The French Open draw is out, and a possible rematch Madrid rematch between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal looks possible. I think.
But both Federer and Nadal are stuck with the brunt of dangerous dirtballers.
In Federer’s quarters, there’s Stan Wawrinka, Gael Monfils, Marin Cilic, Albert Montanes, Robin Soderling and one Ernests Gulbis. Federer should coast early then run into Wawrinka in the fourth round with another showdown with Gulbis in the quarterfinals or Soderling could await.
Andy Murray is seeded to meet Federer in the top half semifinals but the Brit’s a longshot, and perhaps a longshot just to emerge out of the first round. The fourth-seeded Murray opens against local favorite Richard Gasquet and then could meet Tomas Berdych in the fourth round before JW Tsonga in the quarterfinals. In a wide open section I’d rate Tsonga as the favorite.
Novak Djokovic and Andy Roddick have wound up in the same quarter of a Slam draw yet again. But I doubt they meet this time. Roddick, who hasn’t played a clay match this year, has a brutal road with Jarkko Nieminen, then Eduard Schwank The Tank with Juan Monaco and David Ferrer ahead. Djokovic opens with the hard-hitting Evgeny Koralev but should come through. Djokovic does has a good draw out the quarter but the Serb;s health is still a question mark.
In the final quarter Nadal will have to contend with Fernando Verdasco, Fernando Gonzalez, Nicolas Almagro and Tomaz Bellucci. The four-time champ figures to get through to Bellucci in the fourth round, and then I think he’ll be in for a tough battle against Verdasco. I think Verdasco has a pretty good road out the quarters.
To me, Federer and NAdal’s quarters are both loaded. Murray’s is the weakest but he’s arguably the weakest of the Top 4 seeds on the clay surface. Djokovic with Ferrer looks like a pretty balanced section.
Right now I think Federer and Nadal will get through. It’s too bad that Soderling and Gulbis ended up in Federer section and Verdasco landed in Nadal’s.
Here’s the fourth round matches by seeding: 1 Federer v. 13 Monfils, 10 Cilic v. 5 Soderling, 4 Murray v. 15 Berdych, 11 Youhzny v. 8 Tsonga, 6 Roddick v. 9 Ferrer, 16 Ferrero v. 3 Djokovic, 7 Verdasco v. 12 Gonzalez, 14 Ljubicic v. 2 Nadal.
Quarterfinals by seed: Federer v. Soderling, Murray v. Tsonga, Roddick v. Djokovic, Verdasco v. Nadal.
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