The Wimbledon fortnight is just about upon us. Players are probably feeling nerves as I write this the night before the main draw begins. The first round is often the most nerve-wracking round, especially for the top players as they try to get in to the rhythm of the Championships. Already John Isner and Venus Williams crashed out. Who is next?
Who is going to come out with the coveted Wimbledon title?
Tennis.com Profiles of Top 12 Contenders for Title
In my opinion Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic are the obvious favorites on the men's side. They have the confidence to go all the way. Fed especially is driven to win another Wimbledon and set himself up for a run on the same grounds for the Olympics. To say that these guys, specifically Federer, will be feeling the uber-importance of the next month is an understatement. History will be made and one of these guys could stand above the others in history if they were to win Wimbledon and then Gold at the Olympics. Who has the most pressure on him? Andy Murray of course. This could be a defining moment for Murray or more disappointment. I will be watching closely to see how he handles this huge opportunity.
On the women's side the field is open. My favorites are everybody's favorites - Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams. Sharapova has the look of confidence again, and Serena can beat anyone when she brings her full game. Grass accentuates Williams' big serve and groundstrokes. Petra Kvitova will try to defend her title. Watching her in the first round she looked nervous. Hopefully she can get comfortable and give herself a great shot at repeating. Beyond those three players you have to consider Victoria Azarenka and Sam Stosur has the other players that have a great opportunity to win Wimbledon. Big games in different ways, but both can control a match with their power.
Wimbledon has a mystique and a pristine atmosphere about it. The players feel the importance of this tournament, probably more so than any other Slam. To win Wimbledon is to be etched in to history forever. However, the pursuit of the Wimbledon trophy is as anxiety-provoking as any situation you will find in tennis. From the grass and how the wear and weather affect the bounce of the ball to the difficulty of breaking serve, players are feeling the pressure. It will be exciting to watch how they handle such an awesome opportunity and the mental dynamics that they are confronted with as they pursue the Championship.