ibnlive » Tennis

Aug 31, 2011 at 01:09pm IST

US Open: Can Somdev knock over Andy Murray?

New Delhi: Crushing the title hopes of one of the pre-tournament favourites might be asking for too much from India's very own Somdev Devvarman, but then it's not beyond the realm of possibility to expect such a giant killing act from a player who has had consistent results going his way in the last twelve months.

The injury to Novak Djokovic and the rather indifferent form of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer has led some to believe that it's Andy Murray's title for the taking.

From Somdev's point of view the task that Murray is confronted with probably fits in perfectly into the scheme of things.

US Open: Can Somdev knock over Andy Murray?

India's Somdev Devvarman takes on world number four Andy Murray in the first round on Wednesday.

While all the pressure is on the Brit to provide his country with a grand slam winner, the unheralded Indian has absolutely nothing to lose except an opportunity to knock over a much fancied opponent.

Another factor that could well work in favour of the Indian number one is that Murray has not yet had a shot at the Commonwealth and Asian Games gold medallist.

It could be a win win situation for Somdev who is not expected to pose a genuine threat for the British number one. Murray making heavy weather out of his first round encounter could play into the hands of his lower ranked competitor; on the other hand if the number four seed perceives the Indian as a tricky customer then that too cannot be viewed as an ideal scenario.

Even if it's a case of nit picking against Murray, one has to keep in mind that Somdev's counter punching style of play will not allow the Scotsman easy points.

The Indian will not exactly go for outright winners, forcing Murray to hit an extra ball to end the point.

Somdev is always up for a scrap, he is not one to throw in the towel irrespective of the match situation. Murray a fighter himself is not always the man for a crisis even though he is a brilliant front runner.

Like the Scotsman, the landmark wins of Somdev have been on hard courts, so an eternal optimist might see that as the perfect script for a fairytale result for the Indian.

Apart from bringing glory to his country, the Indian Davis Cupper has also had wins over more accomplished players like Marcos Baghdatis and Xavier Malisse on the ATP circuit, so he has rubbed shoulders with men in the big league.

There could be no bigger stage for Somdev to raise his game, and it remains to be seen whether it’s just about giving Murray a run for his money or dash all British hopes of a grand slam victory.

One thing is for sure, Somdev Devvarman is going to be no pushover for Andy Murray and those who think otherwise can do so at their own peril.