Roger Federer has found himself on the wrong side of an epic on a couple of occasions at Wimbledon but none would compare to the hurt he felt following yesterday’s classic.
Federer had never lost a Grand Slam match when entering the third set having taken the first two sets, but Jo-Wilfried Tsonga ended that remarkable run of 178 games with one of the greatest comebacks ever seen at SW19.
What is so painful for Federer is that the defeat confirmed to many that his best days are behind him, and while we still wouldn’t write one of the greatest players to grace a tennis court off yet, the defeat, despite being in such a dominant position, will send shockwaves through the Federer camp.
Pre-tournament favouritism isn’t something handed out as a gesture of goodwill and there was a real sense that Federer could claim his seventh Wimbledon title, but the tide is turning and Federer is struggling to keep pace with his younger peers.
Rafael Nadal is now unbeaten in his last 18 appearances at Wimbledon and considering he has only lost to Roger Federer at Wimbledon since Gilles Muller knocked him out of the 2005 Championships, Nadal is in a great position to win a third title.
At 5/4 he heads the Wimbledon betting and will face Andy Murray in Friday’s semi-final, a match he is 4/9 to win.
Novak Djokovic has flown under the radar since losing his first match of the year at the French Open, but the Serb’s record is still an incredible one defeat in his last 54 matches and that includes four final victories over Nadal.
Djokovic is 11/5 to win Wimbledon but will have to negotiate his way past Tsonga in Friday’s other semi-final and the Serb also finds himself 4/9 to win his semi-final.
Writing both Murray and Tsonga off would be dangerous considering the form their in, but Nadal and Djokovic have been head and shoulders above the field over the past six months and the favourites can meet in the final.