Predictions from the newsdesk

By for MurraysWorld.com on
With less than eight hours to go before Andy Murray contests his fifth grand slam final, some of our venerable and distinguished news team members have offered their hands, at predicting what will transpire tonight at Flushing Meadows.

Nigel Graber

Andy Murray has stared down the barrel of defeat against Marin Cilic in this year’s US Open. He’s also opened up and offered young gun Milos Raonic both barrels in a frighteningly impressive fourth-rounder. He’s wrestled with wind and blown away a major nemesis in Tomas Berdych.

The one common factor in all his matches has been the result. More than ever, when the fates were conspiring against him, Andy Murray has figured out how to win. In the process, he’s shown us endless heart, art and strategy. He’ll need all of that and more to overturn a resurgent Djokovic tonight. But, with Lendl in his corner, I expect him to do it – in a match that I predict will mark the true beginning of the Murray-Djokovic dynasty.

Murray in 4 sets


Phil Messenger

Murray is guaranteed a record tonight: either the first British Male to win a Slam in the Open era, or the second player to lose five consecutive slam finals. It would be fitting for the Scot to break his slam duck as Flushing Meadows, where he played his first final four years ago.

It won't be easy. Novak Djokovic has quite hit the stratospheric heights of last year but has still cruised his way to the final with the loss of only one set. Murray's own performances have been patchy, ranging from the sublime (against Raonic) to the ridiculous (against Dodig) to downright worrying (against Lopez).

It's possible these struggles will have battled hardened the Scot. His resiliency has been impressive throughout the tournament and he is playing with a confidence that shows he truly believes he belongs at the very top of the game. Much will hinge on the Scot's first serve percentage (has to be over 60%) and his willingness to commit to his forehand.

Murray in 5 sets

Andrew Hunter

Both men absolutely deserve their place in the final, firstly. Djokovic blitzed through to the semis with alarming ease, and in calmer conditions against Ferrer, he looked imperious. I personally don’t think he’s faced a true battle yet, which may hinder him tonight if the going gets tough.

The same can’t be said for Murray. Tight four set encounters against Lopez, Cilic and Berdych have tested his mental strength and resolve, and whilst I think he played more impressive tennis at Wimbledon, I am more confident approaching this final than the last one at SW19.

Like Andrew Castle and Barry Cowan, I’ve never competed in a grand slam final. It’s therefore hard for me to advocate any sort of tactical guide. However, if you watch the Australian Open 2012 encounter between these two, Murray’s forehand was excellent, and it dragged Djokovic out of position so many times, setting up a backhand winner crosscourt, or extracting the error from the Serb. Aggressive forehand and healthy first serve percentage are absolutely vital if the ghost of Fred Perry is to be exorcised tonight. If he stays calm at the big moments of the match, I think he'll emerge victorious.

Murray in 4 sets

Luke Sefton

Andy Murray will be looking to emulate his coach Ivan Lendl and win his first Major at the fifth attempt. He's been here four times before, but this time is different. This time he has an Olympic gold medal. This time he has the confidence and the memory of having beaten both Djokovic and Federer in straight sets without even dropping serve in a major competition. This time he is ready, ready to take on his old friend and maybe go one further than before and win that elusive holy grail.

There has been some contrast in each players' run to the final. Murray has come through three tough matches, dropping a set in each, whilst Djokovic has dropped just the one set - in the horrific conditions of 'Super' Saturday. Djokovic has breezed through with little challenge and some impressive performances. But Murray has reached the final in perhaps a more impressive fashion. He has shown heart, courage and a vastly improve mental fortitude that has proved perhaps frail in the past. Winning all five tie-breaks he’s played this tournament goes some way to show that.

Matches between Murray and Djokovic are normally very unpredictable, and by definition, it’s hard to say just which way this one will go (although I will attempt to anyway!). But one thing is for sure – it’s going to be a high quality final with lots of breath-taking winners and plenty of tense moments. But there seems to be a greater air of optimism around the Murray camp this time. He’s stronger than he’s ever been, both physically and mentally. He’s ready.

Murray in 5 sets
add comment | 23 comments

Add Comment

Name:
Comment
Enter code:
Add


You're all wrong - it's going to be straight sets Olympic style shades
September 10, 2012, 02:46 PM
By Mark

Well, I am not qualified to talk about the technical aspects of the game, my expertise is the mental side. Like all the above have stated, Andy has had a far tougher route mentally to this final and this will definitely give him an edge over Nole. Andy has shown us that when he was required to dig deep mentally he did so time and time again, showing astute resilience and resolve. These two elements of his newly fashioned game will serve him well tonight. Like Luke Sefton comments "He’s stronger than he’s ever been, both physically and mentally. He’s ready".
September 10, 2012, 02:51 PM
By psychological tennis

Thanks for all the predictions, which are very much appreciated.  Top prize goes to the ever optimistic Phil for this comment - lol

"Murray is guaranteed a record tonight: either the first British Male to win a Slam in the Open era, or the second player to lose five consecutive slam finals."


Seriously though, like PT, I go along with what has been said about the improvement Andy has shown mentally recently, and in the run-up to the final in particular.  There's no doubt that he's gained strength and self-belief from the massive support he got after his hugely disappointing Wimbledon loss and his emotional reaction to it, something which I believe spurred him on to win Olympic gold - and that in itself is what I am sure he will be looking to build on today.  I too can only reiterate Luke's comments and keep my fingers crossed -

Matches between Murray and Djokovic are normally very unpredictable, and by definition, it’s hard to say just which way this one will go ... But one thing is for sure – it’s going to be a high quality final with lots of breath-taking winners and plenty of tense moments. But there seems to be a greater air of optimism around the Murray camp this time. He’s stronger than he’s ever been, both physically and mentally. He’s ready.
 
September 10, 2012, 03:40 PM
By Aileen

Thanks for your interesting predictions, News Team. I appreciate all the work you put in here, and it's been a treat to have discovered MW and hang out with you.

Like all of you, I've followed Andy's progress since the beginning. It's been a journey of incredible highs and devastating lows, but I can honestly say that in all these years, this is the first time I am fully confident in his abilities to take the big prize. His talent, passion, and work ethic have never been in question. His attention to detail was insane, studying hours upon hours of video footage of other players, probably leading to overload.
I noticed the beginning of a change last year when he came to Montreal and completely bombed against Kevin Anderson. He'd done his usual hot and heavy training in Miami, and seemed completely confounded as to why his feet failed to comply. I thought then, that it was going to be another crushing slump period, and was frankly worried about how he would cope with putting all the pain in for no gain. Then he turned the whole thing around at Cincy, and my hopes were risen again for the USO. That SF match with Nadal was one of the most painful for me to watch, but I also think this was the catalyst for the changes he realised he had to make, and he said he sat down with his team to decide what to do.
This was when it all started being serious. No more twitter, and we all know about the Asian swing. Then, the final piece of the jigsaw.. he conceded he needed a coach.
Darren Cahill has been a tremendous mentor and P/T coach to Andy, and thankfully was instrumental in getting Andy and Lendl together. Here is a man who needs no introduction to the tennis world, and someone who is taken seriously. Even by Andy.
They both appear to give each other just the right amount of space, respect, and humour. From where I'm standing, it seems to work.
I see changes in his forehand, his serve percentage, but most of all I see a change in Andy's self-belief. I've been mightily impressed by his courage and tenacity when up against the ropes. He now seems to have found that extra few percent and extra gear he's been searching and working so hard for.

I remember Lendl saying this in an interview at AO this year: "..when the door is open you just step through it, but you have to be ready to step through it."
I have no doubt Andy is ready to step through the door.

I've never predicted a Murray match until now. I predict a win for Andy, no matter how many sets.

I'm glad he had a tough draw, I'm glad he had brutal weather, and I'm glad he faces Nole in the final.. because when he lifts that trophy, no-one can say he didn't earn it.
September 10, 2012, 04:14 PM
By scotnadian



I'm glad he had a tough draw, I'm glad he had brutal weather, and I'm glad he faces Nole in the final.. because when he lifts that trophy, no-one can say he didn't earn it.


Absolutely. Absolutely!!
September 10, 2012, 04:27 PM
By psychological tennis

May I add my tuppence worth?

When Andy played his first GM in USO 2008, he had to play two matches over three days owing to the weather. Two days to defeat Nadal in the semi-final and one day in the final. Federer on the other hand had two days of rest prior to the final. Consequently, by the time AM reached the Monday(?) for the final, he could not have been at his best and Federer was able to romp home.

The current situation is a reverse of 2008. An omen?
September 10, 2012, 04:33 PM
By OldScotSupport

Who's on hourly edit duty for the 1st sentence? Very Happy
September 10, 2012, 04:39 PM
By scotnadian

Joker playing yesterday will have no effect at all.  If it had been 4 hours instead then maybe.

If Andy plays at the Olympics level he'll win.  Andy at his best is a better player than Joker - in fact he's the best in the world but until this year hasn't played at his absolute best level as often as the other top guys....until tonight hopefully.

If he wins tonight I can see him getting another 7 Slams in the next 3 or 4 years, just like Mr Lendl.
September 10, 2012, 05:43 PM
By Mackem

Andy to win.  7-6 6-4 4-6 6-4
September 10, 2012, 05:46 PM
By backhandslice

Thanks for all your predictions im going for Andy in 4 sets.As i think its his time and hes ready for this.
September 10, 2012, 06:26 PM
By caroline

add comment | 23 comments