From the ATP web site.
2012 By The Numbers… Novak’s 5 M.P. Saved Tops List
First-Time ATP Winners
Only one player won his first ATP World Tour title in 2012, compared with 10 in 2011. As players competing for their first ATP World Tour title went 1-15 in finals this season, 23-year-old Martin Klizan was the only breakthrough, triumphing at the St. Petersburg Open with a straight-sets win over Fabio Fognini. He became the first Slovakian to win a tour title since Dominik Hrbaty triumphed at Marseille in February 2004.
It was a mark of how competitive the ATP World Tour was in 2012 that the longest winning streak any player was able to put together was Roger Federer’s run of 16 matches in February-March. In 2011, Novak Djokovic had opened with a staggering 41-0 mark, while a year earlier Nadal had compiled a 24-match winning run.
Winning Titles Without Losing A Set
Rafael Nadal reminded the tennis world of his clay-court supremacy in 2012, winning three titles at Monte-Carlo, Barcelona and Rome without the loss of a set. Novak Djokovic was also able to win an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title with a clean slate over six matches, retaining his title in Miami.
See the whole article – HERE
Following our recent look at this years potential breakthough stars we look at their chances in the Masters 1000 event at Indian Wells.
Richard Berankis is already through to the second round after coming back from losing the first set against Bogomolov Jr. With just 41% of first serves landing in it was the return game of Berankis which won him the match, breaking his opponent 4 times from 9 break points. He was broken 4 times himself though, including twice in the final set, and he will need to pick up his service stats if he is to go any further.
Next up lies a far greater challenge and with Fernando Verdasco across the net few will give the youngster a chance of progressing. The Spaniard lost to Milos Raonic in the San Jose final and again to him the following week in Memphis, before Bellucci made it 3 defeats in a row. A comfortable Davis Cup victory against Malisse followed and Verdasco showed some of his real ability in that match, so signs are that he’s starting to step up his game again.
As much as I would like to see Berankis progress I think Verdasco will be too strong for him, but the more matches he gets against players of this calibre the quicker we will see the Lithuanian start to fulfil his potential.
Milos Raonic will be the first of the remaining 3 to take to the court when he faces Marcel Ilhan in his first round match. Ilhan has lost all 8 of his matches this year, and has lost to Raonic in Tokyo towards the end of 2010, so it’s hard to see anything other than a Raonic win here. Next up would be a serve shoot out against Mardy Fish, a match he would have a fair chance of winning despite the Americans greater experience and home advatage. Harrison, Chardy or Garcia-Lopez would follow and again you couldn’t deny the Canadian would have a great chance there as well. If and when he manages to get that far, and I think he will, we will look at the latter stages of the draw.
Thiemo de Bakker will take on Benjamin Becker this afternoon in what is almost certain to be a serve dominated affair. Neither player is in the best of form and both will see this as an opportunity to pick up some form and regain some confidence. This may come down to a mental battle between two player not exactly renowned for their iron will, so it could easily go either way, but I think de Bakkers more conservative ground game will see him sneak through to the next round.
Finally Kei Nishikori takes on the Russian Igor Andreev in a match that pairs two players with rankings going in opposite directions. Andreev has been poor for some time and may find Nishikori’s solid return game is a bad fit for his aggresive groundstrokes. The Russian is prone to high unforced error counts when he’s out of form and if Nishikori can use his speed to keep the ball in play he should profit from Andreev’s errors. Andreev can be dangerous but recent performances suggest the Japanese youngster will progress to the second round