Wimbledon 2013 Draw: Complete Bracket Analysis and Review
The seeds are set. The draw is out. It's officially time for Wimbledon.
The biggest news on the men's side is that Rafael Nadal's seed was not adjusted at all, so he remains the No. 5 seed and could face Roger Federer in the quarterfinals. Can you say blockbuster? The winner of that match would get Andy Murray in the semifinals provided no upsets occur.
On the women's side, things went generally to form. Serena Williams is in a half with Agnieszka Radwanska, her opponent in last year's final. Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova are set for another semifinal clash. It sounds a lot like the French Open.
As you prepare your all-whites and go shopping for your strawberries and cream, take a look at the full draw breakdown ahead.
Men's Favorites with an Easy Draw
Novak Djokovic (No. 1)
The world No. 1 opens up with last year's quarterfinalist Florian Mayer, but don't let that fool you. With Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray in the other half, Djokovic pretty much won the draw lottery.
He's projected to play Tommy Haas (No. 13) in the fourth round and Tomas Berdych (No. 7) in the quartefinals. These are not automatic wins by any means, but it could be a lot worse.
David Ferrer (No. 4)
The most controversial No. 4 seed of our time got a pretty lucky break with the draw. He has a lot of clay-court specialists in his path and then Juan Martin del Potro (No. 8) in the quarterfinals.
Grass is not Ferrer's best surface, but he has a reasonable chance to make his first Wimbledon semifinal.
Men's Favorites with a Tough Draw
Roger Federer (No. 3)
Federer has no notable competition until he faces Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals, but that alone gives the defending champion a rocky road to Wimbledon title No. 8.
Andy Murray (No. 2)
The hometown hero has a pretty straightforward first few rounds, but then he has Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarterfinals and Federer or Nadal in the semifinals. Getting back to the final is not going to be easy.
Rafael Nadal (No. 5)
Things are pretty much smooth sailing for the first three rounds for Nadal, but then he hits a lot of turbulence. He could face Stanislas Wawrinka (No. 11) in the fourth round, Roger Federer (No. 3) in the quarterfinals and Andy Murray (No. 2) in the semifinals. Ouch.
Welcome back to Wimbledon, Rafa!
Women's Favorites with an Easy Draw
Maria Sharapova (No. 3)
Sharapova should be feeling lucky. Despite falling to the No. 3 spot, she still can't face Serena until the final. That's the best possible scenario for her.
In fact she has a straight shot to the semifinals, where she could face Victoria Azarenka (No. 2). The highest seeds in her section are Marion Bartoli (No. 15), Caroline Wozniacki (No. 9) and Sara Errani (No. 5).
Agnieszka Radwanska (No. 4)
Last year's surprise finalist has a fairly easy shot to the semifinals. The only seeds standing in the way of a quarterfinal appearance are Mona Barthel (No. 30), Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (No. 21) and Nadia Petrova (No. 13).
Li Na (No. 6), who has never had success on grass, is her projected opponent in the quarterfinals. If she makes it to the semifinals, she could meet Serena Williams, which is of course where the easy draw could end.
Women's Favorites with a Tough Draw
Serena Williams (No. 1)
Serena has to navigate through a really tricky first week. In the second round, she could face former semifinalist Jie Zheng, who pushed her to 9-7 in the third set at Wimbledon last year. In the third round, she could get two-time Wimbledon quarterfinalist Tamira Paszek.
Then, in the fourth round, she'll likely get either Sabine Lisicki (No. 23) or Samantha Stosur (No. 14). Lisicki has taken out the the defending French Open champion at Wimbledon three of the past four years.
If Serena makes it through the first week she has an easy road the final. She is slated to play struggling German Angelique Kerber (No. 7) in the quarterfinals and Agnieszka Radwanska (No. 4) in the semis.
Victoria Azarenka (No. 2)
Azarenka really got the short end of the stick this draw. Despite getting the No. 2 seed back from Sharapova, and therefore not having to see Serena until the final, she still has to face 2011 champion Petra Kvitova (No. 8) in the quarterfinals and Maria Sharapova (No. 3) in the semifinals.
Outlook for the American Men
Once again, it's going to take a big upset to see an American man in the second week of Wimbledon.
John Isner (No. 18) has the best shot, but nothing is ever easy for Isner at the All England Club. He gets Evgeny Donskoy (who just beat him at the Topshelf Open this week) in the first round, clay lovers Pablo Andujar or Adrian Mannarino in the second round and then Stanislas Wawrinka (No. 11) in the third round.
Wawrinka is beatable on grass, but not an easy out. If Isner does make it to the fourth round, he would likely face Nadal.
Sam Querrey (No. 21) also could make it to the fourth round, though his path is a bit tougher. He has an insanely difficult first-round match against 2011 quarterfinalist Bernard Tomic. Then he could face James Blake in the second round and Richard Gasquet (No. 9) in the third round. Opportunities, but not automatics.
Tomas Berdych (No. 7) would be Querrey's fourth-round opponent.
Ryan Harrison, meanwhile, opens up against Jeremy Chardy (No. 28), which should be a winnable match on grass. He would have another winnable match in the second round before facing Novak Djokovic in the third. A couple of wins at a major would be big for him right now.
Outlook for the American Women
Things look brighter for the American women, who are looking to equal or surpass their good French Open showing, where they had four representatives in the fourth round.
We've already discussed the prospects of Serena Williams, who is the favorite.
Sloane Stephens (No. 17) drew fellow American and Eastbourne finalist Jamie Hampton in the first round. This is a really tough draw for Stephens, since Hampton has performed well on grass and was very close to being seeded.
The winner of that match is in a mediocre section, though, with Caroline Wozniacki (No. 9) and Sara Errani (No. 5) as the highest seeds looming.
Varvara Lepchenko (No. 26) is also in that section of the draw, and I think she has the best shot at making the quarterfinals. Wozniacki could be her fourth-round opponent.
Bethanie Mattek-Sands, who upset Li Na at the French Open, gets Angelique Kerber (No. 7) in the first round and has a chance to get a big upset right away and take Kerber's No. 7-seed draw for the rest of the tournament. It's not an easy task, but it's a great opportunity.
There are a lot of other American women in the draw, but particularly keep an eye out for Mallory Burdette, who gets Urszula Radwanska in the first round and could face fellow American Alison Riske in the second. Her game is well-suited for grass, and she should be able to get to the third round.
Also, Madison Keys gets a blockbuster first-round match against Brit Heather Watson, which will surely garner a lot of attention.
Must-See Early-Round Matches
Best Women's First-Round Matches
Laura Robson vs. Maria Kirilenko (10)
Sabine Lisicki (23) vs. Francesca Schiavone
Bethanie Mattek-Sands vs. Angelique Kerber (7)
Madison Keys vs. Heather Watson
Sloane Stephens (17) vs. Jamie Hampton
Best Men's First-Round Matches
Gilles Simon (19) vs. Feliciano Lopez
Sam Querrey (21) vs. Bernard Tomic
Lleyton Hewitt vs. Stanislas Wawrinka (11)
Fernando Verdasco vs. Xavier Malisse
Janko Tipsarevic (14) vs. Victor Troicki
Wild Cards to Watch
Here are a few players who aren't out-right favorites, but could be a factor:
Petra Kvitova (No. 8)
The 2011 champion has struggled this year, but she's always dangerous at Wimbledon. She has a fairly straightforward first week (if there is such a thing for Kvitova) and could set up a marquee match if she makes it to Azarenka in the quarterfinals. Kvitova would definitely have a chance to win that match.
Tomas Berdych (No. 7)
Berdych will be looking to exorcise his first-round demons from the French Open, and he has a great chance to do so. After a very welcome non-noteworthy first week, he is scheduled to face Richard Gasquet (No. 9) in the fourth round and Novak Djokovic (No. 1) in the quarterfinals. He's beaten Djokovic at Wimbledon before.
Varvara Lepchenko (No. 26)
The unheralded American has a huge opportunity with this draw. She faces much lower-ranked players until the third round, where she will play Sara Errani (No. 5). Errani has struggled on grass throughout her career and is not a factor at Wimbledon.
Then, in the fourth round, Lepchenko could face Caroline Wozniacki (No. 9), who is also very vulnerable on grass.
The 2002 champion has a nice look at a fourth-round run if he's feeling good. He faces Stanislas Wawrinka (No. 11) in the first round, and if he gets the upset he inherits a good draw until Nadal in the fourth round. It would be great to see him in the second week of Wimbledon again.
Predictions for the Men's Tournament
Novak Djokovic (No. 1) vs. Tomas Berdych (No. 7)
Philipp Kohlschreiber (No. 16) vs. Juan Martin del Potro (No. 8)
Rafael Nadal (No. 5) vs. Roger Federer (No. 3)
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (No. 6) vs. Andy Murray (No. 2)
Novak Djokovic vs. Juan Martin del Potro
Rafael Nadal vs. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
Novak Djokovic vs. Rafael Nadal
Predictions for the Women's Tournament
Serena Williams (No. 1) vs. Angelique Kerber (No. 7)
Agnieszka Radwanska (No. 4) vs. Daniela Hantuchova
Varvara Lepchenko (No. 26) vs. Maria Sharapova (No. 3)
Petra Kvitova (No. 8) vs. Victoria Azarenka (No. 2)
Serena Williams vs. Agnieszka Radwanska
Maria Sharapova vs. Victoria Azarenka
Serena Williams vs. Victoria Azarenka