Saturday, 27 March 2010

Miami: Upset-me-nots and What Not.

I wasn’t that intent on posting until after coverage began today – then this happened.

Rochus d. Djokovic 6-2 6-7 (7-9) 6-4

"He picks up the ball very early and he runs all over the court. He was playing really well today, so I want to congratulate him. Definitely he deserves it."

-- Djokovic on losing to Olivier Rochus

A “how’d that happen” result if ever I saw one.

Djoko’s form just like his disposition yesterday, has appeared slightly frayed since the season began. If it has sometimes seemed like he’s been trying rather too hard to shake off an awareness he must surely feel of the built in limitations of the way his game has evolved, it’s because he has.

As to Rochus, this wouldn’t be the first (and won’t be the last) time he’s “Zheng-Jied” a top ten player.

Perhaps not that “how’d that happen” after all.

Henin d. Demmie 6-3 6-2

I didn’t see any of these matches – though this result in particular was in some ways the least surprising.

The Belgian comeback has been slightly derailed since the beginning of the year, with Kimmie going out early twice in the most inauspicious of circumstances and Henin seemingly suffering a similar fate at IW.

Conventional wisdom would have us believe that “cherry picking” your way through the calendar is not as easy as the Williamses make it seem.

To which I say, agreed, though they have been doing it for a lot longer than either of those other two.

Even so, it’s been Kimmie rather than Juju that’s born the brunt of the censure – whilst it’s not been that difficult to think of IW as something Henin can and will bounce back from, Kimmie’s results remain as inexplicable as ever.

Agreed on that point too.

Demmie’s poor showing in IW was perhaps her worst in around a year (sorry Aggy, your win over her was closer in nature to a default).

All of which meant I wasn’t expecting this to be their second consecutive Academy Award Nomination for match of the year. Seems I was right.

Roddick d. Andreev 6-4 6-4

Yeah he beat ‘The Forehand’, but that’s not the half of it.

The half of it is that his section of the draw just went to pot.

With Djoko, Querrey, Ljubicic and of course Andreev all out, I’d say a semi-final spot is now all but a certainty.

Photos by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

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