Indian Wells: Draw Analysis

The ceremony for the IW draw took place on Tuesday.  DelPo has a very tough path at the first Masters of the year:

R1 BYE – R2 Davydenko/Mathieu – R3 Chardy – R4 Almagro/Haas – QF Murray – SF Djokovic – F Fed/Nadal

DelPo’s had tough luck with the draws this year: In his past three tournaments (at Rotterdam, Marseille and Dubai), DelPo’s opening round opponents were Monfils, Llodra and Baghdatis.  At IW, DelPo will likely start his tournament by playing Davydenko, against whom he has a losing record (2-3).  However, DelPo won their last match, when Davydenko retired after losing the 2nd set in Marseille last year.  Strangely enough, this would be the first time DelPo and Davydenko meet on outdoor HCs (all of their previous encounters were on indoor HCs and clay).  Still, Davydenko will need to beat Mathieu first (Mathieu won his last match against Davydenko at Basel last year).

If DelPo gets past his tough opening match against Davydenko/Mathieu, he will then likely have a rematch with Chardy, the destroyer of his dreams at the AO.  He will want to seek his revenge, but Chardy will also be anxious to rebound from a disappointing showing in South America.  DelPo, Chardy and Muzz seem to end up in the same section of the draw quite often.  This is an unholy grouping.  Muzz will be in good form, after taking a long break following the AO.  He will probably want to cover lost ground, after losing to GGL in his opening match last year.

The hope is that DelPo’s wrist will be in healthy condition, so that he can make a deep run at IW.  Fans will be anxious to see DelPo-Muzz QF, since the two haven’t played each other since the 2009 WTF.  Last year, DelPo reached the QF after gutting out a 3-set win over Istomin — he then lost in straight sets to Fed, after getting upset with Hawk-Eye.

Rafa makes his comeback to HCs.  The 5th seed ended up in Fed’s quarter of the draw.  My guess is Rafa will cruise to the QFs.  He may face a test from Tipsy, but Tipsy seems to be going through a rough patch these days.  Fed will face an early test against Benny and Wawrinka/Isner.

[tweet https://twitter.com/EnriqueNoticias/status/309540320499085312 align=’center’]

Berdy and Ferru have cakewalk draws.  It’s strange how the players ranked just above DelPo always seem to have the easiest draws.  Last year, it was Tipsy.  This year, it’s Berdy.  That’s the way it goes, I suppose!

***

While Rafa made his way to IW, I’ve yet to hear of any DelPo sightings at the tournament.  DelPo’s name has not appeared in any of the practice schedules so far.

Tennis fans should check out 12kgp’s YouTube channel.  There are some great practice sessions uploaded there (including Kei-Goffin, Gasquet-Jo, Tomic-Hewitt and Nalbandian)

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About mariposaxprs

I play favorites with Juan Martin Del Potro, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, David Ferrer, Feliciano Lopez, Gilles Simon and the long line of mercurial talent that drives me to despair in front of the screen at odd hours during the week.
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10 Responses to Indian Wells: Draw Analysis

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Thanks for the link to that article! It was an interesting read on DelPo’s mystery guest!

      I loved that tidbit Marcos shared about the future queen of the Netherlands (who’s Argentinean by birth) wanting to meet DelPo! That would be similar to Argentina’s president Cristina Kirchner being a total cougar with Federer during his visit to Argentina! 🙂 I hope Queen Maxima-DelPo meeting happens next year.

      I liked how Marcos gave a long interview about life-on-tour with Juan. I think a certain amount of credit goes to DelPo’s new press chief for that! 😉 Marcos seemed very knowledgable about tennis and he was smart in his answers about DelPo’s goals for the future. I wonder if he’ll be there for Wimbledon (he seems to be a lucky-enough charm for DelPo, so why not?)

      • audiesgirl@aol.com says:

        I could see not all the players were thrilled to be there, was is Tsonga who said he’d be leaving in 5 minutes? Murry’s green carpet interview was a prize, he can be such a doofus. Why does Tipsy always look like a scared rabbit?
        I guess I was thrown off guard by Marcos’ characterization of their relationship as “intima y fluida” – what does that mean? What’s this guy do for a living that he can traipse around with Delpo so often? He’s part of the huge posse Juan tends to run with back home, remember he was hanging out with them at his birthday party and when he was resting his wrist last Fall. After Stephie went home, another bud appears at the WTF. Why am I troubled that the only public pictures with friends seem to be with guys? Maybe it’s an Argie thing.
        So far the only surprise at IW is Ferrer’s upset by Anderson, didn’t see that coming. The American’s aren’t doing so well with Isner and Harrison out but I was glad to see Hewitt win. Am lighting candles to the Patron Saint of Argie Tenistas for Delpo’s match today, he’s going to need all the help he can get.
        BTW, how do I share pictures here?

        • mariposaxprs says:

          I took “intima y fluida” to mean that they were close and that their friendship had been consistent throughout the years. Kind of like the friends you don’t see for over a year, yet you pick up right where you left off when you next meet them. Many of his friends from the “annual birthday photos” showed up to Wimbledon and to DC. I know it’s different in America, where ppl fly across the country for college, but in Europe/Asia cultures, it’s quite common for people to stay in one city for most of their adult lives — the closest friends are usually the ones you went to grade school/high school with. I don’t know what it’s like in Argentina, but it seems like that for DelPo.

          Ferru has had a bit of a rough start to 2013 and for some reason, he’s never played well at IW (it might be the desert air) — it would’ve been quite nice if DelPo ended up in his quarter, but oh well! 🙂 Tipsy’s another one who’s been having a bad start to the year, as well as Pico — Pico got blitzkrieg-ed by Matosevic (the guy who told DelPo he wanted him to win IW last yr) at IW — he’s defending SF points at Miami too, so let’s hope he gets up and going.

          I’m a bit late w/my post, but I’ll put up a DelPo-Davydenko match review shortly. I’m glad he got thru that one with minimal fuss, although it wasn’t nearly as straightforward as the scoreline suggests.

  1. audiesgirl@aol.com says:

    Well, Delpo was spotted practicing as early as Wednesday and did an ESPN Deportes interview on Thursday so his skipping the players party appears to be deliberate; maybe he didn’t have any better clothes than the ones he wore at the MSG festivities? Who can blame him for not wanting to socialize with Pico and Nalby right now? Still, he could have appeared with Rafa, Roger and Djoko at the groundbreaking for the new stadium; despite having a press agent, he remains tone deaf to the PR aspects of the game. Rafa’s staying with the tournament’s owner, maybe he’s holed up there now that they’re such buds.
    It will be terrible if Nalby advances and Delpo washes out early which might happen as he goes up against Davy and perhaps Chardy. I was hoping the Argies would all get drunk together and put their differences behind them for the sake of nationalism and sportsmanship.
    It’s one busy week ahead, got to nap between the sessions.

    • mariposaxprs says:

      I don’t think DelPo went to the player’s party last year either. I guess he’s one of the “less social” players? In an imaginary world where I was a tennis plyr, I’d probably only attend the player parties I was forced to attend (b/c of a contract or b/c my agent forced me to) 🙂 For the groundbreaking ceremony, the organizers only invited past champions (hence, Federer, Novak, Rafa, Azarenka and Ivanovic). So DelPo should focus on how he can win IW first!

      I saw Nalby’s loss to Janowicz 😦 He was playing well for stretches, but his fitness is still a problem. Even worse, he’ll fall outside of the top 100 now (he was defending QF points from last yr). Let’s hope DelPo can at least defend his QF points! Davydenko will be a TOUGH test.

      As for the Argies ironing out their differences, I don’t see that ever happening. For what it’s worth, I think Pico likes to keep himself out of the fray, as does Berlocq. I think both Pico and Berlocq are more practical-minded and they know that no good will come from burning their bridges with either DelPo or Nalby. Given DelPo’s wrist concerns right now, I sadly don’t see a chance of him considering DC this year. Ah well. The only thing he can do now is make sure his decision to focus on his individual career pays off. Ultimately, that will benefit everyone who’s related to him by nationality. So that is the goal!

      I hope the tennis is not interfering with your sleep too much!! Vamos for DelPo tomorrow.

  2. audiesgirl@aol.com says:

    I’ve been wondering, too, where Delpo’s been since Monday night. Maybe he stopped by Dr. Berger’s at the Mayo Clinic for a wrist check up? A certain ex novia is has been working on a modeling gig in Miami and has tweeted some pretty sexy videos/pix in the past couple of days. The romantic in me just won’t give up hoping. Well, Delpo did say two years ago that he’d retire in a couple of years and go home to Tandil and start a family; do I hear the patter of little feet next year. Sighs……

    Yes, he has a very tough draw but needs the challenge to get his head in the game. Many have noted that he’s no longer speaking of numbero uno, perhaps he’s concluded that’s just not gonna happen unless Djoko and Murray get abducted by space aliens.

    Rafa’s back but nowhere near the form needed to take the big ones. One sportswriter noted he could make a darn good living playing just the clay tournos and the occasional major, better than ending up a gimpy old man.

    • mariposaxprs says:

      So many tennis fans go to IW and they’re up-to-date on the whereabouts of tennis players. I’m a bit worried no one has yet reported seeing DelPo on the grounds. Maybe he did make a detour to visit Dr. Berger…I’m not sure if that’s cause for concern yet, although it is starting to sound very pesky. Is Stephie in Miami? *sigh* I’m blaming her if DelPo loses early there! Although I like that you still ship them 🙂 By the way, are you attending the Miami Masters this year?

      I’m worried that DelPo’s left wrist problem will unduly affect his game at IW. At a minimum, he needs to defend those QF points. Tsonga’s closing in on him and Berdy’s giving off a strangely confident vibe. I feel like everytime DelPo and Muzz end up in the same section of the draw, one of them always ends up losing early. I hope it’s Muzz!! People say Novak and Muzz are going to make it impossible for DelPo to succeed, but I think those ppl also overlook Novak/Muzz’s tendency to have severe off days. Plus, DelPo’s the only player of the Ferru-Berdy-Tsonga bunch to have beaten Novak last year. In that sense, DelPo’s primed to pull off an upset, if given the chance. Whether he can do so at a Slam is the challenge. Also a big question mark is how he’ll fare against the so-called “new” Muzz. I still have no idea what to think about Rafa on HCs. I think Rafa’s sandbagging. He played well enough at the exho and I think he’ll always be a tough out on HCs (even as he complains about the surface).

      • audiesgirl@aol.com says:

        Perhaps he’s off practicing somewhere private now that Pico and Nalby are both at IW. Muzz has a place near Miami, maybe their spending buddy time together? After the latest DC dust up, I’m sure he’s not looking forward to running into them. It would be especially awkward for Pico who’s walking a fine line between his old Tandilense buddy and his DC team captain.
        I am thinking of maybe doing a couple of early days in Miami before it gets completely crazy down there with all the Sudacas (is that a pejorative term?) partying 24/7. If I could figure out which Publix supermarket he visited last year, I’d stake that out and hope to get invited to dinner, etc. LOL.
        Delpo can’t advance just by hoping the top 6 mess up, he’s got to take the ranking. He’s got to want it more than anything. The wrist may be the deal breaker, he can’t play at the level required if he’s worrying about it.
        There was a nice photo spread in the UK Daily Mail online of Rafa and Xisca canoodling in Acapulco during that tournament, they certainly do heat up the beach. There’s nothing like a good woman to keep a guy happy, isn’t Delpo the only soltero in the top 10 besides Tsonga? Now THERE’s a prize pair for some lucky lady!!!

        • mariposaxprs says:

          Have no fear, DelPo has finally showed up at Indian Wells! He was seen practicing next to one Ms. Ana Ivanovic. At one point, they chatted to each other lol. He was there with Franco, Martiniano and Ugo. Based on Twitter, he and his team were in a cheerful mood.

          That would be amazing if you got to see the tennis in Miami! It’s probably more fun to watch in the earlier stages of the tournament, since you have your pick of options as to which players/matches you watch. I hope you get to go this year, and I hope his supermarket visits become an annual tradition for him 🙂 That would be nice!

          DelPo will have to play consistently, while also making the push to challenge the top players. While Muzz earned his USO title last year, I think it’s fair to say that he may also have benefited greatly from Rafa’s absence on his side of the draw. That doesn’t take away from Muzz’s Slam win, but it does show that with the right preparation, a player can seize the chances he’s given. I hope DelPo’s able to press on with his progress, as he’s done so well since 2011.

          I think DelPo and Tsonga may be the only solteros of the bunch. As for Rafa’s Acapulco photos, I heard he invested over $10M in a Mexican hotel resort — so those photos with his girlfriend may’ve been a staged paparazzi shout-out for the hotel 😉

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