution That Rocked Tennis

By the 1988 U.S. Open, the players had had enough: They wanted, finally, the power that had seemed to be theirs for the taking in the 1970s. They wanted to run their own tour. With...

Graf's 'Golden Slam' Stands Alone

Sports fans love to talk about records that will “never be broken.” Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak, Norm Van Brocklin’s 550 passing yards in one game, Wilt Chamberla...

How to Make Tennis More Fan-Friendly

In January, tennis legends Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal tried out a souped-up version of the sport called Fast4. They played separate exhibitions in Australia under the new fo...

Summer of Slams Derailed at British Open

In the end, we did not get the Summer of Slam. Serena Williams going for the tennis Grand Slam, Jordan Spieth the golf Grand Slam, and American Pharaoh the Triple Crown of horse ...

She's 1 Win From Slam, Status as Best

In a throwback move at the champions’ dinner Sunday night, this year’s Wimbledon singles champions — Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic — danced together. Back in the day,...

Djokovic Has the Legacy But Not the Love

Novak Djokovic must have felt like the gatecrasher at a Roger Federer tribute party. So shamelessly partisan were this Centre Court crowd in their Swiss allegiance, turning SW1...

How Djokovic Rose in Age of Fed and Rafa

In the summer of 2010, Novak Djokovic faced a crossroads. Long regarded as an up-and-comer, the charismatic young Serb, still just 23, seemed to be losing his upward trajectory. It...

Tennis Doesn't Love Djokovic

LONDON — Novak Djokovic has everything but the love. He has the game, the No. 1 ranking, and now he has another Wimbledon title. But the deepest affection of the audience sti...

Djokovic Wins, But He's Still Not Best

Roger Federer is the greatest player of all time, but this was a brutal reminder that at this point in time Novak Djokovic is by far the best player on the planet. Djokovic removed...

Unshakable Djokovic Repeats at Wimbledon

After a riveting first two sets that exhibited brilliant shot-making and abrupt, dramatic shifts of momentum, Novak Djokovic played nearly flawless tennis in the final two sets t...

Serena's Grand Ambition

LONDON — Serena Williams was in such a competitive trance it made her slow to claim victory, but then, she was only three-quarters finished with this task she has set for herself...

First Set Will Be Key in Wimbledon Final

After putting on a surgical, bravura display in dispatching Andy Murray in straight sets in the Wimbledon semifinals on Friday, Roger Federer will seek to sustain – or even surpa...

America Its Own Worst Enemy in Men's Tennis

When will we learn? This is a serious problem for top-level American tennis. We keep pushing kids who aren't ready—who don't yet know how to play—onto the brutal, unforgiving p...

Andy Murray's Predictable Wimbledon Exit

These are worrying times for Andy Murray. He is no longer the upsetter, the nuisance, the man who confounds expectations. These days, for close on two years in fact, Murray's big m...

Look for Federer to Pull off the Upset

Roger Federer is less than a month from turning 34 years old. He’s been to nine Wimbledon finals, winning seven, with a 10th appearance coming in 48 hours. His overall Grand ...

2 Americans Going for Slam History

If Serena Williams, as all will logically assume, defeats Spanish sensation Garbine Muguruza on Saturday to claim her sixth Wimbledon title (and 21st Slam overall) she will be just...

Serena Winning Matches and Friends

Drake likes winners. This is well documented. So it comes as little surprise to see him at Wimbledon this week, taking photos with Novak Djokovic and Billie Jean King — both winn...

Malice Marks Serena-Sharapova Rivalry

Some rivalries are born of a shared greatness that elevates both players on to a higher plane. Others are based on mutual antipathy, mistrust and the occasional flash of malice ...

Why Sharapova Will Beat Serena in Semis

Maria Sharapova was so close. Victoria Azarenka looked to have Serena Williams on the ropes in their Tuesday quarterfinal, a position the world No. 1 has steadily found herself i...

USWNT? Great, But Don't Forget Serena

The celebration of the United States’ victory in the Women’s World Cup is right and understandable. The triumph exploded like fireworks, perfectly timed to light up the long ...

Serena Sweeps Past Her Sister

Venus Williams failed to capture her old consistent power as she lost comfortably to her sister and No 1 seed Serena in a match lacking in drama on Wimbledon’s centre court. The ...

Venus, Serena Renew Awkward Rivalry

Venus and Serena Williams have won a combined 27 Grand Slam singles titles. They have both reached No. 1 in the world. They once played each other in four straight Grand Slam fi...

'There's a Reason It Happens So Rarely'

Serena Williams is definitely not the ambivalent type. You just wouldn't know it from some of her quotes this week at Wimbledon. Her latest tactic for dealing with the snowballin...

Nadal Shouldn't Fire Uncle Toni

Novak Djokovic told long-time rival Rafael Nadal not to be panicked into sacking his uncle Toni as coach in a bid to salvage his faltering career.   US legend John McEnroe said he...

Serena Escapes With Tinge of Regret

Serena Williams looked into the abyss of Wimbledon's Centre Court heartbreak Friday, into her very psyche and the raw fear of failure that no one but the greatest can understand,...

Nadal Looks Like He's Out of Gas

The Rafael Nadal we’ve known, loved and watched dominate the sport of tennis for 10 years is gone. And he’s not coming back. Thursday’s loss to world No. 102 Dustin Brown was...

Breakout Star Caught in a Tennis Tailspin

Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard had no business playing at Wimbledon this week. She even admitted that she felt “underprepared.” But despite nursing a grade 2 abdominal muscle tear...

Stalkers Make Tennis Players Shiver

Jesper Andreassen held up a plate of 10 jalapeños for the camera, then stuffed them into his mouth, one by one, proudly tossing each stem over his shoulder as he finished. He ...

Unlike Tiger, Serena Has It Figured Out

The 33-year-old Williams has won the past three majors, is ranked No. 1 and is arguably the greatest player of all time. (To me, she's No. 2 behind Steffi Graf, but closing fast). ...

Roger's Ride a Marvel for All to Enjoy

Early on in Adam Roberts’s 2014 meta-sci-fi submarine-disaster novel, Twenty Trillion Leagues Under the Sea, a French nuclear sub called the Plongeur begins to sink in the North ...

No Question, Serena Is Player to Beat

LONDON – There are few things Serena Williams has not done in the sport of tennis. Winning a calendar Grand Slam is one of them. "I don't feel any pressure to win all four," Will...

Where Did Tennis Go Wrong?

There is no sport like tennis for fashion stories. The classic example has to be the lace-trimmed knickers worn by “Gorgeous” Gussie Moran at the 1949 Wimbledon Champio...

Unbalanced Wimbledon Draw Offers Intrigue

Of the four Grand Slam tournaments, Wimbledon has been the one with the fewest surprise champions in the Open era, especially in recent years. The Big Four (Novak Djokovic, Rafael ...

You Can't Keep Roger Federer Down

Wimbledon begins on Monday and Roger Federer is in a familiar place. The grass courts at the All England Club, where he’s won seven times, still offer the 33-year-old the best ch...

Here's the Secret to Serena's Success

If it were possible to get into someone's head, most tennis players probably wouldn't mind touring the brain of Serena Williams, with the first stop being whichever region houses t...

Azarenka Ousts '11 Champ Stosur

After crushing four successive opponents without surrendering a set, Victoria Azarenka finally got what she’d been looking for at the U.S. Open on Tuesday: A fight. And it di...

2nd-Seeded Radwanska Eliminated

Agnieszka Radwanska looked little like the player she was earlier in the tournament. As the No. 2 seed in the U.S. Open, the fourth-round match against No. 20 Roberta Vinci shoul...

Serena Cruises With Double Bagel

60-29.   What looks like a lopsided college football score was actually the point disparity between Serena Williams and her fourth round opponent, Andrea Hlavackova. It was ...

Murray Rolls Into 3rd Round

Andy Murray used his favourite platform in tennis – a night session under lights at Flushing Meadows – to cruise into the US Open third round with an emphatic demolit...

Sharapova Cruises; American Next

  Six years ago, there was the endless loop of the "I Feel Pretty"-themed Nike ad playing throughout the U.S. Open, with Maria Sharapova right smack in the center of the campa...

Sharapova Next for U.S.' Burdette

Mallory Burdette opened the summer plotting how she would take pre-med courses to pursue her dream of studying psychiatry.   A few unanticipated wins on the tennis court later...

Federer, Clijsters Start With Wins

Roger Federer was his effortless self Monday in the first round of the United States Open. He was never threatened as he dismantled Donald Young, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4, to stretch his re...

Serena Wipes Out Vandeweghe

Serena Williams walked on court for her first-round match at the U.S. Open Tuesday evening in a dark blue dress with sharp, neon-yellow triangular stripes down the middle. Her ga...

Murray Takes Opener in Straight Sets

Andy Murray's attempt to convert Olympic gold into Grand Slam silverware got off to a winning start on the first day of the US Open here yesterday. As is so often the case, howe...

Finally, This Is It for Clijsters

After her latest last, her final news conference before her final Grand Slam tournament, Kim Clijsters retreated to the players’ lawn at the United States Open. Three childre...

Ferrer Ripe for Early Upset

Howdy, tennis fans. It’s time once again to break out the cape, tall conical hat (the one with the astrological signs and iridescent stars embroidered on it), and my trusty...

Stringing Racket a Delicate Job

The modern U.S. Open tennis player is a master of racquet minutiae. In pursuit of the tiniest advantage, tennis stars tinker with their racquet’s weight, balance, string pr...

Federer's Previous Brilliance Returns

It wasn't long ago that Roger Federer, No. 1 in the world again and a Wimbledon champion for a record-tying seventh time, looked this spectacular all the time. Opponents would pu...

Town Rises, Falls With Murray's Fate

Inside Dunblane Youth Centre, strangers hugged, fists were pumped and children cheered. Boys lay on chairs shaped like tennis balls. Girls with Scottish flags painted on their c...

Stars Come Out for Men's Final

Kate and Pippa Middleton brought some star power to the royal box at Wimbledon for Sunday's men's final. The Duchess of Cambridge, 30, and her younger sister, Pippa, 28, came to ...

Emotional Murray: 'I'm Getting Closer'

An irresistible Roger Federer won his seventh Wimbledon title with a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 victory over a valiant Andy Murray on Sunday, dashing the world No4's hopes of becoming the ...

Radwanska Can Win if Serena Falters

Serena Williams' fireworks display at Wimbledon might have been some 18 hours too late to celebrate the Fourth of July, but you can bet that Agnieszka Radwanska is concerned that W...

Murray Must Come Out Swinging

Holy mackerel! That was something else, wasn't it? What a match and what a bag of nerves all you guys must be after that. For those first two sets Andy Murray played some of the ...

Djokovic-Federer: Historic Match

From the moment Rafael Nadal went down, the talk of the men's draw at Wimbledon has been all about the semifinals. That's when Novak Djokovic would meet Roger Federer, and in a s...

Clijsters Ousted in Final Wimbledon

Kim Clijsters walked off Court 3 at Wimbledon with a quick one-handed wave to the crowd after a match she never had a chance to win. There was no grand farewell for Clijsters at th...

Creaky Back Doesn't Stop Federer

A bad back in the second week — as Roger Federer remembers very well — is no guarantee of failure at Wimbledon. Federer won his first Wimbledon title in 2003 after expe...

Djokovic Loses 1st Set, Then Rolls

A day after Lukas Rosol’s sensational performance, another Czech briefly threatened another upset of a top seed under the roof on Centre Court. But defending champion Novak D...

Fish, Baker Win Opening Matches

More than most folks at the All England Club, Mardy Fish and Brian Baker are genuinely happy to be here. There are plenty of perks, like free changeover towels (which cost 25 poun...

Clijsters Wins, But Isner Tumbles

It's an article of faith that the most successful players at Wimbledon are the ones who are the most liquid movers, which would make you think that Jelena Jankovic had good reason ...

10 Best Never to Win a Grand Slam

As the best tennis players in the world hit the slick green (for now, anyway) grass at the All England Club in Wimbledon, it feels like the right time to pose the timeless questi...

6th-Seeded Berdych Upset in Opener

It seemed odd when sixth seed Tomas Berdych’s opening match against Ernests Gulbis was placed on Centre Court; after all, Gulbis—once the shining light of the next gen...

Fish Hopes Heart Problem Behind Him

Mardy Fish was high above Wimbledon, perched on a stool in the players’ restaurant with a panorama of green courts and tennis whites stretched out behind him like a landsca...

Clijsters in Her Final Wimbledon

Kim Clijsters is back at Wimbledon, for only the second time in the past six years—and definitely the last time. The four-time major champion says she'll retire after the U.S...

Murray Finds Peace on Centre Court

Centre Court at Wimbledon is not just a cauldron for Andy Murray. When he visits the club to practise between tournaments, when the place is empty of all but the staff and office...

Looks Like Serena Over Sharapova

Order, rather than the customary chaos, has been the trend on the WTA tour this year. Victoria Azarenka, Maria Sharapova, and Serena Williams have all had their surges, and have al...

Victory Means a Lot to Champion

Maria Sharapova was ahead, and that was the problem. She was up a set and a break on an opponent who appeared to be hopelessly overmatched. She was four games from winning a tourna...

Murray Remains Outsider on Clay

Andy Murray retains the belief that he might one day win the French Open, but the 25-year-old Scot will have to put away his clay-court shoes for another year. Roland Garros has...

Murray Faces Tough Task vs. Ferrer

The view in Paris – and probably further abroad – is that David Ferrer will be too tough for Andy Murray when they meet in the quarter-finals of the French Open on Wedn...

Tsonga Tops Wawrinka in 5 Sets

Only once in his career has Jo-Wilfried Tsonga lost when leading by two sets, and that was to Stanislas Wawrinka at Roland Garros in 2011. He came perilosuly close to repeating his...

Li Na Ousted; Sharapova Survives

Behind the microphone, Li Na sighed. She had no answers, only questions, like the reporters who packed around her, who wondered about the weather and whether she had prepared pro...

Defending Champ Li Na Ousted

Defending champion Li Na was at a loss to explain why she was knocked out by a qualifier in the fourth round of the French Open. Last year, Li became the first player from China to...

Women's Top Seed Azarenka Out

Victoria Azarenka did damage to her racket but had no such success against her opponent. The No. 1 seed at the French Open fell 6-2, 7-6 (4) to 15th-seeded Dominika Cibulkova on a ...

Federer Turns Back Goffin's Challenge

On a day when youth and audacity threatened genius, one moment illuminated Roland Garros above the many others. It arrived a little after 6pm, with the sun aching to crack the mil...

Stosur Curtails Stephens' Run

Becoming a Grand Slam champion can present new and anxiety-inducing challenges and pressures, as Sam Stosur learned after she won the U.S. Open last September. But it also yields m...

Murray Whips Giraldo in 3-Setter

The good news is Andy Murray is in one piece going into the second week of the French Open. The other good news is this most stubborn of Scots has been strengthened by a fire sto...

Youzhny 'SORRI' for Bad Outing

Mikhail Youzhny was having such a bad day in the third round of the French Open that he felt the need to apologize, right on court during the match. The 27th-seeded Russian scrape...

Wozniacki Explodes in Upset Loss

Caroline Wozniacki's slide accelerated when she was dumped out of the French Open in the third round by Estonia's Kaia Kanepi after losing her temper over a controversial line ca...

Upstart Goffin to Face Federer

David Goffin looks like a boy in a sport increasingly populated by older men. But he is in elite, experienced company now in the round of 16 of the French Open. Goffin, a slender...

American Teen Stephens Advances

Sloane Stephens of the United States discovered that nerves are natural on a big stage and shrugged them off Friday in a 6-3, 6-2 victory in the French Open over Mathilde Johanss...

Kuznetsova Shows She's Back Again

If you were present when Svetlana Kuznetsova won the French Open in 2009, on a sunshot day when the jam-packed Court Philippe Chatrier resembled a bowl of multi-colored gumdrops,...

American Teen, Sharapova Advance

American teen Sloane Stephens and Maria Sharapova advanced on Friday, while Ana Ivanovic lost in the third round of the French Open. Stephens reached the fourth round by beating M...

After 6 Years Off, Baker Advances

Brian Baker’s family and friends had waited years to see him play at the French Open—nine years, to be exact, since he made the boy’s final in 2003. They weren&...

American Women Off to 10-0 Start

Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer moved into the second round of the French Open without mishap. No surprise there, but how about six American women? Without getting carried away,...

Fish Recovering From Heart Surgery

For weeks, Mardy Fish was afraid to close his eyes and fall asleep, living his own terrifying version of A Nightmare on Elm Street. Fish would awake from a deep slumber with his he...