Friday 24th August 2012

Berdych finally recorded a win over Steve Darcis yesterday although when Darcis took the first set it looked like he would take his third win over the Czech player.

The favourites all came through although some struggled along the way. Jankovic’s serve was very poor early in her match with Dellacqua but she scraped through. Wozniacki beat Cibulkova 6-2, 6-1 but she traded very high when she looked like a leg injury might force her to retire. As is often the case with her it didn’t seem to affect her and Cibulkova’s game disintegrated totally in the second set.

 

Today Wozniacki takes on Kirilenko in the semi final of the event she has won for the last 4 years. Wozniacki leads the head to heads 5-0 but they haven’t played for over 2 years. Kirilenko has improved a great deal since then and is now ranked 14th in the world which is her highest ever ranking.

Kirilenko has a reputation for choking when in a position to win a set or match. I feel that this reputation is a little out of date as her performances over the last few months have shown a much greater level of consistency.  She has only once taken a set from Wozniacki but today I expect her to take at least one more.

Wozniacki will not give up her New Haven crown easily although we don’t know how much, if at all, her leg injury will affect her. One thing is for certain Kirilenko will not fold like Cibulkova did and if Woz seems to be in difficulty physically then the Russian will be doing all she can to move her opponent around the court.

Kirilenko will be the more attacking player and I think she might just take a very tight 3 setter.

 

Tsonga and Isner have played twice on hard courts. Each player took one of the matches and in both games the winning player won in 3 sets with their sets won in tie breaks.

So this is another tough-to-call match.  Tsonga destroyed a poor Granollers in the last round losing just 3 games. Isner had a tougher quarter final with Goffin and needed a tie break to take the opening set.

Tsonga hasn’t lost a set so far. Isner lost the opening set of the tournament to Martin Klizan.

Both players will fancy their chances  of making it to the second week in New York so its difficult to know if that will play on their minds today.

I give a slight edge to top seed Tsonga as he is a better returner than Isner. Very little between these two top tenners.

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