For the first time since 2007, men’s tennis’s Big Three have all reached the semifinals at Wimbledon and few would bet against Novak Djokovic going at least a step further on Friday.
On Wednesday, the Serbian demolished number 21 seed David Goffin in straight sets in the quarterfinals to set up a semifinal against 23rd-seeded Bautista Agut,
Goffin had defeated Djokovic in their last two meetings and went a break up in the first set, before the defending champion quickly rediscovered his mojo to take the match 6-4, 6-0, 6-2.
While most of the attention has been focused on the match between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, the world number one has looked imperious in his march towards the last four.
Between them, Djokovic, Nadal and Federer have won the last 10 Grand Slam titles and on current form it’s hard to see them not extending the run to 11 on Sunday.
The former, who has accounted for three of those 10 titles, is looking for a fifth Wimbledon crown and a 16th overall Grand Slam triumph. The Serb has dropped just one set so far—against Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz in the third round—and feels he’s close to the peak of his powers.
“The ball all of a sudden looks and seems larger than it actually is,” he said after his dismantling of Goffin, as reported by The Guardian. “It’s a good feeling, I must say.”
For Bautista Agut, the circumstances couldn’t be more different. The Spaniard beat number 26 seed Guido Pella 7-5, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 on Wednesday to reach a first ever career semifinal.
Ironically, progressing in the tournament presents the Spaniard with a logistical nightmare. The 31-year-old was scheduled to be in Ibiza, Spain, to celebrate his bachelor party but has had to rearrange it.
Six of his friends who had already flown to the Balearic isle will now travel to London to watch the Spaniard in action instead.
“I had planned to be in Ibiza right now,” he said in his post-match press conference. “We had everything organised already. Well, it feels better to be here in London.”
Here’s all you need to know ahead of Friday.
Semifinals start time
The match between Djokovic and Bautista Agut is the first of the two men’s semifinals, and it begins at 1 p.m. local time (8 a.m. ET), before Roger Federer takes on Rafael Nadal.
The tournament is broadcast exclusively across ESPN, with coverage running from 8 a.m. ET until 2 p.m. on Friday.
Fans can watch the action online via the WatchESPN app and on ESPN.com.
According to Oddschecker, Novak Djokovic is a 2/17 favorite to win his semifinal, while Roberto Bautista Agut is a 79/10 outsider.
In terms of winning the tournament, the Serbian is 7/10 to defend his title, followed by Rafael Nadal at 16/5 and Roger Federer at 4/1. Bautista-Agut, meanwhile, is a 40/1 outsider.