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  • Hamburg fourth quarter preview: Day two

    5/12/08 3:31 AM | Cheryl Murray
    Hamburg fourth quarter preview: Day two Andy Murray and Marat Safin make their Hamburg debut on Monday as the men's field battles for the third clay Masters shield of the season.

    Andy Murray (18) vs. Dmitry Tursunov

    Andy Murray has long been touted as Britain's next big talent, and talent he has. Results are another matter altogether, however. Murray has not been playing well on clay. He has played three tournaments with a third round and two second round exits to show for it. He will be looking to quiet the critics in Hamburg. His first opponent is the big-hitting Russian Dmitry Tursunov. Though he reached the third round in Barcelona a few weeks ago, Tursunov is not usually an effective clay courter. He tends to be impatient and will go for a winner too soon. Murray has a 3-0 record over Tursunov, but they have played on ever surface but clay. Even though Murray is struggling, he should be able to get past Tursunov. Murray in two.

    Marat Safin vs. Marin Cilic

    Marat Safin was not as fortunate in Hamburg as he had been in Rome and Monte Carlo - this time, he was forced to qualify to get in the tournament - and qualify he did, beating Julian Reister and Evgeny Korolev. The former world number one has seen his ranking drop all the way to 79 in the world; his best result this year was a quarterfinal appearance in Munich two weeks ago, where he lost to Fernando Gonzalez. His first round opponent is the young Croat Marin Cilic, ranked number 48. Cilic also advanced to the quarters in Munich. It is tempting to give Cilic the edge, simply because Safin has been so inconsistent, but the qualifying may have actual favor the big Russian. The wins could give him a much-needed jolt of confidence. Safin in three.



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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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