Djokovic and Nadal Survive First Round in Beijing

Hello, tennis fans. All but two first round matches have been completed in Beijing and already we’ve had two upsets with fifth seed Raonic and eighth seed Tsonga losing to Troicki and Haider-Maurer respectively. Tsonga was in Nadal’s quarter so that helps his chances of making semis. Nadal defeated China’s second highest ranked player Wu 6-4, 6-4 in his first round. A pretty expected result, given Wu’s ranking.

Nadal now plays Pospisil which is another very winnable match. Given Tsonga’s exit, he should really try to make at least semis here. I see Fognini is in his half and I’d love to see another Fogini vs Nadal match in the semis, but Fogini has a pretty tough draw with Goffin next and then potentially Berdych in the quarters. In the top half, Djokovic showed no sign of burnout whatsoever as he destroyed Bolleli 6-1, 6-1.

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Bolleli had some good results of late including beating Berdych in St. Petersburg and he is ranked just outside the top 50 now. He can certainly play a bit, and yet Djokovic only allowed him two games. Scary stuff. I guess Djokovic didn’t appreciate the fact that Bolleli bageled his brother in the last round of qualifying so he handed him two breadsticks for his trouble. Djokovic clearly loves this event.

He owns it with a 25-0 match record and 5 titles. He is going to be awfully hard to stop again this year because since that Thailand exhibition he’s looked awfully confident and fresh. So I guess my theory that things have changed since 2011 was correct. I don’t think the competition is going to be so lucky this time around. As far as I’m concerned he is the favorite for Beijing, Shanghai, Paris, and London.

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The Djoker and his bro teamed up to win their doubles too

But we will see how it plays out. Beijing is a kind of warmup event for him for Shanghai and even dropping a set seems unlikely. He now plays the Chinese number one Zhang and maybe for the sake of the home crowd he should be a little less brutal than he was against Bolleli. Isner defeated Thiem 7-5, 6-1 which I guess is kind of expected given Thiem’s questionable return game. So we will probably have an Isner vs Djokovic quarterfinal.

Then in the second quarter with the departure of Raonic Ferrer will probably come through which would be another fun match if he plays Djokovic. The top half looks pretty one-sided with Djokovic there, but it will be interesting to see who makes the final from the bottom half. It could be anyone of Berdych, Nadal, Fognini, or Goffin. Fognini has the talent to do it but first we will have to see which Fognini shows up.

  • Highlights

The is in your court.

Posted in ATP 500, Beijing.

2 Comments

  1. I agree with your feeling that Novak was overzealous with Bolelli. He didn’t like bagel served to Djordje and was looking for revenge. I thought that Djordje has actually done well to take 4 games of Bolelli and this should encourage him to continue playing. If he makes top 200 it would be a success and he could do even better with support he got (I wouldn’t give up in his position). Novak looks impressive. I do hope that he will allow Zhang to take 2-4 games per set if he is in position to control the match in that way. If Zhang is stronger than that, Novak will have to play maximally concentrated and than any result is possible. For Zhang the real measure of success would be not how many games he took off Djokovic, but whether he forced him to play maximally concentrated.

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Hi, George. Djokovic is a nice guy so I can actually see him giving Zhang a couple of games. But since this is professional tennis I’m not necessarily for it. I think 2-4 games per set is too much anyway. It will depend on Zhang too. If he plays well and takes that many games then he deserves it. But he is ranked outside the top 200 so I don’t think Djokovic should allow him too many games. Maybe just one or two games for the sake of the crowd.

    [Reply]

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