Wimbledon Men’s SF Open Thread: Federer v. Djokovic, Murray v. Tsonga
The Wimbledon men’s semifinal are on tap Friday from Wimbledon. The big names returning are defending champion Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and British hope Andy Murray.
The weather is forecasted for rain but with the new Center Court roof play will get underway, rain or shine, at 1pm local time in London.
Federer is bidding to become the first man in history to reach 8 Wimbledon finals.
Murray is bidding to avoid becoming just the 2nd man in the Open Era to lose his first 4 Wimbledon semifinals. Tim Henman is the only man to have lost his first 4 semifinals here in 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2002.
Djokovic is looking to become just the 3rd man in the Open Era to reach 5 consecutive Grand Slam finals – only Federer and Rafael Nadal have reached 5 or more consecutive Grand Slam finals.
Tsonga is aiming to become the 2nd Frenchman in the Open Era to reach multiple Grand Slam finals, after Cedric Pioline, who reached the final at the 1993 US Open and 1997 Wimbledon.
There is guaranteed to be a first-time Wimbledon finalist on Sunday as neither Andy Murray or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has ever made the last 2 here.
Three of the semifinalists are already grass court titleists – Tsonga is the only one not to have won a title on grass before. Federer has won more grass court titles than the other 3 players combined.
All of the semifinalists have dropped at least one set en route to the last 4: Djokovic has dropped the fewest games (47); Murray and Tsonga have dropped the most (76 games each).
Djokovic has spent the least time on court (9 hours 42 minutes); Murray has spent the longest time on court (14:02).
NO. 1 NOVAK DJOKOVIC (SRB) v NO. 3 ROGER FEDERER (SUI)
Head-to-head: Federer leads 14-12
A first grass court meeting for the 2 players, who have now completed a set of Grand Slam encounters. The only other players Federer has met at all 4 majors are Juan Martin del Potro, Nicolas Kiefer and David Nalbandian. The only player Djokovic has also met at all 4 majors is Rafael Nadal.
If Djokovic wins today he is guaranteed to remain No. 1 when the ATP Rankings are released on Monday 9th July. If Federer wins today and goes on to claim his 7th Wimbledon title he will regain the top spot.
This is Djokovic and Federer’s 11th Grand Slam encounter, putting them in 1st place for the most matches played at majors.
Top seed and defending champion DJOKOVIC is bidding to become the first man to retain the Wimbledon title since today’s opponent in 2007.
Djokovic is bidding to reach his 5th consecutive Grand Slam final. Today’s opponent holds the record for the most consecutive Grand Slam final appearances having reached 10 back-to-back finals from 2005 Wimbledon through the 2007 US Open.
Djokovic is bidding to reach his second final here and his 9th Grand Slam final overall. His record in his 15 previous Grand Slam semifinals is as follows.
Djokovic has reached his 9th consecutive Grand Slam semifinal which puts him in 4th place for the most consecutive Grand Slam semifinal appearances. The last time he failed to reach the semifinals at a Grand Slam was when he lost to Tomas Berdych as No. 3 seed in the quarterfinals at 2010 Roland Garros.
6-time Wimbledon champion FEDERER is bidding to set a new record by reaching his 8th Wimbledon final. He is currently in joint-1st place with Boris Becker, Arthur Gore and Pete Sampras for most Wimbledon final appearances.
Federer is also looking to reach his 24th Grand Slam final, and extend the all-time record that he took sole ownership of at 2009 Wimbledon. Federer has a 23-8 win-loss record in Grand Slam semifinals.
Federer is bidding to equal William Renshaw and Pete Sampras’s record of 7 Wimbledon titles by winning his 17th Grand Slam title overall. Federer’s 6 victories in the final here were over Mark Philippoussis (2003), Andy Roddick (2004-05, 2009) and Rafael Nadal (2006-07).
By reaching his 32nd Grand Slam semifinal Federer has overtaken Jimmy Connors and now holds the record for the most Grand Slam semifinal appearances
NO. 4 ANDY MURRAY (GBR) v NO. 5 JO-WILFRIED TSONGA (FRA)
Head-to-head: Murray leads 5-1
Murray is on a 4-match winning streak against Tsonga and has won both their previous Tour-level matches on grass, most recently in the 2011 Queen’s final on his way to his 17th singles title. Tsonga won their first ever meeting, which came on grass at the Nottingham Challenger in 2004.
For the 4th consecutive year, MURRAY is attempting to become the first British man to reach the Wimbledon final since Henry “Bunny” Austin in 1938 and in the process end a run of 11 losses for British men in the Wimbledon semifinals since Austin’s victory.
Since the Challenge Round* was abolished in 1922, only two British men, Austin and Fred Perry, have reached the Wimbledon final. Perry won all 3 of his finals in 1934, 1935 and 1936 to be crowned Wimbledon champion.
Murray is now attempting to reach his 4th Grand Slam final and is the only British man in the Open Era to reach multiple Grand Slam finals. He has failed to win a set in any of his 3 previous finals: the 2008 US Open (l. Roger Federer 62 75 62), the 2010 Australian Open (l. Federer 63 64 76) and the 2011 Australian Open (l. Novak Djokovic 64 62 63).
Murray is one of only 4 men in the Open Era to have lost in their first 3 (or more) Grand Slam finals. Ivan Lendl lost in 4 Grand Slam finals at 1981 Roland Garros, the 1982 and 1983 US Opens, and the 1983 Australian Open before winning his first Grand Slam title at 1984 Roland Garros. Agassi lost in the 1990 and 1991 Roland Garros finals, and the 1990 US Open final before winning his first title at 1992 Wimbledon. Ivanisevic lost in the 1992, 1994 and 1998 Wimbledon finals before he was crowned 2001 Wimbledon champion.
TSONGA is bidding to become just the 2nd Frenchman to reach the Wimbledon final in the Open Era after Cedric Pioline in 1997. A Frenchman has never won the title here in the Open Era. The last Frenchman to win the title here was Yvon Petra in 1946.
If Tsonga reaches the final today he will become just the 2nd Frenchman to reach multiple Grand Slam finals in the Open Era after Cedric Pioline. Pioline finished as runner-up at the 1993 US Open and at 1997 Wimbledon.
If Tsonga wins today he will overtake David Ferrer and equal his career-high ranking at No. 5 in the ATP Rankings when they are released on Monday 9 July.
By reaching his 4th Grand Slam semifinal Tsonga has equalled the Open Era record for most Grand Slam semifinal appearances by a Frenchman. 3 Frenchman have reached 4 Grand Slam semifinals in the Open Era – Sebastien Grosjean, Henri Leconte and Cedric Pioline.
(Data from the ITF)
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