While favourites in the Women’s draw have been going down, there has been little excitement in the men’s draw. Aside from Andy Murray toughing out a 4 setter against Fabio Fognini on Friday night, there has been little danger for the big four. Roger Federer closes out the scheduled centre court action against the 29th seed, Mischa Zverev. Having beaten Murray in Australia, Zverev will hope to pick up another statement win but the odds appear very slim against the Wimbledon favourite.
After playing half a match in round one, Federer had a bit more of a workout in round two. However, it was never much of a contest against Dusan Lajovic. He hit 30 winners in a 7-6 6-2 6-3 win over the Serbian. “I think the courts were playing quite fast today because of the heat. Then I played a great breaker. I think from then on I never looked back. Got early breaks in sets 2 and 3 and was able to protect my serve in a good way. Never really found ways to get into my service games on first and second serves.” Federer said after the match, happy with his days work.
Zverev’s first match of the tournament attracted a lot of attention – but not for the reasons he would have liked. The opponent he beat in straight sets, Bernard Tomic, made comments about his lack of motivation in press. There was no such focus on his round two with Zverev winning in 5 sets against Mikhail Kukushkin. The German does have a decent traditional grass game, which you can see by the fact he came to net 100 times in his win over the Kazakh. He may however want to improve on the 53% win rate on those points against a tougher opponent.
It has been a career year for Zverev and a new high ranking may be on the cards depending on the rest of the draw. He is currently projected to be 27th although could be overtaken still by a number of players. The German is 0-4 against Federer in his career, losing twice this year. One of them was in straight sets at the Australian Open and the other a 7-6 6-4 loss at Halle, a major improvement in his 6-0 6-0 defeat at the same tournament 4 years prior. “I think that’s the biggest switch always when you play against an opponent who is left-handed, that whole swinging serve, kicking serve, especially getting used to the returning, you know, is most important.” Federer said of his opponent.
Prediction – Roger Federer in straight sets