Monday, January 9, 2012

What's Ahead

A little later than planned, here's my preview. About what's ahead for David (and for us):

(Getty Images)
Australian Open draw
The draw ceremony for the first Slam of the season will take place on Friday, at 10am local time (that's Thursday, 11pm GMT/6pm EST/8pm Argentina). Usually, it's possible to listen to the ceremony live on AO Radio, via the tournament website.
And in Melbourne they're normally pretty quick when it comes to posting the draw online.
For David, the draw (and hopefully a bit of luck with it) will be crucial. As he won't be seeded, anything is possible for him, from the first round on. From a match against a qualifier or wildcard to facing Novak Djokovic or any other of the top players. Here's hoping that David will get lucky with the draw, this time.

Also on Friday, David will play his exhibition match against Andy Murray at Kooyong, scheduled to begin at 4.30pm local (5.30am GMT/12.30am EST/2.30am Argentina).
While going to Kooyong for one specific match is new for David, taking part in the event used to be his standard way of beginning the season. From 2004 to 2007 David played the event every year (2008 he was forced to withdraw at the last minute). Making this his altogether fifth appearance at Kooyong Stadium in Melbourne, formerly the venue of the Australian Open (until 1988). For the main event, there's usually a stream. However, extra matches, like David's against Murray, were not streamed in the past. Whether that's going to be different this time - we'll find out.

For the moment, i.e. this week, David's ranking remains to be #64. Next Monday however, David will drop his points for making the final at Auckland last year and that will see him lose some ground in the rankings. The good news in this context being that he won't have a lot of points to defend at the Australian Open and also not in the weeks to come. Still, trying to get up his ranking again will be an important goal during the coming weeks and months. And it's probably one of the reasons behind David's fairly ambitious schedule.

A new kind of schedule & tournament
Directly after the Davis Cup first-round tie against Germany it'll be time for a premiere - something new and unprecendented, in a variety of ways. For the first time in his career, David is planning to play an ATP tournament directly after Davis Cup. An event he has never played before and which has been moved to a new location this year - Sao Paolo (formerly known as Costa do Sauipe). But what really makes the Brasil Open 2012 unusual are the conditions in which the tournament will be played. On clay - but indoors. In Davis Cup, this kind of scenario is not unheard of (see Bamberg). But playing an ATP event indoors on clay
- that's going to be a first for David.


  1. fingers crossed for a stream this Friday!!! :)

    and fingers crossed for the AO draw. An unknown qualifier can be unpredictable for David. Any seeded played, too dangerous. This draw is tricky.

    so David will have to travel to Brazil right after the DC weekend... sounds exhausting :(

  2. Well, he really needs points. And the organisers really wanted him for the event and I'm sure they'll do everything to schedule his match as late as possible - if he's able to play. Which is of course another uncertainty.