By Ros Satar, at Wimbledon
- Novak Djokovic  v Roberto Bautista Agut  | Djokovic leads H2H 7-3
- Roger Federer  v Rafael Nadal  | Nadal leads H2H 24-15
WIMBLEDON, UK – The Big Three look to rule the roost once more as Novak Djokovic faces Roberto Bautista Agut, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal clash for the first time here since THAT final.
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Novak Djokovic  v Roberto Bautista Agut  | Djokovic leads H2H 7-3
The defending champion has already notched up up 70th Wimbledon match-win with his comprehensive victory over David Goffin in the quarter-finals and is looking to make it back to back Wimbledon titles for the second time in his career.
For the Spaniard, it is a chance to make his first Grand Slam final, and he would become only the third Spaniard to do so at Wimbledon, behind Manuel Santana (1966) and Rafael Nadal (2006-08, 2010-11). This is best Slam performance, with his previous being reaching the Australian open quarter-finals this year. His preparation could not have gone better – reaching the Halle final and losing to Roger Federer.
Having picked up two of three wins this year alone, Bautista Agut may have nothing spectacular altogether in his game, but his consistency in general, the fact he makes few mistakes and takes advantage of any opportunity his opponent puts before him makes him troublesome.
Djokovic has grown to look more ominous as the rounds have gone on, dropping just one set (to Hubert Hurkacz in the third round), while Bautista Agut’s sole dropped set came at the hands of Guido Pella in the previous round.
It would be a monumental shock should Bautista Agut progress, against the Serbian, whose all-court game is already legendary, but on grass seems to go up a gear. But it would be conceivable that sets will be dropped.
Prediction: Djokovic in four sets.
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Roger Federer  v Rafael Nadal  | Nadal leads H2H 24-15
Episode 40 of this rivalry is among us – let the hype begin. The fifth Slam semi-final encounter between Nadal and Federer started with the switcheroo in the seedings which caused Nadal to furrow is brow (despite the fact he has not performed to his seedings for several years), and while this is their fourth meeting at Wimbledon, it is the first since that epic 2008 final.
There Nadal got his first (and indeed only) Channel Slam, but Federer leads their head to head on the green stuff 2-1, with all their grass encounters happening at SW19.
It will be a battle of the fluid all-court game of Federer against the aggressive baseline counterpunching brutality of Nadal’s game. Where the Spaniard will look to pummel from the baseline, but is more than capable of very nifty court coverage, Federer’s fluid transitions around the court are a more than worthy counterpoint.
Federer has perhaps looked the little less sure of the two, but of course once normal service has been resumed for the 20-time Slam champion, he has looked as dominant as always on this surface.
All players have dropped at least one set, but Federer was caught napping by Kei Nishikori in the quarter-final. Still you would struggle to back against Federer in his own wheelhouse in Wimbledon, but this might be a long one.
Prediction: Federer in five sets.
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