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6 fun facts about this year's US Open
JPMorgan Chase is celebrating 36 years of partnership with the US Open.
As the first ball toss of the US Open nears, we've gathered some insider tips for one of the world's most popular tennis tournaments. The tournament will be held August 28-September 10, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, in Flushing, New York. Here's a list of tournament essentials—from what to eat, to who to watch, to where to charge your phone:
Serena Williams is sitting out this year's tournament, awaiting the birth of her child, which leaves a wide open women's field. Last year's winner, Angelique Kerber, has struggled with her form and not won a title since, but managed to hold onto a No. 3 ranking. Along with Kerber, Simona Halp, Caroline Wozniacki and Elina Svitolina are all currently vying to knock Karolina Pliskova out of the top spot.
The young and the restless
This year's US Open will likely offer some exciting matches with a crop of young stars, and veteran tennis players. Sloane Stephens is winning again. The 24-year-old's recent upsets of Kerber and Petra Kvitova after a 12-month absence make her one to watch.
Jack Sock, 24, who made his singles mark by making it to the fourth round last year, has a new coach in Jay Berger. We'll see whether the work on his offensive game and variety on the court pays off at the Open.
Sips to beat the heat
Stay cool by ordering the Grey Goose Honey Deuce—an icy mix of Grey Goose vodka, lemonade, and raspberry liqueur garnished with honeydew melon balls that look like tennis balls. It's been the US Open's signature cocktail for 10 years. If you can't make it to the tournament, there are recipes and videos online to make your own at home.
Becoming a ballperson
There were 80 highly sought-after spots as ball-persons for this year's tournament. In June, nearly 500 people showed up to compete for the job by showcasing their running, throwing and catching skills. Anyone 14 years old and above can apply; usually, the gigs go to teenagers. It is a paid position and they wear uniforms designed by Ralph Lauren.
Matches made in heaven
Not all the action is in Arthur Ashe Stadium. Be sure to check out Court 17—completed in 2011—as well as the Grandstand, and the grounds courts. There are always great matches at these locations, and at the outer and practice courts. The Louis Armstrong Stadium is going through renovations this year and will reopen for the 2018 US Open with a roof. To find out who's playing here, their rankings, and more info to determine if it's a good match to watch, check out the US Open app for iOS or Android.
Freedom! (to charge your phone)
This year, Chase will offer more Charge and Watch devices that fans can pick up from three locations around the grounds (the Chase booths and a third location near the Armstrong stadium). Whether you're in line for your Honey Deuce or wandering the outer courts, you can catch multiple key matches as they happen, all without eating into your data. Even better, the device will simultaneously charge your phone. Chargers are available to all tournament attendees while supplies last and can be easily checked out and returned at the Chase Booth. Don't sit on this one, supplies are limited.
Chase is the presenting sponsor of the Women's Singles Championship and for the first year the Men's Singles Championship as well.
Read more about Chase at the US Open.
Valentina I. Valentini is a freelance journalist living in Los Angeles. She has contributed to VanityFair.com, Vulture.com, LA Magazine, Boston Magazine, Variety and many other publications.