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Murray tops Wimbledon seedings

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 28-06-2017 skysports.com

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Defending champion Andy Murray will head to Wimbledon as the top seed with Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal making up the top four. 

The Scot claimed a memorable second title at the All England Club last year by beating Milos Raonic but he faces an uphill battle for Grand Slam title number four after a 2017 that has seen him battling form and fitness concerns.

The world No 1, who pulled out of a warm-up at Hurlingham on Tuesday, has just one title to his name this year and suffered a first round exit when he was beaten at Queens by world No 90 Jordan Thompson, his ninth defeat of the season so far.

But Murray will call on a formidable record at Wimbledon having reached at least the quarter-final stage in each of the last nine years, and with he will hope the form he showed in reaching the French Open semi-final continues for this year's Championships.

The draw takes place on Friday and with Djokovic, Federer and Nadal rounding out the top four men's single seeds. Wednesday's announcement means the four biggest names in the game will be kept apart until the last four.

Nadal and Federer are the form horses this year, both men having won a Grand Slam, two Masters titles and a 500 event so far and it is the Swiss maestro who is the favourite with the bookmakers.

Having climbed back up to fifth in the world, Federer is seeded third on the back of his grass court record. A ninth Halle title of his career on Sunday means the 35-year-old's remarkable year continues and a first Wimbledon title since 2012 is a realistic ambition.

Federer ended a wait of more than four years to claim his 18th Grand Slam at the Australian Open, beating Nadal in the final. The Swiss star has won all three of their meetings this year but with Federer taking the clay-court swing off, Nadal won a 10th French Open title to claim his fourth title of the year, He currently tops the Race to London standings as a result.

Nadal heads to Wimbledon seeded fourth but the Spaniard withdrew from Queens to rest after his arduous campaign on the red dirt. His bid for a 16th Grand Slam and third Wimbledon title will depend on how his knees react to playing on the lawns of SW19.

Djokovic's struggles have been deeper than Murray's this year. The Serb has dropped to fourth in the world rankings since he claimed his last Grand Slam in Paris more than a year ago but his three Wimbledon titles in the last six years mean he is seeded second.

That Paris title in 2016 made him the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to hold all four Grand Slams at the same time but his form since has seen him claim just two titles, with his only 2017 trophy coming in Doha where he beat Murray in the final.

The 30-year-old is a 12-time Grand Slam champion but a second-round defeat to Denis Istomin at the Australian Open and a straight sets surrender to Dominic Thiem at Roland Garros have contributed to a total of seven defeats this year.

After dispensing with his entire coaching staff before the Rome Masters, Djokovic will link up again with Andre Agassi and will hope, 25 years after the American's Wimbledon fairytale, some of Agassi's magic rubs off on him as he attempts to win a fourth Wimbledon.

World No 3 and three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka is seeded fifth having only reached two Wimbledon quarter-finals while last year's runner-up Raonic is seeded sixth.

In the women's singles, world No 1 Angelique Kerber will be looking to go one better than last year where she was beaten by Serena Williams in the final.

Kerber tops the seedings despite a patchy run of form and she is followed by Simona Halep, Karolina Pliskova and Elina Svitolina.

Svitolina makes the top four in the absence of Serena Williams who misses the tournament as she is pregnant with her first child.

Britain's hope of a first female Grand Slam winner since Virginia Wade at Wimbledon in 1977 is Johanna Konta and she will be seeded sixth after a year in which she has already reached three finals and won two titles.

However, Konta has only ever won one match in the main draw at Wimbledon and will be hoping to improve on that record when this year's event gets underway on Monday.

Two-time champion Petra Kvitova will be welcomed onto the grounds after winning the Eastbourne title at the weekend in only her second tournament back after recovering from a serious hand injury suffered when an intruder attacked her at her home.

The 2011 and 2014 champion is seeded 11th with unlikely French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko seeded 13th.

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