Federer, Nadal in Rome; Loaded Stuttgart WTA Field; Previews
by Staff | April 25th, 2010, 1:52 pm

Italian Open
Rome, Italy
Surface: red clay

Top 8 Seeds: Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Robin Soderling, Fernando Verdasco, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Marin Cilic
Floaters: Julien Benneteau, Paul-Henri Mathieu, Nicolas Almagro, Igor Andreev, (Q) Marcel Granollers, Al Montanes, Lleyton Hewitt, Horacio Zeballos, Jeremy Chardy

Notes: Among the myriad of interesting first-round match-ups are Marcos Baghdatis vs. Ernests Gulbis, (15) Sam Querrey vs. Benneteau, (11) Ivan Ljubicic vs. Mathieu (winner to likely face Almagro), (16) Juan Monaco vs. Andreev, (10) Tomas Berdych vs. (Q) Granollers, (5) Soderling after a bye potentially vs. Montanes, (9) Mikhail Youzhny vs. Hewitt, (14) John Isner vs. Zeballos, and (2) Djokovic likely after a bye vs. Chardy; it is Federer’s first appearance on clay since winning Roland Garros last year; Nadal, sans injury, remains the favorite after his brutal display at Monte Carlo; Nadal beat the defending champ Djokovic in last year’s final; Murray has lost in the first round in his last two Masters Series appearances…but is back with his girlfriend!; if Nadal wins Rome he will tie Andre Agassi’s record of 17 Masters Series titles; Murray is 1-4 career in Rome, Soderling 3-5, Tsonga 0-2, Isner 0-0; Nadal has won Rome four of the last five years; Juan Martin del Potro and Nikolay Davydenko miss Rome with injury, and Andy Roddick because he looks for any excuse to skip the Euro clay season (no James Blake either).

Porsche Tennis Grand Prix
Stuttgart, Germany
Surface: clay

Seeds: Caroline Wozniacki, Dinara Safina, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Jelena Jankovic, Aggie Radwanska, Victoria Azarenka, Sam Stosur, Yanina Wickmayer

Floaters: Justine Henin, Ana Ivanovic, Lucie Safarova, Flavia Pennetta, Katarina Srebotnik, Marion Bartoli, Francesca Schiavone, Gisela Dulko, Shahar Peer, Agnes Szavay

Notes: Wow, two unseeded former No. 1s in Henin and Ivanovic; lots o’ first-round meetings of interest including (1) Wozniacki after a bye likely facing Safarova, (6) Azarenka vs. Pennetta, (3) Kuzy vs. Srebotnik, (7) Stosur vs. Bartoli, (8) Wickmayer vs. Schiavone (winner to likely face Henin), (4) Jankovic vs. Dulko, (5) Radwanska vs. Ivanovic (winner to likely meet Peer), and (2) Safina after a bye likely to face Szavay; watch for Safina and Kuznetsova fighting the Russian yips, returning from injury and facing tough players right off the bat; Kuzy is the defending champ, beating Safina is last year’s final.

Grand Prix De SAR La Princesse Lalla Meryem
Fes, Morocco
Surface: clay

Seeds: Carla Suarez Navarro, Patty Schnyder, Anabel Madina Garrigues, Melinda Czink, Angie Kerber, Petra Martic, Iveta Benesova, Lucie Hradecka

Floaters: Alize Cornet

Notes: Tough opener for (6) Martic against Cornet; in last year’s final Medina Garrigues defeated Ekaterina Makarova for the title.

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70 Comments for Federer, Nadal in Rome; Loaded Stuttgart WTA Field; Previews

Kimmi Says:

So, Safina is eventually back. Great to see her back, she must be fully recovered.

Good to see henin competing this week, read she broke a finger, luckly from the left hand.

GO HENIN all the way!

Von Says:

“…and Andy Roddick because he looks for any excuse to skip the Euro clay season (no James Blake either).”

NADA, because he’s entitled to one exemption as a tour veteran with over 600 matches played. Look up the Rules/Regs on the Masters Series before g such spurious claims. tsk, tsk.

Blake’s out for a month with a bad knee.

C’mon Staff, do a bit of research before making such inflammatory statements.

Von Says:

before g, s/b before making

Kimmi Says:

Kim Clijsters is an injury doubt for French Open


Seriously though, what is happening with this fed cup tie! henin broke a finger and now clijsters. Kim’s injury is even more serious. unbelivable!

Kimmi Says:

“Ha ha Kimmi. That’s why it is usually better to just pick the known name vs qualifier because there is no way to know who it will actually be before time expires on your ability make picks.”

Pick a known name vs qualifier..No way, I don’t like this blind guesing game at all. At least if I lose a pick, i know i did a little reasech but got things wrong.

I am now sure Chela will beat Garcia_Lopez!

contador Says:

Kimmi and NELTA-

I did such a load of “research” last night, hahaha…for nothing.

yep i picked GGL to win, thinking he would play someone besides chela.


I picked a few blind qualies as well CONTADOR. I was hoping Starace would get Chela or Granollers, but I think he got a lucky loser.

I was 3 for 3 today, but tomorrow is another day. I picked Andreev over Monaco and Zaballos over Isner.

Kimmi Says:

NELTA – 3 out of 3 today
Conty – 2 out of 3 today
Kimmi – 1 out of 3 today….yack!

Lets hope tomorrow I do better than you two..I deserve it.

Kimmi Says:

Conty, you still could be right about Garcia_Lopez. He beat Cilic in IW, didn’t he? I think it will be a close match with chela..

contador Says:

all i can say is: i didn’t know what i was doing when picking and add to that…picked berrer over hanescu for no good reason, just sloppy…i think i liked berrer’s picture better. LOL!

changed to chardy at the last minute and of course picked seppi.

so 2 of 3 for me.

picked z-ball over isner too, even as i’m thinking isner will win a caly court match

monaco over andreev

also winners:
GGL……not thinking he’s get chela

hajek over starace……thinking starace would get a tougher

got one qualie match right, i think: Llordra over beck

luczak over flippo ( who is flippo? )

contador Says:


right. GGL played cilic well on hc.

who knows.

Kimmi Says:

I pick andreev over monaco too..monaco is been losing a lot lately. He lost to Berrer in MC first round and then lost to a qualie in Barca..what do i know. His game could connect this week..he upset Murray last year on this stage..so!

Gulbis pick over baggy is a crazy one (especially baggy is 4-0 H2H)..but I did it too.

Zeballos pick is risky too but who knows..

contador Says:


“let’s hope i do better tomorrow than you two. i deserve it.” kimmi says.

so who are your picks….fess up, Kimmi. conty wants to know. i like a good game, even if i lose to NELTA, which is pretty certain.

contador Says:

okay kimmi-

you picked

andreev….i think it was a mistake to pick monaco. fell for the hair thing again.

Gulbis is always a crazy pick but how can i pick against him? it’s no secret – such an unreasonable crush i have on him……hahahahaaa

z-ball he got the award for most improved but…..improved enough handle isner’s serve? very risky

Kimmi Says:

conty..I did almost same as you

Gulbis (i should have picked baggy)
F-lopez (B.becker could win it..hard to say)
Cuevas (upseting Kohls..now this is risky)
melzer (wawrinka could have something to say here)
be bakker (yeah baby)

jane Says:

“fell for the hair thing again.” LOL – sorry I had to interject in the “bracket talk” to laugh at that one. I have the same weakness. :)

Kimmi Says:

I just posted a few of my picks there conty…we picked a lot the same except few. So lets see what we do tomorrow.

contador Says:

c’mon Jane-

you should have entered the draw challenge. i imagine you’d beat even NELTA.


you’d have more sense than to pick monaco and gulbis, even though their hair, in different ways, rocks. i saw the highlights of gulbis in barca….wow. those wild red curls. if i could only talk him into putting them into a retro ‘goran-do’ top-knot…..can’t imagine ernie wearing a hat or headband, can you?


i think we picked more different ones than the same : ) which makes this all the more interesting. i picked

gulbis- same, and nice to see you falling for his charm and not minding the inconsistency

debakko- same (yeah baby, go backko!)
wawa- not

you picked cuevas over PK? you must know something….

yep. F-lo over becker-same

i picked benny over querry…just cuz. just cuz in case federer could have a chance to set things right with the benny : ) very unsound pick, really considering querry’s run lately.

u picked leonardo mayer over belucci? almost fell for that one too

7 are the same 5 not. but have you looked at the order of play for tomorrow? i have to be up at 5 am. and to work by 9….probably will miss the ernie v baggy match.

go gulbis! you are top ten baby!

Kimmi Says:

Soderling twitter:

“Still looking for that nice feeling. Maybe I’ll find it in Rome. Early flight tomorrow.”

Kimmi Says:

“you picked cuevas over PK? you must know something….”

Cuavas is a clay courter but really why did i pick him..kohl was on fire in MC..don’t know, maybe H2H is in cuavas favour..i just have to remember H2H not always work.:)

“i picked benny over querry…just cuz. just cuz in case federer could have a chance to set things right with the benny : ) very unsound pick, really considering querry’s run lately.’

risky one conty. Benny not good recently but one can never know. Querrey was in the final of houston lost to chela..so I think querrey could do it. (please please let me win this one)

“u picked leonardo mayer over belucci? almost fell for that one too”

No no no, not that mayer..it is florian Mayer over Volandri…What has volandri done recently?

I picked belluci over whoever he is playind with. he plays some quallie, right? He is my guy after all and a good clay courter.

jane Says:

contador – maybe next time. Honestly I’ve never been interested because I suck at predictions, but you, Kimmi and NELTA are making it sound like a lot of fun.

“if i could only talk him into putting them into a retro ‘goran-do’ top-knot” HA HA – indeed. Ernests is handsome, great smile. Too bad he just can’t put it consistently together. It’d be great to see him realize his potential.

contador Says:

“…that nice feeling.” what? no, no soda. get cold, calculating; stay cool but don’t be nice.

must be something is lost in translation. he means he’s still not feeling comfortable outside and on clay. c’mon soda!

he should feel pretty good, i’d say…verdasco played out of his mind great and wasn’t going to let the swede win a spanish gem like barca. soda made the final. one could say his draw was easier than nando’s. but nando was not going to miss the opportunity to take barca, especially without the worry the repeat cursory beating by spain’s #1.

my risky pick bolelli ended up facing LL- greul….
bolelli should still win one for italy.

bolelli not on schedule for monday.

another pick i am regretting:

hewitt over youzhny

Kimmi Says:

jane: “maybe next time” Yes, play in madrid. It won’t take you long. I always thought its too hard but it is not…lots of fun too, the more the merrier..though i hate I am the last one here :)

contador Says:


that’s what i’m talking about. Erno getting a win over baggy then federer? a win like that could change the slacking 21 year old’s attitude toward tennis. maybe.

he talked about tennis in a recent 5 part interview and it was disappointing to hear how he hates practicing but knows it is necessary. but that isn’t enough: he admits he can’t understand how so many players spend hours and hours on the court. but he does admit to how great it is to win matches. and about coaching, sure he admits it’s nice to have a coach but one who doesn’t say much. also says he never watches tennis and has other things to do. oh brother.

ugh….not exactly a fire lit under him. way different words and thoughts than rafa or roger would use at 21.

maybe he was joking. he really does practice, want to develop all that natural tennis talent, is working on getting super fit and spends time preparing and taking advice form gumy.

if he did all that- top ten erno.

otherwise, just easy on the eyes as he wins some and loses more.

contador Says:

ah yes florian mayer, Kimmi. i picked him. but now he has disappeard from both atp rome site draw and the official site.

but he is still on the challenge draw. hm…

flippo volandri is playing lukzac and i would pick the australian but does the challenge draw update? refresh somehow? this is messed up.

Kimmi Says:

conty, i did not know that. thanks for letting me kno. i wonder what happens in this situation..

NELTA, have you come across a player that you picked on previous draws, withdrawals from the tournament..waht do they do to the draw challenge then?

contador Says:

i sent an email off to the “contact’ for challenger draw….they said i would have an email answer within 24 hrs….i would imagine sooner but i don’t know.

we should get another chance. ???

Kimmi Says:

Contador said “another pick i am regretting:
hewitt over youzhny”

Yap, that is a risky one…Hewitt is coming back from injury..did he just have a surgery? while youzhny has been playing not too bad on HC, clay so and so (lost a tight match to Nalby in MC- tiebreaker 3rd set I think).

where you thinking the same hewitt who took federer to USO final..can’t remember what year! hahahahah

seriously though, i will kick myself if youzhny lose to hewitt…that will be too funny. aaaarg I get a feeling he could do it!

Kimmi Says:

you email them..thats great conty. thanks.

contador Says:

i had no idea he (hewitt) had another hip surgery! makes the pick just downright stupid…..chuckles

i was thinking hewitt is just a proud champ who will fight, a tough customer and youzy is not known to be a clay courter is he?

yes, i must have been in a time warp on this one, Kimmi.

at a disadvantage here because i didn’t watch MC and well, did not do enough homework. sorta just rolled my eyes back and went to 2003, then clicked on hewitt…..hahahahaaa

i love youzhny’s hc game…his footwork and one hander backhand are perrrrrrfect. speaking of amazing movement, balance and footwork i sure miss davy.

will he be back soon? somewhere i read delPo was getting ready to return tour but have not heard about davy.

Kimmi Says:

Conty, you could still get it right..i mean hewitt over youzhny…(my reasoning has not been spot on so far..still kicking myself i should have picked chardyn *sigh*) I like the fighting spirit reasoning you had above. hewitt is a fighter, never die attitude..lets see what he can do. you never know!

davy, delpo please come back. i miss them greatly.

contador Says:


bad news: JCF is about to be served a bagel first set or if lucky get a breadstick…by somebody i do not know and did not pick.

hm, these things happen. for whatever reason, JCF having a bad day.

z-ball up a break on isner

yes, the draw is less interesting w/o delPo and davy

Kimmi Says:

OMG..just watching the beginning of FERRERO V GIRALDO

Giraldo is hitting winners left right and center..haha winners from ferrero serve like 10 times unbelivable. can ferrero weather the storm!

oh no..ferrero cannot win a game so far

6-0 2-0 giraldo…can he keep it up

contador Says:

have to get my arse to work.

will miss the baggy v gulbis match : (

go gulbis!

Kimmi Says:

ok, he is human afterall…made few errors for the first time to give the break back..big sigh for ferrero

contador Says:

oh hi=

really? santiago outplayong JCF?

course i have not stream on…..was just checking livescore before getting outa bed. i though JCF must be injured…..

Kimmi Says:

yes, conty. have to go to work too..but santiago is on fire..hope he keeps this up though..he is starting to get nervous

contador Says:

maybe i get 1 right.

montanes giving the italian a beating.

contador Says:


cheering against your pick for the underdog. hahaha

why i love you, Kimmi!

Kimmi Says:

I know conty but the underdog can’t keep it up..he is staring to break down..ferrero the man with experience…

contador Says:

ah and horacio zeballos serving for first set.

contador Says:

if i could only stay home and watch tennis all week!

now i have to get outa bed!

have a great day kimmi. good luck for your picks!

Kimmi Says:

me too, i have to go. thanks conty. we will see when the day is over if we got anything right.

Go horacio zeballos!


KImmi says
NELTA, have you come across a player that you picked on previous draws, withdrawals from the tournament..waht do they do to the draw challenge then?
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I don’t recall that happening, but if it does then you hope you didn’t pick that player to go deep in the tournament.


Ouch! Ferrero is out and I had him winning 3 rounds

Ben Pronin Says:

Kimmi and NELTA, that happened to me before in the bracket challenge. That’s the one thing I hate, when players pull out and whatnot, you have almost no chance to revise your picks. Last year, I had Del Potro winning a few rounds in Cincy but then he pulled out and Benneteau took his place. I got incredibly lucky because Benneteau went just as deep as I thought Delpo would. But it usually doesn’t work out that well.

I can’t believe Ferrero lost. 99.4% picked him to win.

contador Says:

from work slacking here but had to peek at the results so far.

sheesh….ferrero lost, monatnes, zeballos….all lost

at least gulbis on!! woooot! kimmi

and PK made it. so far 2 right on the day.

NELTA- i ask the question Kimmi did above, sent an email off to the draw “contact” but no reply. lol…

just live with it, i guess.

jane Says:

Holy wow conty – just checked the scores. Did Ernests ever dispose of Baggy! 2 and 2? I’d’ve thunk it would be closer. And now he gets the pleasure of playing Fed!

contador Says:


basically i make house calls but have to manage a client caseload so…i can sneak a peek at livescore…..from the office.

ERNO!!! I don’t think federer will allow EG to beat him but… one never knows. i won’t get to see it so please….i hope some blogs their match!

and yes you can, Jane. you’d be better at the draw challenge game than i am.

so far only 2 of my picks have won. but that’s why i love the early rounds….underdogs chance to howl!

go giraldo! go pablo! and paolo ( all players i do not know and likely would if i watched more clay court and doubles? )


I didn’t realize Fed is playing doubles. He is taking the court now with Allegro. Good idea to get some live match play before his 1st singles match. Nadal did the same thing at IW after taking time off.

margot Says:

Polo: we just didn’t bail out our little row boat fast enough and there goes Baggy over the side! Oh dear, who’ll be next?
Didn’t think Gulbis had a snowball in hell’s chance of beating Fed., but now I’m not so sure, he seems to be in a groove. He’s all yours though conty, he just looks petulant all the time to me.

jane Says:

margot, check out the ATP site; there’s a pic of Andy M with a lot of young fans, and he looks very relaxed and happy. Hope that translates to the court.

contador, no I can’t see EG beating Fed, especially with Fed all warmed up with playing doubles. Maybe he’ll keep it close for one set, but I think Fed will win in 2.

margot Says:

jane: cheers, will do. OMG have just watched Monaco trying to close out the match against Andreev, y’know it’s not just Andy who gives his fans much grief!

margot Says:

Gosh jane, is that Andy smiling?????…..!!!

madmax Says:

Federer is playing Gulbis tomorrow on centre court at lunchtime. Glad I saw that as I thought he was playing Wednesday.

Djokovic is also playing tomorrow :sar, ollyk and Duro – good luck to him.

Andy is also playing – crossed fingers for you Margot and Jane.

Am trying to get to see the doubles match which fed is playing right now, but cannot get a link. Drives me crazy sometimes!

jane Says:

margot – I know, it’s true! : )

madmax – thanks for the updates; hope to catch both Djoko and Murray tomorrow, and I am hoping they both play well again. Fingers (and toes) crossed. Will also try to watch Fed and Ernie.

Fot Says:

Well I’m happy that Roger got some time on the court today in his double’s match. At least he won’t be coming in ‘cold’ in the match tomorrow. Gulbis looked pretty good today in beating Bathdatis but I hope Roger will come to play tomorrow in their match.

Go Roger!

I didn’t get to see JCF’s match. What the heck happened? Think JCF has been playing too much tennis lately?

OllyK Says:

Go, Nole! I’m so nervous… Thanks, maxi, and good luck to your guy, too!

madmax Says:

Yes, i heard about ferrero, can only be that he is tired. surely? He has been having such a hot streak on clay lately. An off day. Needs to rest now.

Ollyk, Novak is playing after roger, murray is playing after novak.

the heat is on!


posting the marmite off to you tomorrow ma man!

Kimmi Says:

Aaaargh very annoyed! Seriously, this draw challenge game I can’t win. Most of my picks today lost.

Querrey..very MAD with you . he was serving for the match at 5-4 third set then blew it..blew it..blew it! Benneteau went on to win in the tie breaker..yeah conty, good for you here.

Andreev lost it too. Monaco the steady one today! yeah again Contador

Look at me thinking Cuaves will cause an upset…kohls all the way today…yeah again Conty!

But I am happy Garcia_ Lopez beat chela, very easy too. And Gulbis..yeah baby! When will baghdatis win a clay match..a series of first round loses continues for him.

I watched ferrero match this morning..ferrero was trying everything but this guy Santiago was playing like somebody possessed. He had like 32 winners and 10 errors only..he had like 15 return winner from ferrero serve..I though, OK he can’t keep it up…HE DID! unbelivable. Ferrero only allowed 9 winner..oh boy!

Thanks for the reply NELTA and Ben..does not matter now anyway..Luckaz already lost to Volandri and my bracket continues to get messed up.


Tough day for me in the bracket challenge too. After the draw came out I said there were a lot of tough early matches to call. Then you have Ferrero and Montanes going down in the 1st round.

I guess there is more of an advantage to playing at home than I thought. All 3 Italian wild cards won today.

Not knowing where the quallies are being placed when you make your picks really sucks. I definitely would have picked Llodra over Beck.

Kimmi Says:

NELTA, I think contador did well today.

She got monaco, kohl and benneteau which i got wrong. Thanks god I had Llodra winning over Beck..Garcia-Lopez over chela gave me another point. I agree with you about not knowing where quallies are places SUCKS big time.

Ferrero definetly messed it up. I had him all the way to the semi *gulp*

I am 14660th out of 15029. I am sure you guys are waaaaay above me :)

Ben Pronin Says:

Kimmi, NELTA, the challenge bracket is bs. I can’t believe Ferrero lost. Querrey was supposed to win. And freaking Volandri hasn’t played a main tour match in forever. This freaking sport.

Polo Says:

Margot, missed your earlier post and I failed to watch Baghdatis against Gulbis because I had a heart attack after watching Ferrero lose. The good thing is, had I seen Gulbis vs Baghy, I would have suffered a stroke, too.

contador Says:

Kimmi, NELTA-

i left this morning thinking i was toast, had a nightmare day at work and just got home to find out….

I ROCK BABY! woohoo and wooot! 8 picks today a 2 yesteraday puts me 6428 outta 15,029. really thought i would get 2 or 3 right.

but i’m going down tomorrow kimmi…i think you’ll have a better day because uh…

looking at the order of play for tomorrow:

i picked hewitt…what was i drinking, i mean thinking….lol

we both picked bollleli ( if i recall, i talked you into it right?)
you picked melzer, me wawa
i think we both picked feLO
and we both picked nole and almagro, right?

i picked monaco to go another round….oh you piced andreev. tsk,tsk, if it’s a tough choice go with the best hair….lol…

we both picked debakko and federer, i would imagine; also ferrer, belucci and the muzza probably

the ones i now regret picking: hewitt, for sure. not sure about feli, and the wawa (but i usually pick swiss). monaco might not survive another round.

of course the match i dearly wish i could see: federer and gulbis but as i figured, it’s on right at my busiest time of day.

i can catch the first matches but tha 1 pm in rome start ruins watching the later matches.

Margot and Madmax-
EG hasn’t grown on you, just a little? okay. he’s a bad boy but his talent is incredible. now if he only had a work ethic.

federer will take him to school….they just played in Doha a few months ago and ernie likes to kick a tennis ball after he wins….federer did it too after beating ernie… it was in good humor, i think.. fed kicking the tennis ball is on youtube.

i hope EG can make it competitive.

ajde nole and c’mon muzza! we need them winning again.


contador Says:

LOL, Ben Pronin

JCF screwed up my draw bad…had JCF going deep. i doubt anyone in their right mind picked santiago giraldo. who is he?

contador Says:


Polo- have an ambulance on stand-by, just in case. if federer loses tomorrow, even though i want EG to score a win against a top ten, i will pass-out cold if it’s federer.

kimmi- we lucked out on GGL i think. i picked “qualifier” to win where i guessed chela would be placed. wrong

it’s random, the qualie placing. NELTA called it.

Kimmi Says:

I knew it, I knew you would be happy. Good for you contador. When I was watching the live score during Querrey v benny I was really cheering for querrey, he pissed me off..then I thought about you.

Kohl Vs Cuevas was another close one…so my choice was not too off.. hahaa (need to pat myself on the back)

Monaco vs Andreev..at last monaco wins a match. These two are both in some kind of a slump. Andreev slump is worse I am afraid..monaco did better this year in south america.

Now tomorrow needs to be my day…I need to catch up with you and NELTA..I am almost the last people in the list. hahahah!

Youzhny better win, no choice here..
And melzer has to win too. Feel sorry for wawa, I like him a lot but I am afraid tomorrow is melzer time.:)

I think we picked all others the same…Good luck to you too.


contador Says:


i am smiling. couldn’t believe my eyes when i looked at results tonight.

here’s why i thought benny would win: he’s motivated. wants another piece of federer…wily frenchy : )

yeah kimmi, we picked very much the same

go bolleli! still laughing at myself for mindlessly clicking on hewitts name…

the only qualie match-up i guessed right was llordra v beck.

Greul could beat Bolleli, however.

must be late- your time. i’m going to bed soon, so i’ll catch the first matches

Kimmi Says:

yap! good night!

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