The first week of Wimbledon comes to an end on Saturday as the third round of the two singles draws is played out alongside another bunch of doubles matches as the lawns of SW19 get used once again.
We have seen some great tennis so far in this tournament and already had a whole bunch of stories written and we shouldn’t really be expecting anything different on the middle Saturday of what is shaping up to be a great competition.
Day 5 Recap
We saw some great tennis on the main courts on Friday and there was a big shock on Centre Court when Kevin Anderson bit the dust. There was an easy win for Simona Halep while the likes of Karolina Pliskova and Novak Djokovic were made to work harder than they would have liked to make it through to the second week. Milos Raonic was another easy winner on a day where we lost the likes of Caroline Wozniacki and Felix Auger-Aliassime. Once again it was Coco Gauff who stole the show however.
It was another tough day for us betting wise with David Goffin salvaging something for us on Friday. Kevin Anderson didn’t just lose but he lost in straight sets which would have been a crazy price if you’d backed that while Coco Gauff won but not in time to cover the handicap. To add to the misery Dani Collins went down in a deciding set in a tight match so we’ve work to do on Saturday and beyond.
It is the French Open champion and women’s number one Ash Barty who opens up Centre Court on Saturday when she takes on the improving British player Harriet Dart in what will be a huge occasion for the Brit. It is absolute class all the day on Centre on Saturday with Rafael Nadal up second. After a tough battle in the last round he faces the competent Jo-Wilfried Tsonga before the man who has made this court his own is back on the main court as Roger Federer takes on the flashy Frenchman Lucas Pouille, whose all court game should make this an entertaining battle.
It is a day for the Brits over on Court 1 on Saturday afternoon but not before the legend that is Serena Williams is back on one of the show courts. Serena takes on the stiff challenge of Julia Goerges for a place in the last 16 before British number one Jo Konta steps out to take on a Sloane Stephens who she faces for the second Grand Slam in a row. The final singles match on this court sees Dan Evans looking to make it into the second week when he faces the conqueror of Marin Cilic in Joao Sousa. Serena Williams could well be back on this court for a mixed doubles clash with Andy Murray when the singles action has finished.
It is the former champion Petra Kvitova opening up the show out on the graveyard court when she takes on the competent Magda Linette. That is the only singles match on show on this court on Saturday which is a surprise, although anyone with tickets for this court will be pleased to know that Andy Murray is in men’s doubles action in the second match of the day. A mixed doubles clash involving Coco Gauff finishes off play here.
There are only a couple of singles matches on the schedule over on Court 3 on Saturday as well with the first of those seeing Kei Nishikori taking on the dangerous American player Steve Johnson who is good on this surface. The other match comes from the women’s draw where the underrated number four seed Kiki Bertens is back in action. She meets Barbora Strycova in a match that could get a little tight if the Dutch woman allows it to. The doubles match scheduled for this court afterwards sees the Bryan brothers on show.
Best of the Rest
The lack of singles action on Courts 2 and 3 means there is a fair number of games being played around the grounds with the likes of Belinda Bencic, Jan-Lennard Struff, Elise Mertens, Matteo Berrettini, Fabio Fognini and Sam Querrey all looking to book their spots in the second week of the tournament with a win on Saturday.
Just the one in the men’s draw for me on Saturday where I expect Dan Evans to come through against Joao Sousa but we’ve seen enough from the Portuguese player to suggest he is hitting the ball well so I don’t expect it to be plain sailing for the Briton. Evans has come through the draw nicely thus far but he hasn’t really played much just yet with Basilashvili not comfortable on this surface. Sousa is though and his win over Cilic in the last round should have given him plenty of confidence. Whoever wins this I expect it to go four sets and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it needing a fifth to settle it. However many sets are needed I like over 37.5 games in this one.
I’m with a Brit in the women’s draw on Saturday as well where I expect Jo Konta to come past Sloane Stephens quite nicely. Given what she has achieved in the game, Stephens has only ever been past this round once at Wimbledon so grass clearly isn’t her best surface and Konta can exploit that. The Brit hadn’t been in amazing form on the grass but she produced her best performance on the surface this season in seeing off Katerina Siniakova in the last round and with a 3-0 head-to-head lead against her American foe she should be full of confidence here. One of those wins was at the French Open last month where Konta won 61 64. I’m expecting another comfortable victory for her here.
Due to a few technical issues overnight we are late with this preview and given that most of the matches get started when play begins there isn’t a lot of games left to make an accumulator up from so we’ll leave it for Saturday and come back with one for the last 16 matches on Monday.
WON – Back J.Sousa vs D.Evans – Over 37.5 games for a 4/10 stake at 1.80 with Betway
WON – Back J.Konta (-3.5 games) to beat S.Stephens for a 4/10 stake at 2.00 with Boylesports
Back her here: