In recent years, the stadiums of tennis’ four major tournaments—U.S. Open, Australian Open, Wimbledon, and French Open—are showcasing more than just the players’ down-the-line backhands and serve techniques; they’ve now become arenas of style. Tennis players’ on-court fashion choices have been gaining more and more attention, and this year’s U.S. Open, which ended on Monday, was certainly no exception.
Many of the top players chose two outfits for the tournament: one for daytime matches and one for nighttime matches, resulting in double the opportunity to stand out with their sartorial choices.One of tennis’ most seasoned fashion veterans, Maria Sharapova, donned a lilac halter dress with neon orange piping that she custom-designed with Nike for the event, as she always does with her tournament ensembles. For after-dark matches, she switched it up and wore a dark gray and yellow dress with black accents. Another noteworthy fashion follow on the women’s circuit is Caroline Wozniacki, who wears Stella McCartney for Adidas on tour. For the US Open, she chose a simplistic white dress with a pleated skirt. If the media continues to pay so much attention to tennis players’ clothes, more high-end designers will likely follow suit and begin dressing the top players as well.
It’s not only the women who are participating, however. With Roger Federer forging the way, men have caught on to the fashion movement as well. Back in 2006, Federer caused quite a buzz when he stepped onto the Centre Court at Wimbledon in a Nike blazer over his tournament outfit; more time was spent discussing his outerwear choices than his forehand. At the next year’s Wimbledon, he followed up that look with an entire outfit: he donned coordinating pants, shoes, bag, and headband in addition to the blazer. Now, five years later, the up-and-coming players are also eager to show off their style. In this month’s issue of Vogue, 20-year-old tennis player Milos Raonic attributes the newfound interest in fashion to Federer: “There are a lot more guys participating now, thanks to Roger. It adds more flavor to tennis off the court.” Now that the even youngest generation of professional tennis players has hopped on board, this style-conscious trend in tennis shows no signs of slowing down.
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