Croatian tennis player Marin Cilic went into the U.S. as the 14thseeded male tennis player in the world with the odds in the online tennis betting of winning the tournament stacked against him at 66-1. Two weeks later those who bet on him cashed in big time as he beat Kei Nishikori of Japan quite handily by scores of 6-3. 6-3. And 6-3 in New York City on September 8.
Hardly anybody expected the 25-year-old to win the event, including Cilic himself. Cilic wasn’t the lowest seeded player to win the U.S. Open, but he was probably the least expected to take it. In fact, the odds of a Cilic vs Nishikori final were very low indeed. When Andre Agassi won the event back in 1994 he was unseeded and when Pete Sampras captured it in 2002 he was seeded 17th.
Bring on the clay! Spring is in the air when you can hear feet sliding on red dirt. I am really looking forward to this year’s season which has a lot of interesting questions to answer.
- Will Nadal be as unbeatable as always?
- How will Djokovic perform after a spellbinding start to the season?
- Can Federer be able to convince the fans that he’s still a force or will the rivalry between Djokovic and Nadal tighten?
- Is it time for clay court demon Nicholas Almagro to step up and win a Masters title?
- Americans have suffered lately on the dirt, can they turn that trend around?
For Federer fans such as myself this is a pretty controversial or at least disappointing headline. What can the young Spaniard teach the Swiss maestro? Well maybe “teach” is the wrong word and maybe there isn’t a lesson to be learned about “wanting to win” but if there was, I could think of no better player to teach it than Rafael Nadal.
Because one of the problems in yesterday’s 6-3 6-2 beating in ATP Miami semi-finals was that Federer didn’t look comfortable from the second he stepped on court and after going down a break he didn’t seem to have it in him to fight back. We have seen this in Federer before, but it hurts every time. Sports is all about trying hard and giving your all and on this level you won’t get many games playing on 75 percent, even if you are the best player of all time.
Everybody has an opinion when it comes to rating the best and worst of things and it’s no different for sports. The year 2010 featured a lot of excellent athletic events and performances throughout the world, especially with the Winter Olympic Games and World Cup of soccer taking place. However, when it came time for 515 journalists across the world to vote for the sportsman of the year, the award went to 24-year-old tennis player Rafael Nadal of Spain.
Nadal had an exceptional year as he became just the fourth male ever during the tennis open era to win the tennis grand slam after winning Wimbledon, the French Open, and the U.S. Open. He ended up getting 16 per cent of the vote from the 515 journalists while Argentine soccer player Lionel Messi came in second place and Spanish soccer player Andres Iniesta came in third. Messi and Iniests are teammates with Barcelona of Spain’s La Liga.
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