“New Yorkers love it when you spill your guts out there. You spill your guts out at Wimbledon, and they make you stop and clean it up.” – Jimmy Connors.
It’s gut-check time for Roger Federer and the rest of Wimbledon’s “Gentlemen” as they battle it out in the quarterfinals on Wednesday. Who’s bringing their mop and bucket to the court? Here’s the schedule:
WIMBLEDON: MEN’S QUARTERFINALS SCHEDULE
times BST (seedings in brackets)
Centre Court – 1:00 p.m.
Ivo Karlovic (22) vs. Roger Federer (2)
Andy Murray (3) vs. Juan Carlos Ferrero
No. 1 Court – 1:00 p.m.
Tommy Haas (24) vs. Novak Djokovic (4)
Lleyton Hewitt vs. Andy Roddick (6)
Karlovic vs. Federer: The head to head is 8-1, Federer, with Roger’s sole loss coming in Cincinnati in 2008. Roger’s beaten Ivo twice this year – in Indian Wells and Rome. They’ve met once on grass – at Wimbledon, 2004, with Roger winning in straights (two tiebreaks.) This is the Croatian’s first Major quarterfinals appearance. But before Fed Fans get too comfortable, consider the fact that the big serving Croat has not been broken this tournament (Roger’s been broken three times) and has served 137 aces (Roger’s served 59.)
Dr. Ivo also has a new mojo-rific, “spank that ace” victory dance. Horrifying:
Winner: I’m WAY too superstitious. The one time I picked Fed to win at GTT, he lost to Djokovic (Roger’s Cup, 2007). But if I see Dr. Ivo dancing like this on court tomorrow, I’ll need my own mop and bucket.
Murray vs. Ferrero. Head-to-head is 1-0, Murray, with their single meeting coming on grass a couple weeks ago in the Queen’s Club semis. Murray steamrolled the Spaniard 6-2, 6-4. Will Ferrero – an elderly (29 year-old) wildcard ranked 70 in the world – be Wimbledon’s answer to Robin Soderling? Or this year’s version of Goran Ivanisevic (the wildcard who broke British hearts by beating Tim Henman in the 2001 Wimbledon semis?) Um. . .only if Andy got a bad sunburn in training today:
Winner: AHN-day Murrr-AY! (I love saying it that way!)
Haas vs. Djokovic. Ooh! This is an attractive proposition! The head-to-head is 2-1 in Nole’s favor, but Haas just beat him in the finals of Halle, a grass court tune-up. Tommy is the oldest guy still left in the draw (31), played this year’s longest match at Wimbledon (4.5 hours against Cilic), and will probably catch the Swine Flu before the match (no joke – click here.). Then again, Novak could retire with ear cramps if the weather stays hot. So let’s just pop some popcorn, hope they’re both healthy and enjoy the drama! Winner: Djokovic
Lleyton Hewitt vs. Andy Roddick: Flashback to the early 2000s! This will be the 12th meeting of these former No. 1s, in a history that’s spanned from the 2001 Miami Masters to a couple weeks ago in the quarterfinals at Queen’s Club (which Andy won.) Hewitt holds the slight edge in their 6-5 head-to-head, but I defy even the most sadistic of Tennis Gods to squelch the much-anticipated Andy vs. Andy semifinal. Winner: AN-deee RAH-dick (nope, American just ain’t as fun as Scottish.)
How about you, seeing any bumps (or fevers, or obscene dancing) ahead?