Aussies avoid big guns in Wimbledon openers
Australia's men have dodged the big guns in the Wimbledon draw but tough seeded players loom large in the second round for the likes of Lleyton Hewitt, Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios.
Australia’s men have dodged the big guns in the Wimbledon draw but tough seeded players loom large in the second round for the likes of Lleyton Hewitt, Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios.
From Friday’s draw, only three of Australia’s eight male players will play seeded players first up but leading woman Sam Stosur must overcome tough opponents to progress past the third round for the first time.
Australia’s top-ranked male Hewitt faces 117th-ranked Michal Przysiezny of Poland in the first round on Tuesday.
However, the the 2002 champion’s hopes of making one last run deep into the draw will hinge on a likely clash with another Pole – Jerzy Janowicz – in the second round.
Janowicz, the 15th seed, reached the semifinals last year.
Tomic, who made the last 16 a year ago, was handed a favourable first-round match-up against Russian Evgeny Donskoy on Monday but a win would likely set up a showdown with sixth seed Tomas Berdych, the man who knocked him out last year.
Rising teenager Kyrgios, a wildcard entrant making his main draw debut, meets French veteran Stephane Robert and could then play the winner of French 13th seed Richard Gasquet or Australian qualifier James Duckworth.
Marinko Matosevic, Matt Ebden and Sam Groth were all pitted against seeds.
Matosevic has a tough assignment against Spain’s Fernando Verdasco, the 18th seed, while Ebden plays Canadian eighth seed Milos Raonic. Big-serving Groth meets Ukrainian 21st seed Alexander Dolgopolov.
Former top-ranked junior and qualifier Luke Saville plays rising Austrian Dominic Thiem in the first round.
Australia’s women also dodged the big guns but Stosur has a tricky first-up assignment against rising Belgian Yanina Wickmayer.
She could then meet dangerous New Zealander Marina Erakovic before a possible third-round meeting with former world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, who eliminated her in Eastbourne this week.
Casey Dellacqua faces Estonian qualifier Anett Kontaveit – who beat her doubles partner Ash Barty in the final round of qualifying – in round one while wildcard Jarmila Gajdosova plays Swiss Stefanie Voegele.
Andy Murray will start his title defence against Belgian David Goffin and could face top-seeded Novak Djokovic in the semifinals.
Second-seeded Rafael Nadal is in the bottom half with seven-time champion Roger Federer.
In the women’s draw, top-ranked and five-time champion Serena Williams is in the same quarter as French Open winner Maria Sharapova.