|Ashe might have the fireworks but the show might be reserved for other courts. (Getty Images)|
The first day of the U.S. Open was greeted with rain my Mother Nature and she could regift some more rain on Tuesday. But miraculously thanks to a late night on some of the courts, things aren't behind schedule.
Part of the thanks can be given to the usually snappy work put forth by the favorites on Arthur Ashe Stadium. Despite there being five matches on the court, it was one of the earlier finishers among the courts in Flushing Meadows because each of those five matches was won in straight sets ... and that even included the silly and pointless opening ceremony before Kim Clijsters' win over 16-year-old Victoria Duval.
Now on to Day 2 where hopefully the rain will stay away just as Mayor Michael Bloomberg promised on Monday night. Remember, times are anything but exact after the opening matches.
11 a.m.: While women's No. 2 seed Agnieszka Radwanska gets started on Ashe vs. Russia's Nina Bratchikova, the intrigue is probably found elsewhere. Not so much on the court Louis Armstrong Stadium either where Tomas Berdych shouldn't be troubled much by David Goffin.
Getting things started on the Grandstand -- my favorite court for the early part of the tournament, hands down -- is Ana Ivanovic, trying to regain her Slam form. She draws Elina Svitolina and, well you can never rule out an upset of Ivanovic, unfortunately. At the same time No. 11 Nicolas Almagro will have a fight with Radek Stepanek on Court 17 and if you haven't seen up-and-comer Milos Raonic yet, the 15th-seeded Canadian will be in action on Court 11. Lastly if you like serving, the Doctor is in on Court 7; Ivo Karlovic faces Jimmy Wang.
|U.S. Open Day 2|
1 p.m.: It might be on the court at Ashe but you never quite know how the first round will go for Andy Roddick. He faces fellow American Rhyne Williams. At the same time another seeded American male, Sam Querrey, will face Yen-Hsun Lu on the court in Armstrong while down on the Grandstand it will be the always entertaining Jo-Wilfried Tsonga getting started vs. Karol Beck of Slovakia.
But for me the intrigue lies on Court 17 where the 6th-seeded woman in the draw, Angelique Kerber, is in action. She doesn't figure to have a tough time with Anne Keothavong of Great Britain, but the seeded players from Germany had a miserable first day. Florian Mayer, Julia Goerges and Sabine Lisicki comprised three of the four seeded players who lost matches on Day 1.
4 p.m.: For the second straight match, Ashe will have an all-American battle when Venus Williams steps on the court to face Bethanie Mattek-Sands. It will be an interesting match to watch only to see how Venus is doing. Because of the health issues she has dealt with she comes into the Open as a forgotten woman. This first match might let us know if that was a dangerous assumption.
The third round of matches will also have the 10 seeds on both sides in action (Juan Monaco with a tough draw in Guillermo Garcia-Lopez on the Grandstand while Sara Errani has Garbine Muguruza on Court 13) and Stanislas Wawrinka getting started on Court 8, a far cry from where his more famous compatriot and sometimes doubles partner Roger Federer plays.
7 p.m.: The prime time schedule inside Ashe shouldn't be much of a contest, honestly, but it might have the favorites on both sides. Novak Djokovic faces off with Paolo Lorenzi before Serena Williams becomes the third player named Williams to play on Ashe for the day as she faces fellow America Coco Vandeweghe.
Over on the court at Armstrong Caroline Wozniacki, who is still searching for that breakthrough showing at a Slam, faces Irina-Camelia Begu and the Grandstand has the forgotten seeded American femail in Christina McHale taking on Kiki Bertens. Court 17 has an intriguing matchup with Alexandr Dolgoplov taking on Jesse Levine of the U.S. Dolgopolov comes into the Open on a strong U.S. Open Series run and might be able to make some noise.