Tennis' final major tournament is quickly approaching, as the 2014 U.S. Open will put the sport's most talented players to the test on American soil. This year's event features a strong field on both the men's and women's sides, but one big name will be missing: two-time winner and defending champion Rafael Nadal.
The world's No. 2 player was forced to withdraw from the prestigious tournament with a wrist injury. He posted this statement on his Facebook account:
I am very sorry to announce I won’t be able to play at this year's US Open a tournament on which I've played 3 consecutive finals in my last participations. I am sure you understand that it is a very tough moment for me since it is a tournament I love and where I have great memories from fans, the night matches, so many things... Not much more I can do right now, other than accept the situation and, as always in my case, work hard in order to be able to compete at the highest level once I am back.
While the tennis world will surely miss seeing Nadal in action, the Novak Djokovic-led field remains a strong one.
To ensure not a moment of the action is missed—no matter where you may be throughout the event—here's a look at the full tournament schedule, viewing information and live stream.
What: 2014 U.S. Open
Where: USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York City, New York
When: Aug. 25 - Sep. 8
Live Stream Information
Full Tournament: US Open Live
Tennis Channel: Tennis Channel Live
If you're on the road or away from the computer, the U.S. Open has you covered with apps for the iPhone and Android:
|2014 U.S. Open Schedule|
|Aug. 25||11 a.m.- 7 p.m.(Tennis Channel); 1 p.m.-7 p.m. (ESPN)||First Round|
|Aug. 26||11 a.m.- 7 p.m.(Tennis Channel); 1 p.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN)||First Round|
|Aug. 27||11 a.m.- 7 p.m.(Tennis Channel); 1 p.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN)||Men's First Round; Women's Second Round|
|Aug. 28||11 a.m.- 7 p.m.(Tennis Channel); 1 p.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN)||Second Round|
|Aug. 29||11 a.m.- 7 p.m.(Tennis Channel); 1 p.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN)||Men's Second Round; Women's Third Round|
|Aug. 30||11 a.m.-6 p.m. (CBS); 7 p.m.-11 p.m. (Tennis Channel)||Third Round|
|Aug. 31||11 a.m.-6 p.m. (CBS); 7 p.m.-11 p.m. (Tennis Channel)||Men's Third Round; Women's Round of 16|
|Sep. 1||11 a.m.-6 p.m. (CBS)||Round of 16|
|Sep. 2||11 a.m.-7 p.m. (ESPN)||Men's Round of 16; Women's Quarterfinals|
|Sep. 3||Noon-6 p.m. (ESPN)||Quarterfinals|
|Sep. 4||Noon-6 p.m. (ESPN)||Men's Quarterfinals|
|Sep. 5||12:30 p.m.-6 p.m. (CBS)||Women's Semifinals|
|Sep. 6||Noon-6 p.m. (CBS)||Men's Semifinals|
|Sep. 7||12:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. (ESPN2); 4:30 p.m.-7 p.m. (CBS)||Men's Doubles Final; Women's Final|
|Sep. 8||5 p.m.-8 p.m. (CBS)||Men's Final|
Players to Watch
Women's world No. 1 Serena Williams enters the U.S. Open without a Grand Slam victory in 2014. She's struggled in major tournaments this season, failing to reach the quarterfinals in each of the previous three events.
Williams is looking for her 18th Grand Slam title, as she attempts to inch closer to Margaret Court's all-time record of 24. During a press conference, via Sandra Harwitt of USOpen.org, Williams spoke of her motivation:
It's always motivated me. But at the end of the day I have to first get to 18. That's been avoiding me, actually. ...
I definitely want to be able to win majors and then just pick and choose really carefully around the tournaments.
As defending champion and five-time winner of this major tournament, Williams has a great opportunity to make a push for her 18th Grand Slam title.
The world's third-ranked player is surging. Roger Federer has reached the finals in each of his last four tournaments, earning titles in Halle and, most recently, in Cincinnati. A five-time winner at the U.S. Open, Federer looks as sharp as ever—even if it's been six years since his last title in New York.
Federer spoke of his level of confidence entering this year's tournament, via Joel Drucker of USOpen.org:
I'm coming in with great confidence. I can really rest now, rather than having to work on stuff. So it's just about maintaining, and that's also really good for the mind. ...
I know my game is where I want it to be. It's about just keeping that level up right now.
At 33 years of age, Federer is seeking his 18th Grand Slam title.
Djokovic boosted himself into the world's No. 1 ranking due to a stellar season containing four wins, including a major victory at Wimbledon. A one-time winner at the U.S. Open, Djokovic hasn't earned a title in New York since 2011; however, he has a great opportunity to grasp another one in 2014.
Due to defeats earlier than he would have liked in recent tournaments, Djokovic enters the U.S. Open looking to rebound. He explained his situation during a press conference, via Josh Meiseles of ATPWorldTour.com:
I don't underestimate any tournament. I, of course, wanted to do well [at Toronto and Cincinnati], but I couldn't. I was aware of the fact that I need to recharge, regroup and get myself on the right path for the US Open. It's the last Grand Slam of the season. I've been spending a lot of hours on the court and trying to get my game to where I want it to be.
Djokovic's path to a final won't be easy, and we'll see how crisp his game looks in short order.