Wimbledon men’s last 16: Murray in battle with colossus Karlovic
A total of 16 men in the singles section will be relieved to have made it to the second week at Wimbledon 2015, where they now battle it out in the fourth round. Coral writers preview the second half of the draw that begins on Monday, July 6th.
Ivo Karlovic v Andy Murray
Britain’s last hope in both the men and ladies’ singles draws (once again), Murray will not be relishing this challenge against big-serving giant veteran Karlovic, who knocked out Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to get to this stage.
Croat Karlovic (13/2 for victory), though, has never beaten the Scot (1/12) in five attempts, including at Wimbledon back in 2012. He lost in four sets that day, and Murray is a more enticing 5/2 to win 3-1 again.
Sets between the duo always tend to be close, with 6ft 11in Karlovic’s only real chance of success coming from a tie-break, with his serve so effective. Half of their 14 sets in total have reached this stage, and so 2/1 title shout Murray is a tempting 3/1 to win the opener 7-6.
Roberto Bautista Agut v Roger Federer
Seven-time champion Federer is in fine form this tournament, with a loss of just one set to his name so far, coming against record quickest server Sam Groth in a tie-break in round three.
Next up, the Swiss star (11/2 for an unprecedented eighth title here) faces perhaps an easier challenge against Spain’s Bautista Agut (9/1), who has lost both his meetings with Federer (heavy 1/20 odds-on favourite).
The 17-time Grand Slam winner has never dropped a set against his upcoming opponent, so is 2/5 to triumph 3-0.
Tomas Berdych v Gilles Simon
Both Berdych and Simon, the latter in particular, had to come through tough tests in the last round, against Pablo Andujar and Gael Monfils respectively, and these battlers could be set for another epic.
In 10 head-to-heads, Frenchman Simon has won six, so is a very tempting 2/1 shout to beat Berdych (2/5), but the duo have never met on grass before.
This is a potential five-setter, so take odds of 11/2 for the Czech, runner-up here in 2010, to triumph 3-2.
Vasek Pospisil v Viktor Troicki
Neither Pospisil (9/4) nor Troicki (4/11) will be that popular with the crowd, after knocking out home hope James Ward and dreadlocked fan favourite Dustin Brown, Rafael Nadal’s conqueror, in the third round.
This will be the pair’s first ever meeting, and this could go the distance too, after Canadian Pospisil has already had to come through two five-setters, while Serb Troicki’s have all gone to four.
Coral’s betting tip – Andy Murray beats Ivo Karlovic 3-1 @ 5/2