Murray’s Misery Mounts; Raonic Blasts Blake, Berankis Next at San Jose
by Sean Randall | February 10th, 2011, 8:06 am

I spoke briefly yesterday of Sam Querrey’s sorry state. After his first round performance in Rotterdam you can add Andy Murray to that club. In his opener on Wednesday Murray was manhandled by Marcos Baghdatis 6-4, 6-1.

Murray actually led 3-0 until the bottom fell out. The Scot ended losing 12 of the next 14 games in suffering his earliest exit from a tournament in almost a year.

“I started the match really well, but then started missing quite a lot; I made quite a lot of mistakes,” said Murray after losing his 5th straight set without seeing even a set point. “You need to be very sharp with your movement on a surface like that and maybe I wasn’t. Marcos played very well.”

By that scoreline, Andy, no, you weren’t very sharp.

As I said before the match this was going to be a test of where Murray was mentally. Baghdatis is a very good player but that lopsided score tells me he’s no where close to being right between the ears.

Murray is next scheduled to play Dubai before coming to the U.S. for Indian Wells and Miami. Those are three events he should do well at but clearly his mind will dictate. And for Murray it is a tough spot, do you play through it our take time off? Unfortunately, there’s no right answer.

Staying in Rotterdam, JW Tsonga and Tomas Berdych were winners Wednesday. On tap today Berdych plays Dmitry Tursunov (remember him?), Robin Soderling gets Kohlscreiber and Bagdatis meets Feliciano Lopez.

Here on the West Coast, promising Canadian Milos Raonic continues to make a name for himself. The 20-year-old took out James Blake 6-2, 7-6(4) to advance to the San Jose quarterfinals. The 6-foot-5 Raonic hit 13 aces in beating Blake, who is a guy going in the exact opposite direction than Milos.

“I’m playing well, I’m playing confident and doing the things I need to do – serving well, taking care of my serve and putting pressure on return games,” said Raonic. “Everything’s coming together. I’m utilizing opportunities, but this wasn’t just a thing that clicked. It was a lot of hard work and a very good off-season.”

Roanic now meets another 20-year-old, Richard Berankis, on Friday.

“We’re the exact same age, we grew up together,” said Raonic. “He’s seen a lot of me and I’ve seen a lot of him. We get along. We’ve hit a few times over the last few weeks, in Australia and here, so I look forward to that match.”

Today, Wednesday winners Fernando Verdasco and Gael Monfils return along wth Lleyton Hewitt and Juan Martin Del Potro.

And at the Paris WTA stop, Kim Clijsters turned away Kristina Barrois in three sets. The victory puts the Belgium just one win from reclaiming the No. 1 ranking. In the Friday quarterfinals she’ll play the winner of the Jelena Dokic-Nadia Petrova match.


CENTRE COURT start 11:00 am
[Q] D Tursunov (RUS) vs [4] T Berdych (CZE)
[7] I Ljubicic (CRO) vs [Q] B Paire (FRA)
F Lopez (ESP) vs M Baghdatis (CYP)
J Benneteau (FRA) / J Tsonga (FRA) vs A Murray (GBR) / J Murray (GBR)

Not Before 7:30 PM
T de Bakker (NED) vs [6] M Youzhny (RUS)
[1] R Soderling (SWE) vs P Kohlschreiber (GER)


CENTER COURT start 9:45 am
M Russell (USA) vs [5] D Istomin (UZB)
Not Before 11:15 AM
[8] K Nishikori (JPN) vs [WC] T Smyczek (USA)
B Dabul (ARG) vs [7] L Hewitt (AUS)
[WC] B Klahn (USA) / R Thacher (USA) vs A Falla (COL) / X Malisse (BEL)
L Lacko (SVK) vs J Del Potro (ARG)
Not Before 7:00 PM
[1] F Verdasco (ESP) vs I Karlovic (CRO)
R Kendrick (USA) vs [2] G Monfils (FRA)

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67 Comments for Murray’s Misery Mounts; Raonic Blasts Blake, Berankis Next at San Jose

jane Says:

Raonic & Dolgopolov – both guys who went deep at the AO – are now in the QFs of their respective events this week. I am thrilled for Milos in particular, as other than Nestor we just haven’t had a tennis player with that much talent in Canada (but yes, Duro, he has that Serbian connection, like Nestor too :)). I hope Raonic continues to improve and rise. Blake really did begin that match poorly though. Raonic’s next match against another young gun might be more difficult.

As for Murray’s loss, I did not see the match so all I can say is that it is too bad, and I hope he bounces back for the hard court Masters events coming up.

jane Says:

The Murray bros are playing doubles a.t.m. And winning against Tsonga & Llodra.

Duro Says:

jane, didn’t they say Murray bros were not given the wild card due to some kind of negligence from tournament organizers? I’m glad they are playing because of Andy. Very bad decision he made playing there… It tells a lot. No coach, no clear plans, wrong decisions, lack of guidance… He’ll be all right by the time IW and Miami come.

Sorry, Jane, but Raonic has Montenegrin “connection”. Nestor(ovic) has Serbian one. Similar, but not completely the same thing :-). Cheers.

mat4 Says:

About half of the slavic inhabitants of Montenegro are Serbs. Who knows about Raonic? Except that he is Canadian… Heard also that Montenegrins are majority in Belgrade… Duro, you can’t be serious. :-)

dari Says:

wanted to get a glimpse of dolgo on clay- he’s playing storace. a great game when dolgo was down 0-40 and fought off bp’s with great net play and an ace to boot! good stuff from him to hold.

Sandy Says:

Duro, Please explain to me why Andy will be all right for IW and Miami? Will he have a Coach? Have clear plans? Start making right decisions? Or have guidance? Where is all this to come from and how quickly will it come?

Duro Says:

mat4, I actually am :-)! I know about Raonic. Every Raonic family on earth originates from Montenegro. But you should know about it…
As for Montenegrins in Belgrade, lots of them all right, about 200 000, but Belgrade has about 2 million, so… It’s more of a joke actually. Cheers, mat.

Sandy, no reliable info I posses, nothing like that. I just think it’s enough time to get it together for him. Those courts suit him, he has plenty of time to recuperate, and considering how good he is, it just has to happen. His current situation will only motivate him to do better.

No coach in sight, but he might find one till IW. Now’s the time. The bell rings dangerously…

contador Says:

dari – followed the livescore. sort of a typical dolgo match. been watching them since fall 09 as much as possible. the difference is he’s winning more. but following his matches on livescore is even fun. he can lose a set, be down a break in the second and comeback to win the second, then win or lose the decider, ect…

it’s erratic on livescore but seeing his matches explains it. he goes for broke when he needs to and is more solid on the important points is the difference from a year ago…in my non professional opinion. he has so many shots…and appears getting stronger mentally and physically.

hello Duro….interesting information about belgrade, montenegro, raonic. all i know is when watching live chat…there are differences in vocabulary like “ajmo” “ajde” ….croatians seem to claim raonic. what would i know. i was guessing they were from croatia but maybe from montenegro? love to go for a visit and see and hear for myself : )

guessing raonic over berankis, jane. i like berankis overall game better but that bomb of a serve and the power raonic has could be too much for berankis. but both are mentally solid…at least what i’ve seen of both.

think i can watch tennis tomorrow and hoping to watch delpo later.

rotterdam quarter-finals look great.

TC Says:

What’s with Ricardo ‘yellow’ Mello at the Brazilian tourney?

The guy is on fire.

Kimmi Says:

at the bottom of the ATP website, they show H2H soderling vs kohls. Kolhs had 3-0 advantage. now, that is surprising, at least to me.

Soderling was all over kohls in the first set and till half of the second. how did kohls turn that match i just dont know..kohls took the second set and all the way to the third set tie break.

Good to see soda fighting through. if he had lost that match then his confidence against this player (kohls) would have suffered.

Great win for Milos. agreed with contador, i think milos has more fire power than berankis.

Go milos.

TC – seen the results for this mello guy. seem to beat his opponents a little easy. lets see what he does against his next opponent. Dolgo is next.

ah, robredo lost a match…wish i could have seen that..

Kimmi Says:

delpo is hitting the ball well. he is also aggressive. he is going to move up the ranking very quickly.

dari Says:

just turned on the delpo match.
commentator says “there’s just an air about delpo at this tournament, he looks like a champion”
just what i want to hear as soon as i start the match! 3-0 delpo

Kimberly Says:

looks like delpo is finding his form. Will be interesting to see him play the bigger guys.

dari Says:

what a forehand. yes, smaller fish at the moment kimberly, but it takes a start there!

Kimmi Says:

hold! c’mon

dari Says:

i don’t remember delpo’s backhand before. im sure its nothing new, but i am noticing it a lot the last two matches.

Kimmi Says:

what is happening with the net? tough game for delpo this one..better hold.

dari Says:

geeze, players to the locker room? how long is this supposed to take?

dari Says:

go delpo.

jane Says:

Delpo looks good, but I really don’t think this Lacko dude has much, esp. in terms of return games, he’s lacking. I think that bagel set versus Rafa was a bit of a fluke. I may eat my words but he’s 23, same age as Djoko and Murray.

Kimmi Says:

this is exactly the right tourny for delpo to get some of his confidence back. i can see him using his big FH..BH down the line is good too..

it will take time for him to challenge the big guys but he is definetly improving big time.

Kimmi Says:

“bagel set versus Rafa was a bit of a fluke”

ah, c’mon jane. lacko is very proud of that bagel, if given a chance he would like to do it again :)

dari Says:

this is pretty off-topic, but does anybody remember what injury bhagdatis retired with at the AO against melzer?

Kimmi Says:

delpo serve is not up there yet..

jane Says:

Lacko’s first serve percentage is under 50%. Not only that but he has only returned 6% of Delpo’s first serves (1 out of 18) and 36% of his second serves. He is a walk in the park for Delpo.

But I agree Kimmi – Delpo is in the right tourney to ease himself back and gain some confidence win after win. I just don’t see that he’s having to work very hard to win this match, which is kind of boring.

Who will Delpo face next round?

dari Says:

i feel like rafa doesn’t get bageled on one leg almost, ya know? i mean if you count AO, that was kinda one leg, and no bagel. there had to be a little tiny something in lacko there, at least that day!
whoops, break point against delpo.

dari Says:

hold on delpo

jane Says:

Kimmi – no doubt he’s proud of that bagel, ha ha. But I doubt he could do it again. I just don’t see that he has the game, or maybe tonight is a really off night.

jane Says:

Maybe he was “in the zone” versus Rafa that night dari; also Rafa did have a fever :).

jane Says:

Oops – do you think Delpo broke himself there or what ladies? Seems like his serve has dropped off a little, but he should still get this done in straight – I hope!

dari Says:

haha- two bad tosses then an ace!

Kimmi Says:

delpo had the mid match lapse like other top players..federer comes to mind.

dari Says:

jane- yes, he had a fever, that was the first appearances of the soaked shirt. im just used to rafa overcoming everything. what’s worse, one leg? or a fever? ;)
lacko had his own winners in that game, but yes, i delp definitely held up. no third set, please.

dari Says:

im sorry LET up

dari Says:

“they just like to bang”
im so immature

Kimmi Says:

danger game this is

dari Says:

wow, and he manages to hold. kimmi- there were glimpses of great serve in that game.

jane Says:

Agree: mid-match lapse by Delpo and also Lacko playing a little bit better. His serve percentage is up over 50% now, and he’s reading Delpo’s serve a little better. He’s up to 52% on second serve returns.

At least Delpo held.

Sometimes Delpo looks a little lackadaisical; sometimes he looks like a champ. I guess that sort of inconsistency we can expect from him now, while he shakes out the rust, gets some wins, and gets that fire power firing all the time.

He’s got 15-30 – come on Delpo! Go for the break.

jane Says:

That was a nice forehand there from JMDP! But I still like Soda’s wind up before he hits his forehand as one of the best – it looks like slow-mo every time – he opens up so wide.

Delpo got lucky on that netcord. But nice serve to follow up.


jane Says:

3 errors off the ground from Lacko, all long – and a Delpo winner = 5-1 Delpo. So does he play Hewitt next? That one could be awesome!

dari Says:

way to go, JMdP!
yes jane, Hewitt next. that’s good stuff.

Kimmi Says:

yeah, congrats delpo. hmmm, apparently he meets his nemesis hewitt in the qtrs …go delpo

time to sleep. Good luck to la monf and hot sauce

Kimmi Says:

delpo: “i am improving slowly but still improving, that is important”

Yes, go get them juan martin!

steve-o Says:

Good win for Del Potro. One step at a time.

jane Says:

I really don’t want to miss Delpo vs. Hewitt; those two could be a great match up. Delpo is improving, good for him.

M Says:

delpo: “i am improving slowly but still improving, that is important”

Yes! Yes, it is!

Dale Delpo! :-)

M Says:

“Sometimes Delpo looks a little lackadaisical; sometimes he looks like a champ. I guess that sort of inconsistency we can expect from him now, while he shakes out the rust, gets some wins, and gets that fire power firing all the time.”

jane – part of it’s the rust, yes; but part of it’s the pain still, too, I think.

(And stamina.)

Remember after 1R, he said the wrist still hurt a little? Given the way he’s started most recent matches coming out just serving bombs, and with the stunning forehands, and then finds it harder to close out the second or third? I’m thinking it’s more pain than rust.

(Even though I hope not.)

M Says:

jane, TC & Kimmi –

Mello beat both Giraldo, who was the Santiago clay finalist last week, and Montañes, who was the #2 seed, to get that spot in the semis. And he has home court advantage.

Davai, Sasha!

Duro Says:

Countess, sorry for the late answer. Time difference, you know…

“ajmo” and “ajde” is the same word, only “ajmo” is plural and “ajde” is singular, not a different language as it seems. In English it’s “C’mon” or “Lets go”, Spanish “Vamos”, French “allez” etc. Nole actually never uses it. Ana Ivanović does. Nole says “Dobar!” when he hits a great shot. “Dobar” means something like “Good one!” etc…

Countess, Croats can claim Raonic as much as they like, but simply that’s not the truth. He is born in Podgorica, Capital of Montenegro, about 50 km from my hometown. His brother and sister still live there. His uncle was the deputy prime minister of Montenegro until couple of days ago… I personally know lots of Raonic family members (typical, common family name in Montenegro) and, as I previously said, absolutely and with no exception authentic Montenegrin last name. There is no Raonić Family in the world which doesn’t originate from Montenegro.

Come, be my guest, meet our beautiful small country and get to know it yourself. You’re most welcome.

jane Says:

M “I’m thinking it’s more pain than rust. (Even though I hope not.)”

I hope not too :( but that’s a good point M; I hadn’t thought of that. I wonder about players coming back from injury and their fear of re-injury. It must haunt them at least a little.

But each win is a positive for JMDP.

Can’t wait to see him and Hewitt. Even if he doesn’t win, it will be a good test/gage for him – and us.

Tennis Vagabond Says:

With just his two match wins, Del Po will move almost 100 spots! I he beats Hewitt, he’ll be up 180 spots to around 305.

Raonic meanwhile is moving just under 10 spots per win, so he’ll be in the 70’s or better next week.

The Dog now is so much farther ahead that he NEEDS these wins- you can’t stay top 30s and top 20s getting knocked out earlier than semis at 250s (I don’t mean that mathematically, since a good Masters or GS performance relegates these 250s as meaningless, but as a point of where one must be relative to one’s competition)

stu Says:

Too bad for TBird.. Tsonga to win Rotterdam? Been way too long since he won a title…

Hewitt is a good test for Delpo, not playing at his best level but always a fighter. I can’t wait for Delpo to beat him and regain some confidence…

BTW, How happy is Novak going to be with Pete’s interview?!

Kimberly Says:

stu–i think it this point rotterdam is soderlings to win or lose.

Will def be interesting to see the Delpo/Hewitt match.

jane Says:

Murray bros are serving for the match!

That’s sweet stu: no doubt Nole is thrilled. He loves Pete.

margot Says:

Hooray for Team Murray, or shall I call them “The Jam”? Something to celebrate at last. And Jamie back in top 50. Suspect this is real, reason for trip to Rotterdam :)

contador Says:

yes “M” Davai Sascha!!

Duro..thanks for clearing that up. and here i thought i had figured out little ways to distinguish the Serbians from the Croatians, other than who they are obviously supporting. is it all one language spoken throughout the balkans? then they pull out some cyrillic and i’m lost. i find i actually do the best with dutch …they throw in so many english expressions and german words.

i’ve been to europe once….too young to remember much and once to greece in 2004. i’ll get back to europe sometime. : )

jane Says:

I like “The JAM” margot! Especially because I loved that band. ;)

contador Says:

ah, Duro….i am distracted streaming soda match….missed the part about your home being 50 km from Podgorica! isn’t that on the adriatic?
when i was in greece, we sailed east through the islands from the port of pireaus. i want to sail from a different port up the adriatic and see what’s there….live the dream, right? spend a month…at least.

leo vixen Says:

@dari, Marcos Baghdatis retired from AO vs Melzer because he had pain in his pinky finger that apparently was causing “shooting electrical pain all the way to the elbow”. That’s all I read or know.

margot Says:

jane, me too re band :)
Will watch semis in Rotterdam b4 final verdict, but do fancy Tsonga, especially now with a day’s rest. He’s playing better than I’ve seen for ages.
Dolly-Mix’s match totally wrong time unfortunately.
Nowhere to talk WTA but I really like Kvitova, I think she could be a future number 1. Cannot believe the multi- talented Petkovic lost to Mettek-Sands, she is such a one dimentional player, but determined, I’ll give her that!

contador Says:

thark! go soda!

that was a great match between youzhny and soda. youzhny has all the shots in the world but soda pop was da boss XD

dari Says:

thx leo, at first i thought you were being sarcastic, but i guess not!

Duro Says:

Countess, yes, It’s on the Adriatic. I have already invited you. It stays.

Kimberly Says:

my husbands mom is croatian but she actually roots for the serbs, as does my husband. Unless of course they are playing the croats but marin cilic hasn’t given anyone much to get excited about lately.

contador Says:

very generous, Duro. would very much love to see your country. thank-you. now, to get there ; )

Indian Wells, California, this year. Europe next year? it’s possible.

jane Says:

Kimberly, Marin is about to go into a first set tiebreak vs. Troicki.

thark Says:

ha – thanks for the good soda vibes conty!

i don’t know how you guys do it – holding down the fort day in and day out here at the X. i have to restrict my tennis watching and commentary just to remain (somewhat) gainfully employed.

anyway i hate to think i’ll become one of those “slam only” people (not mentioning any names, lol), but a little moderation won’t kill me i suppose… ;)

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