2021 Wimbledon Men's and Women's Singles Picks

Wimbledon gets underway tomorrow and, like I did with the French Open, I wanted to go on the record with my picks (hopefully I have more success this time around). I covered the Men's draw in full, section-by-section, earlier today and, because we had to cancel today's scheduled two-part preview episode of Serve and Volley, I will include some of my thoughts on the Women's draw in this preview.


 

Men's Draw

Round One

1) Novak Djokovic > WC) Jack Draper in 3

Kevin Anderson > Q) Marcelo Tomás Barrios Vera in 4

Andreas Seppi > João Sousa in 4

Q) Denis Kudla > 30) Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in 4

Q) Bernabé Zapata Miralles > 17) Cristian Garín in 4

Q) Marc Polmans > PR) Lu Yen-hsun in 4

Stefano Travaglia > Pedro Martínez in 3

Q) Christopher O'Connell > 13) Gaël Monfils in 5

9) Diego Schwartzman > Benoît Paire in 3

WC) Liam Broady > Marco Cecchinato in 4

Yannick Hanfmann > Jiri Vesely in 3

19) Jannik Sinner > Márton Fucsovics in 4

26) Fabio Fognini > Albert Ramos Viñolas in 3

Laslo Djere > Pablo Cuevas in 4

Lloyd Harris > Ricardas Berankis in 4

5) Andrey Rublev > Federico Delbonis in 3

3) Stefanos Tsitsipas > Frances Tiafoe in 4

Vasek Pospisil > Roberto Carballés Baena in 3

Egor Gerasimov > WC) Jay Clarke in 4

Q) Mackenzie McDonald > 25) Karen Khachanov in 5

22) Dan Evans > Feliciano López in 4

Dušan Lajović > Gilles Simon in 4

Q) Zhang Zhizhen > Q) Antoine Hoang in 4

15) Alex de Minaur > Sebastian Korda in 4

10) Denis Shapovalov > PR) Philipp Kohlschreiber in 3

Pierre-Hugues Herbert > Pablo Andújar in 3

Q) Oscar Otte > Q) Arthur Rinderknech in 5

WC) Andy Murray > 24) Nikoloz Basilashvili in 5

27) Reilly Opelka > Dominik Koepfer in 3

Kwon Soon-woo > Q) Daniel Masur in 3

Miomir Kecmanović > Facundo Bagnis in 3

8) Roberto Bautista Agut > John Millman in 5

7) Matteo Berrettini > Guido Pella in 3

Q) Grégoire Barrère > LL) Botic van de Zandschulp in 4

Corentin Moutet > Aljaž Bedene in 4

28) John Isner > Yoshihito Nishioka in 3

20) Aslan Karatsev > Jérémy Chardy in 4

Ilya Ivashka > Jaume Munar in 3

Kei Nishikori > Alexei Popyrin in 5

12) Casper Ruud > Jordan Thompson in 4

16) Félix Auger-Aliassime > Thiago Monteiro in 3

Mikael Ymer > Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in 3

Gianluca Mager > Juan Ignacio Londero in 3

21) Ugo Humbert > Nick Kyrgios in 5

31) Taylor Fritz > Q) Brandon Nakashima in 5

Steve Johnson > Dennis Novak in 4

Tennys Sandgren > Norbert Gombos in 3

4) Alexander Zverev > Q) Tallon Griekspoor in 3

6) Roger Federer > Adrian Mannarino in 4

Richard Gasquet > Yuichi Sugita in 3

WC) Alex Bolt > Filip Krajinović in 5

29) Cameron Norrie > Lucas Pouille in 3

23) Lorenzo Sonego > Pedro Sousa in 3

Federico Coria > Daniel Elahi Galán in 5

James Duckworth > Radu Albot in 3

Sam Querrey > 11) Pablo Carreño Busta in 5

14) Hubert Hurkacz > Lorezno Musetti in 5

Marcos Giron > Emil Ruusuvuori in 4

Alexander Bublik > Mikhail Kukushkin in 4

18) Grigor Dimitrov > Fernando Verdasco in 3

32) Marin Cilic > Salvatore Caruso in 3

Q) Benjamin Bonzi > Q) Marco Trungelliti in 4

WC) Carlos Alcaraz > LL) Yasutaka Uchiyama in 4

2) Daniil Medvedev > Jan-Lennard Struff in 4

Round Two

1) Novak Djokovic > Kevin Anderson in 4

Q) Denis Kudla > Andreas Seppi in 4

Q) Marc Polmans > Bernabé Zapata Miralles in 3

Stefano Travaglia > Q) Christopher O'Connell in 4

9) Diego Schwartzman > WC) Liam Broady in 5

19) Jannik Sinner > Yannick Hanfmann in 4

26) Fabio Fognini > Laslo Djere in 3

5) Andrey Rublev > Lloyd Harris in 4

3) Stefanos Tsitsipas > Vasek Pospisil in 4

Q) Mackenzie McDonald > Egor Gerasimov in 3

22) Dan Evans > Dušan Lajović in 3

15) Alex de Minaur > Q) Zhang Zhizhen in 3

10) Denis Shapovalov > Pierre-Hugues Herbert in 3

WC) Andy Murray > Q) Oscar Otte in 4

27) Reilly Opelka > Kwon Soon-woo in 3

8) Roberto Bautista Agut > Miomir Kecmanović in 5

7) Matteo Berrettini > Q) Grégoire Barrère in 3

28) John Isner > Corentin Moutet in 3

Ilya Ivashka > 20) Aslan Karatsev in 4

Kei Nishikori > 12) Caper Ruud in 4

16) Félix Auger-Aliassime > Mikael Ymer in 3

21) Ugo Humbert > Gianluca Mager in 3

31) Taylor Fritz > Steve Johnson in 5

4) Alexander Zverev > Tennys Sandgren in 4

6) Roger Federer > Richard Gasquet in 3

29) Cameron Norrie > WC) Alex Bolt in 3

23) Lorenzo Sonego > Federico Coria in 3

Sam Querrey > James Duckworth in 4

Marcos Giron > 14) Hubert Hurkacz in 4

18) Grigor Dimitrov > Alexander Bublik in 4

32) Marin Cilic > Q) Benjamin Bonzi in 3

2) Daniil Medvedev > WC) Carlos Alcaraz in 3

Round Three

1) Novak Djokovic > Q) Denis Kudla in 3

Stefano Travaglia > Q) Marc Polmans in 4

19) Jannik Sinner > 9) Diego Schwartzman in 4

5) Andrey Rublev > 26) Fabio Fognini in 3

3) Stefanos Tsitsipas > Q) Mackenzie McDonald in 3

15) Alex de Minaur > 22) Dan Evans in 3

10) Denis Shapovalov > WC) Andy Murray in 3

27) Reilly Opelka > 8) Roberto Bautista Agut in 4

7) Matteo Berrettini > 28) John Isner in 4

Kei Nishikori > Ilya Ivashka in 5

16) Félix Auger-Aliassime > 21) Ugo Humbert in 4

4) Alexander Zverev > 31) Taylor Fritz in 3

6) Roger Federer > 29) Cameron Norrie in 4

Sam Querrey > 23) Lorenzo Sonego in 4

18) Grigor Dimitrov > Marcos Giron in 3

2) Daniil Medvedev > 32) Marin Cilic in 4

Round Four

1) Novak Djokovic > Stefano Travaglia in 3

5) Andrey Rublev > 19) Jannik Sinner in 4

15) Alex de Minaur > 3) Stefanos Tsitsipas in 5

27) Reilly Opelka > 10) Denis Shapovalov in 5

7) Matteo Berrettini > Kei Nishikori in 3

16) Félix Auger-Aliassime > 4) Alexander Zverev in 5

6) Roger Federer > Sam Querrey in 4

2) Daniil Medvedev > 18) Grigor Dimitrov in 4

Quarterfinals

1) Novak Djokovic > 5) Andrey Rublev in 3

15) Alex de Minaur > 27) Reilly Opelka in 4

7) Matteo Berrettini > 16) Félix Auger-Aliassime in 4

2) Daniil Medvedev > 6) Roger Federer in 5

Semifinals

1) Novak Djokovic > 15) Alex de Minaur in 3

7) Matteo Berrettini > 2) Daniil Medvedev in 4

Final

1) Novak Djokovic > 7) Matteo Berrettini (6-3, 6-7, 7-5, 6-2)

 

Women's Draw


Before I give my picks on the Women's side, I have to mention my strategy change. My French Open picks were bad, and while nobody was able to predict the randomness of this years' Roland-Garros, I still felt like I needed to adjust the way I pick. We know the women's draw is always wide open, and that should be the case more than ever at Wimbledon considering the lack of grass court play post-pandemic, so for these picks I just went with my gut. Maybe it is foolish, but I didn't do any analyzing this time around. I just looked at the draw, thought about what I've seen over the last three weeks on the grass (and throughout the year/players' entire careers, of course) and made a pick. Hopefully I have better success (luck) this time or else it's back to the drawing board again.


Round One

1) Ashleigh Barty > PR) Carla Suárez Navarro in 2

Anna Blinkova > Tímea Babos in 2

Q) Olga Govortsova > PR) CoCo Vandeweghe in 3

Katerina Siniaková > LL) Wang Yafan in 2

Marta Kostyuk > 17) Kiki Bertens in 2

Anastasija Sevastova > Zarina Diyas in 2

Jasmine Paolini > PR) Andrea Petkovic in 3

Clara Tauson > 14) Barbora Krejcíková in 3

12) Victoria Azarenka > PR) Kateryna Kozlova in 2

Sorana Cîrstea > WC) Samantha Murray Sharan in 2

Q) Vitalia Diatchenko > WC) Emma Raducanu in 2

24) Anett Kontaveit > Markéta Vondroušová in 2

31) Daria Kasatkina > Patricia Maria Tig in 2

Jelena Ostapenko > Leylah Annie Fernandez in 2

Q) Greet Minnen > Ajla Tomljanović in 3

Alizé Cornet > 5) Bianca Andreescu in 3

3) Elina Svitolina > Alison Van Uytvanck in 2

Amanda Anisimova > Magda Linette in 3

Yulia Putintseva > Q) Lesia Tsurenko in 3

30) Paula Badosa > Aliona Bolsova in 2

19) Karolína Muchová > Zhang Shuai in 2

Camila Giorgi > Jil Teichmann in 2

Kristyna Plíšková > Danka Kovinić in 2

16) Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova > Ana Bogdan in 2

9) Belinda Bencic > Kaja Juvan in 2

Q) Clara Burel > Q) Ellen Perez in 2

Martina Trevisan > PR) Elena Vesnina in 2

20) Coco Gauff > WC) Francesca Jones in 2

25) Angelique Kerber > Nina Stojanović in 2

Sara Sorribes Tormo > Q) Ana Konjuh in 3

Bernarda Pera > Nao Hibino in 2

6) Serena Williams > Aliaksandra Sasnovich in 3

8) Karolína Plíšková > Tamara Zidanšek in 2

Donna Vekić > Anastasia Potapova in 3

Nadia Podoroska > Ann Li in 3

28) Alison Riske > Tereza Martincová in 2

22) Jessica Pegula > Caroline Garcia in 2

WC) Liudmila Samsonova > Kaia Kanepi in 2

Heather Watson > LL) Kristie Ahn in 2

10) Petra Kvitová > Sloane Stephens in 2

13) Elise Mertens > WC) Harriet Dart in 3

PR) Mona Barthel > Zhu Lin in 2

Lauren Davis > WC) Jodie Burrage in 3

23) Madison Keys > Q) Katie Swan in 3

Viktorija Golubic > 29) Veronika Kudermetova in 3

Danielle Collins > Polona Hercog in 3

Christina McHale > Madison Brengle in 2

Q) Wang Xinyu > 4) Sofia Kenin in 3

7) Iga Światek > Hsieh Su-wei in 2

Marie Bouzková > Vera Zvonareva in 3

Q) Katie Volynets > Irina-Camelia Begu in 2

26) Petra Martić > Varvara Gracheva in 2

21) Ons Jabeur > Rebecca Peterson in 2

PR) Mihaela Buzarnescu > Venus Williams in 2

Svetlana Kuznetsova > Q) Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove in 3

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > Fiona Ferro in 2

15) Maria Sakkari > Arantxa Rus in 2

Shelby Rogers > PR) Samantha Stosur in 2

Misaki Doi > Q) Claire Liu in 3

18) Elena Rybakina > Kristina Mladenovic in 2

32) Ekaterina Alexandrova > Laura Siegemund in 3

Q) Anna Kalinskaya > Q) María Camila Osorio Serrano in 2

WC) Katie Boulter > Q) Danielle Lao in 2

2) Aryna Sabalenka > Q) Monica Niculescu in 3

Round Two

1) Ashleigh Barty > Anna Blinkova in 2

Katerina Siniaková > Q) Olga Govortsova in 2

Anastasija Sevastova > Marta Kostyuk in 3

Clara Tauson > Jasmine Paolini in 2

12) Victoria Azarenka > Sorana Cîrstea in 3

24) Anett Kontaveit > Q) Vitalia Diatchenko in 2

Jelena Ostapenko > 31) Daria Kasatkina in 2

Alizé Cornet > Q) Greet Minnen in 2

3) Elina Svitolina > Amanda Anisimova in 3

30) Paula Badosa > Yulia Putintseva in 3

Camila Giorgi > 19) Karolína Muchová in 3

16) Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova > Kristyna Plíšková in 2

9) Belinda Bencic > Q) Clara Burel in 3

20) Coco Gauff > Martina Trevisan in 2

25) Angelique Kerber > Sara Sorribes Tormo in 2

6) Serena Williams > Bernarda Pera in 2

8) Karolína Plíšková > Donna Vekić in 3

28) Alison Riske > Nadia Podoroska in 2

WC) Liudmila Samsonova > 22) Jessica Pegula in 3

10) Petra Kvitová > Heather Watson in 2

13) Elise Mertens > PR) Mona Barthel in 2

23) Madison Keys > Lauren Davis in 2

Danielle Collins > Viktorija Golubic in 3

Christina McHale > Q) Wang Xinyu in 2

7) Iga Światek > Marie Bouzková in 3

26) Petra Martić > Q) Katie Volynets in 2

21) Ons Jabeur > PR) Mihaela Buzarnescu in 2

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > Svetlana Kuznetsova in 2

Shelby Rogers > 15) Maria Sakkari in 3

18) Elena Rybakina > Misaki Doi in 2

32) Ekaterina Alexandrova > Q) Anna Kalinskaya in 3

2) Aryna Sabalenka > WC) Katie Boulter in 2

Round Three

1) Ashleigh Barty > Katerina Siniaková in 3

Clara Tauson > Anastasija Sevastova in 2

24) Anett Kontaveit > 12) Victoria Azarenka in 3

Jelena Ostapenko > Alizé Cornet in 3

3) Elina Svitolina > 30) Paula Badosa in 3

Camila Giorgi > 16) Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in 3

20) Coco Gauff > 9) Belinda Bencic in 3

25) Angelique Kerber > 6) Serena Williams in 3

28) Alison Riske > 8) Karolína Plíšková in 3

10) Petra Kvitová > WC) Liudmila Samsonova in 2

23) Madison Keys > 13) Elise Mertens in 2

Christina McHale > Danielle Collins in 3

26) Petra Martić > 7) Iga Światek in 3

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > 21) Ons Jabeur in 2

18) Elena Rybakina > Shelby Rogers in 3

2) Aryna Sabalenka > 32) Ekaterina Alexandrova in 2

Round Four

1) Ashleigh Barty > Clara Tauson in 2

Jelena Ostapenko > 24) Anett Kontaveit in 3

Camila Giorgi > 3) Elina Svitolina in 3

25) Angelique Kerber > 20) Coco Gauff in 2

10) Petra Kvitová > 28) Alison Riske in 3

23) Madison Keys > Christina McHale in 3

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > 26) Petra Martíc in 2

18) Elena Rybakina > 2) Aryna Sabalenka in 3

Quarterfinals

1) Ashleigh Barty > Jelena Ostapenko in 2

25) Angelique Kerber > Camila Giorgi in 2

10) Petra Kvitová > 23) Madison Keys in 3

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > 18) Elena Rybakina in 2

Semifinals

1) Ashleigh Barty > 25) Angelique Kerber in 3

11) Garbiñe Muguruza > 10) Petra Kvitová in 3

Final

1) Ashleigh Barty > 11) Garbiñe Muguruza (6-2, 1-6, 6-4)


What I'm Looking At By Section/Justifying My Picks


Section 1: I'm looking directly at world no. 1 Ashleigh Barty here. After retiring in round two

of the French Open, Barty didn't play at any of the lead-up grass tournaments. Despite that, due to her balanced game and strong play at the net, I'm looking at the Australian as the favorite not only to win this section but to win the tournament. In this section I am also looking to see how Barbora Krejcíková follows up her surprise win in Paris. We also have two women who are playing in their last Wimbledon, Carla Suárez Navarro and Kiki Bertens. When it comes to a sleeper, keep an eye on Katerina Siniaková who is fresh off of a finals appearance in Bad Homburg.


Section 2: In section 2, all the attention should be on Bianca Andreescu. She got a brutal draw having to play Alizé Cornet, who she lost to a few weeks ago in Berlin, in the first round. I like Cornet to "upset" the struggling world number five who just won her first WTA match on grass last week. If Andreescu wins, I would love to see her get on a run and use her power game to dominate the fast courts. Regarding my Ostapenko pick, there is definitely some recency bias involved. She looked so good in Eastbourne this week that I couldn't help but pick the 24-year-old to navigate through a relatively open draw.


Section 3: This is probably the most open section and, once again, my recency bias is at work. Camila Giorgi had massive wins over Aryna Sabalenka and Karolína Plíšková in Eastbourne, and I expect the 2018 Wimbledon quarterfinalist to carry that momentum into another second week run. It is also worth keeping an eye on Elina Svitolina, a semifinalist in London in 2019, as she continues her quest to regain her consistency at the Grand Slams.


Section 4: This section is defined by three players: Serena, Coco and Kerber. Most sections have five or six women that I could realistically see in the quarterfinals, but here I would be shocked if it were someone other than these three. While I'll be rooting for Serena to get her 24th slam, or Coco to make the deep run that she should've made three weeks ago in Paris, a combination of more recency bias and a reverse jinx has me picking Angelique Kerber. Kerber won the title this past week in Bad Homburg and looked great doing it. The three-time Grand Slam champion (including Wimbledon 2018) is peaking at the right time and now looks like the favorite if the blockbuster third round match between her and Serena were to happen. Serena has the most upside of the three in this section, as she could easily find her best form and march through these tough tests. However, she is 39-years-old and has struggled all year, so maybe expectations shouldn't be too high. Regardless, this may be her last-best chance to win a Grand Slam, so all eyes will be on the GOAT. All eyes will certainly be looking ahead to the potential Serena vs. Coco clash in round four, but we'll see if Kerber can get in the way.


Section 5: For me, this section boils down to the two big serving Czech women, 8-seed Karolína Plíšková and 10-seed Petra Kvitová, against the field. Kvitová is a two-time champion on the London grass and looked good in Bad Homburg, so I went with her as the section winner. If the section winner comes from outside the Czech Republic, I like Alison Riske, who came painstakingly close to upsetting Serena here in 2019 (after beating Barty in the previous round) as a darkhorse contender.


Section 6: This section is all about the Americans, especially Madison Keys and Sofia Kenin. Kenin had an immediate test in Paris when she played Ostapenko, and she handled it very well. At Wimbledon, I worry that playing a qualifier in round one may actually work against her. Hopefully I'm wrong, but I feel a major first round upset here. Regarding Keys, she is starting to find her footing once again. She hasn't made the quarterfinals at Wimbledon since 2015, but I think this draw has fallen perfectly for her. If it is not Keys, Americans Danielle Collins, Christina McHale and Lauren Davis are all sleepers.


Section 7: There are two big questions in this section: how will Iga Światek play on the grass? And how healthy is Garbiñe Muguruza? Światek has played down her chances at Wimbledon due to her inexperience on the surface, so that may rule her out of week two contention. That leaves Muguruza as the heavy favorite here, but nagging injuries have led to some inconsistent results recently. I like Muguruza to stay healthy and make a deep run at the tournament she won in 2017.


Section 8: In Paris, everybody, myself included, expected Aryna Sabalenka to finally make a leap at a Grand Slam. That is the case again here, but after a subpar grass court season, I think we may have to wait until the US Open. That opens the section up for French Open semifinalist Maria Sakkari and 18-seed Elena Rybakina. Rybakina has been having the best season of her career, and I like her to make a second-straight Grand Slam quarterfinal.


Quarterfinals-Finals: I'm feeling good about my picks. Of the eight quarterfinalists, I only have two top-ten players. This seems consistent with the way these Women's grand slams have been going, so I just have to hope I picked the right "outsiders." With all that being said, I still have the world no. 1, Ashleigh Barty, winning her first Wimbledon title. Her game is just too well suited for grass for me to not put my trust in her. Trust also plays a role in my Muguruza final pick, as, with Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka out, I feel like she and Barty are the two most consistent performers in the women's game. I think that we'll have two great semifinals with multi-time Grand Slam champions Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitová pushing the finalists to the brink. I hope that Madison Keys can exceed my expectations, and think the potential quarterfinal with Kvitová could be an epic. Regarding my sleeper quarterfinal picks, if Jelena Ostapenko, Elena Rybakina and Camila Giorgi just get to that stage it will be a success (both for them and for me with my picks).

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