Sapakoff: Charleston tennis, by Volvo Car Open or any name, smells as sweet – Charleston Post Courier

The late Richard Feynman, a renowned physicist famed for Globe War II job on the atomic bomb and for pinpointing faulty Space Shuttle O-rings as the crucial to the 1986 Challenge disaster, learned early that names were overrated.

Feynman’s father pointed out a brown-throated thrush. He said it was known as something else in German, and something else in Chinese, and so on.

“As soon as you understand all of the names in every language of that bird,” the elder Feynman said, “you understand nothing — absolutely nothing — regarding the bird.”

Then the Feynmans carefully noted pecking habits and feather composition.

The Volvo vehicle Open is the brand-new name of the WTA prevent on Daniel Island. Some people, accidentally or deliberately, will certainly still call it the Family Circle Cup.

In the global vernacular of veteran tour players, the nine-day Volvo vehicle Open that starts at the Family Circle Tennis Focus along with qualifying suits Saturday is merely “Charleston.”

It doesn’t matter much.

By any kind of name, the oldest tournament in women’s professional tennis has actually suffered due to the fact that 1973 along with colorful characteristics of toughness and fun. It has actually survived a 2001 move from Hilton Head, a shed from NBC to ESPN2 and the retirement of Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf. Adjusting to 2016 tennis scandals (alleged match-fixing and confirmed Maria Sharapova performance-improving drug use) and welcoming a brand-new title sponsor that hopes to include prestige to its brand-new $500 million Berkeley County plant is no big deal.

As usual, some individuals will certainly come for the tennis. The field involves former champions Angelique Kerber, Venus Williams, Jelena Jankovic, Samantha Stosur, Sabine Lisicki and Andrea Petkovic.

Other individuals come for Pickleball Clinics (all of week), Ladies Day (Tuesday), Pink Out Night for the Cure (Wednesday), Military Appreciation Night (Thursday), the Matchpoint Market, beverages on the Grand Lawn, live music and Meals Trucks ranging from Roadside Fish and shellfish to Tow in the Dough.

For most followers — and this event regularly draws from at least 40 states — it’s a mix of both.

So long, Sharapova

Past is constantly present. The Volvo vehicle Open, per tradition, honors former champions along with posters displayed about the facility. Three-time champ Serena Williams will certainly not participate for the second year in a row, however her charity good will certainly in Charleston is most likely to sustain bringing non-sports followers and her role as unofficial WTA spokesperson covers all of tour stops.

Williams at the Australian Open addressed a match-fixing scandal in which BBC and BuzzFeed reported the technique has actually been widespread in a sport popular along with gamblers worldwide. Men’s star Novak Djokovic confirmed he was offered $20,000 to throw a fulfill in 2007.

“You know, if that’s going on, I don’t understand regarding it. … I’m kind of, sometimes, in a little bit of a bubble,” Williams said.

The Sharapova case hits a bit closer to house at the only green clay tournament in professional tennis. The Russian-born, Florida-trained star gained her Family Circle Mug debut at 15 in 2003, won Wimbledon merely 15 months later and went on to earn $285 million in prize cash and endorsement deals. Sharapova lost to Serena Williams in an epic 2008 three-set quarterfinal that could be the most effective tennis fulfill ever played on Daniel Island.

Sadly, at 28 and facing a ban that could last as long as four years for taking the endurance-building drug meldonium, she could not return.

As a WTA Tour player, that is. While top users can easily inspect from energetic participation at this event, several never ever leave.

Agassi and Roddick

Evert won a tape-record eight Family Circle Mug singles titles, Navratilova four. The excellent rivals returned for a merry Family Circle Mug 35th anniversary celebration news conference in 2008.

Someone brought up the subject of “greatest occupation win.”

“Do you have actually one?” Navratilova asked Evert. “They constantly ask me that.”

“I constantly go spine to the ‘85 French Open,” Evert said, “As soon as I beat you. Sorry. Well, that’s a compliment to you.”

“Yes, it is,” Navratilova said. “I take it as such.”

Navratilova and Evert were spine on Daniel Island in 2012 along with Chris serving as a coach and Martina participating in a collection of exhibition doubles suits along with John McEnroe, Todd Martin, Martina Hingis, Tracy Austin and Aaron Krickstein.

Popular off-bracket Saturday night enjoyable is spine at the Volvo vehicle Open on April 9. Former men’s stars Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, James Blake and Mardy Fish will certainly clash in a PowerShares collection showcase.

WTA stars, former ATP stars, wine and cheese, shopping and Chick-fil-A. Again.

You don’t have actually to be an authority on quantum electrodynamics enjoy Richard Feynman was to understand a name of an event has actually absolutely nothing to do along with its consistent plumage.

Follow Gene Sapakoff on Twitter @sapakoff