The Pilot Pen
Tennis Center in New Haven, Connecticut was the venue of the last pre-US Open
tournament called the Pilot Pen Tennis
named after it's sponsors
, one of of whom's products I won in a very closely contested scratch card affair. This event has actually been held in Yale's huge campus since 1998 firstly as a women only tournament but since 2005 joined by some of the best men in the world's tennis rankings.
We had tickets for both the day and evening sessions on a hot and sticky Monday. The world's best players sadly for us appeared to take this week off but we still saw a nice mixture of games with 5 courts being used. Polish number five seed Agnieszka Radwanska undeservedly beat the Italian Vinci first up in front of rows and rows of empty seats. Then the arrogant Californian Robert Kendrick beat the Dane Frederik Nielsen much to the joy of the growing crowd.
After a break for lunch according to the local Connecticut news tonight a record 5,000 people sat in the sun and saw the talented Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis lose inexplicably to Portugal's Fredrico Gil, who had qualified. The lady behind me told anyone that would listen that Baghdatis was from this small "Cyprus island called Crete."
Then finally for the day session trim looking Amelie Mauresmo easily put pay Ai Sugiyama to win in two sets.
We had made our minds up to only watch the first night game which was between pevious French Open champ and first seed Svetlana Kuznetsova and Jie Zheng from China. These two were by far the best two players we saw on the day but we ducked out as the game approached it's 3rd hour and a 2nd set tie break (Kuznetsova eventually won after 3 sets) to get our shuttle back to the hotel. We've enjoyed our long and hot day and tomorrow we make our way back to New York for our flight back to Bermuda tomorrow evening, hopefully via the reportedly charming town of Greenwich.