Originally Posted by DeShaun
No. I think the OP is onto something. Whoever draws Ferrer is going to become the odds on heavy favorite to win until Rafa returns. Regardless of the surface.
Since we're dealing in hypotheticals, here is one to consider; had Novak in 5 sets beaten Tsonga in the quarters then Andy in 5 again in the semis, Novak would not be guaranteed a final win over Roger if Roger in his quarter and semi had coasted through a Ferrer and/or a Simon respectively in straights.
Rafa not playing gives whoever draws Ferrer a huge advantage.
I don't think Djoko would have needed 5 against Tsonga at AO. If anything, I suspect he would have had an easier time than he did vs Wawrinka who played like a man possessed. Tsonga would have probably taken a set off him tops. He would have had a tough semi vs Murray but then his final vs Fed would have been much easier than his final vs Nadal was last year. Sorry but currently at AO, the toughest possible combination a player could have is Murray/Nadal back to back. And Djoko got that last year. And he won.
Djoko also got the toughest possible combination at USO: Fed/Nadal. And he won too. And the toughest possible combination at WTF: Fed/Murray/Delpo and he won as well. So don't give me this nonsense about draws. The only time the draw defeated Djoko was on clay, RG last year where he failed to survive Fed/Nadal but beating Nadal at RG is probably the toughest ask in tennis history. Fed tried 5 times and failed.