Fashion Face-Offs: US Open 2023

Halfway through this year’s US Open, I thought I was really going to take a beating in my fantasy leagues. Rybakina, Samsonova, Wawrinka, Svitolina — all knocked out of contention. But then, somewhat inexplicably, I ended up winning both the men’s and women’s contests. (Well, not winning-winning. There were people that finished ahead of me. But I beat the LittleYellowBall followers who participated, and then I got to rub it in their faces. I don’t ask much more from life than that.)

Today, we’re going to do all the face-offs in one post. That’s three separate polls, so don’t quit until you’ve voted for the ugliest of the uglies.

The Best-Dressed Man Face-off

Nominee #1: John Isner

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

I’m sure I’ve shared before that I don’t enjoy watching Isner play. His brand of tennis, so reliant on aces and service winners, doesn’t make for compelling rallies. He moves with a lumbering, almost apathetic quality. He must have a passion for the game, but he doesn’t physically convey it. It’s not easy to cheer on his tennis.

It is easy to cheer him on as a person, though. The same unassuming, just-go-about-your-business quality that makes his tennis so uninspiring makes him downright lovable in interviews. I admit I got a little choked up listening to his heartfelt retirement speech.

I think I’m nominating this classic Fila outfit on its own merits, but it’s possible my sentimental tears are compromising my fashion integrity.

Nominee #2: Francis Tiafoe

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Big guns in a sleeveless tank is a surefire way to get noticed here at LittleYellowBall. Another easy-to-love American, Tiafoe made it through to the quarters before bowing out to upstart Ben Shelton.

Some will say this Nike outfit is too busy, but I say poppycock. I love the rich teal shorts, the vibrant, tropical-vibe top, and the biceps, which, though not technically part of the ensemble, are nevertheless essential to pulling off the look.

Nominee #3: Alexander Zverev

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

I almost made this an all-American face-off with Ben Shelton as the third choice. He’s young and bold and highly watchable, and his hot pink side-stripe was very on-trend. But I keep coming back to this Adidas number. Adidas tried many variations of this colorway on both their men’s and women’s rosters, but this is the only version that works. It’s bright and energetic and bold and surprising while still managing to stay coherent. (For an example of bold and surprising and incoherent, keep on scrolling…)

The Best-Dressed Woman Face-off

Nominee #1: Aryna Sabalenka

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

With her statuesque frame and regal bearing, Sabalenka can elevate most outfits from the banal to something special. I can’t tell if I would like this Nike dress on another player, or if I would find it a bit drab. In truth, the color could be brighter, and I’d prefer a more open back. It’s possible the Belarusian earns her nomination thanks to an overall lackluster Slam for women’s fashion. But quibbles aside, I’d be thrilled to look this good, on or off the court.

Nominee #2: Leylah Fernandez

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Leylah wasn’t on my fantasy team, which is fortunate because she was ousted in the first round. Will she ever again come close to her magical run to the 2021 US Open final?

In doubles, though, the Canadian made it to the quarters, partnering with new mom Taylor Townsend. Fernandez kept her cool in the late summer soupiness with this well-fitting, midriff-baring getup by Lululemon. The mirroring notched edges of the top and skirt keep the two pieces in conversation with each other and makes the exposed middle an essential element in the overall look. (Yes, I know that’s a weirdly specific compliment. I’m setting up a contrast with a later nominee. Bear with me.)

Nominee #3: The ball girls

Embed from Getty Images

Like I said, it was a lackluster Open where women’s fashion was concerned. But I did like these snappy little Ralph Lauren numbers the ball girls were wearing.

The Worst-Dressed Player Face-off

Nominee #1: Jessie Pegula

Embed from Getty Images

Do the people at Adidas have a grudge against Pegula or her family? Do they just hate the Buffalo Bills? This looks like someone fed Zverev’s shirt through the garbage disposal.

This isn’t the first time Adidas has done the American star wrong. Time to look for a new sponsor, Pegula!

Nominee #2: Caroline Wozniacki

Embed from Getty Images

Oh, Caroline. How we’ve missed you at Fashion Face-off.

We used to be able to blame Stella McCartney for Woziacki’s fashion fiascos. But this time, the Dane herself is claiming “credit,” remarking that as a mother of two returning to the tour, now was the time to be bold.

Bold is good. Ugly is not. Am I the only one who’s put in mind of a wrestler’s singlet?

Embed from Getty Images

Still, I am glad to see Miss Sunshine back on tour and playing remarkably well.

Nominee #3: Coco Gauff

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

I know, I know. How can I possibly nominate America’s darling? But let’s consider this outfit objectively. I’ve got no problem with a cropped top (see Leylah Fernandez above). But what is going on with this one? It looks more like a tank that’s bunching up on itself. Every time I see this shirt, I want to fix the front — unroll it, smooth it out, pull it back down. And, color aside, I don’t see any aesthetic correspondence with the skirt. Yes, Coco is adorable, but this outfit is a total whiff for New Balance.

Want to yell at me for being mean to Coco? Keep scrolling to find the comment section…

Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst Dressed at Wimbledon 2022

It’s Friday, and we have a face-off! We are back in business, baby! (No, we’re not. It’s now Saturday. Progress, not perfection.)

Nominee #1: Kristina Mldenovic 

Embed from Getty Images

Before we start, let’s agree on our terms. Are we going to call this top a shirt or a bra? Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst Dressed at Wimbledon 2022”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-Dressed Woman at 2022 Wimbledon

After a brief hiatus, we’re back with our Wimbledon face-off. Well, the women’s face-off, anyway. The men look completely indistinguishable to me.

And on first blush, I thought the women’s outfits would be a bore, too, but on closer inspection, there’s more to like than expected. In fact, even as I type out this sentence, I’m debating whether to have four nominees instead of our usual three. We’ll just have to wait to the end of the post to find out… Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-Dressed Woman at 2022 Wimbledon”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst-dressed at the 2022 Australian Open

Even though I don’t have a job, I still love Fridays. I’m like one of Pavlov’s dogs, salivating at the sound of “TGIF.” And now look at me. All covered with slimy drool. Gross.

Let’s do a face-off. Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst-dressed at the 2022 Australian Open”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman, 2022 Australian Open

My apologies for being so late with the face-offs! I got so wrapped up in Rafa’s run to the title that I lost track of time. And then there was the week-long post-victory bacchanalia… 

To be honest, I wasn’t feeling it with this slam’s crop of clothing. It’s an odd tournament when I find better outfits among the men than the women. But enough about ho-hum habiliments. Let’s get on with the voting. Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman, 2022 Australian Open”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-Dressed Man at Australian Open (2022)

When the first Friday of a slam rolls around, I’m usually hard pressed to find three candidates for best-dressed man. Not this time, though. An hour ago, I had a list of NINE!

There can be only one explanation for this sudden glut of male fashionistas: Word is getting out on the tour about the Fashion Face-off! The men are finally upping their game, hoping to score a coveted nomination—or at least avoid the ignominy of a worst-dressed award two weeks from now. It’s the power of the press in action!

Either that or my standards are slipping. Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-Dressed Man at Australian Open (2022)”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst-Dressed at the 2021 U.S. Open

Late again. But to make it up to you, we have two polls!

A couple of people suggested Naomi Osaka for inclusion on this week’s worst-dressed list, and while I can’t disagree, I also can’t pile on the poor girl. She’s clearly having a rough time adjusting to the expectations that come with being a champion. My heart went out to her when she was crying in her interview after her third-round loss.

So to demonstrate our compassion, let’s pile on other people and see if we can make them cry instead.

Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Worst-Dressed at the 2021 U.S. Open”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman at 2021 US Open

Yes, I know it’s Sunday. Friday is a state of mind.

What a strange and wonderful Open it’s been on the women’s side. I won’t comment on the
results of the final since some people may have recorded it, but both young women were
deserving of the title, much like our best-dressed nominees. Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman at 2021 US Open”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Man, 2021 US Open

Every slam, it’s the same story. I’m completely blindsided by the first Friday. How can it be time for another best-dressed man contest??

Fortunately, I was sent a gentle reminder by good friend and blog reader Eileen. An avid student of the game, Eileen went to the US Open for the opportunity to study the finer points of strategy and stroke execution. So dedicated is she in her quest for tennis excellence that she even shot some instructional video to continue her studies at home: Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Man, 2021 US Open”

Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman, 2021 Wimbledon

Tomorrow morning Ash Barty and Karolina Pliskova face off on the hallowed grounds of Wimbledon. But first they’ll have to duke it out here, in the mucky bog of my blog. Will one of them take home the title of Best-dressed Woman, or will it be the surprise contender who steals the show? Continue reading “Friday Fashion Face-off: Best-dressed Woman, 2021 Wimbledon”

Create a website or blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: