Rogers Cup preview
as seen at drawchallenge.webs.com
Should be a great tournament. 9 of the top 10 are here and the rest of the field is great.
Nadal's Quarter- Rafael Nadal could have a tricky quarter including a potential 2nd round matchup vs world 23 Stanislas Wawrinka. Rafael Nadal has won all 5 meetings between the 2, so I would expect Nadal to get throught that. Beyond that, a round of 16 matchup looms vs Sam Querrey, the 16th seeded American. 2 weeks ago, he captured the title in LA, with a win over Andy Murray. He has 4 titles on the year, but has yet to prove himself at the Masters 1000 tournaments. A win over Nadal would be huge for him. He is 1-4 this season in Masters 1000 events. Also in the quarter is 2003 champion Andy Roddick, who has struggled as of late. He lost to Mardy Fish in Atlanta and was taken out by Gilles Simon in Washington DC. He has questioned his motivation and even threw out the retirement word. However, in 2006, Roddick struggled before the Cincinatti masters in the smaller tournaments and then made a run and won it and got to the finals at the US Open. I am a Roddick fan, so this may be biased but I see Roddick making a gutsy run through this quarter. He could face stiff competition from 11) Marin Cilic or Janko Tipsarevic. Both players have beaten Roddick in the past in majors. But being a homer, I'll take hope for Roddick.
1st round matchups to watch- Cilic vs Troicki and Tipsarevic vs Kohlschrieber
Murray's Quarter- This draw has the best first round matchups in my opinion. Feliciano Lopez vs Thiemo de Bakkar is a great matchup of good servers. The winner will face the winner of another highly anticipated matchup between 15) Gael Monfils and Fernando Gonzalez, who has been sidelined since Roland Garros. 10) David Ferrer will face a very tough first round opponent in David Nalbandian, the resurgent former star who is in the finals in DC. I like Murray to advance in his half of the quarter and 5)Robin Soderling will have a tough second round matchup vs the talented Ernest Gulbis or Thomaz Bellucci. I like Soderling to get through and then set up a matchup vs Andy Murray, who lost in the finals in LA two weeks ago. The two have split their previous 4 meetings, but I like Soderling, who lost in the finals in Bataad about a month ago.
Federer quarter- Roger Federer has a relatvely easy half of the quarter. I believe 14) Nicholas Almagro, who has won 2 clay tournaments since Wimbledon will be his toughest opponent there, but he should advance. The top half of the quarter includes a 12) Mikhail Youzhny vs Gilles Simon matchup. 7) Tomas Berdych could get an interesting second round match vs Richard Gasquet, the talented Frenchman. Gasquet retired in the first round in DC and Berdych was less than impressive with a quarterfinal loss to Xavier Malisse. I really like Gasquet to get by Berdych. All in all, I think this may be the easiest quarter for a top player and I expect Federer to make his way into the semifinals.
Djokovic quarter- He has a very difficult quarter. In his half 13) Jurgen Melzer, who is playing the best tennis of his life, looms in the round of 16. But the other half of the quarter is where all the action will take place. A first round matchup between Jermey Chardy and Marcos Baghdatis starts things off. I like Chardy, a good server who plays inconnsistently. Baghdatis, who is playing in the final in DC may be fatigued. 9) Fernando Verdasco and 6) Nikolay Davydenko are in the quarter. Both players have struggled recently, but they are both very dangerous players. Djokovic should advance though.
I like Roddick to beat Djokovic in the final. It is very wishful thinking, but I think Roddick will be entirely focused and needs to make a run before the Open.
Good luck Andy!!!