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Roger Federer And Novak Djokovic In Same Half of Wimbledon 2017 Men’s Singles Draw

EPA/PETER KLAUNZER

Wimbledon’s 2017 draw ceremony was held on Friday in London, where the men’s singles bracket did no favors for Roger Federer. The 35-year-old Swiss, who won the season’s first Grand Slam (Australian Open) before skipping the French Open, is in a section of the draw that also features Milos Raonic, Alexander Zverev, Mischa Zverev, Grigor Dimitrov, and John Isner. Federer is set to begin his campaign against Alexandr Dolgopolov and the 18-time major champion may run into Novak Djokovic in the semifinals.

Despite being less than 100 percent throughout the 2016 Wimbledon festivities, Federer advanced to the final four by erasing a two-set two deficit en route to a thrilling win over Marin Cilic in the quarterfinals. Raonic then ended Federer’s in another five-setter.

Djokovic is on a collision course for the last 32 with friend and familiar foe Juan Martin Del Potro. Already this year the two veterans have twice faced each other earlier than either one would have hoped, with the Serb prevailing in both Acapuclo (second round) and Indian Wells (third round). The bottom section of this Wimbledon draw is also home to Dominic Thiem, Queen’s Club champion Feliciano Lopez, and Frenchmen Gael Monfils and Richard Gasquet.

At the very top, Andy Murray is a bit of a question mark heading into another bid for a third title at the All-England Club. The top-seeded Scot showed signs of emerging from an early-season slump by reaching the last four at Roland Garros, but he fell right away at Queen’s Club and is now dealing with a hip issue. Wawrinka, who beat Murray on the red clay of Paris before losing to Rafael Nadal in the final, is in Murray’s quarter at Wimbledon.

The top half of the bracket also includes Nadal, a two-time Wimbledon champion (2008, 2010). On each of those two occasions, the Spaniard preceded his grass-court success by winning the French Open. Since finishing runner-up to Djokovic six years ago, however, Nadal is a mere 5-4 overall on the grass courts of the AELTC with no trips past the fourth round.

Nadal, who awaits John Millman in round one, could face his first significant test in the form a fourth-round showdown against one of two grass-court gurus–and recent ‘s-Hertogenbosch finalists–in Ivo Karlovic and Gilles Muller.

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.