The biggest surprise of Wimbledon 2022 is Tim van Rijthoven, who with today's win against Nikoloz Basilashvili qualified for the round of 16 at his first appearance in the main draw of a Grand Slam and starting as a wild card.
Only one set lost, against Reilly Opelka, in the three rounds played so far for the 25-year-old Dutchman, who will have to pass the tough exam called Novak Djokovic to follow up on what would be an incredible dream. "Before the tournament started, it was a dream for me to play against him," said van Rijthoven in the press conference after the match against Basilashvili.
"The fact that I can now have this opportunity, even if we can play on Central or on Wimbledon Court no. 1, is something as beautiful as it is magical. I am a player who goes to every game thinking he can win. I will also do it against Djokovic, I will go to that match with the confidence of being able to win the match."
Van Rijhtoven: "I'm riding the wave, we'll see where it ends"
He also added: "From the outside it looks like a fairy tale, it's normal, for many people it's like it came out of nowhere.
Even my ATP 250 title, at 's-Hertogenbosch in the final against Daniil Medvedev, seemed to have come out of nowhere, as I had never won a Challenger title before. I've played some finals, but the level is still very high. The summary is basically what I have already said: work very hard, never lose hope and finally feel that positive vibe when training and playing.
That's all that's happening to me right now, I'm riding the wave, we'll see where it ends up." These are the words full of hope from Tim van Rijthoven, who also revealed what, according to him, is his best weapon: "I would say the serve, it's the shot that works the most for me, it's a fantastic thing.
In the last eight matches, speaking from memory, I think I've only been broken a couple of times, so from the serve I can start setting up the rest of my game. I like to be aggressive, play a lot of shots with the forehand, but I also like to slice. I think all these sensations are very special here on the grass."
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