ATP Wimbledon Day Five Tips: Norrie unlikely to breeze past Johnson
Round three at Wimbledon starts on Friday, with eight matches on the men's singles schedule as the tournament continues. Dan Weston is back to discuss the day five action...
Djokovic again a big favourite to win
Novak Djokovic headlines the day five schedule from the top half of the draw, with the top seed facing countryman Miomir Kecmanovic in the third round. Kecmanovic didn't win a single match in the grass court warm-ups, but has got through two matches as a strong pre-match favourite to get to this stage. There's little in the data to suggest anything other than a routine Djokovic victory on Friday, and the market agrees, pricing him up at 1.04 to progress.
Norrie to find Johnson a challenge
Thankfully, after a week where there's been an abundance of heavy favourites, Djokovic is the only heavy pre-match favourite on day five. The next shortest-priced favourite is Cameron Norrie, at 1.31 against Steve Johnson.
I do think Norrie should be a bit bigger, given that Johnson is far from a mug on grass, plus the Brit to play a five-setter in excess of three hours against Jaume Munar in the previous round. I'm struggling to see Norrie winning this easily and three sets can be laid on the Exchange in the 'Number of Sets?' market at around 2.38 currently.
Impressive Isner to push Sinner
Moving on, several players resume their tournament on Friday after really impressing me with their performances on Wednesday.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, John Isner is one, and the big-serving American put out Andy Murray in four sets, disappointing the centre court crowd at SW19 in the process. Isner's trademark brutal serve was, naturally, in evidence again during that match, but he also showed superb touch with his net play, frustrating Murray in the process.
On Friday, Isner is again pre-match underdog and this time he faces Jannik Sinner, who had little in the way of track record on grass prior to this year's tournament. Sinner still has plenty to prove on grass, having dropped sets against both Mikael Ymer and Stan Wawrinka so far, and Isner's relentless serve will be a real test in these conditions.
Humbert in good form ahead of Goffin clash
The other player who impressed me was Ugo Humbert, who was superb in despatching Casper Ruud in four sets on Wednesday. His performance was so strong it seems utterly bizarre that he dropped two sets to the Argentine clay courter, Tomas Etcheverry, in round one, and lost to mediocre opposition in the grass warm-up events for Wimbledon too.
Humbert hit a stunning 53 winners in four sets, and if he can reduce his unforced error percentage, could well get towards week two in this tournament. He's a 2.30 underdog against David Goffin, and that looks a little big.
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