I would be lying if I didn’t say I felt bad for Kyle Edmund. The slip when two sets up looked to play a big part in the defeat against Fernando Verdasco. The Brit had given back the break he had in the third before this but even so, it is bad luck. Edmund hasn’t used it as an excuse, far from it but its really bad luck. Verdasco will now play Thomas Fabbiano who won the little v large contest against Ivo Karlovic.
Novak Djokovic finished off the day on Centre Court giving the fans a bit of a treat. It was top level tennis from the Serb and Denis Kudla couldn’t get close to him. Very professional and from what we have seen so far, the tournament favourite hasn’t done his chances any harm. It will be Hubert Hurkacz next for Nole, Djokovic beat him at the French. The Pole got out of a sticky situation in the third set against Leo Mayer, saving set points before finishing him in four.
Felix Auger Aliassime’s four-set win over Corentin Moutet makes me think he is struggling here a bit. This hasn’t been champagne tennis so far from him, but fair play he still has the wins to show for it and reasonably comfortably. Ugo Humbert should cause him a few more problems next after he destroyed Marcel Granollers, surprisingly in straights.
David Goffin continues to impress after another comfortable win, this time over Jeremy Chardy and it leads me to a match I spoke about in my preview. I said there that I thought Daniil Medvedev would have too much for him (Goffin) on grass but I am not sure anymore, it does look like the toss of a coin. Alexei Popyrin caused Medvedev more than a few problems but the Russian was up to the test.
I really thought Feli Lopez was going to beat Karen Khachanov and put my money where my mouth was. It was very frustrating to see the Spaniard broken when serving to stay in sets two, three and four. The match went with it. I love the way Karen plays but this was better than I expected from him on the grass right now. Lopez didn’t seem to serve well in the big moments but this was decent from KK. Bautista Agut will be another big test in the next round, he beat Steve Darcis by way of retirement but was already two sets and 4/2 up. This should be a good little match on Friday.
Stan Wawrinka was a casualty on the day, he has lost to Reilly Opelka in five, 8/6 in the decider. Stan was talking his chances up after his first round but he went missing at the end of the last two sets and that was exceptionally costly as it handed Opelka the match. Milos Raonic is next up for Opelka, Raonic came through Robin Haase in three.
Kevin Anderson was made to work for a couple of sets by Janko Tipsarevic. Tipsy had treatment on his hip area after the third set though and was apparently struggling quite badly. Anderson will have another tricky one against Guido Pella but one he should come through. The Argentine continues to pick up wins on the grass and came from two sets to one down to beat Andreas Seppi.
Finally, in the men’s, Jiri Vesely is having another good run at SW19. He came from a set down to oust Pablo Cuevas. I think he will beat Benoit Paire next too. The Frenchman advanced when Kecamonovic retired when two sets down. The Serb looked to be struggling in Antalya last week so I am not massively surprised to see him injured.
It was a very poor performance from Madison Keys against Polona Hercog. Hercog played with her usual variety and the errors from Keys flowed once in the rally. It wasn’t that Keys didn’t have chances, she just did not take them. Hercog will play Coco Gauff in the third round after she backed up with another top performance against Maggie Rybarikova. This was moved indoors on Court One so they could start and finish, the American did not get broke. Maggie was smiling during the last game, she could not believe what was coming back. Great application, composure and execution once again from Coco.
Simona Halep beat fellow countryman Mihaela Buzarnescu but didn’t have it all her own way. She was taken the distance but ultimately proved too consistent. Halep is talking positively but it doesn’t look great from where I am so far. Vika Azarenka is her next opponent after she beat Alja Tomljanovic. She was initially 2-0 down but won twelve games on the spin to secure an impressive win.
Caroline Wozniacki gained revenge for her defeat to Veronika Kudermetova at the French. The upset was widely fancied here again but it sounds like Kudermetova wasn’t at the same level as in Paris. It was all very solid from Woz in a section of the draw that has really opened up. She will face in the inform Shuai Zhang next. She comfortably followed up her win over Caroline Garcia to beat Yanina Wickmayer 6/3 6/2.
Dayana Yastremska hit her way past Sofia Kenin. She looks to be playing pretty well here so far does the talented Ukranian, this was a power performance according to reports. Yulia Putintseva put in a horror show against Viktorija Golubic. The winner of Yastremska/Golubic will play Wozniacki/Zhang in the last 16. Like I said open.
It was much better from Karolina Pliskova against Monica Puig. I can still see Su-Wei Hsieh causing her a lot of problems in the next round. It has the potential to be a nightmare matchup for Pliskova. Hsieh was a tidy straight-sets winner over Kirsten Flipkens. I am looking forward to watching this one.
Heather Watson was eventually outplayed by Anett Kontaveit. It was a tight first set but the gulf in class increased in the second. Kontaveit was showing off her power and Heather couldn’t quite deal with it. Karolina Muchova is in the next round after she beat Madison Brengle, who had similar problems to Watson in dealing with the power from the other end.
Petra Martic dropped the opening set again, this time against Anastasia Potapova. She stayed calm though and turned it around. She does have a chance of doing some damage here if she can keep it up. She faces Danielle Collins next after she won a bizarre match against Anastasija Sevastova. The Latvian lead by a set and double break, then lost ten out of the next eleven games to trail 4-0 in the decider. She then got it back on serve, only to lose the next two games. Some of Collins angles are incredible though, especially on that forehand wing. Sevastova had a bit of her own medicine.
Elina Svitolina was fortunate to progress after Margarita Gasparyan retired when a set-up but 6/5 down in the second with cramps. She is lucky to still be around here and the fact that Maria Sakkari is now favourite to beat her in the third round tells you a lot, she apparently played very well against Marie Bouzkova.
I have to say I am really looking forward to day 4. Let’s ave it!
Andy Del Potro