Novak Djokovic vs. Ernests Gulbis Preview
Where: All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, Wimbledon
When: Saturday, July 8, 2017, 5:00 AM ET
TV Broadcast: ESPN
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Betting on Novak Djokovic (-1,500)
After getting a free pass in the first round thanks to Martin Klizan’s retirement, World No. 2 Novak Djokovic made quick work of his second-round opponent Adam Pavlasek, 6-2, 6-2, 6-1. The Djoker was clearly not messing around, as he won 70 percent of his first serve points, 74 percent of second serve points, and 51 percent of return points en route to his easy victory.
Djokovic has had a largely uneven season thus far. He had a disappointing second-round exit at the Australian Open, and suffered a straight-sets quarterfinal flameout at the French. But despite those setbacks, it’s been so far so good for him on grass. He won his warm-up tournament at Nottingham with relative ease, and has yet to drop a set in five matches on the surface this season.
Djokovic will be the overwhelming favorite to keep that good run going against third-round opponent, Ernests Gulbis, whom he has dominated his career head-to-heads. The Serb is 6-1 all-time in seven meetings against the Latvian.
Betting on Ernests Gulbis (+800)
Is Ernests Gulbis back? After three down years and an injury-shortened 2017 due to a wrist problem, the 28-year-old is making serious waves at Wimbledon.
Gulbis completely dominated his first-round matchup with Victor Estrella Burgos, winning in incredible 86 percent of first serve points and 57 percent of return points in a 6-1, 6-1, 6-2 victory. He then pulled off a similarly impressive performance against Juan Martin del Potro. Gulbis’ power was on full display with 25 aces and 60 winners as he downed the Argentine in just three sets.
The former top-10 player Gulbis has had his troubles with Djokovic—as have a lot of players—although he has managed to take a set off the Serb in each of their last two matches. With his confidence sky-high and Djokovic susceptible to upsets this season, there’s at least a chance Gulbis pushes the Djoker hard in this match.
Djokovic (-1,500) moves on to the round of 16 with a four-set win over Gulbis.
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