A lot has developed since my first post on the US Open, most of it simply serving to display how much I suck at predicting the outcome.
The last great American hope, Andy Roddick, made a shockingly early exit to the not-so-great American hope, John Isner. Unsurprisingly, Isner promptly received a good ol' fashioned tennis beating at the hands of Fernando Verdasco. So Isner, the last American left in the draw, took out the United States' only real chance at winning before exiting in the next round (why do you hate America John? Why!?).
Adding insult to injury, this US Open marks the first time EVER in the 128 year history of the tournament that an American man has not advanced to at least the quarterfinals. Great.
The good news is, we aren't the only fading world superpower in pain. Great Britain's only hope (and my pick for the finals), Andy Murray, made an early exit today against Marin Cilic in straight sets. That means that the only two men with s realistic shot at stopping Federer in his quest for 6 straight U.S. Open titles have been stopped in their tracks.
So let's do a quick recap of who we have in the Quarterfinals (Number in parenthesis represents that players seed/ranking for the tournament):
(1) Roger Federer v. (12) Robin Soderling
- Rematch of this year's French Open final with the same result: Fed in 3
- Verdasco is a great hard court player (made the semifinals at the Australian in January), but I don't think he's playing with as much fire as earlier in the year: Djokovic in 4
- This an interesting match...Rafa is, well Rafa so you've gotta favor him, but Gonzalez has proven to be a great hard courter (most notably by reaching the finals of the Australian Open in 2007). That combined with the reports of Rafa's abdominal strain could spell intrigue. Considering Rafa's battle-back destruction of a sharp-looking Monfils in the last round: Nadal in...5?
- Though, in an earlier post, I said of Del Potro, "he ain't gonna win it", and I continue to stand by that statement, I am convinced now that he has a series chance of a finals appearance. That, added to the fact that Cilic has had his fun in taking out World #2 Andy Murray in the last round: Del Potro in 4.
So, in revising my predictions, my new call: Nadal v. Federer in the final, Fed in 4.