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22 Jun, 2022 18:25

Banned Medvedev names Wimbledon favorites

The world number one reeled off three names to challenge for the London Grand Slam
Banned Medvedev names Wimbledon favorites

Russian tennis world number one Daniil Medvedev has revealed his three favorites to win this year's edition of Wimbledon. 

Due to a ban on Russian athletes in relation to their country's military operation in Ukraine, Medvedev can play no part in the SW19 tournament which kicks off on June 27. 

With the ATP and WTA tours deciding to strip the British spectacle of ranking points in reaction to the ban, Medvedev's spot as men's number one will remain secure for the time being. 

Competing at the Mallorca Open this week, the 26-year old was asked to name his favorites for the trophy in London and came up with three options, naming 2021 champion Novak Djokovic, reigning Australian Open and French Open king Rafael Nadal, and last year's beaten Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini.

"Novak is always the favourite," Medvedev said to Diario de Mallorca.

"He has won the last three Wimbledons that have been played. He plays very well on grass.

"If we talk about the best players in history on grass, I would place him at the top, although I have not seen [Bjorn] Borg or [Pete] Sampras play," he conceded.

"From my generation, Federer and Djokovic are the best [on grass]. Of course, Nadal can win any tournament he plays in and Berrettini is playing at a high level.

"Speaking of favorites, Djokovic, Berrettini and Nadal," Medvedev concluded. 

As per his own plans, Medvedev said that he was looking forward to "starting my best part of the year, which is the American tour and the US Open".

"The 2021 US Open victory was incredible," he recalled. "You value it more when things are not going so well. I really played very well.

"I have to try to follow the same path," he insisted.

Like he will at Flushing Meadows, Medvedev is defending his title in Mallorca with his 2021 triumph on the Spanish island his first-ever grasscourt tournament win.

He achieved this by beating Sam Querrey 6-4, 6-2, and going all the way again would represent reaching a third successive final after falling at the last hurdle at Rosmalen and in the Halle Open recently.

Medvedev got his campaign at the Mallorca Open off to a winning start by coming from behind to beat compatriot Aslan Karatsev 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in the round of 16 on Wednesday afternoon.