Friday, August 26, 2011
Concrete Jungle...2011 US Open Draw Preview and Analysis.
Well, well, we are here again, time for the final slam of year. And the draw is out! As a Serena fan, I love the draw! Lucinda, as a Vika fan is not a happy camper! Unfortunately this years US Open will be with out two time defending champion Kim Clijsters, as an abdominal injury ruled her out a little over a week ago. Before looking at a possible champion, you have to take into account to stand outs of the US Open series, this year US Open Series champion Serena Williams (who as the possibility of a one million dollar bonus, if she wins the US Open), Agnieska Radwanska and Andrea Petkovic has all impressed during the series and will be eager to back that up at the open. Women's world number and top seed Caroline Wozniacki has been in a form slump lately and an unfavourable US Open draw won't help with that. For the fith consecutive slam Wozniacki will be looking to claim her maiden slam title and back up her number one rank. Well now here it goes!
Well obviously we have Caroline Wozniacki in the quarter, as well as Daniela Hantuchova, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Andrea Petkovic, Roberta Vinci and Li Na. In the second round Woniacki will come up against Arantxa Run, remember her? The Dutch girl who took down Clijsters at Roland Garros? Yeah, this match up will be interesting! I would expect Kuznetsova and Hantuchova to meet in the third round with the winner would likely face Caroline Wozniacki which would be a good match up! Hantuchova was Wozniacki's defeater at Roland Garros. In the lower sector it does seem to be all about Li Na and Andrea Petkovic who look poised for a fourth round clash, although Roberta Vinci could challenge Petkovic in the third round.
Predicted QF - Svetlana Kuznetsova vs Andrea Petkovic
Two words, Serena Williams. The only obsticale that seems to be stopping Serena from the quarter final is Victoria Azarenka, who has challenged Serena greatly on hard courts before, mainly at the Australia Open though but also at Miami, where Azarenka defeated Williams handily in 2009. The winner of the Azarenka/Williams match up could...to be honest, could face anyone in the 4th round, the seed to do so, Ana Ivanovic has been handed a challenging draw, where she could play Czech Petra Cetkovska in the 2nd round. Cetkovska defeated Ivanovic at Wimbledon this year. The lower section of the quarter stars Jelena Jankovic, Anastasia Pavlyucenkova and Francesca Schiavone where any woman could prevail
Predicted QF - Serena Williams vs Jelena Jankovic.
The bottom half of the draw is very open, with many dangerous players floating around. In the third quarter we have Wimbledon champ Petra Kvitova, Agnieszka Radwanska, Peng Shuai, Julia Goerges and Maria Sharapova. But also includes possible dangerous lower ranked players Virginie Razzano, former US Open semi finalist Yanina Wickmayer and Lucie Safarova. With the current form of Agnieszka Radwanska you could assume she would make the fourth round to likely play Petra Kvitova. The lower sector of the quarter would look like its going to be all about Maria Sharapova, however Peng Shuai and Julia Goerges could both produce tennis to test the Russian star.
Predicted QF - Agnieszka Radwanska vs Maria Sharapova
The quarter is very interesting, Christina McHale and Marion Bartoli could face in round 2. Nadia Petrova and Samantha Stosur could face on in round three. The lower section features Cibulkova, Venus Williams, Sabine Lisicki, Anabelle Medina Garrigues and Vera Zvonareva. It is all very much up for grabs. Williams has not played since Wimbledon, Zvonareva made the semi's of Cincinnati last week but has been less than impressive since the start of the clay season. Lisicki and Cibulkova impressed at Wimbledon in the US Open Series Cibulkova was hampered by injury and Lisicki had mediocre performances.
Predicted QF - Nadia Petrova vs Anabelle Medina Garrigues
Svetlana Kuznetsova vs Andrea Petkovic
Kuznetsova, the former champ and Andrea Petkovic the quirky dancing queen. Petko has been on fire this US Open series making semis at two of her events and quarters in the other. She has played well on hard courts all year with a final in Brisbane, QF in the AO and Semis in Miami. I think it will be pretty hard to look past Petkovic for this match, and well, say hello to your first slam semi Andrea!
Serena Williams vs Jelena Jankovic
I doubt it will be as close or as entertaining as their 2009 US Open final, I do think Serena will win with much greater ease, and I am not just saying that because I am a fan of Serena...okay well maybe I am! But Its great Jelena made the final of Cincinnati and yes, I probably am getting to far ahead of myself and herself to predict her to male the quarters of slam, giving the semis at Cincy is about the first impact she has made on the tour for...well, a while. Serena in an easy two sets...probably two and three or something like that.
Agnieszka Radwanska vs Maria Sharapova
Well I am going to go out on a huge limb here and I am going to go right ahead and say, even injurd and what not, I thing Aggie will be winning this match. She has become a new woman dropping Daddy Radwanska as her coach and she is playing like a new woman. And well Maria is still inconsistent and carrying her unrelaiable sereve, as we saw in Toronto, it can all come crashing down. Aggie in three...maybe but why not play it safe and flip a coin...oh look Maria in three.
Nadia Petrova vs Anabelle Medina Garrigues
I still don't know why. Or who. Or why. Maybe I did this for fun, because that's how open I thought this draw would be? Hahaha, I really have no idea. I suppose Petrova will win, but I also suppose this would never happen!
Andrea Petkovic vs Serena Williams
Serena is just so hard to stop at these stages of the majors. Andrea will put up a stern fight but will fall short of what is one of the toughest challenges in women's tennis. Serena to make her return to slam finals winning in two tighter sets.
Maria Sharapova vs Nadia Petrova