Rafael Nadal will be even more furious with Wimbledon after Roger Federer draw | Tennis | Sport


Nadal is the man in form entering the Wimbledon having won back-to-back titles on the ATP Tour, with his last being his 12th French Open trophy.

He hasn’t competed in a grass court tournament leading up to Wimbledon, but he will no doubt hold a lot of confidence from his comfortable win over Novak Djokovic at the Italian Open in May.

The Spaniard also pushed the reigning Wimbledon champion to a five-set thriller in their semi-final clash at SW19 last year.

But there was an air of frustration from Nadal’s camp this week when the seedings were released, revealing Federer leapfrogged him into the No 2 spot.

Wimbledon draw in FULL: Who Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will face

The All England Lawn Tennis Club have employed a unique seeding system since 2002, opting to combine the current ATP ranking points with players’ previous results on grass courts over a two-year period.

“It’s just Wimbledon that does it,” he bemoaned.

“If everyone did it, I think it would be appropriate or correct. Either way, being second or third seed, I have to play at the best level to aspire to the things I aspire to.

“It is better to be second than third, but if they consider that I have to be third, I will accept.”

Roger Federer projected route to Wimbledon final

But Nadal may be a little less reluctant to “accept” the change in his seeding after the Wimbledon draw was announced.

The 33-year-old faces arguably the toughest draw out of ‘The Big Three’, with a potential match-up with Nick Kyrgios in the second round.

Nadal opens the tournament against Japan’s Yuchi Sugita, an opponent he has never faced before.

But a possible second-round match against Kyrgios could be followed by Denis Shapovalov in the third round and Marin Cilic at the start of the second week.

No 5 seed Dominic Thiem could then come next in the quarter-finals with a potential match-up against Federer in the semi-finals.

If Nadal manages to get through that tough draw, he will then likely have to overcome defending champion Djokovic in the final.

Federer meanwhile has fared much better in the draw, with potential match against Lucas Rouille, Borna Coric and Kei Nishikori seen as his toughest tests before a possible meeting with Nadal in the semi-finals.

Had Wimbledon used the same seeding format as the other three Grand Slams, Nadal may be the one facing an easier route to the final.

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