Wimbledon 2018 Men’s Tennis Preview

Wimbledon

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia.

Men’s tennis’ finest will be competing for the prestigious Wimbledon trophy over the next two weeks, but who are the favorites? The Tennis Review looks at the main contenders for the 2018 Gentlemen’s singles trophy.

The Favorites

Marin Cilic, runner up 2017

Putting Marin Cilic at the top of this list seems only the sensible thing to do after his recent Queens win in which he defeated Novak Djokovic after saving championship point.

Cilic trailed Djokovic 1-14 in their head to head going into that match and is as infamous for his mental issues as he is famous for his big serve and groundies. Beating Djokovic the way he did was an encouraging sign that Cilic is improving in his weakest department.

Cilic has been improving in general since winning the US Open ’14. The Croatian may not have replicated that slam win, but he has become more consistent and has won an ATP 1000, an ATP 500, reached two more slam finals, and climbed to No.3 in the world.

Prediction: Champion. Cilic plays his best tennis in slams and over five sets and is looking the most in form on Grass this season.

Roger Federer, Champion, 03-07, 09, 12, 17

Federer has once again built his season around Wimbledon, but in his most recent Grass court outing, losing to Borna Coric in the Halle final, his foundations looked anything but ready for a slam battle.

Federer could of course regroup in time for the Championships, but he won’t go into the tournament as the absolute favorite like he did last season and his recent loss will give his opponents some hope they can end his SW19 reign.

Prediction: Last 16. Federer has drawn his Halle conqueror Borna Coric in the last 16 and will need to be on his game if he is going to avoid being pinned to the baseline and forced into fatal error after fatal error.

Borna Coric, second round, ’15

Coric was 2-6 on Grass before he won Halle, beating Sascha Zverev and Roger Federer en route to the title. That Grass title run was a watershed moment for the 21 year old who has been improving steadily and seems to have garnered the necessary experience and confidence to win big matches.

Coric is the 16th seed after Roberto Bautista Agut’s withdrawal and the draw has landed him right in the way of a last 16 contest with Federer.

Prediction: Semi-final. The mentally toughest of the Next Gen and with the depth of shot and aggression to outgun the other baseliners in his section and keep his more aggressive opponents at the back of the court and reliant on their weakest shots, making them most uncomfortable in the process.

Novak Djokovic, Champion ’11, ’14-15

Djokovic seems to have steadied his season with his recent Queens final appearance, a title he was a match point away from winning.

Prediction: Quarters. Djokovic has had a great draw and will take advantage of it. He showed in Paris and Queens he means business in tennis again and expect to see him in the business end of his second most successful slam.

Grigor Dimitrov, Semi-finalist, ’14.

Dimitrov did not show up in Queens, losing tamely in straights to Djokovic in the last 16 , but Dimitrov’s game is tailor made for Grass and if he is going to notch up another significant run this season, it will be in SW19.

Prediction: Quarters.

Sascha Zverev, fourth round, ’17

Zverev has the serve and the groundies to go far at Wimbledon, however his lack of net game means he is unlikely to be winning the title this season.

Prediction: Fourth round.

Nick Kyrgios, quarter-finalist, 2014.

Anything could happen with Nick Kyrgios.

Prediction: Semis. Something big has to happen to him soon, and this Wimbledon, his draw and recent form (Semis Stuttgart and Queens, defeated by Federer and Cilic) suggest this could be the time he is going to catch fire and go on his best slam run yet.

Juan Martin del Potro, Semi-finalist, 2013

del Potro just gets better and better, winning his first ATP 1000 in Indian Wells and reaching the Roland Garros semis this season.

Prediction: Runner up. del Potro shows up for the big ones and is in the weaker bottom half. By far the biggest match player bar Nadal and blessed with the serve and attacking groundies to excel on grass, del Potro seems destined to make his first slam final since New York ’09.

Early tournament Predictions:

Quarter Finals:

Coric d. Querrey

Cilic d. Dimitrov

Kyrgios d. Djokovic

del Potro d. Pospisil

 

Semi Finals:

Cilic d. Coric

del Potro d. Kyrgios

 

Final:

Cilic d. del Potro

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Christian Deverille

Christian Deverille is a tennis writer with a diploma in Freelance Sports Writing from the London School of Journalism. He loves all things tennis, most of all the Federer and del Potro forehands.
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