by Karen

Quoting from Charles Dickens “It was the best of times.  It was the worst of times”. 

I absolutely love Wimbledon. It is without a doubt the tournament that started my love for tennis.  It was the only tournament that was featured on my Jamaican black and white tv way back in the day.  The only players I saw where Martina and Chris Evert.  I did not truly understand the sport and I confess there were times when I wished that it was not being shown because that meant that I was not watching the Sunday Matinee, which usually featured, Dean Martin and Company. 

Fast forward many years later and I really do look forward to this tournament.  Technology has changed and the tennis is now right in your living room.  The sport of tennis is now available on your computer, hand held devices and everywhere you go you can get up to the minute scores of what is happening at Wimbledon. 

However, there is one thing about Wimbledon that never ceases to annoy me no matter how much I love the tournament and that is the way how the women are treated.  I am not going to get into it in this post, but suffice it to say that I will be keeping my eye out to see just how the court assignments are being done and whether at some point in time we will get 2 women’s matches on Centre Court, whether we will get a women’s match scheduled at a time of day when they can get maximum exposure and whether the women will get the same level of respect regarding their on court demeanour rather than the PR shill that gets handed to the commentators once they are behind the microphone. 

All that being said I am very excited for the start of the tournament.  My friend Patrick (you can follow him on Twitter @TWMasterAce has looked at the draw and has broken it down.  In addition to that, some of my favourite writers have also done some fantastic work and you can read their thoughts here, here and here

First quarter

This is the toughest quarter led by Serena Williams. S Williams has not made it past the fourth round in the first two Slams but playing on grass should revive her spirits. The reigning French Open champion, Maria Sharapova, is in this quarter and has made only one final at Wimbledon since winning it in 2004 in straight sets over S Williams. Eugenie Bouchard, only player to make both 2014 Slam semifinals, Camila Giorgi, who defeated Sharapova at Indian Wells, Angelique Kerber, Tamira Paszek, who qualified for the main draw despite doing well in the past, and Andrea Petkovic are in this quarter.

Semifinalist : Serena Williams

Second quarter
After being a finalist at the French Open, Simona Halep could not ask for a better draw despite retiring in her match against Annika Beck at ‘s-Hertogenbosch with an injury. Her toughest competition are in the bottom half of this quarter between Ana Ivanovic and Sabine Lisicki, who will open the honors on Centre Court on Tuesday by making the finals and the defending champion, Marion Bartoli, retiring in 2013. Another player that can change the dynamic of this quarter is Madison Keys.

Semifinalist : Simona Halep

Third quarter
I would say that this is the wide open quarter. Agnieszka Radwanska has made the semifinals or better in the past two years. She had a golden chance to win a Slam in the wide open draw but lost to Sabine Lisicki in a three set nailbiter. Victoria Azarenka, who made the semifinals in 2011 & 2012, just returned to the tour from a foot injury.

Semifinalist : Agnieszka Radwanska

Fourth quarter
I would say that this is the second toughest quarter in the draw led by Na Li, who has struggled since Australian Open capped off by first round loss at the French Open to Kristina Mladenovic. The person with the most explosive game today is Petra Kvitova, who has made the quarterfinals or better the last four years capped off with title at 2011. Venus Williams can make a solid run as she won the title 5 times and is on her favorite surface. Sloane Stephens has made the second week of a Slam six consecutive times.

Semifinalist : Na Li

Winner – Serena Williams to win her 18th career Slam(6th at Wimbledon)

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