Wimbledon 2014: Novak Djokovic passes first major test

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Djokovic won in four sets
Djokovic won in four sets.

Novak Djokovic came through a minor scare in his second round match at Wimbledon on Tuesday; but David Ferrer was the major casualty on the third day’s play at SW19 in the men’s draw.

Mark Bollons reports live from Wimbledon

Djokovic, the world number two and top seed for the tournament, was made to work for his four-set win over Radek Stepanek, claiming a 6-4, 6-3, 6-7, 7-6 victory in a match that only had two breaks of serve. The veteran Czech was in good form, coming off the back of a win over Andy Murray at Queen’s, but ultimately fell short against the ever-impressive Serb.

The same can’t be said of seventh seed Ferrer, whose dislike for grass court tennis is well-known. The Spaniard had been ill in the build up to Wimbledon, limiting his opportunities to practice on the surface, and it showed out on Court Two as Andrey Kuznetsov recorded a five-set victory.

Murray & Dimitrov

There was a straightforward victory for reigning champion and number three seed Murray, who destroyed world number 92 Blaz Rola to the joy of the crowd out on Court One. His 6-1, 6-1, 6-0 victory came in under an hour and a half, helping the British number one keep fresh for bigger challenges that lie ahead.

Whilst Murray faltered at Queen’s a fortnight ago, Grigor Dimitrov lifted the famous trophy and he’s continued his fine form in the opening days of Wimbledon. The number 11 seed also claimed a straight sets win, beating Luke Saville 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 on Centre Court.

Berdych through; Gulbis out

One of the matches of the day saw sixth seed Tomas Berdych overcome highly-rated Bernard Tomic in four-sets. The erratic Australian showed touches of class - and why he so often frustrates - in defeat, with a hip problem ultimately having an impact towards the end of their encounter. It finished 4-6, 7-6, 7-6, 6-1.

Ernests Gulbis was the other major casualty in the top half of the men’s section, with the 12th-seeded Latvian never able to find his best against Sergiy Stakhovsky. The Ukranian was a comfortable three-set winner out on Court 12.

Other results; Tsonga-Queery classic

Elsewhere, Russian Mikhail Youzhny was a surprise loser to Jimmy Wang, but there were wins for Marian Cilic and Kevin Anderson. One player who had been showing good form leading up to this tournament was Marinko Matosevic, but the Australian lost in five-sets to Jeremy Chardy on a bad day for the men from down under.

Only one match remains uncompleted from overnight, and what a match it is. Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and America’s Sam Queery are locked at 9-9 in a fifth set decider, and they’ll have to come back and do it all again on Thursday. 14th seed Tsonga also took two days to conclude his first round match, meaning he will have played on all of the first four days of this championship.

Women’s Results

Former champions Petra Kvitova was an emphatic winner out on Court One, with the sixth seed claiming a 6-2, 6-0 victory over Mona Barthel. Second see Li Na was also a convincing straight sets winner.

Britain's Naomi Broady couldn't match Caroline Wozniacki on Court One, with the 16th seed claiming a 6-3, 6-2 victory. With Tara Moore also losing out to Vera Zvonoreva, that leaves home hopes hanging on Heather Watson, who takes to Centre Court second on Thursday.

Williams & Radwanska

Five-time champions Venus William showed she has the fight for another run at the title, claiming a tough first set against Kurumi Nara before romping home in the second. The American is a dangerous 30th seed.

Agnieszka Radwanska, the number four seed, went about her business with a 6-4, 6-0 win against Casey Dellaqua on Centre, but Victoria Azarenka is out after the number eight seed lost 7-5 in the third against Bojana Jovanovski.

David Ferrer
Novak Djokovic
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