US Open Tennis 2013: Top Seeds with Toughest Road to Final

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 23, 2013

CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 18:  Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates his win over John Isner during the final of the Western & Southern Open on August 18, 2013 at Lindner Family Tennis Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The draw for the 2013 U.S. Open has been unveiled, and there are some mouth-watering matchups that fans could see before the final. In addition, there are plenty of top seeds who could fall by the wayside early in the tournament.

The 2013 edition of the Wimbledon Championships was one of the most enjoyable Grand Slams in recent memory. Aside from Andy Murray's historic win, the tournament was riddled with huge upsets. There wasn't a day that went by that didn't see some big stars getting knocked off way before you expected them to.

The U.S. Open has a lot of work to do if it's going to compete with that.

Top seeds will have to be on the lookout. There are quite a few intriguing prospective matches from the third round on. These four stars could have to run the gauntlet if they're to make it through to the final.

You can view the complete draw on the U.S. Open's official site.


Men's Singles

No. 3 Andy Murray

I guess winning a Wimbledon title doesn't get you any special privileges at the U.S. Open. The No. 3 player in the world has been drawn in the same semifinal as Novak Djokovic, so there won't be any repeat of the 2012 U.S. Open final when Murray knocked off Djokovic to win his first Grand Slam.

The Serbian star has the head-to-head advantage, having won 11 of the 19 meetings between the two. Of course, that match hinges on both guys getting that far.

Murray might have to get past the fifth-seeded Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinal. Berdych has a career 6-4 record against the Scotsman, most recently beating him in Cincinnati, Ohio, at the Western and Southern Open.


No. 2 Rafael Nadal

It probably wouldn't be much better for Murray if he was the No. 2 seed.

Rafael Nadal could be in a precarious position if that quarterfinal with Roger Federer comes to fruition. You get the feeling that Federer has at least one more really good run left in the tank. He's always done well at Flushing Meadows, qualifying for at least the quarterfinals in each year since 2004.

To get that far, Nadal might have to go through Nikolay Davydenko in the third round. The 33-year-old Russian has won four of his last five meetings against Nadal.

John Isner could also give the Spanish star a very hard time should they meet in the fourth round.


Women's Singles

No. 4 Sara Errani

It's a bit surprising that Sara Errani was able to snag the fourth seed at the U.S. Open. She is the fifth-ranked player on the WTA Tour and moved up a spot after Maria Sharapova's withdrawal (h/t USA Today).

The 26-year-old did make it to the semifinal of the French Open, but she lost in the first round at the Australian Open and Wimbledon.

Last year was the first in which Errani made it past the third round of the U.S. Open.

She might have trouble making it past the third round in 2013 if she meets Svetlana Kuznetsova, who has a record of 5-1 against Errani.


No. 3 Agnieszka Radwanska

Nobody wants to be drawn in the same half as Serena Williams. She is playing some of the best tennis of her career and will be smarting from her loss to Victoria Azarenka in the final of the Western and Southern Financial Open.

Agnieszka Radwanska has never beaten Williams in six chances. In those six matches, Radwanska has only won a lone set. She better hope Serena is out by the time she reaches the semifinal, otherwise that is as far as she'll get in Flushing Meadows.

A possible date in the fourth round with Sabine Lisicki also looms on the horizon. Lisicki upset Radwanska in the semifinal at Wimbledon and would be an extremely tough opponent.