Wimbledon 2016: Five men’s singles tips from day one
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | June 26, 2016
2016 Wimbledon men’s singles
- First round (top half)
- Monday, June 27th
- Scheduled on court: 10:00 BST
- All England Club, Wimbledon, southwest London
- Live across the BBC
Plenty of British men to cheer for on day one
World number one Novak Djokovic and seven-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer kick off their first round fixtures on day one of the 2016 Championships, along with the rest of the top half of the men’s draw.
While 5/2 title chance with Coral Andy Murray is not scheduled on court until Tuesday, weather permitting, we have picked out five top tips for the opening day’s action…
Tie-break in Djokovic v Ward match
James Ward will have put his head in his hands after being handed a tie with defending champion Novak Djokovic up first, after perhaps hoping to match his feat of reaching the third round last year.
However, with the crowd no doubt firmly behind the Londoner, the big sever could prove to be a handful for the superstar Serb.
Wildcard Ward may be way down the rankings at 177 currently, but on his day has upset some established names on the comforts of his home soil, having once got to the semis at Queen’s and played a big part in Great Britain’s recent Davis Cup success.
While the tall big-server is highly unlikely to beat Djokovic or even claim a set off him, he is a tempting 9/4 shout to at least take him to a tie-break at some point in the match.
Croats Coric and Karlovic to go the distance
Despite Croatian Borna Coric being almost nearly half the age of 37-year-old compatriot Ivo Karlovic, the teenager has been touted for a promising future in the sport.
Giant ace machine Karlovic loves the grass surface, having reached the quarters here before, further than any other Grand Slam, but is certainly getting on now and could be taken the distance.
In their only previous meeting, Coric was edged out in three sets in Bucharest last year, and the duo are priced at 12/5 to go to five this time around.
Edmund to defeat Mannarino in four
Another young star is in action on day one, and in this case it is the ever-improving Brit Kyle Edmund, who comes into this event on the back of taking Murray to three sets in the quarter-finals at Queen’s.
South African-born Yorkshireman Edmund beat a higher ranked Frenchman at that competition, Gilles Simon, so can certainly do the same to ATP world number 54 Adrian Mannarino.
This is their first duel, but Edmund is a fantastic 4/1 to come through in four sets, and reach the second round here at the fourth time of asking.
Nishikori to beat Groth in five sets
Sam Groth has not had an enjoyable run on tour this year, but holding the record for the fastest ever serve means he’ll be a handful for anyone on the quicker grass courts.
The Australian enjoyed himself at Wimbledon only last year when he got to round three, before being edged out by Federer, so can put up a good fight again.
Kei Nishikori is his first opponent, and going by Grand Slam results this is the talented Japanese star’s least favourite surface, but back the fifth seed to win 3-2 at 6/1.
Willis to continue fairytale run
We finish off with another Briton, although this time someone who the vast majority would never have heard of before this week.
World number 775 Englishman Marcus Willis has done the seemingly impossible by reaching the Wimbledon first round, after coming through six qualifying matches against much higher opposition.
The 25-year-old left-hander, who has been injured for much of 2016, has been handed a relatively favourable draw compared to other Brits against unseeded Lithuanian Ricardas Berankis, so why not back him to continue his run at 12/5?
You’ll find comprehensive coverage of both the Wimbledon men’s and ladies’ singles throughout the championships on the Coral tennis page.