Wimbledon Day 3 Men’s Predictions Including Novak Djokovic vs Denis Kudla

Novak Djokovic
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Novak Djokovic drew Denis Kudla for his second round match at Wimbledon, while Roberto Bautista Agut faces serve and volleyer Steve Darcis. Our panel of Yesh Ginsburg and Jim Smith offer their predictions. We also have predictions for matches featuring Stan Wawrinka, Feliciano Lopez, and Milos Raonic.

Novak Djokovic vs Denis Kudla

Jim: Kudla is an excellent grass-courter, almost a specialist on the surface. But that won’t be enough for him against Djokovic. The Serbian is an exceptionally clean ball-striker, an element of his game that is often underrated, and a very efficient server. That combined with his deadly return game makes him a supremely effective grass-court operator. Djokovic in 3

Yesh: Djokovic gets a much easier second round matchup than he had in the first. He seemed excited at the big moments against Philipp Kohlschreiber. Expect this match to be much smoother sailing. Djokovic in 3  

Leonardo Mayer vs Hubert Hurkacz

Jim: A battle of the big-hitters like this one is always worth watching on a grass court. Both men are most at home on slower surfaces, but their aggressive first-strike brand of tennis serves them well on the fast slick courts at the All England Club. But Hurkacz is marginally the better mover of the two and his groundstrokes are slightly more reliable. That should be the difference between the two. Hurkacz in 4

Yesh: The winner of this match has the unenviable task of taking on Djokovic next (probably). Who will earn that chance? Hurkacz has the bigger serve and is better suited to the grass. Hurkacz in 4 

Andreas Seppi vs Guido Pella

Jim: Pella may not be the most natural grass-courter, but he has delivered some impressive results on the surface, not least beating third seed Marin Cilic at Wimbledon last year in the second round. But he will need to be at his best up against the clean hitting of Andreas Seppi. The Italian veteran should have the experience, the quality and the composure required to account for Pella. Seppi in 4

Yesh: This is a potential upset. Seppi is aging, but he’s still pretty comfortable on grass. Pella can move well, but he likes the slower clay better. Expect a tight one in this. Pella in 5

Steve Darcis vs Roberto Bautista Agut

Jim: Darcis scored the win of his career at Wimbledon when he beat Rafael Nadal and owns two tour-level titles. But Bautista Agut is a very effective operator on the grass, thanks to his flat penetrating groundstrokes. His serve is a weakness that can be exposed by the very best, but Darcis is far from an elite returner. This one should be reasonably comfortable for the Spaniard. Bautista Agut in 4

Yesh: Steve Darcis loves the grass. Once, way back when, he even beat Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon. Bautista Agut, meanwhile, is still just gaining his grass legs. Don’t be surprised if a seed falls here. Darcis in 4

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