Tuesday, 27 August 2013

US Open day 3: Next seed to fall, Stephens?

Upset of the previous day:

Victoria Duval def. Samantha Stosur 5-7 6-4 6-4

Totally did not see this one coming. It's true that Sam recently had a coach change, but losing to Duval who has never won a main draw match is just mindboggling. The American played inspired tennis, but as a former champion and a veteran of the tour, she should be able to weather the storm. Just an overall disappointing match from the Aussie. Particularly shocking too as she had just won a title less than a month ago.

Schedule of play:


Match focus:

Urszula Radwanska vs. Sloane Stephens

Stephens remains an enigma, challenging the top players while barely scrapping through the lower ranked ones. Against Minella, she was absolutely atrocious and only won because Minella couldn't handle the pressure. I hope she doesn't revert to that disgusting pushing play as it will not advance her career any further. Radwanska will be confident of her chances if Sloane continues her lacklastre play.

Pick: Radwanska in 3 sets

Venus Williams vs. Zheng Jie

Venus Williams was ruthless in her destruction of Flipkens, and takes her place as the 15th seed. She will face fiesty Chinese, Zheng Jie, who loves returning big serves. Venus will need to be careful with her service games and not get bothered by Zheng's aggressive returns. She herself needs to return Jie's weak serve well, or else it might be a wasted effort for her first round. If Venus is healthy, she shouldn't have any problems dispatching Zheng.

Pick: Williams in 2 sets

Eugenie Bouchard vs. Angelique Kerber

Kerber's form is in the pits and Bouchard has a very good chance of an upset here. The Canadian will need to attack Kerber's weak serve and be on the aggressive constantly. Kerber's confidence is shot, so she might not be the normal retrieving wall that she is. So, by taking initiative, Eugenie can oust the German and mark her first win over a top 10 player.

Pick: Bouchard in 3 sets

Jelena Jankovic vs. Alisa Kleybanova

Jelena did a good job of taking out promising Keys, and will now face the inspirational Kleybanova. Obviously, it will be a tough task for Alisa to take out a top 10 seed as of now, but I'm sure she will just play with no pressure and swing freely. Any match for her is a bonus. Jankovic needs to be prepared to weather the storm as Kleybanova can hit a mean ball.

Pick: Jankovic in 2 sets

Ashleigh Barty vs. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

Barty finally wins a main draw match as she tries to justify yet another wildcard awarded to her. I was initially impressed by how calm the youngster was, but she was almost too emotionless on court, like she didn't care. I guess she was thrown into the limelight a little too soon and found herself out of her depth. Pavlyuchenkova seems to be back on track, having subdued Razzano. She shouldn't have any problems beating the young Aussie.

Pick: Pavlyuchenkova in 2 sets

Sure win bets: Li Na, Serena Williams, Agnieszka Radwanska, Jelena Jankovic, Sabine Lisicki
Upset alerts: Sorana Cirstea, Angelique Kerber, Sloane Stephens, Ekaterina Makarova, Jamie Hampton

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