Wimbledon 2015 Draw: Murray Faces Kukushkin, Djokovic & Wawrinka in Same Half

Andy Murray will get his campaign for a second Wimbledon title off with a tricky tie against 27-year-old Mikhail Kukushkin from Kazakhstan.

The world No. 58 took a set off two-time winner Rafael Nadal in the third round of last year’s championship, hitting nine less winners to concede defeat in four sets.

Murray has nonetheless won all two of his previous meetings with the Kazakh, both coming in 2012, notably their last-16 duel at the 2012 Australian Open, where Murray won the first two sets 6-1 6-1 and was 1-0 ahead in the third before Kukushkin withdrew because of injury.

The 2013 champion could face Italian Andres Seppi in the round of 32, France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the fourth round, Nadal or his fellow Spaniard David Ferrer in the quarter-finals, 17-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer in the semis, with a potential showdown with Djokovic- should both longtime rivals advance thus far- awaiting tennis fans on 12 July.

Top seed Novak Djokovic gets the defense of his Wimbledon title underway with a first round tie with world number 33 Philipp Kohlschreiber on Monday, and faces a potential second round clash with veteran Australian, Lleyton Hewitt.

Novak Djokovic Relishes Wimbledon 2014 Success. Image: AELTC.
Novak Djokovic Relishes Wimbledon 2014 Success. Image: AELTC.

The Serb, who has not taken part in any competitive grass-court preparatory tournament before his opening game at Centre Court, is in the same half of the draw as Swiss fourth seed Stan Wawrinka, who beat him in the final of the French Open earlier this month.

Nadal comes into the third Grand Slam of 2015 on the heels of a difficult campaign, but will have to do more against Brazilian Thomaz Belucci in the first round at the All England Club.

Federer begins his bid for a record eighth Wimbledon title against Bosnian Damir Dzumhur.

Top seed, Serena Williams, could face older sibling, Venus, in the last 16, having being fielded in the top half of the women’s draw fielding contenders; Maria Sharapova and Lucie Safarova, as well as Ana Ivanovic.

Fourth seed Maria Sharapova faces home favourite Johanna Konta and Serena will be up against Russia’s Margarita Gasparyan.

Defending champion Petra Kvitova pulled out of the Aegon International earlier in the week because of illness, but will hope to be equal to the task against No. 79-ranked Dutch Kiki Bertens.

Fellow Czech Safarova, who reached her maiden Grand Slam title at Roland Garros, faces USA’s Allison Riske, a semi-finalist at the Aegon Nottingham Open also this month.

The tournament gets underway on Sunday, 28 June.