Saturday is Day 6 of the 2014 U.S. Open, and there is a full slate of action on tap for tennis fans. In fact, the No. 1 seed on both the men’s and the women’s side of the bracket are in action, among plenty of other top-notch competitors.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the full singles schedule for the entire day before digging into a couple of predictions for the matches to watch. A complete bracket for the Grand Slam event can be found here.
|(1) Novak Djokovic||Sam Querrey||Arthur Ashe Stadium||2nd Match|
|Nick Kyrgios||Tommy Robredo||Arthur Ashe Stadium||5th Match|
|(9) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga||Pablo Carreno Busta||Grandstand||3rd Match|
|Andrey Kuznetsov||(8) Andy Murray||Louis Armstrong Stadium||2nd Match|
|(22) Philipp Kohlschreiber||(13) John Isner||Louis Armstrong Stadium||3rd Match|
|(3) Stan Wawrinka||Blaz Kavcic||Louis Armstrong Stadium||4th Match|
|(10) Kei Nishikori||(23) Leonardo Mayer||Court 17||1st Match|
|Victor Estrella Burgos||(5) Milos Raonic||Grandstand||1st Match|
|(1) Serena Williams||Varvara Lepchenko||Arthur Ashe Stadium||3rd Match|
|(30) Barbora Zahlavova-Strycova||(7) Eugenie Bouchard||Arthur Ashe Stadium||4th Match|
|(29) Casey Dellacqua||Karolina Pliskova||Court 17||2nd Match|
|Kaia Kanepi||(15) Carla Suarez-Navarro||Court 17||3rd Match|
|Zarina Diyas||(17) Ekaterina Makarova||Court 5||4th Match|
|Elena Vesnina||(16) Victoria Azarenka||Grandstand||2nd Match|
|(11) Flavia Pennetta||Nicole Gibbs||Arthur Ashe Stadium||1st Match|
|(3) Petra Kvitova||Aleksandra Krunic||Louis Armstrong Stadium||1st Match|
No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. Sam Querrey
No. 1 Novak Djokovic may have won Wimbledon, but he’ still trying to find his rhythm on the court again after losing early in Cincinnati and Toronto.
He’s a dominant force though, and there is no better setting than the U.S. Open for him to play like the top player in the world again. He has made the finals four consecutive years at Flushing Meadows and hasn’t lost before the semifinals since 2006. He completely controlled the match against Paul Henri-Mathieu in straight sets in the second round as well.
The U.S. Open Twitter account even took note that Djokovic looks to be on top of his game:
That victory sets up a third-round date with American Sam Querrey. Querrey will theoretically have some of the crowd support behind him as an American, although tennis crowds often pull for the marquee superstars at the Grand Slams.
Querrey at least has the chance to keep this match close if he can stay on serve with his powerful stroke. He may even steal a set.
Still, Djokovic is 7-1 in his career in head-to-head matches against Querrey.
Djokovic’s incredible success at Flushing Meadows and the head-to-head mastery is too hard to ignore when projecting this match. Look for No. 1 to take another important step toward that fifth consecutive appearance in the U.S. Open finals.
Prediction: Djokovic in four sets.
No. 1 Serena Williams vs. Varvara Lepchenko
Djokovic isn’t the only No. 1 seed looking to make waves at the U.S. Open.
Serena Williams is yet to advance past the fourth round of a Grand Slam this year, but if she gets the third-round win Saturday, she will get the chance to do just that.
Don’t let the recent struggles at majors fool you though. She has 17 Grand Slam victories under her belt and plenty of momentum after winning five titles this season. She was also a perfect 18-0 heading into the U.S. Open against the top 10, which means if she can get past Varvara Lepchenko she will take another step toward the late stages against that top competition she has dominated.
Thus far, Williams has only lost five total games at the U.S. Open and only dropped a single game in the second round. She even commented on the fact that she battled through the elements, via Lynn Zinser of The New York Times:
“It’s so hard to play out here in the wind. One side of the court, it’s so hard. It makes it really difficult. I’m happy to get through a solid match with the conditions today.”
Lepchenko brings a powerful forehand, athleticism and speed to the table, and she isn’t afraid to attack the net. However, she lost to Williams in both of their head-to-head matches and hasn’t consistently proven she can play with the world’s best.
Williams is absolutely on top of her game right now, and the two-time defending champion appears well on her way to another deep run at Flushing Meadows. Lepchenko will not offer much resistance.
Prediction: Williams in straight sets.
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