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No sweat for Andy, but Kvitova crashes

China Daily | Updated: 2017-07-07 09:10

No sweat for Andy, but Kvitova crashes

China's Peng Shuai returns to Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro during their second-round match at Wimbledon on Wednesday. Peng was the only Chinese player to reach the third round after notching a 6-2, 6-2 victory.Alastair Grant / Ap

Murray moves on, Petra peters out as big names contend for last 32

LONDON - Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal and Venus Williams breezed into Wimbledon's third round on Wednesday, while fellow former champion Petra Kvitova tumbled out.

Williams, Kei Nishikori and Johanna Konta had to grind their way into the last 32, while new mom Victoria Azarenka continued her comeback bid for Grand Slam glory.

Dustin Brown, the dreadlocked German with Jamaican roots, knocked out Nadal in the second round two years ago at the All England Club.

However, world No 1 Murray was not caught out by his audacious drop shots, racing to a ruthless 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 victory on Centre Court.

"Once I got the break in the first set, I felt the momentum was with me. I started to see the shots he was going to play a little but quicker and that allowed me to get to some of the drop volleys," the Scot said.

Next up for Murray is a clash with colorful Italian 28th seed Fabio Fognini.

No sweat for Andy, but Kvitova crashes

Fourth seed Nadal, fresh from winning a historic 10th French Open, had a comfortable ride against fellow left-hander Donald Young of the US, winning 6-4, 6-2, 7-5.

He faces Russian 30th seed Karen Khachanov next.

"I'm happy now, it's great to be back in the third round without losing a set," Nadal said.

"I take it easy now, just trying to enjoy every moment. I'm having a great season."

Two-time champion Kvitova, who had been the bookmakers' title favorite, lost 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 to Madison Brengle of the US.

Kvitova, playing in her second Grand Slam since recovering from a December knife attack in her home, needed medical assistance during the third set.

"I just could not breathe, and I was feeling a bit sick," said the Czech. "I felt like an animal ... but a very slow animal."

Five-time champion Williams survived a scare against Chinese rising star Wang Qiang, eventually winning 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.

The American great's tournament has been overshadowed by a lawsuit she is facing over her involvement a fatal car crash in Florida.

She broke down in tears when questioned about the case following her first-round victory but was more composed after defeating Qiang.

"The past is something that you can't change, if it was good or bad. I like to live in the future. I don't want to think about the past, per se. It's done," she said.

Williams next faces Japan's Naomi Osaka, who ousted Czech 22nd seed Barbora Strycova.

Former world No 1 Azarenka, playing her first Grand Slam since giving birth to first child Leo in December, knocked out Russian 15th seed Elena Vesnina 6-3, 6-3.

Azarenka hopes to become the first mother to win the Wimbledon singles since Australian Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1980.

"It's really fun that I'm able to go home and spend time with my son," the Belarusian said.

Brits beaming

Azarenka next faces British wild card Heather Watson, who downed Latvian 18th seed Anastasija Sevastova.

Watson's compatriot Konta, seeded sixth, reached the third round for the first time with an epic 7-6 (6), 4-6, 10-8 win over Donna Vekic which left the Croatian in tears.

With Konta, Watson, Murray and Aljaz Bedene's wins, four British players have reached Wimbledon's third round for the first time since 1997.

"That's nice to know, but I'd rather set the goal at reaching second weeks and quarterfinals and contending for Slams," said Murray.

Nishikori dug deep to keep his Wimbledon hopes alive as the Japanese ninth seed ground out a 6-4, 6-7 (7), 6-1, 7-6 (6) win over Ukrainian qualifier Sergiy Stakhovsky. He next faces Spanish 18th seed Roberto Bautista Agut.

Fans shielded their faces from the sun as temperatures reached 29 C, while several players were bothered by an invasion of flying ants.

"I almost wanted to stop because they were hitting me in the face when I was trying to hit balls," said Sam Querrey.

The American and fellow seeds Marin Cilic, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Gilles Muller, Steve Johnson made it through.

Meanwhile, Russia's temperamental Daniil Medvedev, who knocked out world No 3 Stan Wawrinka, crashed to Belgian qualifier Ruben Bemelmans.

Medvedev threw coins at the umpire's chair before apologizing for his antics, which he denied was an attempt to imply the official was corrupt.

In the women's draw, second seed Simona Halep went through in straight sets, while fellow seeds Elina Svitolina and Dominika Cibulkova also made it safely through.

French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko joined them in the third round with a late - evening three-set win over Canadian qualifier Francoise Abanda.

Agence France-presse

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