By Ros Satar, at Wimbledon

  • Former champions Garbiñe Muguruza & Maria Sharapova stumble in the ‘Quarter of Doom’
  • Slow start for Roger Federer but he and Rafael Nadal advance
  • A bumper bucketful of Brits joins Kyle Edmund and Heather Watson in Round Two
WIMBLEDON, UK – While not quite the carnage of the first day, there were plenty of ups and downs for former champions, and a good day for the Brits

 

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Former champions Garbiñe Muguruza & Maria Sharapova stumble in the ‘Quarter of Doom’

The exodus of big names continued from the first round of Wimbledon as former champions Garbiñe Muguruza and Maria Sharapova were both bounced out of the tournament. Muguruza had to withdraw from pre-Wimbledon grass tournaments with a leg injury and came into Wimbledon obviously undercooked losing in straight sets to Beatriz Haddad Maia.

Maria Sharapova in the first round of Wimbledon 2019

Maria Sharapova in the first round of Wimbledon 2019 | Jimmie48 Tennis Photography

She was swiftly followed out of the tournament by Sharapova, who pulled the rip-cord after going down 0-5 in the deciding set. Looking very withdrawn in press, we have to wonder how much is left in the tank for this faltering comeback since her drugs ban.

She said, after her match: “I’ve had a history of a tendon in my left forearm flaring up. It happened today in the second set. I probably couldn’t have gotten through the whole final set, but I did my best.

“I don’t want to leave. Everyone has a job in this place. You guys have a job. Of course, I withdrew in the middle of the match. I rarely do that. I haven’t given a press conference in a long time at a Grand Slam. I want to show up. Yeah, I mean, it’s, what, 30, 40 minutes after the match. I just saw a doctor, did a scan. Those things are not fun. I haven’t seen my team yet. This is part of the job.”

 

Slow start for Roger Federer but he and Rafael Nadal advance

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There was more drama when Lloyd Harris took a set off Roger Federer, which set pulses rising. Unfortunately the South African appeared to pick up a calf injury which needed treatment off court and after that it was fair to say that normal service was resumed, as Federer eased through the next three sets.

Rafael Nadal was not to taxed despite being broken in the very first game of his campaign, and of course it now sets up a popcorn clash with Nick Kyrgios. The Aussie took himself to five sets against compatriot Jordan Thompson before an hilarious press conference where he both challenged journalists and played with them before addressing the anticipation of the second-round clash.

“Uhm, not sure that me and Rafa could go down to the Dog & Fox and have a beer together. I don’t know him at all. I know him as a tennis player. I just don’t — no, I don’t know him very well.  I mean, we have a mutual respect, but that’s about it I think.”

 

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Bumper Round Two line-up of Brits

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For the British contingent – seven of the 10 who started out in the main draw live to fight another day (well two days if we are being pernickety with the round being spread over Wednesday and Thursday!)

Harriet Dart had the Duchess of Cambridge sitting in her first set against Christina McHale – which did not do that much good as she found herself a set down, but after the Duchess left, she turned the match around and took the more experienced American out.

While Katie Swan could not quite do the same against Laura Siegemund despite going up a break in the second set, it was left to Johanna Konta to come through a competitive match (with the Duchess’ blessing beforehand) to round out the women into the second round.

Dan Evans and Cameron Norrie both looked very controlled with their first round wins, while James Ward saw a two-set lead dwindle away at the hands of Nikoloz Basilashvili for a heart-breaking five-set loss.

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As Jay Clarke went down a set to Noah Rubin, it looked as though the ‘old-hands’ would be the ones carrying the men’s side of the draw, until he started to mount his comeback, winning in four sets to reach the second round for the first time.

Finally, Paul Jubb overcame a bagel in the first set, and indeed going two sets down to give Joao Sousa a moment of pause, as he took the third set in a tie-break. Sousa polished the match off in four sets, but it was a great experience for the Brit, who has still to decide what he plays before resuming his studies in America to complete college life.

Round Two play begins at 11am on the outer courts, with Centre Court & Court No. 1 starting at 1pm (BST).

 

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