| By Robbie Werdiger
Photo Credit: Getty Images/PaulMaguire

 

Favorites

 

Roger Federer — Roger Federer is coming into the 2019 Wimbledon Championships looking to capture his 9th career title on the famed grass courts of London and his 21st Grand Slam overall. After a successful return to the clay that saw him reach the French Open semifinals, and a 10th title in Halle to begin his grass court swing, the graceful Swiss legend arrives at the tournament he has dominated for nearly two decades and is a favorite, even at the age of 37.

Novak Djokovic​ — The defending champion played flawless tennis last year en route to the fourth Wimbledon title of his career. That came in the midst of a dominant year for him, where he came close to repeating the Novak Slam, which he did back in 2016. Now fully healthy, rested and in top form, Djokovic will be a tough opponent for anyone to beat over the Wimbledon fortnight, and especially coming off a tough loss in the French Open semifinals, look for the Serb to redeem himself in the year’s third major.

Rafael Nadal​ — The two-time Wimbledon champ has been upset a handful of times in the early rounds of the tournament over the past seven years, however, last year it looked like Rafa regained his grass court form. He lost an epic five-set semifinal to eventual champion Djokovic, and fresh off a dominant run to his 12th French Open title, will try to make the seamless transition to grass.

 

 


Sleepers

 

Milos Raonic — The big-serving Canadian has a game that is perfectly suited for the grass surface. Having previously made a Wimbledon final, Raonic is a threat, and is currently flying under the radar thanks in part to the injury bug that his bitten him over the last year. After three months off the court to heal from a back injury, Raonic returned to play in Stuttgart and the Fever-Tree Championships in London to get himself ready for Wimbledon. He’s made a deep run at this tournament before, and with his health back in check, look for Raonic to surprise some folks.

Felix Auger-Aliassime — Raonic’s compatriot, young phenom Felix Auger-Aliassime, is a name that only serious tennis fans may recognize, but will be one that most sports fans will come to know soon. Just 18-years-old, he is enjoying a breakout season that has seen him on grass, including a run to the Stuttgart finals and the semifinals at the Fever-Tree Championships. Depending on whether he can get a favorable draw, the teenager may make a push into the second week of the slam.

Matteo Berrettini — The 23-year-old Italian burst onto the scene out of nowhere over the last year, and is making his mark on the tour, having climbed up to No. 22 in the world in a matter of months. After racking up a title in Stuttgart and getting to the semifinals of Halle, Berrettini is a good bet to pull off a major upset and surprise some people in the early rounds of Wimbledon.

 


Deep Sleepers

Nick Kyrgios — ​Nick Kyrgios has been in the headlines for all the wrong seasons this season, and seems to be a mess mentally. Failing to provide full effort during matches, Kyrgios has had little success in 2019 besides a title in Acapulco, and has mostly been on the highlight reel for throwing rackets or chairs. However, the Australian is still one of the most talented players on tour and a solid grass court player. If he gets matched up with a top seed, expect him to play motivated tennis and be a tricky opponent.

Feliciano Lopez — ​The two-time Wimbledon quarter finalist is heading into the championships with momentum after triumphing at Queens’ Club for the second time in his career. The lefty Spaniard has the talent on grass to pull off some good wins, and just won both the singles and doubles title at the Fever-Tree Championships, so he will be carrying momentum into Wimbledon.



Pretenders

 

Dominic Thiem — ​The Prince of Clay encounters a quick and tough transition onto the grass surface, which may spell trouble for him. Thiem’s game does not play well on the grass, and he is therefore not a contender. Coming off an exhausting, both physically and mentally, run at the French Open, that transition only gets harder.

Fabio Fognini — ​The Italian won his first Masters title this year at Monte Carlo, but don’t expect him to make a strong push at Wimbledon. His best showing in his career has been the third round, making it the Grand Slam where he has had the least success.

Alex Zverev — Alexander Zverev still struggles to live up to expectations and has taken early exits this grass court season, to Dustin Brown and David Goffin at Stuttgart and Halle, respectively. Coming into Wimbledon with an inconsistent serve and shaky confidence, it is doubtful that the face of German tennis will live up to his seeding at this major.

Stefanos Tstsipas — Since his heartbreaking loss to Stan Wawrinka at the French Open, the Greek Freak of tennis looks uncomfortable on grass. He has disappointed with a first round exit at S-Hertogenbosch, and quarterfinal loss at the Queens’s Club. It’s going to take some time for Tsitsipas to get comfortable on the grass, and the No. 6 player in the world is unlikely to make a run into the second week this year.

For individual match predictions, visit  ​www.insidethenumbersoftennis.com throughout the 2019 Wimbledon Championships.

 

Robbie Werdiger

Robbie Werdiger is a senior at Horace Mann School in New York City. As a captain on his high school tennis team, Robbie has received team MVP and has been awarded the First Team all Ivy award two times at the first and second singles positions. Individually, Robbie has competed on the national junior stage and has achieved USTA rankings of top 25 in the eastern section in numerous age groups. Additionally, Robbie has represented team USA at the world Maccabiah Games in Israel in 2017, the third largest international sporting event in the world.