Wimbledon Men's Singles Quarter-Final Tips: Djokovic heavy favourite to extend Rublev's QF misery

Serbian Tennis Player Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic is a heavy favourite to defeat Andrey Rublev...

Tuesday in the men's singles at Wimbledon sees the start of the quarter-final stage, and a later start on the schedule. Dan Weston returns to preview the two matches...

  • Sinner a big favourite over Safiullin

  • Djokovic expected to end Rublev's tournament

  • Quarter-final hurdle again likely to be too much for Rublev

Sinner likely to end Safiullin's journey

We have to wait until 14:30 UK time for the start of the men's singles action at SW19 with Jannik Sinner facing one of the surprise packages of the tournament, Roman Safiullin, in the opening match of the day.

Unfortunately for those anticipating competitive action on Tuesday, both favourites are anticipated to ease to victories, and Sinner is the bigger-priced of the two at a current 1.192/11. To be honest, it's tough to dispute this line against a player more known for participating on the Challenger Tour.

Whatever the result of this match, Safiullin will not need to play in Challengers for a while. He'll have a career-best ranking even if he loses tomorrow, and should get direct entry into the majority of events for the foreseeable future. As for whether he can cause another big shock, I'm not so sure.

Denis Shapovalov and Roberto Bautista-Agut have already been dispatched via underdog wins for Safiullin, but a hat-trick looks unlikely. Sinner has dropped just one set so far in the tournament, against Quentin Halys, and there was more evidence prior to the tournament that Halys would be a tough opponent - this run from Safiullin has come from pretty much out of the blue, even losing to a player ranked outside the top 200 in the qualifiers for Stuttgart a month ago on grass. Sinner should just be too good.

Market giving Rublev little chance against Djokovic

That is also likely to be the case for Novak Djokovic for his match with Andrey Rublev. Prior to his hard-fought four-set win over Hubert Hurkacz, I thought there was a solid chance Djokovic could win the tournament without dropping a set, but he couldn't quite convert a 2-0 overnight lead into a straight-set triumph.

However, the market is strong on the odds-on tournament favourite, with Djokovic trading at just 1.081/12 to get the win. Of course, a major part of those odds are down to how good Djokovic is, and a 30+ match unbeaten run at this venue, but another consideration likely factored in by the market is Rublev's dreadful 0-7 record in Grand Slam quarter-finals.

If it wasn't difficult enough to beat Djokovic in a best of five set match, dealing with that further mental baggage could make Rublev's chances even more tough to advocate.

In fact, the duo met at this stage in the Australian Open in January, when Djokovic won easily dropping just seven games in three sets, and he's an even shorter price here against Rublev.

No doubt Rublev is a decent all-court player, and has pretty solid grass numbers over the last couple of years, but Djokovic's data and current level looks extremely high, and the Serb is just likely to be too strong in all facets of the game tomorrow and pick up yet another victory here at Wimbledon.


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