The two weeks of Wimbledon are always a treat.
The most British of sporting events manages to capture not only the hearts of tennis fans around the world, but also those of many people who, for whatever reason, have absolutely no interest whatsoever in the sport outside of late June/early July.
Not a year goes by without plenty of drama – and this year has been no exception.
From the rise and rise of Bernard Tomic, the 18-year-old Australian who came through the qualifiers and has since dumped the likes of Nikolay Davydenko and Robin Soderling unceremoniously out of the tournament, to yesterday’s action in the Ladies singles event which saw both of the Williams’ sisters lose in the fourth round at Wimbledon for the first time. Venus and Serena’s losses were in addion to world number one Caroline Wozniacki somehow failing to progress despite enjoying a two game lead in the deciding set, and having earlier stormed through a first set which she took 6-1.
Wozniacki’s exit leaves her still without a Grand Slam title, and will again no doubt again raise the question of how a player can remain at the top of the sport’s rankings without having secured a major title. It also leaves the tournament wide open, with former champion Maria Sharapova the only player in the quarter finals to have even the experience of a Grand Slam final.
The big story of the men’s event may be that of Tomic, but the all of the big names are still in the draw, making it to the quarter finals without much fuss.
Britain’s hopes of a men’s singles winner continue to rest on the shoulders of Andy Murray, whose form has improved as he has progressed through each round.
Rafa Nadal too has looked more and more like the player to beat, and barring a surprise in either his or Murray’s quarter final ties, the two will meet in the semi final for the second year running.
With Djokovic and Federer also reaching the last eight as expected, it is difficult to see past the top four seeds when looking for a potential winner. But there still remains plenty of potential for a shock or two, as there was at the same stage of last year’s tournament when Tomas Berdych denied Federer the chance to contest an eighth consecutive Wimbledon final.
Whether the top four make it a repeat of the semi final line up at Roland Garros earlier in the month, or whether Tomic, Lopez, Tsonga or Fish upset the script and add their own names to the list of semi-finalists, there is certain to be much more drama before Sunday’s conclusion.