A quick look at the draw already crashing upon the sands of destiny. . .kind of an odd image given IW’s desert landscape.
Federer should consolidate #1 and get to the SF (the fact that I have SF tickets is secondary, but not really: Let’s get this out-of-the-way: I need a Federer v Dimitrov or Kyrgios SF, badly; preferably an in-form Kyrgios since he’s the more dangerous player, right? Discuss! 😀
Federer does, in fact, maintain the ATP’s top-spot by defending enough of the 2017 1000 points he grabbed here at Indian Wells. Marvelous stuff from the Swede back then, still riding his insane 2017 Melbourne momentum that carried him through the Sunshine Double, playing exquisite tennis. His IW and Miami form of 2017 should be revisited if you’re interested in these kinds of things. His form, only authenticated by his Melbourne confidence, was something to behold during the ’17 Double.
IW was fairly routine, Federer beating Frenchman Robert 2 and 1, needing two TBs to beat American Stevie Johnson in R32, Nadal 3 and 2 in R16, getting a w/o from Kyrgios in the QF (this could’ve very easily been Federer v Djokovic though the Serb didn’t comply with his side of the net vs. Nick), straights vs. Sock in the SF and the same vs. Wawrinka in the final in 64 75 to be exact.
Here’s what he has in 2018.
Federer v Delbonis (who beat American Harrison tonight); and, yes, the Argentine lefty has a 1-0 H2H v Federer. We don’t take anything for granted here, but he should advance to play the Krajinovic in R32, Mannarino/Fognini in R16, Berdych/Chung/Shapovalov/Thiem in QF play and Kyrgios/Dimitrov/Anderson in the SF.
Federer not representing his Quarter would be a massive upset, mainly because the injured and side-lined Nadal would return to #1. Like that. The tennis gods would have vomit on their glorious robes would that occur. Unthinkable.
But stranger things have happened, right Djoker fans?
I hear chatter of a Berdych threat and he’s undoubtedly a threat on Bo3 HC, but he’ll likely have to prove his passion against a Chung who may dig the slower desert hard courts. Who knows.
Shapovalov v Cuevas winner (a one-handers delight) v winner of Thiem v Tsitsipas is some serious futures as 3/4 there will be winning big matches well into the next decade. Please wire money so I can take an extended leave from work, so I can work!
I really want to see how Dennis bounces back from his Delray Beach beatdown. Shapovalov v Thiem would be a Thiem come true. 😀
The second Quarter that I’ve introduced here on the slide has all kinds of intrigue. Let’s go to that top end where Dimitrov next plays Verdasco and the winner plays Taylor Fritz or Rublev (probably the Russian). Dimitrov might have his hands-full there and I like the American’s play over the last few weeks. The tour “think-tank” loves them some of that Bulgarian/Russian tennis they discovered in NYC last September. But maybe Fritz and Verdasco can ruin that rendezvous.
Below that we have the likes of RBA who should be a factor on these courts, a 2017 SFinalist in Carreno Busta, and a very interesting R64 match between Kyrgios and the potentially brilliant 22 year-old Danil Medvedev. Kyrgios better have his ears on straight for that. Seriously. Not even sure how Nick is even playing at this point though I did catch him losing in straights to Zverev in DC.
Indeed, Nick has to get by Medvedev and then Kevin Anderson to sense the SF where I need him on March 17th, in-form to play Federer.
But a lot going on in that second Quarter.
Remember I said this: Dimitrov and/or Kyrgios could get knocked-off and that whole draw is up for grabs. Let’s leave it there. Kyrgios v Dimitrov would be a splendid QF match.
I’ll try to gamble/simplify this ordeal.
Sock is not playing well in singles, so not sure what to expect other than he has played well here, a 2017 SF appearance, for instance.
Tiafoe has to consolidate Delray Beach. I hope he’s not somehow IW-jinxed. You’re better than most of these guys, Frances. Just do it.
Querrey, Pouille, Schwartzman, Edmund and Sascha round-out this Quarter. Sure Raonic is lurking in there, but gets Sascha in R32.
I don’t think Tiafoe has the 1000 confidence, but I’m going to pretend.
Give us a Tiafoe v Zverev QF. Pretty please. Those are the best players in this quarter, but a Schwartzman scramble or Querrey serve, Raonic revolution or Pouille chicken-pot-pie could be in the kitchen, as well.
Wow. I read this chapter and somehow I’m full of hope for the ATP. How?
Del Potro reaches his R16 and plays. . . Novak? Sure. I really want to see the Djokovic v Nishikori R32. Goodness. Should be a 2 and 2 to the other five-time IW champ. Gole! Sorry, I’ve patented that, as well.
This should be a good test for the panty-hose sleeve.
Djokovic v Del Potro R16 could be a massive encounter.
Cilic has to emerge in that bottom teener though he’s apparently not an IW guy. Monfils, Isner, Kohlschreiber?
The ATP likes Del Potro v Zverev playing the winner of Federer v Dimitrov in a sexy IW SF affair.
I like that final four a lot, to be honest. But I would love to see Kyrgios, Tiafoe and Novak make a mess of the place.