The King of Clay at Wimbledon
As much as I respect Rodger Federer’s run of eight Wimbledon championships in the last fifteen years, I loved watching Rafa Nadal win his two championships in 2008 and 2010. Many critics and fans alike say that his five-set win over Roger Federer in 2008 was the greatest match ever played. This year, I predict Federer reaching the final. Fortunately for us, Rafa Nadal is seeded number two, which means that if he takes care of business we may very well see a Nadal-Federer final, and relive 2008 all over again. That would be an amazing gift for tennis. So, who can get in the way of Nadal getting to the final? Let’s look at some of the names that stand in Rafa’s way.
- Dennis Shapovalov (26): he’s fast he’s young, he’s hungry and he’s due for a big Grand Slam break. The Young Canadian plays big time tennis when he’s on, and he’s starting to gain consistency. He’s definitely a dark horse. Also, he’s the only real danger before the Semi Finals in my opinion.
- Juan Martin Del Potro (5): Del Potro’s best surface is the hard court where he can really zone in on those monster forehands. However, I think he’s got a great chance to make it through to the Semis for a potential match up with Nadal.
- Alex Zverev (4): Zverev has continued to grow and build on his game, living up to his ranking by getting solid results on the tour. However, he falters during Grand Slams. Will this be a break out tournament for Zverev? If it is, he’ll have to get through Nick Kyrgios in the round of 16.
- Nick Kyrgios (15): Nick Kyrgios is the most talented man not named Roger Federer in the draw. He’s got the big serve and an effortless game. He’s exciting and plays big. He’s also many people’s favorite to make it deep into the tournament.
- Novak Djokovic (12): Novak’s a three-time champion, and a 12-time Grand Slam champion. Although, he’s still struggling to come back to his best, you can’t discount him on grass or any other surface for that matter.
In sum, it’s going to be tough for Rafa Nadal. He’ll need to play his best tennis and hope for some luck. We can only dream of another Federer – Nadal classic.