Monday, September 8, 2008

My Money's on Murray...

I know this may seem weird coming from an avid Rafa fan, but hats off to Andy Murray!!!

The newest addition to the world's top 4 is a sizzling 21-year-old Scottsman and he just ousted world number 1, Rafael Nadal from the US Open semifinals with his ripping backhand and relentless returns.

After the match was suspended on Saturday due to rain, many thought that Nadal had a strong chance of making a comeback on Sunday despite the Spaniard being down 2 sets to love. Nadal, who was up a break in the 3rd set, stepped on court upbeat on Sunday and managed to hold serve throughout the set to win it 6-4. He then had to save 7 breakpoints in a marathon second game of the 4th set before he secured his service game and he went on to break Murray to love and go up 3-1.

I honestly thought it was going to a fifth set but Murray did not waver for a second. The Scott broke back and leveled at 3-3 and continued to pressure Nadal with his insane returns and backhands until the Spaniard faltered at 4-5 and conceded the game, the set and the match to Murray, who has now reached his first Grand Slam final and has improved his poor record against Rafa to 1-5.

Murray's next opponent will be none other than the great Roger Federer, who is looking to win his 5th straight US Open title and first Grand Slam of the season.

Surprisingly enough, Murray is one of the very few active players who have a positive head-to-head record over the Swiss. Murray leads 2-1 in their previous meetings and has won the two most recent ones, earlier this year in Dubai where he beat Federer 6-7, 6-3, 6-4 and in Cincinnati in 2006 where he won in straight sets. His sole loss to Federer was back in 2005 in Bangkok.

Given that Murray has experience beating Federer on hardcourt, and the unbelievable form he's shown against Wawrinka, Del Potro and Rafa, I think he has a huge chance of becoming the first Brit to lift the US Open men's singles trophy since Fred Perry did in 1936.

Either way am sure it's gonna be an interesting match. The final is scheduled to take place at 5pm US Eastern Time (11pm Cairo Local Time).

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