Wimbledon Daily Preview: Monday’s Rain Makes for a Teeming Tuesday of Tennis - UBITENNIS
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Wimbledon Daily Preview: Monday’s Rain Makes for a Teeming Tuesday of Tennis



Centre Court’s roof was utilized throughout much of Monday’s play (wimbledon.com/AELTC/Thomas Lovelock)

With many of Day 1’s 64 matches not completed, Day 2’s Order of Play is jam-packed with 80 matches around the grounds.  And with rain again possible on Tuesday, the tournament is at risk of falling further behind schedule.


Centre Court on Tuesday sees world No.1 Ash Barty open play in the spot normally reserved for the defending ladies’ singles champion, but unfortunately Simona Halep was forced to withdraw due to injury.  Barty will face Carla Suarez Navarro, who just recently announced she is cancer-free after being diagnosed last year with Hodgkin Lymphoma.  They are joined on Centre Court by the most decorated duo of No.6 and No.7 seeds in history: 23-time Major singles champion Serena Williams, and 20-time champ Roger Federer.

Each day of the fortnight, this preview will highlight the five most intriguing matchups, while outlining the other notable matches on the schedule.   Tuesday’s play will begin at 11:00am local time on all outer courts, 1:00pm on No.1 Court, and 1:30pm on Centre Court.

Ash Barty (1) vs. Carla Suarez Navarro – 1:30pm on Centre Court

This will be Barty’s first match since retiring during the second round of Roland Garros due to a left hip injury, meaning she hasn’t played a match on grass since this event two years ago.  And Suarez Navarro has only played one match on any surface since returning from her cancer battle.  Carla has announced she will retire after this summer’s US Open, so this could very well be her last match at Wimbledon.  This will be their first career meeting.   Despite her recent injury, Barty is a strong favorite on grass, especially considering the Spaniard’s lack of match play.  Regardless, it will certainly be a special moment to watch Suarez Navarro walk onto the sport’s most prestigious court so shortly after being declared cancer-free.

Roger Federer (7) vs. Adrian Mannarino – Second on Centre Court

The last time Federer stepped onto Centre Court, he squandered two championship points in the fifth set of the 2019 final, eventually going down in defeat to Novak Djokovic in the tournament’s first-ever 12-all tiebreak.  After undergoing two knee surgeries last year, he’s only played eight matches, with a record of 5-3.  Roger went just 1-1 two weeks ago in Halle, playing at a subpar level in a straight-set defeat at the hands of Felix Auger-Aliassime.  His preparation for this event has been far from ideal, but the eight-time champion remains a heavy favorite against Mannarino, who celebrates his 33rd birthday on Tuesday.  Federer is 6-0 against the Frenchman, and has only lost one of 16 sets they’ve played.  Roger has twice defeated Adrian in straight sets at The Championships, and while the left-handed Mannarino can be a tricky opponent, there’s no evidence to support a much different outcome on this day.

Daniil Medvedev (2) vs. Jan-Lennard Struff – Third on No.1 Court

Just two weeks ago in Halle, Struff upset Medvedev in the opening round.  But Struff would lose his next two matches in grass court warmup events, while the Russian rebounded quickly to win the title last week in Mallorca.  Medvedev has claimed their other three tour-level meetings.  The 31-year-old German has played some of his best tennis of late, debuting inside the top 30 last summer.  And he upset another Russian, Andrey Rublev, in the first round of the last Major.  However, in the best-of-five format, the cerebral No.2 seed should have enough time to figure out a way to advance beyond Struff

Ugo Humbert (21) vs. Nick Kyrgios – Third on Court 12

This is a rematch from February’s Australian Open, where Kyrgios outlasted Humbert in an epic battle 6-4 in the fifth.  The 26-year-old Australian went down in defeat to Dominic Thiem in the next round, and hasn’t played a match since.  Nick was scheduled to return to action two weeks ago at Queen’s Club, but withdrew due to a neck injury.  That same week, Humbert was winning the event in Halle, the biggest title of his career to date.  The 23-year-old Frenchman has now won three titles since the beginning of last year, and reached the fourth round of this event in 2019.  Humbert should be considered a significant favorite against Kyrgios, who is sorely lacking match play and likely still not 100% healthy.

Bianca Andreescu (5) vs. Alize Cornet – Fifth on No.2 Court

Just 13 days ago in Berlin, Cornet defeated the 2019 US Open champ after two tightly-contested sets.  The 21-year-old Canadian has only played four tour-level matches on grass in her career.  Cornet is the far more experienced player, especially on this surface, and achieved perhaps the biggest victory of her life at this event.  In 2014, she upset Serena Williams 6-4 in the third.  Alize’s victory over Bianca wasn’t her only impressive win in Berlin, where she also took out Garbine Muguruza in a third-set tiebreak.  It’s a mistake to count out Andreescu based on the fight she has exhibited in big tournaments, but Cornet is a gritty competitor who may even be a slight favorite against the No.5 seed.

Other Notable Matches on Tuesday:

Serena Williams (7) vs. Aliaksandra Sasnovich – Serena is 19-0 in the first round of Wimbledon.  Sasnovich is only 1-2 lifetime at this event.

Hubert Hurkacz (14) vs. Lorenzo Musetti – Since winning the Miami Open earlier this year, Hurkacz is now 0-6, which includes a loss to Musetti in Rome.  This will be the 19-year-old Italian’s first-ever ATP match on grass.

Angelique Kerber (25) vs. Nina Stojanovic – Last week in her home country, Kerber earned her first title since she won Wimbledon in 2018.  Stojanovic was a semifinalist earlier this month on the grass of Nottingham.

Sascha Zverev (4) vs. Tallon Griekspoor (Q) – This is the only Major where Zverev is yet to reach the quarterfinals or better.  24-year-old Griekspoor won two Challenger events this year on clay.

Coco Gauff (20) vs. Francesca Jones (WC) – It was two years ago at this tournament when Coco-mania was born, with her thrilling run to the round of 16 as a 15-year-old.  Jones is a 20-year-old Brit ranked outside the top 200.

Tuesday’s full Order of Play is here.


Roland Garros Daily Preview: Djokovic, Alcaraz, Wawrinka, Thiem Play on Monday



Court Suzanne-Lenglen has a new look in 2023, as it’s been fitted for a roof starting next year (twitter.com/rolandgarros)

Day 2 in Paris is the second of three days featuring first round singles action.


Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz will make their 2023 Roland Garros debuts on Monday, with both being heavy favorites in their opening rounds.  So this preview will dive deeper into the first round matches of two other Major singles champions: Stan Wawrinka and Dominic Thiem, both of whom are fighting to regain their form of yesteryear.

Two of the day’s other most appetizing matchups include two Italians with previous success at this tournament.  Fabio Fognini will look to upset a top 10 seed when he takes on a struggling Felix Auger-Aliassime, and Martina Trevisan plays a resurgent mother in Elina Svitolina.

Throughout the tournament, this preview will analyze the day’s four most prominent matches, while highlighting the other notable matches on the schedule.  Monday’s play begins at 11:00am local time.

Felix Auger-Aliassime (10) vs. Fabio Fognini – Second on Court Simonne-Mathieu

Auger-Aliassime is a meager 13-9 this season, and just 1-2 on clay.  Felix has not been fully healthy, as only a few days ago, he withdrew from Lyon due to a shoulder injury.  A year ago at this event, he pushed Rafael Nadal to five sets, while being coached by Uncle Toni.  But in this match, FAA is on upset alert, against a former Roland Garros quarterfinalist.

That result for Fognini occurred 12 years ago in Paris.  The biggest title of Fabio’s career also came on this surface, when he won Monte Carlo in 2019.  The 36-year-old Italian is only 4-9 on the year, though two of those victories took place recently on clay in Rome, when he defeated both Andy Murray and Miomir Kecmanovic.

Their only prior encounter also occurred and clay, which was four years ago in Rio.  Felix prevailed in straight sets on that day.  But on this day, the unpredictable Fabio may be a slight favorite to eliminate the tenth seed in the opening round.

Stan Wawrinka vs. Albert Ramos-Vinolas – Second on Court 14

Wawrinka’s French Open title run took place eight years ago.  Stan reached the quarterfinals or better at this tournament in five of the last 10 years.  But injuries have derailed the 38-year-old’s career in recent years, and he’s just 12-10 this season at tour level.

35-year-old Ramos-Vinolas was a quarterfinalist in Paris seven years ago.  His only Masters 1000 final also came on this surface, six years ago in Monte Carlo.  A year ago here, he gave Carlos Alcaraz a scare, going up two-sets-to-one before losing in five.  But in 2023, Albert is just 6-16 at tour level.

Wawrinka has dominated their history 7-0, but they haven’t played since they met in the quarters of this tournament in 2016.  Can Stan recapture some of the magic he’s displayed in the past at this event?  On Monday, he’s the favorite to advance against a tough clay court opponent.

Elina Svitolina vs. Martina Trevisan (26) – Third on Court Simonne-Mathieu

On Saturday, in just her third WTA tournament since becoming a mother for the first time, Svitolina became the champion in Strasbourg.  Elina is 22-9 at Roland Garros, having reached the quarterfinals three times. 

Trevisan equaled that result back in 2020, then she surpassed it a year ago, reaching the semifinals of this event.  Yet in 2023, Martina is only 11-13 overall, and 4-4 on clay.

In their first career meeting, Trevisan should be favored.  This will be a quick turnaround for Svitolina from Strasbourg, and she is not yet re-accustomed to playing so many matches within a short time span.

Dominic Thiem vs. Pedro Cachin – Third on Court 6

Between 2016 and 2020, Thiem reached two finals, two more semifinals, and another quarterfinal in Paris.  But since a serious wrist injury sidelined him in 2021, Dominic is 0-2 at this event.  The Austrian is 11-15 this season at all levels, and is coming off two Challenger events on clay earlier this month.

Cachin is a 28-year-old from Argentina who reached the final of a Challenger event on clay in April, before advancing to the round of 16 at the Madrid Masters thanks to impressive victories over Francisco Cerundolo and Frances Tiafoe.  Pedro advanced to the second round of this event in his French Open main draw debut a year ago.

They have never played at tour level, but they did meet at a Challenger tournament last year on clay, with Cachin prevailing in straight sets.  However, it’s worth noting that was Thiem’s first event in nearly a year after returning from injury.  On Monday, I expect the two-time finalist to rediscover enough of his form to prevail.

Other Notable Matches on Monday:

Karolina Pliskova (16) vs. Sloane Stephens – This is a matchup between two players who have each achieved two Major finals, with Stephens winning the 2017 US Open, yet neither arrives in Paris with much form.  Pliskova got off to a strong start on the year, but is just 2-2 on clay, and has been dealing with a knee injury.  Sloane is 9-11 at tour level, though she is coming off a semifinal run this past week in Rabat.  Stephens leads their head-to-head 4-1, which includes a straight-set win at this event in 2021.

Novak Djokovic (3) vs. Aleksandar Kovacevic – Djokovic is a two-time champion of this tournament, and is 85-16 here lifetime.  He’s reached at least the quarterfinals for 13 straight years, though he’s been battling an elbow injury, and is just 5-3 on clay this season.  Kovacevic is a 24-year-old American who has never been ranked inside the top 100.

Carlos Alcaraz (1) vs. Flavio Cobolli (Q) – Alcaraz is an excellent 30-3 this year, and won back-to-back titles on clay in his home country before suffering a shocking loss to qualifier Fabian Marozsan in Rome.  This will be Carlitos’ first match at a Major since winning last year’s US Open, as he missed the Australian due to injury.  Cobolli is a 21-year-old Italian qualifier making his main draw debut at a Slam.

Arthur Fils (WC) vs. Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (29) – Fils is an 18-year-old French standout who on Saturday won his first ATP title in his home country, defeating Francisco Cerundolo in the final of Lyon.  Davidovich Fokina is just 17-13 on the year, but was a quarterfinalist here two years ago. 

Monday’s full Order of Play is here.

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Jessica Pegula Looking To Overcome Physical And Mental Obstacles At Roland Garros

Jessica Pegula talked about a challenging last couple of weeks after winning her opening match at Roland Garros.



Jessica Pegula (@TheTennisLetter - Twitter)

Jessica Pegula is looking to overcome recent physical and mental obstacles at Roland Garros after advancing to the second round.


The American began her Roland Garros campaign in fairly comfortable fashion with a 6-4 6-2 victory over compatriot Danielle Collins.

Despite losing her serve on three occasions, Pegula overcame the former Australian Open finalist in straight sets to reach the second round where she will face Camila Giorgi.

Although the match may have been fairly straightforward, the last few weeks have been anything but easy.

As Pegula revealed in her post-match press conference the American has had to overcome mental and physical obstacles in the build-up to Roland Garros, “No, it’s definitely been tough. I think Rome was tough. Yeah, I had a little bit of a nagging injury in Madrid and Rome,” Pegula admitted.

“Then the two-week tournament. Then I got food poisoning last week. There’s been a lot of obstacles, I feel like, the last couple of weeks specifically that have been really tough physically and then taking their toll mentally because of that.

“So it hasn’t been easy, and I saw I have a really tough draw as well, now playing Giorgi, who did well here last year? Yeah. I don’t know. She does well here.

“It’s not easy, especially playing Danielle today I was just happy I was able to really, like, hunker down and focus. Because I don’t think I came in this week feeling my best or feeling the most prepared, but sometimes that happens.

“I’m glad I got through today. Like you said, it’s been a long few years of a lot of matches. I still feel good, but the last couple of weeks have been definitely interesting. The first time, too, playing Madrid and Rome two weeks and being American, we don’t really love being in Europe that much. So it’s definitely been different I think than last year.

“Yeah, I’m happy that I was able to kind of shift my perspective at least today and be able to play really great tennis. Hopefully now that I have two days off I can kind of take that into the next match.”

It’s clear that Pegula hasn’t had the ideal preparation heading into the second Grand Slam of the season as the American looks to establish herself as one of the main contenders.

Speaking of main contenders, Pegula was asked whether it bothers her that she’s not one of the main favourites to win the title in Paris alongside Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina.

The world number three said she’s unfazed and is just focusing on the task at hand, “They’ve earned that right,” Pegula claimed.

“They’ve been playing really solid tennis. Iga, we already know from last year. Aryna I felt like broke through in Australia as far as like winning a slam, but I think her results have always been up there. Then Elena at the end of last year as well.

“I mean, to see them being so consistent, I think they’ve earned that right. Obviously ranking-wise I’m still 3, but I’m sure that could change. I could go up or down, whatever. It depends on results.

“But, yeah, I think they’ve earned that title, and I think it’s nice to see three girls dominating. Hopefully I can be part of that conversation, but I think either way it’s still great for women’s tennis. Especially because everyone always talks about the inconsistency and all this stuff.

“I just tend to think it’s because we have a lot of really great depth. It’s nice to see them, yeah, playing really, really good tennis, and I feel like it’s good for the sport as well.”

Pegula will hope to put herself in the conversation with a win over Camila Giorgi, which the American leads their head-to-head 7-2.

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Maria Sakkari Knocked Out By Muchova In Round One At Roland Garros

Karolina Muchova knocked out Maria Sakkari to reach the second round at Roland Garros.



Maria Sakkari has suffered a first round exit at the hands of Karolina Muchova after losing 7-6(5) 7-5.


The Greek had high hopes for a deep run in Paris after an encouraging clay court season.

However Muchova’s variety and power was too strong as she came from a break down in both sets to seal the straight sets victory.

Next for Muchova will be Nadia Podoroska, who reached the semi-finals in Paris in 2020.

It was a promising start for Sakkari who had reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros before as the Greek took a 3-0 lead with some powerful shot-making.

However Muchova gradually built her confidence from the baseline and used her variety to grind the errors from an inconsistent Sakkari.

The eighth seed had lacked control on her shots and after a long game, Sakkari conceded the break back as the match was back on serve at 3-2.

Sakkari’s service games continued to be tested as she lacked confidence with her first serve as well as lacking effective point construction.

After saving two break points in the eighth game, Sakkari aimed to break down Muchova’s game with depth and angles.

However there was no consistent danger on big points which Muchova took advantage of in the eleventh game, comfortably breaking the world number eight’s serve.

This scrappy set of tennis would have another twist in the tale as Muchova lacked conviction on her own serve.

An aggressive return game from Sakkari saw her claw the break back as the opening set went to a tiebreak.

The tiebreak just like the rest of the set was full of momentum swings which saw Muchova manage to be the more consistent player.

A shanked forehand from Sakkari gave Muchova the advantage as she claimed the opening set in 67 minutes.

The second set was similar the first with Sakkari claiming the break in the opening game with authority before Muchova came back to level the set at 2-2.

As the set went on, the more tense both players became with opportunities being wasted.

However it was Sakkari who was the more error-prone and after three match points being wasted, Muchova struck the fatal blow on her fourth to claim victory.

For Sakkari, it’s her worst Grand Slam result since the Australian Open in 2021 as analysis will go on until Wimbledon.

As for Muchova, she celebrates another big win in 2023 with a match against Nadia Podoroska awaiting.

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