Roger Federer’s shock second round exit to Sergiy Stakhovsky had fans of the Swiss in tears at the All England Club. His exit, however, will surely have one man smiling.
Andy Murray’s route to the final now looks all but a formality given the notable scalps on his side of the draw.
Federer’s 3-1 loss to the world number 116 followed the exit of Jo-Wilfried Tsonga earlier in the day. The Frenchman was in seemingly good form when racing to a 6-3 lead in the first set, but lost the next two before retiring with a knee problem.
Those exits, added to the shock first round defeat of Rafael Nadal, means that the British number one has an easier route to the final than he could have ever imagined.
Murray, who is 11/8 to win outright, progressed to the third round with ease, defeating 2010 quarter-finalist Yen-Hsun Lu in straight sets and now faces Tommy Robredo.
Robredo has a good record against Murray having won three of their five encounters. However, the last time they met was in 2010 and they have never played on grass. The US Open champion, who is 1/50 to win the match, should have far too much for the Spaniard this time.
And, if the Scot avoids becoming the next shock exit at Wimbledon, there is very little to stop him reaching the final. Fifteenth seed Nicolas Almagro is the highest ranked player that survives on Murray’s side of the draw.
Almagro, who is 150/1 for Wimbledon victory, has lost his last three matches against Murray, the last of which was in straight sets at the Olympics last year.
Mikhail Youzhny, Juan Monaco and Jerzy Janowicz are others who could potentially provide the stiffest competition en route to the final, but none are on the same level as the Scot.
It looks likely then that the only man who can stand in Murray’s way is world number one Novak Djokovic in the final. Djokovic, who is 10/11 to claim his second Wimbledon crown, will still potentially have to play Juan Martin Del Potro, Tomas Berdych or David Ferrer before facing off with the Scot.
Given that all of those players are capable of taking Djokovic to four or five sets, the Serb might not be as fresh as Murray come July 7th and with the head-to-head standings at one apiece on grass, the value could be with the Scot.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.