This post is the second Set Points recap of the day, which covers the fourth and final quarter of the draw. For the first Set Points post that covers the third quarter, click HERE. It was another Slam day of surprises with a top five seed and two of last year’s quarter-finalist both going out on day 1. Read on for nine stories from Monday’s matches.
Maria d. Svitolina (Wimbledon, R1)
Two of the top five seeds are already out of Wimbledon as the number five seed, Elina Svitolina joined Sloane Stephens in exiting the tournament. Step forward, Tatjana Maria who won, 7-6(3) 4-6 6-1 on Court No.2. In the madness of the last few hours, I only saw the last few games of this match. Maria obviously came into it with bundles of confidence after winning her first WTA title in Mallorca. Maria looked so secure at the end and that slice was just devilish.
It was always going to be a tough draw at Wimbledon for Svitolina although I never saw this result coming. I’m really surprised. It’s been a rough time since Rome. I do expect Svitolina to come back strong on the hard courts.
Radwanska d. Ruse (Wimbledon, R1)
This was a contender for match of the day as Agnieszka Radwanska saved SIX match points to somehow claw her way back to beat the impressive Romanian qualifier, Elena-Gabriela Ruse, 6-3 4-6 7-5. Radwanska saved all the match points in a marathon eight deuce game at *4-5 in the decider. I tuned in for the end which was super entertaining!
My ultimate takeaway from the match was yet another find from Romania. I loved Ruse’s attitude and she has a really neat game. I hope we get to see more of her on the WTA tour. Props to Radwanska for digging out the win.
Funny moment of the day
I’m still cackling at this. Ruse managed to walk into a ballboy with the towel still on her head. The commentator’s reaction was hilarious!
S.Williams d. Rus (Wimbledon, R1)
Serena Williams came from a break down in the second set to beat Arantxa Rus on a windy No.1 Court, 7-5 6-3. It certainly wasn’t a classic! It was a good first outing for Serena to get done in straights. The serve held up for the most part.
Siniakova d. Vandeweghe (Wimbledon, R1)
In a match that was mostly painful to watch, Katerina Siniakova recovered from a 2-5 third set deficit to see off a heavily hobbling, CoCo Vandeweghe, 6-7(3) 6-3 8-6. Vandeweghe was practically on one leg as she battled an ankle injury. She also suffered an awful slip up at the net towards the end of the first set. She stubbornly played on and came very close to the win. Siniakova seemed completely lost in her tactics. Playing an injured player is not as easy as it sounds!
Really rough luck for CoCo who is always at her best on the grass. It just didn’t happen her for this year as Siniakova progresses to a fascinating second round clash against Ons Jabeur who won her first main draw match at Wimbledon.
Cirstea d. Rybarikova (Wimbledon, R1)
Winning her first match on the grass this year, Sorana Cirstea upset the 2017 Wimbledon semi-finalist and number 19 seed, Magdalena Rybarikova in straight sets, 7-5 6-3. It was a nice start to the match with the grass looking gorgeous and the tennis pretty damn good too! The first breakthrough came at 3-3 where a string of errors saw Cirstea lose her serve. Cirstea kept up with her aggressive tactics, breaking Rybarikova’s serve with a return winner that clipped the net and then taking the first set with a crunching backhand winner.
Ultimately, it was Cirstea’s aggressive hitting and ability to handle Rybarikova’s slice that won the match as she continually pushed Rybarikova back. Magda’s record at Wimbledon is a bizarre one – nine first round losses, one third round appearance and one semi-final appearance!
Keys d. Tomljanovic (Wimbledon, R1)
Madison Keys didn’t face a break point in a 6-4 6-2 first round win over Ajla Tomljanvoic. There were no data points on grass for Madison in 2018 heading into Wimbledon. Taking that into account, this was a very encouraging performance as she continues to be a very reliable player at the Slams. Keys faces a tricky second rounder against Luksika Kumkhum – one to watch!
Giorgi d. Sevastova (Wimbledon, R1)
Camila Giorgi knocked out the number 21 seed, Anastasija Sevastova, 6-1 2-6 6-4. Giorgi’s success behind the first serve and willingness to come forward felt like the difference between the two. Sevastova has had a disappointing month with first round losses at both the French Open and Wimbledon. Giorgi on grass is always a danger!
Safarova d. Bondarenko (Wimbledon, R1)
We will finish this post on a high as Lucie Safarova was not broken once in a 6-4 6-4 first round win over Kateryna Bondarenko. This was a surprisingly drama free performance from Lucie and she served out both sets with no fuss. Lucie gets Aga in the second round. I’m at Wimbledon on Wednesday so hoping this will get No.1 Court. I think it’s unlikely but I can dream!