Their rivalry is so old, they even have a 2004 result on carpet: It’s Djokovic vs Wawrinka, 2023 Wimbledon edition. Amazingly, Novak Djokovic and Stan Wawrinka have never met on grass! Now’s the time. It’s a perfect denouement for an epic, career-spanning encounter.
Djokovic vs Wawrinka H2H
Djokovic leads the career head-to-head with Wawrinka 20-6. You know it’s a legendary rivalry when 3 of their matches have ended in one player retiring. 8 others have gone the distance, including 5 full five-setters.
The Djokovic vs Wawrinka marathon, drama-filled matches in Grand Slams are the stuff of tennis history, including the 2015 Roland Garros final where Wawrinka surprisingly captured his first Slam.
Interestingly, the Djokovic vs Wawrinka Grand Slam head to head is 4-4, with Stan winning their last 3 meetings on those big stages.
Djokovic vs Wawrinka: Outlook
Much has changed since their last Grand Slam meeting in 2019 at the U.S. Open round of 16. Wawrinka missed over a year following foot surgery in 2021. At 38 years old, he has been slow to regain form, but he has been picking up momentum again in 2023.
Wawrinka is a fighter, a bulldog and a tank. He’s one of the few ATP Tour players with a one-handed backhand whose backhand is hard to break down. He’s a cagey all-court player, just like Djokovic. Stan can stick a backhand volley like a gladiator with a lead pipe.
One difference between these players is in fitness and overall conditioning. While Stan is “strong like bull,” he’s not as flexible. At this moment, Stan is simply a step slower than Novak.
Wawrinka’s batting about .500 on grass for his career, with a pair of Wimbledon quarterfinals, but this is the Slam he doesn’t have in his collection. Conversely, Djokovic has a dominating 86% winning percentage on grass.
Final verdict: While this will be a highly entertaining match with some nostalgic exchanges, grass isn’t Stan’s domain. The Djokovic scout team will know that a serve to the Wawrinka backhand is often bumped back as a neutralizing point-starter. That works fine on clay. On grass it will be an open invitation for Novak to pounce with a forehand to dominate the point from there.