August 20, 2022

Three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic arrives at Wimbledon looking for a 21st Grand Slam title. Although he was barred from the Australian Open, his French Open title defense came to an end against Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals.

After trailing rivals Nadal and Roger Federer in the Grand Slam tally, Djokovic finally matched them by winning his 20th major title at Wimbledon last year. However, the Spaniard once again took the lead.

The Serb has enjoyed considerable success over the years at the All England Club and will be eager to get his hands on a Grand Slam trophy.

On that note, let’s look at who Djokovic will have to go through to win his 21st Major and his seventh Wimbledon title:

Novak Djokovic’s 1st round opponent – Kwon Soon-woo

Djokovic will kick off his title defense against world number 75 Kwon Soon-woo. The Serbian won his only encounter in straight sets at Serbia Open 2021. The South Korean has only won one match at Wimbledon so far, in their second round match last year. He’s unlikely to score an upset win against the Serb.

Novak Djokovic’s probable opponent in the 2nd round – Thanasi Kokkinakis / Kamil Majchrzak

Kokkinakis is yet to win a main draw match at Wimbledon but he has played at a decent level this year and could meet Djokovic in the second round. The former world No. 1 could also meet Kamil Majchrzak.

This is Majchrzak’s second main draw appearance here, having lost in the first round in 2019. Both opponents lack the experience to trouble the defending champion and Djokovic is expected to advance easily to the third round.

Novak Djokovic’s probable opponent in the 3rd round – Miomir Kecmanovic / Laslo Djere

Djokovic could meet a compatriot in the third round. Although Kecmanovic is his likely opponent based on the standings, he hasn’t won a game on grass this year.

Djere pushed Djokovic to three sets at the Serbia Open earlier this year, but he is yet to get past the second round at Wimbledon. If they met, he could definitely fight the defending champion.

Novak Djokovic’s probable opponent in the 4th round – Reilly Opelka / Tim van Rijthoven

Opelka’s grass-court season has been quite disappointing so far, losing in the first round of both tournaments he has entered. It will take a huge effort for him to qualify for the fourth round here.

Tim van Rijthoven has received a wildcard at Wimbledon based on his winning run at the Libema Open. Having never won a match on the ATP Tour before entering the tournament, he surprised two of the top 10 players, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Daniil Medvedev, to win the title there. It will be interesting to see if he is able to continue against the major’s exploits on grass as well.

Djokovic will be favored to win against either.

Novak Djokovic’s Likely Quarter-Final Opponent – Carlos Alcaraz/Jannik Sinner/Andy Murray

Teenage sensation Carlos Alcaraz could meet Djokovic again in a thrilling quarter-final showdown. The Spaniard beat him in the semi-finals of the Madrid Open earlier this year.

Men’s Singles – Projected QuarterfinalsDjokovic vs Alcaraz Ruud vs HurkaczBerrettini vs TsitsipasAuger-Aliassime vs Nadal#Wimbledon

Alcaraz has been one of the best players on the tour this year, but he’s yet to prove himself on grass. While Jannik Sinner has had a pretty decent season, injuries seem to have affected his performance recently.

Andy Murray, two-time Wimbledon champion, is also in the game. He advanced to the final in Stuttgart to start the season on grass, but again got injured. If healthy, the Briton is still a threat to win here and can take on Djokovic.

According to the rankings, Roland-Garros 2022 semi-finalist Casper Ruud is likely to be Djokovic’s opponent in the last four. However, the Norwegian hasn’t won any matches at Wimbledon so far.

Last year’s semi-finalist Hubert Hurkacz is likely to make a deep run yet again. He recently won the Halle Open and could definitely challenge Djokovic if they meet here.

Novak Djokovic’s likely opponent in the final – Rafael Nadal / Matteo Berrettini

Djokovic could meet his old rival Nadal for the title. He has two wins over the Spaniard at Wimbledon, beating him in the 2018 semi-final and the 2011 final. Nadal hasn’t beaten the Serbian outside clay since 2013, so the defending champion has the advantage here .

Djokovic could also meet Berrettini in a rematch from last year’s final. The Italian won two titles on grass ahead of Wimbledon and will enter the tournament on a nine-game winning streak. He seems like an improved player now so the result might be different from last year. The defending champion has his work cut out if he wants to triumph again at Wimbledon.