The Reuters global sports blog
The Cincinnati Masters became a very important event before the US Open because a lot of the big names lost early in Montreal and needed to get match play before the Open started.
How would Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Andy Murray perform? Could Novak Djokovic continue his amazing run of only one match lost all season, having just won Montreal a week earlier?
From an American point of view, Mardy Fish was having the best results of his career having won in Atlanta and made the finals of LA and Montreal. It is always important for tennis and the tennis industry, to have an American doing well in his own country. Andy Roddick, the stalwart of U.S. tennis for the last decade had been struggling so it was important Fish played well.
Nadal and Federer both got to the quarter-finals were they both lost. Nadal lost to Mardy Fish who he had never lost to before. Nadal is struggling with his game. At the moment he needs to start serving better like he did last year when he won the US Open. He also needs better depth on his ground shots and to get back that confidence which he has lost slightly, if he is going to defend his title.