Roger will be leading the strongest field ever at the ATP tournament in Halle which starts on June 8. Halle is one of the warm-up tournaments for Wimbledon and Roger has been ruling it with an iron fist, capturing his fifth title last year by beating Philip Kohlschreiber 6-3, 6-4. He has won an incredible 25 straight matches there and has never been beaten at the event. He won four straight titles from 2003-06 but didn’t play in 2007 because of injury, and then he won it again last year. Joining him will be Djokovic, Verdasco and Jo-Wilfred Tsonga, making it four members of the top ten in the draw. The Queen’s Club tournament which is played on the same week as Halle is usually the stronger of the two tournaments, but Roger has always preferred to play in Halle.
I can’t help but wonder what kind of form Roger will be in come Halle. He has two more tournaments to go, Madrid and the French Open. Can he make the final at Madrid and Roland Garros? My instincts once again says no. In my poll 15 people so far said Roger will soon get things back together by himself, while 7 people said things will continue to get worse for Roger until there comes a drastic change. One person said I am losing it. Only one hater? I was hoping for more My vote was one of the seven that said things will continue to get worse for Roger. Remember the polls I took for Indian Wells and Miami? By far the most people thought Roger was going to win the tournament on both occasions yet he lost in the semi-finals of both.
I know the polls is a guess and many people just vote what they want to see happening, but I’m afraid because of what has been transpiring of late I’m in the camp of the people who think things will get worse for him. But once again that is just my opinion, and I can understand why people want to believe that things will get better not worse. I’m just tired of getting disappointed and from now on I will expect the worst. That way I can’t be disappointed and when something good happens it’s a bonus. So in spirit of my new found ‘pessimism’ I will predict that Roger won’t make the final of Madrid. If he is in the same half of the draw as Djokovic at the French Open I predict that he won’t make the final either, which could turn out to be a blessing in disguise.
Roger made it clear in the last interview that he is thinking about winning the French Open, but I think that is a little unrealistic considering his form of late and I’m not buying into the whole idea of not facing Rafa before the French Open as being a good thing. I think he has to at least make the final at Madrid and beat Djokovic along the way. Otherwise he will go into the French Open with too little confidence. The draws at both Madrid and the French Open will be important. If Roger and Djokovic is not in the same half at Roland Garros then Roger will be the favorite to make the final, and depending on what happens in Madrid he may lose to Djokovic once again should they be in the same half of the draw at the French Open.
I know it’s all becoming a bit hypothetical at this point so lets just wait until the end of Madrid. Personally I don’t see how he will turn it around against Djokovic and there is a good chance he will lose to Djokovic at the French Open should they be in the same half. That in turn could be a blessing in disguise as Roger doesn’t want to go into Wimbledon after being trashed by Rafa at the French Open again. It would be interesting to see what happens at Halle if Roger and Djokovic run into each other there. Even if he keeps losing to Djokovic on clay I’m sure he would fancy his chances on grass still. I hope Roger can resurrect things come Wimbledon, but it may take longer then that. He will probably have his best chance for a grand slam title at the US Open this year.