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Draw Analysis And Interesting First Rounders

January 15, 2010


Federer’s quarter: Aside from a tough first rounder and a dangerous Davydenko looming, Federer’s draw looks favourable. He meets Igor Andreev in the first round, an erratic hard hitter who is capable of playing both wonderfully and dreadfully. He meets noone worth mentioning until the fourth round, where he may face Simon, who has given him problems in the past. Entering the quarters, he will likely met either Verdasco or Davydenko, both men are in fine form and should play out a riveting fourth round encounter. The semi finals look good for Federer fans, where he will likely face Djokovic.

Davydenko is the most dangerous person in his draw, but a win over Verdasco is far from a sure thing. The first round will make a few Federer fans nervous, but Federer’s draw is far from taxing.

Djokovic’s quarter: If Federer fans think they have it lucky, Djokovic fans should be praising the tennis gods. With Djokovic not exactly in the form of his life, his cushy draw is exactly what he needs. A semi final performance should be on the cards. His earliest challenge comes in the form of Tsonga in the fourth round. Providing he gets through that, Djokovic should meet Soderling in the quarter finals. Soderling, however, has an injury concern and is no guarenteed quarter finalist. He is due to meet Federer in the semi finals, providing Davydenko doesn’t continue with the form of his life. With a draw like this, Djokovic and his fans must be laughing.

Del Potro’s quarter: Del Potro’s quarter is certainly a step up from the top half of the draw, but with del Potro playing confidently and in good form, he should advance through to the semis. There are concerns, however, with a wrist injury. If the injury comes into play, his draw could end up being a touch difficult.

Del Potro has a potentially tough second round opponent in James Blake, providing Blake can get past an in-form Arnaud Clement. In the fourth round del Potro could either meet Wawrinka or Cilic, but would be expected to get past either opponent. His quarter final opponent should be Andy Roddick, however, Roddick has no easy draw himself. Gonzalez is the other potential if Roddick fails to advance. If del Potro advances to the semis, he should face Nadal or Murray.

Nadal’s quarter: Nadal fans must be crying blue murder. Not only does Nadal have del Potro on his side if the draw, somebody he would probably rather face less than Federer or Djokovic, he has Murray in his quarter. Thankfully for Nadal fans, his early rounds should nor provide too much of a challenge and will give him time to find his form. His toughest opponent before the quarters should be either Stephanek or Karlovic, who square off in an interesting first round encounter. Nadal should advance easily to the quarters, where he should face Murray.

Murray should not be too concerned with his quarter. Until he potentially meets Nadal in the quarter finals, Murray faces opponents that shouldn’t be a problem for his style of play. With his highest seed being David Ferrer, and noone particulary aggressive in his draw, Murray should set up a highly anticipated quarter final with Nadal.

Potentially interesting first round match-ups

Roger Federer vs Igor Andreev – this would not usually be that interesting but Federer often takes a while to find his rhythm in the early rounds and cannot be happy that Andreev provides such a challenge so early on.

Juan Monaco vs Ernest Gulbis
– the slumping Gulbis seemed to find some kind of tennis ability at the end of 2009 and took a set off Federer in Doha 2010. Monaco hasn’t played well for some time and much prefers the clay. Either player could take this in possibly the most interesting first round encounter.

Mikhail Youzhny vs Richard Gasquet – Youzhny has been nothing short of awful for quite some time now, and Gasquet is only just coming back after a long lay off. It may not be the most high quality tennis, but Gasquet will want this and will probably pull the upset over the number twenty seed.

Marin Cilic vs Fabrice Santoro –
I am unsure where Santoro stands on the retirement front at the moment, but this match up is interesting as it could be his last one.

Radek Stepanek vs Ivo Karlovic
– Neither man can happy about drawing this tough encounter first round. With matching serve and volley styles, this match should not only be close but also an interesting flashback to the days of old.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. theslyguy permalink
    January 16, 2010 6:27 pm

    Actually Youzhny played well at the end of the season, winning Moscow and getting to the finals of Tokyo. I still like Gasquet in that one though it should be close. Karlovic/Stepanek will probably be another five set, ten hour match. Whose got time to watch that?

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