Skip to main content

U.S. Open: Roger Federer is the greatest... at signing autographs

How Long Do Players Spend on Court After Matches Signing Giant Tennis Balls?


Roger Federer signs autographs at this year's U.S. Open. Getty Images for USTA
 
An autograph from a tennis star is one of the most coveted souvenirs at the U.S. Open. But securing one isn't easy. It requires agility, good court positioning and a bit of luck. It also requires a player willing to sign enough autographs to get to yours, which raises an essential question: Which player represents an autograph seeker's best bet?

To find out, the Count broke out the stopwatch to tally how long top players have been signing balls, shirts, programs and the occasional body part after winning their matches at this year's U.S. Open. The answer: When in doubt, stake out Roger Federer

The 17-time Grand Slam champion may have lost some of his quickness on the court, but he displays vintage endurance at the edges of the stands. After beating Marcel Granollers in a third-round match on Sunday, Federer lingered for more than 8½ minutes, signing at least 127 autographs.

Of the nearly 60 matches the Count observed through Sunday, it was the longest any player spent scribbling signatures after a match.

Giant tennis balls covered with player autographs are a common sight at the U.S. Open. WSJ's Geoff Foster talked to tennis fans about collecting signatures - and deciphering them. Photo: Jennifer Weiss for The Wall Street Journal 

Through the first three rounds, Federer has stayed on the court for 15 minutes, 33 seconds signing autographs, averaging one autograph every 3.6 seconds. Novak Djokovic clocked in behind Federer at 12:27. But just as when the two met in the Wimbledon final this year, Djokovic outscored Federer where it counted. With a faster hand, Djokovic out-signed his rival, 292 autographs to 258. That said, Federer signed for over nine minutes after a practice session on Monday. 

John Isner, a player with one of the game's fastest serves, was the speediest at signing his name (1.8 seconds). 

On the women's side, Serena Williams clocked in at 5:16 (one autograph every 2.8 seconds), Victoria Azarenka at 3:59 (2.0 seconds), Caroline Wozniacki at 3:38 (2.1 seconds) and Maria Sharapova at 3:07 (2.2 seconds). 

The most difficult signature to get: Venus Williams, who signed for a total of 41 seconds following two singles victories.

One thing that is clear is that the more experienced the player, the faster they become at signing their name on giant tennis balls. After losing a first-round match last week to No. 2 seed Simona Halep, NCAA champion Danielle Rose Collins stayed on Arthur Ashe Stadium for 1:50. But her rate of one autograph every 4.6 seconds was the slowest recorded. 

For his part, Federer offered a tip to fans. "I try to sign as many hats and shirts that have my branding on," he said, "because I feel like these people really, really care about meeting me."
—Brian Costa, Andrew Beaton, Geoff Foster, Sara Germano and Tom Perrotta contributed to this article.


To order my book Autograph Hell, please click HERE
For more information about my Summit Murder Mystery series, please CLICK HERE
Follow me on twitter, HERE
'Like' my Facebook page, HERE
Subscribe to my YouTube channel, HERE and HERE
 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

James Dean’s Intimate Letters to Girlfriend Coming to Auction

Three James Dean handwritten letters to his girlfriend, never before offered for sale, will be sold at Christie's London November 23, 2011.I've posted the article below from Autograph Magazine.  Take a look! 
James Dean handwritten letters are among the rarest and most valuable of Hollywood autographs. Only a few have come to market since Dean’s tragic death in a 1955 car crash, just 24 years old. So when Neil Roberts, Christie’s Head of Pop Culture in London, asked for any information we might have on them to help him with a potential consignment, I had to know more.

But I had to wait….

“At the moment they are reluctant to send me any copies,” Neil said. “However the names and places they provided seem to add up. I’m sure you will understand that at this time I cannot pass on any details.”

That was a year and a half ago. The wait was worth it.

On November 23, Christie’s will auction three James Dean handwritten letters never before offered for sale during their fall Pop…

How to Preserve your Autographed Photo Collectables

I came across this article and thought it was a good one to share!  We all know that preserving your photos is very important!  What is the point of collecting autographs if the photos become faded and start to deteriorate in a few years because you don't handle them properly?  Take a look at these autograph preservation tips!

1. Acid free is the way to go - Whether you choose plastic bags, cardboard folders or frames to display your autographs, you need to make sure that the material you use is acid free. Standard bags, folders and frames are made with materials that release acids over time. These acids can make your photographs and other memorabilia fade and disintegrate. Make sure that the products that you buy to store your autographs is clearly labeled acid-free. If the package doesn't specify that, don't trust it with your photos.

2. Keep humidity low - Humidity causes moisture which can be devastating to paper products like photographs. To keep your autogra…

Is the selfie the new autograph?

By Brent Briggeman

Advertisement Every time a fan pulls out a phone and asks Michael McKenry to pose for a selfie, it makes him laugh.

It reminds the Rockies catcher of "The Goonies," where one of the young characters created a device that holds the camera out in front of him.


"When you think about it, he's the one who invented the selfie stick," McKenry said of the kid in the 1985 film. "And it took all this time for technology to catch up."

Technology has caught up, all right. Roughly 100 million selfies are taken daily according to a study from Google, those making up part of the nearly 900 billion photos snapped in a year according to Agence France-Presse. The Internet is filled with surveys that tell what your selfie habits reveal about your personality, Oxford Dictionaries named selfie the Word of the Year in 2013 and if there was any doubt selfies had hit the mainstream, that was erased when host Ellen…