The Reuters global sports blog
Rusedski predicts an unpredictable US Open
The 2010 US Open is going to be very interesting and unpredictable! This summer on the hard courts Roger Federer, Andy Murray, Mardy Fish, David Nalbandian and Sam Querrey have all won titles. Rafael Nadal is seeded number 1 at the tournament but has not adjusted well enough to the hard courts and unfortunately I don’t believe he will win the title. My prediction is that he will have a run but will still miss out on the one slam that eludes him. Federer goes in as favorite after his victory in Cincinnati and wants to prove to everyone that he is still a major force and can still win slams. Murray will be second favorite because in Toronto he was superb and if he can play attacking and aggressive tennis throughout the fortnight, he has a real chance to win his first grand slam title.
Fish has had a great summer winning in Newport and Atlanta and reaching the finals of Cincinnati. I see him getting to the quarters if the draw works out well. He just doesn’t have enough against the big guys in a three out of five set match. Nalbandian will be a dark horse and I’m guessing no one will want to play him. He is one of the best strikers of the ball and has a brilliant return of serve; he could cause a major upset at this US Open. Querrey won in LA this year and saved a match point against Murray in the finals. With his serve and aggressive baseline game he has a chance to have his best grand slam finish but in my opinion, he will not win.
Other players to look out for in the men’s draw will be Andy Roddick, Marcos Baghdatis, Tomas Berdych, Nikolay Davydenko, Robin Soderling and John Isner, if he can recover from the ankle injury he sustained in Cincinnati. World number 3 Novak Djokovic could be an early casualty if he gets a tough draw. The sad news on the men’s side is that the defending champion, Juan Martin del Potro, will not be able to defend his title because his wrist has not recovered in time.
On the women’s side Serena Williams has also had to pull out as well as Justine Henin, a big blow to the women’s tournament. This makes Caroline Wozniacki the number 1 seed. She was last year’s finalist and is now a real frontrunner. She has not won a major yet and this is a brilliant opportunity with Serena and Justine out. Her form is excellent having won in Montreal last Monday. Defending champion Kim Clijsters is seeded number 2 and will be a crowd favorite after her amazing comeback from retirement last year. The 3rd seed will be Venus. She will want to continue the family tradition of winning slams but has not played much this summer. Maria Sharapova is getting back to her best and loves playing in New York; you never know, she could surprise us all and win the title.
Also playing well are Svetlana Kuznetsova, Victoria Azarenka and Jelena Jankovic. It’s very difficult to predict a winner from the women’s draw this year as there are so many good players in the mix. For me, at the moment, I love to watch Francesca Schiavone who won the French Open. I hope she can repeat the same form that won her the French Open. Since her victory we haven’t seen that form again. Serena and Justine will truly be missed on the women’s side.
From Flushing Meadows, enjoy the US Open!