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By Chris Oddo | Tuesday July 4, 2017

It's Day 2 of the Championships and the lower half of the draw on the men's side and the top half on the women's side are set to begin their quests for Wimbledon immortality. Here's what you need to know...

1. Federer Chasing a Milestone

When the Swiss maestro takes the court in Tuesday’s final match on Centre Court, he’ll be bidding to pass Jimmy Connors and take over Wimbledon’s all-time lead in victories with 85. Federer, who faces Alexandr Dolgopolov for the 4th time, has never lost a set against the Ukrainian and owns a lifetime record of 84-11 at Wimbledon (Connors was 84-18).

2. Kerber Looks for Baby Steps

Angelique Kerber lost in Paris as the top seed, marking just the 5th time that a top-seeded woman has lost her first match at a major. It has never happened at successive majors, and Kerber will seed to avoid infamy on Tuesday as she takes on American Irina Falconi in the first match on Centre Court. Falconi, a qualifier, is ranked 247.

3. Keep an eye on Karolina

Karolina Pliskova, seen by many as a favorite to win Wimbledon, opens accounts on No.1 court with a first-round tussle against Evgeniya Rodina of Russia. Pliskova has never been past the second round at Wimbledon, but the Czech has reached at least the quarterfinal in each of her last three majors. Rodina, ranked 90, is 5-4 lifetime at Wimbledon.


4. The WTA race for No.1 is real


Five players are in the running for WTA top-dog status. Here are the point scenarios for Kerber, Pliskova and Simona Halep to claim the No.1 ranking at the end of the fortnight (Wozniacki and Svitolina also with a longish shot at it).




5. Djokovic and Klizan also on Centre

No.2-seeded Novak Djokovic will take to Centre Court against Slovakia’s Martin Klizan on Day 2, hoping to begin a change of form. It all began to go south for Djokovic here last year when he was upset by Sam Querrey in the third round. But let us not forget that Djokovic is a 12-time major and three-time Wimbledon champ that owns a lifetime record of 54-9 at the Championships. His Day 2 opponent Klizan, meanwhile, is 1-5 lifetime at SW19 and has lost four straight here.

6. The ATP are racing for No. 1 as well

Stan Wawrinka is out of the race after falling to Daniil Medvedev on Day 1, but three players (Federer, Djokovic and Rafael Nadal) have a shot to claim the No.1 ranking. Here are the updated scenarios. Clearly it’s a long shot for Djokovic, but one never knows.



7. Del Potro vs. Kokkinakis

First up on No.2 Court on Day 2 is an enticing battle between No.29-seeded Juan Martin del Potro and Aussie Thanasi Kokkinakis. If it weren’t for a series of debilitating injuries, Kokkinakis might be among the game’s most promising players right now. The same could be said for Del Potro, who is clearly a way better than his current ranking of 32. The 2013 Wimbledon semifinalist owns a 16-7 record at SW19, and has won his first round match on each of his seven appearances here. Meanwhile, Kokkinakis has lost his only previous main draw match at Wimbledon.

8. Pospisil vs. Thiem

Third up on No.1 court is another enticing clash between Dominic Thiem and Vasek Pospisil. Thiem is the favorite but Pospisil’s a dangerous player whose game is better suited for grass. That said, the chasm of big match experience between these two is real. Thiem has the higher ranking and more big-match singles experience, but his 2-3 lifetime record does raise some doubts about the level of his game on grass.

9. Throwback clash on No.2 Court

No.9-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska and Jelena Jankovic will do battle for the tenth time (Radwanska leads 7-2) on Day 2 and this is a match that is somewhat difficult to predict. It hasn’t been Radwanska’s year, and her 11-10 record shows that. But Jankovic is REALLY off her game with a record of 5-15 and four consecutive losses. Neither player has won a match on grass this season. Radwanska is a former finalist at SW19 and is bidding for her 40th career win at Wimbledon.

10. Other must-see first-rounders

Here’s a list of other matches we’ll be keeping tabs on:

Mikhail Youzhny vs. Nicolas Mahut, first on, No.4 Court (for the old dogs and fans of classic grass-court tennis).

Robin Haase vs. Frances Tiafoe, third on No.6 court (Haase’s been fun to watch this summer; Tiafoe makes his Wimbledon main draw debut).

Grigor Dimitrov vs. Diego Schwartzman, third on, No.12 Court (to see what form Dimitrov is going to bring to this fortnight).

Mischa Zverev vs. Bernard Tomic, first on, No.14 Court (should be a stylistically interesting match. Say what you want about Tomic but he is a fascinating player to watch, particularly on this surface).

Garbiné Muguruza vs. Ekaterina Alexandrova, second-on, No.3 Court (will be interesting to see how Muguruza fares without Sam Sumyk present at Wimbledon).

Enjoy the tennis!

 

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