Wimbledon Final Preview: Djokovic Expects Fireworks on Sunday Against Kyrgios

Wimbledon Final Preview: Djokovic Expects Fireworks on Sunday Against Kyrgios

4 min read

There's just one men's singles match left to be played at the All-England Club on Sunday and it's setting up to be quite the closing show as Novak Djokovic will take on Nick Kyrgios for the prestigious title.

Let's get into the details with Universal Tennis INSIGHTS.

Novak Djokovic 69% vs. Nick Kyrgios 31%

*Head-to-head data powered by last 15 months of matches; odds and UTR Ratings updated twice per day

Nick Kyrgios (UTR Rating 15.71) leads in career head-to-head meetings against Novak Djokovic (16.04), beating him on two occasions back in 2017. While it’s unusual that Djokovic has a losing record against any active player, it has been over five years, making the last meeting feel very far in the past.

Per INSIGHTS, Djokovic has the higher UTR Ratings (overall and three-month trending) and a superior win-loss record at 69-12. He’s significantly more experienced on this stage, having not lost a match on Centre Court in nine years. A winner at Wimbledon on six occasions, the 35-year-old is hoping to capture his fourth in a row on Sunday. A win on Sunday would pull him even with Pete Sampras' record of seven and one behind Roger Federer's eight.

Djokovic Seeks Yet Another Wimbledon Crown

This fortnight hasn’t been a walk in the park for Djokovic as he dropped a set to wild card Tim Van Rijthoven in the round of 16 and needed five sets to edge past Jannik Sinner in the quarterfinals. Against Cameron Norrie on Friday, the Serbian again lost the first set before dominating the final three. He's expecting a battle on Sunday against Kyrgios, who is ranked No. 40 on the ATP Tour but No. 9 based on UTR Ratings.

“One thing for sure, there is going to be a lot of fireworks emotionally from both of us,” Djokovic said. “It is going to be his first Grand Slam final. He is very excited and he doesn’t have much to lose and he is always playing like that. He is playing so freely, one of the biggest serves in the game. Just a big game overall, a lot of power in his shots."

Djokovic took note of their match history, though he's got experience on his side with 27 straight wins at Wimbledon and an 85-10 record at the All-England Club. Kyrgios' career record at Wimbledon is 15-7.

"We haven’t played for some time," Djokovic said. "I have never won a set off him. Hopefully, it can be different this time. "It is another final here at Wimbledon at a tournament I love so much. Hopefully, the experience can work in my favor.”

Kyrgios Eager to Get on Court

Nick Kyrgios will be contesting his first-ever Grand Slam final. (AP Photo: Alberto Pezzali)

Eight years after making his first Wimbledon quarterfinal, 27-year-old Kyrgios is preparing for his first Grand Slam final. It’s been a rollercoaster journey for him to get here, as the unseeded Australia defeated Filip Krajinovic, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Brandon Nakashima, and Cristian Garin.

Instead of having to upset No. 2 seed and INSIGHTS tournament favorite Rafael Nadal in the semifinals on Friday, Kyrgios booked his ticket into the final thanks to a walkover. The Spaniard tore an abdominal muscle in his five-set win over Taylor Fritz. Kyrgios will be more well-rested than Djokovic, but the time can work against him too as he’s had three days to think about the opportunity ahead.

"I had a shocking sleep, just with the excitement," Kyrgios said after learning of the Nadal news. "I had so much anxiety, I was already feeling so nervous, and I don't feel nervous usually."

Kyrgios is surprised to still be around but he was a dark horse pick before the tournament even began for his prowess and added unpredictability on grass. He’s 12-2 on the surface this season and part of the credit goes to his serve, which has regularly topped 130 mph.

"I just want to go out on the practice court now and hit some tennis balls and just talk," Kyrgios said. "I want the final to come already. I know that I have to kind of just calm down."

Stay tuned for more from INSIGHTS, and to learn more about Universal Tennis, click here.

•UTR Ratings and INSIGHTS probabilities as of 6 a.m. EST, July 9, 2022.

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