Andy Murray believes players will learn to love the constant noise inside the US Open’s showpiece Arthur Ashe Stadium, a cacophony of 22,000 fans amplified to eardrum-busting levels by the effect of the arena’s closed roof.
Andy Murray had the chair umpire demand fans cut their chatter early in his second round US Open win against Spain’s Marcel Granollers as the noise was becoming too big a distraction
Andy Murray had the chair umpire demand fans cut their chatter early in hissecond round win against Spain’s Marcel Granollers on Thursday as the noise was becoming too big a distraction.
The world number two was the latest player to voice concerns over a din made worse by the torrential rain battering the new USD 150 million roof.
“You can’t hear anything. You could hear the line calls, but not so much when the opponent was hitting the ball or even when you’re hitting the ball,” said Andy Murray after his 6-4, 6-1, 6-4 win.
“It’s not just the eyes, it’s the ears, it helps us pick up the speed of the ball, the spin that’s on the ball, how hard someone’s hitting it.
“If we played with our ears covered or with headphones on, it would be a big advantage if your opponent wasn’t wearing them.”
Despite the challenges, Andy Murray believes players will get used to the noise which has long been a factor at the US Open, especially during the tournament’s raucous night sessions.
“I’m sure if the feedback is that the TV or the spectators aren’t enjoying the match as much then they will look into it and try and change it,” he predicted.
“But if it’s fine on TV, which from what I have heard it is fine on TV — I don’t know what the fans have said about it yet, but the players will adjust.”
On Wednesday, Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova complained that it was hard to even hear the ball coming off Garbine Muguruza’s racquet during her shock win over the third seed on Ashe.
That match was played with the roof open, but there was still an enclosed effect due to the massive, permanent wing supports which cover the high surrounds of the arena.
“Sometimes you don’t hear the ball hit, so it’s coming to you and you think it’s still somewhere there,” said Sevastova.
“It was loud during points and everything. I mean, you don’t expect it.”
Muguruza said she had never experienced such bedlam in a playing arena.
“I felt a lot of noise, a lot of noise on the court,” said the French Open champion.
A bit too much
Rafael Nadal, who completed his second round match with the roof closed for the first time at the tournament on Wednesday, admitted he was surprised by the din.
“There was a little bit more noise than usual. I have been playing here for so many years and I don’t remember that noise when you are playing. Was a little bit strange,” said the Spaniard.
“For some moments it was a little bit too much during the points.”
However, for Nadal, the problem with the Ashe arena, the biggest tennis stadium in the world, lies mainly with the inability of New York fans to sit still for sustained periods.
He wants stewards to be more diligent when it comes to allowing fans to still take their seats even when a changeover is already finished.
“Every time you are waiting. I know it’s difficult because the court is very big,” Andy Murray said
Serena Williams defeated fellow American Vania King 6-3, 6-3 in the US Open second round, her 306th Grand Slam singles match win tying her with Martina Navratilova for the most ever for a woman
Wimbledon champions Serena Williams and Andy Murray raised the roof at the US Open on Thursday, powering into the third round with decisive straight-sets victories.
World number one Williams defeated fellow American Vania King 6-3, 6-3, her 306th Grand Slam singles match win tying her with Martina Navratilova for the most ever for a woman.
Serena is stalking history on the hardcourts of Flushing Meadows, seeking a seventh US Open title and a 23rd Grand Slam singles crown which would both be Open Era records.
She fired 13 aces, with a total of 38 winners against 87th-ranked wild card King, and said the troublesome right shoulder that has hindered her since Wimbledon wasn’t a problem.
“So far, so good,” said Serena, who was cheered on by rap mogul Jay Z and his pop superstar wife Beyonce as she booked a meeting with 47th-ranked Swede Johanna Larsson for a place in the last 16.
The win marked Serena’s first match under the new roof of the Arthur Ashe stadium, which was closed all day after early showers that disrupted play on the outside courts.
By the time she opened the night session the rain had actually tailed off.
Andy Murray, however, played with the rain drumming on the USD 150 million retractable roof, adding to the noise that has long been a hallmark of America’s Grand Slam.
Andy Murray, who followed up his Wimbledon triumph with a second straight Olympic gold in Rio, didn’t let the unfamiliar din distract him in a 6-4, 6-1, 6-4 victory over tenacious Spaniard Marcel Granollers.
“We’re lucky that we get to play under the roof because otherwise there’d be no tennis,” Murray said. “It’s good for everyone.”
However, he acknowledged that the acoustics were problematic.
“You can’t hear anything, really,” said Murray, who is trying to become just the fourth man to reach all four Grand Slam finals in the same year.
“I mean, you could hear the line calls, but not so much when he was hitting the ball or even when you’re hitting the ball, really, which is tough.”
Nevertheless, Murray looked on his way to a routine victory over 45th-ranked Granollers with a 4-1 lead in the opening set, but wasted two set points in dropping his serve in the ninth game before finally breaking Granollers in the next on his seventh set point.
“Thankfully I got through that 5-4 game and then the momentum was back with me,” said Murray, who broke Granollers twice in the second set and once in a tightly contested third to seal the win.
As the showers lingered, 11 doubles matches scheduled for outside courts were cancelled and some remaining matches reassigned.
Juan Martin del Potro, who has undergone four wrist surgeries since lifting the US Open trophy in 2009, was scheduled to close the action on Ashe against 19th-seeded American Steve Johnson.
Venus Williams, the sixth seed whose seven Grand Slam titles include two US Opens, coasted to the 70th US Open match win of her career 6-2, 6-3 win over Germany’s Julia Goerges.
The elder Williams, bedevilled by 63 unforced errors in a scrappy first-round win over Ukrainian Kateryna Kozlova, cut that to 17 in a crisp performance against 64th-ranked German Goerges.
Fired-up fifth seed Simona Halep also advanced, downing Czech Lucie Safarova 6-3, 6-4 in a battle of former French Open finalists.
Among those who didn’t have the luxury of the roof, 2014 finalist Kei Nishikori of Japan waited out a third-set rain delay en route to a 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory over 20-year-old Russian qualifier Karen Khachanov.
Women’s fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland survived an early onslaught from US Open debutant Naomi Broady to beat the Briton 7-6 (11/9), 6-3.
The 26-year-old Broady’s aggressive game paid off early, but finally her 37 winners and 36 unforced errors were no match for the canny Radwanska’s 28 and nine.