Match of the Day: Clijsters vs. Venus

Rub the sleep out of your eyes, kids! Yesterday was one of the nuttiest days we’ve ever seen at the Open, but nine hours after it all ended, it’s time to get back to tennis.

Later this afternoon, Venus Williams will take on Kim Clijsters, an absurdly intriguing fourth round match. We’re giddy just thinking about it.

Marion Bartoli told us three days ago that Clijsters, back in her first Open in three years after she retired and had a baby, is a contender to win this thing. But! Bartoli also said she wasn’t sure how Clijsters would handle the pressure in a match aganist a Serena or a Venus.

It’s time for an awfully big test. Venus has been banged up this year, and hasn’t looked quite as fresh as she did last year, or in 2007. Also, you have a feeling that Venus doesn’t feel the same way about this moment as Clijsters does. Here’s Clijsters on what it’s like being back at the Open:

“I just felt like, Wow,” she said after her third round win. “Just like you feel like when you’re 14, 15 years old again. That’s how I felt. That’s a great feeling to have, because that’s definitely something that’s always — at the end of my first career, something that I was missing, just the hunger.”

We’re taking Clijsters in this one.

Also! Serena Williams plays this morning--as much as she doesn’t like it–and Nadal has a reasonably difficult third round challenge against Nicolas Almagro. Tonight, we’ve got Taylor Dent and Andy Murray.

Ready. Play.



Match of the Day: Clijsters vs. Venus