On a hot and humid Tuesday, champions Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Petra Kvitova raised the mercury level as they raced into the second round of the 2015 Wimbledon Championships. But two of last year’s standout performers – 2014 runner-up Eugenie Bouchard and 2014 semi-finalist Simona Halep, had to endure a miserable time at the All England Club as they were bounced out in the first round.
Roger, Rafa, Murray impress
Former men’s champions Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray had a hassle-free day at the All England Club on Tuesday.
Seven-time winner Roger Federer was sharp and accurate in his quick 6-1, 6-3, 6-3 victory over Bosnian Damir Dzumhur on Centre Court. The Swiss maestro did not face even a single break point.
Two-time champion Rafael Nadal, who is seeded 10th this time, easily dispatched Brazilian Thomaz Bellucci 6-4, 6-2, 6-4. The Spaniard was broken twice as he posted his fifth consecutive triumph over Bellucci.
Another former winner and British hope Andy Murray too completed his first round win in straight sets even though he faced a comparatively sterner test. The Scot won 6-4, 7-6 (3), 6-4 over Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan. Things got a little tight in the second set as there were six breaks of serve before Murray regained control of the match.
Fast and furious start to Petra Kvitova’s defense
Petra Kvitova returned to the scene of her greatest triumph in an emphatic fashion. The two-time Wimbledon winner took just 35 minutes to brush aside Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands with a 6-1, 6-0 scoreline.
The World No. 2 showed no signs of the viral illness which forced her out of the Eastbourne tournament last week and she won a whopping 28 out of 29 of her points on serve.
This was the fastest-completed WTA match this year.
Halep, Bouchard shocked
Eugenie Bouchard and Simona Halep’s 2014 semi-final match had given a peek into a future rivalry. But one year later, their return to the famed turf of SW19 did not prove to be a memorable one as both crashed out to opponents ranked outside the top 100.
106th ranked Jana Cepelova did not make much of a noise after shocking Serena Williams last year on the green clay of Charleston. But it all came together at Wimbledon for the young Slovak as she showed the exit door to World No. 3 Halep on Tuesday. Cepelova did it in style after coming back from a set down to beat the Romanian 5-7, 6-4, 6-3.
As for Bouchard, her woes continued. The Canadian has been mired in a slump for most of the year and could not do anything to turn around her fortunes. Bouchard had also been suffering from an abdominal injury and that made things worse. The 21-year-old was beaten 6-7, 4-6 by 117th-ranked Chinese qualifier, Duan Ying-Ying – a player who had never won a Grand Slam main draw match before.
Other big winners of the day:
On the men’s side, 2010 runner-up Tomas Berdych needed four sets to see off Jeremy Chardy while Jo-Wilfried Tsonga won in five sets over the dangerous Gilles Muller. Feliciano Lopez, Gilles Simon, Alexandr Dolgopolov, Fabio Fognini also won. Amongst the youngsters, Borna Coric and Jiri Vesely won while Jack Sock and Elias Ymer bowed out.
Among the ladies, German 10th seed Angelique Kerber made a thundering statement with a 6-0, 6-0 win over compatriot Carina Witthoeft. 2012 runner-up Agnieszka Radwanska, who is slowly regaining some of her lost confidence, carved out a 6-3, 6-2 win over Lucie Hradecka. 2013 runner-up Sabine Lisicki, Caroline Wozniacki, Ekaterina Makarova, Garbine Muguruza and French Open semi-finalist Timea Bacsinszky were some of the other winners on Day 2 of the Championships.
Djokovic, Wawrinka, Serena, Maria headline Wimbledon Day 3:
On Wednesday, defending men’s champion Novak Djokovic will continue to seek his third title at SW19. Also in action are the Williams sisters, Maria Sharapova and reigning French Open winner Stan Wawrinka.