The North American summer hard court season is into its third week as the players battle it out for the sixth ATP 1000 event of the year in Montreal, Canada for the Roger’s Cup. Only the two time Roger Federer and David Ferrrer are missing in action among the top ten. The world number one Novak Djokovic playing in his first match after claiming his third Wimbledon title in July, recorded his 250th Masters 1000 win with a routine 6-3,7-6(4) win over the Brazilian left hander Thomaz Bellucci.
There was not much luck for the local favourite Milos Raonic who is still recovering from a foot injury he sustained in May. He was unceremoniously bundled out in two tie-break sets by the big serving Croatian Ivo Karlovic. The scoreline was 7-6(1), 7-6(1) in favour of Karlovic who slammed 22 aces and became only the second man to join the 10000-ace club. He just needs another 180 aces to surpass fellow countryman Goran Ivanisevic who is the all time leader with 10,184 aces.
Scotland’s Andy Murray, seeded second here and who lost in the first round at last week’s Citi Open in Washington D.C., will resume his round of 32 match against the Spanish veteran Tommy Robredo. It was suspended by rain with the score at 4-4, 40-30 on Murray’s serve in the first set.
Japan’s Kei Nishikori who won last week at the Citi Open, Spain’s Rafael Nadal who won the clay court event in Hamburg the week before and the French Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland headline a star studded line up on Day 3 as places are up for grabs for the round of 16. Djokovic and Karlovic have already booked their places. The defending champion, Jo Wilfred Tsonga of France, who won last year’s title in Toronto beating Federer in the final will also feature today having already won his opening match against the Croatian teenager Borna Coric 6-4,6-4.
The fourteen matches still to be decided with my picks mentioned first are as under :-
Kei Nishikori (4) v. Pablo Andujar
Rafael Nadal (7) v. Sergiy Stakhovsky
Andy Murray (2) v. Tommy Robredo
Stanislas Wawrinka (3) v. Nick Kyrgios
John Isner (16) v. Vasek Pospisil
Giles Simon (9) v. Mikhail Youzhny
Tomas Berdych (5) v. Donald Young
Jo Wilfred Tsonga (10) v. Roberto Bautiasta Agut
Grigor Dmitrov (14) v. Jack Sock
Marin Cilic (6) v. Bernard Tomic
Jeremy Chardy v. Leonardo Mayer
David Goffin (13) v. Sam Querrey
Lucas Rosol v. Ernests Gulbis
The reigning U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic of Croatia and the American John Isner who won the BB & T Open in Atlanta in the first week of the US OPEN SERIES will be looking to continue their improved form but would be severely tested by the Australian Bernard Tomic and the local lad Vasek Pospisil respectively. The Canadian who had reached the quarter-final at Wimbledon losing to Federer, has earned a wild card into the main draw. The Bulgarian Grigor Dmitrov who has had a forgettable year so far also faces a stern test against the American Jack Sock.
– Rasesh Mehta [Rasesh Mehta is an analyst with the Tennis Galaxy.You can reach him at the email: firstname.lastname@example.org]