Archive for 2014|Yearly archive page

Well I Guess I’m Going to Have to Watch All of These Great Matches

In Uncategorized on January 16, 2014 at 3:06 pm

Get out your DVR (or ESPN3 if you’re under 30):

  • #1 Rafael Nadal vs. #25 Gael Monfils: The always electric Monfils definitely has the skill to take a set off Rafa. Maybe.
  • Donald Young vs. #16 Kei Nishikori: Great to see Young into the third round and it’s always great seeing Nishikori take the court.
  • #11 Milos Roanic vs. #22 Grigor Dimitrov: Big server, baby Fed.
  • #10 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs. #18 Gilles Simon: Tsonga doit gagner cette bataille des Français.
  • Teymuraz Gabashvili vs. #6 Roger Federer: Best name in tennis vs. best tennis name.
  • #7 Tomas Berdych vs. Damir Dzumhur: I’ve never heard of Mr. Dzumhur and I can’t even identify what country he plays for (BIH?), so I’m taking the giant Czech in straight sets.
  • #19 Kevin Anderson vs. Edouard Roger-Vasselin: Although this match lacks star power, Kevin Anderson is a deadly player that’s bound to show up in the quarters or even semis one of these days. Get on the bandwagon early, I say.
  • #8 Stanislas Wawrinka vs. #28 Vasek Pospisil: Stanislas Wawrinka is in this match.
  • #17 Tommy Robredo vs. #9 Richard Gasquet: This is my pick for grueling five-setter. Gasquet is playing some of the best tennis of his career but Robredo is a top-tier player who’s been in good form lately as well.

Feast and Famine in the 2014 Australian Open Draw

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2014 at 8:18 pm

Welcome back to the ATP tour.  In case you missed it, Jack Sock and Sloane Stephens became tennis’s version of Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez, Caroline Wozniaki agreed to marry Rory – as soon as he turns 18, of course – and Roger Federer switched to a geriatric-sized 98 square-inch framed racket (either he needs a bigger sweet-spot, or his eyesight is going).  But no ordinary water cooler gossip compares to the drama of the year’s first Grand Slam draw, announced yesterday in Melbourne.

At first glance, the draw seems stacked in favor of three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic, who may not meet a seeded player until the quarter finals, while Rafael Nadal must run the gauntlet of Bernard Tomic, Gael Monfils (25), Leyton Hewitt, Kei Nishikori (16), and Juan Martin Del Potro (5) in his quarter.  But if the draw truly favors anyone, it is the fans, as numerous compelling matchups loom in the first four rounds alone.  With the first matches just three days away, here are some story lines created by the draw, and my humble predictions for the outcome …Full Story

#1 Rafael Nadal is Extraordinary

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Rafael Nadal did not play in the 2013 Australian Open.


That fact, listed above, is just one of many factors that makes Rafael Nadal’s #1 ranking extraordinary. Nadal’s 2013 performance is so unbelievable as to border on absurd.

Nadal started the year at a small tournament in Chile where he lost [sic] to Horacio Zeballos.From that point on, he won Sao Paulo by beating David Nalbandian on clay, Acapulco by defeating Almagro and Ferrer, on clay, Indian Wells by taking down Roger Federer, Tomas Berdych, and Juan Martin Del Potro on hard court. Nadal finally lost to then #1 Djokovic on clay at Monte Carlo, but not before beating the surging Philipp Kohlschreiber, baby-Fed Grigor Dimitrov, and the always dangerous Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Nadal’s torment of the clay-court season continued in Barcelona, Madrid, Rome, and of course Roland Garros …Full Story

Step Right Up to the #4 Andy Murray Roller Coaster Ride

In Uncategorized on January 11, 2014 at 3:26 pm

Andy Murray took out Robin Haase, Joao Sousa, Ricardas Berankis, Gilles Simon, Jeremy Chardy, and Roger Federer before losing in the final to Novak Djokovic 7-6(2), 6-7(3), 3-6, 2-6.

Murray Scowl

Murray’s 2013 was a rollercoaster if nothing else. After losing in an Australian Open final that paled in comparison to the 2012 epic, Murray won the Miami masters before going on a string of disappointing clay-court appearances. He lost to Wawrinka in Monte Carlo and Berdych in Madrid, both in straight sets, before hitting rock bottom in Rome when he retired in a match against Marcel Granollers …Full Story

On Time and #6 Roger Federer

In Uncategorized on January 7, 2014 at 3:55 pm

In 2013, facing a tough Australian Open draw, Roger Federer defeated Benoit Paire, Nikolay Davydenko, Bernard Tomic, Milos Raonic, and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, ultimately falling to Andy Murray 4-6, 7-6(5), 3-6, 7-6(2), 2-6.


Tennis has a unique relationship with time. Strokes are perhaps tennis’ most fundamental discrete unit of time, building blocks to any other conception we can conceive of. Points, one level up, contain one or more strokes. From there, we measure matches in games, in sets, in deuces, with game clocks. Each of these concrete components has a winner and a loser, building toward an ever more definitive measure of such …Full Story

Can #7 Thomas Berdych Overcome His Rafa Problem?

In Uncategorized on January 7, 2014 at 10:38 am

In the 2013 Australian Open, Czech player Tomas Berdych defeated Michael Russell (USA), Guillaume Rufin (FRA), Jurgen Melzer (AUT), and Kevin Anderson (RSA) en route to a quarter-finals loss to Novak Djokovic, 1-6, 6-4, 1-6, 4-6.


Tomas Berdych has proved throughout his career that he is capable of playing the upsetter, and 2014 may prove to be his best year to date. In 2013, the 6 foot 5 inch Czech tallied wins against Novak Djokovic (ATP Masters 1000 in Rome), Andy Murray (Masters 1000s in both Cincinnati and Madrid), and Roger Federer (Dubai).

So what can we expect from Berdych at the Australian Open? …Full Story