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August 30, 2006

A cappella groups annoys tennis champ

Newark Star Ledger (NJ):

Perhaps it was the fact that she was frustrated by a left knee injury and a first-round defeat, but Australian Alicia Molik blasted the US Open tennis tournament for having live music on the grounds during the morning matches. Shortly after losing, 6-3, 6-2, to Vania King of the United States, Molik said playing on Court 11 yesterday morning was a "circus."

"You've got a live concert going on with speakers and the wind blowing in your direction," she said. "You feel like you're in the middle of a circus. It doesn't feel like a tennis tournament, or it didn't today. It felt like I was at a small fair or something ... I couldn't hear a thing. It went through my mind that it would be great to have noise-canceling headphones. It was really difficult to think."

Molik was annoyed by a live a cappella group in the South Plaza, which was part of the fan entertainment features at the U.S. Open. She was clearly frustrated on the court and complained to the chair umpire about it during the match.

"I actually told him to turn it up, that I was loving it and it was great,"' she said sarcastically. "I think he got my drift. Until the officials are down at court level on the grounds -- their offices are at center court -- they probably miss a lot of things going on out there. But I'm sure the other courts have a lot of issues also, and I'm not the only one complaining. But it's just fact. That's exactly what was happening out there."

The United States Tennis Association looked into the situation and determined that the band's volume was simply too high, and the volume of all musical acts would be carefully monitored throughout the rest of the event.

"You try to find those windows that might work in between play and you try to modulate the volume so that it does not affect competitive play," USTA spokesman Chris Widmaier said. "We will keep a very close eye on the volume levels so that we do not see a repeat."

Whoops! I guess not everybody is a fan.. Anybody know which group it was?

Posted by acapnews at August 30, 2006 12:18 AM