Big names ease through in SW19

Published: Friday 3rd July 2015 by The News Editor

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Novak Djokovic and Stan Wawrinka cruised through their third-round tests at Wimbledon as Australian dark horse Nick Kyrgios staked his own claim.

While the big two in the top half of the draw were untroubled, both Djokovic and Wawrinka winning in straight sets, there were big-name exits as last year’s losing semi-finalists departed.

Kyrgios avenged his defeat to Milos Raonic from last year’s quarter-finals and Grigor Dimitrov bowed out to Richard Gasquet, whose tennis was as easy on the eye as ever, treating Centre Court to all the best aspects of his luxurious game in claiming the straight-sets scalp of the Bulgarian.

Djokovic eased to a 6-3 6-3 6-3 victory over Australian Bernard Tomic, and the Serbian top seed, bidding to defend his title, has yet to drop a set.

He said: “I’m pleased with the performances so far.

“The second week is obviously always more challenging, more difficult than the first week. But I’m ready for it now.”

He faces big-serving South African Kevin Anderson on Monday, and Djokovic said: “I have two days. I’m going to work on the court, get myself recovered and ready for a challenge that is presented in the second week.”

Fourth seed and recent French Open winner Wawrinka, who stunned Djokovic in the Roland Garros final, sauntered to a 6-4 6-3 6-4 win against Spaniard Fernando Verdasco.

That sets up a shot at Belgian David Goffin next, and Wawrinka said: “It’s great, for sure, to be in the second week. I haven’t been broken in three matches. My game is there, in general, but also the confidence is there.”

Kyrgios was in sparkling form to oust Canadian seventh seed Raonic. His aptitude on grass is not in doubt, with the manner of his victory over Rafael Nadal last year showing he loves the surface, and 34 aces and a flurry of stunning passing shots showed Kyrgios to be a truly multi-dimensional exponent, one who could soon be pushing for the Wimbledon title.

The 20-year-old was momentarily involved with one fan who he felt was chiding him, and took inspiration from another, in a Batman T-shirt, who was urging him on at crucial points during his 5-7 7-5 7-6 (7/3) 6-3 win, which set up a shot at Gasquet next.

“I think if I play the right style of tennis, obviously if I’m serving well, feeling good out there, I think I can go close,” said Kyrgios.

“I have a tough task ahead. Gasquet is playing some really good tennis. Beating Dimitrov in straight sets is not an easy task on the grass.”

Gasquet turned on the style to sink the hopes of 11th seed Dimitrov, his 6-3 6-4 6-4 margin of victory rich reward for a performance that charmed spectators inside the tournament’s main show court.

The Frenchman lost in round two to Kyrgios last year, relinquishing a two-set lead and going down 10-8 in the fifth.

He has no qualms about calling their Monday tussle a revenge mission.

“It was an incredible match,” he said, looking back 12 months. “It was very tough because I had nine match points and I couldn’t do it, so it was a big match. Of course it was tough to lose. He played incredible.

“Of course after that he won against Nadal. It was a big thing for everybody. Of course it’s revenge.

“Last year, even if I lost, it was a match we will never forget, me and him.”

Published: Friday 3rd July 2015 by The News Editor

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