Wimbledon Day 8 Preview: The Ladies’ Quarterfinals - UBITENNIS
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Grand Slam

Wimbledon Day 8 Preview: The Ladies’ Quarterfinals

With the top five seeds failing to reach the ladies’ quarterfinals for the second straight year, is Serena Williams now the favourite to claim her eighth ladies’ singles championship?




Serena Williams (@SI_Tennis - Twitter)

By Matthew Marolf


Perhaps she is, but that outcome is anything but certain. Serena has only played 16 matches in 2019 as she’s battled injuries. She appears healthy now, though she’s still lacking match play, and not as quick around the court at the age of 37. While the other seven women remaining only combine for one Major singles title, they include some considerable grass court threats.

Serena Williams (11) vs. Alison Riske

In what many referred to as the “quarter of death,” the draw has actually opened up quite nicely for Serena. Ash Barty, Angelique Kerber, and Garbine Muguruza all went out early, and Serena won’t have to defeat a top 16 seed to reach the final. Her form has drastically improved as this fortnight has progressed, easily taking her last two matches in straight sets.

Her 29-year-old countrywoman is into her first Major quarterfinal, compared to Serena’s tally of 51. This is Riske’s 30th appearance in a Slam singles draw, and 21 of those times she went out in the first round. Of Ali’s 19 Major match wins, 11 have come at Wimbledon. She arrived at SW19 with a lot of confidence, having won a grass court title in s-Hertogenbosch last month.

Riske has needed four three-setters to reach this stage, three times coming back from a set down. Her upset on Monday over world No.1 Ash Barty was most impressive, but coming back just 24 hours after the best win of your career to play the GOAT on Centre Court will be a tremendous challenge. But if she emotionally recovers and isn’t overwhelmed by the occasion, Riske has the grass court tools to push Serena. However, in their first career meeting, Serena is the favorite to advance to her 37th Major semi-final.

Simona Halep (7) vs. Shuai Zhang

Simona Halep (@TennisChannel – Twitter)

Zhang was 0-5 at The Championships prior to this year, but has now matched her best result at a Major, as she was a surprise quarterfinalist in Australia three years ago. She upset two seeded players named Caroline, in Garcia and Wozniacki, to get here. And the 30-year-old from China holds a 2-1 edge over Halep, having claimed both of their last two matches on hard courts.

As Rennae Stubbs highlighted on ESPN in the US, Shuai can aggressively attack Simona’s weak second serves with her great backhand. But Halep obviously has a lot more experience in a match of this significance, and took apart her last two opponents, Victoria Azarenka and Coco Gauff. This could be an extended affair, but I like Simona’s chances to reach her first Wimbledon semi-final since 2014.

Elina Svitolina (8) vs. Karolina Muchova

What an effort by Muchova to upset one of the tournament favourites yesterday in Karolina Pliskova. The third seed twice served for the match, but the 22-year-old survived and was able to break right before the final set tiebreak would have occurred, taking the match 13-11 in the third. But after the equivalent of four gruelling sets of combat, it’s hard to imagine Muchova having much left today in her first Slam quarterfinal. And despite a prolonged first set on Monday against Petra Martic, Svitolina pulled away in the second, and should be fully fresh on Tuesday.

The eighth seed took their only previous meeting earlier this year in Doha. However, the biggest factor here will likely be Elina’s nerves. The 2018 WTA Finals champion is now into her fifth quarterfinal at a Major, but is yet to win one. And she’s suffered some heart-breaking losses in this round, most notably to Halep at the 2017 French Open where she gave up a huge lead and even held a match point. She’ll be a huge favourite here against an unproven and exhausted opponent, though that will only create more pressure for Svitolina. And grass has been Elina’s worst surface in her career, as she actually had a losing record at The All England Club ahead of this year. While I expect Svitolina will make this a complicated affair, I do think she’ll finally breakthrough to her first Slam semi-final over an exhausted opponent.

Johanna Konta (19) vs. Barbora Strycova

Johanna Konta is back. The British No.1 struggled to win matches following her first Major semi-final here two years ago. But Jo is now into her second consecutive Slam semi-final after impressive comeback victories over both Sloane Stephens and Petra Kvitova. Her opponent is a veteran 33-year-old who came into this tournament with just as many wins as losses on the season.

But after completing the Bertens/Mertens back-to-back upset combo, Strycova is into her second Slam quarterfinal, equalling her result here from five years ago. Barbora has admitted this could be her last Wimbledon, and if so, what a way to go out. And while she will be the underdog today, she is 1-0 versus Konta, having caught Jo during her post-Wimbledon 2017 slump.  As challenging as Strycova’s game can be on a grass court, Konta should make her way to her second Wimbledon semi-final in three years.

Other notable matches on Day 8:

In the second round of mixed doubles on Centre Court, Andy Murray and Serena Williams vs. Fabrice Martin and Raquel Atawo (14).

In the quarterfinals of gentlemen’s doubles on No.1 Court, Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo (1) vs. Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin (11).

In the quarterfinals of ladies’ doubles on No.2 Court, Timea Babos and Kiki Mladenovic (1) vs. Nicole Melichar and Kveta Peshke (7).

Grand Slam

US Open 2022: Djokovic, Medvedev Early Favorites but Will the Serb Be Allowed to Compete?





Wimbledon was a great success for the World’s No.1 ranked Novak Djokovic, as the Serbian star claimed another Grand Slam title. However, with the grass season officially behind us, tennis enthusiasts are looking towards the US Open. 


The Hard Court season is around the corner, and the usual suspects are topping the bookmaker’s odds to win the final Grand Slam of the season – the US Open – which will take place at Flushing Meadows, New York City. 

US Open 2022 betting odds & favorites to win it all 

To the surprise of nobody, Djokovic is topping the current US Open tennis odds at Caesars sportsbook New York as he looks to finish the Grand Slam season with another success added to his resume. 

Daniil Medvedev is the second favorite to win the competition, and Carlos Alcaraz is the third betting favorite. Interestingly, Rafael Nadal – all-time record holder with 22 Grand Slam titles – is currently priced at +660, making him an outsider to the aforementioned players. 

Tennis fans eagerly anticipated a meeting between Djokovic and Nadal in the Wimbledon finals, but the Spaniard was forced out of the competition due to an injury. A US Open final meeting between the two most successful ranked tennis stars is undoubtedly a match we’re all craving, but can Nadal prove the sportsbooks wrong and battle his way into another final? 

With less than a month until the first round begins, here are the latest available odds to win the US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, taking place between Aug 29 – Sep 11, 2022.      

Players Odds to win the US Open outright 
Novak Djokovic +150 
Danill Medvedev +225
Carlos Alcaraz Garfia+350
Rafael Nadal +550
Stefanos Tsitsipas +1,200 
Alexander Zverev +1,400 
Matteo Berrettini+1,600
Jannik Sinner +1,800 
Felix Auger-Aliassime +2,000
Andrey Rublev +2,500
Taylor Fritz +2,500 
Dominic Thiem +2,800
Denis Shapovalov +3,500 
Miomir Kecmanovic +3,500
Nick Kyrgios +3,500
Hubert Hurkacz +4,000 
Jenson Brooksby +4,000 
Cameron Norrie +4,000 
Casper Ruud +4,000 
Roger Federer +5,000 

Despite owning the favorable betting position to win the US Open outright, Djokovic remains unvaccinated. The current regulations state that non-US citizens must be vaccinated to compete in the US, so he’s ineligible to play. 

Djokovic hasn’t given up hope

The unvaccinated tennis stand-out was removed from the Australian Open in January, as the government declared he’d disobeyed strict Covid-19 regulations. 

The 35-year-old is now facing a similar fate at Flushing Meadows but has insisted on continuing his US Open training camp. 

As it currently stands, Djokovic won’t play at the US Open. Still, the Serbian star remains hopeful and recently took to social media with a video clip of himself preparing for the tournament. 

I am preparing as if I will be allowed to compete while I await to hear if there is any room for me to travel to the US,’ Djokovic wrote on Twitter. 
‘Fingers crossed!’ 

After posting a video of himself preparing, fans showed their support in abundance with the hashtag #LetNovakPlay. 

Further support for the Serbian star has continued with a petition on Change.Org. As of Saturday morning, close to 45,000 people had signed the petition requesting the US Tennis Association and the federal government to agree for Djokovic to gain entry into the US. 

‘I just wanted to take a moment and say to all of you how grateful I am to see so many messages of support and love from all around the world these days,’ Djokovic wrote to his fans. 
‘It feels special that people connect with my tennis career in such a loving and supportive way and wish for me to continue to compete.’ 

Several US politicians have expressed their opinions on the matter and have insisted that US President Joe Biden ease the rules so that Djokovic can participate at the upcoming Open. 

American politicians aren’t the only ones speaking up against Biden’s rules. The Serbia-American Voting Alliance (SAVA) has also written a letter asking the President to reconsider the regulations preventing Djokovic from competing in the United States. It read, “The US Open is the biggest tennis tournament in the world, and it won’t be what it is without Novak Djokovic. 
“Considering the economic situation and the crisis at all levels, America must not allow the US Open not to take place in its full glory and capacity, which means the arrival of Novak Djokovic, who has been crowned three times at the US Open, Novak does not pose any security threat, is one of the healthiest people in the world due to his disciplined life and serves as a role model and inspiration to millions around the world. 
“It is in America’s interest that the biggest tournament in the world hosts the best player in the world, especially since he just won the seventh Wimbledon in London.”  

Should the restriction be removed, Djokovic has the opportunity to level Rafael Nadal for the most Grand Slam titles of all time (22). 

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Grand Slam

McEnroe Labels Novak Djokovic’s Possible US Open Ban As ‘Crazy’

The American tennis great says he ‘respects’ Djokovic’s decision not to get vaccinated against covid-19.




Novak Djokovic at the 2021 Rolex Paris Masters (Credit: Roberto Dell'Olivo)

John McEnroe says he is hoping that a solution can be found for Novak Djokovic to play at the US Open later this year.


As it currently stands 21-time Grand Slam champion Djokovic will not be allowed to play in New York due to government rules related to the entry of unvaccinated individuals. To travel to America, visitors are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they qualify for a special exemption. Djokovic has not been jabbed and stated after his Wimbledon triumph that he is not planning to do so. 

On Wednesday the United States Tennis Association (USTA) issued their entry lists for the US Open which also included Djokovic in the men’s draw. However, they also posted a statement confirming that they will ‘respect’ the American government’s rules concerning unvaccinated players. 

“The US Open does not have a vaccination mandate in place for players, but it will respect the U.S. government’s position regarding travel into the country for unvaccinated non-U.S. citizens,” the USTA said. 

Weighing in on the debate, former world No.1 McEnroe described the prospect of Djokovic missing the US Open as ‘crazy’ during an interview with Tennis 365. The Serbian has won four out of the last seven Grand Slam tournaments. He missed this year’s Australian Open following a high-profile legal dispute over the legitimacy of his visa which resulted in his deportation.

“We have to find a way to get Novak into the US Open,” said McEnroe. “How can he not be there? He has just won Wimbledon, he is a great champion and he should be in the US Open.
“I don’t agree with his decision not to get vaccinated, but I respect it. He is one of the fittest guys in the world and everything he puts into his body, he is watching carefully.
“Now we are saying that because of his choice, he can’t play at the US Open. I mean, come on. He has already been deported from Australia for the same reason and here we are again.
“I hope someone finds a way to sort this out. It’s crazy that Novak misses the US Open at this stage.”

Djokovic has won the US Open three times in his career with his most recent triumph occurring in 2018. He also won the title in 2011 and 2015. The 35-year-old was also runner-up at the tournament on six other occasions.

Should he be unsuccessful in trying to enter America, it is unclear when Djokovic will play his next tournament. He has previously hinted that he could feature in the Laver Cup that will take place in September. 

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Grand Slam

US Open: Unvaccinated Novak Djokovic On Entry List But Former Champion Thiem Is Missing




Novak Djokovic (SRB) - Credit: AELTC/Simon Bruty

Novak Djokovic has automatically entered himself to play at this year’s US Open even though there is a strong chance that he will not be allowed to participate. 


The 21-time Grand Slam champion has been included in the provisional entry list which was published on Wednesday. However, organizers confirmed that they will ‘respect’ the US Government’s rules on the admission of vaccinated individuals into the country. As it currently stands those who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 are not allowed to enter the country unless they qualify for a special exemption. 

“The US Open does not have a vaccination mandate in place for players, but it will respect the U.S. government’s position regarding travel into the country for unvaccinated non-U.S. citizens,” the USTA said in a statement. 

Djokovic is one of those who are not vaccinated against the virus. Following his win over Nick Kyrgios in the Wimbledon final, the former world No.1 stated that he still has no intention of being jabbed. Even though it could result in his missing a series of key Masters 1000 events across the summer, as well as the US Open. Djokovic has previously said he is cautious about injecting substances into his body due to concerns about how he may react. The COVID-19 vaccination has been deemed safe by the World Health Organization. 

“I’m not vaccinated and I’m not planning to get vaccinated so the only good news I can have is them removing the mandated green vaccine card or whatever you call it to enter the United States or exemption,” Djokovic told reporters at Wimbledon. “I don’t know. I don’t think the exemption is realistically possible. If that is a possibility, I don’t know what exemption would be about.”

As Djokovic hopes for a change in the law for him to play, 2020 champion Dominic Thiem will be relying on receiving a wild card for him to participate. The Austrian has decided not to join the entry list with the use of his protected ranking. Thiem was unable to defend his title last year due to a right wrist injury which ended up sidelining him from the Tour for months. 

Elsewhere, a trio of former top 20 players are using their protected ranking to join the field. Stan Wawrinka, Borna Coric and Kyle Edmund are all using their passes. Wawrinka and Coric have both started their comeback from injury but Edmund hasn’t played a singles tournament since October 2020. Aljaz Bedene, who is set to retire from the Sport at the end of this season, is also using his protected ranking. 

Williams joins the women’s field

In the women’s tournament, Serena Williams has used her protected ranking of 16th to join the field. The American recently played her first tournament for 12 months at Wimbledon where she lost in the first round to France’s Harmony Tan. Williams, who is one major title away from equalling Margaret Court’s record of 24, has also entered herself into other tournaments leading up to the US Open. 

Reigning champion Emma Raducanu is 10th on the list and will be hoping to repeat her heroics from last year where as a qualifier she won 10 matches in a row without dropping a set en route to the title. Since then, the Brit hasn’t featured in another Tour final and has been hampered by various physical issues. 

Raducanu and Williams are two out of six former US Open champions on the entry list. The others are Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber, Sloane Stephens and Bianca Andreescu. 

Venus Williams, who last won the tournament back in 2001, isn’t on the list. However, she could enter via wild card if she is given one. 

The 2022 US Open main draw will begin on August 29th. The full list of men’s entries can be seen HERE and the women’s HERE

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