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French Open Preview

Event Name:   French Open
Where: Roland Garros; Paris, France
Dates: 5/24/15 – 6/7/15
Surface: Clay
Tour: WTA & ATP
Defending Champs: Rafael Nadal & Maria Sharapova
Runner-up:      Novak Djokovic & Simona Halep

The 2015 is loaded with questions and will surely be two weeks of action that we fans will not want miss. Is it time for a “changing of the guard” on the women’s side? If it is who will be there to take over? Underdogs like Carla Suarez Navarro can make a huge push. What? Navarro is ranked 8th and you are calling her an underdog? Yes, she has improved her game that much. She has somehow run into a monster named Serena every time, but she has played great against everyone else. it is hard for me to pick Ivanovic, Bouchard, and Wozniacki just because you never know which one of those ladies will show up. The only person outside of the top 10 that I believe has a chance to win is Vika. You’ll find the reason later on.

On the guy’s only seven of the top eight players have a chance of winning to be frank. David Ferrer is the Aga Radwanska of men’s tennis. Both players receive high rankings, but they can not beat better players. Like ever! Last season Kei Nishikori thrusted himself into the conversation of being the best men’s player, but I do not believe he is ready to win. John Isner continues to play well in none major events, and I expect that trend to press on. More on the chances of Amercians and the French later on.

Women’s Side:

  • All eyes are on Serena as it is her tournament to lose. She seeks to claim major win number twenty and her third straight major victory overall. Will her elbow injury prevent her from a victory?
  • Can Sharapova go into a major tourney without losing in an upset early? She should be able to come out of her quarter easily.
  • Simona Halep is a finalist from last year, will she be able to break through to get her first major win.
  • Victoria Azarenka seems to be getting back to her old self, as she is now healthy. She had Serena down for a couple of match points down in Madrid before choking. Vika is ranked 27th, but is clearly not an underdog. She will most likely face Serena in the 3rd round.
  • 1st round match I am most looking forward to seeing: Venus Williams versus Sloane Stephens. People wrote the 34-year-old Williams off a few years ago, by she has fought off disease and non-believers to get back to being a major championship threat. In 2013, Stephens was pronounced the American heir to Serena’s crown, but she followed up with an awful 2014. Sloane has been up and down all season, as her record is 11-9, but I expect her to put up a battle against Venus.

Men’s side:

  • So this guy named Rafael Nadal has won this event in the past five years. Actually, he has won nine of the past ten French Opens. He will come into the tourney ranked sixth, but I must say that I do not expect him to win this year. For his standards he has been awful on clay. Typically, he wins every match on the red stuff, but he has only won one clay tournament he entered this year. It will be tough; if anyone can defy the odds it’s him.
  • Can Novak finally win the French? No other questions needed.
  • 33-year-old, Roger Federer will pursue his second major at Roland Garros. He has played great in 2015, but can he defeat Novak and Rafa. They seem to be his kryptonite.
  • Will an American break through to win the title? No.
  • Will a Frenchman break through to win the title? No, but they have better chances than the Americans.

Top 32 Seeds:

Seed Men Women
1 Novak Djokovic Serena Wiliams
2 Roger Federer Maria Sharapova
3 Andy Murray Simona Halep
4 Tomas Berdych Petra Kvitova
5 Kei Nishikori Caroline Wozniacki
6 Rafael Nadal Eugenie Bouchard
7 David Ferrer Ana Ivanovic
8 Stan Wawrinka Carla Suárez Navarro
9 Martin Cilic Ekaterina Makarova
10 Grigor Dimitrov Andrea Petkovic
11 Feliciano Lopez Angelique Kerber
12 Gilles Simon Karolina Pliskova
13 Gael Monfils Lucie Safarova
14 Jo-Wilfred Tsonga Aga Radwanska
15 Kevin Anderson Venus Williams
16 John Isner Madison Keys
17 David Goffin Sara Errani
18 Tommy Robredo Svetlana Kuznetsova
19 Roberto Bautista Agut Elina Svitolina
20 Richard Gasquet Sabine Lisicki
21 Pablo Cuevas Garbiñe Muguruza
22 Philipp Kohlschreiber Barbora Strycova
23 Leonardo Mayer Timea Bacsinszky
24 Ernests Gulbis Peng Shuai
25 Ivo Karlovic Jelena Jankovic
26 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez Sam Stosur
27 Bernard Tomic Vika Azarenka
28 Fabio Fognini Flavia Pennetta
29 Nick Kyrgios Alizė Cornet
30 Adrian Mannarino Irina-Camelia Begu
31 Viktor Troicki Caroline Garcia
32 Fernando Verdasco Zarina Diyas

My Predictions: Serena Williams & Novak Djokovic

Other Bloggers say:

Iain’s Tennis & Football Blog

Adjusting The Net

The ATP World Tour Tennis Blog

Ming Yu Musing

Tennis Thoughts

Tennis Translations

Photo: (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

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Australian Open Preview

Event Name:   Australian Open
Where: Melbourne, Australia
Dates: 1/19-2/1
Surface: Hard Court
Tour: Both
Defending Champ: Stan Wawrinka & Li Na
Runner-up:      Rafael Nadal & Dominika Cibulkova

It feels as if the 2015 tennis season just started and players are already down under for the first major of the year. Many different storylines at play for this year’s tournament.

Women’s Side:

  • Is Serena poised for #19. Last season, in the first three major championships she did not make it into the quarterfinals. She is seeking her fifth championship.
  • If Maria Sharapova does go against Serena in the finals, can she figure out a way to beat her?
  • Can someone break through to get their first major title? Players like Simona Halep, Aga Radwanska, Eugenie Bouchard and Caroline Wozniacki.

Men’s Side:

  • Will Stan Wawrinka prove that last year was no fluke?
  • Does Roger have one more push left in him?
  • Can an American make it to the Round of 16? At this point they all seem hopeless.

Juan Martin del Potro has withdrawn from the tournament. Click here for the story.


Seeded Players:

Seed Male Female
1 Novak Djokovic Serena Williams
2 Roger Federer Maria Sharapova
3 Rafael Nadal Simona Halep
4 Stan Wawrinka Petra Kvitova
5 Kei Nishikori Ana Ivanovic
6 Andy Murray Aga Radwanska
7 Tomas Berdych Eugenie Bouchard
8 Milos Raonic Caroline Wozniacki
9 David Ferrer Angelique Kerber
10 Grigor Dimitrov Ekaterina Makarova
11 Ernests Gulbis Dominika Cibulkova
12 Feliciano Lopez Flavia Pennetta
13 Roberto Bautista Agut Andrea Petkovic
14 Kevin Anderson Sara Errani
15 Tommy Robredo Jelena Jankovic
16 Fabio Fognini Lucie Safarova
17 Gael Monfils Carla Suarez Navarro
18 Giles Simon Venus Williams
19 John Isner Alize Cornet
20 David Goffin Sam Stosur
21 Alexandr Dolgopolov Shuai Peng
22 Philipp Kohlschreiber Karolina Pliskova
23 Ivo Karlovic Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
24 Richard Gasquet Garbine Muguruza
25 Julien Benneteau Barbora Zahiaviva Strycova
26 Leonardo Mayer Elina Svitolina
27 Pablo Cuevas Svetlana Kuznetsova
28 Lukas Rosoi Sabine Lisicki
29 Jeremy Chardy Casey Deliacqua
30 Santiago Giraido Varvara Lepchenko
31 Fernando Verdasco Zarina Diyas
32 Martin Klizan Belinda Bencic

For personal reasons, I want to see Serena and Federer win the titles. Who do you want to see take the title home? Comment below.


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Apia International Sydney Preview

Event Name:   Apia International Sydney
Where: Sydney, Australia
Dates: 1/11- 1/17
Surface: Hard
Tour: ATP & WTA
Defending Champ: Juan Martin del Potro & Tsvetana Pironkova
Runner-up:      Bernard Tomic & Angelique Kerber

Both of the tours find their way to the 2015 Apia International Sydney where players will get their final opportunity to prepare for the 2015 Australian Open. Juan Martin del Potro will make his return to tennis after missing nearly a year with a left wrist injury. He went from being ranked 4th to being ranked 135. Del Potro will look to defend his title as he did defeat Bernard Tomic here last season.

The women’s side is star studded. Six of the top ten players will be get a chance to win the championship. Expect Halep, Kvitova, Aga Radwanska, and Wozniacki to make a deep run to set up for the Open.

Notable players in the field:

Men Women
Juan Martin del Potro Simona Halep
Bernard Tomic Petra Kvitova
Sam Querry Agnieszka Radwanska
Fabio Fognini Caroline Wozniacki
David Goffin Angelique Kerber
Philipp Kohlschreiber Sara Errani
Julien Benneteau Sabine Lisicki
Leonardo Mayer Dominika Cibulkova
Jeremy Chardy Ekaterina Makarova
Benjamin Becker Flavia Pennetta

You may also like the previews to the Hobart International and the Heineken Open.

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