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No Surprise so Far at US Open - 2001-08-30


The seeded players in the women's draw are winning as expected at the U.S. Open tennis tournament at Flushing Meadow, New York. The matches, at least for now, are almost predictable.

At Wimbledon this year, a new seeding system was introduced. All Grand Slam events now have 32 seeds rather than sixteen. In London, the new system saved a lot of arguments about which players in the women's draw were better on grass. But critics say the top players are now more protected from upsets in the early rounds. The men have more strength and depth in their game, which still produces occasional upsets.

So far at the U.S. Open, top players like Martina Hingis of Switzerland, Americans Lindsay Davenport, Venus and Serena Williams have all breezed through in virtual practice matches untested. American Monica Seles is into round three without being challenged, although she is undecided about the new seeding system.

"In some ways I like it, in some ways I do not," says M. Seles. "I mean it does protect the players out of those few players not playing in the first round, but it does take away the excitement of having upsets too at the same point, so I am kind of torn between them."

Seles has been beaten by lower ranked players in the past, but is looking good to make the latter stages at the U.S. Open. The benefit of the new seeding is the guarantee of high quality match-ups among the final sixteen players.

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