Thursday, 8 September 2011

USO: Ready,Set, Draw…

The last few weeks have been puzzling to put it mildly.

I haven’t been especially involved, but it seems we’ve stumbled into a strangely post-Fedal world, one in which Caro gets McHaled (twice), Mardy Fish wins the USO Series with relative ease and JJ….wins tennis matches. Yes that last one seems to get everyone to sit up and gape.
Even Novak Djokovic finally came unstuck in Cincy last week.

All of which is to say, I don’t claim to understand any of it. And I don’t believe anyone that claims to either.

Even so, there’s that small matter of the last Grand Slam of the year.

I’m in the midst of what I’d call one of life’s little crises right now – as such it’s very unlikely that I’ll be posting until the end of the first week, if that.

Until then. Enjoy.





Nole Fed Isner ARod
Janko Tsonga Murray Rafa





Caro Serena Kerber Sam
Petko Pavs Flav Bepa





Sympathy Vote

Ideas above their station



-- Death and Taxes: Serena appears in Vika’s quarter. Not only that, but as an extra little treat from the draw faeries this year, the two will probably meet in R3. Huh.

-- Death and Taxes: Fed gets Nole in the SFs.

-- Feel free to disagree, but I also say Fed drew the shortest straw: Bella in R2, one of Bernie,Ryan or Marin in R3 and an almost certain QF date with one of Tsonga/Fish – that would be two of the hottest players on tour right now.

-- Obvious really, but having been “McHaled” twice recently and having only just signed on Coach ‘X’ (the identity of whom remains classified), Caro being upset before the semis would be of surprise to precisely no one.

-- Admit it: Rafa’s draw says less about his prospects as does his own lack of form right now. The way things are looking, its not a stretch to think Ferru could come through in this section.

-- A lot of people seem to think Pova’s gonna struggle. That’s almost certainly true. But it’s not because of who/what is in her draw. To be honest, her biggest pre-QF threat is probably Peng, and I can see her toughing that one out, seeing as toughing-out is pretty much what constitutes her A-game these days. Also, its pre-eminently possible Petra won’t survive into the QFs, so….

-- Wasn’t filled with confidence by Nole’s retirement in Cincy. I’m almost conceiving of an upset or, you know, that old-fashioned thing they call “getting beaten by a better player on the day”. Even so, with Tomas as his biggest threat, it’d be shocking to see him not make the SFs.


-- Remember him? Good. He’s the guy that put an end to Rogers 23 GS SF streak and Rafa’s unbeaten run at RG – two of the biggest streaks the sport’s seen. Bo Carl makes his first appearance on a tennis court since winning Bastad in early July. *RAWR*. He beat a certain Daveed Ferrer in the final there that day – the same guy that’s just usurped his #5 spot. He comes in with practically zero match play. As always with Bo, expect anything, everything and nothing at all.

-- Expect very little from Li and Petra.

-- Bepa’s section confuses the hell out of me. On the one hand, Domi, Venus and Sabine could all flake-out making Bepas route through to the QFs that much cleaner. Or they might do that thing where they all come to play tennis at the same time in which case your guess is as good as mine. In any case, consider this the most “happening” section of the draw.

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