From now on I’m not going to call anymore tennis matches! First my brackets were 75% spot on for the first round, then things fell apart after that. I also called David Ferrer having a slight advantage over Andy Roddick in their round of 16 match, yep, I got that wrong too.
I’m kidding about calling matches, I’ll still call matches as they come – you can’t win them all right? Despite a cancelled day and then having to go on court for about 15 minutes, then stopping, Roddick played what I consider a practically perfect tennis match. Andy played his strengths, dictated points with his serve, came to net when appropriate, kept his cool, and closed the match in the 4th after being down an early break. Roddick came back and finished off the Spaniard, 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.
Roddick will now face 2010 defending champion, Rafael Nadal. The two have met 9 times with Nadal taking 6 of those meetings. These guys have met only once at the US Open, back in 2004 (Roddick as the defending champ), Roddick took it to Nadal 6-0, 6-3, 6-4, but that was a long time ago and things have changed dramatically since then. More recently Andy beat Rafa in Miami and their last meeting was at last years’ ATP World Tour Finals, where Nadal took the match 3-6, 7-6(5), 6-4. What about the coming match? I have to say, this one is up in the air a bit for me, I honestly think that it could go either way. Nadal is obviously playing a little tentative, especially after his leg cramps and just what seems to be an overall low energy demeanor, I don’t know if Rafa will be able to give 100%. Roddick on the other hand, is still the same player after his stellar performance today, he still doesn’t chase down balls and still slices too often. Roddick is the fresher of the two however, Roddick took a couple of months off to tend to an abdominal injury, so because of that I give Roddick the edge to win this tennis match and reach the semis.
The second of the last standing American men left in the draw is John Isner. Isner took on Frenchman Gilles Simon, John finished him off in a tight 4 set match, 7-6, 3-6, 7-6, 7-6. Honestly, I didn’t get to watch most of this match because I was pretty focused on Roddick’s match, but what I did see of Isners’ match was pretty much what most of his matches have been, big serves and a few ground strokes. John will face Andy Murray, who incidentally took out the third American Donald Young. Isner and Murray have only met one time before, at the 2010 Australian open, where Murray took out the big man in three easy sets. I’m going to have to put my money on Murray since he is by far a better mover than Isner.
The last hope for an American man to win a tennis major this year lies on the shoulders of these two players. Will this finally be the year that American tennis get a second wind and starts regain traction as one of the greatest tennis nations in the world? Or will the US spectators get their hopes up only for to be smashed yet again by another European? We’ll see.