US Open Tennis 2012: Top Stars Who Must Play Better to Stay Alive

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US Open Tennis 2012: Top Stars Who Must Play Better to Stay Alive
Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

It did not take long for some of the better players in the 2012 US Open to get shown the door.

On the men's side, No. 10 seed Juan Monaco was eliminated in the first round by Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in a five-set struggle. It was a stunning loss for Monaco, who seemed in complete command with a 2-0 lead in sets, only to then watch it unravel, including two tiebreak losses.

An even bigger upset took place in the second round. No. 5 seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was sent packing by 52nd-ranked Martin Klizan. Tsonga had been considered by some to be a dark horse to win the tournament.

Apparently not.

On the women's side, we have seen a couple of pretty big upsets as well. In the first round, No. 8 seed Caroline Wozniaki was beaten, rather easily I might add, by Irina Begu.

Then, in the third round, 2011 French Open champion and No. 9 seed Na Li was eliminated by Laura Robson, who was ranked 89th in the world. But  that did not stop her from taking down Li in an excellent three-set battle.

Upsets are part of what makes the US Open so engrossing, and early on it looks like the 2012 version of the event will have plenty of twists, turns and surprises.

When and where the upset ax will fall next, no one knows.

However, in looking at the first few rounds of the tournament, if some of the top seeds do not pick up the pace and start playing better, it is only a matter of time before they are bitten by the upset bug as well.

After watching many matches, and after reviewing recaps, stats and highlights of other matches, I have identified seven such players who absolutely need to play better if they hope to stay alive.

Which players are they?

Read on to find out.

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