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US Open 2020

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Post by sirfredperry Fri 28 Aug 2020, 9:43 am

First topic message reminder :

Devoid of many top players or not, the USO starts on Monday.

I know some will feel that this is a devalued Slam with so many absentees. But others might reckon there are no asterisks (*) in sport. Jan Kodes, for example, is still 1973 Wimbledon champion despite the mass boycott.

What it does mean is that Djoko looks an almost certain winner in New York this time. I would have put him as favourite even if there had been a full field of players. What does that make him now? Super-favourite, mega-favourite, a shoo-in?

The bad news for Kyle Edmund is that he could face Djoko in the second round. Murray starts against Nishioka and could later meet Dan Evans. Konta begins against Heather Watson, while Cameron Norrie has a tough one against Diego Schwartzman.

Apart from seeing how far Murray can go, probably the only interest in the men's is to see just who will emerge to play Djoko in the final. Or have I got it wrong?

The women's Slams have been unpredictable of late even when everyone turns up so gawd knows who's likely to win this time. You could argue it's all set up for Serena but I don't think anyone is afraid of her any more and each of her recent Slam final performances have been really poor.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 8:45 pm

A good start by Carreno Busta level at 4-4 with Djokovic and managing to stick in rallies and win them. Djoko serving superbly.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:04 pm

Drama galore on Arthur Ashe.

Djokovic misses out on three break points then falls on his shoulder. Carreno Busta breaks to lead 6-5 and a lines person promptly collspses after Djoko fires a ball at them but it looked totally accidental. Tournament referee now on court.


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Post by Duty281 Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:05 pm

Djoko in trouble? Seemed to hurt his shoulder earlier, now he's gone a break down in the first set.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:07 pm

Tournament referee talking to Novak Djokovic.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:08 pm

Duty281 wrote:Djoko in trouble? Seemed to hurt his shoulder earlier, now he's gone a break down in the first set.

In trouble on two accounts.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:09 pm

Djokovic could be facing disqualification.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:10 pm

Long discussion continues between referee and Djokovic who does seem calm.
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Post by Duty281 Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:11 pm

Yes, just saw the incident after I typed. Has to be disqualified for that. Tim Henman and a opponent of GB's in the Davis Cup (I think) were disqualified for similar incidents.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:11 pm

It looks like the end of Novak's US Open though.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:12 pm

I feel sorry for Carreno Busta here. He is having to sit and wait.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:13 pm

And Djokovic is defaulted. WOW.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:14 pm

Djokovic exits Arthur Ashe and is defaulted from the US Open. The referee had no choice there.

Remarkable.
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Post by Duty281 Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:15 pm

Well done to the officials for not bottling that call. It was 100% the right decision.

That's extraordinary, though. The watertight favourite for the title is out in the most unusual of circumstances.


Last edited by Duty281 on Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:18 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by sirfredperry Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:18 pm

Djoko is OUT - he's been disqualified after a ball he fired in anger ended up hitting a line judge.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:18 pm

Agreed Duty. It was the right decision.

Djokovic will be distraught. He was a shoo-in for the title no doubt. Amazing drama. So we will have a first time slam winner in the US Open.
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Post by Soul Requiem Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:19 pm

What a spoilt brat.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:20 pm

Follows Tim Henman in being defaulted from a slam.
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Post by sirfredperry Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:21 pm

Well. This is certainly one of the biggest incidents at a men's Slam for, ooh I don't know....ages.

One thing for sure, now. We're going to get a new Slam winner and the rest of the guys in it will now fancy their chances.




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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 9:32 pm

Staggering events.

Credit to Carreno Busta for hanging tough. He looked to lose the first set when he was 4-5 and 0-40 down he dug himself out of that hole and then Djokovic fell on his shoulder and Carreno Busta broke serve and Djokovic imploded.
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Post by Duty281 Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:00 pm

The pathway looks pretty good for Zverev to make his first Grand Slam final. Bottom half looks a bit more crowded with Medvedev (now the bookmakers favourite) and Thiem, plus the dangerous and in form FAA as well as Berrettini who hasn't yet dropped a set. But all the rest will know this is their best chance of winning a Grand Slam to date, with all of Federer/Nadal/Djokovic out of the way.

Tournament blown wide open.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:05 pm

At present you could pick anyone from Thiem, Zverev, Medvedev, Shapovalov and Auger-Akissiame for the title.
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Post by MrInvisible Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:09 pm

Just tried to see what happened here on YouTube, though it's bit difficult as you don't actually see the impact of when the ball strikes the line judge.  It doesn't look especially hard and at first glance he looks unlucky and it's not as reckless as many other petulant hits of the ball in anger I've witnessed over the years.  However, the rules are very clear - its a default, plain and simple, and Djokovic is experienced enough to know better.  When Henman did this back in 1995 he was a fresh-faced 20 year old at beginning of his career, and learnt from this chastening experienced.

For me this is most dramatic moment in a mens' slam since Nadal lost to Soderling in 2009 at Roland Garros.  So we will get a new slam winner finally, and perhaps this tournament will herald the beginning of a new era.  I make the favourites as follows:

1) Medvedev, just - based on reaching a final here last year where he pushed Nadal all the way and all those hardcourt matches he won in the summer.
2) Thiem - the highest ranked player left in tournament and a 3 time finalist who pushed Djokovic hard back in Australian Open.  The case against is that apart from a great match against Nadal couple of years ago he's not done especially well at Flushing Meadow over the years.  Is the court a bit too fast for his game?
3) Zverev, whose path has really opened up in what is the easier half of the draw.  The case against has been on whether he can bring his A game to the big matches in latter stages of a slam so far, but at least he's not wasting his energy in needless 5 setters just yet this time round.

After that it's wide open - this tournament is an excellent opportunity for one of the younger players with self-belief and Carreno Busta and Coric may fancy their chances too.  Sometimes, a big shock can have a slightly unsettling effect on other players left in draw - adding a bit of pressure, and we may get another shock or two.

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Post by Just John Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:12 pm

Goodbye, Djoko Laugh

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:19 pm

I think whoever can keep themselves in the moment and play each match instead of thinking ahead to winning the title will be best placed for the title.
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Post by Duty281 Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:45 pm

Djokovic leaves without doing a press conference, which shows his complete level of immaturity. He also commented during the incident:

"She doesn't have to go to the hospital for this."
"You're going to choose a default in this situation? My career, grand slam, center stage."

https://twitter.com/BenRothenberg/status/1302701170201374722

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Post by Soul Requiem Sun 06 Sep 2020, 10:54 pm

Duty281 wrote:Djokovic leaves without doing a press conference, which shows his complete level of immaturity. He also commented during the incident:

"She doesn't have to go to the hospital for this."
"You're going to choose a default in this situation? My career, grand slam, center stage."

https://twitter.com/BenRothenberg/status/1302701170201374722

The guys a prat and always has been, about time he showed some humility.

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Post by Atila Mon 07 Sep 2020, 1:54 am

It's a good job it's Djokovic who defaulted and not Serena. She would be telling everyone that if a man had committed the same offence it would be overlooked.

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Post by alfie Mon 07 Sep 2020, 3:52 am

Well that just goes to show nothing is certain in sport ...and why bookmakers tend to make money Smile

Djokovic appeared to have this tournament at his mercy in the absence of the other big guns but has found a novel way to crash out. Haven't seen it myself but from what I'm reading he can't really complain- though I expect he will...

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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 7:54 am

Interesting that MrI harked back to the 2009 French.

When Soderling bt Rafa that year, everyone's first thought was that Federer would never have a better chance to win at RG.

So what happens. Fed almost loses to Haas in the very next round (remember the inside-out forehand that saved BP with Tommy poised to serve for the match?).

Then Rog is trailing delpo in the semis before coming thru and finally claiming the French crown.

11 years on and Thiem, Medvedev and co are in a similar position to Fed in Paris. Will the pressure get to them?

Djoko has now issued a grovelling apology, having not given a press conference after the match.

After the "Covid-19 Tournament" he organised and following this disqualification, Djoko's hardly in a position to start a new players' association.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 10:47 am

As I said the winner will be the one who can stay in the moment and not think about what a golden chance to win a slam this is. Out of those left in Thiem, Medvedev and Carreno Busta have experience of slam semis and beyond.
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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 10:53 am

Just seen a clip of the Djoko incident. Yes, he didn't hit the ball very hard, but it caught the lines lady full toss in the throat.

The rules are clear and Djoko does have form for this. At best it was unfortunate and at worst it was reckless. In any case, disqualification was the only outcome.

I see Kyrgios, who has little time for Djoko, has posted a tongue-in-cheek response on social media asking people to suggest how long he, Nick, would have been suspended if he'd hit a linesperson.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 11:28 am

What hasn't helped this situation is the paranoia wrapped up in Novak Djokovic's mind. He has always held the premise that nobody loves him when the fact of the matter is that Federer and Nadal are just more popular than him. There is no 'hate' there. And I have no doubt that paranoia was there in his head as he talked with the referee on court. He needed someone to remind him of this clear default rule. It has always been implemented in the past and will be implemented in the future regardless of who the player is.
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Post by theslosty Mon 07 Sep 2020, 1:11 pm

The rules are what they are but to me the instant disqualification is a bit harsh given it's accidental and he doesn't hit the ball very hard. If he was punished with the loss of a game or even a set that would be more proportionate imo.
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Post by No name Bertie Mon 07 Sep 2020, 1:16 pm

I haven't been paying much attention to the US Open apart from looking at the headlines.


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Post by Jeff Navarro Mon 07 Sep 2020, 2:15 pm

Does anyone not think Djokovic copped out? He fell over and was milking that his shoulder was badly hurt. Everyone knows his gamesmanship antics. He tried to mentally break his opponent and it didn’t work. Maybe he didn’t have the stomach for the fight? And luckily his errantly hit ball ended his potential misery.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 2:48 pm

Jeff Navarro wrote:Does anyone not think Djokovic copped out? He fell over and was milking that his shoulder was badly hurt. Everyone knows his gamesmanship antics. He tried to mentally break his opponent and it didn’t work. Maybe he didn’t have the stomach for the fight? And luckily his errantly hit ball ended his potential misery.

Nah. Definitely not.

Novak Djokovic was even more of a shoo-in for the title than Hamilton is for the F1 title. All he needed to do was play out his matches to a decent standard and he'd have won.

I was watching the match. He had a golden chance to break serve in the 10th game. He led 5-4 40-0 (three set points) on Carreno Busta's serve but missed an opportunity he normally gobbles up and had already walloped one ball into the side wall in that game. In the following game Carreno Busta broke serve and as Djokovic was about to walk back to seat for changeover he took a ball and whacked it behind him and it just happened to hit lineswoman in the throat.

Even if Carreno Busta had won the first set I would still have bet on Djokovic turning it around to win in four.
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Post by dummy_half Mon 07 Sep 2020, 3:13 pm

theslosty wrote:The rules are what they are but to me the instant disqualification is a bit harsh given it's accidental and he doesn't hit the ball very hard. If he was punished with the loss of a game or even a set that would be more proportionate imo.

It wasn't accidental to hit the ball away without looking after the end of the point - reckless is definitely the best description, even if it wasn't the intent to hit a line judge. As for how hard it was or wasn't, how do you start to make a subjective judgement on that that would affect the severity of the punishment? Really has to be a consistently applied sanction - slightly different debate as to whether DQ is the correct sanction generally, but that is what is in the rules as currently written, and they were correctly applied.

Djokovic knows that he shouldn't be hitting balls around like that, and needs to retain some self control to prevent the possibility of an incident like this happening - that he has a bit of a history for taking a swipe at the ball after points are over means that it was really just luck that he's not hit someone before (I'm sure Shapovalov is a bit more reluctant to bash a loose ball around after his Davis Cup DQ)

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 4:03 pm

Match of the Day for me today is on Arthur Ashe Court. Dominic Thiem (probably the favourite to win the tournament now) ranked No 2 plays the teenage up and coming star against Felix Auger-Alissiame. It will be interesting to see how the youngster copes with the growing expectation and growing importance of the match.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 4:08 pm

First up is Vasek Pospisil against Australian Alex De Minaur. I take Pospisil to win this in four sets.
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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 5:12 pm

de Mibaur saves four set points and takes it 7-6 in 58 minutes. Pospisil will regret that I feel. Looking at the Canadian's route through to this stage he has had some long matches and his right calf is heavily bandaged. It will take a Herculean effort to win from here.
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Post by Duty281 Mon 07 Sep 2020, 5:12 pm

What a comeback from De Minaur on the 1st set tie-break. 2-6 down, rattles off six straight points (including an incredible recovery from a net-cord that didn't go his way) to take the set.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 5:30 pm

And de Minaur breaks in the second set to lead 7-6 3-1. Its looking ominous now for Pospisil.
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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 5:54 pm

De Minaur now two sets up while Serena takes the first set in her match.

It might have taken the pandemic to do it plus the Djoko meltdown, but the young guns are beginning to come to the fore.


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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 6:31 pm

Once he lost that first set it had a crushing effect on Pospisil. Impressive win for de Minaur though. He really has developed a lot since I last saw him play.
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Post by MrInvisible Mon 07 Sep 2020, 7:22 pm

Watched the Djokovic line judge moment again properly from a better angle and it looks worse than it first did when I saw it initially and really cannot see how it can have been anything other than a default. Also saw something from commentators that he'd blasted a ball even harder 5 minutes previously, and clearly his luck finally ran out here. Back in the day when I used to do some grassroots coaching with kids one of the safety rules I drummed into them from day one was never to blast a ball back when play had stopped (there was always one fidgety child who struggled to control themselves and resist temptation to blast a ball when the rest of us were collecting the balls).

Appreciate it's a high intensity sport with a lot of pressure but a player of Djokovic's experience should know better not to needlessly endanger others. Hope he's learnt his lesson and shows more humility in the future.

Not surprised that De Minaur beat Pospisil - Pospisil had a long match and is more of a doubles specialist. De Minaur is a tidy player with nice clean groundstrokes though perhaps lacking bit of firepower.

So, what effect will the Djokovic shock exit have on the Felix A A vs Thiem match? I'm still going to stick my neck out and go for the upset here - Felix is playing with a lot of confidence.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 07 Sep 2020, 7:33 pm

MrInvisible wrote:

So, what effect will the Djokovic shock exit have on the Felix A A vs Thiem match?  I'm still going to stick my neck out and go for the upset here - Felix is playing with a lot of confidence.

It is a very interesting match-up. For the first time in his career Thiem is perhaps favourite to win a slam going into the second week. How does he cope with that? Auger-Alissiame is now being talked about more and more as the next big thing in men's tennis. How does he cope with that? Also how do both approach it knowing that Djokovic is now out?
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Post by Duty281 Mon 07 Sep 2020, 7:47 pm

Certainly the tie of the round, but I think Thiem will have too much sustained quality for FAA, who hasn't been put under much continual pressure in this tournament. Wouldn't be surprised to see FAA win, but I'll go for Thiem in 4.

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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 8:39 pm

Thiem 4-2 up in the first set.

Serena was a break down in her third set but came through. As I said earlier, there seems to be no problem for her to get to GS finals. It's the next step that has been beyond her in recent years.

Another mum still in it - Pironkova - was, I think, serving for the match but was broken by Cornet. So this one may go on for a while.

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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 8:56 pm

F A-A breaks back in first set v Thiem. Score now 5-5.

Cornet takes her match to a third set.

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Post by sirfredperry Mon 07 Sep 2020, 9:14 pm

Thiem takes first set on tiebreak (7-4).

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