By  on September 3, 2008

On court at the 40th U.S. Open, the stars include Rafael, Roger, Venus, Serena and Elena, but off-court, on the grounds of the USTA Billy Jean King Tennis Center in Queens, they’re the “It’s Showtime” U.S. Open graphic T-shirt; Ralph Lauren women’s heritage skirts, fitted polos and jackets; RLX men’s performance wear, and Nike’s authentic tennis styles worn by Federer and Nadal.

A spate of beautiful weather and record first-week attendance of 423,420 combined to spark purchasing of official U.S. Open merchandise “on pace with last year’s record revenue,” said Sarah Cummins, senior director of merchandising at the United States Tennis Association, which oversees retail merchandising at the two-week Grand Slam tournament. By the end of the event Sunday, sales of the Open’s 13 apparel licensees and seven novelty licensees could equal last year’s record take of about $13 million, she projected.

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