Nadal, Azarenka tops in Miami?

Sports Illustrated’s tennis blogger, the smart & savvy Courtney Nguyen, sketches out how the Miami Sony Ericsson Open might play out in the latest installment of Beyond the Baseline.

Courtney predicts a Federer-Djokovic semifinal on one side – with high-flying Federer coming out on top. (He’s been red-hot since the U.S. Open.) On the other side, Nadal defeats Thomas Berdych, and then goes on to beat Federer in the final. Key Biscayne would love that match-up. Federer has inherited the much-loved elder-statesman sentimental-fave mantle worldwide, while Nadal revitalized his standing with fans with his valiant six-hour Aussie Open final loss to Djokovic.

The women? This tourney will see Venus Williams returning to action, though she’s unlikely to make it far enough to face her petulant sister Serena, who’s in the other half of the draw. Courtney sees Serena defeating Maria Sharapova in one semi, but losing to world #1 Victoria Azarenka in the final.

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