As we turn the calendar on 2010, here are some of the important figures that defined the past 12 months, making 2010 one of the most interesting and influential years in the history of American tennis:
23,600,000 – Amount in US dollars; prize money distributed at the 2010 US Open – a record – including $950,000 earned in Olympus US Open Series bonus prize money.
18,000,000 – As of December 2010, USTA Serves has accounted for 18 million man hours of mentoring, tutoring and nutritional guidance to more than 170,000 children across the country through donations. Not just a clever name, the program quite literally serves the USTA as the chief not-for-profit entity dedicated to improving the quality of life among our nation’s youth and for those with disabilities. It was a busy banner year in 2010 for "Serves," with a new Executive Director (Deborah Slaner Larkin) and President (Mary Carillo) named and working partnerships with celebrity advocates such as Usher forged.
2,800,000 – Hours of live streaming viewed by fans logging onto USOpen.org to watch the 2010 US Open; the record-setting figure is an 11-percent increase over viewership in 2009.
712,976 – Recorded attendance for the 2010 US Open, with fans bustling through the gates each day of the tournament regardless of triple-digit temperatures in the first week and torrential downpours during Finals weekend. Despite the weather, new records were set in both merchandise and food and beverage sales.
673,358 – In its second year, the Official US Open iPhone App was downloaded and/or updated 673,358 times - a 53 percent increase from its debut in 2009 - with USOpen.org seeing record mobile traffic across its mobile-friendly website (m.usopen.org) and the official iPhone App, with more than 30 million page views, a 44 percent increase over 2009.
93,000 – Estimated number of USTA Leagues players moved to a higher NTRP level in 2010, as part of a widespread move to make the local league experiences better and foster competition.
60,000 – Estimated number of official 2010 US Open Wilson tennis balls used during the US Open, which in turn were reused for National Tennis Center programming and then donated to community/youth programs. Also following the Open, approximately 20,000 Wilson tennis ball cans were recycled as part of the US Open’s ongoing and comprehensive Green Initiatives.
50,000 – Number of active participants within USTA.com’s "Find A Partner" application, a national database designed and dedicated to matching up tennis players across America according to skill level, proximity, age and several other customizable factors. The figure is a 25-percent increase from the estimated 40,000 that used the application in 2009.
19,000 – Amount in US dollars; Purse won by 18-year-old American Jack Sock for losing his 2010 US Open first round match to Switzerland’s Marco Chiudinelli. In a little over two hours, Sock had almost quadrupled his career earnings to date ($26,705 to date). With a strong showing against Chiudinelli and some added coin in pocket, Sock rallied to win the 2010 Boys’ Singles title in the second week to cap off a memorable stay in Queens.
3,017 – Miles traveled by USTA Caribbean to the 2010 Jr. Team Tennis National Championships in Surprise, Ariz. – the greatest distance covered by any section to participate in the event. The "La Rambia" team from Ponce, Puerto Rico would make their many hours of back-and-forth flying count by taking the 14 & Under Intermediate Division title in a hard-fought final against USTA Eastern.
401 – Current match winning streak for five-time defending US Open wheelchair champion Esther Vergeer. In addition to being undefeated since January 2003, Vergeer finished as the top-ranked women’s wheelchair player in the world for an unprecedented 12th straight year.
312 – Percent increase in US Open fan followers on the official US Open Championships Facebook page from 2009 to 2010. Fanship surpassed the 200,000 mark shortly before the end of the tournament and those who "liked" the official page were treated to match and weather alerts, expert picks and exclusive shop opportunities – just a few prime examples of the content provided year-round via the USTA’s social network initiatives.
147 – Miles per hour on the fastest recorded serve at the 2010 US Open, off the racquet of American baseline bomber Taylor Dent. The 29-year-old fan favorite from Bradenton, Fla. announced his retirement from the game in November, but not before launching up some record strikes at both the 2010 French Open (149 MPH) and 2010 Wimbledon (148 MPH). Dent leaves the game with 4 ATP singles crowns to his credit and over $2.5 million (US) in career earnings.
137 – College tennis teams represented at the 2010 USTA Tennis On Campus National Championships and the Spring and Fall Invitationals. 2010 marked the first Fall Invitational in TOC history, held in North Little Rock, Ark. The University of Alabama Club Tennis Team narrowly defeated the University of Maryland Club Tennis Team, 22-20, to claim the inaugural title.
113 – Record setting amount of aces served by American John Isner during his epic second round battle with Frenchman Nicolas Mahut at the 2010 Championships at Wimbledon. Isner served his 79th ace to take the final set to 39–38, surpassing Ivo Karlovic's 78 aces in a September 2009 Davis Cup match against Radek Štepánek. Mahut would also surpass Karlovic with 103 aces of his own. Without the escape route of a fifth-set tiebreaker, the marathon match set several additional all-time tennis records, including:
- Longest match (11 hours, 5 minutes)
- Longest set (the fifth set required 8 hours, 11 minutes)
- Most games in a set (138 in the fifth set)
- Most games in a match (183)
- Total aces in a match (Mahut's 103 aces, the second highest number by a player in a match, brought the total to 216)
- Consecutive service games held (168: 84 for each player)
- Most points scored in a tennis match (502, by Mahut)
67 – Career ATP doubles titles now claimed by the Bryans – Bob and Mike – the new all-time record as of 2010. The California-born brothers broke the previous mark of 61 set by the duo of Mark Woodforde and Todd Woodbridge at the 2010 Farmers Classic in Los Angeles, their 100th career ATP championship match as a tandem. Appropriate in a year in which they toppled a longtime record held by a pair of Australians, the Bryans would also take both the Australian Open and US Open men’s doubles titles in 2010.
49 – Consecutive weeks as the No. 1 ranked player in the world for Serena Williams of the United States by the WTA, in a streak that spanned from November 2, 2009 to October 10, 2010. Williams was forced to miss the 2010 US Open and the November Fed Cup tie in San Diego due to a nagging foot injury, in effect stopping the streak. Only Dinara Safina (25 weeks) had a streak half as long in 2009 and just three streaks have been lengthier since the turn of the millennium – one belonging to Williams herself, when she held top ranking for 57 straight weeks from 2002-03.
42 – Community Tennis Associations (CTA) accounted for in Flushing Meadows during the 2010 US Open to soak in the sights and sounds of a Grand Slam tournament. The sample covered a cross-section of over 1,000 CTAs across the United States – from California (Morgan Hill Tennis Club) to Connecticut (Cornwall CTA in Cornwall Bridge, Conn.), or from Washington (Jefferson County CTA in Port Townsend, Wash.) to South Florida (The Greater Miami Tennis & Education Foundation), with each CTA representing volunteerism towards grassroots success, building quality programs at the local level. The associations work to coordinate and maintain tennis programs and services, guaranteeing that they are open and accessible to all.
40 – Jim Courier becomes the 40th Davis Cup captain in October 2010, replacing ten-year incumbent Patrick McEnroe after the latter resigned at the 2010 US Open. In Davis Cup competition as a player, Courier helped the United States win the Davis Cup in 1992 and 1995, compiling a 16-10 record in singles and a 1-0 record in doubles. Courier will make his debut as captain in March 2011, as the United States heads to the clay courts of Santiago for their first round tilt with Chile.
33 – Sets played in a month by American junior Lauren Davis (of which she won 32) en route to winning the Girls 18s singles championship at the 2010 Dunlop Orange Bowl and earning a 2011 Australian Open wild card – an impressive performance and workload for a junior player, with 21 matches in 28 days. The Ohio native won 25 sets in a row and had won her two previous junior tournaments before being forced into a three-set thriller in the Orange Bowl final with fellow American Grace Min. Two days after the tournament, Davis would travel from Key Biscayne to Atlanta and eventually best 2010 US Fed Cup team member CoCo Vandeweghe in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2 to earn the bid to Melbourne.
30 – Weight in pounds lost by American Mardy Fish, at the behest of his wife, Stacey, during his 2010 resurgence. The 29-year-old Minnesotan had dropped to 55th in the world ATP rankings before a new commitment to diet and training led to an injury-free resurgence in 2010, winning ATP titles in Newport and Atlanta, a strong showing in Cincinnati (taking Roger Federer to the limit in three sets, featuring two tiebreaks) and a Round of 16 appearance at the 2010 US Open. At a svelte 170 lbs., Fish currently sits at No. 16 in the ATP singles rankings, a personal best.
28 – Percentage of player challenges overturned during the 2010 US Open. Out of 611 calls for Hawk Eye replay during the two-week extravaganza, just 172 were successful in altering a disputed point. In 2009, just 164 calls were reversed out of 580 challenges, or… 28-percent. In the season’s most high profile event, featuring the top tennis players in the world, the statistics don’t lie: USTA Officials are extremely efficient at calling it between the lines.
25 – Although there was no chance of another 113-ace effort at the 2010 US Open (where tiebreaker rules apply in every set), John Isner’s average of 25 aces per match led all players in the men’s draw. Despite the power output, Isner would drop a four-setter to eventual semifinalist Mikhail Youzhny in the third round.
20 – Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki was the youngest No. 1 seed at the US Open at age 20 since the 2005 Open, when Maria Sharapova held top ranking as an 18-year-old. Unfortunately for the current World No. 1, she was not able to recapture the 2009 magic that led her to a US Open final – she would be upset by No. 7 seed Vera Zvonareva in the semifinals, preventing a Wozniacki/Kim Clijsters rematch.
17 - Regional sections that represent the USTA, all of which continue to build and develop tennis across the country.
16 – Roger Federer defeats Andy Murray in the 2010 Australian Open men’s final to capture his 16th Grand Slam singles crown, adding to his unprecedented total. Federer finished no worse than the quarterfinals in all four majors during the year, extending that streak to 26 straight Grand Slams when he was knocked out in the third round of the 2004 French Open.
10 – The 10 and Under Tennis revolution begins, as the ITF and USTA announce a ground-breaking rule change for youth tennis. Beginning on January 1, 2012, new rules require that sanctioned 10-and-under tournaments must be played using slower-moving and lower-bouncing balls, on smaller courts and utilizing shorter, lighter racquets. The rule change signifies the emergence of the QuickStart play format as an integral part of the development of young players. The scaled-down equipment and smaller playing court will allow kids to rally and play the game early on, increasing the likelihood that kids will return to the court and continue to improve.
8 – By winning the 2010 US Open, Belgium’s Kim Clijsters becomes the eighth woman to repeat as US Open champion in consecutive years in the Open Era, joining Margaret Court, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navrátilová (who did it twice), Steffi Graf (twice), Monica Seles and Venus Williams. The 2010 win would be Clijsters third overall US Open crown, and like in 2009, Clijsters would drop only two sets during her seven-match championship run.
7 – Years since a defending US Open men’s champion had been absent from the draw in the following year, which is what happened to Juan Martin del Potro in 2010 as he spent most of the season rehabbing a wrist injury suffered in January (In 2003, Pete Sampras retired from professional tennis after winning his 14th and final Grand Slam). The up-and-coming Argentinean would also miss the French Open and Wimbledon in what was a lost year.
3 – When World No. 1 Rafael Nadal finally captured the elusive US Open to complete his career Grand Slam, it capped what was by far his finest year as a professional – with victories at Roland Garros and Wimbledon in addition to a crown in Queens, it was the first time in the young Spaniard’s brilliant career that he won three Grand Slams in a calendar year. Nadal also became the third player in tennis history to complete the Career "Golden" Slam in singles play (all four majors plus an Olympic gold medal), joining Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf.
To round out the Rafa trifecta, his to-date career earnings of over $37 million (US) currently ranks third all-time behind Pete Sampras ($43 million) and über-rival Roger Federer ($61 million).
2 – The 2nd annual "Tennis Night in America" saw a Williams sister take the Billie Jean King Cup for the second straight year, as Venus Williams upended Kim Clijsters inside a raucous Madison Square Garden (Serena would upend elder sister Venus in the inaugural event in 2009). Like the year before, the tournament featured a four-woman format and required two wins in the same night to take the cup.
It was also the second time TNIA was the kickoff to Youth Registration events and sign-up drives for Spring and Summer youth programs, the most visible being the 2nd annual TNIA/Youth Registration jamboree at the Midtown Tennis Club (as seen on HBO and ESPN2) in Chicago, Ill. – aka, "The Second City." In 2011, Tennis Night in America returns to Madison Square Garden on Feb. 28 with a lineup of legends on the card: TNIA spokesman Pete Sampras will take on long-time rival Andre Agassi in a three-set bout, while John McEnroe and Ivan Lendl face off in a battle of arguably the two best players from the 1980’s.
1 – 2010 was a year of firsts in several respects relating the world of tennis:
In his first US Open Final, Rafael Nadal wins his first US Open title, dropping just one set (in the men’s final vs. Novak Djokovic) along the way.
In winning the 2010 US Open, Kim Clijsters took home the No. 1 all-time purse in women’s sports history, earning a cool $2.2 million (US).
The 2009 and 2010 US Open tournaments marked the first time that an American men’s singles player did not advance to at least the quarterfinal round in back-to-back years in New York during the Open Era, and is the first two-year drought at any hard court Grand Slam for the United States.
Last year was the first time in his career that Roger Federer had lost a US Open Final when he lost a five-set classic to Juan Martin del Potro. Yet as bad as that defeat would sting "The Maestro," he could always fall back on the fact that he had never lost in a US Open semifinal – that is until Novak Djokovic fought back two match points to upset Federer in the semis, 5-7, 6-1, 5-7, 6-2, 7-5. Federer had previously been 6-0 in career US Open semifinal matches.
It was the first time that the QuickStart Tennis play format was featured on a show court during the US Open, with a live demo presented inside Louis Armstrong Stadium (it was originally scheduled for Arthur Ashe Stadium and a live broadcast on The Tennis Channel, but was moved due to time constraints).
Francesca Schiavone became the first Italian woman – Open Era or otherwise – to win the French Open, beating Australian Samantha Stosur in straight sets. It was also the first and only time Schiavone has advanced past the quarterfinal round in any Grand Slam appearance in her 10+ year career.
Still looking for his first win at a Grand Slam tournament, Andy Murray can take pride in winning his first Olympus US Open Series title in 2010 after finishing second in 2008 & 2009. Caroline Wozniacki took home the women’s OUSOS title, picking up victories in Montreal and New Haven and amassing a OUSOS-leading 185 points.
There was only one walkover in either the men’s or women’s singles draw at the 2010 US Open, with Germany’s Andrea Petkovic awarded a third round victory over China’s Shuai Peng.
For the first time ever, both the 2010 US Open men’s and women’s finals were streamed live on USOpen.org in 3D.