Medvedev vs Daniel / ATP Winston-Salem – The first mutual duel between Medvedev and Daniel…
A new tennis season announcement
After New Year’s holidays a new tennis season is going to start, a one that should be more interesting than previous few in which we could only see a domination of one single player. We are expecting duels between first two players in the world with great anticipation, A. Murray and N. Djokovic, and we will also have to see how much younger players who draw some attention to themselves in last year can do. Of course, we cannot forget about R. Federer and R. Nadal, who both announced their come back to the very top of the ATP rankings, and there is also always dangerous J.M. Del Potro who won long waited Davis Cup title together with his team mates to Argentina.
A close race for the top position at the ATP rankings is expected
Andy Murray took the top position at the ATP ranking at the end of the last season and showed a very good shape, but British also prepared seriously lately so he could show that this result is not a coincidence in coming season and that his reign is not going to be short-lived. The one thing that certainly goes in favour for Murray is the fact that in first half of the season Djokovic is defending significantly more points so current difference of only 630 points could be even bigger. To be more precise, Murray is defending his first title only in May at the Masters in Rome, so for him it is going to be very important to win some of the tournaments so he could start the second part of season with bigger point difference, and then he would be the one to defend the points from the Wimbledon and another three Masters.
Otherwise, during last months there were a lot of stories about the reasons for Djokovic’s fall, or the absence of motivation and his psychological shape which was one of his main advantages compered to his opponents. Djokovic is entering new season also without B. Becker with whom he separated after their disagreement about role of new member of the expert team, and he is controversial Pepe Imaz, self-proclaimed tennis guru who will try to return self-confidence to Djokovic with meditation and yoga, and all this so Djokovic could be back on the winning path. It is important here to emphasise that Djokovic already came to the very top of tennis even without help from mentioned healer and with great merit from M. Vajda who from this season is again the first man in his team. We are not going to comment a lot on this Djokovic’s decision, and time ahead of us will give us the best answer to the question how smart this move was, with addition that Vajda’s role and professionalism are not at all under the question mark here. Namely, he is the man who was with Djokovic when he was fighting his way to the very top of the world’s tennis and most certainly he knows him the best. We can only conclude that ahead of him is a very difficult job, and the results we will be able to see already at the following tournaments in Doha, Australian Open, Indian Wells and Miami where Djokovic will act as a defender of the titles.
What to expect from young players?
One of the more pleasant surprises from the previous season is young Austrian D. Thiem who reached 8th position at the ATP rankings with four won titles and a placement to the semi-finals of the Roland Garros. This is a great responsibility for young Austrian tennis player because in new season he will have to prove that he deserves his place among top ten players of the world. What might be a slight problem for him is the fact that most of his good results he achieved on the clay court so if he wants to make a progress Thiem will definitely have to improve his game on the other courts as well.
Besides Thiem, in next season a lot is expected from French L. Pouille and German A. Zverev. Both these players played several good tournaments during last season and to prove their status of upcoming stars in following season those results will have to be more constant not only periodic. Great advantage for Zverev is his very good serve that he could improve even more, and we do know how tall players with good serve can make a lot of trouble even for the best ones. During past times, a lot of names of young players were mentioned and announced as future stars but now play supporting role in world’s tennis. We do hope that these three mentioned before will stay on the right path and in a season ahead of us remain to be serious competition for those best ones.
Return of R. Federer and R. Nadal
By the end of last season, it was completely clear that without R. Federer and R. Nadal there was a huge void in world’s tennis. Namely, during previous few season these two players gave us countless number of good and attractive matches, which is certainly why we hope for them to be back to the top of world’s tennis pretty soon, and all this so they could intensify competition to make game more interesting. No matter that he is in his late years as a player, Federer is still good enough to be in the finals of any tournament he performs, and with that said he can certainly make Murray and Djokovic think a lot. On the other hand, Nadal payed huge price for his enormous physical efforts that he put himself on during his reign in the world of tennis. His frequent injuries prevented him to play in high levels so it is very hard to expect of Spanish to make some serious threats to leading duo on any hard court. We should also add here that last year Nadal had some serious troubles even against lower ranked tennis players therefore, it is quite realistic to expect him only to win some titles from the tournaments on the clay court.
In the end, we will also mention another three tennis players from whom we can always expect to flash at some point and to eliminate the biggest favourites from the tournaments. We are talking about S. Wawrinka, J.M. Del Potro and M. Raonic, of course. Swiss player played great at the Australian Open in previous two seasons so this season as well he should cause a lot of troubles to first favourites. Del Potro already managed to win over first two players and most certainly neither one of them wants to see him in their part of the draw in future. When it comes to M. Raonic, it is already clear that his serve makes a lot of problems for any other player so it is no wonder that Canadian got to the finals of the Wimbledon, in which he showed that he can be very dangerous on fast courts.
Anyhow, one very interesting season is ahead of us, one from which we expect a lot of good tennis at the first place, and already in next few days first preparing tournaments are starting as a warmup for the Australian Open, the tournament that is going to give us some answers on many questions regarding the shape of all players at the beginning of new season.