So the draw is out for this years tournament in Basel and Roger is on court on Monday against Italian Petito Starace. This should be a very comfortable first round match. Fed will likely be very rusty, but he has a 5-0 record against Starace in the H2H and he's bagelled him on 2 separate occasions so it should be a walk in the park.
In the next round he's likely up against Stockholm finalist Jarkko Nieminen (who should get by Belluci), again the H2H which is 11-0 in Rogers favour suggests an easy match. I think Nieminen will put up some resistance but it will ultimately be futile. They played each other in Basel back in 2008 with Roger winning through in 2 tie break sets, so it wasn't a one sided match which tells me Nieminen definitely enjoys playing indoors and it's arguably his best surface, I see the first set being close but Roger winning through 7-6 6-2.
In the quarters it all looks set for a Federer vs. Roddick matchup, this was once a spectacle, but with Roddicks current form I don't see it being too much of a challenge so really Roger has a nice path to the semi finals.
I see Roger making the final here where he'll likely face Djokovic who has a very easy draw, he'll be rusty too but with only Berdych or Fish posing a problem a final berth looks likely for him.
It was nice to have some time off after the Davis Cup in Australia,” Federer said Saturday. “I felt like I had to get away a little bit and take care of a few things. Now my body is ready and I'm looking forward to this week in Basel.
Murray decides to make an appearance in Basel
Just as I was looking forward to watching Roger play for the first time in weeks, Andy Murray had to rear his ugly head and switch from playing Valencia to Basel to put a downer on it. In an ideal world he'll get booed and lose first round. I'm not sure on his reasoning, maybe he thinks he can gain some kind of mental advantage if he beats Roger in his own backyard and then takes out Djokovic. Murray is playing well, so it's possible but as we all know, it's written in the stars that he'll never reach the dizzy heights of the very top of the game, it's fate. Murray is in Rogers half of the draw too so they're potential Semi final opponents, I'm sure Roger will take him out.
That matchup isn't set in stone though, Warwinka could cause Murray problems (but Stan is out of form) but I think Tipsarevic could upset him after winning his 2nd ATP title earlier this month. I certainly hope so.