Top Seeds Sharapova, Djokovic Reach Wimbledon Fourth Round
Top-seeded Maria Sharapova defeated Su-Wei Hsieh of Taiwan in the third round of Wimbledon as the French Open champion tries to win back-to-back Grand Slam tennis titles.
Novak Djokovic, the men’s top seed from Serbia, defeated Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, 6-2 on Centre Court to reach the fourth round. Four-time Grand Slam champion Kim Clijsters also advanced.
Sharapova won 6-1, 6-4. The 25-year-old Russian captured her first Roland Garros title this year to go along with the championships at Wimbledon in 2004, the U.S. Open in 2006 and the Australian Open in 2008.
“She’s a really tricky opponent, she can be really aggressive and then changes up the pace,” Sharapova said in a televised interview.
The right-hander plays Sabine Lisicki in the fourth round. The 15th-seeded German, a semifinalist last year, beat Sloane Stephens of the U.S. in three sets today.
“That’s a tough one,” Sharapova said. “She’s a really good grass-court player.”
With the roof on Centre Court closed after rain delayed early matches, Djokovic failed to convert any of his five break points in the first set against Stepanek, the oldest man left in the draw at 33. Stepanek converted his lone break point of the set.
“He played a terrific first set, he was very aggressive,” Djokovic said in a televised interview.
Djokovic got a break in the second set and didn’t struggle afterward, ending the match with 12 aces and six breaks of serve.
“It was a tough match, but I think I played the second, third and fourth set extremely well,” Djokovic said. “He’s a talented and experienced player who has been playing on the tour for many years. He’s one of the few that comes to the net after the first serve.”
In another third-round match today, six-time champion Roger Federer of Switzerland is playing France’s Julien Benneteau.
Clijsters, who plans to retire after the U.S. Open, advanced to the fourth round after Russia’s Vera Zvonareva quit the match with the Belgian right-hander up 6-3, 4-3. Clijsters is seeking her first Wimbledon title.
“It’s a pleasure to be part of a second week at a Grand Slam, especially Wimbledon,” Clijsters said.
Agnieszka Radwanska, the third seed from Poland, beat Britain’s Heather Watson, while Christina McHale of the U.S. lost to Angelique Kerber, the eighth seed from Germany.
Sam Querrey beat Canada’s Milos Raonic to reach the third round of Wimbledon a year after an elbow injury caused him to miss the tournament.
The 24-year-old American defeated the No. 21 seed 6-7 (3- 7), 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (10-8), 6-4 in a match that started yesterday. Querrey reached the fourth round at the All England Club in 2010.
“I feel like I’m playing well now,” Querrey told reporters. “Hopefully after the summer my ranking can be back in the top 20. It can take a year or even longer for people to get back where they are.”
Raonic, 21, was trying to make it past the second round of the grass-court Grand Slam event for the first time.
Viktor Troicki of Serbia beat Argentina’s Juan Monaco, the 15th seed, in straight sets. Eighth-seeded Janko Tipsarevic is taking on Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny, and a Tipsarevic victory would give Serbia three men in the fourth round of a Grand Slam for the first time.
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