World No. 5 Roger Federer has suggested that the trio of Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are still the favourites to win Wimbledon that will commence on July 3rd despite their injury and form concerns. The big four have won the Grand Slam event since 2002 when Lleyton Hewitt had won it.
Andy Murray has had a rough season so far with a stumbling start to his grass-court season at Queen's where he was eliminated early. On the other hand, Rafael Nadal has been in scintillating form on clay where he bagged his record tenth French Open title and Novak Djokovic ran into form at the recently concluded Eastbourne Open where he bagged the title after defeating Gael Monfils.
When Roger Federer was questioned by the media on which of the youngsters according to him is the favourite to make it big at the Grand Slam event the 18-time Grand Slam champion replied that the trio of Murray, Nadal and Djokovic who are in their 30's will still be "tough to beat”.
Speaking to Reuters, Federer said, “
“I think it’s very even when we put it all out on the line. Everybody has their own little story right now. Queen’s for Andy (where he was knocked out early) doesn’t matter so much because I feel like he’s one of the best players in the first week at Wimbledon, so I don’t worry too much
“Novak is just coming back from winning Eastbourne now. Rafa is coming in red hot from the clay. So I see it positive for them rather than negative in some shape, which I’m sure people will try to see that way.
“But I see that they are going to be tough to beat
The 35-year old, however, insisted that the players who have dominated Wimbledon can end up on the receiving end while expecting names like Milos Raonic, Kei Nishikori, Grigor Dimitrov, Alexander Zverev, Nick Kyrgios and Dominic Thiem to go deep in the tournament.
“Yeah, it’s been very dominant by a few players here at Wimbledon. That’s surprising. It’s like that — but it can change tomorrow very quickly,” he said.
“Then, I do believe the favourites are the other players. I include the likes of (Marin) Cilic into that, Stan (Wawrinka), guys who have done it before,” added the Swiss.
Federer himself has been in terrific form from the start of this year when he defeated Rafael Nadal twice in the finals of the Australian Open and the Miami Open to bag the titles and also won the Indian Wells Masters. The Swiss recently won his ninth Halle Open title that is termed to be his favourite warm-up event before Wimbledon.
However, the 35-year old skipped the clay court season in a bid to prepare for Wimbledon and shed light on the same.
“No compromise really. I gave myself the best chance for the grass, so I would never look back and have regrets once I came here,” he said.
“Even though I was happy on the clay for a couple days, I just felt like, you know what, anything other than winning there feels like I’m not giving myself the best chance for Wimbledon.”