No Wimbledon champion in the last six years has managed to retain their crown. Sporting Previews takes a look at some of the key contenders and dark horse pretenders for the 2014 Wimbledon Mens title and looks out for any value trades with players that could progress into the latter stages of the competition.
RAFAEL NADAL 8/10
The world number 1 has been in imperious form on clay as he held aloft the Coupe des Mousquetaires for a ninth time after romping to victory over Novak Djokovic at Roland Garros. However the king of Clay has been struggling with the transition to the grass court season. He was knocked out in the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany, by Dustin Brown and his recent Wimbledon record is disappointing by his high standards. He was beaten by Lukas Rosol in 2012 in the second round and bowed out in the first round in 2013 to Steve Darcis so he has no recent form at the All England Club. In fact he hasn’t won on grass since 2012. Having said that, you can never write off a player who has been so successful and is after all a two time Wimbledon champion.
Grass Win %: 78.1
World Ranking: 1
Wiimbledon Rec 2013-2010: RD1, RD2, RUP, WON
ANDY MURRAY 7/10
He is the defending champion. The monkey is off his back as far as ending the long, long wait for a British Mens Singles Wimbledon champion. However he is still the lone carrier of the hopes of the nation so the pressure will rise once again. His form of late has been inconsistent. Although he did well to reach the semi final of the French Open he was demolished by Rafael Nadal. On grass, he was dumped out of Queens by Radek Stepanek. He has been slowly returning to top level after his long injury layoff but Wimbledon may just have come around to soon for him to be at his peak.
Grass Win %: 83.1
World Ranking: 5
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: WON, RUP, SF, SF
ROGER FEDERER 7/10
Won the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany on grass. Winning another Grand Slam title may be a step too far however a good run through to the quarter finals could be on the cards. Altough he may not be the force he once was his demise has not been like the Spanish football team. He has managed to keep a high level of performance in the Grand Slams and high variety game is always perfect for the grass courts.
Grass Win %: 87.4
World Ranking: 4
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: 2RD, WON, QF, QF
NOVAK DJOKOVIC 9/10
The Serbian has been strong on all surfaces and looks almost a certainty to feature prominently at the business end of the tournament. You have to go back to 2010 when Djokovic last failed to win at least one of the big four slams in a season. He is chasing his first of this season after losing in the final to Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros and Stan Wawrinka in the Australian Open quarter finals over five sets. Boris Becker certainly knows his way through a Wimbledon tournament and will be hoping that his knowledge and experience will benefit the man who appointed him head coach back in December.
Grass win %: 77.9
World Ranking: 2
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: RUP, SF, WON, SF
FELICIANO LOPEZ 6/10
His game is much better suited to grass than Clay and hard court. The left handed Soaniard made the Quarter Finals back in 2011 and has had good preparation for Wimbledon finishing runner up in the Aegon International at Queens Club and also performing strongly at Eastbourne on grass.
Grass win %: 64.6
World Ranking: 25
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: 3RD, 1RD, QF, 3RD
GRIGOR DIMITROV 6/10
Won his first ATP Tour Grass court title with a hard fought win over Feliciano Lopez at Queens Club in the Aegon Championship so should be nicely adapted to the grass surface. The youngster has been in good form all year winning four titles on hard, clay and grass. Will be looking to progress further this time aroundat Wimbledon and mmay be coming into his own.
Grass win %:
World Ranking: 13
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: 2RD, 2RD, 2RD, DNE
BERNARD TOMIC 6/10
Two bouts of hip surgery in February has made it difficult for the Aussie to reach full flight but his game is suited well to the grass and he has put in some good performances at Queens Club and Eastbourne. He reached the last 16 in 2013 and made the Quarter finals in 2011 but due to his eratic nature is a hit or miss selection.
Grass win %:
World Ranking: 82
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: 4RD, 1RD, QF,
RICHARD GASQUET 6/10
Gasquet put in a strong show in the Wimbledon warm up tournament down at Eastbourne. He has been a consistent performer over the years at the All England Club and his game is certainly well suited to grass. He made the semi finals back in 2007. He will certainly be disappointed if he doesn’t make it passed the 3rd round at least.
Grass win %: 68.3
World Ranking: 14
Wimbledon Rec 2013-2010: 3RD, 4RD, 4RD, DNE