Federer, Nadal Begin March To US Open Quarters; Serena Opens Title Defense
by Sean Randall | August 26th, 2013, 9:17 am

It’s Go Time at the final Major on the 2013 tennis calendar. In just a few hours the US Open kicks off with a busy, star-filled first day schedule. Tennis greats Roger Federer and Serena Williams headline opening night but before then Serena’s sister Venus and the hottest player in the game, Rafael Nadal, hold court.

Nadal enters having won his last 19 hardcourt matches nad after missing the 2012 US Open he’s impoibably the favorite to win his second US Open crown this fortnight.

“The US Open is a great event,” Nadal said. “To have the US Open in one of the most important cities of the world like New York, it is great for our sport. Last year I watched this event on the TV. This year I have the chance to be here. That’s great. All of that is fantastic for me. Now I have a chance to be ready, to compete with the right attitude, you know, try my best in every moment. I can lose, I can win, but only thing that is sure is I am practising with the best I have, and I am going to compete with all I have.”

Nadal, who has won nine titles this season including the last two Masters events in Canada and Cincinnati, could overtake Novak Djokovic at the No. 1 spot if he wins it all two Mondays from now. Rafa begins against the same man he played in his return on hardcourts this March at Indian Wells, Ryan Harrison.

The 21-year-old Harrison has slumped since breaking the Top 50 on the tour last season. Harrison has weapons, some moxie and some game but against the bigger names on the tour he’s yet to get in the win columns – Ryan’s 0-19 against Top 10 players. Today, that’ll go to 0-20.

Also this afternoon, David Ferrer faces the raw, powerful Australian teen Nick Kyrios. Richard Gasquet, the other favorite in that soft third quarter, faces American veteran Michael Russell.

Ernests Gulbis, Bernard Tomic and Fernando Verdasco are also on the Monday schedule.

The action, though, may be on the women’s side during the day. Two-time champ Venus returns for what could be her final US Open against Wimbledon semifinalist Kirsten Flipkens. The dimiutive Belgian doesn’t have much pedigree on the US Open cement but she did just beat Venus in a three sets over the summer.

Former finalist Jelena Jankovic locks up with rising American star Madison Keys. Australian Open champion Slaone Stephens meets Mandy Minella.

In the evening, Serena begins her US Open title defense against former French Open winner Francesca Schiavone. The entertaining Italian should offer some resistence for the World No. 1 but it’s hard to see Serena slipping up before the finals here.

“I’m definitely really excited,” Serena said who just lost to Victoria Azarenka last weekend at Cincinnati. “Every time I lose, I get so pumped afterwards. I just feel that way. I just feel like now I’m ready; now I’m prepared. I almost needed that to take my game to a new level.”

Then Federer is scheduled to take the stage against Grega Zemlja. Federer has been so shaky this summer and it wouldn’t surprise me if we see a few more wobbles tonight. The Slovenian Zemla beat the Federer-like Grigor Dimitrov at Wimbledon this year so while on paper this looks like an overwhelming mismatch, the reality is Federer could lose to just about anyone these days.

“It’s important that I concentrate on my game and that the passion is there, that I work the right way, that I’m prepared, and then that I feel like I can win a tournament,” the now-7th ranked Federer. “Clearly want to move up from here. I only have the quarters to defend, so I hope I can add some points to the rankings.”

Federer could meet Nadal next week in the quarterfinals.

Tennis Channel and ESPN2 will have live coverage of the Open starting at 11am ET.

Arthur Ashe Stadium 11:00 am Start Time
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)[3] vs. Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP)
Not Before: 1.00pm
Kirsten Flipkens (BEL)[12] vs. Venus Williams (USA)
Ryan Harrison (USA) vs. Rafael Nadal (ESP)[2]
Arthur Ashe Stadium 7:00 pm Start Time
Serena Williams (USA)[1] vs. Francesca Schiavone (ITA)
Roger Federer (SUI)[7] vs. Grega Zemlja (SLO)

Louis Armstrong Stadium 11:00 am Start Time
Olga Govortsova (BLR) vs. Na Li (CHN)[5]
Richard Gasquet (FRA)[8] vs. Michael Russell (USA)
Mandy Minella (LUX) vs. Sloane Stephens (USA)[15]
Not Before: 5.30pm
Nick Kyrgios (AUS) vs. David Ferrer (ESP)[4]

You Might Like:
In Preparation For His London Title Defense, Novak Djokovic Took A Cable Car Ride [Video]
U.S. Olympic Tennis Preview: Tough Draws for Blake, Men
Kenin, Pliskova Lead 4 Top 10s In Abu Dhabi
US Open Men’s Draw: Nadal v Federer Quarter; Murray Looking Good In First Slam Defense
Serena Leads Strong WTA Lexington Field, Could Meet Venus In 2R

Don't miss any tennis action, stay connected with Tennis-X

Get the FREE TX daily newsletter

54 Comments for Federer, Nadal Begin March To US Open Quarters; Serena Opens Title Defense

gannu Says:

have zilch hopes from Federer these days…cant even expect him to win a first round…and he is utterly delusional…its no longer optimism…why the hell he doesn’t admit he is at the worst point in the past 10 yrs…yet he stays I was close , I could have won blah blah…feel very frustrated and have lost interest in this sport…guess I hv realised that for me Feddy bear is bigger than the game…

Hope some one destroys nadal…atleast feddy bear’s records could be safe ;-)

hawkeye Says:

^^^ At least gannu is honest, no?


Giles Says:

Vamos Rafa!!

queen Says:

Records are to be broken. Vamos!!!

Peter Says:

He played great against Nadal just several weeks ago.

Giles Says:

Vamos Champ.

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Kie Nishikori is a set down to Britains Dan Evans,i love Kie but the patriotic Brit gal in me wants an upset,so go Dan.

Eric Says:

James Blake is retiring after the USO: here’s wishing him a great last hurrah.


Margot Says:

2 sets now hippy chicky :) Yay Evo!

Margot Says:

Wow hippy chick, Brando and other Brits. Dan only went and did it!
Wonder how many got that in our bracket challenge….;)

Perfect fan Says:

Omg! an upset already within couple of hours of the tournament..o good lord! wats there in store for the upcoming days.

Anyways..happy journey back home to tokyo Kei ;)

Ty Says:

Well, this is Gulbis’ (last?) chance to do some damage at a major. He’s in a winnable quarter and could meet Nadal (who he’s troubled) in the semifinals. You can’t bet on him, but if he’s ever going to do something, this is his best opportunity.

Ty Says:

These young guys – “they have no mabbews”

nadalista Says:

Venus Williams should be indicted for crimes against fashion.

skeezer Says:

^looks better than pirate pants.

Alex Says:

Shame, Harisson has had some tough draws at the Slams.

queen Says:

Pirate pants are long gone:[ wish he wore them again:D

hawkeye Says:

Nothing will ever beat Fed’s humble seargent-pepper jacket with matching lame gold manbag from 2009 Wimby.


nadalista Says:

Well, Rafa has an excuse, he doesn’t have Anna Wintour as his stylist……

Dan Martin Says:

I have my predictions for today’s men’s matches up and will have predictions everyday at http://tennisabides.com I’ll add women’s pick when the draw gets to a point where I have something intelligible to say. I know the top 20-25 pretty well but past that ….

I think Nadal-Harrison is a good measuring stick for his work with Jay Berger.

skeezer Says:

You guys are quick to be critical of anyone not named Rafael Nadal. Oh yeah, uh uh, his fashion statements through the years have had there cheesy moments ;).

Giles Says:

Vamos Rafa!

Giles Says:

And Venus, get rid of the clown costume!

hawkeye Says:

4, 2 and 2.


Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Margot yipee yeah soooo happy for Dan,well done young man,and our gal Laura serving a bagel no less,come on the Brits :-D..

nadalista Says:

One down, six to go……


Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Good 1st round performance from Rafa,i was nervous after what happened at Wimbledon.

Giles Says:

Gulbis out!!!

Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

Who does Rafa play next Giles??

the DA Says:

hehe Typical Gulbis. He had a golden opportunity to go deep.

Giles Says:

@alison. I think winner of the Popsicle match.

queen Says:

He will play popsicle

Van Orten Says:

Every Fan who wants Rafa or Fed Out beföre the quarter finals dont Understand their rivelary …for Most if Not any Fed supporter and himself a Win at this Stage of his career ‘d just be amazing as he has nothing to lose. Nadal on the other Hand had his übershare of success vs Fed…he’ d get over it Petty quickly too.

“Football is a simple game; 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans always win.”
Gary lineker

Nadal always wins.

Fed can live with that?!!

Ty Says:


He may be financially set, but wow what a loser.

I have officially revoked my support from his campaign as a human. (I know he is devastated by this admission on my part).

Tennis for Life Says:

I don’t think any Rafa fan would want Fed to be out before the quarters. What a delicious cup cake draw.

Tennis for Life Says:

This draw has presented a great opportunity to set the h2h right with Davy and then complete
the fedowner slam.

Teeg Says:

Wow, Gulbis! I really thought he had a chance to go deep and perhaps upset Ferrer. Guess I really shouldn’t be surprised though.

Thought Rafa looked very comfortable out there. Not to taxing on his body and he was taking some cuts on the return. He needs to be as efficient as possible in these early rounds.

Okiegal Says:

Vamos, Rafa…..good win today! Good luck for the rest of the tourney…..and by the way……You look good in whatever you wear. Fed always looks sharp too. The two best dressed tennis players on the planet. Hope to see them play each other at the USO, 2013. Okiegal is cheering for Rafa!!!

Humble Rafa Says:

What is the reason for the delay in the Arrogant One-No Name match?

Are they waiting for God to arrive?

Anna Says:

Easy Peasy for Rafa today. Thankfully he got his match completed on the day scheduled. Guess we’ll see Roger play tomorrow. Anyway, it was a good start and he looks sooo gorgeous in grey and white. The guy can pull off anything :).

Humble Rafa Says:

Great Davy is building on his dynasty. What a win for the bald one. His final set was so amazing that the betters gave up after 5 games!

skeezer Says:

“he looks sooo gorgeous in grey and white…”

Oh yes, oh yes…tennis is ok..but not most important. The bod, the bod..omg the bod.

The Great Davy Says:

Humble Rafa,

Please win the next match against Duarte Silver. You will have very lucky to win, but please, I would rather beat you along my first US Open title.

skeezer Says:


HR “Humble Rafa” has a conversation with HR (aka The Great Davy,TGD), himaelf.

The blog must be slow and desperate for this appearance of mutriple one man show posts. But afterall, he’s yet to find a real comedy job, so he tries his schick here, hoping to get noticed.


nadalista Says:

RT @RafaelNadal: “Tonight we’ve dinner very good at #Manzanilla, the new adventure of #DaniGarcia in #NYC! pic.twitter.com/islFDkZLga”

I love me a man who appreciates good food……


nadalista Says:


Please don’t tell me this is what Fed is going to be wearing, please say it ain’t so……….


Tennis x Hippy Chic Says:

I liked the look of Rafas he kept it plain and simple,as for Roger he always looks classy anyway,the exception been that pink combo he wore some months ago.

Tennis Fan Says:

People can chirp all they want about Fed. He is and was the greatest Tennis Player of all time. You can put that in your face and read it once a day!


hawkeye Says:

^^^ delete “is and”


skeezer Says:

^^^^add it back in where it belongs


Giles Says:

Nike creations get better and better!! Lol

hawkeye Says:

Mimicry is the sincerest form of flattery.


hawkeye Says:

Gilles, hahahha!


Top story: Serena's Begins Farewell Tour Tonight In Toronto v Bencic; Gauff v Rybakina; Osaka, Raducanu Out