It’s that time of year again, when the strawberries and cream suddenly take a sharp increase in price, as the best of the best gather in SW19 for Wimbledon.
But here we will hopefully be able to earn some pennies back, to pay for our Pimm’s and Strawberries! (Just kidding, I’m Northern, I don’t drink Pimm’s..)
First up is the men’s singles, and Britain’s hopes lie on the broad shoulders of Andy Murray, who enters the tournament with arguably his best chance yet.
He managed to break his major voodoo when landing the US Open in September last year, and has since gone from strength to strength.
He sat out of the French Open, due to a back injury and this could prove sensible, as it allows him to arrive in peak condition.
He has reached the final of the last three Grand Slam events he has appeared in, and he looks set to make it a fourth next month.
He has importantly avoided the warm favourite Novak Djokovic, and should be able to navigate his way through to meet the Serbian and aim to become to first Briton to land the prize since Fred Perry.
However the nation’s hope cautiously raise each year, with bitter disappointment seeming inevitable, and this year it could happen once more, as Djokovic looks an extremely strong favourite to regain the Wimbledon crown he won in 2011.
Although Novak arrives at the tournament on the back of a roller-coaster five-set defeat by Rafa Nadal at Roland Garros, in the semi-final of the one major that has eluded the 26 year-old his entire career, he has enough mental fortitude to put it behind him.
His mental resilience has always been a major positive, and there is no real need for punters to put much emphasis on his recent clay form.
He is more than 3000 points clear than the second placed Andy Murray, and should be able to prove his class once more, back on grass.
His side of the draw is relatively simple compared to Murray, Federer and Nadal who are all drawn on the same side.
Djokovic will hypothetically meet Tomas Berdych in the quarter-final, and then David Ferrer in the semi-final. Both great players in their own right, but a much simpler task than either Murray, Federer or Nadal.
At odds of 5/4, he is a little on the skinny side, however if you take a chance on Andy Murray to reach the final, alongside Novak Djokovic, the price is currently 7/3 on Betfair.
Nadal and Federer both warrant big respect, yet I feel they will feel slightly short against Murray, and they are both short odds to land their quarter’s.
So if we look elsewhere, we can find extreme value in the shape of Juan Martin del Potro.
The 6 foot 6 giant, is the only other man apart from the big four (Djokovic, Murray, Nadal, Federer), to land a Grand Slam title since 2005, when he landed the 2009 US Open.
Persistent injury troubles had initially brought a halt to del Potro’s blossoming career, but he bounced back last year when pushing Federer all the way in the Olympic semi-final, at SW19.
He has form at Wimbledon, and arrives in high hopes of a big performance. He has the ability to worry the big quartet on his day, and if he turns up, his current 55/1 will look massive.
Yet to ensure we have a better chance of making a profit, take a chance of del Potro to win his quarter at 100/30 with Coral.
His main competitor is David Ferrer, who is the current favourite, but if the Argentine’s troublesome wrist holds up, he has more than enough in the locker than to take down Ferrer.
Serena Williams looks nailed on to land the Ladies prize at SW19, but at odds of 4/9, there is no value in having a single on her.
So we look elsewhere, and number two seed Victoria Azarenka fits the bill as a decent value bet to reach the final.
The Belarusian is extremely consistent at Wimbledon, and has reached the semi-final in the last two years.
She lost to the eventual winner both times, yet she doesn’t meet Serena Williams until the final this year, so if she is to continue her trait, the 9/4 for her without Serena Williams looks much better value than the 5/4 for Sharapova.
2 points win double: Djokovic & S.Williams (Outright) @ 2.25/1 (youwin)
1 point: Djokovic v Murray final @ 7/3 (Betfair)
0.5 points e.w: Del Potro @ 55/1 (youwin)
2 points: del Potro to win his quarter @ 100/30 (Coral)
2 points: Victoria Azarenka (w/o Serena) @ 9/4 (youwin)