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Big Games Slowed Down in Italy

Raonic, Anderson out; Isner struggles


May 15, 2012 | 07:31 PM

Too much pasta, perhaps... In any event the red sauce on the court is slowing the ace count, which in Madrid was high enough to be more characteristic of a hard court - to see how the ace count in Madrid compared to other clay and hard events:

http://heavytopspin.com/2012/05/14/how-does-the-blue-clay-play/#comments

- Raonic racked up only 8 freebies on his serve in a 7-6 (5), 6-4 loss to Florian Mayer

- ISNER had 10 aces in a 2-6, 7-6 (3), 6-2 win over Kohlschrieber (John's tennis stank until he was 2 points from losing)

- Anderson had 9 aces in a 6-4, 7-5 loss to Ferrero

Between these three Big servers, they averaged just .7 aces per service game (not enough; Isner was lucky to get help from his opponent, who choked when serving for the match in the 2nd set). In his 3 set loss to Federer in Madrid, Raonic averaged almost 1.2 per game. Far more compelling is the comparison in the blog link above comparing Madrid's ace count this year with last year when it was on red clay.

Another Big man struggled to keep his footing today: Del Potro dropped a set to Llodra and had to break serve to finish the match in 6-4 in the 3rd, falling twice on his way to finally getting it down. He left the court covered in red sauce, and may well be muttering about the slippery clay in the windy conditions in Rome.

In terms of upsets, #13 Monfils lost to Ferrero and #15 Lopez lost to Granollers.

On the WOMEN's side:

- #10 Schiavone lost to Makarova, #15 b lost to Cristea and #11 Kirilenko lost to Pennetta

- Sharapova def. McHale 7-5, 7-5

FEATURED MATCHES (Wednesday):

- Federer v Belocq

- Nadal v Mayer

- Serena v Petrova

- Azarenka v Peer

Rome ATP. wTA 5.15.12


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