Aussies at Roehampton Day 1
Paid a visit to Roehampton for the first day of qualifying and thought I'd post some of my observations...if anyone's interested.
COEHLO - tough draw against a guy who's been ranked much higher and should qualify. Coehlo pushed him all the way in the second set and it was probably only lack of experience that let him down. Has a good lefty serve and plays a similar game to Smeets. I felt he needed to strengthen up a bit though as he seemed a bit lightweight...a good prospect though.
SMEETS - excellent win against big-serving Delic. Smeets was unlucky to lose the 2nd set but was solid in the third. He'll have to improve his returns to trouble the better players though...he didn't get a lot into play, especially in the 2nd set. He also didn't put enough volleys away first time, giving Delic a chance at a pass. Got away with it but won't against a better player. Good serve and forehand though.
FEENEY - was pretty disappointed with what I saw from him against Dupuis, who's 35 and looks older! Should've won the 2nd set when 5-3 up. Benefitted from two terrible linecalls when breakpoint down and breakpoint up, but still couldn't win it. Seems to have good technique but lacks a killer weapon and didn't volley terribly well. His serve went to pieces when he went 5-3 up as well...he must've caught his balltoss 7 or 8 times and it wasn't even that windy.
SIRIANNI - a match he should've won against Bogmolov Jr. Was up a break in the first and winning most of the rallies but played a bad tiebreak. Lots of close games in the 2nd, but same story...couldn't pull off the big points in the breaker.
EBELTHITE - another tough opponent, but not a terribly impressive display from what I saw (only the 1st set). He's a good mover and solid returner but doesn't have any weapons. Showed from the warm-up that he wasn't going to come in at all...he only hit a couple of token volleys in the knock up. He had chances to come in but kept retreating and ended up losing the point. Vacek looked terrible for the 1st couple of games, dropping serve, but was comfortable after that. I just can't see how Ebelthite can go any higher...he has nothing to hurt guys in the top 100.
A couple of non-Aussies that caught my eye that I hadn't seen before:
DANIEL BRANDS - the biggest serve I saw on the day. The guy is huge and his serve is a massive weapon. The rest of his game is a bit hit and miss, but with a serve like that he'll be tough to beat in qualies. A mina-Karlovic.
LOUK SORENSEN - very talented Irishman. Admittedly, he was playing a dud British wildcard, but he was still impressive. Looks like quasimodo but can crunch a forehand and mixes things up well...his oppo didn't know what was coming next. Rarely hit anything short. Decent mover and solid volleyer. Impressed me.