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‘Djoker’ ready to show his mettle

Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer face a worrying power shortage, but Andy Murray doesn't expect injury and faltering form to dim tennis' brightest lights at the US Open.

sports Updated: Aug 29, 2011 14:06 IST
Agencies

Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer face a worrying power shortage, but Andy Murray doesn't expect injury and faltering form to dim tennis' brightest lights at the US Open.

World No. 1 Djokovic, the hottest player in 2011 with a 57-2 winning record, was forced to quit the Cincinnati Masters final against Murray when his weary right shoulder betrayed him.

Defending US Open champion Nadal, who completed the career Grand Slam with his victory in 2010, has endured a torrid summer since capturing a record-equalling French Open in June.

Federer, meanwhile, is without a major since extending his record Grand Slam collection to 16 at the 2010 Australian Open.

Certainly world number four Murray scoffed at suggestions they were particularly vulnerable.

Meanwhile, Serena Williams returns to the scene of her first Grand Slam triumph seeking to seal her comeback from a frightening year by lifting a fourth US Open trophy.

The injury absence of two-time reigning champion Kim Clijsters along with the struggles of world number one Caroline Wozniacki put the spotlight firmly on Williams and another resurgent champion, Maria Sharapova.

Among the Indians, Somdev Devvarman and Sania Mirza will have a tough outing. Somdev has drawn Murray while Sania, Shahar Peer in the first round.

Hurricane Irene threatens US Open
The last-minute preparations for the US Open were aborted on Saturday as Flushing Meadows was shut down in anticipation of Hurricane Irene. Players were told to go and find alternative places to practice as officials took the unusual step of locking up the National Tennis Center. AP