It would be nice to say something profound for the final major of the year; however, I will have to keep it simple. The 2019 men’s champion likely will come from a player in the top four. Despite his recent loss to Daniil Medvedev, I think that Novak Djokovic is the player to beat. Rafael Nadal, as much as I would love to see him win another title in New York, is struggling with his knees and the five set matches of the majors put a lot more stress on his knees even with the day off in between. Dominic Thiem has yet to convince me that he can be as dominant on the hard court as he is on clay. I think Roger Federer could get to the final; however, he may have to get by Djokovic, which may be a tad too difficult for him at this stage in his career.
Where will the challenge come from amongst the remaining men in the draw?
Has Medvedev Recovered?
Medvedev is one of the players that I feel is ready to step up and challenge the top four; however, he has played an awful lot of tennis lately and fatigue may come back to hurt him at this tournament. If he has recovered, and I see no reason why he should not be-he is young, I would keep an eye on him.
Can Zverev Recapture His Form?
Alexander Zverev started off his career brilliantly and I would have bet money, if I was a person who gambled, that Zverev would have been a legitimate threat by now to win his first major title here. However, the young German has fallen on some hard times, a lot of which may be mental; yet, there are rumors that he may be spending too much time with the wrong crowd. It will be a pity if the rumors are true.
Will One Of The Veterans Step Up?
Kevin Anderson is struggling with right knee issues, so not liking his chances of doing much. Stan Wawrinka may be back, but is he ready to grind out five sets in the heat and humidity of New York?
Marin Cilic and Kei Nishikori, who are familiar with going deep in the draw, are not playing with much confidence, in part because their bodies have failed them too frequently recently, but this is a major, so perhaps they can pull a rabbit out of the hat.
Is Felix Ready?
Can any player outside the top ten surprise us and get to the final? Sure, but I am just not seeing it. Too many of these players are not playing consistently good tennis and to win a major, you must play consistently good-to-great tennis for seven matches.
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