There's definitely going to be some ball-blasting going on at the Indian Wells tournament today as the quarterfinal fields on the men's side get set and half of the women's quarters get played. Here's a look at some of the matches:
Jo-Wilifried Tsonga vs. Rafael Nadal: You can never bet against Nadal on any surface (as I've come to learn picking against him at Wimbledon for the past couple of years!), but I'm going against him here. Tsonga has too much power and variety to his game for Nadal, who I feel can still get pushed around by free swingers on hard courts.
Richard Gasquet vs. James Blake: It's big forehand vs. big backhand: Who will win? So far, it's been the big backhand that's come out on top, as Gasquet leads Blake 2-0 in head-to-head matches. This time, I'm looking for crowd support to be a big factor and help James get the win.
Maria Sharapova vs. Daniela Hantuchova: The Undefeated One comes up the pride of Indian Wells, defending champ Hantuchova. I'm expecting Sharapova's streak to continue here; she just has too much firepower for Daniela.
Other picks: R-Fed over Lijubicic, Murray over Haas, Fish over Hewitt, Ferrero over Nalbandian, Wawrinka over Lee and Djokovic over Canas.
And in the othe women's quarter, I'm picking Svetlana Kuznetsova to come through.
An old friend of mine and I used to talk tennis for hours, whether it was our own games or what was happening in the pros. I've started Tennis Talk, Anyone? to, well, talk tennis with an even broader crowd! My name is Van Sias and I've been playing for 20 years now, and not only am I player, I'm a huge fan of the game as well: pro, amateur, you name it. I'll post links to news items related to the sport, and offer my own personal opinion, predictions and hopefully get some of yours as well.