The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Tokyo (AFP) – Venus Williams was denied a new record for the world’s fastest serve Friday after tennis chiefs said a bullet delivery clocked at 129.9 miles per hour was not measured by the right equipment.

The resurgent American star, 33, hit the rocket serve during Thursday’s 6-3, 6-7 (4-7), 6-3 quarter-final win over Canadian teenager Eugenie Bouchard at the Pan Pacific Open.

However, the IDS radar guns the WTA uses to track official service speeds are not deployed in Tokyo, meaning Williams’s own women’s record of 128.9 mph — registered at the 2007 US Open and on her way to winning Wimbledon in 2008 — still stands as the fastest of all time.

The seven-time Grand Slam singles champion, whose ranking has slumped to 63rd in the world after two years of illness and injury problems, admitted she could not believe her eyes when she saw the figure 129.9 mph flash up on the court-side speedometer.

“I saw that but I was like: ‘Is that real?’ So I don’t know if that’s real,” Williams told the WTA. “I know I’ve been serving a lot harder this tournament than since I’ve come back from my back injury. I couldn’t really serve that hard at the U.S. Open (earlier this month) and this summer.

“It feels good but I don’t know if it was that hard. I hope it was — that’s insane, it’s awesome.”

Measuring the speed of serves is a notoriously inexact science as the equipment used at tournaments where the IDS equipment is not in place has proved less than reliable.

Williams, who won the latest of her 44 career singles titles at last October’s Luxembourg Open after being diagnosed with autoimmune disorder Sjogren’s Syndrome in 2011, has hit a purple patch in Japan, showing glimpses of the form that won her five Wimbledon titles between 2000 and 2008.

“I’m surprised I’m able to play these matches,” said Williams after her three-hour marathon against the 19-year-old Bouchard. “It’s just determination, adrenalin and desire.

“As a professional athlete you have a window. My window’s still open and I’m going to take advantage of it. I’m not giving it up that easily.”

Williams has again ruled out any chance of retirement in Tokyo this week.

“It’s about staying healthy and staying in the moment,” she said. “There’s no roadmap. I can’t go out there with fear. I know my luck’s going to change some time. I love it. Anyway (sister) Serena wouldn’t let me retire.”

The fastest men’s serve ever recorded in a professional tournament was a 163.4 mph missile fired by Australian Sam Groth in South Korea last year.

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Donald Trump

Image via Twitter

A year after former President Donald Trump left the White House and Joe Biden was sworn in as president of the United States, Trump continues to have considerable influence in the Republican Party. Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a former Trump critic turned Trump sycophant, recently told Fox News that having a “working relationship” with Trump must be a litmus test for anyone in a GOP leadership role in Congress. But an NBC News poll, conducted in January 14-18, 2022, finds that many Republican voters identify as Republicans first and Trump supporters second.

Analyzing that poll in the New York Times on January 21, reporters Leah Askarinam and Blake Hounshell, explain, “Buried in a new survey published today is a fascinating nugget that suggests the Republican Party may not be as devoted to Trump as we’ve long assumed. Roughly every month for the last several years, pollsters for NBC News have asked: ‘Do you consider yourself to be more of a supporter of Donald Trump or more of a supporter of the Republican Party?’ Over most of that time, Republicans have replied that they saw themselves as Trump supporters first.”

Keep reading... Show less

Ivanka Trump, right

Image via @Huffington Post

As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s select committee on the January 6, 2021 insurrection moves along, it is examining Ivanka Trump’s actions that day — especially the former White House senior adviser urging her father, then- President Donald Trump, to call off his supporters when the U.S. Capitol Building was under attack. This week, Ivanka Trump’s importance to the committee is examined in a column by liberal Washington Post opinion writer Greg Sargent and an article by blogger Marcy Wheeler.

Sargent notes that the committee’s “new focus on Ivanka Trump” shows that it “is developing an unexpectedly comprehensive picture of how inextricably linked the violence was to a genuine plot to thwart a legitimately elected government from taking power.”

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}