The round of 16 at the 2012 US does not feature many players that you don't expect to be there. Federer and Djokovic have been untroubled. Del Potro, Murray, Ferrer, Berdych, Tipsarevic, and Almagro are there. Gasquet, Cilic, Wawrinka, Raonic, Klizan (who?), and the soon-to-be retiring Andy Roddick fill out the remaining players in the 4th round.
The only top seeded players that aren't there are #5 and #10 seeds, Tsonga and Monaco.
There are many exciting match-ups; some are predictable and some are not. Here are the previews for the eight contests that will determine the quarterfinal entrants:
(1) Roger Federer vs (23) Mardy Fish
Federer looks in great shape heading into the 2nd week. Fish is coming off a less-than-stellar performance against Gilles Simon, where he made 75 unforced errors, and he'll need to play near his best if he wants to give Roger any sort of scare. Roger was impressive in their last meeting in Cincinnati, and I expect the same kind of result here.
Federer in 3.
(2) Novak Djokovic vs (18) Stan Wawrinka
Djokovic has only lost 14 games in his first 9 sets of the tournament, and he is looking very good. Wawrinka is playing some of his best tennis as of late, coming off a semifinal showing in Cincinnati. On paper, Djokovic should win without much of a fuss, but you never know - Stan could give the Serb a tight set or two.
Djokovic in 3.
(3) Andy Murray vs (15) Milos Raonic
Raonic has a win against Andy this year, from the clay court season in Barcelona. He has the game to hurt Murray, and he should give the #3 seed a big run for his money. Murray struggled at times in his tight win against Lopez, and he'll need to be better if he wants to counter-attack the big Raonic serve and ground game.
My mind says Murray but my heart says Raonic.
Murray in 5.
(4) David Ferrer vs (13) Richard Gasquet
The ever-consistent Ferrer has looked rock solid through three rounds at the Open, only dropping one set. Gasquet has only dropped one set as well, in his first round. It should be a good match, but the crafty Spaniard should have all the tools to outlast the talented Frenchman.
Ferrer in 4.
(6) Tomas Berdych vs (11) Nicolas Almagro
These two have history this year, having met three times. Berdych won in Australia, Almagro got revenge at Indian Wells, and Tomas took the tiebreaking win in Rome. Both have played well to get to this point, but Berdych will be the fresher man, and he should pull through in a close, tough match.
Berdych in 5.
(7) Juan Martin del Potro vs (20) Andy Roddick
After wins over Tomic and Fognini, Roddick will have a much tougher opponent on his hands in the 2009 champion. The American can pull off the upset, of course, but it will be difficult, as Delpo has played good tennis so far. The crowd will need to help Andy and urge him on as he should be in an uphill battle right from the start.
Del Potro in 4.
(8) Janko Tipsarevic vs (9) John Isner or (19) Philipp Kohlschreiber
Tipsarevic has been in good form since his first round scare, where he went down two sets to none. Kohlschreiber is coming off two straight five-setters, including an upset over John Isner, so he could be spent. Take the #2 ranked Serb.
Tipsarevic in 3.
(12) Marin Cilic vs Martin Klizan
Klizan made it to the final 16 with impressive wins over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the #5 seed, and Jeremy Chardy, who took out Murray in Cincinnati. However, his run should come to an end here as Cilic has been in solid form thus far. The big Croat should overpower the Slovak native, and he should pick up the win.
Cilic in 3.
Here are some of the stats for all the players in the Round of 16. Some interesting numbers (well, interesting if you love stats like me; don't ask me why I love them, I don't know):
The legend goes winners-errors, then sets played in brackets, then aces-double faults.
Federer: 101-61 (9) 29-4
Djokovic: 102-38 (9) 26-4
Murray: 129-100 (10) 33-13
Ferrer: 97-80 (10) 22-15
Berdych: 116-88 (10) 40-6
Tipsarevic: 111-86 (11) 45-16
Del Potro: 111-82 (10) 30-15
Almagro: 159-124 (13) 59-18
Cilic: 142-147 (14) 36-16
Gasquet: 122-56 (11) 36-11
Raonic: 158-110 (11) 89-24
Wawrinka: 108-78 (12) 54-11
Fish: 154-164 (12) 44-9
Roddick: 109-65 (10) 43-4
Enjoy the Round of 16!