I think we've seen some pretty interesting results in the women's game this clay-court season—particularly in the past few weeks with Maria Jose Sanchez Martinez and Aravene Rezai winning huge warmups. Another big event was taken by Justine Henin, who's looking to be this year's version of a Belgian coming back from retirement and winning a Slam.
And I think she can do it, too. If anyone knows how to get it done at the French, it's her. I'm picking her to win, but you'll see some other familiar names among my top 16 picks. Here they are:
The Fourth Round:
Serena Williams (1) vs. Shahar Peer (18) Justine Henin (22) vs. Samantha Stosur (7) Jelena Jankovic (4) vs. Carla Suarez Navarro Vera Zvonareva (21) vs. Ana Ivanovic Svetlana Kuznetsova (6) vs. Francesca Schiavone (17) Lucie Safarova (24) vs. Alexandra Dulgheru (31) Elena Dementieva (5) vs. Maria Jose Sanchez Martinez (20) Nadia Petrova (19) vs. Venus Williams (2)
The Quarterfinals: S. Williams vs. Henin Jankovic vs. Ivanovic Schiavone vs. Safarova Martinez vs. V. Williams
The Semifinals: Henin vs. Jankovic Schiavone vs. V. Williams
The Finals: Henin over Schiavone
Yeah, I know: Schiavone's a stretch, but I don't think Victoria Azarenka or Caroline Wozniacki are match-ready to come through the weaker side of the draw.
That's how I see it. Enjoy the first day of the tennis!
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.