Wimbledon 2016: Dividing the Sweet 16 into Groups

Men’s Sweet 16: Rare Waters of a Wide Open Major

KEY – Chances for winning the title are not predicated on which group one is in with two exceptions.  The puncher’s chance grouping does seem to have a chance to win 4 more matches, but those chances seem low.  The final grouping just doesn’t quite seem to have enough to win 4 more matches.

Sights on the Title

  • Andy Murray – The world #2 won Wimbledon in 2013 and the gold medal at this venue in 2012.  Murray has reached 4 consecutive tournament title matchess in 2016 winning Rome and Queen’s Club.  Andy has also reached the final round at the 2016 Australian and French Opens.
  • Roger Federer –  Roger’s form is not what it has been since 2003, but he is also only 12 sets from the title and none of those sets have to come against Novak Djokovic.
  • Marin Cilic – The 2014 US Open champion played well at Queen’s Club and is 12 sets away from an improbable 2nd major title.
  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga – Jo-Wilfried reached a major final in 2008.  He has been in multiple major semifinal matches including two semifinal runs at Wimbledon.  He owns a Wimbledon victory over Roger Federer.
  • Kei Nishikori – The 2014 US Open runner-up has played with fits and starts at times. His showings in Miami and Rome were strong.  This doesn’t seem like the right surface for Kei to win his 1st major, but he is in the mix for the title.

Looking to Break Through

  • Milos Raonic – Milos reached the 2014 semifinal round at Wimbledon.  He played well at Queen’s Club.  He has an elephant gun for a serve.  Milos may have less flash than some looking to breakthrough, but he also seems to have a long-term plan for advancing on tour.
  • David Goffin – Like Nishikori, Goffin seems to have a chance at breaking through on what may seem to be the wrong surface.  His ability to take the ball early works well on grass.  Plus grass makes it easier for him to hold serve.
  • Nick Kyrgios – Kyrgios owns Wimbledon wins over Rafael Nadal and Milos Raonic.  He has a win over Roger Federer.  He has radioactive power on his shots and swag.  Is that enough?
  • Bernard Tomic – On talent, Tomic has a chance to win 4 more matches.  I don’t know if he has enough mental fortitude to really be in this grouping.

One Last Big Chance?

  • Tomas Berdych – He was runner-up at Wimbledon in 2010.  Can he go one step further?  If he is to do so, it would be one of the great turn-arounds in tennis history as he was wiped out in Rome.
  • Richard Gasquet – His semifinal run at Wimbledon 2015 marked a return to the final four after making his first appearance in the final weekend in 2007.  He has nice grass court instincts, but will he have enough firepower against either Murray or Federer if it comes to it?

A Puncher’s Chance

  • Jiri Vesely – He is 6’6″ with a big lefty serve.  He could ride that far enough that the finish line would be in sight.
  • Sam Querrey – He is 6’6″ with a big serve but is right-handed.  Sam has a Queen’s Club title to his name.  If things broke right, he too could be close enough to see the finish line.

Little Chance at the Title

  • Nicolas Mahut – Nicolas Mahut won a grass court event in 2016.  In fact, Mahut owns 4 career singles titles on on grass and has been having great success in doubles as well.  I think Mahut is favored in his round of 16 match, but at some point his game will be too limited to keep winning.
  • Steve Johnson – Steve Johnson also won a grass court tune-up event.  He has savvy and could win 2 or 3 more marches at Wimbledon (3 matches would put him in the final).  I just cannot see him winning 4 more matches.
  • Lucas Pouille – Variety and touch are often rewarded on grass.  Can he win 4 more matches?  I am not convinced (yet?).
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4 Comments

  1. i wonder if berdych has more of a shot? he’s been in a wimbledon final before and will be more well-rested than tsonga – or nick kyrgios i think. but it’s very hard to say with him. i’ve just always thought tomas is misunderstood and also supremely talented. by and large your breakdown makes perfect sense.

    1. I think Berdych could have been in the grouping with Cilic and Tsonga. I think Berdych will have more final 8 and final 4 appearances at slams, but to have Novak and Rafa out may make this his best remaining chance as opposed to his last remaining chance. Good call on him having more chances!

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