The US Open starts August 27 and is sure to be an action packed showing by a strong field of American players. Both the men and women have contenders. US Open champions Serena Williams and Andy Roddick will be in action and vying for the coveted US Open trophy along with an up and coming group of young American players. Flushing Meadows is one of the most exciting venues to watch the best tennis players under the bright lights of NYC.
1. Serena Williams is currently #6 in the world. She is the three time champion of the US Open and when she is playing at her best, let’s just say look out. Serena is a proven champion and a heavy favorite for this year’s title. If she can “keep her cool” and let herself play aggressive tennis, then the US Open title is within reach.
2. John Isner is a top 10 powerhouse. This big serving American stands at 6’9” and weighs in at 245 lbs. His one-two punch consisting of his booming serve and crippling forehand is among one of the best first strike combinations in the game. This Georgia Bulldog is going to be the most dangerous man in the draw outside of the elite top four consisting of Djokovic, Nadal, Federer, and Murray. Nobody wants to play big John for obvious reasons.
3. Mardy Fish is currently #12 and is coming back from a heart irregularity that required surgery. His best result was at the 2008 US Open where he made the quarterfinals before bowing out to Rafael Nadal. Fish’s aggressive game makes him a top pick going into the tournament. At this stage in his career, Fish is about winning and doing it efficiently.
4. Andy Roddick comes in at #25. His single grand slam victory came in 2003 at the US Open. If Roddick is going to go deep in the majors, it will be in front of the New York fans that carried him to his first grand slam victory. Roddick is no longer the young American that won that 2003 US Open over Juan Carlos Ferrero, but he still possesses his big serve and a wealth of knowledge that will carry him in 2012.
5. Christina Mchale is at #32 in the WTA rankings. This New Jersey native is the second ranked American and continues to climb in the rankings. She draws a large fan base from neighboring Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. She recently became a new selection to the U.S. Olympic team and has a bright future ahead of her.
6. Ryan Harrison is currently at his highest ranking at #48. This Southern California kid is only 20 years old and is already one of the most exciting young Americans in the draw. Harrison has had some tough match ups so far in the majors, but if he is going to move closer to the top 20, it is the US Open that will give him this opportunity. Harrison does a wonderful job of engaging the crowd and he is going to have to serve like a madman to knock off some of the top seeds.
7. Donald Young is currently just outside the top 50 coming in at #51. This young lefty from Chicago had a breakthrough at the 2011 US Open beating #24 Stanislas Wawrinka and a former top 20 player in Juan Ignacio Chela. It is time to see if his continued training will translate into another memorable US Open. Young will be wearing his hat sideways, pull off some flashy shots, and be more motivated than ever to follow up on his 2011 success.
8. Sloane Stephens is #59 in the world. The athletic Sloane Stephens is a threat to the top women this US Open as she already made it to the fourth round of the 2012 French Open. Sloane has a game that is very flat and can hit her opponents off the court. She is a humble nineteen year old who has the maturity of a veteran player on tour.
9. Brian Baker sits at #126 in the world and he scratched and clawed to get there. This American has been plagued by injuries and is only now really starting to improve his ranking and soon should be in the top 100. Baker played with the likes of Djokovic in the junior tournaments, but could not sustain his stellar junior career due to a host of injuries. Baker’s injuries have subsided at twenty-seven and he is playing loose, relaxed, and confident.
10. Sam Querrey is #64. He is on the come back trail from elbow surgery. Querrey just picked up a big win over Canada’s Milos Raonic, ranked #22, at Wimbledon before a grueling five and a half hour loss to Marin Cilic in the fourth round. The good news is Querrey is playing well and in a perfect spot with his game.
There are a group of young Americans that are showing to have a bright future like John Isner and Christina Mchale. Veterans such as Serina Williams, Mardy Fish, and Andy Roddick are also going to be a significant factor in the 2012 US Open.