Jelena Jankovic bristles at opponent's complaints | sports | Hindustan Times
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Jelena Jankovic bristles at opponent's complaints

sports Updated: Aug 28, 2008 09:18 IST

If opponents aren't ready when Jelena Jankovic is ready to serve, she isn't about to wait.

When complaints from her vanquished Swedish opponent Sofia Arvidsson were relayed to her by a reporter in a post-match news conference, Jankovic bristled. Arvidsson felt that Jankovic ignored her raised hand, asking her to wait before unleashing a serve. "I really didn't see that," Jankovic said after her 6-3, 6-7 (5), 7-5 win on Wednesday. "Maybe she lifted her arm up, but I didn't see it. I was so tired and it doesn't mean it's bad sportsmanship. It was not my intention.

"Also, the receiver should always follow the server. When I'm ready to serve she should be ready to receive. Those are the rules."

DJOKOVIC FINE: Third-seeded Novak Djokovic laughed when the first question posed to him was about his ankle. He rolled his left ankle during his opening-round straight-sets victory over Arnaud Clement of France.

"Right away. Let's cut to the chase," Djokovic said with a grin.

"It's OK," he continued. "It's going to be good in two days, I'm sure."

Djokovic said he was feeling more concern than pain after he rolled the ankle in the third set. He received on-court treatment then wrapped up the win.

HOME IN NEW YORK: Svetlana Kuznetsova hails from Russia, yet feels right at home in New York.

The third-seeded Kuznetsova won the US Open title in 2004 and made it back to the finals last year before falling to Justine Henin. With Wednesday's second-round win over Sorana Cirstea of Romania, might she be in line for another deep run? "I like this (tournament), it supports me in some kind of way," she said. "I don't know how to explain. I just play much more confidently. I enjoy this city so much, and the crowd. When you play here, it's a different atmosphere and you just have so much fun being on the court."

Kuznetsova, also a runner-up at the 2006 French Open, has been a finalist three times on the tour this year without claiming a title. Her best performance in the three majors was a semifinal appearance at Roland Garros.

"I don't think you should be coming into a Grand Slam and playing first matches with the best game you've got," she said. "I want to grow every match, playing better and better. Today I played much better than my first match, so it's looking good for me."

GOING GREEN: Even though the US Open courts are blue, America's Grand Slam is starting to go green.

At a news conference on Wednesday before Day 3 of the two-week tournament, the USTA launched a series of green initiatives at Flushing Meadows.

Through relationships with GreenSlam, Environmental Resources Management and the Natural Resources Defense Council, the USTA has increased its commitment to long-term environmental initiatives including improved waste and energy management programs, the use of recycled paper and a fan awareness campaign.

Billie Jean King, the champion player whose name graces the USTA National Tennis Center in New York, is the co-founder of GreenSlam and a spokeswoman for the fan awareness campaign. "When they named this 46{-acre Corona Park _ which is a public park _ after me ... I thought I've got to do something within a year. I want to do some initiative, something that will make a difference," she said.

It took two years, but the impact is already being felt. The approximately 70,000 tennis balls used at the US Open are reused for a year following the tournament after they are donated to tennis programs around the country. The 25,000 tennis ball cans are broken down, with the materials going to create hats and T-shirts in an organic product clothing line.

"Believe it or not, the hats you see are made from plastic bottles," said Danny Zausner, the managing director of the tennis center.

To help fans reduce the use of plastic bags in everyday life, a reusable tote bag is being sold at the Open. The USTA is also increasing exposure of wind power by having the New York Power Pool supply wind to the tournament facility.