This section of the draw can be titled Rafa and the Aussies, as Rafael Nadal has made his way into the second week of Wimbledon along with three Australian men who all feature in round of 16 matches. Here are your predictions for every match.
Cristian Garin vs Alex de Minaur
Jakub Bobro: Garin has now made back-to-back fourth rounds at Wimbledon despite struggles coming in. The Chilean got lucky with Matteo Berrettini’s withdrawal but really showed up in his last win over Jenson Brooksby. de Minaur has been solid throughout the tournament, beating Brits Jack Draper and Liam Broady in his last two matches. It has been a great run for Garin but I believe it will end here as the Australian has won in all three of their previous meetings, including in Eastbourne last week. de Minaur in 4
Damian: Back-to-back round four appearances at Wimbledon is a pretty impressive feat by Cristian Garin, even if the draws were very kind. The Chilean hits a pretty flat ball for a clay specliast and is quite good on serve/return. However, Alex de Minaur is a far more natural grass-courter and he’s been in dominant form so far. He should advance fairly comfortably and drop a set at best. de Minaur in 3
Brandon Nakashima vs Nick Kyrgios
Jakub: Kyrgios played one of the best matches of the tournament against Stefanos Tsitsipas but will have a different challenge in Nakashima. The young American is a strong returner, as he showed against Denis Shapovalov, and will make Kyrgios rally at the very least. This match will take a lot of focus for the Australian to win, which I expect to ebb and flow throughout but I do think Kyrgios will win out in the end. Kyrgios in 5
Damian: This is a test for Nick Kyrgios – can he maintain the motivation and play as well as he did to beat Stefanos Tsitsipas against someone he should theoretically beat? If he enters the court thinking it’s going to be easy, he’s not going to win this one. Brandon Nakashima is having a great grass campaign and it will take maximum effort from Kyrgios to progress somewhat smoothly. Let’s say he delivers.
Kyrgios in 4
Jason Kubler vs Taylor Fritz
Jakub: Fritz, yet to drop a set, is now on a seven-match win streak with the most recent win against Alex Molcan. Kubler has won the last six, beginning his Wimbledon in qualifying. The Australian outlasted former Top 10 player and fellow qualifier Jack Sock in five sets. Kubler is a solid player but I expect the last match to catch up to him as Fritz’s short time spent on court will make him a tough out as we head into the business end of the tournament. Fritz in 3
Damian: It’s been a phenomenal season for Jason Kubler and he will probably be Taylor Fritz’s toughest opponent yet. However, it seems like the American has really joined the elite this year and has been flying sky-high in Eastbourne and at Wimbledon thus far. Kubler could give him a challenge, but it will take a bad day at the office for Fritz to get eliminated here. Fritz in 4
Rafael Nadal vs Botic van de Zandschulp
Jakub: After a bit of roof and grunting drama, Nadal got his first straight-set win at Wimbledon this year, taking out Lorenzo Sonego. Van De Zandschulp has eliminated yet another tricky opponent in Richard Gasquet in his last match. I don’t expect Nadal to be as dominant in this match as he was in their previous meeting at Roland Garros but the Spaniard is a legitimate title contender here and should win. Nadal in 4
Damian: Botic van de Zandschulp has a very well-balanced game, being dangerous both defending and attacking. The serve is also a big threat on this surface. He might lack something extra to beat Rafael Nadal though, especially if the Spaniard is playing like he did against Lorenzo Sonego, not against Francisco Cerundolo and Ricardas Berankis. Nadal in 4