So now that the draws for the 2010 Australian Open have been released, we are excited to give you a quick prediction of what will play out in the first couple of rounds.
We see that in the first section we have Federer with a fairly easy draw (that is up until he meets Davydenko) and should cruise nicely to the quarters. Davydenko will mostly likely not have any challenges unless he faces Verdasco, who in the past has only beaten him once. Though we have to hand it to Verdasco’s game, he has improved dramatically over the last year or so. If Federer and Davydenko were to meet, we’ll say that Denko will beat Federer, only because in the last two meetings, the underdog has come out on top. One player we would like to mention is of course, Lleyton Hewitt, he’s playing on his home turf! He should do just fine against the qualifier he is set to face in round 1. Could this be a better year for the home-town-hero? Who knows, we’ll see how the weather plays a factor. Players moving through to round 2: Federer, Verdasco, Davydenko, and Baghdatis.
Moving on to the second section, it gets a little more interesting. There could be some upsets early on, but not until round 2 or 3. We got Djokovic in a pretty easy first bracket, Robredo doing just fine, Tsonga and Dent to possibly meet, and finally down at the bottom we have Soderling. Looking at the possible meeting of Robredo and Dent, we’re going to have to hand it to Dent. After his US Open showing and how much passion he had and how far down he dug to pull out some amazing tennis, we are going to have to cheer him on for this one. If Soderling were to meet Djokovic, I would have to give it to Soderling. His game is BIG and pretty much goes for broke on the tennis court. Beyond that, he actually seems like he’s having a great time doing so. Whereas, Djokovic seems to be angry at the tennis gods when he’s not in control or winning. On a side note, didn’t Tommy Haas retire last year? Why is he playing? Oh well, Haas should do fine until he were to meet Janko Tipsarevic; they are dead locked against each other 1 to 1. Players going through to round 2: Djokovic, Robredo, Tsonga, and Soderling.
Now on the to the third section. We’ve got Roddick at the #7 seed and Del Potro as the #4 seed. They’re at the opposite ends of the section so they probably wouldn’t meet until the 4th round. The only challenge we see for Roddick is fellow countryman Sam Querrey, since Querrey has taken out Roddick one time in their 4 meetings. Though, Sam has won quite a few matches in the 2009 tennis season that really made us think he’s a slam contender (or maybe no so much). Roddick does have the credentials and experience to pull ahead of the pack in his draw, since he’s made the semi’s 4 times in his career, could this be your year Roddick?. Looking at the possibility of DelPo going all the way, we think that he could possibly make it, especially after his US Open win over Federer. We really don’t see any challenges for DelPo in his bracket. Gonzalez is also in there with a fairly easy bracket. Players going through to round 2: Roddick, Querrey, Gonzalez, and Del Potro.
Finally we get to the fourth and final section. We’ve got a lot going on here, Nadal, Stepanek, Ferrer, Murray, Fish, Monfils, and Kohlschreiber (try spelling that, yeesh). Nadal has is pretty easy sitting at the bottom of the section, however; he’s still not 100% on the hard court, so we’ll have to keep an close eye on how his knees hold up. Murray should do fine, especially since he’s set to meet a qualifier in this round. Ferrer might have a speed bump to deal with playing Seppi. The only big upset we could see happening is, Stepanek; he’s set to meet with the big serving Ivo Karlovic. If Ivo delivers the amount of aces he usually does, Stepanek could be in some serious trouble. Monfils should be through rather easily since he’s facing a qualifier and possibly another qualifier after that. Players going through to round 2: Nadal, Monfils, Murray, and Karlovic.
So those are our thoughts on the first round of the Australian Open. Nothing shocking just yet, however; we’ll be sure to give our predictions as the tournament goes on. If there’s anything you think doesn’t jive, be sure to comment your thoughts. We won’t be sharing our predictions of the champion until the quarters…it makes it more interesting.