Wimbledon set for first Ukraine-Belarus clash of this year’s tournament
Elina Svitolina and Victoria Azarenka go head to head on Court One as Wimbledon hosts scheduled play on the middle Sunday for just the second year.
Novak Djokovic and Iga Swiatek headline the action on Centre Court as the singles competitions continue without the presence of any Britons.
Here, the PA news agency takes a look at day seven’s action.
Svitolina set for Azarenka battle
Elina Svitolina had planned to watch Harry Styles in Vienna this weekend. Instead, the Ukrainian will once again be under the spotlight for taking on a player from Belarus.
Svitolina beat two Russian players at the French Open before falling to Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka in the quarter-finals. But she was booed in Paris for sticking to the Ukrainian position of not shaking hands with opponents from the two countries due to the ongoing war.
On Sunday, she faces Victoria Azarenka in the first Wimbledon match between someone from Ukraine and one from either Russia and Belarus since the war started.
Svitolina is well aware of the significance of the clash, saying: “A lot of Ukrainians will be watching, will be supporting me. I will go out there and put the fighting spirit on and just really fight for every single point.”
Middle Sunday action
For just the second time in its long history, Wimbledon will host scheduled action on the middle Sunday.
Up until last year it was always a day of rest, leading to ‘Manic Monday’ when all 16 fourth-round matches were played on one day.
This year’s play will be particularly welcome as the tournament is still playing catch up from indifferent weather in the first week.
There are some third-round matches still to be completed while a host of doubles and junior matches were cancelled on Saturday.
Match of the day
Hubert Hurkacz is the man who ended Roger Federer’s Wimbledon career when he won their quarter-final in 2021.
The Pole was then beaten by Matteo Berrettini in the semi-final, but he gets the chance to take down another big gun when he faces Novak Djokovic.
The Serbian is seemingly invincible on Centre Court so Hurkacz is going to have to channel that performance against Federer if he has any hope of prevailing and ending Djokovic’s reign.
Order of play
Andrey Rublev v Alexander Bublik
Iga Swiatek v Belinda Bencic
Hubert Hurkacz v Novak Djokovic
Jessica Pegula v Lesia Tsurenko
Jannick Sinner v Daniel Galan
Victoria Azarenka v Elina Svitolina
Early thunderstorms will give way to more settled conditions