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Champion Muguruza out of Wimbledon as shocks continue – highlights & report

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018
Wimbledon 2018 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club, Wimbledon Dates: 2-15 July
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, Connected TVs and the BBC Sport website and app; Live Radio 5 live and 5 live sports extra commentary; Text commentary online.

Defending champion Garbine Muguruza became the sixth top-eight women’s seed to exit Wimbledon as she lost to Alison van Uytvanck in the second round.

Belgian world number 47 Van Uytvanck demonstrated skill and power to beat the third seed 5-7 6-2 6-1.

The Spaniard suffered the earliest defeat of a defending women’s champion at the All England Club since Steffi Graf lost in the first round in 1994.

“Inside I was dying, especially serving out for the match,” Van Uytvanck said.

Top seed Simona Halep beat China’s Saisai Zheng 7-5 6-0 earlier on.

Halep and seventh seed Karolina Pliskova are the only top-eight seeds remaining in the women’s draw.

  • Third seed Cilic beaten by Pella
  • Nadal through despite time violations
  • Five main themes from day four
  • What has gone wrong for Konta?

It is only the second time that Van Uytvanck has gone beyond the second round at a major.

“In sets two and three I was just there mentally. I was in the zone and just hitting every ball and it was going my way,” she said.

“I would love to be in the second week for the first time at Wimbledon.”

Muguruza trailed 4-2 but won three games in a row in the opening set to lead 5-4.

Van Uytvanck fought back and Muguruza needed a second chance to serve out for the opening set.

The Belgian continued to show her fighting spirit in the second set and broke for a 4-2 advantage, with her forehand causing Muguruza all sorts of problems.

Van Uytvanck broke to make it 3-1 in the decider and showed few signs of nerves, breaking again for 5-1 before wrapping up the biggest win of her career and making it through to the third round for the first time.

She will next face Estonian 27th seed Anett Kontaveit for a place in the last 16.

Muguruza admitted it has been a tough match for both players.

“She played big, took a lot of risk and it worked for her,” she said. “I also think that my level was not where I wanted it to be. That’s also why she could develop that kind of level.

“It’s a bit sad because I wanted to really go out there. But I think she played great and she has a very good game for this surface.”

Van Uytvanck played fearlessly – analysis

Four-time Grand Slam champion and fellow Belgian Kim Clijsters: “It is a huge win. Van Uytvanck is a super nice girl. She had to deal with injuries in 2016 and worked hard to come back. For her to have this result is amazing. I am really happy for her.”

Three-time Wimbledon champion Boris Becker: “Court Two has the nickname of the graveyard because a lot of top seeds have lost on this court. The superstars are used to playing on Centre Court, Court One. Here it is a different atmosphere for both players.”

Former tour player and BBC commentator Chanda Rubin: “Van Uytvanck looked the same at 2-2 in the first set as she did at the end. You could not tell she was getting close to the biggest moment in her career. She’s been fearless and played strategically so well.”

Halep fights back to reach third round

Halep was 5-3 down in the first set against the world number 126 but once she got into her stride was a comfortable winner.

“I stopped missing and tried putting less power on the shot to make her run,” the 26-year-old told BBC Sport.

“I just have to fight for every point.”

Next up for the world number one will be Su-Wei Hsieh of Chinese Taipei.

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Edmund last Briton standing, big shocks & Kyrgios denials – day four at Wimbledon

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018
Wimbledon 2018 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club, Wimbledon Dates: 2-15 July
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, Connected TVs and the BBC Sport website and app; Live Radio 5 live and 5 live sports extra commentary; Text commentary online.

Only one British player remains in the Wimbledon singles draws after Johanna Konta was knocked out on day four.

Elsewhere, world number ones Rafael Nadal and Simona Halep were in action, three-time champion Novak Djokovic had an injury scare, the seeded players continued to fall, and Nick Kyrgios had another run in with the authorities.

Here are five things from Wimbledon.

  • Edmund, Nadal and Djokovic through to round three
  • Champion Muguruza beaten
  • Third seed Cilic suffers surprise exit

The shocks just keep on coming

After just four days of the championships, six of the top 10 women’s seeds and four of the top 10 men have already exited SW19.

Marin Cilic is the latest name in the men’s draw to bow out – and arguably the biggest shock, given that he reached the final last year and beat Novak Djokovic at Queen’s in the build-up to Wimbledon.

The Croatian third seed led Guido Pella by two sets when play was called off on Wednesday, but Pella produced a remarkable comeback on Thursday to stun Cilic 3-6 1-6 6-4 7-6 (7-4) 7-5.

The drama continued into the late evening when defending women’s champion and third seed Garbine Muguruza was toppled by Belgian Alison van Uytvanck.

Muguruza, a two-time Grand Slam champion who dominated Venus Williams in last year’s final, fell to a 5-7 6-2 6-1 loss.

She is the first women’s defending champion to lose inside the first two rounds at Wimbledon since Steffi Graf fell in the first round in 1994.

Three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka also exited on Thursday when his rain-affected match resumed.

Wawrinka was down two sets when play resumed against Italian Thomas Fabbiano but, unlike Pella, he was unable to turn the scoreline in his favour.

Denis Shapovalov, the 26th seed, and 27th seed Damir Dzumhur also saw their Wimbledon journeys come to an end in the second round.

Edmund last Briton standing after Konta exit

Twelve British players started the tournament in the men’s and women’s singles draws but only Kyle Edmund remains.

Wild card Katie Boulter was knocked out early on Thursday before British number one Johanna Konta suffered an early exit, losing to Dominika Cibulkova, much to the disappointment of the Centre Court crowd.

Konta, who will now will now drop out of the world’s top 40, was dominated in the match, saying afterwards her opponent played “incredibly well”.

  • Konta beaten by Cibulkova – reports & highlights
  • Analysis: What has gone wrong for Konta?

But after Konta’s defeat Kyle Edmund turned the disappointment into exuberant celebration when he beat Bradley Klahn to reach the Wimbledon third round for the first time.

It was also 23-year-old’s first victory on Centre Court and the Yorkshireman punched the air wildly after winning match point.

“You grow up watching Wimbledon and dreaming of playing here so to get my first win here will always be memorable,” Edmund said.

He will play three-time champion Djokovic next…

Djokovic plays down injury scare

Djokovic reached the third round with a routine win over Argentine Horacio Zeballos but late in the third set the Serb called for the trainer for treatment on a muscle injury in his left leg.

In the closing stages the 12-time Grand Slam champion winced when putting pressure on his leg but afterwards said the issue was “nothing major”.

“Tomorrow I’ll see on the practice session how it feels,” he added. “Hopefully it’s going to be fine.

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“It’s most likely a twitch, you know, in the muscle or something like this that has affected the knee a little bit.

“I’ve been doing check-ups now, it seems like nothing major.”

Another of the favourites for the title, Spaniard Rafael Nadal, progressed in straight sets against Mikhail Kukushkin but was challenged at times in an entertaining match.

The former champion was given a time violation during the match for taking too long to change his clothes and after the match said he should have gone “to the toilet” to avoid the issue.

Kyrgios entertains on and off court

Australia’s Nick Kyrgios, a controversial but entertaining character, was in impressive form en route to victory over Robin Haase.

But he was involved in two exchanges with the umpire, one after receiving a code violation for inappropriate language and later after a foot fault.

Kyrgios questioned the call from the line judge, asking “What, after I hit it? How’s that possible?”, to which umpire James Keothavong said: “That’s what he has to do. He can’t call it before you hit it.”

Even Kyrgios was amused by that. The umpire later came down from his chair to demonstrate the rule as Kyrgios watched on.

The 23-year-old was then asked about the exchanges in his post-match press conference…

You seemed to get upset about the code violation.

NK: Not upset at all.

You spoke to the umpire while the Mexican wave was going on for quite some time.

NK: Does that make me upset?

You had a word with the line judge, as well.

NK: Does that make me upset?

Were you upset?

NK: No.

Why did you have a word with the line judge?

NK: Because you generally, like, talk to someone when you’re curious about something. Doesn’t make you upset, champ. Good question.

Isner serves his way to victory

Ninth seed Isner was taken to five sets by Ruben Bemelmans but saved two match points to win.

The 6ft 10in American hit 64 aces in the match – the third most in a match at Wimbledon, only bettered by the 113 and 110 managed by Isner and Nicolas Mahut when they played the longest match in Wimbledon history in 2010.

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South Americans Upset Kontinen/Peers At Wimbledon

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018

South Americans Upset Kontinen/Peers At Wimbledon

Defending champs Kubot/Melo advance

Henri Kontinen and John Peers arrived at The Championships with plenty of momentum after capturing the Fever-Tree Championships title, their first as a team on grass, last month. And they appeared set to escape trouble in the first round at the All England Club.

But the third seeds could not complete a two-set comeback at Wimbledon on Thursday. The Argentine-Chilean duo of Maximo Gonzalez and Nicolas Jarry beat Kontinen/Peers 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 8-6.

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Defending champions Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo had better luck, ousting home favourites Luke Bambridge and Jonny O’Mara 6-4, 6-3, 7-5. It was a tough test for the No. 2 seeds, as the British duo was fresh off its maiden ATP World Tour title, earned at last week’s Nature Valley International in Eastbourne.

In other action, eighth seeds Nikola Mektic and Alexander Peya beat Jurgen Melzer and Daniel Nestor, who were competing together for the first time, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4. No. 13 seeds Raven Klaasen and Michael Venus finished off Aussies Alex Bolt and Lleyton Hewitt 7-5, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 in a match that was carried over to Thursday due to rain. Seventh seeds Jack Sock and Mike Bryan, whose twin brother, Bob, is out with a hip injury, advanced when Italians Daniele Bracciali and Andreas Seppi retired down 3-6, 0-2.

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#NextGenATP Fritz Takes Lead Against Zverev

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018

#NextGenATP Fritz Takes Lead Against Zverev

Play suspended with American one set from his biggest win

#NextGenATP Taylor Fritz is one set away from a stunning victory at Wimbledon, taking a 4-6, 7-5, 7-6(0) lead against fourth seed Alexander Zverev on Thursday before play was suspended due to darkness.

Fritz is pursuing his second main-draw win at the All England Club, after earning his first on Tuesday. He arrived at SW19 having lost his past four tour-level matches, but that has not stopped the American from putting forth his best performance of the year.

If the 20-year-old claims his first triumph against an opponent in the Top 5 of the ATP Rankings, he will move into the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time. His previous best win came at the 2017 BNP Paribas Open, where he defeated then-World No. 7 Marin Cilic. 

His opponent, three-time ATP World Tour Masters 1000 champion Zverev, won the pair’s only previous FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting in straight sets at the Citi Open in 2016. And the 21-year-old is no stranger to having his back against the wall. At Roland Garros, the German became the eighth player in the Open Era to battle through three consecutive five-setters in Paris.

Fritz performs well under pressure, too, holding a 12-2 record in deciding-set tie-breaks at all levels, including 5-2 at tour-level.

The winner will play former World No. 10 Ernests Gulbis, who defeated No. 27 seed Damir Dzumhur 2-6, 6-4, 6-3, 1-6, 6-3. The Latvian advances to the third round at the All England Club for the second consecutive year, and he has a plethora of experience, competing in his 41st major main draw. Gulbis reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros in 2014 and the quarter-finals in 2008.

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Dzumhur was fresh off of his third ATP World Tour title, lifting the trophy at last week’s Turkish Airlines Open Antalya.

Did You Know?
Zverev reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final at Roland Garros. Previously, he had not advanced past the Round of 16 in 11 attempts. 

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Djokovic sets up possible Edmund match as Nadal also progresses

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018
Wimbledon 2018 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club, Wimbledon Dates: 2-15 July
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, Connected TVs and the BBC Sport website and app; Live Radio 5 live and 5 live sports extra commentary; Text commentary online.

Novak Djokovic set up a potential third-round meeting with Britain’s Kyle Edmund at Wimbledon with a clinical 6-1 6-2 6-3 victory over Horacio Zeballos.

The three-time champion is joined in the next round by world number one Rafael Nadal, who was made to work in a 6-4 6-3 6-4 win over Mikhail Kukushkin.

British number one Edmund faces American Bradley Klahn later on Thursday.

Nadal will play Alex de Minaur for a place in the fourth round.

  • Live scores, schedule and results
  • BBC TV, radio and online coverage

Nadal tested by Kukushkin

While the final result goes down as a straight-sets victory, this was far from simple.

Kukushkin, who beat British number one Kyle Edmund in the Eastbourne quarter-finals last week, showed he meant business from the opening game with his powerful forehand that seemed to take both Nadal and the packed Centre Court by surprise.

When his big shot worked, it was exquisite – he made 28 winners, nine more than Nadal, with most of them on his forehand.

But his 34 unforced errors meant he never really had a chance against the 17-time Grand Slam champion.

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After wrapping up the first set when the Kazakh netted a forehand, Nadal was more ruthless in the second where he lost just four points on his serve.

But Kukushkin, who is coached by his wife, just would not give up and in the third went a break up for 3-1 before dropping serve in the next game.

He eventually succumbed to the inevitable when his forehand clipped the top of the net and bounced back to his own side as the crowd got to their feet to give the players a standing ovation.

Nadal marches into the fourth round but Kukushkin goes home £63,000 better off and with a lot of new fans.

Djokovic wins despite thigh problem

It was far more straightforward for Djokovic against world number 126 Zeballos, with the main problem for the Serb coming at the end of the seventh game of the third set when he had the trainer on for lengthy treatment on his left thigh.

Former world number one Djokovic, who has slipped to 21st in the rankings after time out with an elbow injury, delivered an impressive 15 aces and 31 winners against the Argentine.

Zeballos, who was appearing in the Wimbledon second round for the first time, had little to offer in attack and failed to convert any of his three break points.

It is the 60th match Djokovic has won at Wimbledon, taking him one ahead of John McEnroe, and continues his recent return to form since pulling out of his quarter-final here last year with an elbow problem.

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Two Aces Come To Isner's Rescue

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018

Two Aces Come To Isner’s Rescue

Cilic looks to join fellow big-server Isner in third round

John Isner knows a thing or two about striking aces. At The Championships eight years ago, he struck a record 113 aces in a 70-68 fifth set victory over Nicolas Mahut in the first round.

On Thursday, in a match carried over from the previous night, the American fired 64 aces — the second-most of his career and the third-most in Wimbledon history — with two of those cannonballs saving two match points at 4-5, 15/40 in the deciding set en route to victory over qualifier Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium.

Isner completed a 6-1, 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-7(3), 7-5 second-round win in three hours and 46 minutes, having resumed the clash at 3-4 in the fifth set. Isner, who also saved one break point when serving for the match at 6-5, won 80 per cent of his first-service points for a place in the Wimbledon third round for the fourth time.

The 33-year-old, competing at the All England Club for the 10th time, now faces Radu Albot.

Elsewhere, third seed Marin Cilic, who finished runner-up to Roger Federer in last year’s final, is also locked in a fifth-set battle, carried over from Wednesday, against Guido Pella of Argentina.

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Bolt/Hewitt To Return After Rain Halts Play At SW19

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018

Bolt/Hewitt To Return After Rain Halts Play At SW19

Herbert/Mahut advance to second round

Lleyton Hewitt and Alex Bolt will need to come out firing on Thursday if they are to reach the second round at Wimbledon. The unseeded Australian duo, who reached the Surbiton Trophy semi-finals on the ATP Challenger Tour in June, trailed No. 13 seeds Raven Klaasen and Michael Venus 5-7, 2-6, 6-3, 1-4 when rain called an end to play on Wednesday at The All England Club.

The 37-year-old Hewitt, who owns a 5-5 doubles record at tour-level this season, is bidding to secure his 10th victory in 17 doubles encounters at SW19. Hewitt is aiming to reach the doubles quarter-finals for the first time, having reached the Round of 16 on four occasions.

Defending champions Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo led Nature Valley International champions Luke Bambridge and Jonny O’Mara 6-4, 6-3, 3-4 before rain cancelled play. Kubot and Melo, who defeated Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic to lift the 2017 trophy, are bidding to become the first team in nine years to successfully defend the title (2009, Nestor/Zimonjic).

The winners of the first-round clash will face Jonathan Erlich and Marcin Matkowski in the second round. Erlich and Matkowski edged a tight three-set battle against Frenchmen Jonathan Eysseric and Hugo Nys 7-6(5), 7-6(4), 7-6(8).

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Roland Garros champions Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut began their bid for a second Wimbledon title (2016) in style, beating Roberto Carballes Baena and Marco Cecchinato 6-4, 6-2, 6-4. The fourth seeds fired eight aces and won 74 per cent of second-serve points to advance after 84 minutes.

Nature Valley International finalists Ken Skupski and Neal Skupski needed just 86 minutes to defeat Ilija Bozoljac and Damir Dzumhur 6-3, 6-4, 6-4. The British brothers will meet ninth seeds Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi and Jean-Julien Rojer or David Ferrer and Marc Lopez. Qureshi and Rojer lead 7-6(3), 6-4, 2-1.

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Robin Haase and Robert Lindstedt upset 10th-seeded Ivan Dodig and Rajeev Ram 7-6(4), 7-5, 6-3. The unseeded duo saved all six break points they faced and converted two of three break opportunities to progress after two hours and 12 minutes.

Haase and Lindstedt will face Antonio Sancic and Andrei Vasilevski in the second round. The Croatian-Belarusian tandem defeated Japanese pairing Taro Daniel and Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3, 6-4, 6-4.

Libema Open champions Dominic Inglot and Franko Skugor safely booked their spot in the second round, beating Marton Fucsovics and Mischa Zverev 6-4, 7-5, 6-2. The No. 15 seeds won 88 per cent of first-serve points to progress after one hour and 46 minutes.

Pablo Cuevas and Marcel Granollers overcame Andre Begemann and Yasutaka Uchiyama 6-2, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(7). The No. 11 seeds converted three of seven break point chances throughout the two-hour, 32-minute clash. Julio Peralta and Horacio Zeballos lead No. 16 seeds Max Mirnyi and Philipp Oswald 6-1, 2-3.

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Thursday Preview: Nadal, Djokovic Headline Packed Day Four

  • Posted: Jul 05, 2018

Thursday Preview: Nadal, Djokovic Headline Packed Day Four

Zverev vs. Fritz; Del Potro vs. Lopez among other compelling second-round contests

We know about “Manic Monday”, the second Monday of Wimbledon in which both the men’s and women’s fourth-round matches take place. But what about “Thrilling Thursday”?

Day four of The Championships is set to be extra packed as the regular slate of second-round matches will be joined by 11 to-be-finished men’s contests, including six singles matchups that were carried over from Wednesday because of rain.

Second seed Rafael Nadal leads the day on Centre Court against Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin. The No. 1 player in the ATP Rankings had little trouble dismissing Dudi Sela during his opener on Tuesday, and holds a 3-0 advantage, including a 2014 third-round Wimbledon win, in his FedEx ATP Head2Head series with the 30-year-old Kukushkin.

You May Also Like: Roig’s Five Takeaways From Nadal’s R1 Win

Three-time champion Novak Djokovic will go for his 60th win at Wimbledon and try to become just the fifth man to win 60 times at SW19. His opponent, Argentina’s Horacio Zeballos, No. 126 in the ATP Rankings, has captured only one tour-level victory on grass.

Top Brit Kyle Edmund looks to carry the British flag high once more when he meets American Bradley Klahn. Edmund, playing at his career-high No. 17 in the ATP Rankings, is trying to reach the third round at Wimbledon for the first time.

Perhaps the most intriguing matchup of the day will come when fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro and Spain’s Feliciano Lopez step onto No. 1 Court. Del Potro is a former Wimbledon semi-finalist (2013), but three of Lopez’s six ATP World Tour titles have come on grass, including last year’s Fever-Tree Championships at The Queen’s Club. The 36-year-old Spaniard is playing in his 66th consecutive Grand Slam championship.

#NextGenATP Taylor Fritz of the U.S. will have the opportunity to make a statement victory against fourth seed Alexander Zverev, who’s looking to back up his Roland Garros quarter-final run. Can Aussie Bernard Tomic summon his 2011 Wimbledon magic, when he made the quarter-finals? Tomic meets 24th seed Kei Nishikori of Japan.

Tomic’s compatriot Nick Kyrgios, a favourite of some to make a deep run, meets Robin Haase of The Netherlands, and 26th seed Denis Shapovalov will try to go 2-0 against Frenchmen during the fortnight when he meets Benoit Paire. Canada’s #NextGenATP star beat Jeremy Chardy in his Wimbledon opener.

Among the matches to be finished that were carried over from Wednesday:

  • Third seed Marin Cilic leads Argentine Guido Pella 6-3, 6-1, 3-4;
  • Eighth seed Kevin Anderson leads Andreas Seppi of Italy 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-3, 1-1;
  • Stan Wawrinka is trying to to come back against Italy’s Thomas Fabbiano as the Swiss is down 6-7(7), 3-6, 6-5;
  • Belgium’s Ruben Bemelmans is mounting a comeback of his own against ninth seed John Isner, leading 1-6, 4-6, 7-6(6), 7-6(3), 4-3;
  • Isner’s compatriot Jared Donaldson is two service holds away from forcing a fifth set against #NextGenATP Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas after the American broke in the fifth but trails 3-6, 2-6, 6-3, 4-3;
  • And German Philipp Kohlschreiber leads Gilles Muller, who beat Nadal in the fourth round last year, 7-6(6), 6-6(5/3).

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