Most Memorable NHO Moments: Part 4

by Nicholas McCarvel

Main draw play for the New Haven Open at Yale gets underway Sunday, giving us another chance to check out two moments from the tournament’s past. In 2011, Mother Nature brought her big power to Connecticut (twice!), and last year a Wimbledon champ reigned supreme. Check out the stories below.

Earthquake Has Tennis All Shook Up, 2011:
And a hurricane! Early in the week former world No. 1 Jelena Jankovic thought she felt dizzy on Stadium Court, but it was actually a 5.9-magnitude earthquake that was rocking all of the Connecticut Tennis Center – and much of the Northeast. Some 4,500 fans – as well as Jankovic and opponent Elena Vesnina – were evacuated as crews assured the structural safety of the site for the tournament to go on. Just a few days later, Hurricane Irene was on a crash course with New Haven, pushing the Saturday final between Caroline Wozniacki and Petra Cetkovska several hours up. Wozniacki won her fourth straight title just as the rain started to fall. With the tournament wrapped, a local creative mind came up with “I SURVIVED THE 2011 NEW HAVEN OPEN: neither rain nor hurricane nor earthquake can steal the show” T-shirts. Sorry Mother Nature, you lost this match.

A Wimbledon Winner Takes Over New Haven, 2012:
When Petra Kvitova is on, she’s on. The young Czech player was a shock winner at Wimbledon in 2011, stunning Maria Sharapova in the final. Last year she came to New Haven hoping to secure the US Open Series title after a steady summer performance that included a victory in Canada. She did just that, becoming the first Wimbledon champ to win in New Haven since Lindsay Davenport. Kvitova beat notables like Sara Errani and Maria Kirilenko to earn her first-ever New Haven title, and secure the US Open Series crown to her name.

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