Once again I had a great day at Wimbledon with both the tennis on display and the weather (perhaps too sunny) which held out the whole day.
We arrived quite early to soak up the unique atmosphere and had a look around the outer courts and there was just so much going on everywhere. Frenchmen Tsonga, Monfils and Mahut were on the practice courts with many people looking at them as if they were animals at a zoo or safari.
We also saw Britain’s Heather Watson walking around and signing autographs along with fan favourite Tsonga. You really get a sense of something special at Wimbledon which is unlike any sporting event in the world.
So firstly we had a look around the practice courts and the outer courts which included girls and boys singles. It was pretty surreal to be so close to players and I can’t imagine how much pressure they feel not only playing at Wimbledon but with everyone watching them as well.
After looking around we grabbed some lunch and classic pimms and sat down on Henmann Hill/Murray Mound which I have now found out after thinking it was Murray Mount before. I am still not 100% sure which it is as I have seen and heard people call it both. It was already pretty busy as people queue up for ages just to go there let alone have actual tickets to watch a game.
We were fortunate enough to have tickets to go to Court 1 which was the first time I had been there having previously been to Centre Court and Court 2. I was immediately surprised at how big it was and in some ways I thought it was better than Centre Court as it was more open and spacious.
First up was big serving Canadian Milos Raonic against Albert Ramos-Vinolas (the umpire had a unique high pitched voice which made both the players’ names sound better) who were both seeded so I expected a high quality game. Last year’s finalist Raonic was obviously the favourite but there’s always a chance of an upset in tennis especially on the show courts against high ranked seeds as players play the games of their lives.
I wasn’t disappointed in the match at all and saw Raonic live up to his reputation with his big serves as he constantly hit 130+mph and he even hit 140 at one stage (he could have killed someone!) As someone who plays a bit of tennis I really respect and admire how well he serves especially under pressure.
Ramos-Vinolas definitely gave him a good match with some decent shots but in the end he didn’t have enough quality and Raonic couldn’t be broken. The first set could have gone either way as it went to a tie break but Raonic won it and then won in 3 sets (7-6, 6-4, 7-5). He should go far in the competition and will definitely take some beating with such a powerful serve.
After the match we headed to Murray Mound (which was a lot busier now) and somehow managed to find a place to sit to watch the first set of Djokovic against Gulbis and the number 2 seed struggled until he turned it around and won it 6-4.
We then headed back to Court 1 to see what we thought would be the end of the match between Wozniacki and Kontaveit (no relation to Britain’s Konta). When we got there underdog Kontaveit had won the first set and had broken in the 2nd but Wozniacki showed her quality and why she is 5th seeded to completely turn the game around. This was also due to help from one guy in the crowd who put off Kontaveit by shouting at a crucial point when she was serving for the match.
Since the guy shouted, Kontaveit lost her momentum and Wozniacki broke her and got back into the game. She went on to win the second set tiebreak before winning the third and final set quite easily and won the match (3-6,7-6,6-2). As Serena Williams isn’t playing this year the women’s singles is wide open and many could win including 1st and 2nd seeded Kerber and Halep.
Last on Court 1 was Thiem against Donaldson. I was looking forward to seeing Thiem as I had heard a lot of good things about him but never actually seen him play. He soon showed me why he has been so talked about as he produced some great shots but Donaldson also showed some quality by surprisingly breaking him and taking an early advantage.
Thiem however dug in and got himself back into the set and eventually won it 7-5 with a great last rally which he ended emphatically by smashing a shot. This was actually the point where we left as we had had enough tennis and sun for one day and I think I felt as exhausted as the players!
Thiem went on to win the 2nd and 3rd set quite comfortably 6-4 and 6-2 and so progresses into the next round. Djokovic and Federer also won their respective games and end what has been a great first week of Wimbeldon.
Looking back on the first week only 5th seed Wawrinka was a surprise loss (9th and 12th seeds Nishikori and Tsonga also lost) and the top players look very strong and in good form. It’s hard to look past the so called top 4 and I wouldn’t be surprised if any of them won it or at least got to the final. But Raonic, Cilic and Thiem all have a great chance as well.
I’m not sure if Murray will win again because of his hip injury but he will certainly take some stopping. Nadal looks like he is on the best form out of everyone at the moment and Federer and Djokovic always look strong. They should all get to the semi finals but will there by any upsets?
What a day it was at Wimbledon again and it is definitely one of my favourite sports to watch. I have so much respect for all of the players and can’t wait to hopefully go back there again next year! Wimbledon has to be the best grand slam for me and I’m really looking forward to watching this week and seeing who will win.
So who will win this year? Who will win the Women’s final without the dominant Serena Williams? Will Murray win it for a third time? Will any of the top four win or will there be a shock?