April 8, 2019
There are few certainties in tennis. But ten probabilities have occurred to us as we look forward to the rest of 2019.
See if you agree. Is there one certainty among them?
1/ Roger Federer will be there or thereabouts when the top players fight for the titles.
Roger leads the race to London for a reason. He won Dubai, reached the final at Indian Wells and won Miami. Federer is on a roll. Where he doesn’t win, he will come close. He seems to be getting even more agile. The man is extraordinary.
2/ Novak Djokovic will come good when it really matters.
We don’t foresee another epic slump for Novak just because he has mentioned off-court distractions in the light of failures at Indian Wells and Miami. He currently holds three of the four Slams for a reason. Novak was made for the big occasion.
3/ Nick Kyrgios will continue to create entertaining mayhem.
Whether he is arguing with the umpire, confronting a member of the crowd, or even complaining about his opponent, Nick is serious box office and shows no immediate sign of falling silent. As long as he gives his all and enjoys the controversy, so do we!
4/ Rafael Nadal will be feeling some kind of old wound as he goes to sporting war once more.
Rafa’s uncle and former coach Toni said recently that Nadal is ‘not a tennis player but an injured person who plays tennis.’ So the pain will probably be there in his knees, elbow, back, somewhere. That doesn’t mean he won’t take the clay court season by storm. He usually does!
5/ Serena Williams may also be nursing some kind of injury as she aims to make more history.
Like the other superstars, Serena isn’t getting younger, and at times she may have to play through the pain barrier as she seeks to outshine the historic 24 Grand Slams of Margaret Court. We hope it isn’t so. We fear it may be.
6/ The next generation of male tennis stars will amaze us – without winning 2019 Slams.
Hope we’re wrong about the young guns not getting their hands on biggest silverware, and it is only a matter of time, of course. The likes of Stefanos Tsitsipas, Felix Auger Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov and many more are already providing us with some thrilling box office entertainment. But the old masters know too much when it comes to the crunch…don’t they?
7/ Alexander Zverev and Dominic Thiem will have us tearing our hair out.
Don’t get us wrong, we love these guys and they are winners in their own right. Zverev even won the year-end finals in London. Thiem recently took Indian Wells. They regularly perform to a superb level of top-five consistency. Respect to both. But will they fall frustratingly short in the Slams again? Hope not, but…
8/ Canadian tennis players will continue to take the world by storm.
Canada is fast becoming one of the superpowers of world tennis. Teenager Bianca Andreescu won Indian Wells. Only the other week in Miami, youngsters Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger Aliassime reached the semi-finals in Miami. Eugenie Bouchard was a Wimbledon finalist and 2014 and Milos Raonic reached the showpiece in 2016. Go Canada!
9/ There will be a new women’s world number one every other month.
Naomi Osaka may hold the last two Slams but she probably isn’t ready to dominate the rankings just yet, as her form at Indian Wells and Miami showed. Simona Halep is a worthy rival for top spot. But with different women winning every tournament this year, it’s anyone’s guess as the year unfolds.
10/ Wimbledon 2019 will provide us with more stunning drama and wonderful memories.
Well, this “probability” is actually a certainty, right? Who can forget last year’s stunning semi-final between Djokovic and Nadal, or British star Jo Konta’s incredible run the previous year? So many highlights, you will have your own favourites. Wimbledon always delivers. Every year. The rest of our top ten are only probables. But this one you can always count on! We can’t wait for Wimbledon 2019! How about you?
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