Favoritism In The 2011 Wimbledon Men's Semis


Do you have a passing interest in tennis? No? Oh, then don't read this.

What's that, you do? Aright, cool. Then follow me after the jump, and I'll tell you who to root for in the Wimbledon men's semi-finals (based on petty biases and arbitrary likes, of course).

Before we do that, let's have a quick moment of silence for departed legend Roger Federer.

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Aright, let's go.

4) Rafael Nadal, Spain (1-seed)

Why root for? If you like people who exaggerate injuries, used to wear capris and might be werewolves, then do I have the player for you. In all seriousness, if you're a fan of greatness, this is probably your dude. Nadal is the defending champ and winner of two of the last three Wimbledon titles. You wanna roll with the best, go right ahead.

Why root against? He took out the last American player in the tournament, Minnesota's own Mardy Fish, in a four-set quarterfinal match. Everybody was like "...man."

- Plus he's left-handed.

3) Novak Djokovic, Serbia (2-seed)

Why root for? Again, to play the greatness card... if you're looking for a quality player who isn't decisively at the top, then the Djoker could be the pick. He's only lost once in 2011, and that was to the late Roger Federer in the French Open semi-finals. Other than that? Pretty spotless.

Why root against? While he's not the favorite, he's pretty damn close.

2) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, French (12-seed)

Why root for? As a die-hard Federer fan, even I couldn't be mad with the way Tsonga took out the king in the quarterfinals. After dropping the first two sets, Tsonga rallied back to take the final three sets in dominating fashion. Tennis is one of the softest professional sports we have, but it was hard to watch the match and not feel like Tsonga was essentially beating Federer to death with his racket as the match progressed. In the final game of the match, Federer looked so aloof and disappointed, it was as if he was practicing against no one. Tsonga was a force.

- Oh, and after the match, he did this...

- While it certainly doesn't stack up with some of the NFL's finest celebrations, you've gotta remember, in tennis, we usually just get Nadal collapsing to the ground like he just saved the world with his victory. Pretty much always sucks.

- Bottom line: Tsonga is the lowest-seeded player. If you like underdogs, then this is the pick.

Why root against? After the Fed match, he did that annoying French guy thing that most women swoon for:

"I was feeling really strong because I never -- how you say that? -- panic. I was, all the time, really focused," Tsonga said. "I was not scared on big points."

"Julia, I am -- how do you say? -- in love with you."

I'm probably reaching with that one.

1) Andy Murray, Great Britan (4-seed)

Why root for? He's from Great Britain, and they're facing a 75-year drought at Wimbledon. It's pretty sad and pathetic. But Murray is pretty damn nice. Peep what he said after Prince William and Kate Middleton watched him play from the Royal Box at Centre Court.

"If I'd known they were coming, I would have shaved," a smiling Murray said of his meeting with the newlyweds after the match . "I was thinking to myself as I came off I was sweaty and very hairy. I said to them, 'I'm sorry, I'm a bit sweaty."

Not just sweaty, but also hairy.

Why root against? Rooting for Andy Murray is like rooting for the Chicago Cubs. It's nice and fun and it won't upset fans of other parties, but it ultimately results in sorrow. Murray has the "always the bridesmaid, never the bride" thing going, as he's appeared in the semi-finals of all four grand slams without ever actually winning any of them. He's 0-3 in grand slam finals.

Of course, that's always eligible to change. Do you want to be in his corner when it does?

Bobby Loesch is the associate editor of the Chicago sports blog Tremendous Upside Potential and a daily contributor to SB Nation Chicago. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy.

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