As the day draws nearer for the start of play on Day 1 of The Championships, Wimbledon, there is already controversy on the women's side. The All England Lawn Tennis Club has chosen to have last year's losing finalist, Sabine Lisicki open Day 2 of the tournament rather than 5 time Wimbledon champion and current World's No. 1 Serena Williams. There is also speculation that Serena will be relegated to Court No. 2, the Graveyard Court in her opening match seeing as the AELTC is sticking to its tradition of having one women's match and 2 men's match only on Centre Court. On Court No. 1, current French Open Champion, Maria Sharapova will be playing her first match against British wildcard Samantha Murray.
I usually don't take a stance on issues such as this as I find it it too tiring to do so, but sometimes I do have to wonder what more does Serena Williams need to do to be afforded just a teensy bit of respect at this particular event. It is hard not to think all kinds of negative things when the same garbage keeps happening year after everlasting year at Wimbledon. At some point in time you hope it just stops.
That being said, I am quite excited for the start of the tournament and while I may miss a few matches, I am going to try my best to watch as many matches as I possibly can. I don't know whether the AELTC still has the paid streaming serve that they used to have where you could do match catch ups that you missed, but if anyone knows of a paid service other than WatchESPN (which is not available in my country), please do hit me up on Twitter or post in the comments.
Day 1 features 32 matches from the bottom half of the draw. The Spin's team picks are in red. Remember if you are playing TAT's Suicide Pool, you will need to get your picks in by tonight.
What to Watch:-
Venus Williams going up against up and comer Maria Teresa Toro-Flor. Venus needs to be very careful in this match as Toro-Flor, hits the ball well (at least on clay) and has a pretty good serve. I expect Venus to win this one in straights if she serves and returns as we know she can on grass.
Yanina Wickmayer and Sam Stosur. Wickmayer did not really play well in the match that I saw of her in the TopShelf Open. That being said neither did Stosur in Eastbourne. This will be a hard fought battle but I expect Wickmayer to pull what may be considered an upset.
Petra Kvitova going up against her countrywoman Andrea Hlavackova. It would be good to see whether the hamstring injury that forced Kvitova out of her quarterfinal match against Heather Watson in Eastbourne has got better with rest. If not, look for Kvitova to be bundled out in straight sets.
Maria Teresa Toro-Flor
Michelle Larcher de Brito
Alison Van Uvtyanck