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Todd’s Tennis Takes – Pre Monte Carlo Update

This is a great part of the tennis season, when Masters Series Events come every few weeks and then we culminate with the French, only to be at Wimby a month later…Ryan Sweeting has capped an impressive 1st quarter 2011 with his first title over fast rising Japanese 21 yr old Kei Nishikori on the clay in Houston…Sweeting has qualified a tour leading 5 times this year. There was another 1st time winner this weekend, Pablo Andujar in Casablanca, over Potito Starace…yet another Spaniard in the top 100, Andujar is 25 and has been stealthily rising for a few years now.

The main story of the tour post Aussie, Djoker’s 2nd major, has been Djoker, winning his first 24 matches of the year, beating Nadal twice in Masters finals…but then pulling out of Monte Carlo with a random knee injury…hope it’s not serious.

Another big story at the Aussie and afterwards has been the tall young Canadian Milos Raonic, who had a great final against Roddick at Memphis before losing in 3 sets on the incredible, diving, Roddick tournament winning shot.

And then there’s Andy Murray, who after failing to win a single set in a slam final for a 3rd time has hit what is likely (hopefully?) rock bottom, losing his 1st match at both Masters Events to two different 100+ ranked players – Donald Young and Alex Bogomolov Jr., after losing in straight sets to Bags in Rotterdam post Aussie…he hasn’t won a single set since the semis of the Aussie. 

Dolgopolov has kept up his strong play after his QF appearance in Australia, losing the finals of Costa Do Sauipe in Brazil to Almagro in straight sets, semis to Ferrer in Acapulco, and then to clearly superior talents at the Masters events, Del Potro (Indian Wells) and Nadal (Mia). Unfortunately he derailed here in Monte Carlo, losing early to the longtime enigma Ernests Gulbis 6-1, 6-4…I was so sold on Gulbis’ talent, but wonder if that head will ever be able to hold up under pressure. A very frustrating result here, wanting to see the mercurial, whimsical talent of Dolgop moreso than the more powerful, maybe equally amazing, but more erratic Gulbis. Gulbis gets Raonic next after the Canadian beat Llodra in 3…that should be a test.

Also at Monte Carlo, Fed is slated to meet Almagro in the Round of 16, where I could see the Spanish clay expert being very confident and aggressive…hope we get that match. Gasquet gets Istomin 1st round, a tough 24 yr old from Uzbekistan who rose from 102 to 40 in 2010. Potentially a tough test for the Frenchman trying to reclaim a spot in the top 10 again, currently 18th.


One Response to “Todd’s Tennis Takes – Pre Monte Carlo Update”

  1. […] Todd's Tennis Takes – Pre Monte Carlo Update « SPDBRNR – Eyes Wide … Tagged with: come-every • events • few-weeks • french • great-part • […]

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