Groth vs. Nishikori
|Date & Time||Monday June 27, 2016, 9:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line -- Over/Under:
Kei Nishikori and Sam Groth square off early in the first round of the 2016 Wimbledon.
Kei Nishikori has played just one match since reaching the fourth round of the French Open, as he was forced to pull out of the Gerry Weber Open due to a rib injury. Nishikori has had a very consistent 2016 season overall, but his current health questions don’t exactly help him in a tournament where he hasn’t had much success to begin with. Nishikori is just 8-6 all time at the Wimbledon and it’s the only grand slam he hasn’t made at least the quarterfinals. However, when healthy, Nishikori and his shotmaking can beat anybody. Nishikori has been eliminated in the first round of a grand slam twice since 2014. Nishikori has won 10 of his last 15 matches on grass.
Sam Groth has lost four of his last seven matches and will be double dipping in this tournament with his partner Robert Lindstedt. Groth has really taken a plunge in the rankings since being a top-60 player a year ago, and his only real recent success was making the quarterfinals of the Manchester Challenger. Groth needs to be more consistent with his service game to have any sort of shot at an upset, as his power game is the one thing that gives him a shot to win matches against anybody when he’s feeling it. Groth has made it out of the first round of a grand slam five times. Groth has split his last 10 matches on grass.
The only previous match between these two took place in the 2015 Washington Open, a match Nishikori won in 20 games. This will obviously be their first meeting on grass.
Groth won’t be able to keep up with the shotmaking and athleticism of Nishikori. Yes, the rib is a concern with Nishikori, but assuming he’s feeling better and ready to go, this should be a three set match.
Nishikori has been playing clean tennis for the most part and and should be able to overwhelm the Australian.