That was a long, hard day, but worth every minute. The reason this blog wasn’t released last night was due to the fact I had my picture taken with Serena. I’m still absooooooolutely buzzin. There will no doubt be a blog soon. If you follow me on social media you will already have seen it. If not you will have to wait a couple of weeks. Greatest day of life? Big chances. Legend. The excitement of this may have spoilt the quality of the blog. Apologises if so.
I started this delightful day off with my girlfriend with a trip to Court 11 to watch Maggie Rybarikova against Sorana Cirstea. I had obviously put Maggie up as one of the bigger prices to get with this fortnight. On arrival, she led 5/3* and there seemed no cause for concern. Cirstea though, just had one of those days where she hit out and made a lot of them. She played well and though Rybarikova tried to get things going, Cirstea dealt with her opponents slice backhand well and that was key. 7/5 6/3 to the Romanian.
I then went to see Federer take out Lajovic very comfortably on Centre. There didn’t seem much belief from the Serb and Federer was in no mood to hang around. It had an air of exhibition stuff about it. The crowd were obviously delighted by this.
Then I moved over to Court One to see Serena get the job done in straights against Aranxta Rus. Rena was the first to admit after that her serve is “playing catchup”. She was understandably slow starting at the French too. Hopefully she will get into her stride here soon. I thought Rus played ok though. It was a nice match to get Serena into the tournament. Rus flashed a few winners of her own but Serena did enough in a 7/5 6/3 win. The fine tuning should increase with each match. Court One was noticeably windy yesterday too. The passion and desire were once again there for everyone to see. Long may it continue for The G.O.A.T.
I actually had a bet on Mihaela Buzarnescu to beat Aryna Sabalenka, so I dragged my poor girlfriend out to Court 16 after all the excitement. A tight first set saw Sabalenka nick the tiebreak. It is becoming a habit though it seems for Mihaela to drop the opener. She seems to thrive on it. I actually really enjoy watching her play though. Love the lefty topspin cross court. As Sabakenka’s unforced error count increased the Romanian shut up shop taking a 6/7 6/1 5/1* lead. She served it out for 6/4 at the second time of asking. She will play Katie Swan next after the Brit walloped Irina Begu 6/2 6/2.
Around the courts there were also wins in the men’s for Stan Wawrinka, who upset Grigor Dimitrov in four. Rough draw for Grigor but he was well below par. Good win for Stan however. Other winners were Raonic, Pouille, Anderson, (over Liam Broady), Isner, Tsitsipas, Kohlschreiber and Monfils beat Richard Gasquet. Poor effort from Gasquet who was completely outgunned.
Cilic and Querrey got off to straight sets wins, against Nishioka and Thompson respectively. Commanding performances that were never in doubt. Borna Coric has lost though. I said in my preview I was worried about his record over five sets and he has lost tamely to Daniil Medvedev. Medvedev beat Stan here last year, so he enjoys an upset.
The biggest upset in the Ladies came as Elina Svitolina lost to Mallorca Champion, Tatjana Maria. This just backs up how the Ukranian struggles on the grass in comparison to hard or clay. Less surprisingly, Sloane Stephens lost to Donna Vekic. Despite what the American says I can’t have her prep was that great coming into Wimbledon. She will go close here one day though, I’m sure if it. Coco Vandeweghe lost to Katerina Siniakova, she was supposedly carrying an injury. Sounds like Siniakova wasn’t so sure though. It completes a miserable period for Coco. This is the surface she usually has a fair amount of success on.
Caro Wozniacki, Madison Keys, and Julia Goerges all won in straights. Venus came from a set down against Johanna Larsson to take the last two sets 6/2 6/1, playing some good stuff by the end. Karolina Pliskova had a scare against Harriet Dart. The British WC took the second set 6/2 before Pliskova found her rhythm in the decider. She will play Vika Azarenka next.
Day two coming and ill be there again.
Andy Del Potro