Saturday, September 10, 2011

US Open Report: Day 12

Michelle Obama was the guest of honor at yesterday's US Open as she visited the grounds, hit some balls with the kids, and took in some tennis at Arthur Ashe Stadium watching some men's quarterfinal action. Unfortunately for her, American tennis didn't come out on top.

In the first match, Andy Murray took on big-serving John Isner. The first set was unbelievably close, but at 5-5 Isner blinked giving Murray the break and it was all he needed to win the first set. Isner really needed to win the first set to have a shot at an upset, but when he also lost the second set, it was all but over. Shockingly though, Isner stepped up his game in the third set and with some uncharacteristic errors from Murray, Isner was able to survive to a fourth set. That fourth set went to a tiebreak and with a 13-1 record in tiebreaks in this tournament alone, Isner probably felt good about his chances to take this to five sets. Unfortunately, Murray took an early break and then an insurance break and that was all she wrote. I didn't see most of the other match between Rafael Nadal and Andy Roddick, but the scoreline as well as the first set which I did see made it look like Nadal was just on his A-game as he manhandled Roddick who clearly was outplayed in every sense of the word.

Semifinal Preview

N. Djokovic vs. R. Federer
R. Nadal vs. A. Murray

This is the second time this year the top four made it to the semifinal stage of a Grand Slam. These same four players reached this stage at Roland Garros earlier this year. By winning yesterday, Murray also becomes the 7th man in the Open Era to reach the SFs or better in all four Grand Slams. Three of the the other six men to do it are the remaining players in the draw.

Prediction: These were the four I predicted from the very beginning and they have all impressed at one point or another during this tournament. I'd say both matches are a toss-up, but you'd have to give an edge to Djokovic and Nadal who have had better years than Federer and Murray, as evident by their slam wins this year and their higher ranking. So as of right now, I'm predicting a Djokovic-Nadal final, but I AM PRAYING for something a little different. And by that I mean I am hoping Federer gives Djokovic only his 3rd loss this year. We'll find out today!

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