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Brisbane Draw 2014

Brisbane International Draw 2014; Federer Announces Schedule

Hey all, 2 bits of news today as the Brisbane International draw came out and Federer also revealed his schedule for the 2014 season. As well as those 2 announcements he's already arrived in Brisbane, done some media commitments, had a hit at the Pat Rafter Arena and looked after a Koala Bear called Tinkerbell.

First up the draw, this is only a 250 event so the field isn't particularly strong so I think Fed has a pretty good chance of adding to his title collection here. Probably from 2003 right through to 2012 I'd have predicted him to walk this but based on form there are a couple of potential banana skins and even Nieminen, his potential 2nd round opponent can't be taken lightly. You can see his projected opponents and the full draw below:

Federer's Projected Opponents in Brisbane

Federer Brisbane International 2014

  • Round 1 – Bye
  • Round 2 – Jarkko Nieminen
  • Quarter Finals – Dmitry Tursunov
  • Semi Finals – Kevin Anderson
  • Final – Kei Nishikori / Grigor Dimitrov / Gilles Simon

Full .PDF draw available here.

Roger is also playing doubles here with Mahut, probably more to do with tournament commitments than a genuine interest but I guess it does give him a chance to hit a lot of volleys with the new stick. I won't be covering doubles here in depth and live chat won't be available for those matches either.

Looking at the singles draw I don't see too many problems in Federer's half but I think if he were to make the final there are a couple of danger men, in my opinion Simon is the most likely to come through that section and we know that he's caused Federer problems throughout his career; as recently as last years French Open in fact which went 5 sets.

Plexicushion courts usually favour the flat, counter puncher type hitter who string at 18 x 20 (just like Simon) so I think he has a good chance of making the finals. There's Dimitrov in that section too who lost to Murray in the final at this event last year so he should feel confident especially now he has a title under his belt from Stockholm just a couple of months ago. I can personally see Nishikori tumbling early but his seeding suggests he should meet Federer in the final.

There are also a number of Australians in the draw, some of the old guard like Hewitt but a couple of wild cards for youngsters like Duckworth who could meet Fed in the second round and will be keen to impress the home crowd.

I don't believe Tursunov or Querrey really give Roger too many problems in the Quarters and the Semi's are pretty wide open as to who he could face, Anderson is probably favourite to make it but if the courts are playing fast I quite fancy Sijsling to cause a couple of upsets as he has a pretty attacking game. Chardy has played well Down Under before too but like most French guys he's wildly unpredictable so I can't really say what he'll do.

Federer Brisbane Press Conference

Enough talking, time to get on court πŸ™‚

Federer Announces his 2014 Schedule

Federer 2014 Schedule

The second piece of news is after delaying his schedule, probably due to planning around the new baby Federer has finally released the events he is planning on playing throughout 2014:

  • Brisbane (30 Dec '13 – 05 Jan '14)
  • Australian Open (13 – 26 Jan)
  • Dubai (24 Feb – 02 Mar)
  • Indian Wells (03 – 16 Mar)
  • Miami (17 – 30 Mar)
  • Madrid (05 – 11 May)
  • Rome (12 – 18 May)
  • Roland Garros (26 May – 08 Jun)
  • Halle (09 Jun – 15 Jun)
  • Wimbledon (23 Jun – 06 Jul)
  • Toronto (04 – 10 Aug)
  • Cincinnati (11 – 17 Aug)
  • US Open (25 Aug – 07 Sep)
  • Shanghai (6 – 12 Oct)
  • Basel (18 – 26 Oct)
  • Paris (27 Oct – 02 Nov)

Pretty standard really but the big surprise was the addition of Miami, I figured after splitting that with IMG he'd never play another tournament that's owned by them again, but it looks like that's not going to be an issue.

Whether they settled their differences, had no differences at all, or now Team8 has launched some restrictions have lifted I'm not sure but based on the schedule so far he'll be playing on the North American clay courts of Slowami.

That addition aside every tournament we expected is on there and the only way that it's going to really alter is injury, the new baby arriving or him slumping early in multiple tournaments.

Questions Ahead of Brisbane?

Federer Pat Rafter Arena

  • How does Roger play with the new stick – will it be easy for the casual fan to notice any difference?
  • How does Roger just play in general – is their a marked improvement from the middle of 2013 and can he kick on from a decent end to the year?

It will be far too early for Edberg to have any real impact other than giving the player a psychological boost so I don't really have expectations on that front. I'm certainly not expecting Fed to serve and volley every point but it will be interesting to see if he his constructing points differently.

I think the 1st Round will be on Wednesday or Thursday, live chat will of course be back so see you then.

About Jonathan

Huge fan of Roger Federer - I'll pretty much try and watch all his matches from Grand Slam level right down to ATP 250. When I'm not watching or tweeting about tennis I play regularly myself and use this blog to share my thoughts on Fed and tennis in general.

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83 comments

  1. Decent draw, Nieminem can be tricky as a first opponent, but if he is thinking big he should be able to win the tournament. I like the schedule, glad to see he’s playing Miami, at least for now.

  2. I know we shouldn’t be too excited about Fed with the whole new package but we all can’t help it, can we? Wouldn’t it be so great Roger starting 2014 season with a trophy? Anyway, thanks for the write-up, Jonathan, look forward to joining a live chat soon! Allez πŸ˜€

  3. Well my excitement is giving way to apprehension now – though I should tell you that’s normal for me. I’m a born worrier. I’m beginning to feel though that there’s a little too much hype over the Brisbane trip – what with koalas, dinners with Laver, fan meet-ups etc. I’m bearing in mind Roger said he reckoned it would take until March/April for him to be fully fit and back in form. I hope he’s feeling as confident as he’s sounding because that’s half the battle. Looking forward to it though, obviously. Fingers crossed and allez Roger!

  4. 2014 seems like a busy year for Federer – baby, new coach and new racquet. Looking for good reboot to the old system yes? 1st round opponent should be relatively easy but 2nd round he could be getting Benneteau, Rog’s bogeyman. Can’t wait for Roger to step on court, 6 weeks feels extremely long

    • Yeah Jonathan forgot him, I don’t know why but I think that It will be a very danger encounter if it happens, I don’t like Benneteau since the drama that he made me pass during the Wimbledon 2012 4th round, and then came that defeat in last year’s Rotterdam. As you said he’s the Rog’s bogeyman.

    • I didn’t forget him, I don’t really see him as Roger’s bogeyman, never beat him in a slam or a hugely important match. All his wins came against sub par Federer.

      Wimbledon 5 setter was more to do with the occasion than Benneteau himself.

  5. Hey guys, how about this for a new nickname: “Fed Astaire”. You know, like the fantastic Fred Astaire. They have so much in common: unrivaled elegance, dance their way to glory and are God in their respective specialities… haha I’m proud of that! πŸ™‚

    • Before my time lol πŸ˜€

    • F.A.O Theo… That is a good analogy! ! Fred Astaire’s footwork is unbelievable, so FED Astaire is a unique mix as both have Artistry of footwork, movement to a aesthetically pleasing to the eyes.Even though its before time , thanks to YouTube you can see each persons brilliance in their respective fields excell over and over again.

      Anyway good start in doubles with N Mahut, who imo is a very solid volleyer and strong in singles play aswell. Hopefully Fed Astaire should overcome his 2nd round aponent Nieminen. And make it 14 and 0 in a row. All the way Fed in Brisbane please. The title would be very nice start to the year. Come on Rog!!!!!!

  6. Season begins, Allez! Though watching matches is going to be a pain, the time difference alone…

  7. Hey guys, what’s up? I think we are all happy that Roger hired Edberg. I think he did it because the name sounds so right, Fedberg !!! Hope they will have a great run in which Roger will win some big and important titles and hope that they will stay together for a long time. But we will have to see that….

    Rafa is sticking with the Great Uncle Toni. Of course smart move, but maybe he will also hire someone as second coach? Like Mac Enroe (a pair made in heaven) or what about Borg (as someone else has suggested)?

    By the way, did anyone happen to see the Abu Dhabi Final? If this is Novak in 2014, then My God, they ALL need to be worried, not only Roger. Man, he came to the net like after every point and did not let anything through. Maybe because of Becker or maybe he watched how effective Stakhovsky beat Roger at Wimby by coming to the net 96 times. Novak made almost no mistakes and again looked invincible. But I am sticking with what I said, Novak will not have a great 2014.

    • haha Fedberg, good one katyani. I havent seen the abu dhabi final, sounds very interesting from what you describe. Novak’s touch may not be the best but he does have amazing stretches so it will be fun to watch if he comes to the net more.

      • Hey Johan, I cannot take credit for Fedberg. Ru-an came up with that.
        If you can, look at the hightlights of the Abu Dhabi Final. Novak was so scary good…
        too scary…. I think like in 2013, he will win AO 2014, then have a bad few months and then end the year great again….

    • I saw the final, and yes Novak was really impressive. But so was Ferrer through out the tournament, he was so aggresive, great to see. The courts in Abu Dhabi was really fast so the players will come more to the net than usual. I guess in Melbourne we will get to see if Becker has had impact on Novaks game, but these things takes time and I predict that not before Wimby we will see the real impact from Becker.

    • I didn’t realise that Abu Dhabi had already started. Just saw that Nadal got pummeled by Ferrer and almost lost to Tsonga.

      But I’m not so sure about Novak’s net play. Maybe it clicked on the day, but I doubt it will be his go to strategy when it matters. In order of net skills it’s probably Federer …… and then the rest… and then Novak πŸ˜›

    • You can’t read too much into Exhos really anyway, based on Roger slam dunking his way through South America he should have won all 4 slams last year πŸ˜›

      • I wouldn’t, normally. But then the Abu Dhabi exhibition is played fairly seriously. I remember watching it when Roger played there, and re checking the calendar just to make sure it wasn’t an ATP tournament. As exhibitions go, it’s the closest to a match that counts.

        By the way, Federer lost his first match to Belluci in South America during the Gillette tour. So maybe it would have been the usual 3 out of 4 slams year πŸ˜›

  8. Hey guys, I don’t know if anyone has given predictions yet, but I think in 2014 Roger and Andy will rise and Rafa (certainly) and Novak (seems hard to believe right now) will fall.
    Also think Ferrer will rise and the likes of Tsonga, Berdych, Delpo and Stan will fall.
    But… I do really think in 2014 Janowics will completely rise…..watch out for Jerzy Boy…..

  9. Only to say. Roger pls think twice about new stick. 98 sq inch will slow more your backhand. Sometimes easy way is no the right way. All in all wish you new GS.It is a privilage to see you
    on the court

    • Hmm… Is there a new Alex in the peRFect-tennis town?? Because I’m pretty sure I didn’t write the comment above…

    • Yeah two different ones πŸ™‚

      I don’t think it will slow his backhand down, if anything it will help speed it up as it will take less strength to take a high bouncing ball.

  10. Katyani, I don’t agree with your predictions. I think Murray will take awhile to get back on track. Djokovic will do really well. Nadal will do ok. I think Ferrer will go down in the rankings this year and Delpo will move up. Stan will do well and Tsonga and Berdych will stay about the same.
    Fun to follow this sport, always something new and interesting around the corner.
    They are not showing any of Brisbane in my neck of the woods. They are broadcasting Hopman Cup. A woman player to watch out for is Eugenie Bouchard. She is only 19yo and definitely on her way up. She beat Stosur and gave Radwanska a run for her money.

    • Yeah I’d agree with those predictions. I can’t see so much changing. I mean who is breaking through?

    • Hey Sue, that is what is so fun about predictions. Seeying whose will come true. We both of course hope Roger to win it all. For me, if Roger cannot win, than anyone but Rafa. The year is long. Maybe Andy will not begin so great, but he will in the rest of the year. Same goes for Roger. He himself has said he will be in kind of full form in March or April. For me, Novak always starts well (like winning AO), then has a couple of not so great months and then he always ends it well. Well as long as he stops Rafa.

      As for the ladies, I think Serena will have a great year, but she will not win all 4 slams. I think Azarenka will do great too and some of the newcomers, the 18 or 19 year old girls….also Sloan Stephens

  11. If you haven’t heard it, you should. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nleyl16Oxys. Very interesting interview where Roger talks about his view on mental training (6:30) and his new racquet (7:40), stringing and how it felt after Wimbledon and how it feels now.

  12. Hey guys, you have to check this… Just amazing!! Couldn’t stop smiling throughout the whole video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXR9c_SksLI

  13. I think over all december has been amazing with all the great news from Roger and his camp, Team8, Fedberg, babies, new racquet and a lot of hard training. So thereΒ΄s a lot of reasons to be upbeat ahead of Brisbane to start. But I donΒ΄t think we will see a Roger firing on all cylindres at the get go. Hard training is one thing and match play is a totally different thing and throw in a new racquet and some new inputs from Edberg then thereΒ΄s a few things that needs to be sortet out. I predict Roger will do good in Brisbane, but maybe not win it. And where I see it takes time to really settle in with new racquet is on the serve. That pinpoint accuracy he has both on first and second serve will take a little time to settle. Thus itΒ΄s great news heΒ΄s platying the doubles to get some serves and volleys under the belt.

    But just to get to see him play again will be a blessing, so let the games begin πŸ™‚

  14. Happy new year to everyone! (specially to Jonathan and Sid)
    See you all in live chat!

  15. Hi everyone, if you don’t know already I am taking over Katyani’s job as chief statistician.

    Federer will play Jarrko Nieminen in Brisbane 2nd Round.

    Federer/Nieminen
    H2H 13/0
    Sets Record 25/1 (not counting 2 incomplete sets at AO due to Nieminen retirement)
    Carpet H2H 2/0
    Grass H2H 1/0
    Clay H2H 2/0
    Outdoor HC H2H 2/0 (counting AO retirement as a Federer win)
    Indoor HC H2H 6/0

    As you can see the stats massively favour Federer, all we have to do now is pray that Nieminen doesn’t channel Nadal (he’s a lefty)!

  16. Wow! Berdych loses his first match of the year. That was unexpected πŸ™‚

  17. Wow, Berdych failing already. Hope he drops out of the top ten (no offence to any Berdych fans). I just can’t stand the guy’s game. Each point goes one of two ways.

    A: Serve, return, forehand, forehand, backhand, backhand, Berdych error.

    B: Serve, return, forehand, forehand, forehand, forehand, forehand, Berdych winner.

    Repeat ad nauseum.

    Anyway the usual suspects are printing a new batch of Federer eulogies. There’s even one article I read that advised gamblers to oppose Federer and back Cilic to win the title! I look forward to them looking stupid after Federer wins the whole tournament, probably without losing a set πŸ™‚

    • Allez Roger……

    • Berdych is mega talented but just a bit of a ball basher, his game is huge just stupidly bad mentally. Never get excited watching his matches, I keep thinking he might beat Nadal one time when they meet but always messes up.

      • Yeah imagine what would happen if something suddenly clicked? That’d be bad… Kinda like Verdasco, he had huge amounts of talent but was a huge choker as well…

  18. Roger just won his doubles match… Nice start I guess.. πŸ™‚

  19. Well, looks like Federer wins his first match, albeit a doubles one. Still, I do believe that symbolically and more importantly, pschologically, it’s an important win. It’s never nice to start your season with a loss, after all that preparation. Hopefully this should give him some confidence in the new stick.

    Didn’t see the match, but I hope he played well.

    The first real test will however, come tomorrow.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTfo8HJCz7o

      Just a minute of Brisbane doubles highlights, but DAMN he’s playing sharp. His backhand return seems solid, and the reflex volley at around 0:17 is unbelievable.

      • Dang… If he held a level like that throughout the match, this year could be great for us fed fans! That was pretty impressive, although just a couple of minutes… Fingers crossed!

    • Thanks for finding the vid Gaurav. I heard the match wasn’t streamed, not that I’d have watched anyway but good to see him on court.

      Looked sharp, doubles is childs play though, so his returns are always going to look sweet against lesser servers. Weren’t those guys the top seeds they beat? lol. More embarrassment for doubles as the part timers sweep them aside.

  20. The bigger racquet head has certainly helped his backhand it has more pop in it.

    • Yeah it looked good to me, returns wise anyway. Singles will be the acid test though, doubles servers aren’t serving as big so easier to take swings at the ball but looking good so far.

  21. Looking very good indeed. And did I see an attempt at a double-handed backhander in there somewhere? I’m really looking forward to the singles now.

  22. Does any one have any news about Steve Darcis? It’s a pity his injury forced him to sit out after upsetting Rafa at Wimbledon. Loved his play, even before he was in the driver’s seat in the match. He just played solid aggressive, consistent tennis. Smart player. He isn’t a big guy, has a single hander, but what heart.

    Waiting to see him back in action.

    In the meanwhile, Rosol vs Nadal at Doha. I doubt Rosol can make it two in a row though.

    • Hey Gaurav, I watched the Rafa match. I feel bad for Rosol, he tried so hard and he played really great. He did not role over. Actually, he could have won the whole match or atleast make it to a third set, but… he didn’t. But this have to be said too, kudos for Rafa for also playing great and winning. This match for Rafa had to be a “no matter what, definitely have to win”-match. Something like Roger’s first ever match against Dimitrov, a match he also had to win, no matter what.

  23. Guys,has Federer himself actually told the size of the racket he is using now ?

  24. I’d like to buy the tickets for the QFs at Indian Wells. Can anyone tell me what chance Federer has of playing at the QFs and if/when he does, would it be in the morning or the evening session? I can try and buy the tickets accordingly. Thanks! πŸ™‚

    • Hi Akshay,

      To be honest I think it’s tricky to say, the QF will definitely be on a Friday but as for time of day nobody has a clue. It will depend on opponent really. So I’d buy both to guarantee it, assuming he does make the QF anyway…

      Jonathan

  25. Happy new year guys. πŸ™‚

  26. To everyone here, a very happy new year. May all your lovely wishes and dreams come true and may the guy (Goat) who keeps us all together, have a great 2014 with a healthy baby and a lot of big and important titles……

  27. Happy new year to all! To many many many grand slams held over Federers head!

    I thik I am the first one to write a comment in 2014 (GMT+2). That must count for something Jonathan, right?
    Happy new year from Romania!

  28. Happy new year folks!

  29. Happy New Year!! Everybody!!!! Hope you have a great 2014 start! πŸ˜€ Take care!

  30. Looking ok against Jarko. Serves are not that good. Backhand looks sharp. Rogers seems to go for it. Very relaxed.
    Some problems with the speed of the court it seems.

  31. Happy new year guys! Looked pretty sharp against Nieminen, may he continue to improve on his form πŸ™‚

  32. Hey Jonathan, I just wanted to thank you again for the opportunity of Livechat. It was fun.

    Ps: hey guys, if Roger plays AO he will be the tennisplayer in the history to have been in a GS in a row.
    I think 55 or 56??? Great record to have right???

  33. Good morning and a Very Happy New Year to all. Great start to 2014 with an in-form Roger winning his first match! May it continue.

  34. Any thoughts on how fast the courts are playing? Serves looked pretty quick and Fed got outplayed by a passing shot a couple of times he approached the net which I’m chalking up to the court speed.

    Some low quality highlights of the Federer / Nieminen match to keep busy until the Brisbane team uploads the full match:

    http://youtu.be/3QmGChQO-ug

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