Wimbledon 2015 will take place from the All England Club between June 29th and July 12th this year., for the second time in his career, will be the defending champion when play gets underway at the grass court Grand Slam. Not surprisingly, the World No. 1 is the betting favourite on the eve of the start of tennis’s most prestigious tournament.
Here’s a look at the top eight favourites to win the title outright along with their betting odds:
1. Novak Djokovic, Bwin (7/5; +140)
2. Andy Murray, William Hill (11/4; +275)
3. Roger Federer, William Hill (7/1; +700)
4. Stan Wawrinka, Betway (16/1; +1600)
5. Rafael Nadal, Bwin (22/1, +2200)
6. Tomas Berdych, William Hill (40/1, +4000)
7. Milos Raonic, BetVictor (45/1, +4500)
8. Kei Nishikori, William Hill (50/1, +5000)
Djokovic doesn’t look like that bad of a pick at +140 except that he has not been active on tour since losing in the championship match at Roland Garros a few weeks ago. The World No. 1 did play in the The Boodles, an exhibition tournament that serves as a final tune-up for the grass court Slam. In that event he defeated Richard Gasquet but lost to Alexander Zverev, the latter being a player I spotlighted as a future star back in April.
In my opinion, Djokovic priced at +140 is a questionable risk and instead those looking for a value line should look at the other favourites.
Andy Murray for example, at +275 with William Hill, appears to be the best bet to take. He does a share a draw to the final with both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer however the former appears to be well-off his best form while the latter will soon be 34 years old. Federer has not done that much in Grand Slams since making the 2014 Wimbledon final and five-set tennis against much younger players could prove too challenging now.
Wawrinka, as the fourth favourite, could easily be over-rated too. The French Open champion was not that active during the recent grass court tournaments. His only result saw him lose to Kevin Anderson in straight sets. In my view, it’s unclear where Wawrinka’s drive is right now: is he looking to put an exclamation point on his career with a Wimbledon title or is he somewhat relaxed or satisfied following his monumental achievement in Paris?
Berdych and Raonic, at long odds, are both tempting picks. Berdych, a former finalist, and Raonic, a semifinalist from last year, are both players that could win Wimbledon if there are surprise upsets.
However the knock against the Czech remains that he’s seemingly always a quarterfinalist, semifinalist, or runner-up with very few titles to his credit. With Raonic, you have to wonder if everything is fine with his body. A close look at the Canadian shows that he does not have that many good wins this season. Furthermore, Raonic lost to Gilles Simon, a very peripheral threat on grass, at the recently completed AEGON Championships.
Overall, I do not think that Wimbledon 2015 has a clear favourite. That said, my opinion is that the opening rounds will be very telling. My recommendation, if you are not going to take Murray, is to hold off of betting pre-tournament and to instead pay close attention to the line scores in the opening rounds.
Look for a player who moves through the first two rounds with minimal effort and straight-set victories. Likewise, if you see a player struggle a little, even in winning, then take it to mean that he should be avoided.