Wimbledon is finally upon us with several contenders in the mix for both the Men and Women’s singles along with the traditional strawberries and cream.
Unlike many previous male build up grass court events, this year has been massively unpredictable with the big name seeds except Roger Federer coming a cropper early on.
Over in the women’s draw, once again the winner could be anyone from a wild card to the world no.1 Angelique Kerber.
It certainly wouldn’t be Wimbledon without strawberries and cream so who will be left with sour strawberries in the mouth and who will be licking the cream in delight?
Defending champion, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are the top two seeds but have underperformed so far in 2017, leaving the world no.1 ranking up for grabs here.
Rafael Nadal and Stan Wawrinka will be looking to usurp that prestigious from their grasps in what looks to be a four way battle for the world no.1 ranking
Murray’s path to the title certainly promises to be challenging with Stan Wawrinka and Rafael Nadal his likeliest opposition in the quarter and semi finals respectively.
His early rounds however look dangerous with Dustin Brown and Nick Krygios lurking in his section.
Djokovic’s path will be very intriguing to watch as things might get tough from the third round onwards.
Juan Martin Del Potro could provide an early test of the Serbian’s title credentials on the first Saturday, thus setting up a tough second week if it’s another five set thriller like in their 2013 semi final.
If Djokovic gets past Del Potro, he has it all to do with Feliciano Lopez, Dominic Thiem and Roger Federer all potentially standing between him and another Wimbledon final.
Federer and Nadal might of won this year’s two grand slams so far but Wimbledon has seen them be poles apart in recent years.
Federer has reached three finals since 2011 whilst Nadal hasn’t been beyond the 4th round in the same period. Will this year be any different?
The draw has surprisingly been very kind to both vertans, although Federer could have a tricky fourth round clash with Grigor Dimitrov.
As for Nadal, he might have well be given a ticket to the last eight right now.
There are definitely some interesting first round clashes outside of the big names, with Fernando Verdasco vs Kevin Anderson being a tasty looking tie.
Both players have history for troubling the big seeds in latter stages at SW19 but only one can try to do so this year.
Thiem too could find himself struggling in the first round against former quarter finalist, Vasek Pospisil. Get pass the Canadian and his sector looks easy to get out of.
Murray might be attracting the attention but other British men include;
- Kyle Edmund
- Brydan Klein
- Cameron Norrie
- Alexander Ward
- James Ward
Out of those Brits, Kyle Edmund looks to be the best bet to progress further alongside Murray. If Klein spring a couple of surprises then we could see an all British clash between him and Edmund in the third round.
Britain’s hopes lie with Johanna Konta but she faces tough competition from several other contenders.
With Serena Williams on maternity leave, her crown is up for grabs and given how unpredictable the French Open was, expect the unexpected as to who will lift the Women Singles’ title.
Angelique Kerber, Simona Halep, Karolina Pilskova and Elena Svitolina are all in contention for the women’s world no.1 ranking. Could this element add extra pressure to what is an already open draw?
The latter stages certainly looks intriguing, should things go to plan with the following QF clashes;
- Kerber vs Kuznetsova
- Pilskova vs Wozniacki
- Cibulkova vs Svitolina
- Konta vs Halep
The first round has however thrown open several banana skins with ninth seed, Agnieszka Radwanska facing former world no.1 Jelena Jankovic and Carla Suarez Navarro vs Eugenie Bouchard.
Britain’s biggest hope, Konta faces a first round rematch of the 2017 French Open when she faces Hsieh Su-wei.
Will being on home soil help bolster her hopes of avoiding an early exit?
Two former Wimbledon favourites make their return to SW19 after eventful years.
Bulgarian, Victoria Azarenka faces a rising star in CiCi Bellis as she continues her rise back up the rankings after maternity leave.
Two time Wimbledon champion, Petra Kvitova will be looking to avoid an upset against Sweden’s Johanna Larsson, as she continues her comeback following a nasty knife attack during the off season.
Whilst the unpredictable draw takes centre stage, Konta’s fellow British hopefuls include;
- Katie Boulter
- Naomi Broady
- Laura Robson
- Heather Watson
Looking at their first round matches, Robson and Watson would be favourites to progress.
Broady is tricky to predict but if can get past Irina-Camelia Begu, expect her to potentially make the third round.
Shocks in store?
Personally, I am disappointed with the men’s draw because apart from Djokovic and Murray’s sectors, there doesn’t look to be many potential shocks until at least third round.
From then on, we will see whether the youngsters can finally start to step up and dismantle the old guard.
As for the women’s draw, there are plenty of room for shocks from the get go so expect to see the early headlines coming from that draw.
As for the king and queen of Wimbledon, it could be anyone’s due to several big names being out of form.
If hard pushed to name two, I would go for Federer and Kvitova because they look to be the best two in form players.