Five-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams' (11) quest to take the French Open, ended in quarter final competition against 17 year old Nicole Vaidisova (16) of the Czech Republic. 6-7(5) 6-2 6-3.
The highest ranking American woman to compete in the French Open, Venus was also:
the sole American, man or woman, to make it to week two of competition the oldest female quarterfinalist, at 25, and... the last American standing!
"Obviously I'm disappointed," Williams said. "I would have loved to have done better." (photo and quote - AP)
In Nicole Vaidisova, Venus was faced with her own reflection less than 10 years ago... young, hungry and determined.
One consolation, Vaidisova is no young tennis wallflower. She defeated #1 seed Amelie Mauresmo 6-7 (5) 6-1 6-2 earlier on in the Open. So, while Venus was playing with an elbow injury, only played nine matches going into the Open AND while clay courts are her least favorite surface, Vaidisova earned the victory.
"I just kept fighting, you know, getting as many balls back as I could, try to move her around, " Vaidisova said. "I kept hanging in there even though I lost the first set." (photo and quote - AP)
In other Williams news, sister Serena, who has played just four matches in the last eight months, chose not to play at all due to a chronic left knee injury.
So, Vloggercon is just a stone's throw from today. What's a vlog and why would I mention it on SportyGals, you ask?
Well...a vlog is basically a video blog. You know, a way to spice things up a little.
Ok, so what! I get a little excited about little tech enhancements.
So, like I was saying...I plan to incorporate vlog entries into the SportyGals blog, but I'm quite the newbie at this vlog thing, so I'm going to Vloggercon. Sounds kind of like a superhero town or something.
Hopefully, you will soon have access to cool video of some of the events, acitivies and teams I like to cover.
That said, the weekend of June 9, my life will be devoted to Vloggercon and all things vlog-like. Check out their promos. Let's hope I learn something!
I’ve never been to China, but it is on my list of future destinations. And the Women’s World Cup finals will occur on my birthday. So, sounds like I’ve got three great events to look forward to in 2007.
I attended my first Women’s World Cup in 1999. I had no
idea, when I convinced a group of friends to go, just how amazing the games
would be. I wasn’t the only one turned on to soccer. Soon after, the 2000
Summer Olympics and the founding of the WUSA (Women’s United Soccer
Association) profession women’s soccer league, in 2001, fueled my newly
acquired taste for women’s soccer…and excited thousands of girls and women, who
were thrilled to be reflected on the field. I personally became a season ticket holder
the San Jose CyberRays, and looked forward to each and every home game.
Needless to say, I was pretty disappointed when the league folded in 2003, due
to lack of financial backing.
There was talk of a relaunch of women’s professional soccer,
back in 2004 and 2005, with the founding of the Women’s Soccer Initiative, Inc.... I haven’t heard anything lately.
is the Today's Show headline for the release of Liz Allison's, "The Girl's Guide to Nascar."
Liz Allison, wife of the late NASCAR driver Davey Allison,
tackles the ins and outs of
NASCAR — explaining the official point and flag
systems, regulations on cars, and how drivers make it to the starting (and
She also offers helpful tips to female fans on traveling to and from race
events and surviving an entire race weekend with kids, and shares recipes for
throwing a great NASCAR viewing party.
See the Today Show page for book excerpts. Check out
NASCAR for more NASCAR 101.
Just as San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales and US Soccer team member Brandi Chastain announce that her Bay Area Women's Sports Initiative will be getting some pretty good support from the city, it is reported that Chastain will be cut from the team for being too old.
Amazing considering I remember Michelle Akers bringing great experience, skills and heart to the team in her forties, but hey, I'm not the coach.
The team's current coach, Greg Ryan, replaced April Heinrichs earlier this year.
In an MSNBC article, Ryan says, “What I’m looking for in future defenders are qualities that
she doesn’t possess at this point in her career.”
In the SF Chronicle Chastain responds, "I'd like to be given a chance to be evaluated against
the people who have been afforded the opportunity. If I don't stack up, then I
don't, and at least I know. I've got a clear head about me."
last game was Dec. 6, 2004 against Mexico at Carson, Calif., the final
stop in the 10-game farewell exhibition tour for Hamm, Foudy and
Fawcett. Chastain was not invited to the camp for the Algarve Cup in
Portugal in March, although it’s not unusual for veterans to miss that
tournament. Her absence became notable when she wasn’t invited to this
week’s camp, which precedes the team’s first domestic game this year.
Our first ride with a 50Km from Pienza...It's a loop ride to Montopulciano to Monticcheiello then back to Pienza.
The picture was our first stop at Sant'Anna In Camprena monastery...This is where they filmed "The English Patient"...It was beautiful there...We did one mishap when Roena was trying to clip in...didn't quite made it and started to tip over...at the perfect moment that Pauline rode by...and yes, she knocked Pauline over to the next lane...Pauline who skillfully tuck into a roll...as the the same time a car was coming over hill toward her...Imagine us yelling..hurry up and get up..a car is coming...Otherwise, it was a nice ride along the rolling hills...
Ok, the last 1.5 miles back to Pienza was a killer... It was uphill like going up to skyline...this is after we rode about 35 miles already...We were all beat except for Susannah who decided to stay in the last town for a hr forsomesightseeing then caught up to us and arrived back in town 15 minutes after we did...She is ready to go down the hill and do it again...
PS. For those who is wonder who is laying in the picture...that's Pauline..who is taking a power nap...since didn't get in her 10 hrs of sleep in the night before...
Of her performance, Danica said, ``I made a hell of a point for anybody. I came through the
pack twice.'' And she did! So why Danica, why the bikini shoots?!
One of my first blog posts was about the issue of using sex to sell women's sports. So when I started looking at the coverage on Danica Patrick, it was like staring at an issue that probably won't disappear in the near future.
Schizophrenia...on... While I’m thrilled that Danica Patrick
is excelling in the male-dominated world of auto racing, the use of sex to
market her is a bit bothersome. She posed in bikinis for men's magazines prior to the race to get some air time. I would think having David Letterman as team co-owner would open quite a few door...no?
Some would say, hey, if it advances women in sports and beefs up coverage, it's all for the greater good. I'm a PR person and I still wouldn't want to go there. It's hard enough for many female athletes to be taken seriously as it is.
Danica is talented. No doubt. She has been racing since she was a kid. She kicks A** on the track at more than 200 mph! And,
despite a couple of rookie mistakes, she still managed to finish fourth Sunday,
the strongest showing for a woman in the Indy 500’s race's 89-year history.
Patrick took over the lead from lap 172 to 194 of the 200-lap race, but was eventually beat by Dan Wheldon who, according to AP sports writer Paul Newberry,
has been the strongest driver on the circuit all year, winning for the fourth
time in five races.
But I guess talent just isn't enough.
Sullivan of The Buffalo News and Kevin Blackistone of The Dallas Morning News have done a pretty good job of addressing the
hypocrisy and annoyance of appearance carrying more weight than ability and performance. Not an issue in men's sports.
Newberry says, "Patrick has taken a major step toward shattering the gender barrier for
Considering the use of sex to sell, I just hope it's the barrier above and not the barrier below.
...Imagine being Farkhondeh Sadegh, a graphic designer, and Laleh
Keshavarz, a dentist (sorry - no photos of the climbers)the two Iranian women who earned this title Monday morning. They reached the summit, together with six Iranian men, all of whom were among a 21-member Iranian team that included seven women. Their success marked the end of a 10-week
expedition where they survived bad weather and an avalanche that injured some of the
Could you image climbing this?!
Another first belongs to Mona
Mulepati, who led a three-member team to become the first non-Sherpa woman from Nepal to reach
the top of the world. She is Newar, Kathmandu's main
ethnic group. This is apparently a big deal because, while Sherpa men have
gotten used to the idea of assisting Sherpa women in scaling Mount Everest, they're not exactly
interested in more local competition. So I’ve heard.
A couple of Mount Everest tidbits
Junko Tabai of Japan was the first woman to scale Everest...30 years ago.
Fewer than 100 women in the world have climbed Everest.
Mount Everest is actually called Sagarmatha, which means “goddess of the sky”
I don’t know if you’ve ever done 600 miles in 7 days, but
only a select few do it for fun. Everyone else does it when they really believe
in a cause.
Where will the money go?
services such as: - HIV
educational campaigns and needle exchange
such as: - a
nationwide hotline - outreach programs - housing
assistance - financial
Please consider putting your support behind Cathleen in her
efforts to make a difference. My grandmother died of AIDs at the age of 60 in
the days of unscreened transfusions. No one should have to suffer and die because
of this disease…at any age, for any reason.
Want to know where women’s sports is headed? The Buffalo
News, yeah I’d never heard of the pub either, but they recently did an article
on women’s professional sports over the past 5+ years. The article opens up
with mention that the WNBA is celebrating its 9th season. For me the
WNBA’s celebration is a marker for when the NBA helped put the ABL out of
business. I was a major fan and season ticket holder of the San Jose Lasers.
Sheri Sam, Jennifer Azzi, Kedra Holland-Corn. The fan appreciation events and awesome games – without
the arrogance, brawls and juvenile fans. I had never been a basketball fan
prior to the ABL. They brought the women’s Olympic team, and them some, into my
life. Those who would like to reminisce can check out the San Jose Lasers Observer. Needless to say I was beyond disappointed when the league folded.
came the World Cup and the San Jose CyberRays. Women’s soccer was HOT! Again, I
became a row 6, just off center line season ticket holder. An incredible
opportunity to watch Olympic athletes like fellow SCU alum Brandi Chastain, the
Brazilians Katia and Sisi... Every game was packed with incredibly
talented, high-quality athletes who played like they really wanted to be there.
Unfortunately, the WUSA wasn’t quite able to continue to fund the team.
Looking forward, Tonya Antonucci, CEO of the Women’s Soccer Initiative, Inc. is apparently heading up a
relaunch effort. The plan is to have the WUSA back in action by 2006. I am
among the many who hope that this time around, the business practice will match
the success of the talented athletes who are waiting to get back on the field.
The empowerment of women through sports seems to be a nice
little trend in some Muslim nations these days.
Yemen, set near Saudia Arabia and Oman,
recently played host to 33 nations participating in the 3rd Asian
Conference on Women in Sports. The theme of the conference was the empowerment
of women through participation in sports and physical education. The Yemeni
government, which seems to be a strong supporter of this initiative, even plans
to contract female coaches to train Yemenis and improve women’s sports in the
tiny nation. The Asian Working Group plans to invite women from Yemen to Japan for
training on women and sports, so that they can return home and use sports as a way to empower women in their own country. The event
included delegates from Qatar, India and Singapore.
Prime Minister Ba-Jammkal stated, “We in Yemen are looking for all ways to eliminate female oppression and sports is one of
the things that will help women exert their rights.”
This year organizers of the “Run for Fun” expect to attract
more than 20,000 participants. Women from all over Morocco and several other countries are expected to participate. This year’s race, the
7th “Run for Fun,” just happens to coincide with Who knew?!
I was trying to figure out what exciting things I could get into this weekend when I happened upon an article AND received a call that reminded me of my first kayaking experience. Hmmm. Must mean something.
While I don't expect to join the ranks of the athletes I watched during the Olympic team trials at Lake Merritt, I can appreciate the time, dedication, sacrifice and passion these and other Olympic-bound athletes must have their sport. I personally like to divide my time and passion among numerous activities. Thinking about trying it out? Paddling.net is a decent site for finding basic information.
I have an unusually active bunch of friends. If it's Summer or Fall we're cycling, swimming, kayaking, mountain biking or climbing...Winter, we're snowboarding and skiing...
Thu has had orthoscopic surgery on both knees (hockey), Jen has a couple of marathons under her belt and some of us have a few triathlons to our credit.
I'm not exactly feeling very athletic as I'm in the midst of sipping on an iced mocha right about now, so I've chosen to let you know a little something about my friend Nishat. She will be next to put a marathon under her belt while raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society this September.
So far she's logged more than 300 miles all around the Bay Area (NoCal), consumed 100 gallons of gatorade, chowed on 20 lbs of pasta (angel hair only of course ;-)), and used 50 lbs of ice for her sore muscles...all in the name of raising at least $3,700 for leukemia and lymphoma research.
WANT TO CONTRIBUTE?
If you're interested in helping Nishat meet or exceed her goal, please feel free to contact her directly. She's a great person, pursing a difficult first time marathon to raise money for those who are looking for a cure. You're invited to donate as little as $1/mile!
All donations are 100% tax-deductible. For more info please visit her training page.
Bay Area Velo Girls The San Francisco Bay Area's only road cycling club
exclusively for girls and women. Voted Best Cycling Club in the CitySports Magazine, 2004 and Best of the Bay Reader's Poll 2002, 2003, and 2004!
AIDS/LifeCycle More than 1,900 cyclists and volunteer "roadies" are participating in this 7-day, 585-mile bicycle ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles. They're expected to raise more than $5 million for the HIV/AIDS-related services.