The 0-6 of the third set with which Roger Federer said goodbye to Wimbledon He focused his eyes on the day of the men’s quarters. Another placid day of Novak Djokovic placing himself two steps away from equaling the record of 20 Grand Slam titles that the Swiss shares with Rafa Nadal.
‘Nole’ is in a prime position to seal a sixth crown on the grass of the All England Club and to keep alive the feat of completing a gold Grand Slam by later adding the Olympic title in Tokyo and a fourth victory at the US Open, from which he was disqualified in the last edition without an audience. It has not triumphed since 2018.
Thinking of New York Nadal has already moved token. On Thursday it was officially announced that it will premiere at the Washington ATP
, in the American capital, in a category 500 tournament that takes place from August 2 to 8, just the week after the conclusion of the Olympic tennis tournament, although still in full Games, which he resigned, such as Wimbledon, after yielding in the ‘semis’ of Roland Garros.
The 35-year-old from Balearic Islands advanced the beginning of the hard-court tour, which he did not play in 2020. In atypical circumstances, due to the continuous health bubbles, Nadal drastically changes his program by adding an event that will also determine his presence in the ATP Masters 1000 de rigueur: Canada (August 9-15), in Toronto, and Cincinnati (August 15-22). Three weeks in a row with the Spaniard on the court, it is not even on clay, less with the Open waiting from August 30 to September 12. He has not been to North America since his fourth US Open in 2019.
Exhausted from the journey in clay (Montecarlo, Godó, Madrid, Rome and Paris)With no time or courage to transition to the pitch in two weeks, Nadal and his coaching staff looked to New York as a more realistic and reasonable target.
Djokovic, 34, is fueled by successes and the historic challenge that he has highlighted on his wish list. Beating Nadal at Roland Garros was an adrenaline rush that allowed him to go to the grass of the Mallorca ATP, playing doubles matches, to rehearse his arrival at Wimbledon.
He is in shape, which he will try to enhance on Friday in the semifinals against the Canadian left-hander Denis Shapovalov, 22 years old and 12th ATP. The Serb has six victories over ‘Shapo’, his obstacle to reaching his seventh final in London, his 30th in the Grand Slam.
It will be in the second shift of the central, which will open at 2.30 pm the Italian Matteo berrettini, on a roll as Queen’s grass champion, 25 years old and 9th ATP, and Federer’s executioner, the Pole Hubert hurkacz, 24 years old and 18th ATP, winner of the Miami tournament but who arrived in the English capital with a negative series of six defeats.
Berrettini, semi-finalist of the US Open 2019, wants to be the first Italian tennis player in a Wimbledon final and take the baton, in the men’s field, of the Grand Slam of Adriano Panatta, champion at Roland Garros 1976. Fifty years later, Matteo appears on the scene.
Hurkacz equaled the result of Jerzy janowicz at Wimbledon 2013. Poland has had more joys so far with women: Iga Swiatek made history at Roland Garros 2019 triumphing and on London grass Agnieszka Radwanska lost the 2012 final.