2013 Australian Open Men’s Draw Analysis

 

What an interesting draw that has been dealt! Social media has been buzzing with who ended in what quarter or half, who got the tough first round matchup, and who could potentially be playing who.

Rather than get caught up in the emotion of it all and start making outlandish comments and statements, a more level-headed approach was decided upon.

This is what I make of each of the quarters:

QUARTER 1

Predicted Quarter Winner: Novak Djokovic ($1.22 at Sportsbet)

Value Picks: Nil

Seeds Involved:

  • Novak Djokovic
  • Radek Stepanek
  • Sam Querrey
  • Stanislas Wawrinka
  • Juan Monaco
  • Fernando Verdasco
  • Jurgen Melzer
  • Tomas Berdych

Head to Head Matrix

Stepanek ND 7:1 RS
Querrey ND 4-1 SQ RS 1:2 SQ
Wawrinka ND 12:2 SW RS 4:0 SW SQ 0:2 SW
Monaco ND 6:0 JM RS 4:2 JM SQ 1:3 JM SW 3:0 JM
Verdasco ND 5:4 FV RS 4:3 FV SQ 3:1 FV SW 1:2 FV JM 6:4 FV
Melzer ND 3:1 JM RS 0:3 JM SQ 2:0 JM SW 2:2 JM JMo 5:1 JM FV 6:2 JM
Berdych ND 11:1 TB RS 1:2 TB SQ 1:4 TB SW 5:4 TB JM 0:7 TB FV 4:10 TB JM 2:2 TB
  Djokovic Stepanek Querrey Wawrinka Monaco Verdasco Melzer

Winners from the Draw

Novak Djokovic – Possibly the biggest winner out of all from the draw. Looking to become the first man to win 3 in a row in the modern era, Djokovic will love that both Roger Federer and Andy Murray are on the other side of the draw. Leads the head to head against all other seeds in the quarter.

Kevin Anderson – The Sydney finalist (and potential winner) has started the year impressively. With a first round matchup vs Paolo Lorenzi, Anderson will then go on to face one of the more vulnerable seeds in Melbourne this year: Juan Monaco. Monaco had to withdraw from the AAMI Classic with a hand injury, so he will be going into the Australian Open with no matches under his belt this year. Anderson has the tools and the form to potentially knock off the 11th seed. From there it will most likely be Verdasco, whom he outplayed in every area in Perth a fortnight ago.

Nobody is generally a winner when you find yourself in the same quarter as Djokovic, but there is every chance Anderson could push his way to a 4th round match vs Berdych, a fine achievement for an unseeded player.

Losers from the Draw

Paul-Henri Mathieu – Draws Novak Djokovic round 1. Poor guy.

Radek Stepanek – Faces a potentially difficult start with Troicki (who can be anything on his day), followed by Feliciano Lopez. If he gets beyond those two, he then faces Djokovic.

Aussies to Watch

At this point, no Aussies are drawn into this quarter. This may change however depending on who qualifies.

Intriguing Round 1 Meeting

We can predict all we want, but this match we know will definitely happen.

Fernando Verdasco vs David Goffin – a very intriguing match. Keep an eye out for our preview on Sunday

Draw Analysis

QUARTER 2

Value Pick for Quarter Winner: Kei Nishikori ($10.50 at Sportsbet) – If he plays to his ability, this could easily happen. The main query is if Nishikori is at 100%, being troubled by knee issues recently. A 3rd round matchup vs Ferrer holds the key, where Nishikori holds a 2-1 h2h advantage.

Seeds Involved:

  • David Ferrer
  • Marcos Baghdatis
  • Mikhail Youzhny
  • Kei Nishikori
  • Nicolas Almagro
  • Jerzy Janowicz
  • Julien Benneteau
  • Janko Tipsaravic

Head to Head Matrix

Baghdatis DF 3:1 MB
Youzhny DF 3:4 MY MB 2:4 MY
Nishikori DF 1:2 KN MB 3:1 KN
Almagro DF 12:0 NA MB 0:1 NA MY 4:0 NA KN 1:0 NA
Janowicz DF 1:0 JJ
Benneteau DF 5:4 JB MB 2:4 JB MY 4:2 JB KN 1:1 JB NA 1:2 JB
Tipsaravic DF 4:1 JT MB 2:2 JT MY 3:3 JT KN 0:5 JT NA 1:0 JT JJ 1:0 JT JB 1:1 JT
  Ferrer Baghdatis Youzhny Nishikori Almagro Janowicz Benneteau

Winners from the Draw

David Ferrer – Ferrer is the winner mainly due to the fact Nadal withdrew a fortnight ago. Considering it took top 4 ranked players to knock him out of the Australian and US Open, he has set himself up well here.

Losers from the Draw

Janko Tipsaravic – Draws Lleyton Hewitt Round One! Not what he would have wanted at all. After a strong performance in the UAE at the end of December, Tipsaravic has cast some doubt over himself, retiring from the AAMI Classic with an elbow injury.

Nicolas Almagro – Only holds a winning head to head record over two of the other seeds (Baghdatis and Tipsaravic). Will want to avoid playing Ferrer, who boasts a 12-0 H2H record lead.

Aussies to Watch

John Millman will start as favourite in his opening round match with Japan’s Tatsuma Ito. Their most recent matchup was in Brisbane, with Millman winning 6-4 6-1. As you may recall, Millman then went on to push Andy Murray to the limit in Brisbane.

Matthew Ebden faces seeded Russian Mikhail Youzhny. You can’t say that either of these players have been in form of late. Youzhny will start this a pretty solid favourite, but you will be betting on a match with two players who have been known to fall in a screaming heap at times.

Lleyton Hewitt – See below

Intriguing Round 1 Meetings

We can predict all we want, but these matches we know will definitely happen.

Lleyton Hewitt vs Janko Tipsaravic – Possibly the highlight of the first round. What a match this shapes up to be. It is just the type of match Hewitt loves. You know it’ll be an absolute grind, and nobody will be surprised if this goes the distance. The silver lining for Hewitt? If he wins this, he takes the number 8 seed’s draw. If Hewitt overcomes the first hurdle, he could see the second week again this year. (EARLY THOUGHTS – This match to go over 3.5 sets at $1.52 looks to be value. Will look into this further in the match preview on Sunday)

Grigor Dimitrov vs Julien Benneteau – Two in form players going at it. Will be great to watch. Will Dimitrov have to tank to beat the experienced Benneateau in best of 5 tennis? The fatigue that hit him vs Almagro this time last year certainly springs to mind.

Draw Analysis

What an interesting draw that has been dealt this morning! Social media was buzzing with who ended in what quarter or half, who got the tough first round matchup, and who could potentially be playing who.

Rather than get caught up in the emotion of it all and start making outlandish comments and statements, a more level-headed approach was decided upon.

This is what I make of each of the quarters:

QUARTER 3

Value Pick for Quarter Winner: Andy Murray ($1.50 at Sportsbet) – Murray has a 36-4 H2H record against the other seeds in his quarter. He shouldn’t be tested until potentially meeting Del Potro in the Quarters, and holds a 7-1 h2h advantage.

Seeds Involved:

  • Juan Martin Del Potro
  • Marcel Granollers
  • Andreas Seppi
  • Marin Cilic
  • Gilles Simon
  • Alexandr Dolgopolov
  • Florian Mayer
  • Andy Murray

Head to Head Matrix

Granollers JD 0:1 MG
Seppi JD 3:1 AS MG 2:2 AS
Cilic JD 7:2 MC MG 1:5 MC AS 4:5 MC
Simon JD 3:2 GS MG 4:1 GS AS 1:4 GS MC 0:3 GS
Dolgopolov JD 3:0 AD MG 2:2 AD AS 0:4 AD MC 1:1 AD GS 1:2 AD
Mayer JD 3:2 FM MG 1:1 FM AS 2:1 FM MC 1:2 FM GS 0:3 FM AD 0:1 FM
Murray JD 1:7 AM MG 0:2 AM AS 1:4 AM MC 1:8 AM GS 1:9 AM AD 0:4 AM FM 0:2 AM
  Del Potro Granollers Seppi Cilic Simon Dolgopolov Mayer

Winners from the Draw

Andy Murray – Murray was always going to have to beat both Federer and Djokovic you’d think to win the title, so nothing new from the draw there. Taking a look at his predicted pathway through his quarter, and you will see a pretty easy run for Murray. He is due to face Robin Haase round 1, and should account for him easily (even considering their US Open 5 setter a few years back).

Losers from the Draw

Alexandr Dolgopolov – Drew one of the toughest unseeded players round 1 – Gael Monfils. You work hard to gain a seeding and a solid draw, and to get Monfils round one is not a good result.

Aussies to Watch

Marinko Matosevic – Marinko has snagged a seeded player straight up: Marin Cilic. A very very tough match for Marinko, but a possible Hisense Arena appearance and a big Aussie crowd may help him (a little).

John-Patrick Smith – Drawn Joao Sousa Round 1, a potentially winnable match. If he makes the 2nd round? Andy Murray. Ouch.

Intriguing Round 1 Meeting

Alexandr Dolgopolov vs Gael Monfils – Set to be an absolutely cracking match on Tuesday. Two of the most entertaining players to watch going at it best of 5. Doesn’t get much better in the first round of a Grand Slam.

QUARTER 4

Value Pick for Quarter Winner: Nil

Seeds Involved:

  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
  • Thomaz Bellucci
  • Tommy Haas
  • Richard Gasquet
  • Milos Raonic
  • Philipp Kohlschreiber
  • Martin Klizan
  • Roger Federer

Head to Head Matrix

Bellucci JT 2:0 TB
Haas JT 2:2 TH TB 1:0 TH
Gasquet JT 3:4 RG TB 0:3 RG TH 2:2 RG
Raonic JT 1:0 MR RG 0:1 MR
Kohlsch. JT 6:1 PK TB 2:2 PK TH 2:2 PK RG 2:1 PK
Klizan JT 0:1 MK TB 1:1 MK TH 1:0 MK
Federer JT 3:8 RF TB 0:2 RF TH 4:10 RF RG 2:10 RF MR 0:3 RF PK 0:7 RF
  Tsonga Bellucci Haas Gasquet Raonic Kohlsch. Klizan

Winners from the Draw

Nil

Losers from the Draw

Roger Federer –  Not only does he end up having Andy Murray in his half, but Federer has one of the toughest runs for a top 4 seed I have seen in some time. If he wins here in Melbourne, it could go down as his best Grand Slam win of all time. To win, he is projected to have to go through Benoit Paire (Chennai Semi Finallist), Nikolay Davydenko (Doha Finallist), Bernard Tomic, Milos Raonic, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic. Tough tough tough.

Aussies to Watch

James Duckworth – One of the next wave of Australians we hope can take the next step this year. Was incredibly impressed with how he played against Denis Istomin in Sydney in extreme heat. He showed something. All he needed was a bit more composure in key parts of the match and he would have knocked him out.

Keep an eye of Duckworth for the Top Aussie markets. Many (not necessarily I) think Tipsaravic will account for Hewitt round 1, Tomic will need a miracle to get beyond Rd 3 (Federer), meaning a round 3 result is needed for a half-odds result. If he beats Ben Mitchell Round 1 (favourite), Duckworth will seriously push Thomaz Bellucci round 2 with a home court advantage. Something to consider.

Bernard Tomic – Australian Open organisers will be hoping Tomic cruises past Leo Mayer and most-likely 2nd round opponent Martin Klizan. Heineken Day, their biggest, would be boosted by Federer vs Tomic on Rod Laver Arena on a Saturday night. Let’s see how Bernie goes.

Benjamin Mitchell – Another young upcoming player of the future. Mitchell has been drawn to play James Duckworth Round 1. At least one Australian will make it to the second round!

Luke Saville – The Junior Wimbledon champ in 2011 meets Go Soeda in the first round, who played solid tennis in Chennai before being absolutely wiped off the court by Giraldo in Auckland.

Intriguing Round 1 Meetings

Tommy Haas vs Jarkko Nieminen – Two of the veterans of the tour. Both playing solid tennis (Haas in Auckland, Nieminen in Sydney), this will be interesting to watch!

By David Brewster [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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Ace

I've had a passion for Tennis since I was young and haven't missed a Grand Slam ever since I can remember. I'm always happy to talk Tennis on twitter and respond to any queries so feel free to tweet me your questions.

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