So I'm about a day late on this one, but how about that win Ernests Gulbis had over Marco Chiudinelli? That was a pretty sweet win, if I do say so myself.
I'm always a little wary of foretelling a player's entire clay season by their performance in the first week - I mean, they need time to adjust and whatnot - but sometimes it's just really hard to resist the temptation. I certainly don't think Ernie is going to go on and win the title or anything like that - I really doubt he'll get through Stan Wawrinka in the next round - but a good solid win like this is nothing but good.
We must remember that Gulbis really sprang onto the stage when he made the quarters at Roland Garros in 2008. The boy can seriously play on the dirt. I wouldn't call him a dirtballer - I think hard courts are probably best suited to his game - but he can bring it on the red stuff. I'd give him a solid shot at any smaller tournaments he plays and, providing he gets a good draw, a pretty decent run at some of the bigger ones.
The real test for Ernie will be whether he can upset big names on clay. And well... Stan Wawrinka is a good place to start...
Roger: older and not quite out
6 months ago