Previewing the American players' prospects for the U.S. Open, which begins next Monday:
She'll have the last laugh in the end, a familiar stance for Serena, and it's hard to believe her injury (a swollen right big toe) will be a significant factor in New York with the benefit of off-days between matches. It was probably smart for her to take a break and charge into the Open completely fresh.
She has already re-established her dominance, winning convincingly at Stanford and Toronto, and now it's time for the real thing. I just can't see anyone staring her down, especially those at the top of the rankings: Caroline Wozniacki, Vera Zvonareva, Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka. They don't have the game
Fish isn't all that thrilled with the distinction. He always trumpeted his good friend Roddick as the best, in both game and reputation, and he meant every word. "This is new for me," he said after losing the Montreal final to Novak Djokovic. "It's not a place I feel extremely comfortable in. It's very different. It's much harder to play when you're supposed to win."
Make no mistake, the 29-year-old Fish is playing fabulous all-court tennis, he's playing it smart this week (taking a much-needed break), and he wants that first career major. "I want it so badly, it hurts," he said. He took another massive stride by defeating Rafael Nadal at Cincinnati, but that was a noticeably tired and injured (burned fingers) Nadal, who had spent nearly five hours on court playing singles and doubles the previous day. I'm not sure that Fish, who has never been to a Slam semifinal, believes he can crack the Djokovic-Roger Federer-Nadal stronghold in any major. If he's ever going to spend some time on the throne, this is it.
(There are other American prospects in the women's draw, including Vania King, Sloane Stephens, Coco Vandeweghe and Lauren Davis, but it's a collective non-story until one of them truly steps to the front.)