Novak Djokovic looks to book his place for Manic Monday on Friday afternoon, taking on the Pole Hubert Hurkacz for a spot in the last 16. The defending champion could face the highly touted youngster Felix Auger Aliassime there if both win their next matches.
Hurkacz’s rise up the rankings hit a roadblock at the French Open, with him having the misfortune to draw Djokovic in round one. It will have been a disappointment for the Pole who would have fancied his chances of winning a few rounds with a kinder route. He has the kind of game you would expect from someone that is 6ft5, but is now becoming more consistent which shows in his 2019 results. He beat Dusan Lajovic and Leonardo Mayer to get to this stage, both wins coming in straight sets.
While Djokovic has looked impressive in his two wins over Philipp Kohlschreiber and Denis Kudla, that hasn’t been the story this week as the ATP Players Council controversy rolls on with the World No.1 at the centre of it. Several players have resigned with a split in the council over those aligned with the now ousted Justin Gimelstob and those against him.
Djokovic will be eager to get back on court and move one step closer to another Wimbledon that he is favoured to win. While his success at Wimbledon is nearing that of his favoured Australian Open, he doesn’t think there is anything specific about Wimbledon that sees him perform so well. “Consistency was one of the keys and focus points of my Grand Slam career going back 10 years. I always aim to play my best in Grand Slams. The quality of tennis that I produce in the Slams is pretty high. That’s what allows me to have the results like this,” Djokovic said. He won 6-4 6-2 6-2 against Hurkacz in Paris and will hope to ease through in similar circumstances here. Hurkacz’s best hope would seem to be in nicking a tiebreak but out outlasting the Serbian over 5 long sets seems a near impossible ask.
Prediction – Novak Djokovic in straight sets