A quick update. The big men’s names all had an easy day in their opening round matches at Beijing and Tokyo on Tuesday. Top seeds Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray won comfortably in China along with Robin Soderling and Nikolay Davydenko.
The ageless Ivan Ljubicic pulled the lone upset knocking out Mikhail Youzhny in straight sets.
Today’s schedule is highlighted by Djokovic v. Mardy Fish and Davydenko v. Marin Cilic. Remember Djokovic owns Fish having just beaten him last month at the US Open. John Isner is also on in a good one against Phil Kohlschreiber.
For the women, Maria Sharapova was bounced out of Beijing yesterday by countrywoman Elena Vesnina 7-6, 6-2 in the second round. The 23-year-old former No. 1 has now lost three of her last four matches.
“I’m definitely not as good as I wanted to be,” Sharapova said. “After the US Open I wasn’t able to train as much as I would’ve wanted to, and I feel like the last couple of weeks I’ve just been trying to play catch-up. My rhythm hasn’t been where it should be. Obviously it’s disappointing, but I’ve lost and won many matches in my career. I’ll just have to regroup and move forward.”
Tonight, top seed Caroline Wozniacki begins her quest for the No. 1 ranking – she’s just four sets away – against Sara Errani.
In Tokyo, Rafael Nadal and Andy Roddick were easy straight set winners. But defending champion JW Tsonga was upset in his return by Jarkko Nieminen in three sets.
“I did all I could but it was not enough today,” said Tsonga who was sidelined because of a bad knee since Wimbledon. “It was tough, my first match in three months, and Jarkko played well. But I have no pain in my knee, so that is positive.”
Wednesday’s highlight is a clash between Richard Gasquet and Dmitry Tursunov. Andy Roddick is also in doubles with Thiemo De Bakker.
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