Led by Roger Federer, the top names in tennis take to the courts Wednesday in Paris. The top-seeded Federer is joined by Andy Murray, Andy Roddick and Robin Soderling who are all featured in second round play.
Federer, the recent Basel winner, matches up with “Baby Fed” Richard Gasquet. A year ago it was Frenchman Julien Benneteau stunning the Swiss, will Gasquet do the same on the slick Paris indoor courts?
“I believe he has the potential to become Top 10, there’s no question about that,” said Federer of Gasquet. “But tennis has become more mental and physical than before. Maybe that’s the reason why it’s so difficult to become Top 10 overnight.”
Federer has never won the Paris indoor title.
Basel semifinalist Roddick opens play against Finn Jarkko Nieminen. The other Andy, Andy Murray, is on in the match of the day against the mercurial David Nalbandian.
The Argentine has won two of three meetings with Murray, but Murray won most recently in Canada this summer 6-2, 6-2.
Another Frenchman, Gilles Simon, will be tested by Soderling in the last match of the day.
Winners on Tuesday included Fernando Verdasco who kept his slim London hopes alive turning away Arnuad Clement. Also, Gael Monfils, Tomas Berdych, Radek Stepanek and Ernests Gulbis, a recipient of a Mikhail Youhzny retirement, also notched victories.
The BNP Parisbas Tennis Masters if the final regular season ATP event of the year.
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