The obvious player to keep an eye on in the top section of the draw is Roger Federer. The top seed has a fairly comfortable couple of rounds to begin, and he will need to be clinical in an attempt to save energy for the later stages of the tournament. I was a touch worried looking at how he finished off that match against Coric last week, and thinking back to the Australian Open as well (lets be honest he probably should have lost to Cilic); there has to be some slight concerns now around his ability to bring his best in those long matches. The best way to work through the tournament for Federer is to get on and off the court as quickly as possible. Federer should have too much for Lajovic and then Lacko (assuming he beats Bonzi), however a potential round 3 against Youzhny and a round 4 against Coric could really test Federer in week 1.
Looking elsewhere in that top quarter and there are a couple of players who are solid on grass who could make a run for the second week on their best form. Kevin Anderson hasn’t showed his 2015 grass form in the last couple of years, and based off his loss to Leo Mayer the other week, I think his price to win the quarter is a touch too low. Coric is the obvious wildcard here – can he maintain the level from Halle across best of 5 set tennis against a number of experienced players? I am not entirely sure I trust him from an outright or quarter better perspective, but he is someone I will definitely be keeping an eye on throughout the tournament.
I’m not sure Sam Querrey has shown enough over the last couple of weeks to consider him winning his quarter like he did last year. That being said, he did come into Wimbledon off the back of losses to Cilic and Medvedev, so if he does get a few wins under his belt his confidence may build. His first round opponent Jordan Thompson could knock off Querrey on his day, and I see him having a difficult time in a potential second round meeting with Stakhovsky as well. Stakhovsky at $101 to win the Quarter may present a nice trading opportunity, however I would also be inclined to back him outright in a potential second round with Querrey.
The bigger prices that are worth considering from a trading perspective would be Gasquet and Stakhovsky, however I rarely like to get involved in Quarters that involve Roger Federer. I am keen to oppose Federer in some capacity this fortnight, however unless something comes up in a head to head, I will look to oppose him later in the tournament.
In Quarter 2 you will find who I believe to be the best chance of causing the upset for the tournament. Marin Cilic is slowly but surely closing the gap on the likes of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic in terms of performance in the big moments. Cilic is fresh coming off his Queens Club victory, where he was able to save match points on the way to defeating Novak Djokovic in 3 sets.
When you consider the other favourites of this quarter to be Dimitrov (out of form), Raonic (question marks surrounding his body and fitness, especially over the best of 5 set format) and Isner (chronic underachiever at Grand Slam level), I feel this is Cilic’s quarter to lose. Cilic is a player who normally improves his level as the tournament progresses and the opponents get tougher, so the fact I cannot see any of his potential opponents in the first three rounds being able to really cause a big upset here is a good sign for Cilic. A potential 4th round meeting with Raonic would be the biggest worry, however he should start a very strong favourite should they event they were to meet.
Looking into the bottom half of the quarter, and the two biggest names are slated to play against each other in the opening round of the tournament. I don’t think we can trust Wawrinka’s body, or Dimitrov’s form, to make their way to the Quarter Final, so there may be a little big of value amongst the other players in the section. Although I mentioned him being an underachiever above, it looks like one of Isner or Steve Johnson could really take advantage of their draw to make a Quarter Final. All in all however, this seems to be Cilic’s quarter.
The 3rd quarter is arguably to most interesting out of any on both the men’s and women’s Wimbledon draws. In my opinion it is a race in two, followed by a couple of outsiders who may spring a surprise. I am happy to oppose Zverev given his injury concerns since the French Open, so I am happy to rule a line through him. I think this quarter will come down to Kyrgios vs Djokovic, with the potential surprises coming from Edmund and Khachanov (and Tomic if he is fit). Gulbis could easily find the 4th round if he plays his best tennis, so at $101+ to win the quarter presents a nice trading option, but you couldn’t back him to deliver with confidence.
Ultimately though I think this comes down to the top 2 names. Looking at the draw, Considering my two main threats to Kyrgios and Djokovic fall in Djokovic’s sections, I am more inclined to take Kyrgios at the bigger price to win this quarter. His biggest test early would be a potential meeting with Tomic, but I would assess that further if it became a reality.
A last note on this section – don’t sleep on Verdasco. He has played some impressive tennis here over the years, and could put a couple of solid performances together (if they met I’d have him beating Thiem in round 3).
If you want to take the $2 on Rafael Nadal on grass to win his quarter, then by all means go ahead. The 4th quarter appears to be wide open, as many are unsure how Nadal will go transitioning to grass, and how Del Potro will manage coming off one Boodles Exhibition match that he won 15-13 against Fritz in the Super Tiebreak. This week is arguably the biggest chance in some time for the likes of Goffin, Lopez, Chardy and Mischa Zverev to put in a career Grand Slam fortnight, as this draw could really open up with one or two solid performances. Mischa Zverev is the type of player Nadal will not want to face in the third round, and it will only become more difficult from there. Assuming he is fit, Del Potro should win this quarter and the $3.50+ on offer is decent, but I would also be inclined to sprinkle a bit on Goffin (although I would wait as I think Ebden is a massive Round 1 threat), Schwartzman (decent run to round 4), and Chardy.
I really do believe that the best chance of a player taking the title from Roger Federer is sitting in his own half. I am very confident that Marin Cilic is in for a big fortnight, and I would argue that similar to their US Open meeting, it is betting to come up against Federer in the Semi Final than it would the final. I am happy to suggest a play on Cilic to win his quarter, as well as an outright selection.
The other thing to think about is who from the bottom half of the draw is going to make it to the final. I really think that this is the best chance for Kyrgios to push towards Grand Slam success. He has beaten Djokovic in the past, and I think he could handle anyone who came out of the bottom section in a potential semi final. He seems relaxed on court, and this draw presents a massive opportunity. If he were to make a final with his confidence sky high, it would be tough to oppose him. Considering he is $5.50 to win his quarter and only $17 for outright, I would just make a play on winning the quarter.
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