With the dust having now settled after the French Open, with Rafa Nadal claiming his 10th title at Roland Garros, as well as youngster Jeļena Ostapenko causing a major shock in the women’s draw, the countdown to Wimbledon has well and truly begun. Home favourite Andy Murray will be looking to defend his title from twelve months ago, despite having struggled throughout 2017, while Serena Williams will miss out due to her pregnancy. Both the men’s and women’s draw look the widest open as they have in many years, with no clear favourites.
With Nadal having cruised to yet another title in Paris, his 15th Grand Slam success, the Spaniard will be looking to claim a first title in South-West London since 2010, a tournament in which he has struggled at over recent years. The 31-year-old pulled out of the AEGON Championships at Queens Club in order to give himself some recuperation time, and will hope to make a quick transition to the grass surface. Elsewhere, the likes of Andy Murray, Roger Federer, Milos Raonic and Stan Wawrinka all suffered shock first round exits at the start of the grass court season, with all players seemingly struggling to get to grips with the speed of the play. Wimbledon is a tournament that always springs surprises, with seasoned specialists such as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Tomas Berdych and Marin Cilic among the potential outsiders for the championship.
In the absence of Serena Williams, many of the world’s best women will fancy their chances of claiming glory on the biggest stage of all. World number one, Angelique Herber, reached the final in 2016, and will be looking to go one better this time around. However, the German will be challenged by a whole host of big names, with many backing the likes of Simona Halep, Karolina Pliskova and Svetlana Kuznetsova. Meanwhile, home favourite Johanna Konta will hope to make her first Grand Slam final, having reached the last four in Melbourne earlier this year.
With little separating the top players in the men’s draw, any one of a number of players will fancy their chances at Wimbledon. Despite his struggles of late, Murray will go into the tournament as one of the favourites, with the backing of the home crowd often inspiring the Brit to play his best tennis. Ladbrokes offer the world number one as the 3/1 second favourite for the tournament. Meanwhile, Federer will be hoping that skipping the French Open pays off, with the Swiss legend hunting an eighth title on centre court. The veteran is backed at 5/2 at Betway. Novak Djokovic is also a man who can never be ruled out, with the Serbian superstar now backed by former champion, Andre Agassi.
Pliskova is the favourite for the title in the women’s draw, however with the Czech player having failed to register her first Grand Slam win as of yet, it may well be more sensible to Herber, despite a recent injury scare for the German. The duo are offered odds of 9/2 and 14/1 respectively. Meanwhile, a good outside bet could be Petra Kvitova, who returns to the game following an attack by an intruder at her home.