2019 U.S. Open: Champions Who Lost Their Titles

Sara Boddie, Editorial Board

     The U.S. Open began as an exclusive men’s singles and doubles tournament, held in Newport, Rhode Island. Now, over 700,000 fans enter the gates at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center to enjoy a two-week sports and entertainment extravaganza, held in Flushing, New York. The tournament consists of five primary championships: men’s and women’s singles, men’s and women’s doubles, and mixed doubles. The tournament also includes events for seniors, juniors, and wheelchair players. Rafeal Nadal dominated the men’s single division while Bianca Andreescu won the women’s singles, although two big names are missing from the champion titles: Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic.Image result for 2019 us tennis open

     Serena Williams, a 23 time Grand Slam champion, fails to defend her title at this years U.S. open. Nearly everyone in the crowd expected Williams walk out with a victory against Bianca Andreescu, the talented yet inexperienced 19 year old Canadian, little known outside her tennis circle before the win. Playing nearly a flawless game, Andreescu surprised the world as Serena Williams struggles to beat the 19 year old who simply brought too much game. However, during the second set, the young Canadian clamped down as she served twice for the match. She lost both games, giving Williams and the crowd hope for the great champion to bring home the win. But after taking a deep breathe, Andreescu striked a catapulting forehand winner that Williams could only watch fly by.

     “I believe I could have played better,” she said. “I believe I could have done more. I believe I could have just been more Serena today. I honestly don’t think Serena showed up. I have to kind of figure out how to get her to show up in Grand Slam finals.” She knew this wouldn’t be the end of her career of victories.

     Djokovic entered the U.S. Open as the No. 1 seed and defending champion, having won four of the five previous Grand Slam tournaments. It seemed as if there was a very short list of opponents who could stop him from winning his 17th major title. Down two sets and a break, Djokovic shook his head as he approached the chair umpire, informing the official he would be unable to continue to compete. His aching left shoulder forced him to retire during the third set, drawing heavy “boos” from the crowd.

     “I’m sorry for the crowd,” said Djokovic, who remains — for now — four Grand Slam titles shy of Roger Federer’s record 20. “Obviously they came to see a full match, and [it] just wasn’t meant to be. I mean, a lot of people didn’t know what’s happening, so you cannot blame them.” The frustrations from the crowd most likely came because they wanted to see the match play out, but the broadcasters noted that Djokovic is historically one of the ultimate competitors in the game and would have continued if he was able to. The fans booed the Wimbledon champion as he packed up his things, flashing a sarcastic thumbs up to the crowd.