Wimbledon 2012 – the matches to watch, day one

Today's highlights include Novak Djokovic v Juan Carlos Ferrero, Maria Sharapova v Anastasia Rodionova and Roger Federer v Albert Ramos

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Novak Djokovic (SRB)(1) v Juan Carlos Ferrero (ESP)

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The defending champion has an intriguing opener against the Spanish former world number one. Ferrero may be a veteran, but his experience of the sport and aggressive playing style may prove problematic for the number one seed who was recently denied an illusive Grand Slam collection when he suffered defeat to Rafael Nadal in the French Open final. But the Serb has been on blistering form this year with many naming him the top challenger for the Wimbledon title. Few will be putting their money on Ferrero toppling the 2011 winner but expect him to at least offer a challenge. The pair open proceedings on Centre Court at 1:00pm.

Maria Sharapova (RUS)(1) v Anastasia Rodionova (AUS)

The Russian number one seed begins Wimbledon in top form, having beaten Sara Errani to win her first French Open at the start of June. Rodionova, a feisty Australian baseliner will be expected to put up a fight, but with Sharapova having won their previous three meets, an upset looks unlikely. The match is scheduled to take place second on Centre Court.

Janko Tipsarevic (SRB)(8) v David Nalbandian (ARG)

The Serbian number two and the unseeded Argentine will meet for the third time this year and, with each securing a win over the other, Tipsarevic’s seeding will do little to secure him victory. Janko has had a solid year, reaching the semifinals in Madrid and Marseille, whilst Nalbandian is recovering from an embarrassing disqualification in the Queens final, when a burst of rage saw him kick an advertising board into a line judge. Expect a high-quality thriller when this duel opens action on No.1 Court at 1:00pm.

Roger Federer (SUI)(3) v Albert Ramos (ESP)

Although a six-time winner, Federer is no longer invincible on grass and at 30, many are wondering how much longer he will continue to play. But the Swiss playing at his peak at Wimbledon is better than anyone else and his opponent, 24-year-old Albert Ramos, has a 18-17 win-loss record for the season so far and is yet to win his maiden title on tour. The number three seed is surprisingly relegated to the second match on No.1 Court for his first meeting against the Spaniard and, with Ramos a certain underdog, several eyebrows will be raised if the mighty Fed fails to progress in straight sets.

Jelena Jankovic (SRB)(18) v Kim Clijsters (BEL)

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One glance at the seedings and this match promises little excitement, but take into account that both players are former number ones and the draw immediately becomes one to watch. This is Clijsters’ final Wimbledon before she takes retirement later this year, and she holds a 7-1 lead in her head-to-head against Jankovic, but having played few matches this year she is unseeded at Wimbledon for the first time in 12 years. That said, it would be foolish to ever write-off the Belgian and many will be willing her to progress beyond the first round in her SW19 swansong. The pair are third to play on No.1 Court.