This year’s Wimbledon is going to get underway on June 24th and it is bound to keep the attention of the entire tennis world for two weeks, with the final match taking place on July 7th. With the draw already out, it’s the ideal time to look at who might be able to do well on the green stuff this time around and who might be the right candidate for falling much earlier than expected.
Who Can Win?
There is no need to try to hide stuff behind eloquent words and sentences – Novak Djokovic is the favourite for the title and it would be a major shock to see him lose before the finals, especially since the draw has been uncharacteristically kind to the Serb. His way to the final match looks set to be paved with players that shouldn’t be able to trouble him at all – and the longer format of the game will hinder their chances even more, as Djokovic still has that aura of being the best player in the world, which he arguable really is. There are some potential pitfalls and someone like Tommy Haas or Tomas Berdych could take a set off the world’s number one, but that is about it. There might be a semi-final match with Juan Martin del Potro on the cards, but the Argentinian hasn’t been playing well recently and may actually struggle to even find his way through to that stage of the Grand Slam.
The bottom half of the draw is packed with big names, as Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer find themselves in the very same quarter of the draw, while Andy Murray will be once again fancied to make it to the semis. And, if everything will indeed go according to the plan and expectations, he will also be fancied to lose – once again – to Rafa in the semis. The chances of seeing a surprise finalist from that half of the draw is very low indeed, especially if you consider that all three guys seem to be fit at the moment.
The women’s event might be a bit more interesting for those looking for potential upsets, although it is still hard to answer the question of who is going to beat Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova, who may easily find themselves fighting for a major title just a few weeks after clashing in Paris. Grass is a tricky surface to negotiate, however, and the Russian seems likely to struggle at some point, as her route to the finals includes plenty of big hitters, including Lucie Safarova, Sorana Cirstea, and Sloane Stephens, that could easily put her under some pressure.
The Potential Surprises
There will certainly be some big surprises over the next few days – after all, there always are in these major events. On the men’s side of things, it might be reasonable to expect Marin Cilic to do well after finally finding some form in the Queen’s Club, especially since the draw that has been handed to him isn’t really as difficult as it could have been, with Marcos Baghdatis, his first round opponent, being far from his best these days. Milos Raonic is another player that could surprise everyone – in the negative sense of the word, that is. It is fair to say that his preparation tournaments didn’t really go according to the plan - and the fairly straightforward draw should be the only thing that could save him from feeling a bit embarrassed on the big stage. Finally, Mikhail Youzhny could be set for a fairly deep run after making it to the finals in Halle and taking a set off Roger Federer. With his draw being relatively soft as well, the Russian might indeed be the guy to back if you are looking for some trading opportunities on the betting exchanges.
It is usually hard to speak about the women’s part of the draw with any sort of confidence, but here you go – Petra Kvitova, one of the former champions, might not be able to get very far this time around. She has been struggling with consistency since the beginning of the season and her recent loss against Yanina Wickmayer shows that even the return to her favourite surface might not be enough for her to turn everything around. To top things off, her draw looks quite tricky right from the start – backing the Czech number one to do well would certainly not be the best of ideas. Meanwhile, someone like Tsvetana Pironkova, who doesn’t have the hardest of draws early on, or Angelique Kerber, who has enough experience to deal with the pressure the big stage tends to bring, could easily provide long-shot punters with a good run for their money. And those who believe that fatigue can never become an issue for the younger tennis players could also find interest in backing Simona Halep, who has been in sparkling form in recent days, making a seamless transfer from clay to grass after winning the title in Nuremberg.
With all that in mind, these are some of the betting opportunities that might be worth it:
Novak Djokovic to win Wimbledon 2013 (Best Odds: 2.25 @ Bet365)
Grigor Dimitrov to finish higher than Milos Raonic (Best Odds: 1.66 @ Pinnacle)
Mikhail Youzhny to win his quarter (Best Odds: 26.00 @ Paddy Power)
Simona Halep to win her quarter (Best Odds: 13.00 @ Paddy Power)
Tsvetana Pironkova to win her quarter (Best Odds: 21.00 @ Paddy Power)