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Preview of tonight's match-ups; late results from day 4

January 19, 2012 | 06:34 PM

MEN's MATCH-UPS in Day 5 include:

[starting at 7pm on The Tennis Channel]

- Nadal v Lacko Lukas won their 2nd set 6-0 in Doha last month

- Federer v Karlovic [after Nadal]; Notes below

- ISNER v Lopez [3rd up on Hissense stadium]; John 1-0 life time from '11 win 6-4, 6-2 in Paris

- Berdych v Anderson [3rd up on Margaret Court stadium]; never played, but Kevin is 3 inches taller... :)

FED. v IVO, life time record, 9 - 1, with:

- 3 Fed wins requiring an extra set

- 13 tie-breakers, 12 won by Fed with average score of 7-4

[Not on until 3am EST (Day 5 night matches)]

- Dolgopolov v Tomic

- Del Potro v Lu

WOMEN'S MATCH-UPS in Day 5 include: [starting at 7pm on The Tennis Channel]

- Azarenka v Barthel

- Wozniacki v Niculescue [after Azarenka]

- MCHALE v Jankovic [4th after Berdych on M. Court, or 3rd after Federer on Laver]

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LATE DAY 4 RESULTS: Americans Down to 4 players Remaining in the 3rd Rounds

MEN

Hewitt def. Roddick (3-6, 6-4, 6-4, retired)

Before last night, these two had had an 11 year history of long matches in important tournaments, with Roddick (a year and a half younger at 29) holding a 7-6 life time edge on the strength of taking the last 6 matches since '05 with the loss of only 3 sets (2 at Wimbledon in the '09 quarters when he won 6-4 in the 5th). In 5 matches at Majors on 4 surfaces, Roddick had won the last two in the quarters of the US Open ('06, '09). The first set promised an exciting battle which continued through sets two and three even after Roddick re-tweaked a right hamstring injury during a lunge early in the 2nd set. Hewitt broke serve and lead 3-0 before Roddick took a medical time-out which seemed to help. In the 3rd set, Andy looked like he would continue and might even gain control of the match when he came back from down double set point on his serve at 3-5. He went up 40-0 on Hewitt's next serve game before the Aussie put 3 first serves in (2 aces) and took the set 6-4.

Other MEN's seeds falling included (after #32 Bogomolov's 5 set loss to Llodra):

- #12 Simon upset by countryman Benneteau (7-5, 7-6, 1-6, 3-6, 6-2), a swap in what might be called

The French Quarter as it also houses #6 Tsonga and #14 Monfils (both winners last night)

- #19 Troicki upset in 5 sets by Kazakhstan's #92 ranked Kukushkin in only his 6th Major (at 24)

Seeds needing 5 sets to progress included:

- FERRER came back from down 1-2 against American Ryan Sweeting to win 6-2, 6-3

- #24 Kei Nishikori fought from 1-2 behind to win 6-1, 6-1 over #94 ranked Aussie Mathew Ebden

WOMEN

Seeds Falling:

- 22 year old American Vania King def. #15 Pavlyuchenkova 5-7, 6-3, 6-4

- Sana Errani def. #29 Petrova 6-2, 6-2

- Greta Arn def. #17 Cibulkova 6-2, 3-6, 10-8

- Makarova def. #25 Kanepi 6-2, 7-5

Seeds needing 3 sets to win:

- #2 Kvitova def. Navrro 6-2, 2-6, 6-4

- #27 Kirilenko def. 6-4, 1-6, 6-2



Americans falling:

- 18 year old Sloane Stephens lost to #18 Kuznetsova 7-6, 7-5

- 24 year old Jamie Hampton lost to #4 Sharapova 6-0, 6-1

This leaves three American women in the 3rd round: Serena (plays Arn); McHale (plays Jankovic); and King (plays Ivanovic). Should they win, they will probably face (respectively) the #7, the #1 and the #2 seeds. In other words, if McHale and King manage one more upset each in the 3rd round, they will almost certainly lose in the 4th round, when Serena herself will face someone she lost to the last time they played, on grass at Eastbourne in 2011. This would mean the least successful Australian Open for American women in memory.

In this respect, American women would still have outperformed American men: only #16 seed John ISNER remains in the draw's 3rd round. He faces a tough opponent (Lopez), followed by Rafa.

Rick

Australian Open 1.19.12


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