Serbia’s Novak Djokovic plays a practice session ahead of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Sunday, June 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Serbia’s Novak Djokovic plays a practice session ahead of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Sunday, June 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)|Associated Press

Wimbledon 1st Wednesday: Abrams picks men’s 2nd round matches with Djokovic, Edmund, Khachanov, Wawrinka, Anderson, FA2, RBA and more

Matches start at 6 am EDT.

Neal Abrams

Neal Abrams

Men’s Wednesday Second Round Picks

Kyle Edmund over Fernando Verdasco
Both Edmund and Verdasco advanced to the second round with identical 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 first round wins. Verdasco holds a 2-0 lifetime record against the Brit, but they haven’t played on grass yet. Even though Verdasco can play on the surface, I think Edmund is a better grass court player. I like Edmund to come through here.

Novak Djokovic over Denis Kudla
Djokovic produced a very workmanlike first round win over German Philip Kohlschreiber while Kudla took out clay courter Malek Jaziri. Kukla has nothing to hurt Djokovic with and Nole should roll.

Karen Khachanov over Feliciano Lopez
I’m picking the Russian just because he’s much younger than the 37-year-old Spaniard, and if they go five sets I think that will matter. Lopez is clearly playing wonderful tennis, and if he can wrap this match up in three or four, he should win, but my thought is that Khachanov will push this to a fifth set, and then he becomes the favorite.

Stan Wawrinka over Reilly Opelka
Opelka will win a lot of service games with his big booming serve, but Wawrinka is better at every other part of the game, including volleying, moving, and both groundstrokes. Once the points start, Wawrinka will dominate.

Kevin Anderson over Janko Tipsarevic
Anderson rolled in the first round with the authority of a man who has been to the finals before. His straight set win over Pierre-Hugues Herbert was a revelation. Altough Tipsarevic survived a five set battle with Japanese Yoshihito Nishioka, he won’t have the firepower to take out the fourth seed.

Milos Raonic over Robin Haase
Robin Haase looked totally dominant in the first round, but then again, Jozef Kovalik, the man Haase beat, can’t serve like Raonic. The tall Canadian should roll over Haase and I’d be surprised if he lost a set.

Felix Auger-Aliassime over Corentin Moutet
French teenager Corentin Moutet took out Grigor Dimitrov in five sets and has announced himself as a new international star-in-the-making. But FA2 is the real deal, at 18, and should figure out a way to fight past the young Frenchman. Watch this match, because these guys will be playing each other for the next ten years, and the match should be of the very highest quality tennis.

Daniil Medvedev over Alexei Popyrin
Both of these guys beat dirtballers in the first round, which tells us only that they were better grass court players than their opponents. Medvedev is the better of these two players, but Popyrin will push the Russian because of his ability on grass.

Thomas Fabbiano over Ivo Karlovic
Fabbiano has been one of the hottest players on the Tour over the past month, and he shocked the world with his first round upset of Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas. Dr. Ivo is 40-years-old, but his giant serves still come down from a 6’11” perch, and are always very effective, particularly on grass. But the Italian is so hot that by the second set he will have figured out a way to get those giant serves back. Eventually, Fabbiano will figure out a way to dominate this match, and once that happens, that’s all she wrote.

Miomir Kecmanovic over Benoit Paire
These guys have never played, but I love the 19-year-old Serbian. He’s got a big serve and can pretty much do everything on the court. Although Frenchman Paire has greatly picked up his singles game this Spring, I like the kid to pull off this upset.

Roberto Bautista Agut over Steve Darcis
Those who think Spaniard RBA is only a clay courter are going to be surprised, as he should dominate Darcis, a 5’9” Belgian. Darcis got very lucky when he drew Mischa Zverev in the first round. Zverev’s only main draw win this year was when he got a retirement from Nicola Kuhn in the first round of Miami, so Darcis’ win in the first round here over Mischa was no surprise. But RBA is the real deal, and he should roll.

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