The top three seeds, Novak Djokovic of Serbia, Roger Federer of Switzerland and Rafael Nadal of Spain have safely moved into the second round at Wimbledon. Joining them is last year’s finalist Kevin Anderson of South Africa but three of the biggest stars of the GenNext in tennis, Alexander Zverev of Germany, Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece and Dominic Thiem of Austria all suffered disappointing first round exit on the grass of Wimbledon.
The defending champion Djokovic, winner in 2011, 2014-5 and 2018 had an easy 6-3,7-5,6-3 win over the German veteran Phillip Kohlschreiber as he opened on the hallowed Center court on Monday, the Opening day of the third grand slam of the year. Kohlschreiber had beaten Djokovic only twice in twelve meetings separated by ten years including his straight sets win at Indian Wells this March and on the clay at Roland Garros in 2009. The top seed exacted sweet revenge for his straight sets loss at Indian Wells and next plays the American Denis Kudla who was a 6-4,6-1,6-3 winner of Malek Jaziri of Tunisia.
The Swiss superstar Roger Federer, seeded second and a champion in 2003-07, 2012 and 2017 started his campaign on Tuesday against the spirited South African Lloyd Harris who was making his debut on Center court. The 22 year old Harris, ranked 86th in the world got off to a flying start as he broke serve in the sixth game and then saved a break point in the ninth game before serving out the first set 6-3. Federer came back in style breaking serve twice in the next three sets to win 3-6,6-1,6-2,6-2. Federer next plays the British wildcard Jay Clarke who beat the American wildcard Noah Rubin 4-6,7-5,6-4,6-4.
The two time champion Rafael Nadal, winner in 2008 and 2010 overcame a slow start but finished strong in his 6-3,6-1,6-3 win over Yuichi Sugita of Japan in two hours and one minute on court number One. That sets up a mouthwatering rematch of the 2015 third round match against the controversial Australian Nick Kyrgios who required five sets to beat fellow countryman Jordan Thompson 7-6(4),3-6,7-6(10),0-6,6-1. Kyrgios won the third set tie-break on his sixth set point. Thompson then bageled the temperamental isgios the fourth set. The Canberra native then rebounded to claim the decider 6-1. The match lasted three hours and thirty three minutes.
The seventh seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas who has the maximum number of match wins this year at 34, saved two match points in the fourth set tie-break against the Italian Thomas Fabbiano but lost the fifth set and the match 4-6,6-3,4-6,7-6(8),3-6. Jiri Vesley of the Czech Republic, who reached the last sixteen in 2018 but had to come the qualifiers took out the sixth seeded German Alexander Zverev 4-6,6-3,6-2,7-5. Fifth seeded Dominic Thiem who has reached the finals in Roland Garros last two years, continued his miserable run on grass as he ousted by the 2017 semi-finalist Sam Querrey of the U.S.A. The unseeded Querrey won 6-7(4),7-6(1),6-3,6-0
Notable first round winners include last year’s finalist Kevin Anderson of South Africa who beat the Frenchman Pierre Hugues-Herbert 6-3,6-4,6-2, the 2017 finalist Marin Cilic of Croatia who needed two tie-breaks to get past the Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 7-6(6),7-6(4),6-3. Also advancing was the 2016 finalist Milos Raonic of Canada who took out India’s long player in the draw Prajnesh Gunneswaran 7-6(1),6-4,6-2. Stanislas Wawrinka, Kei Nishikori, Karen Khachanov, last year’s semi-finalist John Isner. The Briton Kyle Edmund enthralled the center Court on Monday after completing a 6-4,6-4,6-4 over the Spaniard Jaime Munar.
The following is the list of matches in round two on Wednesday with my pick mentioned first :-
Novak Djokovic (1) v. Denis Kudla (-)
Leonardo Mayer (-) v. Hubert Hurkacz (-)
Felix Auger-Aliassime (19) v. Courentin Moutet (-)
Marcel Granollers (-) v. Ugo Humbert (-)
Daniil Medvedev (11) v. Alexei Popyrin (-)
David Goffin (21) v. Jeremy Chardy (-)
Kyle Edmund (30) v. Fernando Verdasco (-)
Ivo Karlovic (-) v. Thomas Fabbiano (-)
Kevin Anderson (4) v. Janko Tipsarevic (-)
Andreas Seppi (-) v. Guido Pella (26)
Stanislas Wawrinka (22) v. Reilly Opelka (-)
Milos Raonic (15) v. Robin Haase (-)
Karen Khachanov (10) v. Feliciano Lopez (-)
Roberto Bautista Agut (23) v. Steve Darcis (-)
Benoit Paire (28) v. Miomir Kecmanovic (-)
Jiri Vesley (-) v. Pablo Cuevas (-)
Sam Querrey (-) v. Alexander Rublev (-)
John Millman (-) v. Laslo Djere (31)
Giles Simon (20) v. Tennys Sandgren (-)
Marton Fucsovics (-) v. Fabio Fognini (12)
The following is the list of matches to be played on Thursday with my pick mentioned first:-
Marin Cilic (13) v. Joao Sousa (-)
Daniel Evans (-) v. Nikoloz Basilashvili (18)
Jo Wilfred Tsonga (-) v. Ricardas Berankis (-)
Rafael Nadal (3) v. Nick Kyrgios (-)
Kei Nishikori (8) v. Cameron Norrie (-)
Alex de Minaur (25) v. Steve Johnson (-)
Jan Lennard Struff (33) v. Taylor Fritz (-)
John Isner (9) v. Mikhail Kukushkhin (-)
Matteo Berrettini (17) v. Marcos Baghdatis (-)
Diego Schwartzman (24) v. Dominik Shoepfer (-)
Lucas Pouille (27) v. Gabrielle Barrere (-)
Roger Federer (2) v. Jay Clarke (-)
– Rasesh Mehta [Rasesh Mehta is an analyst with the Tennis Galaxy. You can reach him at the email: firstname.lastname@example.org]