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Wimbledon 2019: Will the 'Big Three' continue to dominate The Championships?

Andrew Hendrie in ATP Tour 27 Jun 2019
  • Hewitt is the last player outside the Big Four to win Wimbledon back in 2002
  • Will Federer, Djokovic or Nadal prevail again, or can somebody else spring a surprise?
Novak Djokovic (PA Images)

Not since 2002 has a man not named Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic or Andy Murray won the Wimbledon title. Will that change in 2019 or is the ‘Big Three’ set to dominate again?

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Wimbledon is used to seeing long stretches of dominance in the men’s singles during the Open Era. It all started with Aussie legends Rod Laver and John Newcombe combining to win the first four Open Era Wimbledon titles, while Bjorn Borg also famously won five straight between 1976-80. John McEnroe and Boris Becker would combine to win five of the next six editions before Pete Sampras became the king of the lawns in the 90s, winning seven titles between 1993 and 2000.

Goran Ivanisevic secured a fairytale Wimbledon crown in 2001 and after Lleyton Hewitt broke the mould and became the first true ‘counterpuncher’ to win The Championships in 2002, we didn’t know what the future had in store. Then Roger Federer came along to win the next five titles and after the Swiss prevailed in 2017, he surpassed Sampras for a record eight trophies at the All England Club, while fellow modern-day legends Novak Djokovic (2011, 2014, 2015, 2018), Rafael Nadal (2008, 2010) and Andy Murray (2013, 2016) have also chipped in over the last decade.

The Big Four have dominated Wimbledon over the last 16 years, but there have been signs their stranglehold on The Championships is relinquishing ever so slightly, with the likes of Milos Raonic, Marin Cilic and Kevin Anderson making the final in each of the last three years. Can somebody else break through and go all the way to the title, or will one of Djokovic, Federer or Nadal lift the trophy once again?

I’ve picked out the players who I think have the best chance of downing the Big Three this year at Wimbledon below…

Dominic Thiem


Currently ranked No. 4 in the world, Thiem has obviously done his best work on clay over the last few years, advancing to the French Open final in each of the last two seasons, where he was stopped by Nadal both times. The Austrian remains capable of taking out the big guns on clay and hardcourt, but his grass-court game is seemingly still a work in progress. And without a proper warm-up tournament on grass, Thiem is more on upset alert in the early rounds than a title contender at Wimbledon…

Alexander Zverev


It might sound crazy, but I’m not completely ruling out Zverev at Wimbledon. Yes, he’s been well below his best all season and was thrashed by Djokovic at Roland Garros, but the German has surely got to break through at the slams at some point? Why not now, when he’s not under that much pressure and nobody is expecting him to do anything significant? Zverev has to be proactive and aggressive with his serve and backhand, but if he can somehow find his best tennis, things could get interesting…

Stefanos Tsitsipas


Tsitsipas has come a long way since making the second week of a slam for the first time at Wimbledon 12 months ago, rising to a career-high No. 6 in the world and scoring the biggest win of his career when he knocked Federer out on his way to the Australian Open semi-finals. The Greek has the belief that he can win Grand Slams, but is he ready to possibly beat Federer and Djokovic back-to-back over the best-of-five sets to secure one?

Kevin Anderson


The big-serving South African experienced an incredible Wimbledon campaign last year, conquering Federer in five sets before coming out on top in a marathon semi-final against John Isner. However, as a result of that, Anderson had nothing left in the tank for the final and was subsequently routined by Djokovic. Only just returning from injury at Queen’s last week, where he was defeated by Gilles Simon, Wimbledon might have come around a bit too soon for the fourth seed…

Daniil Medvedev


Medvedev has lost a bit of steam from his brilliant start to the season, but at his best, the Russian remains a threat at Wimbledon. Medvedev claimed his first top 10 win at the All England Club two years ago when he beat Stan Wawrinka, while he also advanced to the Queen’s semi-finals last week. The 23-year-old has yet to prove himself at slams, reaching the second week just once and is coming off a bad loss at the French Open when he went down to Pierre-Hugues Herbert while leading two sets to love. Again, one of these players will most likely need to beat two of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic to win Wimbledon - can you envision Medvedev doing that?

Felix Auger-Aliassime


The 18-year-old sensation has put together a stellar season in 2019 and is on the cusp of the top 20 after reaching three finals, including on grass in Stuttgart, while he also made the semi-finals of Queen’s. Auger-Aliassime is no doubt a star of the future, but has he developed enough to take out the big guns at slams? Incredibly, this will be the Canadian’s first ever Wimbledon main draw appearance and just his second major main draw overall. Auger-Aliassime’s time will come, but this year will probably be a step too far…

Matteo Berrettini


Berrettini has been playing some top 10 level tennis at various stages during his run to the Stuttgart title and Halle semi-finals in the lead-up to Wimbledon. Equipped with a massive serve and penetrating forehand, Berrettini has the weapons to make a big impact at Wimbledon and he’s certainly someone the top seeds will want to avoid before the quarter-finals. I think Berrettini is capable of scoring one or two big wins and perhaps making a first major R16 or quarter-final, but going any deeper or toppling one of the Big Three is an enormous task.

****

The Championships is live from Wimbledon between July 1-14.


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Wimbledon 2019: Will the 'Big Three' continue to dominate The Championships?

Not since 2002 has a man not named Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic or Andy Murray won the Wimbledon title. Will that change in 2019 or is the ‘Big Three’ set to dominate again?

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