Australian Open 2012 TV Schedule: 5 Bold Predictions for Jan. 19
With highest ranked American Mardy Fish taking an early bow at this year's Australian Open, we have seen that anybody is able to come through victorious Down Under.
On this Thursday's schedule, there is a possibility that a few favorites could be upset.
With today's matches coming up, here is a look at some bold predictions for day four's events.
Maria Sharapova Will Lose Just Two Games Against Jamie Hampton
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Maria Sharapova is back, and is looking better than ever.
She cruised through her first round match over Gisela Dulko 6-0, 6-1 and should be looking to continue her success as the No. 4 seed against American Jamie Hampton.
Sharapova has been looking like her old self, and she has her eyes set on this year's final.
Hampton is just a qualifier, but she handled Mandy Minella easily in her first round match, only dropping a game in each set.
This one will be much more difficult for Hampton. Don't expect Sharapova to let her get many games.
Prediction: Sharapova wins 6-0, 6-2
Ryan Sweeting Will Give David Ferrer a Scare
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The No. 5 seed David Ferrer is a clear favorite in this matchup, but American Ryan Sweeting will give him a scare in the second round.
Sweeting is coming off a convincing straight set win over German Matthias Bachinger.
While Ferrer is a completely different animal, things are riding high for the young American and he's going to go all out on the Spaniard.
I still expect Ferrer to come out of this one alive, but he will be tested for sure.
He had a convincing win over Rui Machado in the previous round, only giving up seven games through three sets.
Things won't be as easy this time around, but Ferrer should still be able to come out of this one victorious.
Prediction: Ferrer wins in five sets 6-4, 7-6, 4-6, 4-6, 6-3
Julien Benneteau Will Upset Gilles Simon
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Even though he is ranked No. 14 in the world, Gilles Simon is awful in Grand Slam play.
He's only made it out of the fourth round once, reaching the quarterfinals of the 2009 Australian Open.
Last season, Simon was knocked out in the second round, and it looks like that will be the result once again when he takes on Julien Benneteau.
Simon is coming off a five-set win over Danai Udomchoke, once again proving his struggles in these tournaments.
In the meantime, Benneteau is coming in with an easy three-set win over Karol Beck. He's also looking solid right now, losing in the final of his last tournament before entering the slam.
Simon still has a lot to prove, but it looks like he will be bowing out early once again.
Prediction: Benneteau takes it in four 7-5, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6
Australian Jelena Dokic Will Take Down No. 9 Marion Bartoli
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In her first round match, No. 9 seed Marion Bartoli had a rough first set with fellow country mate Virginie Razzano.
Bartoli struggled in the first set, despite winning it 7-5. She did take the second set easily (6-0), but she could fall victim to Australian hopeful Jelena Dokic if she gets caught behind and in the uproar of the home crowd.
The Aussie, ranked No. 64 in the world, is coming into this match with a convincing victory over Anna Chakvetadze, winning 6-2 and 6-1.
Dokic will certainly be tested in this huge match, but she could be able to find a lot of success if she gets winning early on.
If she takes the first set, Dokic could surprise many here and take the match.
Prediction: Dokic wins 7-5, 4-6, 6-3
Lleyton Hewitt Will Take Down Andy Roddick in an Epic Five Setter
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Australian hopeful Lleyton Hewitt is coming off a huge four-set win over Germany's Cedrik-Marcel Stebe in the first round.
While Hewitt will keep having to fight a tough road to continue moving along in this tournament, things will not get any easier when he takes on American Andy Roddick in the second round.
Roddick is coming into this tourney as the No. 15 seed, and is looking to revitalize his career after a downright terrible 2011.
Hewitt is motivated to take a run in front of the home crowd, and that can get one pretty far in this sport.
Roddick will likely keep in it until the end, but the Aussie will fight his way through to the third round.
With Fish out of the tournament, hope for the Americans will continue to run slim.
Prediction: Hewitt wins 4-6, 7-5, 6-3, 5-7, 6-2