Novak Djokovic beats Denis Kudla, Andy Murray loses to Denis Shapovalov, program
World number one Novak Djokovic claimed his 75th Wimbledon match on Friday as the fight against Andy Murray slipped to his first outing since 2005.
Defending champion Djokovic survived a nervous third set to defeat 114th-ranked US qualifier Denis Kudla 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (9/7) to secure a place in the fourth round of a Grand Slam for the 55th time.
Djokovic, chasing a record-breaking 20th major, went through the first two sets but then had to defend 1-4 and also 1/4 in the tie-breaker on Court One, saving a point from set in the process.
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“It’s the hallmark of every professional athlete that you never give up,” said Djokovic, who is halfway to becoming just the third man in history – and the first since Rod Laver in 1969 – at complete the Slam schedule.
“I always try to give my best, especially when playing one of the biggest tournaments.”
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Kudla seemed to have the crowd on his side and Djokovic let out a loud roar during the match in apparent response to the negativity.
When asked if he felt he was getting the respect he deserved from the crowd, he replied, “In the heat of the moment, these things happen. You release the pressure, the stress, the emotion that you feel on the court.
“Sometimes you might be looking for a little support, or sometimes you just want to let it go. This is what happened to me.
Next for Djokovic is Chilean 17th seed Christian Garin who beat Spaniard Pedro Martinez 6-4, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.
Murray suffered his first Wimbledon outing in 16 years when the two-time champion was knocked out by world number 12 Denis Shapovalov.
Murray, who has been locked in a long battle with hip and groin injuries and is now ranked at 118, lost 6-4, 6-2, 6-2.
It was the first time the 2013 and 2016 champion lost in the third round since making his debut at 18 in 2005.
22-year-old Canadian Shapovalov will face Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut for a place in the quarter-finals.
“Playing against a legend like Andy today was an inspiration to me,” Shapovalov said. “I told him on the net that he was my hero.
“Achievements aside. The first set we played was super intense and after that I was able to maintain the level and it dropped a bit.
Former world number one Murray, who entered the singles tournament for the first time since 2017, was only playing his eighth game on the main tour in 2021.
World number 24 Ons Jabeur became the first Tunisian woman to advance to the round of 16, beating 2017 champion Garbine Muguruza 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 on the back of 44 winners.
Muguruza saved 24 of 29 break points, but still failed to break the spirit of Arab pioneer Jabeur who won despite vomiting at the end of the Royal Box on center court as it was used for the match.
– Stomach problem –
“I actually have a stomach problem. I have inflammation, ”Jabeur said.
“It’s been going on for a while. It probably bothers me with stress.
Jabeur will next face seventh-seeded Pole Iga Swiatek, who was the first player in the round of 16 with a 55-minute 6-1, 6-0 demolition of Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu.
Swiatek, the 2018 junior champion, had won just one turf match on the main circuit before Wimbledon.
“It’s hard to compare my previous years on grass, because in 2019 I was weaker physically,” said Swiatek, who was beaten in the first round at Wimbledon in 2019.
“I didn’t really have an idea of how to play on grass. This time it’s much, much better, so I just developed overall.
In a widely open draw among women, Swiatek is just one of three top 10 seeds alongside Ashleigh Barty, who plays third round on Saturday, and second seed Aryna Sabalenka. .
Sabalenka reached the round of 16 for the first time, beating Colombian qualifier Maria Camila Osorio Serrano 6-0, 6-3.
Sabalenka will then face her compatriot Elena Rybakina, the 18th-seeded Kazakh who beat Shelby Rogers 6-1, 6-4.
Former world number one Karolina Pliskova made the last 16 for the third time with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over fellow Czech Tereza Martincova.
Pliskova will meet Russian wildcard Liudmila Samsonova who beat former US Open champion Sloane Stephens 6-2, 2-6, 6-4.
Samsonova, who won the title in Berlin after passing qualifying on the eve of Wimbledon, fired 33 winners against Stephens’ eight.
The Russian has now won 10 successive matches on grass.
Sebastian Korda marked his Center Court debut with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory over Briton Dan Evans.
Korda’s father, Petr, was a quarter-finalist in 1998, while last weekend his sister Nelly won her first major golf tournament and grabbed the world number one standings.
He will play against Khachanov on Monday when he turns 21.