REACHING a fifth consecutive Wimbledon semi-final didn’t come as a surprise, yet not many would have predicted Andy Murray would need to rally from two sets down against Fernando Verdasco. He’s a stand-out 2/1 for the tournament with Coral after his epic three hour and 23 minute victory set up a meeting with Poland’s 6ft 8in giant Jerzy Janowicz.
Janowicz, available at 16/1 with Coral for the championship, used all his height to send down 30 aces and 58 winners during his quarter-final with compatriot Lukasz Kubot. He’s the first Polish men’s grand slam semi-finalist with the pressure only building at each stage for the 22-year-old.
Having seen his closest rivals Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga eliminated from his side of the draw it was important for Murray to have a proper workout as the climax of the tournament gets ever nearer. Losing the first two sets might have been too much, but his fightback demonstrates that the Brit is in the right mental place for his next challenge.
Today’s clash will be the third occasion the two have met, although the first time on grass. It’s one victory apiece with Janowicz winning the most recent clash last year, but Murray took the only best of five contest in straight sets.
Murray’s 1/6 with Coral to go through, but I’d rather have the 5/2 with the same firm for a four sets win as Janowicz has enough to get one on the board.
I expect the first set to be tight as it’ll take Murray a bit of time to get his measure of the big serve and I can see the opener being decided by a tie-break. With that in mind, I’d also recommend buying total games in the first set at 10.75 with Sporting Index.
On the other side of the draw the world No1 Novak Djokovic came through his biggest test of the tournament with a straight sets win over Tomas Berdych to secure a 13th consecutive grand slam semi-final. Berdych broke the Serbian twice in the second set before he recovered to take the decisive set.
He faces Juan Martin Del Potro for a place in the final on Sunday. The Argentinean had a scare in only the fifth point of his match with David Ferrer when suffering a nasty fall that aggravated his injury picked up against Grega Zemlja in the third round.
Ferrer didn’t have the firepower to test Del Potro and Djokovic won’t afford him the same easy ride. “Magic pills” were enough to get Del Potro through his quarter-final, but he’ll need more than that to derail the Djokovic juggernaut.
A repeat of Djokovic’s 3-0 win in the last round is available at 10/11 with Coral and I’d take that price considering he leads the head-to-head battle 8-3.
Andy Murray 3-1 at 5/2 with Coral
Buy total games in first set at 10.75 with Sporting Index
Novak Djokovic to win 3-0 at 10/11 with Coral