Can Serena Williams retain her Wimbledon title and win a first Grand Slam title in 2016? Is French Open champion and last year’s Wimbledon runner-up Garbine Muguruza ready to take it a step further?
Is Venus Williams done, or can she take advantage of a fairly good draw? Are grass upstarts Madison Keys, CoCo Vandeweghe and Caroline Garcia confident enough to go deep?
These questions and more will be answered over the next fortnight at the All England Club.
Here’s a look at the women’s draw:
Top 4 Seeds: (1) Serena Williams, (6) Roberta Vinci, (11) Timea Bacsinszky, (13) Svetlana Kuznetsova
Floaters: (18) Sloane Stephens, (27) CoCo Vandeweghe, (31) Kristina Mladenovic, Caroline Wozniacki, Alison Riske
Notes: Tough section for Serena with a lot of seeds who can step it up on grass, in addition to former No. 1s and Slam winners…Difficult openers for (13) Kuznetsova vs. Wozniacki, and (6) Vinci vs. Riske…Serena’s path to the semis would likely have to go through a qualifier, Chrisina McHale, (31) Mladenovic, then (13) Kuzy or (18) Stephens, then (11) Bacsinszky or (27) Vandeweghe…You never know what mindsets they’re showing up with, but Americans Stephens and Vandeweghe could go deep. Has Serena put the yips behind her?
Top 4 Seeds: (3) Aggie Radwasnka, (7) Belinda Bencic, (10) Petra Kvitova, (16) Johanna Konta
Floaters: (30) Caroline Garcia, Ekaterina Makarova, Tsvetana Pironkova
Notes: Not a lot of floating talent, but (7) Bencic could be up against it in her opener against the fast-court upset specialist Pironkova. If the Swiss survives she will meet a battle-tested qualifier in the 2nd round..In the third round (3) Radwanska could meet (30) Garcia who won a Wimbledon warm-up tournament…The draw for the former Wimbledon champ (10) Kvitova could open up if the Czech keeps winning and is healthy…Radwanska can be easily overpowered on grass, Bencic is trying to come back from injury, and Kvitova seems always injured or sick — this section is a toss-up.
Top 4 Seeds: (4) Angie Kerber, (5) Simona Halep, (9) Madison Keys, (15) Karolina Pliskova
Floaters: (23) Ana Ivanovic, (25) Irina-Camelia Begu, Jelena Ostapenko
Notes: Another quarter where the seeds have pretty straight-forward paths…Possible road bump for (26) Kiki Bertens vs. Ostapenko…(4) Kerber will have a high-profile start against Brit wildcard Laura Robson…(9) Keys starts against German Laura Siegemund who has shot to tour-level prominence this year…Watch for fourth round (5) Halep vs. (9) Keys.
Top 4 Seeds: (2) Garbine Muguruza, (8) Venus Williams, (12) Carla Suarez Navarro, (14) Sam Stosur
Floaters: (22) Jelena Jankovic, (29) Daria Kasatkina, Donna Vekic, Sabine Lisicki, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Camila Giorgi
Notes: The former Wimbledon runner-up Muguruza is the favorite, but this will be a tough quarter to emerge from…Difficult starts go to the fading (8) Venus Williams vs. the Croat riser Vekic, (28) Safarova vs. Mattek-Sands, (2) Muguruza vs. the feisty Giorgi, and second round (14) Stosur vs. the Lisicki/Shelby Rogers winner…Muguruza’s road out of this quarter would likely go through Giorgi, a qualifier, Mattek-Sands, (14) Stosur and (8) Venus Williams. Don’t count anyone out, and a (2) Muguruza vs. (8) Venus quarterfinal would be mouthwatering.
Anyone for a Serena Williams vs. Garbine Muguruza final again? What is your pick?
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