Manic Monday: Ones to Watch

If all goes to plan on Manic Monday at Wimbledon we will whittle down from 32 singles players to 16 across the mens and women’s draws, but who should we be keeping an eye on?

Karolina Muchova

Muchova is a dangerous player when it comes to major, since the start of 2020 more than 50% of her wins on the tour have come at majors. 14 wins in 6 majors compared to 9 wins at 10 WTA events and is one of only a few woman to have made the third round of four consecutive majors.

She does play with great confidence in her game on these big stages, I am pleased to see her playing well and with some consistency I do believe top 15 is a possibility.

A tough match against the very in-form Paula Badosa who was sensational on clay!

Emma Raducanu

Well, where do I start?

Wimbledon debut, the last Brit standing, youngest female Brit into the fourth round since 1959!

The performance against Cirstea was a show of strength and the passing shots and backhand was relentless, it was PlayStation tennis.

Madison Keys

The American has quietly gone about her business at Wimbledon, under the radar and it would be a nice moment for her to keep her run going.

It seems like a life-times ago now that Madison was in the final eight at Wimbledon back in 2015, her last major appearance in the final eight was two years ago in Paris.

The 26 year old hasn’t dropped a set this week on her way to the fourth round and disposed of Mertens with great ease and it looks soo good when she hits the ball cleanly.

Ons Jabeur

The rise of the Tunisian over the last couple of years has been magnificent! She recently became the first Arab women to win a WTA title in Birmingham and was runner-up in the doubles at the Wimbledon warm-up.

Wins over Venus Williams and Garbine Muguruza have shown off her exceptional tennis skill and the level she is playing at right now. 

Venus had some lovely words to say about Ons after their match…

Next up for Ons is a tricky opponent in Iga Swiatek, the Pole had a good battle with Hsieh Su-Wei in round one and since then has bulldozed her way through to the final 16.

Seb Korda

He is a wonderful talent, I think his ground strokes are some of the best on the tour especially his backhand.

He made his mark at French Open last year and is going in a good direction this year. He hasn’t even played 50 tour matches and is No.50 in the world and guaranteed to continue to go up the rankings.

A big day for him on Monday against Karen Khachanov who will be feeling the pressure, I think Seb has the game to take him out. Karen’s game is a bit too flat in the nicest way, it hasn’t kicked on. 

Korda has already defeated Alex de Minaur and Dan Evans and could be celebrating big on his 21st birthday on Monday!

Denis Shapovalov

Does Denis have an advantage from his second round walk-over? I think so, I liked his performance in round three against Andy Murray, it was a classy show of skill.

I’ve been waiting for some more consistency after the run to the final eight in New York last year but has only played in Melbourne since. 37 wins in 65 matches since the beginning last year, he is player that plays a lot even in a pandemic year and maybe that is his downfall.

Agut will be a tough opponent but realistically I’m looking at this expecting the win from Shapovalov, he has been playing well and I do think is a better grass court player. 

Liudmila Samsonova

Karolina Pliskova I reckon is looking on a little nervous.

Not long ago we didn’t know if Liudmila would be playing at Wimbledon, she stormed her way through qualifying in Berlin to beat Azarenka and Bencic to win the title. Wimbledon then opted to give her a wildcard and the results have followed.

6-4 6-2 vs Kanepi
6-4 3-6 6-3 vs Pegula
6-2 2-6 6-4 vs Stephens

She has come out of an awkward part of the draw and some tough players. Pliskova hasn’t dropped a set so far but no one has climbed the rankings more than Liudmilla of late. 106 to 63 and is guaranteed to be top 55 in a weeks’ time and a win over Pliskova could see the Russia knocking on the door of the top 40!

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