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The Wimbledon third round will begin on Friday, when Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray resume their campaigns. Things could start to get tougher, because Nadal is going up against Karen Khachanov and Murray is facing Fabio Fognini. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Sam Querrey are also in action.

Ricky previews three of the best Day 5 matches and makes his predictions.

(4) Rafael Nadal vs. (30) Karen Khachanov
Nadal and Khachanov will be squaring off for the first time in their careers on Friday. A lot of “firsts” have been flooding in for Khachanov in recent times, and he is really starting to announce himself as a force to be reckoned with on the ATP World Tour. The 21-year-old is into the top 40 for the first time ever (accomplished in June, currently at a career-high 34th), reached the Roland Garros fourth round in his first main-draw appearance at that slam, and now finds himself in round three of his first main-draw showing at the All-England Club. Khachanov fought hard to beat Andrey Kuznetsov in five sets and Thiago Monteiro in four.

It’s safe to say the competition level ratchets up extensively in the form of Nadal, who is 45-6 this year with a quartet of titles–including his 10th French Open. The Spaniard did not play any grass-court warmup tournaments, but it’s also safe to say he knew what he was doing while making his schedule. Showing no grass-court rust whatsoever, Nadal thrashed John Millman 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 on Monday before dismissing Donald Young 6-4, 6-2, 7-5 in a more competitive second-rounder.
Pick: Nadal in 3

(1) Andy Murray vs. (28) Fabio Fognini
Murray and Fognini will be colliding for the seventh time in their careers and for the second time in less than two months. The head-to-head series is tied at three victories apiece following Fognini’s 6-2, 6-4 win at home in Italy (Rome Mastes). Two of Fognini’s successes have come on clay (also in 2014 Davis Cup), while one has come on a hard court (2007 Rogers Cup).

Based on the surface and setting, the tide can be expected to swing back in Murray’s favor. The world No. 1 is playing at home in London and has lifted three trophies on the grass courts of the AELTC (two at Wimbledon and one at the 2012 Olympics). Murray has struggled in 2017 and went into Wimbledon with a hip problem, but he had no trouble trouncing Alexander Bublik and Dustin Brown in his first two outings of the week. Fognini is a competent but pedestrian 10-8 lifetime at Wimbledon and has never advanced to the second week.
Pick: Murray in 3

(12) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs. (24) Sam Querrey
Neither Tsonga nor Querrey is any stranger to Wimbledon drama, and that includes against one another. In the 2012 second round, Tsonga survived a 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-7(4), 6-3, 14-12 marathon. The Frenchman ended up falling in the fourth round that year, but he is a two-time Wimbledon semifinalist (2011 and 2012) and has advanced to the quarters on two other occasions (2010 and 2016). Tsonga, who comes in at 10th in the rankings, improved to 25-7 this year with straight-set defeats of Cameron Norrie and Simone Bolelli.

Querrey famously stunned Novak Djokovic in the third round last season. The American kicked off his 2016 run by outlasting Lukas Rosol 12-10 in the fifth and has played six five-setters in his career at the AELTC–including four that have progressed to at least 7-7 (and one that ended in a 17-15 setback Marin Cilic). Querrey has minimized the physical damage so far this week, having taken care of Thomas Fabbiano in straights and Nikoloz Basilashvili in four sets.
Pick: Querrey in 5

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