US OPEN 2005 Roger Federer Puts An End
To Andre Agassi’s Streak
Story by Roger Webster
Photos by Diane Dunne
E just lost his mojo and crashed, so tennis idol Andy Roddick bombed out of his first match at the US Tennis Open. Everyone thought the men’s tournament interest was over. Fortunately, so many unexpected events followed that the men’s matches developed into exciting struggles of final point matches.
Riding on Roddick’s coattails, the huge favorite Rafael Nadal, from Spain, was closely defeated by local boy James Blake. Blake continued this momentum by defeating Tommy Robredo (also from Spain) in another tight, equally paired match.
It took the genius-osity of Andre Agassi to halt Blake’s roll in a breathtaking match that went on until 1:15 a.m. And then in the finals, the world’s most brilliant tennis star, Roger Federer, put an end to Andre’s winning streak.
The women’s side was equally thrilling, as the Williams sisters clashed head on early in the tournament with Venus trampling her little sister. The Williams bring such show biz to the games; unusual circumstances always surround them.
Serena wore borrowed $40,000 diamond earrings. One fell off during play and she nonchalantly kicked it aside.
Venus’ tennis outfit was a disco dress of orchid studded with gold sequins. Not quite the attire for Wimbledon, but at the US Open anything goes.
Pretty Kim Clijsters of Belgium finally won the women’s trophy, firmly tromping Maria Sharapova of Russia and Mary Pierce of France along the way.
Jim Carey came early on in the tournament, along with NBA star Kevin Garnett and actor Taye Diggs.
Other boldface names included Bo Diddley who sang the opening night hymn, Ben Vereen, Grammy winner John Mayer, comedian Chris Rock, Rosie Perez, the Baldwin boys Alex and Stephen, John Lithgow, former NFL coach John Madden, NY Yankee Alex Rodriguez, Regis Philbin, and Andre Leon Talley, who hid out in Donald Trump’s upper level private box while his boss Anna Wintour sat front and center in the President’s Box wearing her signature sunglasses at 11 p.m.
As countdown to the finals approached, the stadium was bouncing with stars. Tony Bennett, Robin Williams in one sneaker with his right foot in a gray felt slipper, Star Jones, Spike Lee, Lance Armstrong, Dustin Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, Giorgio Armani, Richard Branson, Christie Brinkley, Lauren Bush, Judd Hirsch, Jason Lewis, James Taylor and his son Ben, Stanley Tucci, and the Ralph, Ricky, David and Dylan Lauren all enjoyed the stunning tennis.
The weather was absolutely perfect. New attendance records were set as approximately 660,000 people attended the two-week tournament—the highest attendance for any annual sporting event in the world.