Sorry this is a little late – the traditional Wimbledon day of rest has made me lazy! Here’s my wrap for Wimbledon’s first Saturday.
On the men’s side, we had a slug fest between Andy Roddick and Jurgen “Tuna” Melzer (annoyingly showed on tape delay here on the West Coast) and a love fest between Andy Murray and the crowd on Centre Court. Victor Troicki was the Scot’s sacrificial lamb, losing 6-2, 6-3, 6-4.
At least Murray’s keeping us entertained with his tennis player-snack name game: Lleyton Chewit, James Flake (appropriate), Boris Doubledecker, Dorito Starace, Juan Martin del Popcorn (Andy’s favorite), Vania Kingsize Mars Bar, Gilles Muller Fruit Corner, Novak Yorkie-ovic, John McEnrolo, Cod Woodbridge, Mardy Fishcakes, Prawn Borg, Martina Haggis, Mince Spadea, Egg Rusedski, Spotted Dick Norman. (via The Telegraph)
Dorito Starace! That one cracks me up. I can’t think of one for Roger or Venus to save my life, but I’m sure a British tabloid will oblige soon enough – it’s what they do, right?
I’d forgotten all about Gilles “smoked” Simon, but he’s into the Round of 16 – beating Victor Hanescu Saturday in straights. Oft-forgotten Juan Carlos Ferrero “Rocher” continues his run on grass, beating Fernandonut Gonzalez in five. Tommy Burger Haas beat both the Badluck Bug and Marinated Cilic in an epic five-setter, Berdych beat Davydenko and Wawrinka needed four sets to put away Jesse Levine, who was up a set and a break early on. Lleyton Chewit stays on course as the sentimental favorite and Igor Andreev and Radek Stepanek are also through. (Click here for full men’s results)
One of the biggest “upsets” of the day on the women’s side was young Sabine Lisicki’s win over French Open champ (and birthday girl) Svetlana Kuznetsova. I put upset in quotes because it’s obvious that Sveta hates the grass courts. Too bad for Kuzy fans, but we’re in store for a great Round of 16 between Lisicki and Caroline Wozni(sn)acki, a rematch of this spring’s Charleston “Chew” final.
Kuznetsova, who turned (just) 24 on Saturday, won’t let the loss spoil her good time, saying that “it’s definitely still a great day.” Wonder if she’s jetting back to Moscow to celebrate with her BFF, Marat “Sweetness” Safin? I don’t blame her for losing if this is her consolation prize:
Thanks to “Tootsie” Dootsiez at All I Need is a Picket Fence for finding these awesome photos!
Best match of the day – Jankov-icky vs. Oudin – especially if A. you like drama and B. you’re American. (Click here for my full review of the match.) You got to hand it to J.J., even when she loses, she’s always good for a quote:
Q. Do you think it was heat stroke or dehydration or what?
JELENA JANKOVIC: I don’t know. It’s as well some woman problems, as well. It’s not easy being a woman, you know, sometimes. All these things happen. What can I do? I tried my best.
I’m impressed with Jelena’s bravery – for wearing a see-through white dress while Aunt Flo’s a visitin’!
Her countrywoman, (Ban)Ana Ivanovic, surprised naysayers with a straight sets victory over French Open semifinalist, Sam(wich) Stosur. Think she’s happy about it?
Ana may be training with Adidas player development gurus Sven Groeneveld and Darren Cahill, but she’s learning grass court tennis from the Master:
ANA IVANOVIC: Yesterday I watched Federer play. I think I can learn a lot from him, just the way he plays on the grass. I think grass is such a specific surface, and you really have to understand it to do well. And this is the first year that I feel, you know, I’m sort of starting to use grass for my advantage, and, you know, try to work it.
Federer does that so good. So it was great to see that, and it gives me encouragement that I’m actually in the right way.
Venus Williams was at her dominating best, beating Carla Suarez Navarro 6-0, 6-4. I was hoping for more tennis, but Venus had her mind made up: “I was determined to really run away with it,” she said. So she did.
A-mealy Mauresmo did well, too, beating Flavor Pennetta in two sets. The Frenchwoman is so used to crippling disappointment and pressure, that she didn’t bat an eyelash when being asked this rude question:
Q. Are you going to surprise us all and do brilliantly next week?
AMÉLIE MAURESMO: I hope.
Amelie meets Dinara Safina next, who breezed through Kirsten Flipkens and is into the second week of Wimbledon for the first time in her career. Here in the States, Dinara is about as conspicuous as the dark green walls lining Centre Court. Her name keeps popping up in the draw, but I’ve never seen her playing. I’m sure that’s just fine with Dinara.
Agnieszka Radwanska also beat Li Na-na. Click here for more women’s results.