James Duckworth vs. Alexander Zverev
|Date & Time||Tuesday July 3, 2018, 7:00 AM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Alexander Zverev and James Duckworth meet in the first round of the 2018 tennis Wimbledon.
Alexander Zverev started the season on fire and did have great success during the clay season, but he’s coming off a first match loss in Halle. In the losing effort, Zverev won just 59 percent of his first serve points and 33 percent of his second serve points. I have questioned at times how the young Zverev is going to handle such a massive workload, as he’s consistently made deep runs and seems to play in every tournament. Sometimes we forget Zverev is just 20 years old, even if he’s been one of the more consistent players on tour. Zverev is capable of winning this tournament, but I want to watch his first couple of matches first. Zverev has lost in the first round of a grand slam just three times in his career. Zverev has split his last six matches on grass court.
James Duckworth has very little to no playing time under his belt the last couple of years, as he’s fresh off a foot surgery and returns to a ranking outside of the top-1000. Duckworth played two qualifying matches for the Australian Open, and that’s about all we’ve seen from the young Australian. When in good form, Duckworth can be a decent opponent, as he was a top-100 player a few years ago and did win the 2016 Toyota Challenger in one of his more recent tournaments. Needless to say, it’s going to be a steep climb for Duckworth to return to form given the lack of matches he’s played. Duckworth hopes to make it to the second round of a grand slam for the fourth time since 2015. Duckworth has lost five straight matches on grass court.
There two have played once, which was in the 2014 Heilbronn II Challenger, a match Zverev won in straight sets. The match took 19 games to be decided.
Duckworth isn’t going to go from not playing in two years to beating one of the top players in the world. This match almost isn’t fair, and the only reason worth playing it is to get Duckworth some reps under his belt. The Australian has zero chance of even competing in what will be a three set victory.
Zverev wins an ugly first round match.