Yo dawg, I heard you like upsets…

Naomi Osaka: gone. Sascha Zverev: finito. Stefanos Tsitsipas: toast. Aryna Sabalenka: donezo. Venus Williams: sent packing by a child. Suffice to say, opening days of major tournaments don’t get much crazier than Monday at Wimbledon.

Indeed, if day one is any indication, we could be in for quite the wild fortnight. Could Jiri Vesely finally start living up to his potential? Could Yulia Putintseva become a crowd favourite? Could Coco Gauff make a second-week run, only to pull out with too much homework? I don’t think we can rule any of it out…

In any case, it’s just nice to have grand slam tennis back in our lives. Here’s your three to see on Tuesday at SW19:

Ashleigh Barty (AUS) [1] v Saisai Zheng (CHN) – First on No. 1 Court

It’s one thing to get to world number one, it’s another to stay there, and now it’s Ash Barty’s turn to feel the target on her back. Forced to pull out of Eastbourne with a flare-up of an old arm injury, she could be entering Wimbledon at less than 100%, and that’s not ideal both with the added pressure of her ranking, and an opponent across the net who has pushed her to three sets in both of their career meetings. With that in mind, this is an interesting test for the Aussie first-up, as well as an opportunity to send a message to the other big-name players in her ridiculously stacked quarter.

Dominic Thiem (AUT) [5] v Sam Querrey (USA) – Second on No. 2 Court

Only making it past the second round once in five appearances, it’s safe to say Dominic Thiem doesn’t like Wimbledon that much, and well… considering they’ve given him 2017 semifinalist Sam Querrey in round one, maybe Wimbledon doesn’t like him much either. Indeed, considering this will be his first match on grass this season, and his opponent comes in off a finals appearance in Eastbourne, Thiem should very much fear the upset from the big American. Whether it eventuates will depend on how much pressure Querrey can sustain by racing through his own service games, but even if he eventually falls short, Thiem should expect a long afternoon to come through it.

Tomas Berdych (CZE) v Taylor Fritz (USA) – Third on Court 16

It’s been a difficult twelve months for Tomas Berdych – barely playing since he first pulled out of Wimbledon last year with a back injury, the big Czech hasn’t been seen on the tour since March, and now in his first match back, he gets a very in-form Taylor Fritz. A titlist last week in Eastbourne, the 21-year-old Fritz could be a dangerous floater here at SW19, and with a big serve and solid all-around groundstrokes, it should be interesting to see how Berdych reacts to getting something of a taste of his own medicine. If the 33-year-old is fit, don’t be surprised if he makes a contest of this, but in any case, you’re guaranteed a few sets of true grass court power tennis.


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