The Unhappy Slam: Mid-Aussie Open Report


We're checking in at the midpoint of the 2018 Australian Open, an altogether different experience than last year. The topic of most interest to us is Novak Djokovic's alleged call for a players' union at the recent ATP all-player meeting, and the questions this raises for the sport. We grapple with the coverage that openly ridiculed Djokovic's actions, the potential ways that a union can change tennis for the better, and the inevitable gender politics embedded in the discussion. But first, we recap some of the biggest moments of the first week, including Naomi Osaka's big night, the Halep-Davis marathon, Tsonga's thrilling 5-setter against Shapovalov, and Kerber's convincing beatdown of Maria Sharapova.


1:00 Did anyone else feel that dark cloud above?
6:50 The heat rule: a quick meteorology lesson from an unqualified teacher
16:00 The bad news portion - Venus-Bencic
20:50 Naomi Osaka stuns in every way against Ash Barty
27:45 Other notable matches: Tsonga def. Shapo, Simona def. Davis 15-13 in the third; Woz, Wawrinka, Goffin, Zverev-Chung
38:30 Kerber is well and truly back, rolls Sharapova to the tune of 6-1 6-3
42:50 When you miss one big and important thing about the LAMP Tennys Sandgren (Last American Male Player?) - check out this and this from @BadToss
45:45 Umpires have HAD IT
50:05 Favorite and least favorite kits: Tsonga's Adidas shorts deserve a trophy of their own
54:30 Diving into Novak Djokovic's alleged call for unionization: the poor coverage, the potential for real change in tennis, the many questions that need to be asked