Willis tackles Federer next: Wimbledon preview

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By Amanda Barlow

  • Roger Federer [3] v Marcus Willis [Q]
  • Dan Evans v Alexandr Dolgopolov [30]

WIMBLEDON, UK – The dream continues for Marcus Willis as he faces Roger Federer in the match of his life.

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Roger Federer [3] v Marcus Willis [Q] – First Meeting

The story of The Championships so far continues as though it could be straight out of Wimbledon, The Movie (perhaps less the schmaltz and inaccurate portrayal of a rain delay)!

Willis, who had been considering retirement, until persuaded out of it by his girlfriend, has won seven matches so far – pre-qualifying and qualifying before winning his opening round – you know you normally win a Slam at the end of seven straight matches at a tournament.

Of course Federer needs no introduction. He raised the bar on the men’s game as we know it, he has 17 Grand Slam titles tucked under his belt, and his hardest challenge at the moment is fending off howls of anguish regarding a retirement if he moves awkwardly.

But with tomorrow’s match comes an added pressure. Outside of research, he will not have had much chance to analyse Willis’ level of play. He agreed this is quite the fairytale, but the Brit will have nothing to lose.

Moreover, not all but a large proportion of the crowd will be in for a treat, seeing the Brit against a traditional crowd favourite. And come on – we Brits do love a good underdog.

On Monday evening it was clear that at the end Willis was running on adrenalin. Those matches will take their toll, and so long as he comes out with the same joie de vivre that he showed against Ricardas Berankis.

The bobbing along to the songs, dancing along with the support discombobulated the Lithuanian and there is a small danger that such antics will get under Federer’s skin, but the road will most likely end here.

Prediction: Federer in three sets.


Dan Evans v Alexandr Dolgopolov [30] – First Meeting

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There has never been any doubt about the underlying talent to Evans but the attitude at times has left a lot to be desired, but at his core he does possess the trickery to take the fight to the Ukrainian.

Dolgopolov has an unorthodox style, able to switch from defence to aggressive play very easily and his serve and take-back can easily disguise his intentions which cahn only serve to irritate.

Speedy around the court, good at the net – he probably has just a little too much variety. Not taking anything away from Evans who plays aggressively and also moves well, but lacks that attack that will be needed to make the difference against Dolgopolov

Prediction: Dolgopolov in four sets.

Play continues on the outside courts at 11:30am and on the show courts at 1pm BST.

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