Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs. Ryan Harrison (USA)
I can tell you that I am really excited to watch this match. Harrison comes in with a nice win over Lu in the first round and he had a great run in the warm-up tournament last week where he reached the semis. He's feeling confident and the IMG Academy Bollettieri tennis program Tennis alum knows he is in for a big-time battle in this match. To me, this match comes down to Harrison's mental focus. He's got the weapons to compete with Djokovic, but can he keep his composure throughout the entire match? If he does that, this will be a great match. We will all be rooting for Ryan in this one!
Nick's Pick - Because of Djokovic's experience, you have to give him the edge, but don't be surprised if Ryan gives him a real test here!!
Xavier Malisse (BEL) vs. Gilles Simon (FRA)
Like the Harrison/Djokovic match, this is also going to come down to the mental preparation for Malisse. He's confident in where his game is right now, but Simon is very tough. He's got a good serve and a great backhand and he will make Malisse work for every point. I think Malisse has to come in some and try to take Simon out of his comfort zone. I liked the way X looked in his first-round win and he is certainly capable of pulling off this upset - he just needs to remain mentally focused!
Nick's Pick - Giving a slight edge to Simon, but Malisse could pull of the upset.
Kei Nishikori (JPN) vs. Florent Serra (FRA)
It had been a while since Kei took the court in an ATP-level match, but he looked confident as ever in his first-round victory. He's moving well, he can hit any shot in the book and he competes very hard. He spent the last few weeks at the Academy training and I don't have to say much to Kei. Just a few words here and there and then watch the magician go to work. If you haven't had a chance to watch him play, it is truly a thing of beauty the way he can glide across the court. Serra is coming off a five-set win in the first round and is looking to reach the third round of a Grand Slam for only the second time in his career. I know Kei hasn't played much as of late, but he's got the goods to take down Serra.
Nick's Picks - I look for Kei to win in three, maybe four sets.
Sam Querrey (USA) vs. Milos Raonic (CAN)
This should be a really interesting match. You've got two giants in the game going at it. Querrey hasn't played as well over the last year or so as he was a few years back, but he can still hang with the best. Both men have big serves, excellent forehand and solid two-handed backhands. Raonic probably moves a bit better and he is definitely in better form right now than Querrey. I don't think there will be a ton of service breaks in this match, and at right now I have to give the edge to Raonic.
Nick's Picks - Going with Raonic here. I think Querrey can test him, but the edge is certainly with the Canadian.
Heather Watson (GBR) vs. Jamie Lee Hampton (USA)
There is a ton of talk about Heather over here, and if she wins this match the British press are going to go nuts! Watson has been training at IMG Academy since she was 12 years old and you will not meet a better person. She competes hard and is always looking to improve. Her game has come a long way over the years and she is really attacking her opponents now and she is playing with tons of confidence. For Heather, that's extremely important. She cannot sit back and hope for her opponents to miss. She needs to take it to them and she has the tools to do that. Hampton picked up a nice win over Hantuchova in the opening round, but this is her first appearance at Wimbledon and this will be a much more watched match.
Nick's Pick - Heather needs to play the way she did in the first round and if she does, I think she wins in two tough sets.
Sabine Lisicki (GER) vs. Bojana Jovanovski (SRB)
Jovanovski, the 20-year old Serbian, is making her third appearance at Wimbledon and is looking to reach the third round for the first time in her career. It would also be the first time she's been to the third round of any Grand Slam event. Her opponent, Lisicki, reached the semis here last year and loves playing on the grass. Sabine has been training at IMG Academy for many years and she came back last week to work with Chip Brooks and myself and she said that made a big difference in her game. She won easily in the opening round and she needs a similar performance to get by Jovanovski. Sabine has to defend a lot of points from last year, but she needs to forget about that and just focus on one match at a time. When she is playing well and she's confident, she can beat anyone. She has the big groundstrokes and her serve is one of the best, but she's got to keep the ball in play.
Nick's Pick - Going with Sabine, but she needs to play her game and not let Jovanovski get into a rhythm.
Serena Williams (USA) vs. Melinda Czink (HUN)
I was happy to see Serena return to the winner's circle after what happened at Roland Garros. She looked much better on the grass, but I don't think she was 100% happy about how she played. No matter, she won and that's all that counts. The 29-year old Czink is no push-over. She's a veteran lefty who has been to the third round here once before. I don't think she will be able to hurt Serena, but if Serena starts to make mistakes and the balls are flying all over the court then who knows what will happen.
Nick's Picks - I'm looking for Serena to start finding her groove in this match. This is on her racket and she knows it. Serena in 2 sets.
Mirjana Lucic (CRO) vs. Marion Bartoli (FRA)
Lucic trains at IMG Academy when she is in town and I always enjoy working with her. She works as hard as anyone I've ever seen and even though she's not as young as some of the other girls on the tour, she can outwork them. She hits the ball hard and flat, her serve is solid and she moves well. This will not be an easy match for Bartoli. Lucic will make her work for every single point, and even though she's been a finalist here before she is going to have to play great to win this match. The one question I have for Lucic is will she have enough to take out Bartoli? The Frenchwoman has the an odd service motion and hits with two-hands from both sides and moves surprisingly well. This should be a fun one to watch.
Nick's Picks - I give a slight edge to Bartoli, but don't be surprised if Lucic pulls off an upset!