Patricia Maria Tig Is Back On Court With A New Attitude

WASHINGTON, September 13, 2020 (by Michael Dickens)

When Patricia Maria Tig returned to the WTA Tour in July of 2019 after giving birth to a baby daughter nine months earlier, she said she missed tennis. In time, not only did the native of Bucharest, Romania, recapture her skill level. She also came back with a new attitude.

“I’m trying to enjoy every moment of it,” Tig, whose ranking peaked at No. 83 in 2017, told the WTA website. “I hope more mothers will play, because women need to see that this is not something impossible to do. 

“I don’t feel inferior to any player. I know that if I go on the court and give my best, I can win the match, too,” she said.

Recently, Tig, now 26 and ranked 88th in the world, earned her first Grand Slam main draw victory. It came in the first round of the US Open, when she beat No. 142 Kurumi Nara of Japan, 6-0, 6-1. She was one of nine moms in the women’s singles draw.

After Tig was knocked out in the second round by 18th seed Donna Vekic from Croatia, 6-2, 6-1, she was headed off to Istanbul, Turkey, some 5,000 miles and an ocean away, reunited with both her husband and coach, Razvan Sabau, and her nearly-two-year-old daughter, Sofia.

“We are so happy together here,” said Tig during a Zoom chat Saturday evening with Tennis TourTalk and a reporter for the WTA website. “I wished for Sofia to be here with us. … I missed her very much. … I think she’s given us such good energy.”

Indeed, she has, and it’s at the TEB BNP Paribas Tennis Championships Istanbul this week that Tig has rediscovered herself during her run up to Sunday’s final against 272nd-ranked Canadian qualifier Eugenie Bouchard of Canada – and a big credit goes to Sofia. The elder Tig has strung together four victories, against Olga Danilovic, Misaki Doi, Rebecca Peterson and Tereza Martincova, to reach her first WTA tour-level final of the year.

Tig hopes she can be a positive role model for others to follow her path in combining a tennis career with motherhood. She said: “There are many, many moms right now and I hope it’ll be more in the next years.

“I think it’s very satisfying that you can do not only one thing – not only taking care of your baby – but to do what your passion is. I hope we’ll see other women deciding to have babies and still play. I am not only a different player but a different person. It gives you strength and only the best energy that you can take from your baby.”

Naomi Osaka brought seven masks to the US Open

Harry Connick Jr, Branford Marsalis to perform before men’s final

Singer Harry Connick, Jr. and jazz saxophonist Branford Marsalis, will perform “America the Beautiful” in Arthur Ashe Stadium prior to the 2020 US Open men’s singles championship Sunday afternoon (4 p.m. Eastern, 9 p.m. London, 10 p.m. Central European). The performance will air live on ESPN as part of the network’s presentation of the conclusion of the US Open, the first global sporting event to be held during the current world pandemic.

It’s the third time Connick will perform “America the Beautiful” at the US Open, following performances in 2001 and 2008, and it is the first performance at the US Open by Marsalis.

“We overcame many challenges and obstacles to reach this point and are incredibly appreciative we were able to showcase our sport at the highest level to the world,” said Patrick Galbraith, USTA Chairman of the Board and President in a statement. “What’s sure to be a stirring performance by Harry and Branford will be a fitting capstone on this historic achievement.”

When Roger Met Helen

Serena Williams out of Italian Open

On Saturday, World No. 9 Serena Williams withdrew from the Internazionali BNL d’Italia due to an Achilles injury.

“I regretfully must withdraw from the Internazionali BNL d’Italia due to an Achilles strain,” Williams said in a statement that was published by the WTA website. “I’m so humbled by the continuous support from my fans in Rome and I look forward to making my return soon.”

Williams has won the Rome title four times and on Thursday lost in the semifinals of the US Open to Victoria Azarenka in three sets.

There are six Top 10 players among the women’s field in Rome. Top seed is World No. 2 Simona Halep.

The quote – Victoria Azarenka

During her post-match virtual interview, Victoria Azarenka was asked if she ever had doubts she would be able to reach another Grand Slam final since he last one was seven years ago. She said:

“If I put my mind into doing my job, and I decide that I’m going to go for it, I don’t necessarily think that I’m not going to be able to reach something. Do I have doubts? I’m a human being that has doubts, that has fears, that has different kinds of emotion which are so normal. It’s just the difference that those emotions are not going to stop me from doing what I’m going to do. I think that sometimes separates people who are going after their dreams and able to succeed rather than being inactive.

“In that way, my belief comes a little bit before the results. I’ve said it many times, and I’m going to continue to say that, because it’s very, very true. That’s what it is.”

Take it all in, Naomi