by: Dave Wilson, Tennis Correspondent
Train Derails Krajicek
Rooters--September 7, 2000, Flushing Meadow
Richard Krajicek was killed last night, slain in a freak runaway train
accident. He was playing a superb quarterfinal match against the greatest
player in tennis, when a sudden burst of bullet locomotion flattened his
6'5" frame. Eyewitness accounts are still pouring in, but it's safe
to say that while he must have seen it coming, there was little he could
do to save himself.
ATP spokesman Ableton Frushworthy had no explanation for the frightening
appearance of the high speed engine that thundered through Flushing Meadows.
"I checked my time tables, but no train was scheduled. In the past,
the tournament has had trouble with airplanes, but never trains."
Rumors of Foul Play
"I don't want to point any fingers, but I think it was Pete Sampras",
a USTA official confided under condition of anonymity. "Sometimes he
just pulls that whistle and red lights be damned! I always said someone
could get hurt and last night someone did."
John McEnroe, on hand only because he mistakenly believed that Agassi was
still playing, thought the train looked suspicious as well. "Trains
today use diesel fuel, it's so boring. I say, go back to wood-burning combustion
to get those babies humming."
The New York Police Department was called in, but so far has found little
evidence of wrong doing. "We've reviewed some tapes and spoke to most
of the folks in the stadium at the time of death. We have no reason to believe
that anyone broke the law. Quite honestly, I would be surprised if we turn
up anything other than a good ol' fashioned butt whoopin,'" announced
Lt. Kuntryboy Indasitty of the NYPD Public Relations Department.
For the record, the USTA has assured fans and players that the tournament
will continue. "The USTA was fond of Richard Krajicek as were a lot
of people around the world. It is in his name that the matches continue.
He would have wanted it that way," said USTA President Dooble Nabadunk
as she wiped away tears. A memorial service is planned, and a trust fund
has been established for victims of training.
Sampras Trains Hard Says Coach
Rooters--September 7, 2000, Flushing Meadows
World Class Heavyweight Tennis Mammoth Pete Sampras has been implicated
in the untimely passing of Richard Krajicek, but it is not even clear that
Sampras was actually there. Some witnesses say that he was playing on an
entirely different plane of existence last night. "How else to you
go from 2-6 to 8-6 in a tie break," questioned one ticketholder.
Pete Sampras declined to comment on rumors of his involvement, but his
coach, Paul Annacone, spoke briefly with reporters, "Obviously Pete's
saddened to lose a great competitor, but now maybe the speculation regarding
his fitness will stop." When asked to elaborate, Annacone struck an
ominous tone: "This proves that Pete trains as hard as anyone."
Sampras Hands Hewitt Head, Says "Here."
Rooters--September 9, 2000, Flushing Meadows
Lleyton Hewitt scattered liked a gram of mercury onto center court at Arthur
Ashe for the premier match of the US Open's Super Saturday. As expressive
as ever, the wisp of man-child from lower Australia scrambled all over the
semifinal match like a chicken with his head cut off.
Unfortunately for the teenage berzerker, chickens chanting "C'mon
Rock," headless or not, aren't enough to handle the game's greatest
In perhaps his most sporting display of raw power yet, Sampras actually
handed Hewitt his head.
The surreal moment came in the third set. Sampras recalls, "Well,
you know, he was running around out there like a chicken with head cut off.
At one point, the string dampener that I use bounced out of my racket. When
I bent down to pick it up, I saw Lleyton's head. So I, you know, picked
it up and gave it to him."
Asked if Sampras had ever played someone who lost his head before, Sampras
brought up a foe from a few years ago, "Sometimes you had to wonder
McEnroe Gives Head to Reporters
Hewitt's head was carried to the post-match interview by none other than
tennis bad boy turned ad boy, John McEnroe. In a wry display of self-depracating
humor, John McEnroe, who answered most of the questions directed at the
young Australian, had this to say about the match, "Playing tennis
without your head isn't all bad--at least little Lleyton doesn't go around
half-cocked like me."
Hewitt's head was unable answer any questions for himself until his body
showed up in a spastic state and accidentally knocked McEnroe unconscious.
When asked if he and his body should join Mac in the ambulance, Hewitt replied,
"No worries, mate, that's just how I play. C'mon! Yeah!"
Safin Tours Open
In the day's other semifinal match, Marat Safin beat Todd Martin for a chance
to play Sampras on Sunday. Safin hopes to snap pictures of Sampras and perhaps
even get an autograph. "I have this giant tennis ball. I hope he'll
sign it. That would be muy bueno," said the Spanish-speaking Russian.
Sampras is sure to oblige the youngster despite the fact that Sunday is
not Kid's Day, hinting that he might even hit with the eager beaver . "I
like playing the New Balls, they have less felt and don't fuzz up much."
Bring in the Clowns
Rooters--September 12, 2000, Flushing Meadows
Like the bearded lady at the circus or a two headed snake with feathers,
Marat Safin put on a freak show at the National Tennis Center satisfying
the curiosity of tens of thousands of people last Sunday. For starters,
he peeled himself fully out of his skin drawing shrieks from many of those
with delicate stomachs on hand for the US Open Finals. He then wrenched
open his skull and pulled his mind away from his brain and nestled it carefully
on top of his skin.
And then he did something really frightening. He beat Pete Sampras in a
Grand Slam final.
One witness, Maybeline Loreal , was still trembling and appeared a tad
nauseous. She offered this testimony, "He played out of his skin; that
was one thing. Then he played out of his mind. I said ok, he's just playing
out of his mind today. But then when he actually beat Pete, that's when
I started looking for the smoke and mirrors. If that wasn't an optical illusion,
then Marat Safin is a true freak of nature."
A Three Ring Circus
For his part, Pete Sampras decided kick back and enjoy the show: "I
showed up to play tennis, but it felt like P.T. Barnum himself was serving
up clowns, and midgets, and funny little fake policemen. There were lions
and pretty girls swinging from the trapeze. The way he was playing, it was
a circus out there. After a while, I just bought some cotton candy, had
to borrow money from B, and, you know, had a laugh with the rest of the
Noting that USTA President Judy Levering as well as her husband and father-in-law
were on hand for the tennis version of the greatest show on earth, some
observers jokingly remarked that it was a veritable three Levering circus
complete with tight-rope like serves and and fire-eaters along the baseline.
When asked about the youngster's booming serve, Sampras shrugged, "I
signed the guy's giant tennis ball like he asked, but I didn't expect him
to start serving with it."
With the rash of violence leading up to the finals, Levering was asked about
security. "No, we're very satisfied with the performance of our security
detail. As of today we don't believe that the results of this year's Open
will lead to a changing of the guard."
Disclaimer: Rooters Report is a news spoof ... don't take what you
read here seriously. =)
Back to Fanzone