It's US Open time already and the draw ceremony took place yesterday evening with Federer in there as the Number 2 seed. As usual all eyes were on where Nadal might land and there's no chance of an early Fedal encounter as Novak Djokovic landed in his quarter. Federer on the other hand is in the Berdych quarter and could face Andy Murray or Stan Wawrinka in the semi-finals. You can see his projected opponents below.
Federer's Projected Opponents
- Leonardo Mayer
- Marcos Baghdatis
- Philipp Kohlschreiber
- John Isner / Ivo Karlovic
- Tomas Berdych
- Andy Murray
- Novak Djokovic
Full .PDF printable draw.
Thoughts on the Draw
First up is Leonardo Mayer who is well known for holding 5 match points against Fed in Shanghai last year before going on to lose. One of my favourite matches of last year actually and Mayer looked like a broken man after the loss. Whether he can cause similar problems in New York remains to be seen but he is the highest ranked non seeded player, missing the cut by just 25 points, so as far as first rounds go it's not easy. Fed actually practised with him in New York yesterday too, probably prior to knowing the draw, so he should have a good idea of what to expect. Mayer will no doubt have memories of Shanghai once he steps on court too so I'll pick Fed to get it done, although the set scores could be pretty close.
Round 2 is likely to be against Marcos Baghdatis, another accomplished player with 20 wins against Top 10 opposition in his career. Fitness and susceptibility to injury have always been his problem and his last outing saw him lose to Pierre Hughes Herbert in Winstom Salem earlier this week. Fed leads the H2H 7-1 with the Cyrpriot winning his only match at Indian Wells in 2010 but he has taken a set off Federer at the US Open in 2004.
Into the third round and the projected opponent is Philipp Kohlschreiber. Fed has a 9-0 H2H record against him and the German opted to play Kitzbuhel (which he won) instead of most of the US Open Series before crashing out in the first round of Cincinnati. Another solid player on his day but Fed clearly has the edge.
The fourth round could be an interesting one against either Ivo Karlovic or John Isner. Both those guys don't have much opposition prior to their third round clash so it's tough to see one them not being Federer's fourth round opponent. Fed's record against big servers is imperious so whilst it could be a nervy one you'd again back him to come through.
The Quarters sees Berdych as the seeded opponent, he of course beat Fed handily at the US Open in 2012 but I'm not sure he will make it that far. I like Kudla's chances of beating him and even after that both Gasquet and Tomic could cause him problems.
Semis is then Murray or Stan but there's no point really looking into those matches nor is the one step further which looks pretty likely to be Djokovic. On the whole it's a pretty balanced draw but there's no real point looking too far ahead. Fed's New York record of late isn't the best and his first task is taking care of Mayer. One match at a time 😉
Elsewhere in the Draw
Looking at the draw, Djoker seems to have come out best, on paper at least, with no real huge tests prior to a potential Quarter Final against Nadal. Nadal has Coric first up which could be interesting and then Raonic could be his fourth round opponent. Not sure on Raonic's form though as he's struggled after coming back from injury in recent weeks.
Murray has drawn Kyrgios in the first round which is probably the most exciting tie. It's a nightmare matchup for Kyrgios though so I doubt it lives up to the billing in terms of tennis. Maybe we'll get some sledging though 😆
Wawrinka, who I think could do pretty well here, will face Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the first round. He could also meet Gilles Simon in the fourth round who is a bit of bogey player for him. If he comes through that then he's well and truly into the tournament where he becomes very dangerous.
Interesting First Round Matches
- Murray vs. Kyrgios
- Nadal vs. Coric
- Verdasco vs. Haas
- Federer vs. Mayer
- Kudla to take out Berdych
- Chardy to take out Ferrer
- Gulbis to make the Fourth Round
- Tomic or Gasquet to make the Quarter Final