RODDICK-GIMELSTOB PUT ON A SHOW — Props to the USTA for the idea to get Justin Gimelstob to interview Andy Roddick on-court after their match Tuesday night at the US Open. Gimelstob is doing work for host broadcaster USA Network and is making the transition to tennis broadcaster as he competes in his last US Open (though he says he needs to play a few more events before the season ends to qualify for the ATP retirement program, with three more protected rankings at his disposal to get into draws). “It’s hard enough to play at this level when I was healthy,” said Gimelstob who has suffered through back (among other) injuries late in his career. “I just can’t really compete with these guys on a week-in and week-out basis.” Roddick and Gimelstob took it to another level after leaving the court by doing a rare dual-player post-match conference, taking the mike together to address the assembled media. “One good stat I have is 5-0 in five-set matches here at the US Open,” Gimelstob said. “I’m proud of that considering I usually cramp in the second set.” Roddick added, “I was going to say.” Gimelstob went on, “Usually what I do when I get up two sets to love is I tank the third and fourth and have just enough energy to hang on in the fifth.” Roddick added, “Smart.” Roddick said he had an ongoing struggle during the match between the job at hand and facing his friend. “It was a weird situation for me, kind of all day,” Roddick said. “Because, you know, I’m fond of Justin as a person, but at the same time this my most important event of the year. So as much as I would have loved to have kind of joined in and banter and do the whole thing, at the same time I felt like I had a job to do and something to accomplish out there. I was struggling with the kind of give-and-take of the match.” At one point Roddick was asked how he would describe Justin to someone who doesn’t know him, and Gimelstob interjected “Sexy, a good kisser.” Roddick answered “Funny,” and Gimelstob summarized, “Enjoys a good cuddle.” Gimelstob is playing the men’s doubles with Amer Delic and the mixed with Ashley Harkleroad.
MAL GALA SHOWCASES STARS AFTER OPEN — Ivan Lendl, local tour player Amer Delic, and coaches/former tour players Todd Martin, Tom Gullikson, and Brian Gottfried are among the athletes, actors, entertainers, and former Olympians making up approximately 30 celebrities that will participate in the 11th annual Mercedes Benz/MaliVai Washington Golf and Tennis Gala in Jacksonville, Fla., following the US Open on Sept. 10-11. Tennis and golf pro-ams are capped with a gala dinner featuring live and silent auctions, dinner, cocktails, entertainment and a scholarship awards ceremony for MaliVai Washington Foundation students. Auction items include a walk-on part on the hit T.V. show “Numb3rs”, a seven-day cruise on Holland America, a three-night stay at the Badrutt’s Place Hotel in St. Moritz, Switzerland, a four-day getaway at the (Tony) Brackens family ranch, and tickets to the US Open. All proceeds benefit the MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation, established by ’96 by the Wimbledon runner-up and located in the inner-city Durkeeville area of Jacksonville, with a mission “to utilize tennis as a tool that helps develop positive life skills and encourage academic achievement in youth who otherwise would not be exposed to the sport.”
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