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Wimbledon 2015WIMBLEDON 2015 PREVIEW

It’s that time of year again where arguably the most prestigious tournament in the tennis calendar begins.

Wimbledon will begin on June 29th and run until July 12th.

Below is a preview of the top ten seeded men and women. I have also added five extra male and female players outside the top ten to watch out for.

NO 1 SEEDS

NOVAK DJOKOVIC

DjokovicBest: Winner 2011, 2014
Last Year: Winner

He is the form player in men’s tennis winning the joint most games this year (41) along with Andy Murray, but the Brit has lost 3 more games.

He has reached the final in 3 of the last 4 years and the semi’s in the last 5 years. He has also been to the final of the first two Grand Slams this year winning the Australian Open and coming runner-up in France.

Players will have to find away to contend with his almost superhuman like stamina and exquisite ground strokes. With that being said, losing the French Open final to Wawrinka was a crushing blow to his chances of a Grand Slam season and will put a slight doubt in his game and hope for other players.

Prediction: Runner Up

SERENA WILLIAMS

WilliamsBest: Winner 02,03,09,10,12
Last Year: Third Round

Although not getting any younger, she’s arguably playing the best tennis of her career. She has won the last 3 Grand Slam tournaments and the first two of this season so still on course to complete a Grand Slam season and is two away from equaling Steffi Graf on 22 Grand Slam victories.

No woman can match her athleticism and power on the court but she has not been past the 4th round in the last two years which psychologically could be a problem. That is added to the pressure of trying to become only the fourth woman in history to complete a Grand Slam season.

Prediction: Semi Final

NO2 SEEDS

RODGER FEDERER

FedererBest: Winner 03,04,05,06,07,09,12
Last Year: Runner Up

Despite not being the same force in recent years, he has always saved his best for Wimbledon. His last Grand Slam win came in this tournament in 2012 and last year’s tournament was his first Grand Slam final since that win.

Although he has won a few obscure tournaments this season he has hardly threatened a revival and has had some crushing defeats this season. His run to the French Open QF was decent enough and could give him a bit of confidence going into Wimbledon where he openly states is his favourite tournament.

Prediction: Quarter Final

PETRA KVITOVA

KvitovaBest: Winner 2011,2014
Last Year: Winner

The defending champion is another that saves her best for the grass court. Her only two Grand Slam victories and final appearances have come in this tournament. She has also been to at least the QF in the last 5 years at Wimbledon.

No surprises that she is expected to go far this year but she has been suffering with injuries recently, which could seriously effect her progress. She will have to rely even more on her big serve and powerful forehand to help drag her though games, that’s if she stays fit.

Prediction: Quarter Final

NO3 SEEDS

ANDY MURRAY

MurrayBest: Winner 2013
Last Year: Quarter Final

The Brit is many people’s favourite to win this tournament. Along with Djokovic he has won the most games this season (41) and has been in arguably his best form coming into this tournament.

Since he won Wimbledon he has reached at least the Quarter Final in every Grand Slam but unfortunately no final.

To find his way to the final it is conceivable he will have to beat Nadal and Federer along the way so he will have to earn it. He will have the added pressure of home town expectations on his shoulders to contend with but prepared for it well with a 4th Queens club title recently.

Prediction: Winner

SIMONA HALEP

HalepBest: Semi Final 2014
Last Year: Semi Final

Last year was the best in her career as she come runner-up in the French Open and reached the semi’s in Wimbledon. This year she only reached the QF in Australia and only reached the 2nd round in France. Although her game is more suited to grass she has not been in the best of forms.

She will need to add a lot more versatility, and fine tune her volley game to add to her aggressive baseline style, if she is to progress at Wimbledon. She did win in Indian Wells but her shock 2nd round exit in the French Open signifies the type of season she’s been having.

Prediction: Fourth Round

NO4 SEEDS

STAN WAWRINKA

WawrinkaBest: Quarter Final 2014
Last Year: Quarter Final

He has played second fiddle to compatriot Federer for years but finally emerged from the shadows to beat Federer in the Quarter Finals, on the way to winning the 2015 French Open a few weeks ago. Previous to that, he reached the SF in Australia.

He’s playing the best tennis of his carer and has reached the Quarter Finals in each of the last 4 Grand Slam events.

He is known for his superb back hand and the tigerish way he gets about the court. He’s 2-0 in Grand Slam finals and has a good record against the top seeds. With that being said Wimbledon has never been a good hunting ground.

Prediction: Quarter Final

MARIA SHARAPOVA

SharapovaBest: Winner 2004
Last Year: Fourth Round

The Russian has been consistently inconsistent in her Grand Slam career. In her 10 years since she won Wimbledon she has only l final and 2 semi final appearances. She has also only won three Grand Slams since 2004 and has not been past the 4th round in the last three Wimbledon’s. She has also failed to reach the QF in 7 of the past 8 years.

With that kind of record you will be a fool to expect much from her this year but year after year fans still tip her, or maybe will her to do well. This is because It seems she has all the attributes to do well on grass but I have always thought mentality is a big flaw.

Prediction: Fourth Round

NO5 SEEDS

KEI NISHIKORI

NishikoriBest: Fourth Round 2014
Last Year: Fourth Round

Last year was a breakthrough year, reaching his first Grand Slam final at the US Open and reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon, which is the furthest he has been.

Fourth doesn’t sound like much but he has slowly, but surely improved at Wimbledon over the years. He followed that up in 2015 by rising to his highest ever ranking of 4th in March.

He has been mentioned as one of the most technically gifted players in the game and in particular his ability to return serve. Unfortunately his lack of physicality has been a problem and hinders him against the top seeds.

Prediction: Fourth Round

CAROLINE WOZNIACKI

WozniackiBest: Fourth Round 09,10,11,14
Last Year: Fourth Round

Wozniacki is one of the most underwhelming former no1 seeds in the woman’s game. She is still searching for a Grand Slam victory and has only been to a GS final twice, both in the US Open in 09 & 14.

She does not have a particularly good record at Wimbledon and has not been past the 4th round in eight attempts. Her Grand Slam record this year reads two second round exits.

To add to her woes she’s been suffering with injury and had to pull out in the semi final of a recent tournament in Eastbourne with a back injury. With all things considered she is again not expected to go far this year.

Prediction: Fourth Round

NO6 SEEDS

TOMAS BERDYCH

BerdychBest: Runner Up 2010
Last Year: Third Round

The best way to describe his Wimbledon form is indifferent. Though he reached the final in 2010, he has only been as far as the quarter finals 3 tines in 11 years.

This season he got to the semi finals of the Australian Open but was knocked out in the 4th round of the French Open

On grass, although he has a big serve and hits the ball extremely hard to win his fair share of games, he doesn’t seem to have enough mobility to win the fast paced rallies. Although if he puts it all together he could pose a hard task to get past.

Prediction: Semi Final

LUCIE SAFAROVA

safarovaBest: Semi Final 2014
Last Year: Semi final

The burning question will be how much was last year’s semi final appearance a fluke or a step in the right direction? Previous to her semi final appearance she had five 1st round, two 2nd round and one 3rd round exit.

With that being said, in her last Grand Slam in France she reached her first Grand Slam final so it would suggest she’s currently in form.

Her game has visibly improved in recent years and her two-handed back hand has looked more powerful. She took Serena Williams to three sets in the French Open and will look to build on that good run of form.

Prediction: Quarter Final

NO7 SEEDS

MILOS RAONIC

RaonicBest: Semi final 2014
Last Year: Semi Final

Having only been competing in the Grand Slams since 2010, he has done very well to find himself in the top ten.

He has progressed well and made it to the QF of the French Open last year, then followed it up by reaching the semi’s at Wimbledon. He also reached the Quarter Finals in his only Grand Slam event this year in Australia.

At 6f 5in he is a giant of a player with a monstrous serve that’s the focal point of his game. The only thing that will slow him down is injury or non activity as he missed the French Open due to foot surgery. If he stays injury free, he could be a big player in the future of men’s tennis.

Prediction: Semi Final

ANA IVANOVIC

IvanovicBest: Semi Final 2007
Last Year: Third Round

Wimbledon has never been a happy hunting ground with just one semi final appearance in 9 years. But following a first round exit in the Australian Open, she did reach the semi final at the French Open and will hope to build on that at Wimbledon.

When on form she has a brilliant serve and a more aggressive than usual baseline game with good passing shots. The issue is, she’s known to be very inconsistent and has suffered from a lack of confidence in the past.

Prediction: Runner Up

NO8 SEEDS

DAVID FERRER

FerrerBest: Quarter Final 2012,2013
Last Year: Second Round

A veteran on the circuit, he will always be known as an underdog who will bring out the best in the top players and give them a hard game.

He will want to improve on last year when he was dumped out in the 2nd round, especially as in the previous two tournaments he reached the Quarter Finals, the furthest he has ever been.

Wimbledon is the only Grand Slam that he hasn’t progressed past the QF in and with time running out, this year will be one of the few opportunities he has left. He has however demonstrated consistency to stay in the top ten for so many years, this is a testament to his tenacious and determined playing style where he fights for every point.

Prediction: Fourth Round

EKATERINA MAKAROVA

MakarovaBest: Quarter Final 2014
Last Year: Quarter Final

Another who has yet to win a Grand Slam. She is however currently playing her best tennis and up to her highest ranking in her career.

2014 was a breakthrough year as following her QF exit at Wimbledon, she followed it up by reaching the semi’s in the US Open. This year she reached the Semi’s in Australia but only managed to reach the 4th round at the French Open.

With the French Open aside, she will want to continue her good form and Wimbledon possesses a great opportunity to show some progress and consistency for a second year. She is one of the few players that has a better back hand than forehand and if she improves on that, along with her athleticism she could prove to be a formidable opponent.

Prediction: Winner

NO9 SEEDS

MARIN CILIC

CilicBest: Quarter Final 2014
Last Year: Quarter Final

The big serving, powerful Croatian was on somewhat of a bulldozing run in tennis at the tail end of last year.

He reached his first Quarter Final at Wimbledon in just under two years of competing, then followed it up by steam rolling the US Open, beating Berdych in the semi’s and Federer in the final, both in straight sets.

Big things were expected from there on but sadly he was struck down with a shoulder injury that saw him miss two months and the Australian open. He is not yet fully back to his best amidst rumours of more injury woes but if he’s fully fit he’s more than capable to upset a few and have a deep run in the tournament.

Prediction: Quarter Final

CARLA SUAREZ NAVARRO

NavarroBest: Fourth Round 2013
Last Year: Third Round

From the four Grand Slams, Wimbledon is the only one where she has failed to make it to the QF and I doubt it will change this year.

She is quick around the court and can hold a rally but just does not possesses the power on grass to win those quick points. She did reach her highest ranking only a month ago but has since lost a place and down to ninth.

She is yet to get past the QF in any Grand Slam and has only won 1 title in her career thus far. With those kind of stats you’ll be hard pressed to see her get far at Wimbledon. She will however display her variety of shots and a good single-handed back hand to test her opponents.

Prediction: Fourth Round

NO10 SEEDS

RAFAEL NADAL

NadalBest: Winner 2008, 2010
Last Year: Fourth Round

The two-time champion has had a terrible year, dogged by injury and suffering confidence issues.

Surprisingly he has not actually been past the 4th round in the last three years and although it’s somewhat unusual to see his 10th seeding, it is accurate of the kind of year he has had. This year he exited at the Quarter Final stage at both the Grand Slam tournaments thus far.

We all know on his day he can beat anyone. The question is will his day ever come again? Though players have shown it’s possible to have injury lay offs and come back, his level was so high and his high-octane game was so demanding it seems since surgery last year that level is just to far to get back to. But this is Wimbledon.

Prediction: Quarter Final

ANGELIQUE KERBER

KerberBest: Semi Final 2012
Last Year: Quarter Final

Searching for her first Grand Slam title she has probably had her better games at Wimbledon and will want to build on reaching the Quarter Final last year.

With that being said, she is yet to make it to a Grand Slam final and has yet to equal the form she showed in 2012 when she was ranked 5th.

Although she seems to be on a resurgence this year as it marks the first year she has won two titles. She recently won her 6th career title and first on grass in the lead up to Wimbledon, so she is coming in with a massive confidence boost.

Prediction: Semi Final

 

Five other players to look out for…..

MEN – WOMEN

Giles Simon 12 – 12 Eugenie Bouchard
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 13 – 13 Agnieszka Radwanska
John Isner 17 – 18 Sabine Lisicki
Gael Monfils 18 – 19 Sara Errani
Richard Gasquet 20 – 22 Samantha Stosur