The Maleevas still tennising

Perhaps the most prolific tennis family ever, the Maleeva sisters still are in the game.

Youngest sister Maggie, now 44 (career high No. 4) is playing the legends at Wimbledon.

She’s the co-founder of an organic food company in Bulgaria.

Big sister Manuela, 52 (No. 3) who retired in 1994, lives in Switzerland. Middle sister Katerina got to No. 6.

This week, Manuela is hosting Genie Bouchard as “a bit of a coach, a bit of a sparring partner” for a few days. Bouchard is friends with Maleeva’s two daughters. 

All three Maleevas were seeded for three Slams in 1993, which is nuts.

Wild card Muchova to Prague final

Karolina Muchova, under the radar as she made her way up through the ITF ranks, is into the Prague singles final.

(Tennis.Life spotted her at Wimbledon ’18).

It’s her first final, as it is for Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann.

With this and the Fed Cup debut, it’s been a great month at “home” for the 22-year-old Czech.

She might have made it anyway through the qualifying (with more wear and tear).

But Muchova got the wild card after veteran Lucie Safarova, in her home finale, gave hers up because she didn’t feel she had the level to play.

Madrid draw hits FB live Saturday

As Roger Federer returns to the clay for the first time since 2016 at the Mutua Madrid Open, he’ll certainly be interested in whether he’s in the same half as No. 1 Novak Djokovic, or No. 2 Rafael Nadal.

The draw ceremony will will be streamed live on Facebook, starting at 5 a.m. EDT.

(And yes, despite the Mutua Madrid posters, Djokovic actually is playing). 

The tournament streamed the women’s draw today, as well. It had nothing from the WTA’s All-Access media hour as the afternoon – from the tournament’s perspective – seemed to all about Federer, Nadal – and Delpo.

Bud Collins ashes laid to rest Saturday

Bud Collins – analyst, raconteur, tennis lover and friend to all, died March 4, 2016 at the age of 86.

But his ashes were finally laid to rest Saturday at the 175-acre Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The stone is purple, with touches of green – no surprise, Wimbledon colors. 

Memories of Collins’s signature colors were everywhere, brightening up a rainy day as Collins could always do in his own inimitable way.

He is still missed by so many – a tribute to a good life, well lived, in which he treated everyone he met as if they were the world No. 1.

Marino getting help from the sisterhood

Canadian Rebecca Marino, stuck in a ratings stall for the last seven months, produced her best effort in awhile in reaching the final of a $25,000 ITF event in Kashiwa, Japan last week.

She’s been getting help and support from a couple of female coaches as she tries to catch up, after a back injury essentially scuttled her off-season.

Former Bianca Andreescu coach Nathalie Tauziat was there for the first three weeks of her current five-week stint in Japan.

Last week and this week in Osaka, Marino has experienced Canadian coach Patricia Hy, a former top-30 player.

Romanian split: Copil and Pavel

Marius Copil, the Romanian who reached his career high of No. 56 after the Australian Open, has parted ways with compatriot Andrei Pavel after just six months. Last summer, Copil made the coaching change to try to get to the next level. He reached the Basel final in October. “The level of my game rose and we made an exceptional result together, but at this point we both decided it was better to stop,” Copil wrote on Facebook. Of course, this immediately leads to speculation that Pavel will return to Team Halep, as she’s currently coachless.

Yastremska, Svitolina in Fed Cup rift

First, the Ukrainian tennis federation said Elina Svitolina and Dayana Yastremska would skip next week’s Group I zonal ties because their agent was too greedy.

The players say that’s … not really it.

Svitolina, who didn’t play Fed Cup in 2018, points to the neck/shoulder issue that troubled her in Melbourne.

For Yastremska, who is just 18, there’s a complicated story involving her mother and a terrible eye injury caused by an exploding champagne bottle.

She’s playing this week in Thailand. As for Fed Cup, it seems they were able to work something out? We’ll see.

Coco Gauff wins dubs in Mexico

At age 14, top American prospect Coco Gauff is severely limited in the number of pro events she can play.

So she’s back on the junior circuit.

Last week at the Yucatán Cup in Mexico, she and (Hurricane) Tyra Black won the doubles.

Gauff lost to France’s Diane Parry (who won the title) in the singles quarterfinals

It was her first junior event since the US Open. She played one $25,000 ITF in Italy in October.

Gauff is entered in the Orange Bowl next week – the only top-10 junior (at No. 5) on the entry list.

Isner devastated at loss of friend

American John Isner is devastated at the loss of a friend who helped him get to the top.

Former strength and conditioning coach Kyle Morgan, was found dead Monday.

“Despite our crazy differences, we forged an inseparable bond. You were the most knowledgeable strength coach ever and the years we spent in the gym together allowed me to compete at the highest level,” Isner wrote on Instagram.

Morgan, just 35, struggled desperately with a opioid addiction that began because of chronic old football injuries.

His brother Jimmy posted on Facebook that he took his own life.

Goran Djokovic new Sofia TD

With Paul McNamee departing after two years, the Sofia Open went looking for a new tournament director.

And the winner is … Goran Djokovic.

“Uncle” Goran, whose nephew you might have heard of, was the tournament director of the now-defunct Serbia Open.

That event. owned by the Djokovic family, took place from 2009-2012.

Djokovic has been vice-president of the Serbian Tennis Federation since 2015.

And he also is Honorary Consul of the Republic of Serbia for Monaco.

He’s been spotted in London at the Tour Finals this week – not just to watch his nephew, but also for ATP meetings.