Tennis News Wire -
MUTUA MADRID OPEN
Thursday Men's Summary
Singles - Third Round: (1) N Djokovic def. S Wawrinka 7-6(7-5) 6-4
After a rough opening match, it would seem Novak Djokovic is getting a little more comfortable with the conditions here. It appears Stanislas Wawrinka will be right at #20.
Singles - Third Round: (15) F Verdasco def. (2) R Nadal 6-3 3-6 7-5
Yes, you read that score right. And Rafael Nadal was up-front about it, saying he didn't move well in this match and couldn't figure out how to win points. Of course, he blamed it all on the blue clay -- even saying that he won't be back if they don't change it. To give credit where it is due, Fernando Verdasco fought pretty hard. He should gain at least two ranking spots, and has a real shot at the #16 Roland Garros seed. Whereas Nadal now faces at least a slight risk of falling from #2 to #3....
Singles - Third Round: (3) R Federer def. (14) R Gasquet 6-3 6-2
Richard Gasquet has been known to bother Roger Federer on clay -- but obviously not this time! Gasquet, a semifinalist at Rome last year, will be falling out out of the Top Twenty. But Federer has an opportunity: With Nadal out, he can regain the #2 ranking -- if he can win the title here.
Singles - Third Round: (16) A Dolgopolov def. (4) J Tsonga 7-5 3-6 7-6(7-2)
Clay just doesn't reward Jo-Wilfried Tsonga's game, and turning it blue probably just makes it worse. It probably won't affect his ranking; he will be #5 unless David Ferrer wins Madrid. More interesting is what this does for Alexandr Dolgopolov. One more win would likely take him to #16. So he's suddenly in contention for a Top 16 Roland Garros seed.
Singles - Third Round: (5) D Ferrer def. (11) N Almagro 7-6(7-5) 3-6 7-6(10-8)
Whew! David Ferrer still has a shot at returning to #5 this week, but what will he have left after this almost-three-hour marathon? He leaves Nicolas Almagro still stuck at #13.
Singles - Third Round: (6) T Berdych def. (12) G Monfils 6-1 6-1
Gael Monfils will not rise above his current #14, although there isn't much chance that he will fall. Tomas Berdych, who has now defended his points, still has a shot at the #6 ranking this week, although he has a long way to go.
Singles - Third Round: (8) J Tipsarevic def. (9) G Simon 7-6(7-3) 5-7 6-1
Gilles Simon won't rise above his current #12, although it is highly unlikely that he will fall.
Singles - Third Round: (10) J del Potro def. M Cilic 6-2 6-4
With this, Juan Martin del Potro moves past John Isner to clinch his Top Ten spot; he will rise to at least #9. Next target: Janko Tipsarevic and the #8 Roland Garros seed. Marin Cilic, who was a quarterfinalist last year, will lose probably one ranking spot -- which still means that he will likely be one of the top 24 seeds in Paris.
Doubles - Second Round: Qureshi/Roger def. (1) Bryan/Bryan 4-6 6-4 18-16 (Match TB)
Ouch. This is not what the Bryans needed as they tried to regain the #1 ranking. They were defending Rome quarterfinalist points, and Mirnyi/Nestor weren't defending anything. The Bryans may have another shot at #1 next week, as well as at Roland Garros (since Mirnyi/Nestor are defending champions there), but this is a big chance lost...
Doubles - Second Round: (2) Mirnyi/Nestor def. Marrero/Verdasco 6-3 7-6(7-4)
...and Mirnyi/Nestor are padding their lead.
Doubles - Second Round: Granollers/M Lopez def. (3) Llodra/Zimonjic 6-4 6-4
We had wondered, earlier this year, if Llodra/Zimonjic might join the competition for #1 this year. Probably not, based on this -- they are getting to the point where they have to start defending like crazy.
Doubles - Second Round: (5) Paes/Stepanek def. Gasquet/Monfils 6-3 6-4
This wasn't strong opposition, but Paes/Stepanek still look like they could end the year ranked a lot higher than they are now....
Doubles - Second Round: (6) Lindstedt/Tecau def. Cermak/Polasek 4-6 7-6(9-7) 10-7 (Match TB)
Doubles - Second Round: Cilic/Melo def. (8) Melzer/Petzschner 7-6(7-1) 6-3