Clear74° WeatherClear74° Weather

No. 1s advance without drama

Top-ranked Serena Williams moves into the third round with a straight-sets victory. Her next opponent is 42-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm, a Wimbledon semifinalist in 1996.

Getty Images

Top-ranked Serena Williams moves into the third round with a straight-sets victory. Her next opponent is 42-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm, a Wimbledon semifinalist in 1996.

LONDON — Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams restored a semblance of order to this wild Wimbledon.

A day after Roger Federer led a mass exodus of high-seeded players and favorites because of loss or injury, the top-ranked man and woman advanced to the third round with straight-sets victories Thursday.

Djokovic defeated American qualifier Bobby Reynolds 7-6 (7-2), 6-3, 6-1 under the retractable roof on Centre Court. A few hours earlier, Williams had dismissed 19-year-old Caroline Garcia 6-3, 6-2.

After Wednesday's nonstop string of stunners, there wasn't a surprise to be had at the All England Club. The highest-seeded player to lose was No. 17 Milos Raonic, and there were just two injury retirements, compared with seven Wednesday.

Instead, there was the familiar sight of covers being pulled over the courts as rain came to the All England Club for the first time this week, forcing the roof to be closed and a number of afternoon matches to be suspended until today.

Djokovic faced surprisingly stiff resistance from Reynolds in the first set. However, he dominated the tiebreaker and had little trouble from there, breaking Reynolds twice in the second and third sets.

"I think the fact that the top players lost in the last few days (Rafael Nadal preceded Federer) gives enough reason for all of us to not underestimate any opponent," Djokovic said. "Everybody, especially lower-ranked players in the opening rounds, have nothing to lose, really, when they go on the center stage and they come up with their best game."

In the process, Djokovic made this the worst Wimbledon for American men in 101 years. None of the 11 American men in the tournament advanced past the second round, the first time that has happened since 1912, and no American men were in the tournament that year. Though none reached the third round in 1911, either.

Williams is still the favorite in the women's draw and now goes from playing an opponent 12 years her junior to facing one 11 years her senior.

Next up for the 31-year-old American is Kimiko Date-Krumm, who at 42 became the oldest woman to reach the third round at Wimbledon in the Open era. Date-Krumm beat Alexandra Cadantu 6-4, 7-5 to advance this far at Wimbledon for the first time since 1996, when she went to the semifinals.

"I have so much respect for (Date-Krumm)," said Williams, who became the third-oldest woman in the Open era to win a Grand Slam tournament when she captured this year's French Open. "I think she's so inspiring to be playing such high-level tennis at her age. And she's a real danger on the grasscourt, I know that. I definitely will have to be ready."

Date-Krumm is the second-oldest woman to have won a match at Wimbledon, after Martina Navratilova, who was 47 when she reached the second round in 2004. Date-Krumm took a 12-year break from tennis before returning in 2008.

"I don't know how she's able to do so well," said Williams, adding she doesn't expect to be around for another 10 years. "I didn't see myself playing at 31. I definitely do not see myself playing at 42."

Last year's runnerup, Agnieszka Radwanska, also breezed into the next round with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Mathilde Johansson, a match that had to be completed under the roof.

No. 6 Li Na looked in trouble for a while before overcoming a poor second set to beat Simona Halep 6-2, 1-6, 6-0. Other seeded players to win included No. 11 Roberta Vinci and No. 14 Sam Stosur, a Tampa resident. Bernard Tomic advanced by defeating Tampa resident James Blake 6-3, 6-4, 7-5.

The two injury retirements were Michael Llodra, who quit with a hamstring problem after losing the first set 7-5 against 23rd-seeded Andreas Seppi, and Paul-Henri Mathieu, who retired while trailing 6-3, 5-1 against Feliciano Lopez.

>>today

Featured matches

Women: Angelique Kerber (7) vs. Kaia Kanepi; Petra Kvitova (8) vs. Ekaterina Makarova (25); Marion Bartoli (15) vs. Camila Giorgi; Sloane Stephens (17) vs. Petra Cetkovska

Men: Andy Murray (2) vs. Tommy Robredo (32); David Ferrer (4) vs. Roberto Bautista Agut; Nicolas Almagro (15) vs. Jerzy Janowicz (24); Mikhail Youzhny (20) vs. Viktor Troicki; Grigor Dimitrov (29) vs. Grega Zemlja, completion of suspended match

TV: 7 a.m., ESPN

No. 1s advance without drama 06/27/13 [Last modified: Thursday, June 27, 2013 11:22pm]

© 2014 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...