Closing Court 2 in singles on Monday is a fascinating matchup on the men’s side between Hubert Hurkacz and Daniil Medvedev. Medvedev remains in contention for the No.1 spot but that still does require an early and unlikely Djokovic exit. He will have his work cut out in this one against a Hurkacz who has finally returned to form.
Hurkacz was holding a six match losing streak coming into Wimbledon but has bounced back in style. He is the only player in the tournament to have not dropped serve with 42 straight holds and just as impressively, only four break points faced. While it hasn’t been the toughest draw so far, dealing with Alexander Bublik in particular with such ease was fairly impressive.
Medvedev looked to be on his way out, down two sets to a suddenly peaking Marin Cilic. He would eventually pull it out 6-7 3-6 6-3 6-3 6-2 but not before adding an extra drama by failing to close out the match from 5-0 40-0. The Russian was a bit of an unknown quantity on grass before this year but his Mallorca title suggested there was a lot of promise. “It was an unbelievable match,” Medvedev said. “It was the first time I came back from two sets down to win. What is amazing is two times here in Wimbledon, I was two sets down and two times I came back and had a break in the fifth set and lost the match.
Hurkacz’s serving should ensure this one doesn’t get away from him too quickly but he is going to have a hard time the longer the match goes as Medvedev draws him into longer and more gruelling rallies. Medvedev will be wise to the style of Hurkacz having seen off both Struff and now Cilic in the tournament. A potential Medvedev-Federer quarter final looks fascinating should they both get there with the former champion being able to provide a better idea of how much the No.2 seed has improved on the surface.
Prediction – Daniil Medvedev in four sets