2013 Wimbledon Preview: 10 Things to Look for During Fortnight

2013 Wimbledon Preview: 10 Things to Look for During Fortnight

There are four Grand Slams in tennis, but there is one that stands out the most. Wimbledon. What makes Wimbledon so special? There is the gorgeous grass surface, strawberries and cream, the crazy England weather, the fact it was the first Grand Slam tournament (established in 1877), and it is the only one that still uses grass. It brings everyone back to the sport’s humble beginnings.

Wimbledon in 2013 will be just as special and unique as always. Here are a few things to look for at Wimbledon.

1. The Men’s Four Major Players

This will be the first time all four men major players will be involved in a Grand Slam since last year: Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, and Rafael Nadal. Nadal was defeated in the second round last year and missed seven months. Murray pulled out of the French Open a few weeks ago due to a bad back and Nadal was injured in last year’s Wimbledon. But now they will be reunited except one of them is not seeded #4.

2. David Ferrer Seeded Above Rafael Nadal

In a surprising twist of events Ferrer, who only reached his first Grand Slam title match a few weeks ago at the French Open, is seeded above Nadal. Yes, Nadal missed seven months where he did not play tennis, but he has proven since his comeback he is the same player, maybe even better, as last year. This is not to take anything from Ferrer. He did take over the #4 spot when Nadal and Murray were out for a good reason. He is a great tennis player. Receiving a high seed is a great opportunity for him to prove his visit to the French Open final was not a fluke. This could be the tournament that proves Ferrer deserves to be on the same pedestal as the others.

3. Serena Williams

No need for a deeper title description because the name says it all. She is the reigning champion and on a 31-match winning streak. Only Williams can defeat herself. Maria Sharapova could be the only one who stands in her way, but the French Open final showed she does not offer much of a challenge to Williams. Plus Sharapova has lost the last 13 times the two met. There will be some upsets leading up to the final, but it will be Williams holding the trophy.

4. The British Drought

The British Drought at Wimbledon is equivalent to the Chicago Cubs World Series drought. Fred Perry won in 1936 and Murray is their best chance to end it. Last year, Murray reached the final, but lost to Federer in four sets. That was the first time a British player played in the final since 1938. Murray now has an Olympic gold medal, which he won in London, and a US Open title. While he has a really good chance to win his bad back is still something to consider. Even though he pulled out of the French Open to rest will he be back in form?

5. The King Of Grass

Nadal is the King of Clay, but Federer is the King of Grass. Nadal won his eighth French Open and Federer could match that at Wimbledon. This is his best surface and this is the tournament that brought him into the international spotlight 10 years ago. While he is the #3 seed and he has shown some signs of wearing down it would be foolish to count him out on his surface.

6. Lack Of American Men

The days of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi are long gone and it does not appear another is anywhere close to taking the spotlight. It will be the first Wimbledon without Andy Roddick. He retired after last year’s US Open. Roddick was the closest America had to making a mark in men’s tennis. There is John Isner, Sam Querrey, and Ryan Harrison, but none of them will make it past the third round.

7. There Are Plenty of American Women

America lacks the men, but they are a dominant force in women’s tennis. Obviously, Serena Williams leads the pack, but Sloane Stephens, who upset Williams in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, and Bethanie Mattek-Sands are not far behind. Mattek-Sands upset Li Na early in the French Open. Varvara Lepchenko, Jamie Hampton, and Madison Keys are not far behind.

8. The Crazy Men’s Draw

The draw did not favor Federer. There is a possibility he will meet Nadal in the quarterfinals. But that is not his only worry. Murray and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga are also on his side of the bracket. He beat Murray in last year’s Wimbledon, but Tsonga beat him in the quarterfinals of the French Open. It will be a huge challenge for Federer to get to the Final. The draw heavily favored Djokovic–with only Ferrer on his side. Djokovic should fly into the Final without much trouble.

9. The Weather

England has unpredictable summer weather, and it always adds drama to the tournament. This year the first week is predicted to be dry, but this is England. It reminds me of Houston in the summer where everyday it rained somewhere in the city, but it did not last long. There is a retractable roof over Centre Court and more than likely it will be in use. It leads to controversy, though, because it changes the atmosphere inside and could affect the way players play.

10. ME!!

Yes, it’s true. I am going to London with my beloved husband June 27-July 4 and will be attending at least one day at Wimbledon. I plan on giving Breitbart Sports live coverage with plenty of pictures from the tournament and the famous tennis museum. 

Follow Mary Chastain on Twitter.