Wimbledon announces mouthwatering men’s draw
Originally published on: 22/06/12 00:00
The world No.3, who won five straight titles at the All England Club between 2003 and 2007 before picking up his sixth title in 2009, will meet world No.43 Albert Ramos for the first time at this year's event. The Spaniard has never been beyond the second round of a Grand Slam and will make his main draw debut at Wimbledon this year.
Meanwhile, current world No.1 Novak Djokovic takes on former world No.1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, while Rafael Nadal faces former world No.21 Thomaz Bellucci and Andy Murray takes on Nikolay Davydenko.
Djokovic was beaten by Ferrero all the way back in 2005, in Umag, but made amends by winning their only other meeting in three sets – in Madrid in 2007.
Nadal holds a 100% record against Bellucci in their two previous meetings, beating the 24-year-old in straight sets on the clay of Roland Garros – in 2008 and 2010 – but the Brazilian is capable of big wins and has beaten both Thomas Berdych and Murray, albeit on clay, in the past.
The Scot faces a tough match against world No.47 Davydenko. Though he has shaded their career head-to-head, winning five of their nine career bouts, Murray fell to the Russian in four sets in their only Grand Slam meeting – at the 2006 US Open. In Murray’s favour, Davydenko has never been beyond the fourth round at the All England Club and fell to Bernard Tomic in the opening round last year.
In the pick of the other matches, wildcard and 2002 champion Lleyton Hewitt will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, having fallen in both of their previous two matches including defeat on the lawns of The Queen’s Club in 2007. Tomas Berdych takes on Ernests Gulbis, while Juan Martin del Potro takes on Robin Haase and Queen’s bad boy David Nalbandian faces Janko Tipsarevic.
John Isner who contested an epic three-day match with Nicolas Mahut in 2010, only just managed to avoid facing the Frenchman for the third year in a row after he was drawn with Colombian Alejandro Falla immediately before the Frencman was drawn to face Paolo Lorenzi.
Other enticing matches include Paul-Henri Mathieu against compatriot Gilles Simon, Halle champion Tommy Haas against fellow German Philipp Kohlschreiber and, in one of the more tongue-twisting prospects for the eventual match umpire, Alexandr Dolgopolov against Alex Bogomolov Jr.