The third Grand Slam of the year, Wimbledon, will start on Monday, July 3rd. The grand finale will take place two weeks later, on Sunday, July 16th. Since the Sportsbookies editorial team comes up short as far as top players on the sacred grass are concerned, we brought in Sjoerd Valkering. Sjoerd is the CEO of Valkering Media and an avid tennis fan. In this interview, we look ahead to the tournament with Sjoerd. According to him, who are the favorites and the outsiders for this edition?
Hi Sjoerd!!! Wimbledon starts next week, what can we expect?
"It's difficult to gauge. Novak Djokovic has not participated in any grass tournaments, but he will likely be the favorite by a landslide. It's hard to say who else could take him on. Carlos Alcaraz won his first grass tournament last weekend, but the roster wasn't that strong, and a Grand Slam is always something else."
Does that mean the red carpet is already rolled out for Djokovic?
"I'm afraid so. If we look at the bookmakers, they are thinking the same with a quote of 1.67 for Djokovic to take home the title. Alcaraz is next in line with a quote of over 4 (4.50, ed.). On paper, there's no one who can threaten Djokovic. At my tennis club, they think Alcaraz is a big threat, but I doubt it. It was already 1-1 in sets in the semifinals at Roland Garros, which is Alcaraz's favorite surface style. In other words, on a different surface, Djokovic will have an even bigger advantage."
Who are the outsiders for the tournament victory?
"Let's hope 'King Kyrgios', as he's called on Instagram, gets into the groove of things. Ever since the Australian Open, the Australian was sidelined for months due to a knee injury. He also recently lost in the first round on grass (at the ATP tournament in Stuttgart, ed.), but he's incredibly strong on the green surface. He reached the finals last year for a reason. He's extremely talented and has a massive serve for grass. If he gets into a good rhythm in the tournament, I expect he will go far."
Are there any other candidates?
"Not really, haha. Jannik Sinner always has something going on, he keeps getting injured or having an off day. Stefanos Tsitsipas hasn't been consistent this season. Daniil Medvedev is the same, he's only good on hardcourt. Taylor Fritz could go far; he plays well on fast courts and is becoming more all-around. Matteo Berrettini is obviously dangerous on grass, but he has had little rhythm and suffered a lot of injuries. Sebastian Korda says he himself belongs to the favorites. Haha, he's a good player with a lot of talent, but he was laughed at on Tennis TV's Instagram page for making those statements."
You forgot Holger Rune?
"He has only performed well in a Grand Slam on clay, although he did reach the fourth round of the Australian Open in 2023. But on grass, he hasn't gotten further than the first round of Wimbledon in 2022. So he's definitely not a favorite."
Who will win in the women's category?
"Unfortunately, I don't follow that discipline. The pace in women's matches is so much slower, so I don't find it as exciting."
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