I made my annual trek down to Key Biscayne in Miami recently for the Sony Ericsson Open. There are so many things I like about this tennis tournament...
... like, the sheer anticipation as you make your way to the welcoming tournament entrance. Usually, at this time I'm chattering excitedly about the draw and strategizing on what matches to see.
Of course, being in South Florida it's hot. (Read: HOT!) It's always entertaining to see the creative methods people concoct to block the Miami sun after awhile.
Seeing a match with Swiss champion Roger Federer is always a must. I nearly swoon at the sight of his backhand (or maybe it's the Miami heat).
I love the passion of the players. This is Serbian Janko Tipsarevic on the grandstand court. He's one of my favorite players to photograph. He leaves it all on the court.
And, there are decisive moments when you know one point could end up determining the match. There were a few of those moments during this match with Ukranian player Alexandre Dolgopolov.
When strolling the tournament grounds or having a snack, I'm usually on high alert. The players come and go...and if I'm on my game I'm able to get a few shots. That's Nadia Petrova walking across the grounds. (Oddly enough, I also saw her at a restaurant later that night.)
And, I'm always on the look out for the unexpected...like this shot of Venus Williams leaving the stadium court with her father who carried her racquet bag (something which I've never seen before with any player). Venus, a grand slam champion several times over, was recently diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome, an autoimmune condition which causes, amongst other things, fatigue. This was her first tournament playing since announcing her health issue. The match I saw, she rallied from being down match point to win a grueling 3 hour, 3 set match. What a fighter! Although smiling, she looked physically depleted as she left the court and it was touching to her dad there to help her. The men's and women's finals are this weekend. But, that's a wrap for me for this year's whirlwind Miami tennis tour. Can't wait to see what 2013 brings!