2011 Australian Open – Nick’s Picks – Men’s Singles Quarterfinals

Roger Federer (SUI) vs. Stan Wawrinka (SUI)

Federer dropped a set against Robredo in the fourth round, but he bounced right back and beat the Spaniard in four sets. He has looked a little vulnerable at times, but then he demonstrates why he has been one of the best two players in the world for a long time. Playing his good friend, Wawrinka, isn’t going to be easy for Federer. He is 6-1 against him and beat him three times in 2010, but to me Wawrinka seems like a more confident player than he was last year.

Wawrinka was absolutely too physical for Roddick in the fourth round and he was able to out-muscle the American and push him around the court. I feel Roddick needs to get back some of his strength to be a real competitor in the Grand Slams. The other men are more physical than he is and it is hurting his chances of winning another Grand Slam title. This is the second time Wawrinka has been to the quarters of a Grand Slam and I think he has a very good shot of reaching the semis.

You know what both men are going to do, but the difference to me is Federer’s variety and his ability to turn defense into offense so quickly. He also has a mental edge over Wawrinka and when you play somebody you know really well, that can be a big factor. I look for Federer to win, but this is going to be tough.

Nick’s Pick – Federer in 4 sets

Tomas Berdych (CZE) vs. Novak Djokovic (SRB)

This is the match I am most looking forward to watching. Both men were picked as youngsters and both have shown they are capable of winning on the big stage. Djokovic is 4-1 against Berdych, but Berdych beat him in straight sets in the semis of Wimbledon last year. Djokovic doesn’t really have a glaring weakness, he does everything extremely well and he is the definition of consistent. On the other hand, Berdych gets more firepower from his groundstrokes but is not as good as a mover as Djokovic.

This match could really go either way. If the heat is a factor then Berdych gets the advantage, if Berdych has any mental lapses than Djokovic will jump all over him. I think I am going to give a slight edge to Berdych based on the way both men are playing and what I have seen thus far, but it is the slightest of advantage’s. I certainly would not be surprised at all to see Djokovic advance.

What I would love is to hear your take on the Berdych/Djokovic clash. Who do you think is going to win and why?

Nick’s Pick – Berdych in 4 sets

Rafael Nadal (ESP) vs. David Ferrer (ESP)

Nadal took down Marin Cilic in straight sets and has yet to drop a set in four matches. He looks as good as he ever has and has an impressive 11-3 record against Ferrer. The two faced three times in 2010 and Nadal won each of those in straight sets.

After dropping the first set to Milos Raonic in the fourth round, Ferrer bounced back and beat Raonic 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 to reach the quarters of the Australian Open for the second time in his career. The fact that he knows Nadal so well and understands his game will really help Ferrer in this match. He won’t be surprised by anything Nadal does and he will be ready for everything Nadal has to throw his way. The difference in this match to me will be Nadal’s backhand and his overall firepower. I feel their movement is about equal, but Nadal has more offensive groundstrokes than Ferrer does and he has the ability to go from defense to offense in a split second. I look for a four-setter and for Nadal to advance to the semis!

Nick’s Pick – Nadal in 4 sets

Andy Murray (GBR) vs. Alexandr Dolgopolov (UKR)

I came away very impressed with Dolgopolov in his five-set win over Robin Soderling in the fourth round. He is smooth on the court, moves well, has solid groundstrokes and can hit with anybody. It seems like there is always a player you don’t expect to make a run deep into the second week at the Australian Open and this year it appears to be Dolgopolov. This is his first Aussie Open and he is into the quarters of a Grand Slam for the first time in his career.

Murray breezed by Jurgen Melzer 6-3, 6-1, 6-1 and has a 1-0 record against Dolgopolov (although that match was in 2006). Like Nadal, Murray hasn’t really been tested yet but I feel that is going to change. Dolgopolov plays a unique style and should be able to test Murray a bit. Unfortunately for Dolgopolov, Murray will not try to beat him up physically like Soderling attempted. Murray will move him around, return serve well and play great defense. That should be enough to offset what this tricky Ukrainian does.

Nick’s Pick – Murray in 4 sets

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~ by Nick's Picks on January 23, 2011.

8 Responses to “2011 Australian Open – Nick’s Picks – Men’s Singles Quarterfinals”

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Tennis DrawChallenge, Nick Bollettieri. Nick Bollettieri said: 2011 Australian Open – Nick's Picks – Men's Singles Quarterfinals: http://wp.me/pduQ3-Sr [...]

  2. hi nick
    match up wise
    djokovic has magnificent return of serve to neutralise berdych`s main weapon and get to rallies on berdyches service game and once the rallies begin i will give djokovic the edge because:
    djokovic has a good backhand down the line with which he can expose berdych`s somewhat awkward movement , berdych does have a tendency to struggle against players who can take the ball early and goes down the line with power which i think djokovic can do this to perfectly , although berdych`s movement has improved from the back of the court but he still doesn`t move well when it comes to move forward and djokovic can expose this weakness with drop shot , the weather on tuesday is not so hot with tempratures around 22 degrees of celcius and this won`t bother djokovic , furthermore the only time djokovic lost to berdych was at wimbledon on his least favourite surface , here in melburne the court speed is medium to slow in my opinion and this will also be to djokovic`s liking to retrive and he loves to counter punch big hitters shots like berdych.
    all in all i can see djokovic as the likely winner in 3 or 4 sets.

  3. Berdych only beaten Djokovic once before (wimbledon last year)Also thought Djokovic played very poor in that match. Berdych was all over him. Both players are looking good so far (berdych slight edge in form) This match up is definetely a match up Djokovic likes. Djokovic has a good record against players like Berdych (thinking of Del Potro, Soderling) Djokovic’s roots are couter punching. He’s not that offensive, he’d add an offensive style to his game, but in the basics it’s just an counter puncher first class. Djokovic loves the pace of Berdych and I thnk this one will go to Djokovic for certain (expect Djoker in 4)

  4. Federer cannot be picked in this one simply because hes Roger, or almost unbeatable. The way wonen play tennis could never be the same as men, but Justine Henin lost to someone that she had a 16-2 record against. This record cannot be compared to Roger’s 6-1 all time record against Stan though, who seems to have more confidence this year. Wawrinka is very similar to Simon, but with little more strength and speed. Roger isn’t just gonna breeze through the first two sets, which will probably be split to the end 7-5 4-6.7-6,6-7,4,6
    Sometimes it seems like Stan just lets people e destroy him in a set just to figure out how they play(reference Chennai tounament). After this happens, it seems like he doesn’t lose another game an the match. The man is a bit crazy. Crazy enough to pull away from Roger in five sets.

    When Russian women play against each other, it seems like your ability increases 100 notches since they’re playing someone from their country. Stan and Roger definitely aren’t women, but this should be a classic match.

  5. Agree, some good matches ahead. Unfortunately, too Eurocentric. If young qualifier, Milos Raonic ,makes it to the quarters, he may be the best story of the tournament. The only non-European left. (Serb that moved to Canada, age 3)

  6. [...] 2011 Australian Open – Nick's Picks – Men's Singles Quarterfinals … Tagged with: australian • french • french-open • grand-slam • picks • [...]

  7. Djokovic has more letters in his last name, so he’s going to win against Berdych. Unless he has to take on Wawrinka in the next round or Dolgopolov in the final, he should win it all.

    Seriously, Berdych does have a chance to take out Djokovic and hes not going to have a better opportunity for now. The same goes for Ferrer and Wawrinka. As long as he does not play like Florian Meyer, he should have a good chance of winning. In most cases the first four games show if either player is going to fight back, or fight for anything.People seem to surrender to Djokovic before he even takes the court, which is annoying. The top five are really good, but not invincible.

  8. I sure won’t ever pick Wawrinka to beat Federer again. After Stan’s performance against Roddick, I thought he had a chance to knock off his countryman. Wrong. Stan had no confidence and his shot selection was atrocious yesterday. Of course, Roger played very well. Djokovic did one set better than I thought he would. I predicted four sets. Nole was dialed in.

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