• Ferrer, Isner kick off U.S. Open campaigns

    8/28/12 7:36 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Ferrer, Isner kick off U.S. Open campaigns David Ferrer and John Isner will contest their first-round matches on Wednesday in Flushing Meadows. They are set for respective meetings with Kevin Anderson and Xavier Malisse.

    Kevin Anderson vs. (4) David Ferrer

    Ferrer and Anderson will be squaring off for the first time in their careers when they do battle in round one of the U.S. Open on Wednesday. This is a huge opportunity for Ferrer, who is the top seed in his quarter thanks to the absence of Rafael Nadal. The fifth-ranked Spaniard is 53-11 for the year, but his hard-court form is suspect at the moment. He did not win a single match during the U.S. Open Series.

    For Anderson, this draw is an insult to injury. The 6'8'' South African has been slumping since Wimbledon and he is on a four-match losing streak dating back to Washington, D.C. Anderson is always dangerous due to his big serve, but a consistent baseliner and world-class returner like Ferrer is a nightmare matchup for the underdog. Ferrer in straight sets is the pick.

    Xavier Malisse vs. (9) John Isner

    Isner is heading into Flushing Meadows just as he did last year, fresh off a title in Winston-Salem. Instead of showing fatigue in 2011, the 6'9'' American parlayed into an appearance in his first Grand Slam quarterfinal. Isner has a good chance to do even more this time, in part because he finds himself in the most wide open section of the draw. The world No. 10 is also in the midst of his best year on tour, with a 41-15 record, two titles, and wins over Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.

    Up first for Isner on Wednesday is a fourth career meeting with Malisse, who leads the head-to-head series 2-1. The Belgian prevailed twice in 2010 before Isner got on the scoreboard earlier this season in Nice. Six of their eight sets have ended in tiebreakers. Malisse is 32 years old, but he owns a decent 20-20 record for his 2012 campaign and he registers at 57th in the world. Look for Isner to get the job done in three competitive sets.

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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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