Wimbledon: Heather Watson’s heartwarming speech after finally reaching last 16

Heather Watson

Heather Watson reached the last 16 of a Grand Slam singles tournament for the first time after beating Kaja Juvan in straight sets at Wimbledon

The former British number one triumphed over the spirited Slovenian to set up a clash with Germany’s Jule Niemeier on Monday. 

After clinching the first set via a fiercely contested tie-break, the Brit grew in confidence and sealed the second in far more convincing fashion. 

There appeared to be a late wobble when Juvan manufactured multiple break points as Watson tried to serve out the match, but the Guernsey-born star held her nerve, much to the delight of those watching on Court One. 

Watson, who had previously only reached the third round of Wimbledon on one occasion, was jubilant at the end of the match and delivered an incredibly heartwarming on-court interview. 

“Always some drama”

Over the years, Watson has let a number of leads slip at Wimbledon –– most famously back in 2015, when she served for the match against eventual champion Serena Williams. 

And while the Brit had no such problems today, she still saw the funny side of the situation. 

As the 30-year-old soaked in the roars of the crowd, she raised her hands aloft and laughed to herself –– clearly feeling both ecstatic and relieved at the same time. 

“It wouldn’t be me if there wasn’t a bit of drama at the end,” she said. “And wow, what an atmosphere. There is nowhere I would rather be and you guys got me over the line. 

“I felt she was playing her best tennis at the end. I wasn’t that nervous. But fourth round for the first time, I’m so happy.

She added: “It means everything, playing here at home in front of you guys, the atmosphere is everything. Please can all of you come back for my fourth round next week.” 

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Watson turned professional back in 2010 and has won four WTA titles. 

Despite a promising junior career, however, the Brit has always struggled to perform in majors and has a 32 per cent win record across the four Slams. 

Now though, there is no reason why Watson can’t reach at least the quarter-finals of Wimbledon this year. 

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Indeed, her next opponent, Niemeier, has also reached this stage of Wimbledon for the first time. 

The German knocked out second seed Anett Kontaveit in the second round and has dropped just one set so far.

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