Johanna Konta vs Katerina Siniakova
Jo’s preparation for Wimbledon couldn’t have gone better winning the title in Nottingham which I was so pleased to see.
Being the top seed is never a given, you have to work for it and she did with two wins going to three close sets.
The Brit is seeded at No.27 for the tournament was semi-finalist back in 2017 and will open up against Katarina Siniakova who had a very good week in Bad Homburg.
Jo’s ranking has taking a hit over the last couple of years and I would love to see her find that form from a couple of years ago and go deep in the competition!
Sam Murray Sharan vs Sorana Cirstea
Sam Murray Sharan is back at Wimbledon for the first time since 2014. The 33 year old hasn’t won a match at Wimbledon yet and hasn’t won on the tour since an ITF event in Portugal back in October last year.
I would try to make a case for Sam but it is tough, she lost a close match to Kostyuk in qualifying last week but I do think Sorana who has bene playing well and picked up her first singles title in 13 years.
Emma Raducanu vs Vitalia Diatchenko
The 30 year old from Russia has come through qualifying to be in Wimbledon as she did in Birmingham a week ago but lost in the first round.
Vitalia made the third round back in 2018 where as for Emma it will be her debut at SW19 with her wildcard being upgraded from qualifying to main draw following a good run last week including a win against Timea Babos.
You can read more on Emma below:
Fran Jones vs Coco Gauff
It will be a lovely moment for Fran Jones making her Wimbledon debut. It has been a long journey to this moment for Fran who has Ectrodactyly ectodermal dysplasia syndrome which is a rare genetic condition which often affects the fingers and toes. Fran as born with three fingers and a thumb on each hand and three toes on her right foot and four on her left.
Fran was written off and proved the doubters wrong making her first main draw in Melbourne this year and now set for the biggest stage in London.
Someone who adapted well to the biggest stage was Coco Gauff on her debut in 2019. The American saw off Venus Williams and performed heroics against Polona Hercog from match points down.
Heather Watson vs Kristie Ahn
Heather had a good week in Birmingham making the final four following two matches on Saturday following Thursday’s rain but lost to eventual winner Ons Jabeur.
In Eastbourne it was a tough defeat to Iga Swiatek with the Brit losing 3-6 7-6 5-7 against the 2020 French Open champion.
Kristie who was one of the lockdown champions of TikTok is in as a lucky loser following her loss to Niculescu and some withdrawals is in the main draw. I do think this is a good chance for Watson I have been impressed with the last few weeks and should take plenty of positives from her performance against Iga.
Harriet Dart vs Elise Mertens
Across three events in Nottingham, Birmingham and Eastbourne I was impressed with Harriet. She lost close matches with Lauren Davis, Carolina Garcia and Elena Rybakina will all three going the distance but was pipped to the finish line.
Elise is a tough opening opponent but form has been a bit over the place. She performed well against Halep in Madrid and since then hasn’t stood out. On grass she is is win-less and lost by some unusual shorelines:
Birmingham – 6-7 7-6 6-7 vs Tomljanovic
Eastbourne – 6-0 6-7 5-7 vs Gauff
Jodie Burrage vs Lauren Davis
Another Wimbledon debut in Jodie Burrage, the 22 year old who has had three ankle surgeries but has a deserved wildcard has a difficult opponent in round one.
Lauren can hit with great power and pace, she does hit through the ball well on the grass and it will be a big step up for Jodie but I have a feeling she could spring a surprise.
You can read more on Jodie below:
Katie Boulter vs Danielle Lao
Katie Boulter is in a section of the draw where I think there is an opportunity. I do think the Brit should beat Lao and I am hoping for a place in the third round for her.
An opponent could be Aryna Sabalenka but I am not sold at the moment by her form, I understand she is the second seed but has never made it past the fourth round of a major and has won 12 of her 23 matches on grass courts.
Maybe I’m getting ahead of myself…
Katie Swan vs Madison Keys
The story of the draw from a British perspective. Katie has been playing only ITF events all year and has had a year of injury issues but has achieved something she described as:
“My biggest accomplishment in tennis”
You could just see the elation and emotion as Swan secured a big win in which she became the first British woman to come through qualifying at Wimbledon for the first time in 20 years.
A wonderful moment!
Her opponent is Madison Keys and she will love it out there and the crowd will bring a wonderful atmosphere.