Friday, October 21, 2011

Stockholm QF - David vs James Blake

(Getty Images; montage by VD)
















Update
David has withdrawn from his match against James Blake due to an injury (thanks, Denise).
This has also been confirmed via the tournament site's Twitter.
Edit: A strained left hamstring, suffered during yesterday's match against Dodig is the reason for David's withdrawal.
Edit: David has also pulled out of St. Petersburg. Instead he'll travel to Barcelona to see his doctor Angel Ruiz-Cotorro (source: Clarin).



The last time David and James Blake met, in the second round at Washington in August, it was the meeting of two former champions at that particular event. Today, two and a half months later, the same can be said about their quarterfinal encounter at Stockholm: David won the title in 2008, Blake in 2005 and 2006.

James Blake, ranked #69 this week, took a bit of a break after the US Open (where he went out in the second round against David Ferrer) and he has played only one tournament since then, the Sacramento Challenger, where he lost in the final to Ivo Karlovic. Still, he has had two pretty straightforward wins this week, against Olivier Rochus and also against Juan Martin Del Potro, preventing the duel of the Davis Cup teammates.

David has played two matches against James Blake so far (Shanghai Masters Cup 2006 and Washington this year) and he lost both rather comfortably, never getting close to taking as much as a set. With Blake successfully attacking David's second serve and more often than not dictating the rallies with his forehand. Therefore, David will have to serve well again today to keep Blake from breaking him as regularly as he did in their previous matches. And he'll also have to be ready for more speed and firepower during the rallies.

In other news: As usual, David will finish his season at the Copa Argentina exhibition at the Buenos Aires Lawn Tenis Club (December 15-18). The two other players confirmed for the event so far are Feliciano Lopez and - James Blake.

45 comments:

  1. I didn't see the Blake/Del Potro match so I can't wait to watch Blake, it's been a while...
    so he will come to Buenos Aires for the Copa Argentina? Kind of surprising for an American, no?
    :)

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  2. He already played it last year. Mardy Fish was there too. ;)

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  3. Mira, unlike you, i watched the entire Delpo-blake match, Blake was impressive in all departments. His backhand was working superbly both cross court and DDl.David must be focused from tsart to finish to pull off a win

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  4. Blake was very good,really looked like his old self.

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  5. The current version of Blake is all about being in the zone. If he's in the zone, look out. If he's not, he can spray the ball all over the place. He doesn't really have a Plan B if his game is off. He's definitely not a grinder. A lot depends on which Blake shows up today.

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  6. thank you guys.
    Blake is definitely the type of player who can be in the zone for like a whole week...
    Really hope David won't lose his serve right away!

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  7. Blake played his very best against Delpo....as he did to Fed in Beijing Olympics...David should well from the 1st point...& make blake to unsettle...

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  8. Very bad news: David is injured and cannot play. Don't know any details yet ....

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  9. Oh no...
    Tell us as soon as you hear anything more, okay?

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  10. just read this from the tournament's twitter account :

    http://twitter.com/#!/IfSthlmOpen/status/127418249343275009

    @nalbandiandavid is out due to injury. James Blake will face Jarkko Nieminen tomorrow.

    no more details yet :(

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  11. What? Really? Please provide more details when they are available. This is a strange turn of events.

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  12. Every time things start to go well,those stupid injuries come into play,no luck at all.

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  13. that is just unbelievable
    or he is losing without any rhythem or he is injured
    its sad very sad
    he cant continue like this

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  14. You've got to be joking. I don't know how many times now we've been shocked by these unknown injuries. Unbelievable!

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  15. First thing I'm hearing now is problems with his left hamstring, out for ten days, which would also mean no St. Petersburg.
    But nothing official yet.

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  16. Just found something on twitter.Its the hamstring,not too serious,10 days off.I hope thats true.

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  17. oh no :(
    probably the result of the 1st round in 3 sets... or the accumulation of the last matches...

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  18. David is playing right now!
    Hey, wake up!

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  19. Geez, and yesterday was an easy match. No stress or strain. Wonder if he did it in the Malisse match?

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  20. You got to be kidding me. waiting for this match for 20 hours, then i sit to watch blake playing dewarman in an exhibition. am tellin my dad this is not damn david. until i saw the great news here. just when things start to work 4 him.awesome

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  21. yes, I saw already, why???? Then Blake had to have a bye at that round, why is he playing that round??? But the scores still show Nalbandian, but when I saw the cup and the movements I was not sure that it was David.
    I can't believe it, yesterday he played one of his best matches and today he is injured :'(

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  22. So thats it for this season more or less

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  23. I think it's a shock for us because he played so well yesterday, looked so fit, accuracy on top...
    David must be as disappointed as us right now!!!

    it took me a minute to figure out who the heck is playing vs. Blake right now, okay Devvarman...

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  24. I think hell play in Valencia.Actually reading hes about to skip St Petersburg and travel too Spain but its not serious.I guess he doesnt want to even take any chances because of DC,if he even feels a little tingle he will take it safe.

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  25. please Nalbi come back I want to cry like a baby

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  26. he wouldve probably won the title if he continued to play. and now no russia as well, GOD be with u david, i do not know how can u take this anymore.the season is over, even if he plays valencia, will probably lose in the 1st round, not wanting to push things much for DC.uffffffff

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  27. same feelings right now Noubar :(
    I might start to believe in Argentina's ability to challenge Spaniards for DC final after all.. (why not???)

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  28. Being realistic the whole season after he came back from the surgery was about DC and the whole season will be measured by what happens in Sevilla.If they pull of the miracle it will probably be even bigger to him than winning the WTF in 05'.DC is the most important thing,St Petersburg is not important,good move to pull out imo even if he felt the slightest tingle.

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  29. Yeah, it is all about DC and you'd expect him to be extra careful because of it. Still, it's the travelling to Barcelona part that I don't like about this...

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  30. I hope there just thinking Barcelona is on the way to Valencia.I just think things like this are gonna happen every 2 months in 2012,I mean those are normal sport injuries.If hes really careful and keeps these injuries to like 1-2 week pauses everythings gonna be ok,just hope no further surgeries and stuff like that.

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  31. Well, if it goes on like that the question is how much longer until he has enough?

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  32. Come on .I think he should just play and forget about what those doctores say.It is profesional sport everybody has pain and injuries all the time.it cant go like this. he played wonderful tennis against dodig!

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  33. 1 week injuries every 2 months dont make you want to retire,stuff like that happens all the time.The stuff that destroys you is when you miss months like David did this year.

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  34. I don't think it's fun or easy to have those pauses all the time, always having to start again, never getting much rhythm. And that includes the shorter pauses. The frequency is the problem.

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  35. I play sports on a semi serious time(basketball) and I can tell you,theres not one practice where you are 100%,somethings always on you,1 week here and there your out and believe me it doesnt hurt you or your form.No ones always healthy,good scheduling and a easy schedule should do the trick.

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  36. Yeah, and team is one of the big differences here. ;)

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  37. Ya true,but my point is that fitness is a subjective thing.Know some guys who play with broken fingers,know some guys who have a little bruise and pause for a week.Ive broke ligaments on my ankles about 4-5 times...on each leg,it sucks,but it happens.My poitn being everyone in sports has a banged up body.I personally think he doesnt feel that much different than in any match,maybe a little worse and he just doesnt wanna fool around with DC final.

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  38. It's his left leg again. That doesn't bode well. But we'll see what the tests and Dr. Ruiz-Cotorro will say.

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  39. So what do you think the chances of Valencia are?

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  40. Hope for the best,prepare for the worst.

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