By Tim Parsons-
Defending Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic will face South Korea’s Kwon Soon-woo in the opening round as he bids to retain his crown , after avoiding Murray
Also, the No. 2 seed Rafael Nadal, fresh off his 22nd grand slam victory at the French Open, will play Argentina’s Francisco Cerúndolo in the opening round and has a tricky potential fourth round match against Marin Cilic to contend with.
The quarterfinals presents the possibility for a rematch against talented Canadian star Felix Auger Aliassime, who recently pushed Nadal all the way in a five-set epic in the fourth round at Roland Garros.
Last year’s runner-up Matteo Berrettini is projected to face Stefanos Tsitsipas in the quarterfinals, while third seed Casper Ruud could play Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz, who recently claimed the grass court title in Halle.
Home favorite Andy Murray received a favourable first-round draw against Australia’s James Duckworth, who is yet to win a match on the ATP Tour this season and last week lost to world No. 277 Paul Jubb in qualifying for Queen’s Club.
Djokovic is hoping for a seventh Wimbledon title and a fourth in succession following triumphs in 2018, 2019 and 2021, after the cancellation of the 2020 championships.
Nadal, who has won the Australian Open and French Open already this year to reach a record 22 men’s grand slam singles titles, there is the possibility of a rare calendar Grand Slam.
He must carry off the title at Wimbledon for the first time since 2010 to stay in the hunt for that elusive clean sweep, last achieved in men’s singles in 1969 by Rod Laver.
Murray was paired with James Duckworth of Australia and could face big-serving American John Isner in round two. Murray has been troubled by an abdominal strain in the past fortnight, and it remains to be seen whether the 35-year-old is in shape to be a contender.
A notable first-round clash saw three-time major winner Stan Wawrinka, in the draw on a wildcard, paired with Italian 10th seed Sinner, while Matteo Berrettini, runner-up to Djokovic last year, will play Chile’s Cristian Garin.
Italian Berrettini, who has won the Stuttgart and Queen’s Club titles on grass this year, features on Nadal’s side of the draw, while in the top half Djokovic has the likes of Carlos Alcaraz and Hubert Hurkacz for company.
Alcaraz, the 19-year-old Spanish revelation who has won four titles already this year, was drawn to face the experienced German Jan-Lennard Struff in round one.