A couple of winners plus a couple of major setbacks in the previous round. Our main hope Marin Cilic crashed out to Jack Sock who’s had the game to be a top-10 player but seldom looked like stringing enough results together to go deep in a major. Now, the American is in the mix in what looks an incredibly open top half of the draw.
Novak Djokovic has hardly had a match so far which could be a) good because his wrist needs rest or b) bad because he’s short on match practice. He now faces Kyle Edmund who scored the biggest win of his career against John Isner a couple of nights back.
The Yorkshireman insists he has learnt from his defeat to the world number one at Miami earlier this year and he can definitely put up a fight in the last 16. As in previous rounds, we will play Edmund to win a set and to win the match, and hope his fitness does not give out before the end of the first set.
Juan Martin del Potro has had an easy time of it so far but he should find life more difficult against Dominic Thiem. The Austrian may not be as strong on this surface as on clay but he’s definitely improving as the tournament goes on and I think he could push del Potro all the way here. With Nick Kyrgios retiring hurt due to the hip injury which he has had right from the start, we only have Gael Monfils left going for us outright. His last 16 clash with Marco Baghdatis should be entertaining but the Frenchman should have too many guns and put us one match away from collecting on him to win his quarter-final. Fingers crossed.
We came desperately close to a big win on Dominika Cibulkova against Lesia Tsurenko. The Slovak had a break point for 5-0 and two points to take the first set 6-1 but blew the lot. And then she crashed out in three. The Ukrainian now faces Roberta Vinci who is having another superb run at Flushing Meadows having gone all the way to the final 12 months ago. Tsurenko has been taking a while to get going this week while Vinci has started her matches quickly. I expect the Italian to win the first set comfortably before winning the match.
Johanna Konta is also having a good week and she can sweep aside Anastasija Sevastova to reach the quarter-finals. The Latvian is having her best major since returning from retirement but Konta’s power game should be far too much for her.
Simona Halep has Carla Suarez Navarro between her and a probable clash with Serena Williams. With the pressure off, I would fancy the Romanian to give the world number one a match but this is just the sort of match that gives her trouble in majors. At the prices, I feel compelled to have a small play on the Spaniard.