|Juan Martin Del Potro 2009|
The US Open starts Monday. It's been nice not having a full-time job all year. I get to watch way more tennis than usual. Today we preview the men's draw, tomorrow the women's. As usual, I only list the seeded players that interest me.
Seeded Players: Novak Djokovic (1), Juan Martin Del Potro (7), Tommy Haas (12), Fabio Fognini (16), Benoit Paire (24), Grigor Dimitrov (25)
I haven't even looked at the other quarters of the draw yet, but let's just call this The Hot Quarter. Youzhny is probably the least hot of the eight seeded players, but since I couldn't find a shirtless picture of him I can't make that statement with any certainty.
As for the tennis, the best first-round match is likely to be
Speaking of Haas, he and Del Potro probably both get to the round of 16 without much problem. Delpo has already beaten Haas twice this year on hard courts. No reason to think he won't get the hat trick (showing off my knowledge of hockey lingo there).
My heart says Juan Martin over Djokovic in the quarterfinal. My head isn't fully on board, but I'm going with it anyway.
Juan Martin Del Potro
Seeded Players: Andy Murray (3), Tomas Berdych (5), Stan Wawrinka (9), Andreas Seppi (20)
Seeded Players: David Ferrer (4), Richard Gasquet (8), Milos Raonic (10), Jerzy Janowicz (14), Janko Tipsarevic (18), Feliciano Lopez (23)
This quarter has everything. Guys willing to stay on the court for six hours at a time, guys with giant serves that can almost knock you down, a young American player with a lot of potential, a couple of super hot guys. Oh wait. It is missing one thing – even one player with a chance of wining this thing.
Gasquet, Raonic and Lopez are at the top of the quarter. I can
Seeded Players: Rafael Nadal (2), Roger Federer (7), John Isner (13), Sam Querrey (26)
I momentarily thought about only listing Nadal and Federer here, but two things stopped me. First, I did that in my Wimbledon preview and we all know how well that turned out. Second, Isner has played very well this summer and has a legitimate chance against Nadal in the fourth round. I added Querrey to the mix because Federer hasn't played well all summer and that's who Querrey could meet in the second round. It will be interesting to see if Roger can pull it back together in New York. Here's a stat for you. Federer hasn't beaten a player in the top ten since he beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarterfinals at the Australian Open. Here's another stat. Nadal now has a winning head-to-head record on hard courts against Federer (7-6), but not one of the 31 matches in their rivalry has been at the US Open. It would be a treat to finally see them play there. If they do, I suspect Nadal will extend his winning record.
Winner: Rafael Nadal
I'm going with my heart all the way to the end. Del Potro beats Murray in the first semifinal, while Nadal gets past Janowicz in the second.
Del Potro in four sets
Del Potro in four sets