What makes the US OPEN extraordinarily special Shyam Sundar September 14, 2015 Events, Pro #1 The US Open is the second oldest major sporting event held in the USA Yes, if you didn’t know it, the US Open of tennis have been invented even before the Stanley Cup, all the way back in 1881. Here the top 9 oldest major sporting events held in the United States of America and the year in which they were first held: Kentucky Derby (horse racing) – 1875 US Open (tennis) – 1881 Stanley Cup (hockey) – 1893 US Open (golf) – 1895 World Series (baseball) – 1903 Indianapolis 500 (auto racing) – 1911 NFL Championships/Super Bowl (American football) – 1920 The Masters (golf) – 1934 NBA Finals (basketball) – 1947 That means that this 2015 edition of the US Open will be the 135th! #2 The Prize Money and US Open Series Bonus The 2015 edition of the US Open will break for the first time the $40 million prize money barrier. With an increase of 10% compared to the previous year, the US Open reached the incredible total of $42.3 Million in prize money, to be awarded as follows: Singles Doubles (each team): Winner: $3,300,000 Winners: $570,000 Runner-Up: $1,600,000 Runners-Up: $275,000 Semifinalist: $805,000 Semifinalist: $133,150 Quarterfinalist: $410,975 Quarterfinalist: $67,675 Round of 16: $213,575 Round of 16: $35,025 Round of 32: $120,200 Round of 32: $21,700 Round of 64: $68,600 Round of 128: $39,500 #3 No woman has ever won the US Open 7 times in the Open Era Serena Williams had a chance to become the first ever woman to win the US Open a total of Seven Times in the Open Era (and also the 1st Calendar Slam since 1988) but was shocked by Italian Roberta Vinci. No men or woman has ever reached the feat, at least not in the Open Era. Since the beginning of the Open Era Serena Williams and Chris Evert are the two players that have won most titles on the women’s side with 6 crowns. Before that, the American Helen Wills Moody has 7 titles, and American/Norwegian Molla Bjurstedt Mallory has a record 8 titles at the USTA Tennis Championships. #4 No man in the Open Era has won the US Open Six Times No man in the open era has ever won 6 titles at the US Open. The record of 5 titles is held by three players: Jimmy Connors (1974, 1976, 1978, 1982-83), Pete Sampras (1990, 1993, 1995-96, 2002) and Roger Federer (2004-08). Before the Open Era was introduced, there were three men holding the all-time record for most men’s singles title. Here they are: Richard sears – 7 Titles (1881-87) Bill Larned – 7 Titles (1901-02, 1907-11) Bill Tilden – 7 Titles (1920-25, 1929) #5 Tommy Haas and Venus Williams Have Seen New York More Times Than Anyone Else Tommy Haas and Venus Williams are the two players who have appeared the most times in the main draw of the US Open among the 2015 participants. Both Tommy and Venus have made their way into the main draw a total of 17 times. Following with 16 appearances is Roger Federer on the men’s side and Serena Williams and Francesca Schiavone on the women’s side. #6 Defending the US Open Title is Not Easy In the history of the tournament it has been very hard to see players defending their title at the US Open. A total of 22 women have managed to defend their title at least once, the list including Steffi Graf (88-89 and 95-96), Martina Navratilova (83-84 and 86-87) and Serena Williams and Venus Williams (2012-14 Serena and 00-01 Venus). A total of only 12 men have managed to defend their US Open title at least once. The last to achieve the feat was Roger Federer in 2008. Before that, Patrick Rafter was the last to defend his crown in New York in 1998. #7 The Hard Court Lead a Good Sign For Novak Djokovic to Win the Title The hard court leader chart has been created to predict the US Open result of the player who has been looking the most in-form. To have won the greater number of hard court matches before the US Open doesn’t necessary rime with title win. In fact, the last player to win the US Open after finishing the summer as the player with most wins on hard courts has been Novak Djokovic in 2011. Before him, only Roger Federer (2005-06) and Andy Roddick (2003) have managed to transform their good form on hard into a Grand Slam triumph. Good thing for Novak is that in 2011 he won the US Open title after winning 33 matches on hard courts before the event, which is the same number he has won in this 2015 season. #8 Roger Federer King of Hard Courts As we approach the US Open, Roger Federer is the player who has won the most hard court titles in the Open Era. Let’s have a look at the complete top 5: Roger Federer – 59 titles Jimmy Connors – 49 titles Andre Agassi – 46 titles Novak Djokovic – 40 titles Pete Sampras – 36 titles #9 The Roof on Arthur Ashe and the US Open of the Future Starting from this year, the players will be allowed to see an almost-complete retractable roof on Arthur Ashe stadium. The roof has already impressed players and media present here in New York for its clean design and ability to perfectly fit into the picture. In 2016 the roof will officially be completed. A roof on Arthur Ashe is part of a renovation plan for the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre which will look as the picture above by next year. As part of the plan, the Louis Armstrong Stadium – once the centre court – will be demolished and a new grandstand, more modern and efficient, will be built.