Patrick Mouratoglou

Week one wrap-up: Fed back to business

Patrick Mouratoglou

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We take a look at who's up, who's down and what to look forward to after week one of Wimbledon.

Federer to return to his best

All the favorites are through to the second week: Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal headline the field as well as Andy Roddick, Novak Djokovic, Robin Sodlering, Lleyton Hewitt, Tomas Berdych and home favourite Andy Murray.

We have an outstanding Wimbledon with a lot of quality matches.The man from Switzerland seems to have the best chance.

Even though Berdych - who might be his next opponent - beat him in Miami earlier this year, Roger seems to be getting his game under control.

His first-round match against Alejandro Falla was all he needed to find his rhythm. He goes into the next rounds with the expectation of playing his best tennis.

In the top half of the draw, I like Hewitt's form. It's a real pleasure to see him back at the top at his age after missing the competition for so long due to injury. It shows fighting spirit, a strength of this player.

He could create some headlines by reaching the semi-finals, where he would play Federer.

The top half of the draw is as tough as possible with players such as Roddick and Djokovic.

There will be some great matches ahead.

Despite the top quality of this half, I still like Federer's chances to reach another final.

Tough draw for Rafa

In the bottom half of the draw, it won't get easier for Rafa as the perspective of meeting Soderling and Murray looms.

Both have the tools to upset the Mallorcan, who likes to dictate points and struggles  on this surface against players who have more groundstrokes than him.

Rafa is having issues returning first serves and has to be on the defensive right after, while Roger has fewer problems thanks to his sliced backhand.

The quality of his first serve is also open to discussion on grass as players are not shy to take risks while returning his second.

If he doesn't control the point early, he faces more pressure.

Watch out for Soderling! His serve and return of serve are top notch, as well as his groundstrokes. His footwork has improved too, as have his mental abilities, which he has been working on with Magnus Norman.

The Swede is a model pro in terms of humility, work-rate, concentration and management.

I would not be surprised if Soderling beats Nadal.

Murray is making progress into the draw.  Despite months of issues he seems to have found his groove.

His game is more composed and more solid. He is also more relaxed while playing the most important tournament of the year without scoring great results prior to Wimbledon. He doesn't seem to to be struggling with the pressure, which is a key indicator for great players.

Therefore he can find his best level of play when he needs to and should reach the semi-finals.

Mahut/Isner - when humans show no limits

The match between Nicolas Mahut and John Isner broke numerous records.

It also shows the ability of the human being to do the unthinkable., to achieve the greatest.

Such a match would have been unscripted before it happened, an 11-hour theatre act between two great actors.

They never gave up and they never thought they would lose. They also kept their focus while playing at a great level.

They found solutions every time they were in trouble with their serve.

This historic match shows how great willpower can be when there are no fixed limits.

I am very proud of Mahut, because he went to hell and back and showed amazing fighting spirit.

The fact is he is French when France badly need great champions to make the world forget what the French football team did during the World Cup, who make us look like fools.

Thank you Nicolas - Mahut of course, not Anelka!

Grass allows unknowns to shine

In the women's draw, we saw a few unknown players keen to play on grass.

Petra Kvitova headlined the field  by playing a great match against Victoria Azarenka.

She's a left-handed player, who served perfectly, using the slice with great efficiency.

Kvitova also managed to return the serve flat to the centre of her opponent's feet with a lot of power, which allowed her to play her second shot by moving forward to the net.

The Belarusian found no solutions despite being in top shape.

I have always enjoyed watching Kvitova. She's a tall player and could be unbeatable when moving forward.

For strange reasons her level didn't improve last year and her current standing is unfair compared to the level of play she can reach.

She is still young and I wish her nothing but the best beacause she has a modern and beautiful game.

I have the same view of Klara Zakopalova, who is playing the best tournament of her career by beating Aravane Rezai and Flavia Penetta.

The surface suits her own game, she can hit the ball flat with a lot of speed, which upsets the opponent.

Blockbuster double bill

You could not find a better line-up with Serena Williams taking on Maria Sharapova and Kim Clijsters playing Justine Henin.

The first clash will witness two players with a similar style.

Serve is the key to their game as well as their big aggression.

They try to return as many second serves as they can and to overpower the opponent as early as possible.

Fans of smooth play should not watch this match as Centre Court should see many bullets fired.

The second showdown should, however, be kinder to technicians.

Henin will try to impose the game she has been working on since her return to the tour. She should play serve and volley and then chip and charge on Kim's second serve.

She will try to move forward to the net as early as possible to put pressure on her opponent, who should dominate the rallies.

I enjoy Kim's game a lot. I like the way she moves on the court, takes the ball early, and steps forward to finish the point quickly.

She brings a lot of energy, a positive one, in her shots. She should use her second serve on Henin's forehand. That way she will  prevent her opponent to use the speed of the shot to charge at the net.

Kim should also be aware of Justine's slice serve on both sides.

Moreover, she will have to lead the rallies as quickly as possible by striking on her opponent's forehand, then moving forward on her second shot.

We are looking forward watching these two blockbuster matches...

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