With Wimbledon, the oldest Grand Slam tournament around the corner we start predicting who has more chances to do well and lift the big trophy. Unlike Roland Garros, where in men’s singles everything was quite clear: there are favorites represented by Novac Djokovic and Rafael Nadal and the rest, Wimbledon will be not that prosaic. So…
Novac Djokovic at Wimbledon
Due to the number of reasons Novac Djokovic is deemed favorite of Wimbledon 2014: he lost Roland Garros, so he must be angry. He longs to win and to take revenge. The Australian Open also wasn’t kind to him, Roland Garros was taken on by Nadal. It’s difficult to say what the USA Open will look like for him. His head is likely to be full of family matters. And generally it’s useless to look 2-3 months ahead in tennis. So Novac is simply obliged to concentrate on Wimbledon if he wants to get the Grand Slam title this year. Secondly, it’s his training approach. On the grass Djokovic plays only Wimbledon. So immediately after Roland Garros he must have headed to grass courts. If we are right, byThe Serb has been having two weeks of tough preparation honing his game. It may be surprising, but absence of play practice has a good influence on Djokovic. He takes his time to have a rest, to hone some of the elements, to save his form. It explains why his best tennis the Seb displays at the beginning of the season in Australia. And finally, the draw of the tournament. Djokovic will face relatively easy opponents. Some problems may start only in the semifinal. Till that moment, only Stepanek in the second round be some kind of challenge, the rest is the open route to success. So we wait the Serbian in the semifinal, at least. And then the victory is not that far away.
Federer, Murray, Nadal at Wimbledon
We mention this four as the most probable rivals for Djokovic in the upcoming semifinal and final match. Federer and Ferrer have the last chances in career to win the grand slam title. But Federer has in due time taken them all, and this Wimbledon can be only a cherry berry on the farewell pie, while David Ferrer’s chances to the only one grand slam cup chances decrease every year. He failed to show super tennis at Roland Garros and evidently he now put it all at Wimbledon which is usually quite successful for him. Roger showed wonderful tennis at the Halle Open and now he’ll do his best to take Wimbledon. And shall he reach the final rounds, he will be one of the main favorites at this grass tournament. Roger is not that young, so it’s vital for him to save the forces during the 1st week in order to prevail on the 2nd one. But he’s currently in good form and in a playing mood. No doubt, that his aggressive tennis on the grass will become an obstacle for many players. For us Federer is the second title contender.
Andy Murray is full of surprises again. He ended up his cooperation with Lendl, which used to be very beneficial for Murray. And it would become the main key for his potential failure at the Wimbledon this year. In London we watched the “old fellow” Andy who switched to the defending tennis and plainly hit the ball to the other side of the net if something went wrong. The last-year-Murray on the grass was practically unbeatable. Now it feels like only the name remained the same, nothing else. Coach change, highly exhausted Roland Garros will make it even more complicated for Murray to defend the title. But who knows? Murray is a player of high potential. And if finds the way to pull himself together and displays his tennis, he will be the fourth title favorite.
With Nadal it’s not all that clear. He lost two Wimbledon titles in a row. Will it be the third? I don’t think so. The knee injury is left behind; his movements have become more reliable that the previous seasons when he did poorly in the starting matches. The defeat from Brown shouldn’t be taken in to account. The German could easily beat Djokovic and Federer with such a high level of tennis he showed yesterday. Playing on the grass it’s important to know how to approach the ball and keep it in play. Rafa is one of the best in this component, giving it up only to Djokovic, perhaps. Certainly, it’s rather difficult to estimate Nadal’s current form before the Wimbledon. But we think that this year the Spaniard will at least reach the quarter-final. What might prevent him? This year Nadal will face very difficult opponents. We won’t be shocked if the Spanish will have to pack up after the first round with Klizhan. The latter shows very decent tennis these days, then the winner of the Paire/Rosol matchup, Karlovic, Gaskuet, Nishikori, Federer and Djokovic. Not the easiest way to the tile, so to say.
Wawrinka, Nishikori, Dimitrov at Wimbledon
These three are capable of posing some threat. All of them have been showing good tennis lately and there is nothing to be surprised about: they have plenty of time to prepare for the grass tournament as they were kicked out from the first round of Roland Garros. So we are anticipating good game from them. Wawrinka managed to hone his service game and his return may be very beneficial for him at the upcoming Wimbledon. Another issue is that grass for Stan, in my opinion, is a very rapid surface. His slow strokes, long backhand and forehand swings are not that efficient on the grass. Certainly, this technique makes the ball rotate fast and adds more force to the hits, but on the rapid grass Stanislas isn’t very accurate at hitting balls pulling them 3 meters out. Nishikori shows better tennis match after match. The Japanese lacks easy points gained at his serve. Everything in his hands. We are looking forward to see excellent results from the Japanese player, although he was drawn to play many strong grass players. Speaking about Dimitrov, the Bulgarian should fight and surprise. Time for his outstanding achievements has come. I’m only suspicious about his weak physical form which may be crucial in a 3-set match. But it’s evident that Bulgarian is currently working at this component. His really weak side is his service return. He is not cracked out to be in top 8.
All the rest at Wimbledon
Don’t be overenthusiastic about Raonic. He won’t progress for too much. Super serve alone is not enough to prevail on the grass. One should move and return correctly. Milos is on the contrary, not that good at these components. It’s also unlikely that the second troublemaker in men’s tour, Ernest Gulbis, will achieve anything significant. We think that he was at the peak of his form during the clay portion of the season. Grass is too fast for the Latvian players. While the two representatives of Croatia, Cilic and Karlovic, are capable of surprising us. Both of them started this year strongly, so we think they would reach the final rounds. Probably someone else whom we haven’t mentioned will make us stare, as there are many players who did their best to prepare for His Majesty Wimbledon, but there is a great likelihood that the title will go to someone who has taken the grand slam event before. Generally speaking, these are our considerations.
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