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Men’s Wimbledon Final

Murray (4) vs Federer (3)

Federer has the opportunity to catch Pete Sampras with a win tomorrow in a couple areas.  First he would tie him with 7 Wimbledon championships.  Second it would propel to #1 in the world in which he would tie Sampras for most weeks at #1 and then a week from Monday go past him. 

Murray is not only trying to break a long streak of a Brit not winning a major but trying to break that streak in the Brits home major.  He’s been in 3 major finals but so far has come up set-less dropping all 9.  Mind set will be key as the question is if he happens to lose the first set to make it ten straight, does he have the belief he can make a match of it and at the very least take his first set in a major final.  Will he succumb to the pressure of trying to break the streak or will the home crowd lift him up when needed.  I also like how his draw prepared him.  Tsonga, his semis opponent, is a big server like Federer and Murray’s return game is spot on.  It wasn’t the only big server he has faced the last two weeks and it has been a nice group of men to prepare yourself for needing a great day of returning against Federer. 

Obviously both men have played a fantastic tournament but so far I’m a little more impressed with Murray.  Federer had a weaker draw and while you can only play who is put in front of you, I like the fact Murray is more battle tested in the tournament.  Federer did beat Djokovic in the semis but it seems Djokovic may have been under the weather a bit which partly explains why he looked sluggish and emotionless. 

Federer has been here and done that and while on the wrong side of 30 for the tennis age, is going to be the favorite.  Murray still needs to break through and take that first set in a major final.  I feel the upset coming, the streak broken, and a massive celebration for the home crowd tomorrow.  I’m taking Murray to break through for his first major in four sets.  Sometimes he plays too passive against the top three men but this is where Lendl as his coach will come through and drill it in his head to be the aggressor.  The crowd will lift him on their shoulders when he is down.  Murray is ready to won that elusive major in his fourth final.

Women’s Wimbledon Final

S. Williams (6) vs A. Radwanska (3)

After 75 years, a Pole is in the women’s final again and for the first time in the Open Era.  It’s an incredible accomplishment and if Radwanska can win one more match not only is she a major champion but also would be world #1 on Monday.

The bad news is that Williams is on the other side and playing really well at a major she has won 4 times before.

The really bad news is word is she has a respiratory infection which will obviously put her behind the 8 ball. 

Radwanska hadn’t made a major SF until this tournament so busting all the way into the final is a great step forward.  It seems too much to ask for her to take it one farther falling ill so the common and obvious prediction is Williams in 2 sets quite comfortably.  But I’ll be cheering with every ounce hoping Aga can get the job done and climb to the very top of the tennis ladder.

Men’s Wimbledon Semi-Finals

Tsonga (5) vs Murray (4)

My initial reaction was to pick Tsonga for this match.  Then I did see some serving stats and say Murray wasn’t far behind and I thought Tsonga would have a huge edge there.  Both have had some tough matches of late and will come in battle tested.  Murray has shwon incrediable fight and if Tsonga isn’t having a monster serving day (like last year when he came from 2 sets down to beat Federer) then I’ll take Murray to wear him down.  Add in some extra push from the English crowd and I believe Murray takes it in 4.

Federer (3) vs Djokovic (1)

I was really shocked that Djokovic’s average first serve speed was 5 mph faster than Federer’s.  Placement is half the battle but placement is where I thought Djokovic made up some of the advantage I thought Federer had on speed.  Djokovic is playing so well I would be picking him anyway but now I like Federer’s chances less.  If Federer isn’t nailing his placement on serves, Djokovic’s return game will put pressure on him until he gets through enough times to win in 4 or maybe even 3.  I would love to see Federer try and put pressure on Djokovic’s return game by throwing in a decent amount of serve and volley.  Make him think and maybe he dumps a few more returns into the net or outside the lines.  If Federer doesn’t change things up, I think Djokovic wears him down and takes another victory.

Wimbledon Women’s Semi-Finals

Kerber (8) vs A. Radwanska (3)

First a side tangent.  Read that Kerber has Polish parents though she represents Germany.  Radwanska has Polish parents and former world #1 Wozniacki has Polish parents but represents Denmark where her father had gotten a job.  So as luck could have it, Poland which isn’t known for a hot bed of big time tennis players could right now have 3 top 8 players if things had fallen differently. 

So back on topic.  Radwanska finally breaks through to a major semi-final even though she had already climbed to number three in the world.  Many people have not considered her ranking to be validated yet because she had not reach this level yet.  Kerber after many years of very few results has exploded recently and is in her second semi-final in the last 4 majors. 

Both had tough 3 set matches in the QF after not dropping a set in the first 4 rounds.  This is a really even match up and I’m just going to go with my gut that Kerber wins.  I hope Radwanska had pull it off but she seemed really shaky trying to break through to the SF and if those nerves hit again, I think Kerber punches through.  Kerber absolutely destroyed Clijsters in the 4th round.

Radwanska has a chance to leave Wimbledon as the #1 player if she wins it all and Azarenka falls in the SF.

Williams (6) vs Azarenka (2)

Believe most people expect the winner of this match to be the huge favorite to win the final.  Both are expected to just over power the winner of the other SF so it may be the case that people almost consider this the true final.  I think the final will be closer than this one because Williams has dominated Azarenka badly and I think she will continue to do so.  She’s going to eat up Azarenka’s power and spit it back to her harder.  Hopefully it is closer than I expect so it will be a good one to listen to at work.

Welcome

Thanks for stopping by my blog.  I love tennis and writing so figured why not combine the both.  It is an odd pairing based on my natural abilities and where I grew up.  My natural abilities in school were always math and computers while I struggled with English classes.  I have no illusions that I am some great writing but I like to try and put my thoughts down and maybe someone else will stop by and enjoy them as well.  I grew up in a small town with no tennis team.  The town had two tennis courts and I believe it was about 5th grade when we had a physical education unit for about two weeks on tennis where we took a walk to the city park and learned about the wonderful game.  I was hooked by the one on one battle when all the sports I was used to playing were team games.  With no team and no town pro, it was learn by just trying to play.  I’ve been trying ever since and love every minute I spend on the court.

I’m probably more suited for a heavy statistical analysis on one of the sports I grew up being coached in an organized environment but while I still love those sports and have my favorite teams and players I can’t say I want to write about them all that much.  I do like stats as well but I don’t plan on breaking down matches by digging deep into them.   Stats are useful but it seems to be a crutch to always lean for some especially in other sports where fantasy participation of building your own team is a big reason some people enjoy those sports or maybe even the only reason.  It seems these days people really distrust the eye test and while that is not perfect either (and certainly not my eyes) I don’t believe for one second that stats can grasp everything so when you solely use stats you are certainly missing a big portion of the game.  I plan to write using the eye test as a basis for my thoughts and using stats as a helper.  Hopefully at least someone out there will enjoy it.  I love to follow both the ATP and WTA.

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