Ana Ivanovic, Novak Djokovic and Fernando Verdasco will face a rough draw coming to the Ultimate Hardcourt Grand Slam of the year. Ana Ivanovic is scheduled to face WTA 51st Kateryna Bondarenko of Ukraine in the first round. Just recently, Bondarenko outplayed the five-times-Wimbledon-Champion (Venus Williams) in Roger’s Cup in Toronto 1-6, 7-5, 6-4.
What are her chances?
Ana Ivanovic is having a tough 2009. She has only booked an award ceremony appearance once, back in BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells where Vera Zvonereva outlasted her in straights sets 6-7, 2-6. Since then, the young and beautiful Serb couldn’t make it on the last eight and all early exits in her warm-up tournaments prior to Roland Garros, Wimbledon and US Open.
Yet, the race is not finished yet. When everyone expected a first round exit, Ana Ivanovic cruised into the fourth round of Roland Garros and Wimbledon defeating the likes of Sara Errani (Italy) and Samantha Stosur (Australia). These two grand slams are played in different surfaces and I see no rational reasons why she can’t make a repeat in Hardcourt Grand Slam. If history repeats itself and Ivanovic is ousted in the second round, like in 2008, blame it on her confidence and self-belief.
While Ana is having troubles, Novak Djokovic has also downslides this 2009. Before entering Roland Garros and ousted in the third round, Nole climbed down the ATP Rankings by a notch (No. 4 now). Yet, the Australian Open 2008 Champion sticks to his “MIRACLE GAMEPLAN” to win in Serbia (straight sets win over Lukasz Kubot). Nole was also a finalist in five ATP Tournaments (Miami, Monte Carlo, Rome, Halle and Cincinnati).
What are his chances?
Anything can happen to Novak Djokovic coming to US Open 2009. Nole will face the ATP 50th Ivan Ljubicic who he defeated in three meetings. There will be a little scare in the fourth round as the Serb faces the Germany’s Rising Star, Philipp Kohlschreiber– he is the man who maimed Nole in Roland Garros 2009 (4-6, 4-6, 4-6). If he remains motivated and those fibers of luck side with him, Nole will meet Andy Roddick or Fernando Verdasco in the last eight and Roger Federer in the semis.
Not probably great as Federer, Novak Djokovic still deserves another Grand Slam Win under his watch and that’s only possible if his confidence helps him get through the big names.
After shocking the world with a semi appearance in 2009 Australian Open, Fernando Verdasco is without a doubt one of the forces to reckon with in the ATP World if only he doesn’t allow his lack of concentration to devour him during the match. I understand it’s already a complete different feeling standing and running at the center of a stadium but, if not injured or continue to play like a winner, Fernando Verdasco got what it takes to defeat or lose to anyone.
Verdasco didn’t drop a set in Pilot Pen before wrapping a win over America’s Next Best Thing, Sam Querrey (6-4, 7-6). The final score was almost a scare but nevermind the what-ifs and the what-should-have-been, Verdasco won and survived.
Verdasco’s best singles-record in US Open 2009 is fourth round, just like Ana Ivanovic. The Spaniard’s level of confidence might be a little high at this moment and ideally, I want to see him in quarters with Nole. May the best hardcourt player wins and will face Roger Federer. Novak Djokovic and Fernando Verdasco produced some of the best tennis rally this 2009, remember the Monte Carlo Clash.
Who wins US Open 2009?
It is complicated to pick a clear-cut winner at this early stage. As expected, Roger Federer is the big favorite by the ESPN Experts. Of course, the Swiss was the last man standing here in five consecutive times. Federer is an all-court player. He plays fantastic in Wimbledon (6 wins) and achieve his first big win in clay this year.
Yet, if something unexpected will happen, just like in Roland Garros 2009 where Rafael Nadal was ousted by Swede (Robin Soderling) in fourth round, Andy Roddick or Andy Murray can win this Slam.
Andy Roddick deserves another Grand Slam Win and that’s clearly possible if he consistently threaten his opponents with his big aces and forehands. A-Rod is named as the great server and playing great tennis can always start with an explosive serve.
Andy Murray achieved the ideal weight he needs, he trains hard, he knocked off Rafael Nadal from Number 2 in the world and the pressure on his back to win a Slam is high. This 2009, the Brit won ExxonMobil Open, World Tennis Tournament, Sony Ericsson Open, AEGON Championships and Rogers Cup. These records are nothing coming to a Grand Slam, yes, but this is what Murray said in an interview by TIMESONLINE.
“What hasn’t been a problem for me is believing I can win. You can’t go in thinking, ‘I’m just going to give it my best shot and see what happens.’ That’s not enough, an attitude where you just go for it and don’t worry about the result. When I go against them I worry a lot about the result because it’s a huge match for me.”
In women’s side, it is Serena or Venus? Serena Williams is the defending champion and she’s a hardcourt player compared to Venus. Elena Dementieva won the Rogers Cup and that probably makes her a threat. Dementieva was the silent threat in Wimbledon 2009 and almost outplayed Serena in the semis.
Not sure with Dinara Safina though. She’s probably making the finals for the second time this year and lose or, win. It’s hard to tell. Or, something very unexpected happens and Caroline Wozniacki, Agniezska Radswanka, Jelena Jankovic or Ana Ivanovic wins, who knows?