Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Game On?

The draw for Indian Wells is out, and any way it fell, it was going to be an interesting tournament. So let's have a look, shall we...?
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It is, to my mind, largely a two-horse race. Normally, I wouldn't count Andy Murray, but I'm unsure of where this virus has left him - a virus I think we can probably assume was genuine, unlike the 'virus' that David Nalbandian mysteriously contracted last week during Davis Cup. Murray at half-strength is still good, but he's in that half of the draw with Federer, and Roger will steamroll him given adequate opportunity - to defeat his own head, if nothing else. That said, I like Cilic to come through here - he's my dark horse semi finalist.
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And Novak Djokovic... well, he won Dubai (shame about the field) but then promptly crashed and burned in Davis Cup. We all know I don't like the guy at all, but I don't think it's unfair to say that his game's gone AWOL this year. Added to which he's in a section with the Worm... and we all know what's been going on there this year. Roddick is in that section too and is, to my mind, the one that should come through to the semi-final stage.
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But I'm not gainsaying the two big boys, Roger and Rafa, the King and the Boss. Rafa is eternally solid - he's so tough in the head you'd rarely bet against him. Roger could go two ways - come out raring to go or try and do more of the same, which did not serve him well in the Aussie Open final. Here's hoping Killer Cahill has sorted out some of the demons in our big man's head - but I think Roger's going to do just fine. He's certainly, no matter how he plays, got all the tools to get to a final against Rafa. And then, amigos - then we shall see of what stuff the man is made. Even if he does not win the final, if we see some positive play... then game ON.
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BNP Paribas Open (Indian Wells)
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Women's Draw
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Shahar Peer def. Kateryna Bondarenko, 6-2 6-1
Tsvetana Pironkova def. Marina Erakovic, 6-4 6-1
Ekaterina Makarova def. Nathalie Dechy, 3-6 6-1 6-3
Anna-Lena Groenefeld def. Monica Niculescu, 6-3 6-0
Alexa Glatch def. St├ęphanie Dubois, 6-3 6-2

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