wimbledon centre court
Jack White

Whether they are in the stands, enjoying the traditional strawberries and cream, or gathered around the TV rooting for the next rising underdog, the British public are looking forward to what should be an exciting 136th edition of the most prestigious tournament in the world. Jack White is on hand to provide the ‘need-to-know’ information for Wimbledon 2023. 

Despite the excitement, men’s tennis is desperately searching for a contender to compete with one of sport’s greatest, Novak Djokovic, who looks almost unstoppable, dropping only two sets in claiming his record 23rd Grand Slam title at Roland Garros last month. His ruthless domination has led some to argue whether the Serb has reached a new career prime at the age of 36.

Some have looked to Spanish wonderkid Carlos Alcaraz, who has recently regained the World Number 1 spot from the Djokovic after winning at Queens Championship; the ATP 500 tournament which is largely considered the ‘warm up’ event for the London Slam.

However, some question whether the young Spaniard lacks experience, pointing to past slams where he has become overwhelmed by the big occasion

For instance, falling short in the Semi Finals of the French Open after cramping, Alcaraz equated his discomfort to not having the ‘experience that Djokovic has in these types of matches’. After all, perhaps Djokovic’s greatest asset is his ability to deal with high pressure moments on the big stage, as the number 2 seed enters the tournament being unbeaten on Centre Court since 2013.

Talking of players who suit the Grass season, Nick Kyrgios perhaps represents the biggest threat to Novak Djokovic claiming his 24th Grand Slam title. Highly regarded as the best server on the ATP tour, Kyrgios’ serve is a fierce weapon. Not only is his serve hit with immense speed, but is also incredibly difficult to read. This makes him very difficult to break – in fact the hardest to break out of all players, winning a leading 92.8 per cent of his service games from 45 ATP Tour matches in the 2022 season.

The Aussie’s ability is often overshadowed by his fiery personality and accounts of bad sportsmanship, often leaving BBC broadcasters in a constant state of anxiety due to his unpredictable nature and foul mouth on the court

The ‘bad boy’ of tennis, as he is often named, seems to be always on the verge of his next fine for misconduct and is often heavily scrutinised for not respecting Wimbledon’s code of conduct and prestigious traditions. However, it is for these exact reasons that Kyrgios proves so popular among casual fans of the sport. For a sport which often tries to suppress emotions, Kyrgios provides an exciting prospect for the British public. Oftentimes sport watchers love to see emotion and anger, particularly when expressed in high pressure moments, as it is what makes sport so entertaining and exciting to watch.

You only have to compare the viewership ratings of previous Wimbledon finals to showcase Kyrgios’s influence and his value to the popularity of tennis. For instance, the 2022 Wimbledon tennis Grand Slam smashed the record for the highest streamed Wimbledon Final as 53.8 million tuned in to watch the Aussie battle the Serb. This represented a huge incline from the previous year’s figure of 30.5 million. Additionally, the number of hours watched by audiences on TV reached its highest since 2016, when Andy Murray lifted the trophy – a player who likewise to Kyrgios, is also known for his fiery and emotional behaviour on court.

Some may also look to some of the other high seeds. For instance, Daniil Medvedev, the 26-year-old Russian, known for his unorthodox style and exaggerated swinging technique goes into his first Wimbledon since 2021 after Russian and Belarusian players were barred from the tournament last year, following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Having had an impressive start to the Calendar Year, winning in both Rome and Miami (Masters 1000), Medvedev enters the tournament with a slight dip of form, losing in the opening round of the French Open

Furthermore, grass is deemed one of the Russian’s weakest surfaces – due to his defensive playstyle, opting for long rallies and spending most of his time in a defensive position far behind the baseline, grass doesn’t suit the Number 3 seed, with the surface favouring instead a more offensive, attacking style of play.

Other players include fourth seed, Casper Ruud, who openly admits that he feels more comfortable on the Golf Course than on a tennis grass court. While players to watch include Holger Rune and Stefanos Tsitsipas who represent the ‘new generation’ of players, plus Italian 21-year-old Jannik Sinner will also be looking to get revenge on Djokovic after falling short in a gruelling 5 set match last year. And of course, the British public will be fully behind former British Number 1, Andy Murray, who having just won two challenger events in Nottingham and Surbiton, will be hoping to go far in what could be his last dance at Wimbledon.

Jack White

Featured image courtesy of Carlo Bazzo via Unsplash. Image use license found here. No changes were made to this image.

In article image 1 courtesy of @wimbledon via Instagram. No changes were made to this image. 

In article image 2 courtesy of @wimbledon via Instagram. No changes were made to this image. 

For more content including uni news, reviews, entertainment, lifestyle, features and so much more, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like our Facebook page for more articles and information on how to get involved.

For further sports content and ways to get involved, follow @ImpactSport on Twitter and Instagram, and like the Impact Sport Facebook page!


Leave a Reply