ATP Memphis 2013 Draw Preview and Analysis

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For full draw, please click here: ATP Memphis 2013 Draw

The last U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships is one of three tournaments coming up this week. The ATP 500 event on indoor hard courts is being played in Memphis one more time before the tournament moves to Brazil due to the sale of the licence for 2014. Three of the past four years saw home players take the title, with recently retired Andy Roddick winning two and Sam Querrey the other while Jurgen Melzer shocked Milos Raonic in last year’s final.

In a tie that ensures a Croatian in round two, top seed Marin Cilic will play Ivan Dodig in the first round. Dodig actually won their last meeting in Valencia last year, where he was a shock semi finalist in Spain. Despite that, it would be a surprise to see Dodig come out on top given Cilic’s recent form that saw him pick up the Zagreb title once more. If Cilic wants to take a second title in three weeks he will have to get past the defending champion Jurgen Melzer who hasn’t been dealt the greatest of draws. Melzer takes on the promising Dutchman Igor Sijsling, fresh off defeating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga last week, and then most likely Cilic whom he took just four games from in the aforementioned Zagreb final. Xavier Malisse and Kei Nishikori open against a qualifiers for the opportunity to play each other. Nishikori is still to play since his Australian Open fourth round loss against David Ferrer and could be suffering from a lack of match fitness after struggling with a knee injury for much of the year to date.

US hopes will mostly lie with Sam Querrey who is number four seed here. Despite making the semi final in San Jose, it was hardly the most convincing performance from the tall American who needed three sets to get past Lleyton Hewitt and Alejandro Falla before losing heavily to Milos Raonic. Querrey faces Falla once more in the first round, hoping to extend his winning run over the Colombian to four matches. A second round against either Go Soeda or a horribly out of form Marinko Matosevic should not pose much of an issue but expect Alexandr Dolgopolov to go well if he can make out the first round against Bjorn Phau. The Ukranian can be incredibly frustrating at times but has the talent to make the final here. He has a 2-1 record over Querrey and lost in a third set tie break in the match he was defeated in. Wildcard Steve Johnson will be a nice draw for a qualifier that could include Ivo Karlovic, Donald Young or Rhyne Williams.

After losing in the first round in San Jose, Fernando Verdasco will be desperate for a decent run here and begins against a qualifier. Ryan Harrison, who was disappointing against Benjamin Becker in the same tournament, or Lukasz Kubot await in the second round for what is a kind draw for the Spaniard. In the same quarter is the struggling John Isner, who was outplayed by Tommy Haas in the semi final of San Jose. A tricky first round against Denis Istomin awaits – the Uzbek has always played well on American indoor hard courts with decent runs in San Jose the past two years. Lleyton Hewitt was close to knocking off Sam Querrey in San Jose and qualifies of his own accord for this tournament after numerous wildcards for tournaments in the past year. Yen Hsun-Lu will be his first round opponent.

A repeat of the San Jose final looks on the cards in the final section of the draw if seedings go to plan in the quarter finals. Milos Raonic was a losing finalist here last year but there looks little chance that wildcard Jack Sock will trouble him in the first round while a second wildcard in James Blake is good for a show but at this stage of his career it will be incredibly difficult for him to pull off a shock if even gets past Florian Mayer. Mayer has started the year of poorly and didn’t even trouble Nikolay Davydenko in Rotterdam, losing 6-3 6-2. Even at the age of 34, Tommy Haas is playing top class tennis and looks a lock to meet Raonic barring a disaster. Evgeny Donskoy disappointed in San Jose, losing in straights to another Canadian in Vasek Pospisil while Feliciano Lopez hasn’t played since flopping early at the Australian Open. Benjamin Becker lost to Lopez in their last meeting although he may have a shot given Lopez’s lack of matches recently.

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