Game, Set, Chat in US Open TV First

Updated: 01 September 2015 08:01 IST

On court interviews are not new to tennis but in her opening round match at US Open 2015, Coco Vandeweghe caused a stir by speaking to a TV presenter between her match against Sloane Stephens.

Game, Set, Chat in US Open TV First
Coco Vandeweghe of the United States returns a shot against Sloane Stephens of the United States. © AFP

New York:

Coco Vandeweghe defeated Sloane Stephens 6-4, 6-3 at the US Open on Monday but it was her decision to grant a television interview mid-match that caused a stir. (Complete US Open 2015 coverage)

After wrapping up the first set on Louis Armstrong Court, the 23-year-old American was joined by ESPN pundit and former player Pam Shriver for a courtside chat during the changeover. (The upsets on Day 1: Nishikori suffers heartbreak | Ivanovic stunned out)

Vandeweghe admitted she could not remember what she told Shriver but insisted that although she had agreed to ESPN's request on the eve of the match, she retained the option to change her mind at the last minute.

"I could say it two seconds before I walked out on the court. I gave her the nod to go ahead, and then it happened," she added.

Vandeweghe said that she believed the brief 30-second interview, which covered basic tennis conversation fillers such as being focussed and aggressive, could be a winner with fans.

"Well, before it happened I was thinking maybe I might lose focus doing it. But then at the same time we have on-court coaching for WTA events," she said.

"You could also lose focus in that way because you're speaking to someone. I think it's a positive. I think any innovation, it is a positive. So I see no harm in it."

However, not all players shared her enthusiasm, with former world number one Caroline Wozniacki dismissing it as a fad.

"Did I just see Coco do an interview on court, mid match, after the first set?? Surely you would wanna focus on the game out there? No?" tweeted two-time runner-up Wozniacki.

But men's top seed Novak Djokovic said the idea had merits, although he would not be tempted to break his routine, especially at a Grand Slam contest.

"What I think they're trying to do here is kind of implement the same kind of media interaction as in, for example, other sports, like basketball after the first or second quarter," said Djokovic.

"I don't know how much it can really work in tennis, but I think the impression of this first interview has been made. I think most players in the locker room are talking about.

"It's going to be interesting to see if somebody is going to follow up and accept to do the same. I will not, definitely, this tournament. But who knows? Who knows what the future brings?"

Canadian golden girl Eugenie Bouchard said she was still in two minds over whether or not mid-match interviews are here to stay.

"Maybe only if I win the first set or something," said Bouchard when asked if she would agree to be put under such scrutiny.

"I think it's kind of cool in a way. If it gives fans more access, if it makes the match more interesting, why not? If the players are used to it, I don't see anything wrong with it."

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Topics mentioned in this article Coco Vandeweghe Sloane Stephens Tennis
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