In the second 2012 Australian Open semifinal, we find there is a rematch of the 2011 Aussie final between Andy Murry and Novack Djokovic. I’m 99% positive this match will be less interesting than the match between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. It’s still going to be interesting to watch this match, particularly to see how Djokovic handles himself while actually being challenged, Nole has only dropped 1 set the entire tournament.
If you remember the final last year, you might be pondering my statement above, “…how Djokovic handles himself while actually being challenged….” Yes, I do believe that Andy Murray will give Djokovic a run for his money, after all it’s not the final so that specific pressure won’t get to him much I don’t think . Also, Murray will have some momentum after winning their last meeting – though Djokovic retired from the match after what was one of the most impressive tennis seasons in history. Let’s not forget, Murray added a new element to his game, Ivan Lendl as his new coach. Will Lendl help carry him to a victorious match against Novak? Maybe…a tennis coach can only do so much at the professional level, so it’s hard to say what Lendl will give Murray for a big match like this.
What does Murray have to do in this match to actually have a chance? For starters, Andy needs at least to be hitting 75% of his first serves in. The serves don’t have to be big, they should be places well and he needs to attack that return ball coming from Djokovic. Same goes with the return, Murray has to be smart about returning Novak’s serves, first serve return need to be deep to throw the Serb off balance, second serves Murray has got to take a few big steps in and go down the line, eliminating point progression. Off the ground, Murray has to dictate early, none of those cheesy dropshots, go big and deep. I would caution Murray to not give too many angles to Djokovic, Nole has an amazing ability to hit better angles or simply changing ball direction easily, so force an error (if you can). But really, what do I know? I’m not his coach.
Djokovic, the guy is on a completely different wavelength right now. There’s not a whole lot that can go wrong with his game, he just has to keep doing what he’s been doing and all will be well. I can’t foresee anything other than him getting injured that can prevent him from winning this match. Murray has a lot more to do than Novak does, so I’m almost certain that Novak will keep his Australian Open streak alive, easily. Djokovic should try to preserve as much energy as possible, for if he does win this semifinal, he will meet either Roger Federer or Rafael Nadal in the 2012 Australian Open final, but that prediction will come later this week.