Wimbledon Tennis Championship, an Acid Test for Top Players: Federer, Nadal, William Sisters, Maria Sharapova

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Wimbledon Tennis Championship, an Acid Test for Top Players: Federer, Nadal, William Sisters, Maria Sharapova

Wimbledon Tennis Championship might be considered just another Grand Slam event in the Tennis circuit but for the fans, it is the acid test for the top players in the world. The player who wins here is considered the best in the world, and the race for the best has begun this year. Although defending champion Roger Federer nearly crashed out of the first round on the first day, he defied all odds to come back and win the match. The world number 2 had been 1/100 to win his first round match and as always is the 11/8 favourite to win his sixth title, but his first round scare, the fans and odds might reconsider their chances.

The second seed and world number Rafael Nadal of Spain has been in tremendous form recently and won the French Open last month without dropping a single set. However, on grass, he is at times unconvincing, and his record of one win in the grand finale is a proof of that. Even then, his fans will be backing him for a repeat win at odds of 9/4, and would like him to take the Cup.

No player besides Federer and Nadal has won the Wimbledon in the last 5 years, but the locals feel that if anyone can win the event besides these two, it’s local King of Tennis, Andy Murray who is at 9/1 to become the first British player in the Open Era to clinch the title.

There are a few who feel that last year’s finalist Andy Roddick might reach his fourth final at The All England’s Club, and is rated as an 11/1 chance by one betting website. Former champion Lleyton Hewitt is also among the ‘wannabe’ players and his odds have increased after he defeated Roger Federer, at Halle last week to stake a claim at the trophy that was once his.

In the Women's event, not many players have won the event besides the Williams sisters - Serena and Venus. Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova and the retired French player Amelie Mauresmo have been the only players to have lifted the trophy this millennium. Besides the Williams, whereas comeback queens from Belgium, Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters will be hoping to get their hands on the trophy that has so far eluded them.

On the first day of the event, mixed results welcomed the seeded women stars. While former champion Maria Sharapova beat countrywoman Anastasia Pivovarova 6-1, 6-0 to reach the second round, the number 7 seed from Poland, Agnieszka Radwanska downed Hungary’s Melinda Czink 6-3, 6-3. Last year's French Open champion and No. 19 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia defeated Uzbekistan’s Akgul Amanmuradova 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, with Italy’s Flavia Pennetta and Jie Zheng of China among other women’s seeds to advance.

The ones to lose include French Open champion Francesca Schiavone of Italy, who suffered a shock defeat in the first round. She lost to Russia’s No. 56 Vera Dushevina in their gruelling first round match. Former world number 1, Serbia's Ana Ivanovic also became an opening day casualty and if other Russians perform the way her countrywomen has done, they might secure the two out of 4 positions in the semi finals. Players like Nadia Petrova, Alla Kudryavtseva, Maria Kirillenko and Vera Zvonaryova have come into this tournament in good form, and if luck helps them, they might have a good start at the prestigious tennis tournament.

A first round exit welcomed the runner-up at the French Open this month, Samantha Stosur of Australia, who lost her first round match 6-4, 6-4 against Estonia’s Kaia Kanepi. Nevertheless, no matter who wins or loses, the betting syndicate will place its money on the Williams, who have been phenomenal whenever they have played in Wimbledon. They will not worry about their loss in the singles event at Roland Garros earlier this month, and would be hoping to further strengthen their ranking by taking the trophy at All England's Club. 



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