American Men Fail in Rome; Venus v Serena 2nd Round?
by Staff | May 12th, 2013, 9:46 pm

American men made a statement on Sunday at the Italian Open — a bad one — when both exited in first round play.
Sadder news for U.S. men’s tennis? They were the Top 2 ranked players for the U.S. Sadder still? Both were unseeded in the 16-seeded field. Sadder still? Never mind, this can go on and on.

On the slow red dirt in Rome on Sunday Sam Querrey exited 6-2, 7-6(8) against No. 9 seed Richard Gasquet, and John Isner was bumped from the draw 5-7, 7-6(5), 6-3 at the hands of Denis Istomin.

Other winners Sunday were Alexandr Dolgopolov, Kevin Anderson, Marcel Granollers defeating clay veteran Nikolay Davydenko, and Grigor “Mr. Sharapova” Dimitrov defeating former Top 10er Marcos Baghdatis.

In the final round of women’s singles qualifying on Sunday, players into the main draw were Czech Andrea Hlavackova, the Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko, Romanian Simona Halep, Spaniards Garbine Muguruza and Anabel Medina Garrigues, Americans Mallory Burdette and Melanie Oudin, and France’s Mathilde Johansson.

Women’s main draw play starts Monday in Rome.

Matches to look for on Monday include Venus Williams vs. Laura Robson, Jarkko Nieminen vs. Ernests Gulbis, (11) Marin Cilic vs. qualifier Andrey Golubev, and former French winner Svetlana Kuznetsova vs. former gazonga-lugger Simona Halep.

Venus, who has withdrawn from her most recent tournament entries citing a back injury, would meet sister Serena in the second round if she can get by the talented Brit comer Robson in her opener.

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16 Comments for American Men Fail in Rome; Venus v Serena 2nd Round?

Humble Rafa Says:

My “rivalry” with a certain Swiss player is coming at round 2 in a tournament near you..soon!

Kimmi Says:

Who care about venus vs serena. Their last encounter was no contest, nothing to get excited about. I don’t think Robson will allow it to happen anyways, she will be too good for venus me thinks..

RZ Says:

That was a tough draw for Querrey. Gasquet is playing well and rather consistently getting through to the later rounds these days. Isner however…

RZ Says:

Kimberly, I hope so! Robson won’t be seeded for the French (unless she goes on a tear in Rome) but if she wins a few rounds here and at the French, she could be seeded at Wimbledon, which would be awesome!

RZ Says:

^ Sorry, I mean Kimmi (had just read another thread where Kimberly had commented)

Rumble Says:

From Sampras-Agassi, it went down to Roddick, and now down to nothing.

There ARE no American men left in tennis worth talking about any more. Its sad.

Colin Davis Says:

Apart from the fact Venus is a shadow of her former self, Laura may well win this match, because she seems to do her best against big names.
By the way, did anyone notice this – I forget which match it was, but in Madrid the usually ladylike Robson used the F-word at one point when she missed a shot!

Margot Says:

Would agree with your comments on one handed backhands, does seem a liability and more likely to break down than a two hander but, regarding Dimitrov, I’ve read because he’s taller than Fed and Beefy Boy, his backhand is not as vulnerable say against Rafa, as Fed’s is. Can take a mite higher I suppose.
Andy has a nice draw, hope he gets as far as Fed at least….even beyond…;)

tenisListo Says:

U.S. men’s tennis has been a sad situtation for a very long time. There is no burning desire or hunger to win among the U.S. men’s tennis players. Isner is BORING and can only win a match with aces which means he has no game plan and Querrey is so unfocused and inconsistant with his play. I see no hope in Harrison and any of the other young pro players. What U.S. tennis is lacking is humility. Very, very sad.

Wog boy Says:


Thanks for the hug from the other thread, I think I know why.

About Andy and Nole, you are right but I think that Andy has very fragile soul and he tries to protect himself by the way you explained, just my opinion. The person that is so loyal to his friends and family the way Andy is, needs and wants to be loved and keeps that within the circle of the people that means most to him. As much as they look different thay look similar too. I don’t know if this is confising for you, I know what I think but not sure if I expresed myself clearly enough.
I still remember when Andy was asked after he lost AO final with Federer what are his plans: ” to go back home and be with his dogs, friends and girlfriend, since he hasn’t seen them and missing them.” I understood him completly, and I believe he needs love a lot of it and he gives a lot of the same to people around him, just doesn’t show it the same way Nole does. Sorry if it is a bit confusing.

Thomas Says:

You are right that dimitrov is taller than Federer and wawrinka, but the difference isn’t that big.(as you said) Federer is a 186cm, whereas dimitrov is probably around 189/190 cm. So maybe he can take a few more cm in height than federer, but I still think his backhand can get broken down. Still, he is a big big talent, and I still maintain that if he gets his fitness sorted out he will win majors some day.

Colin Davis Says:

It’s getting to the stage where top players, if they are past their best or going through a bad patch, will definitely not want to be drawn against Robson!
A clay court becomes absurd when there’s a high wind, as not only is the ball hard to control, you may get stuff in your eyes.
Having said that, if it continues windy it will be good for Andy, as he can play in the wind. So, of course, can Rafa.

Margot Says:

@Wog boy
Agree re Andy, his family, friends, team in that order. If he pleases his fans that’s great, but it’s secondary. He was booed in France coming onto the court to play Gasquet. His response was to give a wee smirk. At the end of the match the fickle crowd was booing Gasquet….;) Whereas Nole is far more of an extrovert and wants the crowd to like him. When that doesn’t happen he takes it hard.
Like watching Dimitrov very much. He moves so well and has a gr8 range of shots. Yes, he’s improving all the time too. His backhand, which was a liability against Andy earlier in the year, is better now and so is his ROS. I do think that tiny bit of extra gives him an advantage too.

cena Says:

What’s up with the guys? All I want to see is a couple of top ten American men contenders. If little Spain can produce so many then why not big USA. Where are they???

harry Says:

Nole fans! a look-ahead interview from him (says he came here a week back and has been working hard):

And here is Tignor betting against the “beast” (very unwise of him!):

harry Says:

^– and ST is betting on Tsonga to reach the semis from Feds quarter… don’t know if his intention was to be realistic or sarcastic… i know tsonga really pushed djoko last year @ RG… but still…

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