Wimbledon Preview: Alcaraz favorite, Djokovic 'deus ex machina'

The Serbian champion can do anything if his physical conditions are recovered. Draw hard for Sinner

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Wimbledon Preview: Alcaraz favorite, Djokovic 'deus ex machina'
© Clive Brunskill / Staff Getty Images Sport

The Wimbledon draw was difficult for Jannik Sinner. The new ATP No.1, which will lead the seeding of the Championships, found itself faced with an overall difficult draw full of pitfalls, right from the first rounds. Novak Djokovic's situation is complex. The Serbian champion, drawn in the bottom half, can really do anything, like a deus ex machina. But this will all depend fundamentally on his physical condition.

Jannik SInner
Jannik SInner© Clive Brunskill / Staff Getty Images Sport

Will he have recovered from meniscus surgery in such a short time? Will he be fully mentally recovered after a season full of disappointments? If at Wimbledon Djokovic (where he triumphed 7 times) will come back the real Djokovic we all know well, I believe that the chances for his opponents are ZERO, it is worth underlining this. Not even the best Sinner or the best Carlos Alcaraz could worry him. Roger Federer's 8 titles (record) are a great stimulus for the Serbian champion, who is, on the eve of the tournament, the biggest unknown.

At the moment the favorite is Alcaraz. Carlitos, defending champion, comes from the triumph at Roland Garros. His tennis finds a perfect habitat on grass court and his possible semi-final with Sinner could only be an appetizer of what could be his tournament, which would go towards a natural second consecutive title at Church Road. But in tennis nothing is ever linear or obvious, so my analysis is only valid until Monday, then the Championships lawns will give us the answers.

Sinner's journey, as mentioned, will be decidedly tough and full of pitfalls. After his debut with the German Yannick Hanfmann, the 22 year old could immediately meet Matteo Berrettini in a truly fascinating second round. Berrettini will first have to overcome the Hungarian Fucsovics to ensure an unprecedented battle on the Wimbledon grass against his countryman. The potential eighth would be with Ben Shelton, while in the quarterfinals there are Daniil Medvedev or Grigor Dimitrov.

Carlos Alcaraz was also included in the top-half of the main draw and, therefore, will be able to face Sinner in the semi-final. An adventure, in the first rounds, decidedly easier for the Spaniard, who chose Casper Ruud as a hypothetical player to challenge in the quarterfinals but also the new Queen's winner Tommy Paul, one of the real dangers for all the participants in the London tournament.

Apart from the first two-three rounds, not even the path Novak Djokovic will be expected to follow is very easy. The Serb will have the opportunity to conserve precious energy in view of more complicated challenges, such as a round of 16 final against Holger Rune and a very complicated quarter final against the Pole Hubert Hurkacz. In the semi-final there are many rivals to keep an eye on: Andrey Rublev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev, who, however, will have to be very careful about the loose cannons present, which could provide the real surprises of the event.

Wimbledon Alcaraz