Monday, 4 July 2016

No rest on Sunday at Wimbledon

Organisers of Wimbledon 2016 were happy to use the middle Sunday to catch up with the Schedule which had skipped ahead significantly, leaving several players behind due to their inability to hit the court.

Local churches are not happy - instead of collection plates being filled, SW19 ticketing receipts became beneficiaries of parishioners hard earned cash.  Expect all denominations to be better prepared in future with plates at the entrance should the rest day be not so restful.

All fourth round singles matches are now set following Middle Sunday (which is not being called Day 7 for reasons unclear to me - we will call it Day no longer 6 but not yet 7 or Day at sixes and sevens) - Serena Williams will be there after her straightforward straight sets win over Annika Beck, and her opponent will be Svetlana Kuznetsova, who required the full distance to eliminate American Sloane Stephens, 8-6 in the third.  Ridding Wimbledon of the next US challenge will be somewhat more difficult for Sveta.

Coco Vandeweghe put the Star Spangled Banner back on top with a convincing win over sixth seed Roberta Vinci and now has her eyes firmly set on a quarter final, assuming of course that she passes the stern Russian test presented by Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.  The 21st seed knocked over the final female Swiss resistance Timea Bacsinszky for the cost of a mere five games.

Elena Vesnina ensured a decent Russian presence in the round of sixteen after saying farewell to American qualifier Julia Boserup.  Indeed one quarter finalist will definitely be Russian as Vesnina plays Fed Cup team mate and doubles partner Ekaterina Makarova in the fourth round.  Makarova followed up her dismissal of Petra Kvitova by bouncing another Czech, Barbora Strycova, in straight sets.

The #NewGen lost another of its hopes with 'old hand' Tomas Berdych holding too many cards and firing too many weapons for Alexander Zverev, who won't be as overwhelmed in the future but for now needs to learn from a loss.
Berdych will play Jiri Vesely in the round of sixteen, Vesely having been victorious over Joao Sousa in the third round.

French pair Lucas Pouille and Richard Gasquet each won the final sets of their incomplete matches against Del Potro and Ramos-Vinolas, earning the rights to battle Bernard Tomic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga respectively.  Tsonga, the fourth French player in the final sixteen, came from two sets to one down against John Isner to finally win an epic 4 1/2 hour five setter 19-17 in the fifth.

#NewGen still has Nick Kyrgios flying its flag thanks to his four set success over Feliciano Lopez.  How much longer Nick lasts is a question Andy Murray will play a large part answering.  Murray already had reached the round of sixteen and now is favourite to win the title, so Kyrgios faces a monumental task.

Just a final note on Novak Djokovic and his treatment by the tournament organisers.  And indeed the treatment of Centre Court ticket holders.
The world number one player was assigned his third round match to Court One on Friday, while Roger Federer had Centre Court.

While there shouldn't be favouritism, although Roger has been the subject of it throughout his career, Novak had earned the right to Centre Court status due to his amazing tennis achievements of the past two years.
As twice defending Wimbledon champion and holder of all four Grand Slam titles, there was no reason for him to be placed anywhere but on Centre Court.  And just imagine how much better a stage for Sam Querrey to achieve his greatest victory.
Centre Court ticket holders deserved to see the world's best player, win or lose, and they were deprived.  
Novak deserved better.

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