Nick Kyrgios vs Novak Djokovic | Wimbledon 2022 Final preview - UBITENNIS
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Nick Kyrgios vs Novak Djokovic | Wimbledon 2022 Final preview

A match too crazy too call!

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image via twitter.com/wimbledon

After 10 years Kyrgios is again in a Wimbledon final: in 2012 the Australian played and won the junior doubles final, enjoying the victory of his idol Federer the very same year on Center Court; today he will instead take the field to play the final against Djokovic. The Serbian, although showing only flashes of his best tennis, arrived as expected at the final stop. Perhaps the world of esports will have to wait a little longer (Kyrgios had been chosen by Sony as a testimonial for the launch of playstation 5 in Australia and had declared “I think that, once I reach 10 years of career, I will devote myself to video games.”)

 

But in the real world, has he got more chances to clinch the title than in the virtual world?

According to the betting sites, the favorite is obviously Djokovic, while the odds for Kyrgios are higher than 4:1, a considerable gap for a Grand Slam final. However, according to the Wimbledon power index (a service developed by IBM, as a technological partner), a slight advantage is given to Kyrgios

Ubitennis will leave it to you to decide, from our part we will provide some historical data and a few interpretations.

Head to Head and Big match attitude: these are some of Djokovic’s thoughts after his win against Norrie;

He’s a big-match player (refer to Kyrgios). If you see his career, the best tennis he’s played is always against the top guys,” Djokovic said. “That’s why we all respect him because we know what he can come up with. It’s going to be [an] interesting match.” 

Kyrgios in a single match can beat anyone, that’s arguably something over everybody agrees. Our gut tells us that Djokovic’s statement is correct since we all know how Kyrgios has been able to beat anyone in the past; also he is one of the few who can show a positive record against Djokovic. But it is worth remembering that both matches date back to the first half of 2017, perhaps the worst period of Djokovic’s career, conditioned by a wrist injury and by a poor focus, that led him to the abandonment of his historic coach Marian Vajda. Since then there have been no more direct clashes, and therefore it will be interesting to see also from a tactical point of view how the match will develop. Finally, a bit of fact-checking: on grass Kyrgios’ record against the top 20 is 6 won and 10 lost.

5th set attitude: Given the ups and downs shown by Djokovic against Sinner and Norrie and the ability of Kyrgios to come up with great tennis peaks, the hypothesis that the match can go to the distance is not so strange. Of course, Djokovic knows how to play the games in the 5th set, the tennis land of fatigue and tension: the Serbian boasts a record of 37 wins and 10 losses in the fifth set, and in particular here at Wimbledon posts an unreal 10-1; the only defeat dates back to 2006 when a still teenager Nole lost to Mario Ancic. In short, if the match were to go to the fifth, we would not bet against the Serbian.

On the other hand, Kyrgios’ career in 5 set matches is much shorter. In the 13 matches that has gone to the distance, he won on 9 occasions; to be fair against not-so-great opponents; Nick managed to get out of the hole of the two sets of disadvantage only 1 time, a feat that Nole has managed 7 times.

Grass court attitude: If we look at Djokovic’s percentages on grass we realize how ridiculously good he is. If we look at the restricted club of players who have won more than 100 matches on grass in the open era, Nole is here:

Grass: Matches Won
1. Roger Federer = 86.9% (192-29)
2. Pete Sampras = 85.71% (90/105)
3. Novak Djokovic = 85.0% (102-18)

Federer and Sampras have built their grass-court status from the serving side, while Djokovic leads the duo when returning, adding a solid performance on serve

Grass: Service Points Won
No 5: Pete Sampras = 72.93%
No. 8: Roger Federer = 72.35%
No. 23: Novak Djokovic = 70.02%

Grass: Return Points Won
No. 19: Novak Djokovic = 39.60%
No. 47: Roger Federer = 38.24%
No. 81: Pete Sampras = 37.14%

Talking about Kyrgios, it is arguably better to concentrate on this tournament, conisdering that he never won a tournament on grass in his career

Tactical key of the match: the Aussie’s serve: in some ways the player’s profile is not so dissimilar to Berrettini’s, and we know how Nole has a superhuman ability to demise big servers. Assuming that Kyrgios will replicate the first serve performance shown in this tournament we could expect 68% of first serve in, with a rate of success of 79%; small problem: Djokovic return. During his career the Serbian was able to display this kind of numebers:

1st serve return point won2nd serve return point won
31.10%53.30%

If we had to choose a proxy match for tomorrow’s final, maybe we could choose Medvedev – Kyrgios at the 2022 Australian Open; in that match, these were some words from Kyrgios:

“I was landing consistent 220-230kph serves close to the lines, what more can I do??’ “The way I played today I would win against 95% of the tour.”

The feeling is therefore that within each set we should pay attention to the success rate of Kyrgios’ first serve; if the guy from Canberra manages to hold on and maintain the numbers shown during the tournament it is likely that we will have a final worthy of Wimbledon center court; otherwise, if the percentages were to diverge significantly downwards, it is evident that we would see a slaughter. Finally, a side effect of the effectiveness of the first serve is to allow the Australian a plan B against Nole returns on his second serve. If Kyrgios manages to have a high combined ratio of the first serves in and won, the Australian could be tempted to go for it also on second serves. Just make a simple calculation: if the percentage of success on the second serve is lower than 68% * 79% then it is better to try hard and cross your fingers. In our case the threshold would be around 53%, curiously exactly the same number Nick held over the course of the tournament in terms of second serves won. And honestly, if Kyrgios succeeds without going all-in on the second serve, managing to win more than half of the points it would seem like a miracle (also given the statistics of the Serbian).

In the end just a small recap of the past Wimbledon finals, it’s a long time since such a low ranked player reaches the final

nameseasonmean agewinner ageWINNERrankLOOSER_ALIASloser_rankscoreMEAN_of_FINALIST_RANK
Wimbledon202129.734.11N. DJOKOVIC1M. BERRETTINI96-7 (5) 6-4 6-4 6-35
Wimbledon201935.0032.11N. DJOKOVIC1R. FEDERER37-6(5) 1-6 7-6(4) 4-6 13-12(3) RE2
Wimbledon201831.6231.11N. DJOKOVIC21K. ANDERSON86-2 6-2 7-6(3)14.5
Wimbledon201732.3335.90R. FEDERER5M. CILIC66-3 6-1 6-45.5
Wimbledon201627.3129.12A. MURRAY2M. RAONIC76-4 7-6(3) 7-6(2)4.5
Wimbledon201531.0028.10N. DJOKOVIC1R. FEDERER27-6(1) 6-7(10) 6-4 6-31.5
Wimbledon201429.9827.09N. DJOKOVIC2R. FEDERER46-7(7) 6-4 7-6(4) 5-7 6-43
Wimbledon201326.1026.11A. MURRAY2N. DJOKOVIC16-4 7-5 6-41.5
Wimbledon201228.0030.88R. FEDERER3A. MURRAY44-6 7-5 6-3 6-43.5
Wimbledon201124.5624.08N. DJOKOVIC2R. NADAL16-4 6-1 1-6 6-31.5
Wimbledon201024.4024.05R. NADAL1T. BERDYCH136-3 7-5 6-47
Wimbledon200927.3427.87R. FEDERER2A. RODDICK65-7 7-6(6) 7-6(5) 3-6 16-144
Wimbledon200824.4722.06R. NADAL2R. FEDERER16-4 6-4 6-7(5) 6-7(8) 9-71.5
Wimbledon200723.4725.88R. FEDERER1R. NADAL27-6(7) 4-6 7-6(3) 2-6 6-21.5
Wimbledon200622.4724.88R. FEDERER1R. NADAL26-0 7-6(5) 6-7(2) 6-31.5
Wimbledon200523.3423.87R. FEDERER1A. RODDICK46-2 7-6(2) 6-42.5
Wimbledon200422.3422.87R. FEDERER1A. RODDICK24-6 7-5 7-6(3) 6-41.5
Wimbledon200324.2521.87R. FEDERER5M. PHILIPPOUSSIS487-6(5) 6-2 7-6(3)26.5
Wimbledon200220.9021.33L. HEWITT1D. NALBANDIAN326-1 6-3 6-216.5
Wimbledon200129.1429.78G. IVANISEVIC125P. RAFTER106-3 3-6 6-3 2-6 9-767.5
Wimbledon200028.1828.87P. SAMPRAS3P. RAFTER216-7(10) 7-6(5) 6-4 6-212
Wimbledon199928.5027.86P. SAMPRAS1A. AGASSI46-3 6-4 7-52.5
Wimbledon199826.8226.86P. SAMPRAS1G. IVANISEVIC256-7(2) 7-6(9) 6-4 3-6 6-213
Wimbledon199726.9425.86P. SAMPRAS1C. PIOLINE446-4 6-2 6-422.5
Wimbledon199625.7824.55R. KRAJICEK13M. WASHINGTON206-3 6-4 6-316.5
Wimbledon199525.7323.87P. SAMPRAS2B. BECKER46-7(5) 6-2 6-4 6-23
Wimbledon199422.8122.86P. SAMPRAS1G. IVANISEVIC57-6(2) 7-6(5) 6-03
Wimbledon199322.3521.86P. SAMPRAS1J. COURIER27-6(3) 7-6(6) 3-6 6-31.5
Wimbledon199221.4622.15A. AGASSI14G. IVANISEVIC86-7(8) 6-4 6-4 1-6 6-411
Wimbledon199123.1322.68M. STICH7B. BECKER26-4 7-6(4) 6-44.5

Grand Slam

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

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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.

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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

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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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