· Unseeded Vinci, No. 26 Pennetta in Their First Major Final; At 32, 33, Two of WTA’s Oldest in Top 100
· Through 10 Days, TV Audience Highest since 2009; WatchESPN Live Minutes Viewed up Four Fold
· Men’s Doubles Championship on ESPN3 Saturday at Noon
The US Open Women’s Championship – Saturday, Sept. 12, at 3 p.m. ET on ESPN – will be an all-Italian affair with two veterans playing in their first Major final – No. 26 Flavia Pennetta, age 33, and unseeded (ranked No. 43) Roberta Vinci, 32, who shocked the sporting world by dismissing top seed Serena Williams in the semifinal round.
The two finalists – righthanders born 51 weeks apart in Southern Italy who teamed to win the 1999 French Open Girls Doubles title – both have Major titles in women’s doubles:
- Vinci: 5’4”, reached a career-high ranking of No. 11 in June 2013, has five Major titles in doubles.
- Pennetta: 5/8”, reached a career-high ranking of No. 10 in August 2009, has one Major title in doubles.
- Head to Head: Pennetta leads 5-4. On hard courts 1-1 (including Pennetta winning a 2013 US Open quarterfinal).
Earlier on Saturday at noon, ESPN3 will present live the men’s doubles championship – No. 8 Jamie Murray of Great Britain (older brother of Andy) / John Peers of Australia vs. No. 12 Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert, both of France. None has won a Major title in doubles; all four have previously appeared in a Major final in doubles.
- Through 10 days (Wed., Sept. 9), the all-ESPN television audience is greater than any US Open since 2009 (combined networks). ESPN and ESPN2 are averaging 1,196,000 viewers (P2+), the best at this point of the tournament since 2009 (1,274,000, ESPN’s first year televising US Open matches).
- WatchESPN has logged 272.7 million live minutes viewed, more than four times the amount of 2014 at the same 10-day mark (up 318%).
Looking ahead to the men’s championship – Sunday, Sept 13, at 4 p.m. on ESPN, preceeded by a 30-minute preview show – will include two players with Major title, no matter the result of the semifinals – No. 1 Novak Djokovic (nine Majors) vs. No. 9 Marin Cilic, defending a Major title for the first time, and No. 2 Roger Federer (a record 17) vs. No. 5 Stan Wawrinka (two, including this year’s French Open) in an all-Swiss duel.
ESPN3’s offering of all televised courts – plus a feed in Spanish – is supplemented by the “US Open Chase Review Multicam” for matches on Ashe – an iso-cam on each player and the traditional TV production.
ESPN has televised the US Open since 2009. An 11-year agreement with the USTA for exclusivity was announced in May 2013. A complete look at ESPN’s plans for the 2015 US Open including the daily schedule ( http://es.pn/1ECwZws ), a look at new technology ( http://es.pn/1MzW0yM ) and a conference call on programming and production plans ( http://es.pn/1PoHn0D ).
ESPN & the 2015 US Open
|Sat Sep 12||Noon||US Open Men’s Doubles Championship
No. 8 Jamie Murray / John Peers of Australia vs.
No. 12 Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert
|3 p.m.||US Open Women’s Championship
No. 26 Flavia Pennetta vs. Roberta Vinci
|ESPN / ESPN3
|Sun Sep 13||Noon||US Open Women’s Doubles Championship||ESPN3|
|3:30 p.m.||2015 US Open Men’s Championship Preview||ESPN|
|4 p.m.||US Open Men’s Championship||ESPN / ESPN3|