The 2014 U.S. Open at Flushing Meadows continues to one-up itself day by day as major seeds continue to tumble out of the bracket.
After stars such as No. 5 Maria Sharapova took a bow on Sunday, Monday's action saw No. 5 Milos Raonic and No. 7 Eugenie Bouchard head for the exit as well.
Of course, Tuesday's batch of showdowns features some of the biggest names left standing: No. 2 Roger Federer and No. 10 Caroline Wozniacki, and the path for high seeds is once again rocky at best.
In other words, Tuesday is sure to be another wild affair. Let's take a look at some of the early results and preview the marquee evening matchups.
2014 U.S. Open Day 9 Completed Scores
|No. 20 Gael Monfils def. No. 7 Grigor Dimitrov||7-5, 7-6, 7-5|
|No. 14 Marin Cilic def. 26 Gilles Simon||5-7, 7-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3|
|Shuai Peng def. Belinda Bencic||6-2, 6-1|
Note: Scores updated as of 3 p.m. ET on Sept. 2. Up-to-date scores can be found at USOpen.org.
Day 9 Evening Schedule
|Sept. 2||7 p.m.||No. 17 Roberto Bautista Agut vs. No. 2 Roger Federer|
|Sept. 2||9 p.m.||No. 10 Caroline Wozniacki vs. No. 13 Sara Errani|
Day 9 Evening Preview
No. 17 Roberto Bautista Agut vs. No. 2 Roger Federer
Federer has been the subject of much criticism so far thanks to his simplistic path to the final, whereas No. 1 Novak Djokovic has been hit with a seemingly unfair set of potential matchups.
So it should come as no shock, then, that Federer is through to the fourth round of the U.S. Open for the 14th consecutive time. Let that digest for a moment.
But now understand that the path gets much more difficult Tuesday night under the bright lights of Arthur Ashe Stadium. Thank No. 17 Roberto Bautista Agut for that.
The Spanish star struggled in his opener and went to five sets with Andreas Haider-Maurer, but regained his form quickly and earned straight-set triumphs over both Tim Smyczek and Adrian Mannarino.
To his credit, Federer is well aware of the challenge Bautista Agut poses despite the fact the two have never played one another, as captured by Howard Fendrich of the Associated Press:
He's quick on his feet. He doesn't miss much. He's consistent. He's got a pretty good first serve. He's overall a solid player. I would assume he's fit, too, because he comes from the Spanish tennis school...They just know how to train hard. They never get tired. They're always ready to go. They have a good mental approach, point-for-point mentality.
Federer is right to take the duel seriously, even if most have already penciled him in through to the next round. After all, he looked miserable and lost his first set against Marcel Granollers this past weekend. Bautista Agut has enough talent to capitalize on another misstep.
As far as Tuesday's action goes, there is no better match to have in the spotlight.
No. 10 Caroline Wozniacki vs. No. 13 Sara Errani
To close out Tuesday, fans will be treated to Caroline Wozniacki's quest for a title now that she is the lone top-10 player left in the bracket, sans No. 1 Serena Williams.
Wozniacki has been on fire since the first round. She took straight-set triumphs over Aliaksandra Sasnovich and No. 18 Andrea Petkovic before pulling off one of the biggest upsets of all so far courtesy of a 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 triumph over the aforementioned Sharapova.
After, Sharapova detailed something that should ring the alarm bells of those left in the bracket, as illustrated by TennisNow:
Sharapova says Wozniacki is doing the same things she's always done, but better. More about the upset here >>> http://t.co/UjGqiw4wDf— TennisNow (@Tennis_Now) August 31, 2014
That said, No. 13 Sara Errani is no slouch. She was able to fend off No. 19 Venus Williams in the third round before a victory over Mirjana Lucic-Baroni in which she fired off nine unforced errors to her opponent's 69.
History is no help when it comes to picking a winner here. The two stars have split their lone pair of matchups, and even worse, the most recent came about four years ago.
In a fresh matchup to finish off Tuesday's action, something has to give. Will it be Wozniacki and her huge amount of momentum that pulls through, or Errani's error-free play?
Fans would be wise to tune in and find out.