Defending Champ Muguruza suffers shock defeat Nadal, Djokovic advance

Spain’s Garbine Muguruza serves during her second round loss against Belgium’s Alison Van Uytvanck. (REUTERS/Toby Melville)

LONDON, (Reuters) – Defending Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza suffered a shock defeat in the second round on Thursday, losing 5-7 6-2 6-1 to unseeded Belgian Alison van Uytvanck.

Third seed Muguruza came from a break down to win the first set but saw her feeble challenge fizzle out in the next two as van Uytvanck blew the Spaniard away with her big serving.

The defeat means that five of the top six women’s seeds have now exited the tournament in four days, with top seed Simona Halep the only player in that list to make the third round.

Halep earlier overcame a scare in the first set to beat China’s Zheng Saisai 7-5 6-0. The Romanian world number one takes on Hsieh Su-wei from Taiwan next.

“I had (the) pressure (a) little bit of (possibly) losing that (first) set but I didn’t panic. I think this was the best thing that I did. I was just calm,” Halep said.

Kyle Edmund defeated American Bradley Klahn 6-4 7-6(0) 6-2 to move into the third round of Wimbledon for the first time in his career. Up next for the 23-year-old Briton is 12-times grand slam winner Novak Djokovic.

“I’m looking forward to it. I’ve never been to the third round at Wimbledon,” Edmund said. “Novak’s one of the best players in the world, he’ll go down as one of the best players of all time.”

Fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro thumped Spaniard Feliciano Lopez 6-4 6-1 6-2 in 95 minutes to move into the third round.

Victory for the towering Argentine meant that he matched compatriot David Nalbandian’s tally of 19 Wimbledon match victories and 86 grand-slam match wins.

Briton Johanna Konta was beaten in straights by world number 33 Dominika Cibulkova, losing 6-3 6-4 in 78 minutes.

Konta’s defeat means she has not reached the third round at a major since last year’s Wimbledon.

World number one and top seed Simona Halep reeled off 10 games in a row after falling behind 5-3 in the first set to beat Zheng Saisai of China 7-5 6-0. Up next for the Romanian is Hsieh Su-Wei from Taiwan.

Novak Djokovic hit 31 winners, including 15 aces, in his 6-1 6-2 6-3 victory over Horacio Zeballos of Argentina on Court Two.

With his 60th match win at Wimbledon, the Serbian ensured he reached the third round for the 10th consecutive year.

Australia’s Nick Kyrgios also advanced in straight sets, beating Dutchman Robin Haase 6-3 6-4 7-5 in 96 minutes.

Second seed Rafa Nadal beat Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin 6-4 6-3 6-4 in two hours 23 minutes to advance.

The Spaniard has now entered the third round at Wimbledon for the eighth time in his career, but for only the third time since he finished runner-up in 2011.

Former world number one Angelique Kerber said she was looking forward to her first grasscourt meeting with 18th seed Naomi Osaka in the third round of Wimbledon.

Kerber has a 2-1 head-to-head record against the Japanese player, with all three matches played on hard courts. Kerber lost their only grand-slam clash at last year’s U.S. Open.

“I’m actually looking forward to playing against her on grass… I know for sure I have to play good tennis and play better than the last two matches here,” 11th seed Kerber said after beating American Claire Liu 3-6 6-2 6-4.

Third seed Marin Cilic was stunned 3-6 1-6 6-4 7-6(3) 7-5 by Argentina’s world number 82 Guido Pella in three hours 12 minutes. The Croatian, runner-up in 2017, last bowed out in the second round in 2013.

John Isner saved two match points in the fifth set to overcome Belgian Ruben Bemelmans 6-1 6-4 6-7(6) 6-7(3) 7-5 in three hours 46 minutes to reach the third round.

The big-serving American also fired 64 aces, the third-most at Wimbledon, as he extended his winning streak against qualifiers at grand slams to 10 matches.

Swiss Stan Wawrinka suffered a shock 7-6(7) 6-3 7-6(6) defeat by world number 133 Thomas Fabbiano in a match that resumed on Thursday after rain halted play on Wednesday.

Italian Fabbiano saved three set points against three-time grand-slam winner Wawrinka in the second set to advance to the third round of a major for just the second time in his career.

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