• Murray, Wawrinka square off in U.S. Open third round

    9/5/10 5:49 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Murray, Wawrinka square off in U.S. Open third round Andy Murray and Stanislas Wawrinka are set for a second career meeting at the U.S. Open, having first faced each other in New York two years ago. This time, a spot in the fourth round will be at stake on Sunday.

    Familiar foes Andy Murray and Stanislas Wawrinka will be meeting for the ninth time in their careers and seventh time in the past three seasons when they clash in the third round of the U.S. Open on Sunday. Murray leads the head-to-head series 5-3, having prevailed most recently in a 2-6, 6-3, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3 thriller at Wimbledon in 2009. The two players also faced each other at the 2008 U.S. Open, with Murray advancing in far more comfortable straight-set fashion.

    Wawrinka will have to raise his level if he is expecting a different outcome this time, as Murray is in scary form at the moment. The fourth-ranked Scot won the U.S. Open Series thanks to a runner-up finish in Los Angeles, a title in Toronto, and a quarterfinal showing in Cincinnati. So far this week Murray has destroyed Lukas Lacko and Dustin Brown. The No. 4 seed, the runner-up at this event in 2008, is now 34-12 for his 2010 campaign.

    Meanwhile, Wawrinka's season was slow to get off the ground as he took time off for the birth of his first child and it has never really materialized. The Swiss is a respectable 28-13, but he is well off his career-high ranking at No. 27 in the world. Still, Wawrinka appears to be picking up the pace in New York with routine wins over Mikhail Kukushkin and Juan Ignacio Chela.

    "He's a very, very difficult player," Murray noted. "Had a match with him at Wimbledon that was one of the best atmospheres I played in. I played him in a night match here, which was a little bit different. He's had a lot of close matches with top players before."

    Wawrinka would do well just to keep this one close. The underdog would much prefer a slower surface on which to play Murray, so don't be surprised if this one--like in 2008--is over in straight sets.

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croc , 9/5/10 9:58 AM

If Almagro can get pass Querrey, then he may a dangerous player for Murray, though seriously I don't know which Almagro will turn up- the one that played a five set thriller against Tsonga at AO this year, or the one who played against Murray earlier this year at either IW or Miami. Other than that I think none left in his quarter can trouble him, not Llodra, not Youzhny, not Isner.

luckystar , 9/5/10 11:53 AM

I don't see any problem for Rafa from now on, until the SF or even the Final. However matches have to be played so anything can happen from now on. I'll keep my fingers crossed, sit back and enjoy all the remaining matches.

luckystar , 9/5/10 1:07 PM

I think Nalby will be a bigger challenge to Rafa, Ferrer always has a huge awe playing Rafa. So Nalby is the only guy with the mental strength, but Verdasco might just prevent this from happening. Rafa will happily rll on to play Murray.
Stan's the man, he will get off to a good start, but the problem is his intensity dips and as the match drags on Murray is more at advantage. So either a good match for Stan or either a long 4 setter for Murray.
I don't know why Melzer will be a threat to Fed, I think Fed will roll over both Melzer (straight sets) and Sod in 4 sets.

justtennis , 9/5/10 1:34 PM

luckystar: it all depends who is winning whether we enjoy the matches or not :) I, too, am confident Rafa is on course to reach SF and I hope it will be Murray there to greet him.

ed251137 , 9/5/10 1:39 PM

you have to be joking if you believe that Fed will have a problem with Melzer.
Fed will not have a problem with anyone till the finals.Ok Sod and Djokovic might entend himto 4 sets but no more.
In the finals Fed will have his hands full against rafa or Murray BUT he can get really lucky if Rafa and Murray beat the hell out of each other in a long fivesetter in the SF. That wud be an ideal scenario for Fed and the possibility of that happeneing his pretty high

atul1985 , 9/5/10 2:04 PM

ed, there are only two, or maybe three players left in the draw that I'll root for. Of course the first one is Rafa, followed by Nole and then Llodra.

I'll continue to root for the other two until they face Rafa (if that happens). I love LLodra's game and wish to see it for as long as possible, though I know it will end at the QF, latest. I like Nole and hope he does well this tournament, and since he is in the opposite half of the draw from Rafa, I hope he reaches the final. That way, he'll regain no.2 and Fed will become no.3. I want to see Rafa and Nole finish this season as no.1 & no.2 respectively, and continue this way for the coming season too, so that Nole will not end up in Rafa's half of the draw come the FO and all the clay masters. I simply think that Nole can beat Fed regularly on clay had they met more frequently. I will not root against Rafa, ever, so naturally I'll want to see him wins this USO.

I do enjoy watching other players play - Verdasco/Nalby; Gasquet/Monfils; Nole/Fish; Murray/Stan, Querrey/Almagro. Llodra/Robredo and Lopez/Stakhovsky - all are interesting to me, other than Rafa's match.

I do not look forward to Youzhny/Isner - stressful to watch because of all the aces,aces and more aces and three shots end the point type of game. Fed/Melzer won't be competitive, likewise for Sod/Montanes. I think Ferrer vs that Traver guy may be interesting too, I hope so.

luckystar , 9/5/10 2:46 PM

Anyone who thinks the spaniards are in awe of Rafa must really be joking, least of all Ferrer. Think how Nando stretched him at OZ, and Ferrer does give him a good challenge.

nadline , 9/5/10 4:32 PM

OK let us look at it this way .. Rafa will beat the shit out of any Spaniard across the net. Verdasco is remembered for that one epic 5 set loss - yeah right .. nothing else comes to my mind .. he has not done nothing much other than that ...

Fed has a mountain to climb to come back to No.1 .. the year end ourneys are good places to pick up points .. so it is for Rafa too .. except for 1 Shanghai runners-up Rafa has everything to gain ... Rafa as No.1 is pretty well guaranteed .. Djoker as No.2 .. that's interesting .. so the SF (if it happens) between Fed and Nole will be the battle for the No.2 ...

justtennis , 9/5/10 6:01 PM

I think they should pay Isner and Karlovic to play an exhibition match in a tournament, but not compete, because they don't play tennis, they just serve. They know that it nigh impossible to break their serve, and it's written all over their faces. In fact you can sense the shock if they get broken, because their whole strategy is built around their serve.

I just see them as a stumbling block in the draw, because they are just like watching paint dry.

nadline , 9/5/10 6:21 PM

Wawrinka pushing Andy around the court a bit ... he's up a break in the first set. Early days.

smr , 9/5/10 9:39 PM

muzz 1 set and 5-4 up but this is painful to watch. talk about winning ugly. muzz just started going walkabouts again at 3-0 up when stan was down and out.

alex , 9/5/10 11:06 PM

muzz just gone to pot in the second set. really doesn't look a top 30 player tonight, never ming #4.

alex , 9/5/10 11:23 PM

Stan the Man !! This match is much more exciting than Nadal vs Simon; although probably not as much fun for Andy's fans.

smr , 9/5/10 11:30 PM

smr, it is an exciting match isn't it?
Wawrinka is showing his Stan the Man persona, playing well, but imo Murray should prevail, as soon as he gets his act together and attacks more. He is having a bit of an off day today it seems, talking to himself a lot. He breaks and is broken right back, isn't calm at all.
It is indeed a battle!

Sanela , 9/5/10 11:40 PM

It's a good thing we can't hear what Andy is saying to himself and his team ...
Sanela, yes Andy should be winning ... seems every time he gets ahead he relaxes and Wawrinka brings the heat.

smr , 9/5/10 11:50 PM

Boo! Looks as if Andy's gonna lose :( A bad day at the office :(

deuce , 9/6/10 12:06 AM

deuce, this is tennis, it's not over until the fat lady sings.

nadline , 9/6/10 12:10 AM

This match has gone from exciting to worrisome unfortunately, almost like the battle between Andy and Stan turned into internal or personal battles of some sort - Stan battling his injury, Andy also not feeling physically great and in addition, having some inner battles with himself. Andy must pick it up though, and fast if he is to win here. The commentators are saying he is struggling regarding which tactics to play against Stan?

Sanela , 9/6/10 12:13 AM

Ahh, this would be very sad if either of these two lose because of injury. Although, they both seem to be struggling at the moment Wawrinka seems to be a bit more focused.
So sad for Andy if he loses here.

smr , 9/6/10 12:23 AM

alex: looks as if Andy is gonna disappoint us yet again but also looks as if he's injured so it's bad news whatever.

deuce , 9/6/10 12:27 AM

deuce, I think Wawrinka may have a more serious injury. They still have more tennis to play.

smr , 9/6/10 12:34 AM

smr: trying very very hard to appeal to my better nature and NOT wish Stan an injury, but my goodness hard work!

deuce , 9/6/10 12:42 AM

Andy obviously stuggling through pain ... those Scots are tough.

smr , 9/6/10 12:53 AM

"winning! ugly? that was losing ugly. As I said, deuce, I accept full responsibility:(

alex , 9/6/10 1:06 AM

Wow ...
deuce ... it is NO fun when your fav player loses because of an injury. Murray was seriously one of the favourites to win this slam. Johnny Mac thinks 2011 is his year... so there is still hope.

smr , 9/6/10 1:09 AM

alex: yep you jinxed him. I hold you fully responsible :( That bloody serve.
smr: you're gr8 mate :) Guess we'll find out at the pressie if he was really injured. Perhaps he just underestimated Stan.

deuce , 9/6/10 1:15 AM

Well said, smr. A sad day for Murray's fans, hope Andy gets well soon... It is bad to see one of the favourites go, makes the tournament less exciting to say the least.

Credit to Stan, he played a solid game, still moved well despite the huge amount of tape on his leg.

Sanela , 9/6/10 1:18 AM

So sorry about Murray. Commies to his fans, especially Alex and Deuce. Poor Andy seems unable to be in tip top condition physically for the USO, last year with his wrist problem and this year his knee. Really don't know what can be done. In fact at Cincy, Andy seemed already having some problem with his knee. Maybe he has to cut down on his warm up tournaments?

Stan did play well enough to outlast Andy, staying focused despite his own injury. I think the one person who benefit from this match is Querrey. He had an easy match against Almagro today, winning in straight sets. I hope Stan can recover in time for his round of 16 match against Querrey.

Once again commiserations to all Murray fans, hope he does better next year, especially in the slams.

luckystar , 9/6/10 1:21 AM

smr - i know what johnny mac said and I think he only said it out of his affection for rafa. I didn't agree with mac then and I don't now. If muzz was going to do it, this was it. he's at his peak and with every passing slam now it's going to get less and less likely. not that i won't be gunning for him. go for it in oz ,muzz! wawrinka was ok, but muzz couldn't beat himself tonight.

That said, I wish rafa all the best now, hope he does it.

fed must be purring though.

alex , 9/6/10 1:24 AM

alex, I wouldn't count Murray out so easily. So sorry about the match. He was obviously in pain tonight. I was watching his Mom who didn't sem to be cheering at all ... just watching on like a concerned parent.

smr , 9/6/10 1:35 AM

smr - thnx

alex , 9/6/10 1:37 AM

deuce and alex, sorry you can't go to bed with a smile on you faces today.

Andy's 1st 2 rounds did him no favours, they were too easy, and not enough to get him into the groove. I also think he should stop believing the hype, as a player, he should know what his form is, and not get carried away by the fact that he beat this or that person to win his last title.

nadline , 9/6/10 1:42 AM

Oh man, I see Andy up a set, go to play tennis, come back, and see that he's lost! :( Looks like Rafa has a very navigable road to the final now -- and all the players left that I really like are stuck beating on each other on the other side.

Also, hi guys :). Been lurking for a while, but this is my first post.

nsheorey , 9/6/10 1:56 AM

Poor Andy, is he going to have any self confidence left after this?!

Sorry guys :(. I really thought he would win this.

stu , 9/6/10 2:25 AM

Unfortunately, this loss for Murray is probably a good thing, as I am a firm believer that things happen in life to teach us lessons. Who knows what was going on in his head today, but he must learn to quite his mind. I think mentally he was playing too far ahead of himself.
Whether he or Wawrinka we legit with their injurys, I am not going to judge, but either way the stronger man mentally won today.

I have no doubt Murray will win a slam at one point, but he needs to sort out his head, very much like Djokovic, but the good news for Djokovic is that I think he is close to sorting himself out. The old Djokovic would never have won his 5 setter in the scorching heat. In my opinion, that was Djokovic's turning point.
Murray can do it to.

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 3:43 AM

Poor Murray .. he has o do it all over again in 2012 the monkey on his shoulder still firmly on ... man his expectations as a Scot/Brit/UK... d take a toll ...
Rafa must be doing a jig singing ... "somebody stop me" ... yeah only the other half has a say now ... come on Fed :)

justtennis , 9/6/10 3:47 AM

rafa isnt doing a jig of happiness, because he doesnt look past his next match and he would probably feel for Murray, because Rafa knows what it is like to lose that RG 09 to Soderling.
The people left on his side are not saps. Verdasco is lethal when on fire and I am sure Rafa hasnt forgotten their 5 setter semi at the AO 09.

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 3:59 AM

Yes Isa you are right. Rafa won't take things for granted. For him, it's one match at a time . I'm sure Rafa will feel sorry for Murray, they are on very good terms. Furthermore Rafa is not one who wished ill upon others just to benefit himself, I don't think he'll be happy singing now, no, not Rafa.

luckystar , 9/6/10 4:56 AM


Now I will tell you about the feeling that I had. I wanted to wait until after the Istomin match and that pretty much confirmed my feeling that Rafa is serving amazingly well and the rest of his game is falling into place. My feeling was that if Rafa and Murray did meet in the semis, that Rafa would beat him. So much for my feelings, because now that can't happen.

I wanted to express my condolences to Murray fans on his tough loss today to Wawa. It's not easy to see your favorite go out when he was considered one of the big favorites to win the USO. I thought that Wawa played some brilliant tennis and managed to keep his nerves in check to get the win. He was struggling with that taped thigh and seemed to be in some discomfort, but he was really tough and showed some grit and heart.

I always say the same thing before every slam - there is no such thing as a sure thing, nothing is written in stone and nothing can be taken for granted. I have learned that from a lifetime of watching and studying the sport of tennis and especially the grand slam events. You never know what will happen.

Rafa will not be taking anything for granted, that's for sure. I am really happy that he has a fairly easy, straightforward victory against Simon today. After two tough matches, this was a nice break for him. I didn't think that Simon would have enough to trouble Rafa. It's a tough road ahead for him and he knows it.

One match at a time, just like Rafa says!

Nativenewyorker , 9/6/10 5:19 AM

This is the reason why I picked Berdych to beat Murray in the quarters as I couldnt see Rafa playing Murray in the semis to begin with. It all make sense now. Murray just lost earlier than anyone expected or would have had the nerve to predict.

Its sad for him and his fans but if he looks at this loss as Rafa does, than he will learn and only get stronger.

God only knows what will happen tomorrow with the other half, especially if the wind continues.

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 5:30 AM

The draw which looked tougher for Nadal at the start now looks easily tougher for Federer with both Berdych and Murray being knocked off.

Rafa will stroll into the finals. US Open finals between Fed and Rafa looks very likely this year.

atul1985 , 9/6/10 5:51 AM

Absolutely! Fingers crossed that they both get there!

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 6:33 AM

I am so wanting that too to happen. Rafa vs. Roger at the US Open finals.

Raindrops , 9/6/10 6:56 AM


I had forgotten that you picked Berdych to beat Murray in the quarters. So you had the right psychic sense that he wouldn't get to the semis, just didn't see him going out before the quarters or the round of 16! Interesting!

I started to feel that Querrey could take out Murray the way he has been playing. I just felt that Murray had very easy opponents and hadn't faced anyone who could test him. I know that Wawa can be tough, remembering the close matches Rafa has had with him, but just didn't think he could play the kind of tennis to take Murray out. However, as I watched the match I realized that he was playing extremely well and Murray was not looking that good.

I am kind of nervous about Rafa's match with Lopez. He can play on hardcourt and might be some trouble. I was worried about either Nalby or Ferrer in the quarters, and now it's either Ferrer or Verdasco. I am hearing that Ferrer is playing extremely well. I haven't seen any of his matches.

Look at me! I am guilty of the very thing that I said that I would not do - look ahead and not take it one match at a time! I am feeling very good about the way Rafa is playing. I am loving that serve!

Please let me know if you have any other predictions or feeings. You are almost never wrong, and if you are, then you are not far off ! :)

Nativenewyorker , 9/6/10 7:04 AM

NNY, dont be worried about anyone in Rafa's half now.

This is a 5 setter GS match, not some 250 event. Look what Verdasco did at AO09 SF...close to 100 winners, still cudnt cross the finish line against Nadal. Murray was someone who had the belief and talent to beat Nadal. No1 else left in his half can really beat Rafa imo...and def. not in the kind of form that rafa has shown in the Open this year.

Infact it is very much possible that Rafa might reach the finals without dropping a set. that wud be something, given US Open is widely proclaimed as Rafa's worst slam

atul1985 , 9/6/10 7:24 AM


Ferrer can be a pit bull when he plays. Of course, you are right that this is a five setter grand slam match. That gives Rafa the edge. I guess that I am a little too superstitious. I want to be cautious.

I am thrilled with the way Rafa is playing and, if he continues this way then nobody should be able to stop him.

Any thoughts on who he might meet in the finals? The usual suspect? :)

Nativenewyorker , 9/6/10 8:05 AM

Good job it's tennis I love, is all I can say :[

deuce , 9/6/10 8:07 AM

Dont worry about Lopez, yes he has won his matches, but who has he played? He beat Giraldo, then Paire took him to 5 and then he had a retirement. Rafa will just be too strong and i wouldnt count Rafa losing to him at Queens to mean anything.

As for Verdasco and Ferrer, they are going to kill each other. It will be a great match I think, but the winner wont be able to beat Rafa.

I agree totally with atul1985!

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 8:07 AM

NNY- Yes Ferrer is a pitbull, but his winning streak is soon to end, not because of whom he may or may not play but because he goes through ups and down with winning and losing periods, as he does in matches.

Think about it this way NNY, Murray is now out. Do you think Rafa is going to go down easily, not that he would ever, but especially in this tournament and now that the draw has opened up for him....nope! He will run on no knees if he has to, because he knows that this is his opportunity to get into the final and win!

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 8:15 AM

who will you follow now, Djokovic? I'm not quite sure who your second favourite is.

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 8:19 AM

isabeau: Hi! As I said, have lots of players I like and good job! Yes, it's Djkovic and then brilliant if Gasquet suddenly got himself together but that's as likely as snow in NYC. To be honest, and I'm not saying this cos it's you, I think the tournament is now on Rafa's raquet. Moreover, he's been looking better and better as he goes deeper. eg his serve!! Where did that come from??

deuce , 9/6/10 8:30 AM

isabeau: Like Youzny too, another tortured soul who draws blood on court! BTW I agree with your comment on another thread. Andy severely underestimated Stan, he'd just got the first set, was leading 3-1 in second and let him back into the match for chrisakes. He needs to underpromise and over-deliver! Mind you all this media hype is not of his doing and does not help him at all.

deuce , 9/6/10 8:38 AM

Deuce- my favorite players are the battlers, those who never stop fighting and trying and whom even in loss do not complain.
As for the tournament being rafas to lose, I disagree as no matter who is on the other side it's going to be extremely difficult. I mean Roger for one who rules this court is cruising, djokovic is looking good and soderling I looking very strong also.
Fir now like rafa we will just play it one match at a time and if rafa earns his place in the final, may the best man win!

isabeau77 , 9/6/10 9:41 AM

Deuce: Not sure who was the most surprised: Andy to lose or Stan to win. I only saw the lst set and beginning of 2nd before succumbing to much needed sleep. Was shocked to wake up and find Andy was out. I dont know how he managed to get through his post match interview with all those dumb questions - the prize one being "so Andy obviously you were bitterly disappointed to lose, so can you telll us a bit how you felt". I ask you! Anyway, I thought he fielded them pretty well and managed not to lose his temper at being asked the same thing in a dozen different ways but he looked completely shell shocked. Is there any news on who might be his next coach? He needs good help quickly to hep him recover from his annus horribilis.

ed251137 , 9/6/10 9:48 AM

Isa and NNY: Disagree Ferrer is a pit bull: he's much more like a persistant fox terrier. He clings on and shakes his prey whereas the pit bull goes straight for the kill.

ed251137 , 9/6/10 10:07 AM

There is no such thing as a stroll to the final! Rafa must take one match at a time and focus focus focus - as isabeau says - Rafa must keep his head while all around are losing theirs. My take is let Verdasco and Ferrer beat each other up [hopefully :)] but just remember - all these guys are hungry - and every one of them thinks they can win the big one. One game at a time is all.

Blessed , 9/6/10 10:39 AM

There are still some dangerous players left in the draw, apart from Djokovic and Federer, there are others like Fish, Monfils and Gasquet. Fish is a much improved player, Monfils can be a problem, if the right one turns up so we don't know who is going to make the SF from the bottom half of the draw. Rafa must not drop his guard against the spaniards either.

Start by taking everyone seriously.

nadline , 9/6/10 11:12 AM

Rafa will not lose his head or drop his intensity. He is way too experienced now.

Rafa and Fed have a equal chance of winning this tournament. If they meet its 50-50. Fed is also playing very well and has a lot of experience at the GS level, so dont count him out.

Though strange things can happen in tennis, but I am pretty sure that Rafa will reach the finals.

atul1985 , 9/6/10 1:12 PM

ed: he needs a shrink not a coach...:(

deuce , 9/6/10 2:43 PM

One thing i know for one needs to tell Rafa how to win!!


Monalysa , 9/6/10 3:13 PM

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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