US Open Semifinals Beanalysis
Khachanov vs. Ruud
“Help me Casper Ruud, you’re my only hope.” Casper Ruud is one of two hopes technically. Whatever. So… Karen. We need to have a talk. You have ruined 2 incredible rival matchups. Kyrgios vs. PCB, and then Kyrgios vs. Ruud. Though I’m not happy about these actions. I’m stunned at your level of play. Beating the Montreal winner in 5, and then turning right around and taking out a ripping hot Kyrgios in 5 as well. This may come into play during the match because if it goes long whatsoever, Khachanov may lose to fatigue. Nick’s serve and volley game was amazing for the first set, and he seemed to be looking at a tiebreaker, but then he just gave up on break point. I haven’t the slightest what happened there. But then he came out and played amazing again for set two? What is this trickery? This whole match seemed to be a pendulum of momentum, and it just happened to end on Khachanov. He’s been playing incredible this week, and has surprised people all around. This is the Khachanov that won the Paris masters. His ability to serve on those important points was stunning. But I’m more impressed with his staying power. Congratulations Khachanov.
I AM ONCE AGAIN ASKING FOR YOU TO TAKE THOSE RUUDBUCKS! Casper Ruud has been “Muy Caliente!” this week. He beat Berrettini, who has had an incredible week already this week, and he did it in 3 sets! What even. Ruud has looked in form all tournament and his first set against Berrettini just proved it. He played hard baseline shots, and Berrettini just could not adapt. I noticed especially that Matteo played bad shots on the important points. His serve was on fire, though. Also, looking at Ruud’s forehand, is that a hint of Rafa’s forehand I see? But also, looking at his wind up for the swing, it looks so drawn out, and that might just be a fear tactic. I know if I was looking at that wind up from the opposite side of the court, I’d expect a searing 150 mph ball coming right at me, and then I’d freeze up. I also noticed a pattern from Ruud, and that was attack Matteo’s backhand, and then come up to the net and finish, which is the best route to go, because Berrettini has a weak backhand. So, overall great match, and I think Ruud played incredibly.
Ruud has many, many advantages here. He’s got the intelligence, the better forehand, less fatigue, and a better shirt. Not that the shirt matters or anything. It’s just true though. I just don’t have it in me to say Khachanov can win this match. Every sign is yelling at me, RUUDBUCKS!!!!!! But like I have said in a previous writeup, it’s best to not underestimate Karen Khachanov. I’m gonna do it, for you guys though. Ruud in 3
Alcaraz vs. Tiafoe
People, I’m just gonna say it. I missed this one, so I had to watch some bootleg extended highlights to analyze it. I know, heckle me all you want, post it on social media. I was busy, ok? Whatever, any publicity is good publicity. So first of all, YES CARLOS! Ugh, I’m actually kind of mad I missed it, looking at the highlights now. Carlos came out guns ablazing, breaking Sinner immediately. Sinner did break back quick enough though, and then another break and break back took set one to a tiebreaker. And let me be the one to tell you, this right here, has got to be one of, if not the best match at the US Open this year. (At least, based on the highlights) The winners were insane, the shotmaking was precise as I’ve seen, the serves were on point, it was all there. I loved all of those highlights. Maybe the rest of the match was bad, but I doubt it. Alcaraz was right on the same level as Sinner, and it was pure grit and determination that won him the match in the 5th. His only huge disadvantage it seems is his fatigue from two 5 set matches in a row. His forehand is still striking perfectly, his serve is just as good as it was in the Miami final this year, and he’s looking just amazing in general. I honestly like his chances to win the tournament.
France 1 and France 2, a.k.a Frances… What? You didn’t know Tiafoe was 2 people named France inhabiting one body? Come on, do some research or something. This should be common knowledge by now. Anyway, Frances was unsurprisingly the winner of his match with Rublev. He was just looking better in most categories, and he just beat Rafa for crying out loud. Also, Rublev’s poor performance at previous slam QFs (0-5 W-L ratio) should’ve been a hint. So, Tiafoe has been… well he’s… I can’t seem to describe why he’s winning, it’s just that he is. He doesn’t have that one thing he just shows everyone up with, he is just winning. But hey, if that works, it works. He is a solid player, and that definitely gets him far, but he isn’t one of those guys that has a flashy game that attracts eyes. He just wins. But that’s a good thing sometimes to have a consistent player. I really liked this match and I wish I could’ve seen more from Rublev here, but hey, to the victor goes the spoils, and the fan shall get none. I made that last part up, but you get the idea.
So. In conclusion, I think Alcaraz has all the tools to make his first slam final here at the US Open, but will his fatigue, along with Tiafoe just, winning end that possibility? I think it is possible, but I feel like Alcaraz’s better playing will get him the win. I’m leaning Alcaraz in 4.619 sets because I can’t decide on 4 or 5, but I’m leaning more towards 5.