Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Ken Won » Sat, 13 Jan 1996 04:00:00


From what I saw on the draw, the toughest quarter is the 2nd one.
Let's see... If Becker is to win the Open, he probably will face
Larsson in the 3rd round, beat Rosset in the 4th round, Kafelinkov
in the quarterfinal, Sampras/Enqvist/Ivanisevic in the semi, and
then Agassi in the final.

The top quarter is also loaded with great players like Sampras,
Enqvist and Ivanisevic. So if Sampras wins, he will have to beat
Enqvist and Ivanisevic on the road.

The weakness quarter is 3rd quarter, with Chang being the favorite
to emerge out there. Krajicek and Medvedev are not in good form,
and Muster is not super on rebound-ace.

Agassi's draw is easier than Sampras', but not by much. He has to
beat Martin (who is playing well) in the 4th round, and then
Ferreira/Courier in the quarter. If he gets past that, he should
be able to cruise to final.

I still don't have the time to look at the women's draw yet...

Ken.

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Byron P. Mccr » Sat, 13 Jan 1996 04:00:00

WOW!    The men's draw is FANTASTIC--there will be lots of e***ment this
year at the Australian Open, I think.  Some of the seeds could be leaving as
early as the 1st or 2nd round, and some of the underdog favorites may also
find themselves in snags.      

The men's draw definetly requires much thought and consideration before
making any picks--NO ONE, not even Agassi or Sampras, is just going to cruise
through this draw.              

The women's draw is a lot harder to digest.  Rubin's 1 and 0 loss this
morning to Date does not bode well for her chances in Oz.  Hopefully, we'll
see a Seles/ASV match-up--the women's draw does look like most of the women's
seeds will hold for quarterfinal match-ups, with a few exceptions.

I got the draws from Pathfinder's SportsAccess Sportsticker.  I'm sure that
Chris will post the complete draw later.  If not, I'll see if I can't post
it later myself.                

--Byron

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by shun.cheu » Sat, 13 Jan 1996 04:00:00



Quote:
>WOW!        The men's draw is FANTASTIC--there will be lots of e***ment this
>year at the Australian Open, I think.  Some of the seeds could be leaving as
>early as the 1st or 2nd round, and some of the underdog favorites may also
>find themselves in snags.  

>The men's draw definetly requires much thought and consideration before
>making any picks--NO ONE, not even Agassi or Sampras, is just going to cruise
>through this draw.          

Well, Byron's statement is always true in any GS event. There is
a lot of depth in men's tennis today, and there is usually quite
a few upsets in the early rounds. However, if I look further ahead
in the draw, I think this time Sampras has an easier draw than Agassi.

Several news sources suggest that Sampras has a tough 1R draw against
Fromberg, which I don't quite understand. Unless Sampras is still
really ill, IMO he should beat Fromberg without too much trouble.
Another possible problem for Sampras is a potential 3R match against
Philippoussis, but I also expect Sampras to get through that one
should they meet.

Other seeds in the top half include Becker (4), Kafelnikov (6), Enqvist (7)
and Ivanisevic (10). Last year I called Becker a wasted seed; I still
don't expect him to get very far at the AO. Melbourne is too hot and
Rebound Ace is too slow for Becker nowadays. Ivanisevic is probably
working too hard in the warm-up events again. We'll see what Kafelnikov
and Enqvist will show.

Agassi should have an easier time early on, but Todd Martin is supposed
to be his 4R opponent. And then he might bump into Courier in the QF;
recall that Courier has beaten Agassi 6 times in a row, including once
in 1995. Moreover, Chang could be his SF opponent. Another high seed
in the bottom half is Muster (3), but I doubt that he can reach his
expected slot in the SF.

Well, I suppose I am looking way too far ahead already. After all
the upsets, we'll re-visit this topic at the end of the first week.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Australian Open Web Page:
  http://SportToday.org/~jsimmons/ozopen.html

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Australian Open TV Schedule in the US:
  No coverage during the first week
  All time zones US Eastern Standard Time

  Sunday,    January 21   9:00pm  to 11:00pm  EST    ESPN2
  Monday,    January 22   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Monday,    January 22  11:30pm  to  1:30am  EST    ESPN2
  Tuesday,   January 23   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Tuesday,   January 23  11:00pm  to  1:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Wednesday, January 24   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Wednesday, January 24  11:00pm  to  1:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Thursday,  January 25   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Friday,    January 26   0:00am  to  2:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Friday,    January 26   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Friday,    January 26   9:30pm  to 11:30pm  EST   ESPN (women's final)
  Saturday,  January 27  10:00pm  to  1:00am  EST   ESPN (men's final)

Please verify this schedule with your local listing and/or ESPN's
official schedule announcement.

--

     snail: 480 Red Hill Road, Middletown, New Jersey  07748  USA

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Srinivasamurthy Kasibhot » Sat, 13 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Quote:

>a few upsets in the early rounds. However, if I look further ahead
>in the draw, I think this time Sampras has an easier draw than Agassi.
>Several news sources suggest that Sampras has a tough 1R draw against
>Fromberg, which I don't quite understand. Unless Sampras is still
>really ill, IMO he should beat Fromberg without too much trouble.
>Another possible problem for Sampras is a potential 3R match against
>Philippoussis, but I also expect Sampras to get through that one
>should they meet.

        I agree that Fromberg should not be a problem for Sampras,
        if Sampras is upto his norm. I have n't heard much about
        Fromberg recently, and if I remember right, he did well
        mostly on clay. As for Philippoussis, he probably has n't
        played well of late, but with a guy who hits like that, (if he
        suddenly finds his touch), Sampras could be in trouble.

Quote:
>Other seeds in the top half include Becker (4), Kafelnikov (6), Enqvist (7)
>and Ivanisevic (10). Last year I called Becker a wasted seed; I still
>don't expect him to get very far at the AO. Melbourne is too hot and
>Rebound Ace is too slow for Becker nowadays. Ivanisevic is probably
>working too hard in the warm-up events again. We'll see what Kafelnikov
>and Enqvist will show.

        Courier is a tough draw for Agassi only because he matches
        up well with Agassi. If Courier were in Sampras' draw,
        it would be an even easier draw for Sampras, considering
        how well Sampras has done against Courier over the years.

        Also, I think big servers give Sampras more trouble than
        baseliners, and from that point of view Ivanisevic, Becker
        are tougher draws than Courier, Chang, and Muster. Particularly
        Muster.

                -Vasu

Quote:
>Agassi should have an easier time early on, but Todd Martin is supposed
>to be his 4R opponent. And then he might bump into Courier in the QF;
>recall that Courier has beaten Agassi 6 times in a row, including once
>in 1995. Moreover, Chang could be his SF opponent. Another high seed
>in the bottom half is Muster (3), but I doubt that he can reach his
>expected slot in the SF.

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Kwansik K » Sun, 14 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Quote:

>   Several news sources suggest that Sampras has a tough 1R draw against
>   Fromberg, which I don't quite understand. Unless Sampras is still
>   really ill, IMO he should beat Fromberg without too much trouble.
>   Another possible problem for Sampras is a potential 3R match against
>   Philippoussis, but I also expect Sampras to get through that one
>   should they meet.

Unless Philippoussis is playing out of his mind.
Kafelnikov gave Sampras a tough match when they met first time(?) in AO.
Now it looks like Kafelnikov won't have a chance to beat him
in the near future, on most surfaces.  Philippoussis seems to
be a bit different from Kafelikov since he is a complete player
but I guess Philippoussis needs to mature more to stand up
with big names.

Quote:
>   Agassi should have an easier time early on, but Todd Martin is supposed
>   to be his 4R opponent. And then he might bump into Courier in the QF;
>   recall that Courier has beaten Agassi 6 times in a row, including once
>   in 1995. Moreover, Chang could be his SF opponent. Another high seed
>   in the bottom half is Muster (3), but I doubt that he can reach his
>   expected slot in the SF.

It will be a true test for Agassi. Genearlly baseliners give
more troubles to Agassi. It is not likely that he pass quarterfinal
if Courier makes it to quarter. If Chang makes semi and meet Courier,
my money on Chang in the final. Muster is the real hurdle for Chang
to make teh final assuming Agassi do not make semi.

Kwansik

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Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Wendy Grossma » Sun, 14 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Quote:

> I still don't have the time to look at the women's draw yet...

> Ken.

Well, I do.  I just don't have time to look at the men's.  :)  So here
are some thoughts on the women:

With Graf missing, seems to me Seles has a terrific chance of remaining
unbeaten in Australia.  I would, however, expect her to meet Sanchez or
Fernandez in the semis.  Although neither has played all that well lately
(Fernandez had a lot of injuries, and Sanchez's play has fallen off the
pinnacle it reached at last year's Wimbledon final), either could be a
good matchup, since Sanchez will be fresh, and MJF has often played well
in Australia (two finals, at least one sf, in which she had match point
against Seles).  Zvereva could be an interesting quarterfinal match,
though, if she gets that far, and we've never yet seen Seles play Majoli,
which could also be fun.  It would nice if Rubin could get past Sabatini
and start beating top-ten players, though.

Bottom half:  Date vs. Hingis could make an intriguing 3rd round (I don't
think Hingis will get past Date, or, if she does, Schultz, or, if she
does, definitely not Pierce), and I'd love to see Coetzer playing Pierce
in the 4th -- scramble vs clobber.  I'd expect Huber to get past anyone
in her eighth of the draw except, with apologies to Amy Frazier, possibly
Helena Sukova, who also has a good record in Australia (two finals, at
least two sfs, I think), although she's "aging" in tennis terms.  Bottom
quarter...Davenport, G Fernandez, Martinez -- Martinez should come
through, I think.  So I guess my picks for the semis are Seles, Sanchez
(or MJF, possibly), Pierce, and Martinez.

Wouldn't a Seles/Pierce final be fun?  They've never played each other.

wg

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by shun.cheu » Sun, 14 Jan 1996 04:00:00


Quote:


>    Courier is a tough draw for Agassi only because he matches
>    up well with Agassi. If Courier were in Sampras' draw,
>    it would be an even easier draw for Sampras, considering
>    how well Sampras has done against Courier over the years.

Yes, Sampras has pretty much dominated Courier over the years, but
a lot of the matches are tough. Courier usually plays well at the
beginning of the year. Recall that Courier had a 2-sets-to-0 lead
over Sampras in the QF last year (although Tim Gullikson was
seriously ill at that time and that clearly affected Sampras in
the match).

Anyway, I expect US players such as Chang and Courier will do well
at the AO, just like last year. Recall that Sampras had to fight off
Courier in the QF and Chang in the SF. By the time Sampras got to
the final, he was very very worn out. This year, POTENTIALLY, it is
Agassi who has to play Courier in the QF and Chang in the SF.

Again, it is way to early for me to make these statements at this
point. All of these are merely potential match ups.

Quote:
>    Also, I think big servers give Sampras more trouble than
>    baseliners, and from that point of view Ivanisevic, Becker
>    are tougher draws than Courier, Chang, and Muster. Particularly
>    Muster.

The big servers might give Sampras a lot of trouble on fast surfaces,
but not on Rebound Ace. Keep in mind that Sampras has beaten Ivanisevic
four times in a row now. Moreover, IMO, it is unlikely that Becker and
Ivanisevic will advance far enough to meet Sampras. In particular,
Becker has a pretty difficult draw early on.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Australian Open Web Page:
  http://netspace.net.au/~jsimmons/ozopen.html

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Australian Open TV Schedule in the US:
  No coverage during the first week
  All time zones US Eastern Standard Time

  Sunday,    January 21   9:00pm  to 11:00pm  EST    ESPN2
  Monday,    January 22   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Monday,    January 22  11:30pm  to  1:30am  EST    ESPN2
  Tuesday,   January 23   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Tuesday,   January 23  11:00pm  to  1:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Wednesday, January 24   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Wednesday, January 24  11:00pm  to  1:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Thursday,  January 25   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Friday,    January 26   0:00am  to  2:00am  EST    ESPN2
  Friday,    January 26   1:00pm  to  3:00pm  EST   ESPN
  Friday,    January 26   9:30pm  to 11:30pm  EST   ESPN (women's final)
  Saturday,  January 27  10:00pm  to  1:00am  EST   ESPN (men's final)

Please verify this schedule with your local listing and/or ESPN's
official schedule announcement.

--

     snail: 480 Red Hill Road, Middletown, New Jersey  07748  USA

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Sunda » Sun, 14 Jan 1996 04:00:00

There seems to be a general consensus that Pete Sampras
is unbeatable in grand slams (ok, except clay :-) ), and
it will be an easy task for him to take this Aus open!
There also seems to be a general consensus that Andre will
bow out before the Quarter Finals :-) :-)

  I, for one, find it very hard to believe why there are
so many negative postings about Andre Agassi, and why there
is so much pessimism on Andre Agassi!! He is one guy, who
has defeated Sampras more times than other players, and one,
who last defeated Sampras in Aussie Open. As always, I am gonna
camp with Agassi for this open too, and I hope he makes full
use of Gilbert's counsel to repeat his great last year's
performance!!  

   Go Agassi!!!!!!!!

 - Sundar

 PS 1: I don't think Todd Martin poses big problem for Andre.
       I think Agassi leads him in their head-to-head record.
       I saw him playing a finals with Goran last month, and
       he choked big-time in the last set. Basically, it should
       not be a problem for Agassi to reach the QF.

 PS 2: This guy, "Terminator" Courier can stop Agassi, of course.
       I've read like he's beaten Agassi 6-times in a row!!!!!!!
       For a guy like Agassi, who needs to be really focussed to
       win a match, if he takes a defeatist attitude in QF, he may
       easily get killed by the Terminator! I hope, for Agassi's
       sake, either of the following to happen.
                a) Courier does not make it to the QF         :)
                b) Agassi gets some ugly tactics from Gilbert :)
                c) Sampras bows out in the early rounds       :)
                d) Brooke Shields does not attend Aussie Open :)

  PS 3: Shun and others seem to think that Pete is unbeatable; well,
        they're in for a surprise this time!!!!!!!!!

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Nemanja Dundjerov » Mon, 15 Jan 1996 04:00:00

With Graf missing, seems to me Seles has a terrific chance of remaining >
unbeaten in Australia.  I would, however, expect her to meet Sanchez or >
Fernandez in the semis.  Although neither has played all that well lately

Quote:
> (Fernandez had a lot of injuries, and Sanchez's play has fallen off the
> pinnacle it reached at last year's Wimbledon final), either could be a >

good matchup, since Sanchez will be fresh, and MJF has often played well >
in Australia (two finals, at least one sf, in which she had match point >
against Seles).  Zvereva could be an interesting quarterfinal match, >
though, if she gets that far, and we've never yet seen Seles play Majoli,
Quote:
> which could also be fun.  It would nice if Rubin could get past Sabatini
> and start beating top-ten players, though. > > Bottom half:  Date vs.

Hingis could make an intriguing 3rd round (I don't > think Hingis will get
past Date, or, if she does, Schultz, or, if she > does, definitely not
Pierce), and I'd love to see Coetzer playing Pierce > in the 4th --
scramble vs clobber.  I'd expect Huber to get past anyone > in her eighth
of the draw except, with apologies to Amy Frazier, possibly > Helena
Sukova, who also has a good record in Australia (two finals, at > least
two sfs, I think), although she's "aging" in tennis terms.  Bottom >
quarter...Davenport, G Fernandez, Martinez -- Martinez should come >
through, I think.  So I guess my picks for the semis are Seles, Sanchez >
(or MJF, possibly), Pierce, and Martinez. > > Wouldn't a Seles/Pierce
final be fun?  They've never played each other. > > wg

Seles should have no problems reaching the SF, despite the fact that bot
MJF and Sanchez-Vicario are potentially dangerous. Fernandez, however, has a
Seles complex, and she doesn't seem to be able to stand up to her, and the
form of S-V is questionable.  However, Pierce, Huber and Coetzer should be
the competitors in the bottom half, and whoever makes it to the finals will be
a worthy competitor to Monica. Just a note: forget about Hingis.  She
ain't gonna make it past Date in 3R.

Whereas the men are concerned, I don't think Sampras will make it very
far.  Ivanisevic, Enqvist and Philippoussis are all situated in his
quarter of the draw.  The way I see it, it will be Ivanisevic, Chang,
Courier and Kafelnikov in the semis, with Ivanisevic and Courier going to
the finals and Ivanisevic winning his first GS title.

--
Nemanja Dundjerovic            To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by James Ballou Bohli » Mon, 15 Jan 1996 04:00:00

: Well....

: Majoli will probably meet McNeil in the 2R, and I think she is in real danger
: of dropping out then. In the 3R, McNeil will face De Swardt, who
: played rather well in Sydney. Anyway I think McNeil is in such a good form
: that she will overcome her, and after seeing the results of Seles in Sydney, I
: really doubt that she is strong enough to last a GS-tournament. In other
: words, I think McNeil will defeat Seles in the QF, she is one of the _few_
: players who has the mentally strength to beat top players like Graf and Seles.
: => McNeil in the semis!

Wow!  This is a pretty big prediction!  As much as I respect Lori and
enjoy her style of play, I would say her chances of even getting a set
against Monica are incredibly low.  Plus, she would have to
potentially get past Majoli, De Swardt, and Zvereva before reaching Seles.
Lori has a very good record against Steffi Graf, beating her twice and
taking her to three sets in just about every other match they've played.  
However, all S&V players have an advantage over Graf that they don't have
against Seles:  go for the backhand.  Martina even pointed that out as
the toughest thing about playing Monica:  there is no favored side to
attack.  She will blast cannons off either wing with equal power.  
I saw one portion of a Seles/McNeil match (on clay, admittedly Monica's
best and Lori's worst surface), and Lori had to fight like hell to even
keep points going.  Monica was so obviously not bothered that she even
served and volleyed just to change things up.  Final score:  Seles d.
McNeil 6-1, 6-0.  I imagine Lori would give her a tougher match on
hardcourts, but I can't foresee her beating Monica.

: I also think that MJ Fernandez will reach the semis after defeating ASV in the
: 4R. In the QF she'll probably meet Rubin, McGrath or possibly Kruger. I don't
: think Sabatini will get very far in the AO, she _can_ reach the 4R, but that's
: it.

I cannot make any prediction about Gabriela.  She could just as easily
win the tournament as lose in the first round.

: Unlike a lot of other people, I think Date can get in truble already in the
: 1R, against Gavaldon. She played great here last year, and I think she can
: shake Date a lot. I also think that Hingis will reach the 4R, after defeating
: Gavaldon/Date in the 3R, but will lose to Schultz. Schultz will have a very
: interesting Qf against either Coetzer or Raymond (who defeats Pierce in the
: 3R), and my guess is that Schultz, too, will reach the semis.

I agree that Brenda is in great form, and could have a very interesting
match against Pierce (although with very few long rallies; everything
would depend on Brenda's serve/Mary's steadiness)

: That leaves one more spot - which will go to  Anke Huber. She'll defeat an
: exhausted Davenport in the QF, and posibly Sukova in the 4R. Sukova played
: great here earlier, and I think she can do it again.

If Huber gets past Davenport, her chances of making the finals are
excellent.  She has a great record over both Pierce and Martinez, the two
top seeds in her half.  Will Lindsay be tired or inspired?  We shall soon
see.

: We have the two semifinals

: McNeil  - MJ Fernandez
: Schultz - Huber

: and a final between McNeil and Schultz, which eventually McNeil will win...

: My thoughts. I don't think everything will come true, but hope that _some_of
: it will....

: Jacob

A Schultz-McNeil final.  Can you imagine a GS final between two
serve-and-volleyers on the *women's* side?!?!?   Wow!  And then of course
a meteor could crash on Flinder's Park at match point.  Seriously, when
is the last time we had two SVers in the women's final?  Navratilova/
Garrison in 1990 Wimbledon?  And on a surface other than grass?  US Open in
1985 (Hana/Martina)?  Oh boy.  It would be wild, but I have my doubts.
James

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by James Ballou Bohli » Mon, 15 Jan 1996 04:00:00

: >
: > I still don't have the time to look at the women's draw yet...
: >
: > Ken.

: Well, I do.  I just don't have time to look at the men's.  :)  So here
: are some thoughts on the women:

: With Graf missing, seems to me Seles has a terrific chance of remaining
: unbeaten in Australia.  I would, however, expect her to meet Sanchez or
: Fernandez in the semis.  Although neither has played all that well lately
: (Fernandez had a lot of injuries, and Sanchez's play has fallen off the
: pinnacle it reached at last year's Wimbledon final), either could be a
: good matchup, since Sanchez will be fresh, and MJF has often played well
: in Australia (two finals, at least one sf, in which she had match point
: against Seles).  Zvereva could be an interesting quarterfinal match,
: though, if she gets that far, and we've never yet seen Seles play Majoli,
: which could also be fun.  It would nice if Rubin could get past Sabatini

Seles played Majoli once, in Oakland in 1992, when Iva had just joined
the tour.  She must have been only 14 (maybe 15) years old, and was not,
I'm sure, even ranked in the top hundred.  As one might expect, Monica
trounced her.  I think it would be a very interesting match today, as
they have very similar-looking games, and Iva does well against players
who hit with pace (cf., her record vs. Pierce).

: and start beating top-ten players, though.

: Bottom half:  Date vs. Hingis could make an intriguing 3rd round (I don't
: think Hingis will get past Date, or, if she does, Schultz, or, if she
: does, definitely not Pierce), and I'd love to see Coetzer playing Pierce
: in the 4th -- scramble vs clobber.

That could be a great one.  Remember this year at Toronto?  Mary had all
kinds of chances in the first set, lost it, scraped through the second,
and got bageled in the third.  Coetzer is just the kind of player who can
give Mary nightmares if she's even a bit off.

  I'd expect Huber to get past anyone
: in her eighth of the draw except, with apologies to Amy Frazier, possibly
: Helena Sukova, who also has a good record in Australia (two finals, at
: least two sfs, I think), although she's "aging" in tennis terms.

With all due respect to Helena, who's had a great record in Australia, I
think her best results are behind her.  She simply cannot keep up with
the hard hitters from the baseline, and the serve-and-volley doesn't seem
consistently strong enough to make a considerable impression on the big
returners, e.g. Seles, Pierce, Davenport.

  Bottom
: quarter...Davenport, G Fernandez, Martinez -- Martinez should come
: through, I think.  So I guess my picks for the semis are Seles, Sanchez
: (or MJF, possibly), Pierce, and Martinez.

I think a Pierce/Martinez sf would be fascinating.  Last year Mary just
took off midway through the 1st set and creamed her (though I think that
has much to do with Conchita's *horrid* attitude), and then last year at
La Costa, Conchita returned the favor by the exact same score.  What will
happen this time?

: Wouldn't a Seles/Pierce final be fun?  They've never played each other.

They played, I believe, in Barcelona in 1992, but I don't know the
score (except that Seles won, and had very favorable comments about
Pierce after the match).  That being said, I am crossing my fingers that
we get this hard-hitting final.  That could be a barn-burner!!

: wg

James

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by jac.. » Mon, 15 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Well....

Majoli will probably meet McNeil in the 2R, and I think she is in real danger
of dropping out then. In the 3R, McNeil will face De Swardt, who
played rather well in Sydney. Anyway I think McNeil is in such a good form
that she will overcome her, and after seeing the results of Seles in Sydney, I
really doubt that she is strong enough to last a GS-tournament. In other
words, I think McNeil will defeat Seles in the QF, she is one of the _few_
players who has the mentally strength to beat top players like Graf and Seles.
=> McNeil in the semis!

I also think that MJ Fernandez will reach the semis after defeating ASV in the
4R. In the QF she'll probably meet Rubin, McGrath or possibly Kruger. I don't
think Sabatini will get very far in the AO, she _can_ reach the 4R, but that's
it.

Unlike a lot of other people, I think Date can get in truble already in the
1R, against Gavaldon. She played great here last year, and I think she can
shake Date a lot. I also think that Hingis will reach the 4R, after defeating
Gavaldon/Date in the 3R, but will lose to Schultz. Schultz will have a very
interesting Qf against either Coetzer or Raymond (who defeats Pierce in the
3R), and my guess is that Schultz, too, will reach the semis.

That leaves one more spot - which will go to  Anke Huber. She'll defeat an
exhausted Davenport in the QF, and posibly Sukova in the 4R. Sukova played
great here earlier, and I think she can do it again.

We have the two semifinals

McNeil  - MJ Fernandez
Schultz - Huber

and a final between McNeil and Schultz, which eventually McNeil will win...

My thoughts. I don't think everything will come true, but hope that _some_of
it will....

Jacob

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Benjamin » Wed, 17 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Quote:

>[deleted]...... Philippoussis seems to
>be a bit different from Kafelikov since he is a complete player
>but I guess Philippoussis needs to mature more to stand up
>with big names.

Kafelikov is very talented himself and has all the shots, power, and touch. He
is equally efficient at the net and on baseline. At the present moment I would
say he is more "complete" than Philippoussis although Mark is more talented.

Quote:
>[deleted]..... Muster is the real hurdle for Chang
>to make teh final assuming Agassi do not make semi.

Chang should take out Muster in straight sets although their head-to-head
record favours Muster. On paper Thomas has no real weapon to hurt Chang
(except perhaps his inside out forehand). Chang serves better, moves faster,
has more power off the ground, and vollies better. If he stays patient enough
he will win (in fact I wonder why Chang had only beaten him once in their
previous meeting).

_________________________
Benjamin Ma, Toronto



http://www.inforamp.net/~benma

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Benjamin » Thu, 18 Jan 1996 04:00:00

Quote:

>Probably because you have your facts wrong. Muster is the one with more power
>off the ground and Muster is the one who hurts Chang more with his power.
>However, I would predict a Chang win if they were to square off in Australia.
>Something about the hard courts seems to irritate Muster come the second week
>of GS's.

>Dan

I knew some people would disagree with me when I was writing "Chang has more
power off the ground than Muster". :) I understand why people tend to think
Chang's ground stroke lacks power: because he rarely shows it. When Chang is
playing against someone who is not as consistent as himself on the baseline,
he tends to just move him around until he makes error. This creates the
impression that "Chang has no power from the baseline but just consistency".

However when Chang plays against someone like Courier or Agassi whom he cannot
outplay by just keeping the ball in play, he hits out on every shot (with
consistency as well). Good examples are the 1994 US Open Round 16 match
against Agassi and the 1995 US open QF match against Jim Courier (esp. the 3rd
set). Have you ever seen Muster moved Courier or Agassi running from corner to
corner? Chang was doing that in those matches. The fact that Chang's able to
step in and takes the ball on the rise and hits it with minimum top spin makes
his strokes more powerful than Muster's (who prefers to let the ball drops and
hits it with tremendous top spin with his "windshield wipers" forehand). That
said, Chang's ground strokes, even at 100%, are not as big as those of
Sampras, Agassi, Courier or Becker (when they "go for it").

Courier was beaten by Chang last week in the Colonial Open 4-6, 0-6 and
Kafelinov also lost to Chang in the same tournament 5-7, 1-6. Those guys are
both as powerful as (if not more powerful than) Muster. So I am conservative
about your statement that "Muster is the one who hurts Chang more with his
power".

_________________________
Benjamin Ma, Toronto



http://www.inforamp.net/~benma

 
 
 

Australian Open Draw Thoughts

Post by Charles L » Fri, 19 Jan 1996 04:00:00

|| >[deleted]..... Muster is the real hurdle for Chang
|| >to make teh final assuming Agassi do not make semi.

|| Chang should take out Muster in straight sets although their head-to-head
|| record favours Muster. On paper Thomas has no real weapon to hurt Chang
|| (except perhaps his inside out forehand). Chang serves better, moves faster,
|| has more power off the ground, and vollies better. If he stays patient enough
|| he will win (in fact I wonder why Chang had only beaten him once in their
|| previous meeting).

   On the other hand, Chang can't hit with power at will like
an Agassi or Sampras.   He really relies on trying to set himself
up for winners, and if he is pressed to do this too often, he misses.
Chang plays a tightrope of a game.  He usually needs to keep his
errors down, take advantage of his opponent's errors, and then
keep pressure with his shots.

   As far as better serving, Chang has an erratic serve.   He can
hit 15 aces one day, and then go 40% first serves and no aces the
next.   His aces are not always those pressure aces (break points
down) but are somewhat more random.   Also, Chang is not the type
to attack Muster's serve or anyone else's.

    I think the reason Muster hurts Chang on clay is that clay
nullifies Chang's power which is not as hard as a Courier or
Agassi, that Muster is probably more consistent than Chang, and
therefore Chang feels he has to be aggressive to beat Muster, and
this causes Chang to make errors.   On a faster surface, Chang
ought to be able to hurt Muster more, but apparently, his record
doesn't show it.

--
Charles Lin