So I'm under the gun with this post because the start of the French is just a couple of hours away! I wanted to do a bigger posting of why I think certain things will shape my quarterfinal picks, but it's a little late (or early depending on your time zone: I'm looking at 2:30 a.m. here!) and I need to start thinking about bed time!
Well, you know what? I will share a couple of thoughts before I put up my calls for the tournament:
• I thought Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal would've ended up on the same side of the draw being ranked four and one, respectively. And here's the wild thing: I was all set to crown Djoko the champ! Once Rafa's in the finals it's a wrap; I think you'd have to get him before then and I thought Novak would've been the one to do it. Now I don't think it's going to happen and he'll add a fifth trophy to the mantelpiece.
• I'm not expecting much from Andy Murray. I know he had a couple of good results on clay the past few weeks, but I still don't think his game translates well to the surface.
• I also don't expect to see the Williams sisters in the second week as I think they both have too many decent dirtballers in their respective draws.
• Roger Federer's win in Madrid was great, but he also broke Nadal's clay-winning streak in Hamburg a couple of years ago, too, and still walked away with the runner-up plate in Paris.
There's plenty of other factors shaping these picks that I'll hopefully get to share with you, but for now, here it goes!:
For the quarters: Rafael Nadal vs. Fernando Verdasco; Marin Cilic vs. Mikhail Youzhny; Juan Monaco vs. Novak Djokovic; and Roger Federer vs. Andy Roddick (yep, you read that right!)
For the semis: Nadal over Cilic; Djokovic over Federer
For the finals: Nadal over Djokovic
For the quarters: Dinara Safina vs. Carla Suarez Navarro; Sabine Lisicki vs. Kaia Kanepi; Jelena Jankovic vs. Elena Dementieva; and Svetlana Kuznetsova vs. Flavia Panetta
For the semis: Safina over Lisicki; Kuznetsova over Jankovic
For the finals: Safina over Kuznetsova
That's how I see it! I'll be back throughout the tournament with more musings!
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.