“There is a certain beauty & majesty to Wimbledon” described the seven-time Grand Slam winner, John McEnroe. As the encore of Rafael Nadal’s La Decima triumph comes to an end, it is time now that the tennis world moves on to one of the most elegant and prestigious tournament.
The wait is all over as the world class players in all white dresses and strawberries will be back in action. Doors at Wimbledon open from Monday, July 3. However, the lowers ranked players will be in action from a week prior as they seek to qualification.
World No.1 and the defending champion Andy Murray is well short of his blistering form which saw him dethrone Djokovic. But seven-time champion Roger Federer will most likely be the man to beat. After winning the Australian Open earlier in the year, the 35-year old Swiss will look for his record 18th Grand Slam title, one short of equalling Martina Navratilova’s all-time record of nine.
Meanwhile, Nadal, after overcoming injury problems and clinching his 10th Roland Garros title on June 11, has moved to the second spot in world rankings. This also makes him another of the Wimbledon favourites this year. Also, on the cards is a repeat of the epic Nadal-Federer final and this can be a dream Wimbledon final this year.
Similar to that of Roland Garros, there won’t be much of stardust with the two of the biggest women singles names missing from the list. Expecting her first child, defending champions Serena Williams will be missing her second Grand Slam of the year while 2004 winner Maria Sharapova is still recovering after suffering an injury at Rome Open.
Nevertheless, it gives former champions — Venus Williams and Petra Kvitova — and the likes of Jelena Ostapenko and Anastasia Sevastova a chance to add another Grand Slam title to their career.
On the other hand top-ranked Angelique Kerber is most likely to start as the top-seeded player, French Open runner-up Simona Halep will eye for her maiden Grand Slam title after a disappointing loss to the 19-year old Ostapenko in Paris.
Furthermore, this edition will also sees 11 British players placed in the draw. However, it will be Johanna Konta, who after a rapid rise up in the rankings, will be aiming to end the barren British run.
The 2017 edition of the Wimbledon singles champions will receive £2.2 million each. Interestingly, the winner’s cheque for the men and women’s singles has been doubled since 2011 when Djokovic and Kvitova each took £1.1 million. Also, there is a 14.7 percent increase in the total contribution for men & women’s doubles.
So now, it is a matter of time to see whether it will be the old schools who will once again shine at the All England Club or it will be the dark horses who will stun everyone to win lift the trophy on July 16.