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The Volley: Can the stars forecast uncertain Wimbledon?
In what could be the strangest Championships of recent memory, a check of player horoscopes may not only provide much-needed insight but also tip big things for past stars.
Published Jun 26, 2022
WATCH: Was Serena Williams' surprising return to action the "blast from the past" foretold by Saturn's retrograde?
Look, we’re not scientists. Sometimes one must look to the stars to make a proper Grand Slam prediction, and that’s exactly what we’ve done in the aftermath of the 2022 Wimbledon draw. There may not be any ranking points on offer or Russian/Belarusians in the field, but Cancer season nonetheless remains in full swing. Might the retrograded Saturn take Serena Williams to a 24th Grand Slam title? Our newly minted astrology experts weigh in.
David Kane: Irish girl band B*Witched once blamed it on the weatherman, but not even the Centre Court roof can keep our eyes off the stars as we take an astrological approach to this 2022 Wimbledon draw. Much as my Gemini moon is of two minds about how accurate this may be, my Scorpio sun is determined to go full steam ahead. (Did I get any of that right?) How are the vibes as the All England Club prepares to mount its 135th Championships?
This is a strange Wimbledon, one that will apparently fall in the midst of an interesting astrological moment. The third major of 2022 kicks off the summer British calendar and runs from June 27 to July 10, 2022—meaning that the fortnight will overlap with Cancer Season (June 21 to July 22). Famously represented by the crab, Cancer Season is believed to be one of the happiest seasons of the Zodiac calendar, marked by a gravitation back toward loved ones.
Meanwhile, Saturn has been in retrograde since June 4th and will stay that way until the fall. With the backward motion of this ringed planet comes a change in perspective—but not everyone will be poised to see things clearly. Because Saturn rules time, it’s also a period marked by blasts from the past and closure. Could the stars have predicted Serena Williams’ surprising return to Centre Court?
DK: Not even Nostradamus could have predicted Serena’s surprise return to action after missing nearly 12 months to the day of her last Wimbledon appearance, one that ended under a brutal injury cloud and retirement in the opening round. Still, there’s something eerily salient about Saturn’s need for closure: at 40 years old, few see Williams playing much longer, and if one imagines her taking a final bow anywhere, her Libra sense of justice would surely dictate it be where she captured an astounding seven Wimbledon crowns.
She exuded sign-appropriate balance and harmony through two doubles matches with Virgo Ons Jabeur, and in a field full of relatively inexperienced contenders, perhaps the stars are pointing towards that elusive 24th major title.
To make it happen, she’ll likely have to conquer fellow Air sign and world No. 1 Iga Swiatek in the semifinals—as it turns out, many of the most likely to succeed at SW19 this year share one Air sign in particular…
SL: During our grueling R&D phase, we deduced that there are some notable top-seeded Geminis in our midst: not only Swiatek, but also both Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. Known to be adaptable, extroverted and clever, Geminis are often driven by a sense of curiosity and a level of impatience that probably translates well into the hard work and discipline required to play professional tennis. The sign’s duality doesn’t mean Geminis are two-faced, but that they’re multifaceted and effective at juggling a variety of on-and-off-court interests—which is a trait that Djokovic, Nadal and Swiatek certainly have in common.
None of them played an official warm-up tournament in the lead-up to Wimbledon, and that might be because they’re all following their Gemini instincts: Saturn in retrograde is marked by a period of low motivation and a time to slow down for Geminis.
DK: …don’t forget the “adorably erratic” (Allure’s words, not mine) Gemini, one Jelena Ostapenko, who is looking to defend her Eastbourne title and arrive at the All England Club with major momentum of her own. Between her and Roland Garros champs Swiatek and Nadal, winning streaks ahead of Wimbledon is looking like a Gemini thing.
While airy Geminis look best on paper, Water signs may have the biggest astrological advantage during Cancer Season, which is good news for British fans and their favorite Scorpio sister, Emma Raducanu. The reigning US Open champ may not be able to defend her ranking points due to the ATP and WTA’s moratorium in response to the Russian and Belarusian ban, but—provided the side injury she picked up in Nottingham isn’t too serious—that may ease the pressure as she makes a long-awaited return to her home major.
Fortune also favors No. 4-seeded Scorpio Paula Badosa as she aims to shake off an injury-induced early exit from Paris and a shock loss to Briton Jodie Burrage in Eastbourne. Badosa proved she could translate her clay-court game to grass in 2021 when she reached the second week and used Wimbledon as a launchpad to a successful fall swing that helped her win Indian Wells and secure a late berth to the WTA Finals.
As this is a time for “action and reward,” are there any major upheavals that our stars (both literally and figuratively) should watch out for as the fortnight unfolds?
SL: Wimbledon kicks off on Monday, June 27, and right away the moon will have something to say about what goes on between the lines. The first new moon of the summer will take place on Tuesday night, bringing with it a cosmic vibe shift (that’s the scientific term for it, right?) marked by the release of old energies, high emotions and the start of something new. Being that it’s happening in Cancer, an intuitive Water sign that rules “the home”—think, our “inner world” including friends, home and personal life—this could be a deep one.
The new moon means a clean slate, which is exactly what the top half of the men's draw (Djokovic, Casper Ruud and Carlos Alcaraz) and the bottom half of the women’s draw (Raducanu, Jabeur and No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit) will be looking for if and when they hit the courts on Wednesday.
The risk-taking Aries among us are well poised to take advantage of this particular astrological curve ball, with last year’s finalist Matteo Berrettini and semifinalist Denis Shapovalov being our most notable representatives of the Fire sign.
DK: All this is smacking of Black Wednesday realness, which also took place on the third day of the Wimbledon Championships in 2013, and infamously witnessed a cataclysmic mix of upsets and retirements. But that tournament ended with an Andy Murray triumph, so I suppose all’s well that ends well for the Brits following along.
While Berrettini may benefit from the new moon—and the promise of both “career progression and a shift in perspective”—it isn’t looking good for Leos like Stefanos Tsitsipas, who may find themselves feeling “weighed down and disoriented” from Saturn in retrograde. And Tsitsipas already needed all the help he could get after a disappointing defeats to Holger Rune at Roland Garros and Nick Kyrgios in Halle. While he’s into his first career grass final in Mallorca, a rematch with Tauran Kyrgios awaits him at Wimbledon. Notably, both are Fire signs but Kyrgios, like Alcaraz, will be left to “review long-term goals”—a decidedly out-of-step characteristic for the enigmatic Aussie, who is seemingly loath to live outside the present.
We’ve typically looked to past results to predict future success, and given that strategy’s middling efficiency, I think we can sit this one out and let the stars pick a winner this Wimbledon. From our sample size, they came up with two clear-cut champions:
SL: Being that this is the Cancer Season Slam, I have to go with a Water sign here, and the stars are pointing to Coco Gauff as this year’s Wimbledon ladies champion. The 18-year-old is a Pisces, a sign known for being empathetic and emotionally aware, intuitive and gracious—all traits that the American embodies. She is coming off of a confident showing with a semifinal in Berlin, effectively shaking off any lingering disappointment from her runner-up finishes in both singles and doubles at Roland Garros.
For Pisces, Saturn in retrograde is the time to “work step by step toward goals” and what better goal than a maiden Grand Slam title at the tournament where she first made her big breakthrough. And the stars couldn’t have written her a better draw, too: she’s landed in a section anchored by Karolina Pliskova and Sara Sorribes Tormo, with potential challenges from countrywomen like Amanda Anisimova and Serena Williams herself.
DK: Saturn may slow somewhat slow him, but I’m intrigued by the “career progression” Berrettini appears ready to make. Bold, ambitious, and eager to meet challenges head-on, that slight underdog status may be enough to help him ease into the tournament after the right hand surgery that ruled him out of the clay swing and help him go one better than his runner-up finish in 2021.
It’s also the only logic that realistically justifies picking against either Djokovic or Nadal, but at least my Gemini moon means I can’t be two-faced about it.