Yet again, Caroline Wozniacki has made me look bad. This time it comes in the form of a 6-1, 6-3 loss to #28 Daniela Hantuchova, who I said yesterday “had no ability to finish” big matches. What I forgot was that #1 Wozniacki has had a very limited ability to finish her own difficult matches this year. Her loss “opens up” the top half of the bracket to some degree, although I’m not sure playing Wozniacki would have been viewed as any more difficult that playing Hantuchova.
At any rate, most of the intrigue of the women’s bracket, from a male perspective, has to be on the bottom half, where it is still possible to have #7 Maria Sharapova, #4 Victoria Azarenka and Sorana Cirstea each make it to the quarterfinals, where they could be joined by the winner of tomorrow’s match between Arantxa Rus and #25 Maria Kirilenko.
4th-seeded Victoria Azarenka of Belarus has her best shot yet at the Hottie Belt
World No. 99 Sorana Cirstea of Romania had a disappointing 2010, but was a quarterfinalist at the 2009 French Open, where she first threw her hat into the ring.
*** Match of the Day ***
The beautiful Maria Kirilenko (left) will try to knock off Thursday’s stunner Arantxa Rus (right) in Round 3 on Saturday.
|#25 seed Maria Kirilenko of Moscow, Russia|
|World No. 114 Arantxa Rus of Monster, South Holland|
Maria Sharapova seeks to complete her career grand slam and take back the Hottie Belt in unanimous fashion.
I wonder if the television ratings would be higher than usual if four of these five ladies staged their own “conference final four” on the bottom half of the draw. In related news, Azarenka and Kirilenko are playing doubles together, and are through to the round of 16. The duo is seeded fifth.
On the men’s side, #3 Roger Federer looked very sharp in smoking #29 Janko Tipsarevic in three sets. #7 David Ferrer dominated #31 Sergiy Stakhovsky, dropping only five games. I predicted a 5-set win for Ferrer; off by just a tad. As I write this, #14 Stan Wawrinka has just come back from two sets down to defeat #17 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in front of his home crowd. Djokovic holds a one-set lead over del Potro.
Once the field gets down to 16, I will post my bracket that predicts the final four rounds of each field. Feel free to bet against it to make some easy money.