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Put yourself on court with ReturnServe. From analysing returns on the court to measuring social sentiment. Data is a game changer. IBM.
David Ferrer

He slips under most people’s radars, but David Ferrer continues to carve out for himself a very impressive tennis career.

The pugnacious Spaniard is currently the world’s third-ranked player, but in the era of the “Big Four” champions Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, plus other Grand Slam winners like Juan Martin del Potro, he’s often overlooked when it comes to discussions of title favouritism at the game’s biggest events.

Yet extraordinarily, at 31 years of age, Ferrer continues to improve.

And that’s exactly why you want him playing for your town at Australian Open 2014 as part of the AO Blitz.

Ferrer enjoyed his most successful and consistent season at the Grand Slams, advancing to his first career major final at Roland Garros – he has now reached the quarterfinals or better at his past eight Grand Slam events. His French Open result vaulted him to a career-high ranking of No.3, which he has held onto for most of that time since.

And just last week at the Paris Masters – where he was the defending champion – he ended a nine-match losing streak to Rafael Nadal in the semifinals to advance to the title match for the second straight year.

So how can you get Ferrer playing for your town at the upcoming Australian Open?

It’s easy – the more points you earn by completing challenges, the more points you earn for your nominated town. And the higher your town finishes on the leader-board, the more chance it will have of being represented by a highly seeded player. The top two towns on the leader-board will flip a coin to see which one scores the top-seeded male player, or the top-seeded female.

Your town could be associated with the third-ranked Spaniard at Australian Open 2014; giant information screens around Melbourne Park, plus scheduling signage, would feature his name, nationality and the Australian town he’s ‘playing for’.

It’s a pretty exciting concept, especially when you consider the prizes on offer. If your representative player wins the men’s or women’s Australian Open singles title, your town will be treated to an AO Blitz party for the entire community, and a whole host of other prizes.

And judging by his recent record at Melbourne Park, Ferrer could very well be that player.

He may not be the bookies’ pick to hoist the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup, but he’s among the players with the best win-loss records at the Australian Open, having gone 14-3 in the past three years and reaching the semifinals in 2011 and 2013. His balanced blend of offence and gritty defence, as well as his supreme fitness, make him perfectly suited to the harsh conditions of the Aussie summer.

People might think he’ll hope to avoid three-time defending champion Djokovic during his 2014 campaign; the Serb has ousted him the past two years and inflicted a brutal semifinal beat-down of the Spaniard in 2013 during which he relinquished just five games. But Ferrer is not one to shy away from the challenge of meeting the biggest names head on – he was just one point away from toppling Murray in the Miami Masters final, and after his aforementioned defeat of Nadal in the Paris semifinals, pushed Djokovic to 7-5 7-5 in the final.

Eventually, a little luck has to fall the Spaniard’s way.

And by registering for the AO Blitz and completing as many challenges as you can, Ferrer could perhaps turn that luck into an Australian Open title for both himself and your town in January.

Follow the AO Blitz on Facebook and on Twitter @aoblitz. For more information and to register, visit aoblitz.com.au.




Sunday, 21 December 2014
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