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By Chris Oddo | Friday June 30, 2017

Overall the Wimbledon men’s singles draw provides us with a bit of a mixed bag. There are challenges awaiting each member of the big four—those gentlemen that have combined to win each of the last fourteen Wimbledon men’s singles titles. But if each manages to get his game going, there will be ample opportunities for the likes of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to make it to the Promised Land at this year’s Championships.

View the Complete Wimbledon Men's Singles Draw Here

Without any further ado, let’s look at the winners, losers, enticing first-round matchups and possible headline clashes created by Friday’s Wimbledon draw.

1. Andy Murray vs. Dustin Brown could be an awesome second-round clash.

We all remember what Dustin Brown did to Rafael Nadal in 2015 at Wimbledon, when he took down Nadal in four sets. And that’s not the only time that Brown has wowed the Wimbledon faithful with his gorgeous grass-court tennis. The pair have not met since 2010, but if it happens it could be a dramatic match. Murray isn’t exactly in form right now, and on grass Brown can be as dangerous as he is entertaining.

Both players have to win a round to make it happen, but Murray vs. Brown will be one of the most highly anticipated matches of the first week if it happens.

2. Khachanov, Rublev, Medvedev to make Wimbledon debut

The three youngest Russians in the Top 100 (and the two top Russians and three of the top 5) will make their Wimbledon main draw debuts this week. Karen Khachanov has the highest ranking and maybe has the game that his best-suited for grass, but don’t sleep on Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev. Medvedev faces No.5-seeded Stan Wawrinka in his opener, while Khachanov (Kuznetsov) and Rublev (Travaglia) have winnable matches.

3. Federer Opens with Alexandr Dolgopolov

The way that Roger Federer is playing on grass right now there really is no tricky opening-round matchup, but facing athletic, unpredictable Alexandr Dolgopolov is one of the closest things we could find. The Ukranian has done some good things on grass in his career (23-18 lifetime with two semifinals to his name). Federer has won all three matches and all six sets he has played against Dolgopolov, but they have never met on grass.


4. Djokovic vs. Del Potro, possible blockbuster third-rounder

Novak Djokovic and Juan Martin del Potro have played a few classics on Wimbledon’s lawns before—and they may be doing it again next weekend. The Serb, who opens his fortnight by facing Martin Klizan (The Slovakian is 4-11 lifetime on grass with six straight losses on the surface if you're scoring at home) could find himself across from the Tower of Tandil in the third round. The last time they met at Wimbledon, Djokovic needed five sets to get past Del Potro.

Somebody was going to draw the dangerous Argentine in the third round. Tough luck for Djokovic that it was him.

5. Nadal’s section littered with hard servers.

At first glance Rafael Nadal’s section of the draw doesn’t look all that crazy. But upon further inspection, he could be in for a very rough go. Potential third round: Karen Khachanov; Potential fourth round: Gilles Muller or Ivo Karlovic; Potential quarterfinal: Marin Cilic. If any—or even worse, all—of these players hit their stride on the grass, they could prove to be very difficult opponents for two-time Wimbledon champion Nadal due to their first-strike capabilities.

6. Tommy Haas could be looking at a last Wimbledon win, maybe more.

The German opens with Belgian qualifier Ruben Bemelmans. Then he’ll face the winner of Stan Wawrinka vs. Daniil Medvedev. Not the worst draw for the 39-year-old fan favorite. If he’s healthy, who knows, maybe he does something magical.


7. Fun first-rounder: Denis Shapovalov vs. Jerzy Janowicz.

Another promising grass-courter that is making his Wimbledon main draw debut is last year’s boys’ singles winner, Denis Shapovalov of Canada. The 18-year-old will take on 2013 semifinalist Jerzy Janowicz of Poland, who has not won a match at the All England Club since 2014 (though he did upset Grigor Dimitrov at Stuttgart on grass just a few weeks ago).

8. One of the best potential third-rounders: Nick Kyrgios vs. Lucas Pouille.

Tucked neatly into Andy Murray’s section of the draw are two very promising players that have only met once at the tour-level (won by Kyrgios last year in Cincinnati), and never on grass. Both have reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon before (Kyrgios has reached the second week three years running at Wimbledon).


9. Watch out for Feliciano Lopez

Coming off the biggest title of his career of his career at Queen’s, the Spaniard is in Novak Djokovic’s section of the draw and could face the Serb in the fourth round.

10. Some great first-rounders to get jazzed about.

[29] Juan Martin del Potro vs. Thanasi Kokkinakis
[22] Richard Gasquet vs. David Ferrer
[8] Dominic Thiem vs. Vasek Pospisil
[27] Mischa Zverev vs. Bernard Tomic
Nicolas Mahut vs. Mikhail Youzhny

 

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