Grass is too fast; clay is too slow; hard is juuuuuust right. The last major Tennis tournament of 2012 will be held on the least gimmicky surface, which should lead to competitive matches over the next two weeks. With Rafael Nadal once again on the shelf due to injury, the heavy favorites remain Andy Murray (3), Novak Djokovic (2) and Roger Federer (1). Beyond that, things get dicey. Here’s Flapship’s US Open 2012 Tennis Preview
US Open 2012 Tennis – Best of the rest
John Isner (9 seed) – Ranked 10th in the world, the 6’9 American is coming into the US Open playing his best tennis after winning the Winston-Salem warm-up. While Isner will give the US some hope of a potential home-country champion, it should be noted that neither Federer, Djokovic, Ferrer or Murray played at Winston.
Juan Martin Del Potro (7) – Currently ranked 8th in the world, Del Potro surprisingly beat Djokvoic for only the second time in his career (first if you exclude a Davis cup match where Djok retired) in the Olympics to take the Bronze medal for Argentina. Unsurprisingly, Djok beat him in straight sets at a US Open warm-up, ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Cincinnati. Del Potro will likely play to seed, but it would take his best match to beat Djok on hard surface.
Tomas Berdych (6) – The current 7th ranked player in the world lost to John Isner in the Winston-Salem warm-up. There is very little chance that Berdych will challenge in this tournament, and it’s actually quite likely he’d go out early.
David Ferrer (4) – The 5th ranked player in the world, Ferrer showed poorly in the Cincinatti warm-up, losing his first match in straight sets. Historically, the hard surface has been Ferrer’s weakest as he’s 61% of his matches on that surface over his career (though he’s at 72.5% this year). It would be quite remarkable if Ferrer contends for the title given his struggles on the surface.
Andy Murray (3) – People wlll question Murray until he is successful on another surface besides grass. With his historical weakness on clay winning only 61%, the US Open is a great opportunity for Murray to silence his critics. Unfortunately he did not fare well in the Cincinatti warm-up, losing in the round. I believe that Murray may have had the advantage over Federer on this surface. In order to beat Djok he will have to be almost perfect on his first serve and limit unforced errors on ground strokes. Djokovic vs Murray could be a great match.
Roger Federer (1) -Ranked number 1 in the world and having just beat Djokovic at the Cincinatti warm-up, it is hard to pick against Federer making the final. He is an astounding 28-2, 94%, on hard surface this year. Based on that alone Federer should be a heavy favorite to win the tournament. That being said, sometimes you have to go against the numbers.
Novak Djokovic (2)- As stated previously, Federer numerically should be the pick. He’s been incredible this season. Djokovic has lost the last two times he played Federer and he is “only” 29-3, 86%, on hard surface this year. For whatever reason, I think Djok wants this title more, and he will beat Federer in a classic match.
Who do you think will win the US Open? Let us know in comments!