Wednesday 1 August 2012

Olympics Tennis 2012 - Djokovic vs Hewitt (3rd round) Preview

The match features the battle of former World no.1s and former Wimbledon champions (Djokovic :2011, Hewitt: 2002). This is Hewitt's last Olympics, and he must be eager to go all the way to the medal podium, but first he will have to get past world no.2 and 2011 Wimbledon and 2008 Beijing Bronze medallist, Novak Djokovic.

Description Djokovic Hewitt
Match record this year 43-7 10-6
H2H    5    1
H2H on grass    3    0

The pair has met 6 times, with Djokovic winning last 5 meetings. 2 of their 3 meetings on grass have come on the same lawns of Wimbledon, but the result of all 3 meetings has been the same with Djokovic winning all three at the expense of just 2 sets. The pair's latest encounter at Australian Open 2012 also went to 4 sets.

Hewitt beat Cilic to set up a match against world no. 2 Djokovic. Djokovic was impressive in his second round showing as well, defeating Roddick in straight sets, blazing 14 aces past the 3 time Wimbledon runner-up.

Let us have a look at the performance of the players in numbers in their first 2 matches.

Description Djokovic Hewitt
Aces 13 5
First Serve 66% 61%
Points won on first serve 82% 78%
Points won on second serve 59% 65%
Receiving points won on first serve 36% 29%
Receiving points won on second serve 58% 48%
Break points 64% 36%
Total winners 34 21
Unforced errors 15 15
Net points won 72% 62%

Djokovic has been better than Hewitt in almost all departments, having more 1st serves in and winning more points behind his first serve. However, Hewitt has been having strong 2nd serve as compared to Djokovic. The difference will lie in the return game. Djokovic has won 7% more points while returning the first serve and 10% more points while returning the second serve as compared to his opponent in the round of 16. what is more striking is that both Hewit and Djokovic have same average unforced errors, however Djokivc leads Hewitt in the winners department by +13. It will all come down to whether Hewit's serve will hold or not and how good he will be in his movement.

Another important point to note is that Djokovic has faced only 2 break points in his last 2 matches, he saved one but was broken on the other. Hewitt, though has also been broken just once, but he faced 6 break points and saved 5 of them. Hewitt won't like to give Djokovic a sniff on that many break points.

Hewitt is nearing his retirement, and with the wonderful career he had before injuries came to halt his progress, he deserves a final run. Djokovic should take the match in straight sets, but I would love to see Hewitt make one final run to the medal podium.

Pick: Djokovic in straight sets


  1. Like the analysis. Also appreciate that while you are rooting for Hewitt, it doesn't influence your pick of who will win.

  2. Thanks nehmeth for the appreciation :)
    I do hope Hewitt wins, but Djokovic will be too strong for him, unless he has a bad day or Hewitt plays like his former self.