By Mike McIntyre
As expected the top four of Nadal, Djokovic, Federer and Murray have advanced to the final eight at Wimbledon. If Nada's foot is ready to go I think we'll certainly see another Grand Slam where the top guys are left standing in the semi-finals this weekend.
Nadal (if healthy) should be able to deal with Mardy Fish. Although Fish took out last year's finalist Tomas Berdych in straight sets, he has a daunting 0-5 career head-to-head with the world's number one player.
A positive for Fish is that the pair have not faced each other in nearly three years and I think we can all agree that Mardy has come a long way in that time. He is truly deserving of being the number one ranked American and will move up to a career best of 8th in the world when the new rankings are released next week.
British fans must be content with the performance of their man Andy Murray. He played superbly on Monday in front of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and defeated Richard Gasquet in straight sets. Murray faces third-time Wimbledon quarter-finalist Feliciano Lopez who has been serving great during these championships but just came through a tough five set match victory against Lukasz Kubot. Lopez trailed by two sets but was able to claw his way back into the match and prevail.
Lopez is 0-4 against Murray and has only taken one of nine sets off him in their previous matches. This will be their first encounter on grass and I don't see how Murray will not be able to quickly dispatch his opponent in this one.
Roger Federer just made his 29th straight Grand Slam quarterfinal and appears to also have the upper hand against his next foe in Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Federer leads their career head-to-head by a margin of 4-1, with the only loss being a tough three set affair in Canada back in 2009.
Federer lost his first set of the tournament against Mikhail Youzhny in the round of sixteen before correcting for a 6-7, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 victory that took three hours to complete. A day of rest should put him back to tip-top shape against Tsonga.
Novak Djokovic meanwhile has also been looking quite solid on grass and takes on the surprise of the men's draw this year in 18 year old Bernard Tomic of Australia. Tomic becomes the youngest player to reach the final eight at the All-England Club since a man by the name of Boris Becker back in 1986.
Tomic, who made it through qualifying, had this to say about his improbably run so far here this year:
"I never thought I'd be here the second week, especially in the quarter-finals. What a feeling and what a tournament it's been for me. It's an unbelievable achievement. I've learnt a lot. It's a great honour to do it here in Wimbledon. I'm at a position now where I've never been happier. I'm looking forward to playing on Wednesday."
Djokovic has never faced the young Aussie before which likely benefits Tomic. Still, with only one loss all season long I expect that Djokovic will dispatch his challenger and advance to a meeting with Federer that no one more than he himself is looking forward to with more ambition.
Stay tuned to ProTennisFan for regular updates as the men's draw nears its penultimate match this coming Sunday.