The Championships, Wimbledon II - Gentlemen's Singles
- Sunday (Rest Day) - Wimbledon,
United Kingdom - Grass
With both the singles and the doubles teams taking a well-earned rest, we'll quickly preview Monday's eight fourth round showdowns.
Tom Vollan NOR vs. 23-Heath Davis FRC
Talk about a fourth round matchup no one expected. Davis has been absolute dynamite this week, though he's been monstering players of less ability than him for sure. He's yet to drop a set, and meets a player who has dropped at least one in each of his three matches so far. The plus for the Norwegian is that he holds a victory over the World No. 1, but on the back of a pretty taxing showdown with Ion Andueza he might find it tough. The weekend break will help him, and it will clearly be a question of who serves best in the battle of the big men. Prediction: Davis in four. Markets: Davis $1.50, Vollan $2.46.
16-Jojo Mustard FRC vs. 6-József Boros HUN
József Boros continues to perform admirably on the grass after finally producing a pretty good display in the third round against Jarkko Maxum after a scratchy win in the second round against Gunther Heug. Mustard, meanwhile, was forced to come from two sets down to oust nineteenth seed Oneil Stewart in a gutsy performance and will no doubt takes bundles of confidence from that win. Boros, though, is an all-courter - last year he beat the likes of Morgan Carter and Henry Charles before succumbing to Jason Hall in the quarter finals, and he has had a lot more time to recover than Mustard who also competes in the doubles. That could be decisive. Prediction: Boros in five. Markets: Boros $1.63, Mustard $2.18.
4-Darcy Cowan USA vs. 10-Dwayne Murdoch USA
The defending champion has dropped just one set this week, and finally put his best foot forward with a 6-0, 6-0, 6-3 mauling of British journeyman Roger Warren in the third round. Now he faces his biggest task yet - Dwayne Murdoch is a serial pest in Grand Slams and has tasted the quarter finals already having lost to Radek Spidla last season. The two are very different players - Murdoch loves the baseline and plays a more versatile game while Cowan can at times rely too heavily on his big serve. That being said, he's 10-0 at Wimbledon and has really started to click into gear. Murdoch starts as an outsider and probably deserves to as Cowan should edge this one in four sets. Prediction: Cowan in four. Markets: Cowan $1.59, Murdoch $2.26.
21-Davis Kennedy CAN vs. 26-Morgan Carter USA
It was one of the upsets of the third round, but Canadian 21st seed Davis Kennedy was ultimately too good for Season I semi finalist Zoltán Varga. After a horrendous run with injuries this season, this is the Kennedy we are familiar with and in Carter he has a great chance to make the quarters. Carter produced some solid tennis to oust Rob Bowenburg and is riding high after taking the Eastbourne title. Kennedy came through his first real test unscathed, but we still wonder what the Canadian's fitness is like as we move into the second week. As a result, we go with safety first. Prediction: Carter in four. Markets: Carter $1.83, Kennedy $1.89.
8-Jefferson Drake CDR vs. Javier Villaneuva ESP
For the second Slam running, Villaneuva finds himself in the round of 16 against all odds. His 6-2, 6-4, 6-1 mauling of Patrick Pascaul stunned pundits, and he's only dropped the one set this week - the first against Carlo Amato. Drake has also dropped the one set, but came through a tight second round meeting to bookend his first week with big victories. You suspect he's only just warming up, though he plays a similar style to Pascaul. If Villaneuva wants to win, he needs to take advantage of Drake's notoriously slow starts. I suspect he can, but I don't think he will. Prediction: Drake in three. Markets: Drake $1.35, Villaneuva $3.02.
Christopher Durand FRA vs. 3-Radek pidlá CZE
Radek pidlá was almost unbackable to win last year's Wimbledon yet somehow found a way to lose it. He's gone through the first week without dropping a set and, despite an injury concern leading into Wimbledon, is on the second line of betting behind Cowan. Durand will no doubt benefit from this week in financial terms, but his scalps look unimpressive - Bre, Day and Narang are hardly on the same level as pidlá on grass. Prediction: pidlá in three. Markets: pidlá $1.04, Durand $9.50.
5-Sven Oxenstierna FRC vs. 15-Diego Hurtado COL
Diego Hurtado's name is basically mud here at the All England Club after the Colombian came back from the dead to oust Henry Charles in five sets. He's dropped at least one set in all his matches so far, but has clearly improved on grass since his Season I loss to Charles in the second round (4-6, 0-6, 6-3, 1-6). The Colombian faces another player who isn't particularly comfortable on grass; The Ox won Halle impressively, but was beaten in the opening round at Rosmalen. His first week was fairly uninspiring with no convincing victories. There could be an upset brewing. Prediction: Hurtado in five. Markets: Oxenstierna $1.72, Hurtado $2.04.
12-Rick Henson USA vs. 2-Daniel Páez Blanco ESP
There aren't really many matches to look forward to as much as this one as we finally put to the test Blanco's grass ability against Henson's fitness. Henson has never really found his feet on the PTA Tour after a couple of bad injuries, but showed great composure to clinically dispose of the inform Chinese player Zhijun Sun on Saturday (6-4, 6-1, 6-2). Blanco also had a straight sets win against David Champion (7-6(3), 7-5, 6-0) and it was clearly his best performance after two scratchy wins over qualifiers. This is Henson's real chance, and on grass he won't blow it. Prediction: Henson in four. Markets: Henson $1.78, Blanco $1.90.
DAVIS vs. BOROS
COWAN vs. CARTER
DRAKE vs. SPIDLA
HURTADO vs. HENSON