Wimbledon 2016 Men’s Finals Preview: Andy Murray vs Milos Raonic

published: Jul, 10, 2016

by: Caroline Arabel-Vaughn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a tale of two contrasting men’s semi finals. A battle for the seven-time champion Roger Federer and a walk in the park for previous champion, Andy Murray. Federer was on track to take the fourth set, and win the match, before hitting an uncharacteristic two double faults and squandering his opportunity for a place in the finals. Meanwhile Tomas Berdych was no match for Murray and was seen off in straight sets. He will face Milos Raonic in Sunday’s Wimbledon final.

Andy Murray [2] vs Milos Raonic [6]

Before lifting the grand slam trophy, one generally must defeat a member of the elite big four.. two if you’re unlucky. Should Andy Murray win this year’s Wimbledon, it will be a victory without having to deal with the likes of Novak, Roger, Rafa or even Stan, the man who’s been challenging the big four stronghold.

The greatest struggle Murray encountered en route to the final was that of twelfth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, whom he finally overcame in five sets. SIxth Milos Raonic, will be the highest seed he’s played this tournament.

In what seems like a repeat of the recent Aegon final, the two seeds will resume their grass court rivalry. Murray defeated Raonic at Queens, but was pushed to three sets. Have the weeks of extra grass court play given Milos more confidence and a chance to build on his improved serve and volley tactics? Will the five sets swing the advantage in someone’s favour? And who will prevail through their nerves?

Murray is expected to be the winner, but the relentless Canadian has a game that cannot be taken for granted. Raonic seems to have a new found love for the net, and he defends it effectively. He will serve and volley, as well as run around his forehand in attempt to move Andy around as much as possible.

But these tactics will not be enough for a scamperer like Murray, who will be at his defensive best. The Scot will use his returning skills to neutralise the Raonic serve, chipping away at the Canadian’s greatest weapon. He will tactically keep the ball low, forcing the big Canadian to go uncomfortably low. The rallies will be interesting as Raonic has the ability to blast great forehand winners from anywhere on the court, while Murray will rely on his solid backhand to do most of the talking.

Milos is already the first Canadian to reach a grand slam final, and it’s increasingly likely that he will be the first Canadian to win one. A victory for Milos over Andy Murray will not only be a triumph for Canada, but perhaps would also be a triumph over the big four. This, followed by sustained results, could signal the weathering of the old guards, and inspire the younger generation to break through and start winning slams.

However this may not be Milos’s day, as Britain’s determined Andy Murray is on rare form and will be keen to take full advantage of the fact that for the first time, his opponent in the finals is neither Novak or Roger. With his zealous home crowd behind him, we predict Andy will take this in four sets.

Caroline Arabel-Vaughn

Tennis Enthusiast. Communications Specialist.

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