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Astrology vs Reality: How did The Volley’s Wimbledon preview hold up after two rounds?
Not even the stars could have called half of the twists and turns of this grass-court Grand Slam—and we're only halfway through the early rounds.
Published Jun 30, 2022
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With Russian players banned from competing, no ranking points on offer and no Middle Sunday, and with both of the Williams sisters back in the draws, this Wimbledon was already shaping up to be an interesting one.
And that’s without even adding on the astrological curveballs that have been thrown at the competitors: Saturn in retrograde, the first new moon of the summer and the arrival of Cancer Season.
We tried to make sense of it all on the latest edition of The Volley, putting our burgeoning astrology skills to the test with a draw analysis focused on compatible signs and good vibes instead of momentum and results.
But after two rounds, the unpredictable nature of The Championships have tested our resident pseudo-astrologists. Here’s how our divinations have held up:
Prediction: Could the stars have predicted Serena Williams’ surprising return to Centre Court? Because Saturn rules time, its retrograde is marked by blasts from the past and closure.
Verdict: Serena is an air sign whose Libra traits are balance and “harmony”—and that was exactly what did her in as Harmony Tan pulled off the upset in three hours on Centre Court.
Not even the stars have a clue what will happen next for Serena though. With Saturn in retrograde meaning self-reflection and closure, and Cancer Season sending us gravitating back to loved ones—could we have witnessed 40-year-old Serena’s final Wimbledon appearance?
The 23-time Grand Slam champion could not say for sure either.
“That's a question I can't answer,” she said when asked about her future plans. “Like, I don't know… Who knows? Who knows where I'll pop up.”
Prediction: Air signs—and in particular Geminis like Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Iga Swiatek—would dominate the early rounds.
Verdict: You don’t need to be a tennis expert or have a keen third eye to know that this was an obvious one. It might not be the most astrologically favorable time to be a Gemini—in fact, the horoscope says Geminis in particular will experience difficulty this month—but when you’re a top seed and multiple-time Grand Slam champion, you can determine your own fate.
Defending champion Djokovic has navigated his way into the third round in comfortable fashion, dropping one set in his opening match against Kwon Soon-woo and cruising past Thanasi Kokkinakis. Playing on grass for the first time since 2019, Nadal had a more difficult, but no less successful time against Francisco Cerundolo and Ricardas Berankis. And world No. 1 Swiatek soared to a 37th consecutive victory after taking down Jana Fett and Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove.
Prediction: Cancer Season would provide the biggest astrological advantage to water signs during Wimbledon, in particular Scorpio sisters Emma Raducanu and Paula Badosa.
Verdict: The stars were split on this one: No. 4 seed Badosa is through to the third round, while No. 10 Raducanu has bowed out of her home Grand Slam.
The first new moon of the summer provided the cosmic reset that Badosa apparently needed, letting her shake off a first-round upset in Eastbourne at the hands of Jodie Burrage to score wins over Louisa Chirico and Irina Bara. But it had the opposite effect on the 19-year-old Brit, who was stunned on Centre Court by Caroline Garcia in the second round.
Prediction: Following along the theme of water signs, The Volley called for good omens to favor Coco Gauff, a true Pisces.
Verdict: For Gauff, the new moon and Saturn in retrograde brought the reset and closure that the 18-year-old needed after her heartbreaking runner-up finishes at the French Open in singles and doubles.
Coming off a confident semifinal showing in Berlin, the American continued the momentum at Wimbledon against back-to-back Romanian opponents in Elena-Gabriela Ruse and Mihaela Buzarnescu.
As if the stars didn’t favor Gauff enough, her draw has also opened up quite fortuitously—some of the biggest stumbling blocks in her section, like Serena, Karolina Pliskvoa and Sara Sorribes Tormo are already out. Earth sign Amanda Anisimova, the No. 20 seed, awaits in the third round.
Prediction: The first new moon of the summer would favor the risk-taking Aries—with Matteo Berrettini and semifinalist Denis Shapovalov being our most notable representatives of the Fire sign.
Verdict: Sorry to the stars on this one, but wow, this could not have gone more opposite as calamity struck both our Aries, Berrettini and Shapovalov.
For one, last year’s finalist Berrettini didn’t even make it to the full moon on the 28th—that same morning, he announced his withdrawal from the tournament after a positive COVID-19 test result.
“I have no words to describe the extreme disappointment I feel,” he posted on Instagram. “The dream is over for this year, but I will be back stronger.”
At least 2021 semifinalist Shapovalov was able to take the court at all. But after surviving a grueling five-setter against Arthur Rinderknech, he soon bowed out in four to Brandon Nakashima in the second round.
Prediction: Cancer Season and Saturn in retrograde would spell an astrological double whammy for Leos like Stefanos Tsitsipas, who may find themselves feeling “weighed down and disoriented”.
Verdict: When writing this last Friday, as the 23-year-old struggled to close out Benjamin Bonzi at an ATP 250 amid a lackluster grass swing, it didn’t seem like a reach that Tsitsipas might struggle at SW19 too. But since then, Tsitsipas has blown expectations—and predictions—out of the water.
After claiming a confidence-boosting first title on the surface in Mallorca, the Leo has kept the good vibes going at the grass-court Grand Slam. Tsitsipas has improved with every match to see off qualifier Alexander Ritschard and Jordan Thompson, and now, revenge could be written in the stars: he’ll take on Nick Kyrgios, a fellow fire sign Taurus, in the third round after bowing out to the Aussie in Halle two weeks ago.