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Swiatek, Pliskova reach Wimbledon last 16

Reuters/London
Filed on July 2, 2021
Poland's Iga Swiatek returns against Romania's Irina-Camelia Begu during their women's singles third round match on the fifth day of the 2021 Wimbledon Championships. — AFP


Former French Open champion Iga Swiatek stormed into the Wimbledon fourth round on Friday as her relentless pressure proved too much for Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu, who managed a solitary mark on the scoreboard in a 6-1 6-0 demolition.

Poland’s Swiatek, seeded seven, arrived at Wimbledon having previously won only one match on grass but she looked very much at home as she suffocated her opponent from the start to reach the last 16 with her third straight-sets victory.

The 20-year-old, who won the Roland Garros title in 2020, dropped only eight points on serve in the match and half of them came in just one game.

She broke her opponent twice to race into a 5-0 lead, before Begu finally held serve, and then showed some grit to go with the punishing consistency of her ground strokes when she saved three break points to hold and take the first set.

The second set was even more one sided as the Swiatek swept away the dying embers of Begu’s resistance to romp into the next round.

Meanwhile, eighth seed Karolina Pliskova beat Tereza Martincova 6-3 6-3 in the battle of Czechs on Court Two to move into the last-16 at Wimbledon on Friday.

Former world number one Pliskova fell at first hurdle in the tune-up tournaments in Berlin and Eastbourne last month but the 29-year-old has yet to drop a set at Wimbledon.

The last time the two met was in the first round of the U.S. Open in 2019 and there was little to separate them then with Pliskova advancing only after winning tiebreaks in two sets.

Although Pliskova made 36 unforced errors and nine double faults, she fired 30 winners past her compatriot who struggled with her first serve and managed to convert only one break point opportunity.

Pliskova, who has reached at least the quarter-finals of every Grand Slam barring Wimbledon, will play either American Sloane Stephens or Russian wildcard Liudmila Samsonova in the next round. — Reuters





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