Fri, 22 Sep 2023

World No.1 Swiatek survives scare at Wimbledon

01 Jul 2022, 10:55 GMT+10

LONDON, June 30 (Xinhua) -- World No.1 Iga Swiatek from Poland needed more than two hours to pass lucky loser Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove on Thursday, reaching the last 32 in the women's singles at the Wimbledon Championships.

Swiatek, 21, overcame an early break to take the first set 6-4 but lost the second 4-6 to her Dutch opponent, ranked world No. 138. Then the French Open champion pulls herself together to win the match 6-3.

"I would say the grass is pretty tricky for me," said Swiatek, who extended her winning streak to 37 matches. "I'm not playing maybe as efficiently as on other surfaces."

"Basically my confidence is getting better overall. But this tournament is tricky and I'm still feeling out how to play the best game here," she added.

Last year's runner-up Karolina Pliskova from the Czech Republic suffered a bitter loss as the sixth seed was beaten by home wild card Katie Boulter 6-3, 6-7(4), 4-6.

"It was a very, very tough match for me from many aspects. Super proud of myself for getting through today against a player like that, having already played her last week. I also had expectations going out there," said Boulter who lost to Pliskova in the round of 16 in Eastbourne last week.

Chinese hopeful Zheng Qinwen also booked a berth in the round of 32 as the grass-court Grand Slam debutant saw off Belgian Greet Minnen 6-4, 6-1.

Zheng, 19, aroused a stir at the French Open after she stunned two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep and French veteran Alize Cornet en route to reaching the last 16 and took the first set before losing to final winner Swiatek.

In the men's singles, 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal defeated Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

"It's not the best start honestly and probably the best finish," said the 36-year-old. "I finished playing well. The fourth set has been the level of tennis for me, important improvement. The rest of the things I have room to improve."

The fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece breezily past Australian Jordan Thompson 6-2, 6-3, 7-5.

Last year's semifinalist Denis Shapovalov from Canada was defeated by American Brandon Nakashima in four sets.

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