Apologies for the tardiness of yesterdays post, my tight morning regime is only hampered by these updates and punctuality at work is at risk – hence the rushed ramblings of a madman.
Day nine served up some eyebrow-raisers and a mini-classic or two.
Shuai Peng is enjoying her trip to NYC this season, playing some of her best tennis and flying high on confidence after wins against Safarova, Vinci and – last week’s catalyst – Radwanska. Thus the Chinese proved too much for the sensational Swiss Bencic who – understandably – seemed overcome by the occasion of a major quarter-final. The 6-2, 6-1 says it all.
But the 17 year old still won two more games than Sara Errani managed in her 6-0, 6-1 drubbing by one Caroline Wozniacki who is quickly becoming the story of the tournament – Victoria Azarenka’s continued run is a worthy tale too.
The semi-final between the two is a tough one to call – I fancy Wozza in three.
For the men, messieurs Federer and Monfils have looked equally impressive, the former sailed past the clay-specialist but capable Bautista-Agut 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 whilst Gael is putting together a rare showing of consistency.
Monfils is playing some of his very best tennis – evident again in the surprise defeat of many peoples sleeper pick for the title Dimitrov 7-6, 7-5, 7-6 – the Frenchman joins only Novak in not losing a set this fortnight.
What a quarter final that will be, again hard to predict but i’d go with Roger in four or maybe five.
Let us not forget Tomasz Berdych either, who is looking increasingly dominant in his matches, although it can be argued that he hasn’t faced any stellar opposition thus far, certainly no seeded players – not that that is a guarantee of any more of a challenge. The Czech has done well here before, but has never quite shown the belief to look likely to win the whole darn thing.
His entire Slam career record tells a similar story, this year is as good as any to right that wrong, don’t discount him.
His next opponent is the always-lurking Marin Cilic whose five set encounter with Gilles Simon provided the latest chapter in the duo’s book of to-the-distance matches. Finishing 5-7, 7-6(3), 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 it was a bruising battle, the Frenchman had his chances but Cilic stayed strong and stuck to his strengths, it is doubtful he’ll recover in time to face the step-up that is Berdych however.
Day 10 picks
Djokovic vs Murray is going to be a must-see, i’m pulling the pennies together for a 24hour Sky Sports pass right now: could go either way but realistically you’d have to say Djoko in five.
It will be interesting too to observe Azarenkas continued recovery, Makarova shouldn’t be underestimated.
Elsewhere, we can expect a Serena victory over Pennetta and I do think Wawrinka will pull through against Nishikori, but it will likely go the distance too.