London: If there was one hero at the All England Club on Tuesday, then it was the Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios. The 144 ranked wildcard entrant played the match of his life, ending the dreams of world No. 1 Rafael Nadal. He shocked the Spaniard 7-6 (7-5), 5-7, 7-6 (7-5) 6-3.
Kyrgios showed no fear as he completed a remarkable fourth-round victory with a thumping ace.
Roger Federer’s immaculate Wimbledon continued and Maria Sharapova’s ended prematurely, but in different ways they both displayed what makes them great champions.
Federer was imperious as he glided serenely into the quarter-finals for the 12th time in his career, outclassing Spain’s Tommy Robredo 6-1, 6-4, 6-4. The 32-year-old, yet to drop a set in four rounds, dazzled the crowd with his artistry, making the game look ludicrously easy against the 22nd best player in the world.
Women’s fifth seed Sharapova, on the other hand, did not play well by her own high standards and her hopes of celebrating the 10th anniversary of her sole Wimbledon title with another one, were wiped away in a 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 4-6 fourth-round defeat by Germany’s Angelique Kerber.
With her power game slightly off-key, French Open champion Sharapova trailed 2-5 in the decider but with her back to the wall she fought like a wounded tiger, saving six match points before finally succumbing.
Sunshine ushered in day eight of the championships and, after falling behind because of rain, organisers sought to re-calibrate the men’s and women’s singles draws on a day usually reserved for the women’s last eight. Lucie Safarova led a Czech charge into the semi-finals in the bottom half of the women’s draw, beating Russian 22nd seed Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-1.
A round back, last year’s runner-up Sabine Lisicki survived a shoulder injury scare to beat Kazakhstan’s Yaroslava Shvedova 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. The German 19th seed took a medical time-out in the middle of a game at 1-1 in the decider, having her shoulder massaged while lying on the turf, but recovered to reach the quarter-final for the fifth time in five visits. She will play Romania’s “Miss Consistency” Simona Halep after the third seed raced to a 6-3, 6-0 win over Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas.
All eyes have been on defending champion Andy Murray’s regal progress through the draw so far this year but Federer again issued a reminder that, when his game is flowing on a grass court there are few better sights in world sport. Eyeing a record eighth Wimbledon title, the maestro has yet to drop a set or a service game.
Robredo never stood a chance as Federer avenged a humiliating US Open defeat against the Spaniard last year. “I feel physically in tip top shape,” Federer said. While Federer is facing an unusually busy schedule at Wimbledon because of weather interruptions, fellow Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka will be playing a third match in three days on Wednesday. The fifth seed beat Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 without any major alarms although the match ended with the players in a heated debate at the net.
Big-serving Milos Raonic celebrated Canada Day by becoming the first man from his country to reach the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in the professional era, beating Japan’s 10th seed Kei Nishikori 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7-4) 6-3.
Serena Williams’s disappointing tournament came to a worrying conclusion when the American had to retire from her third round doubles match with sister Venus.
The 32-year-old served a whole game of double-faults and needed her blood pressure checked on court by a doctor before being led away, apparently close to tears.
Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-ul-haq Qureshi did all they could but still failed to get past the determined pair of Vasek Pospisil and Jack Sock in the rain-hit second-round doubles clash on Tuesday.
The contest, spilling over to the second day, became lively after Bopanna and Qureshi won the fourth set to level the scores, but ended up losing 7-6 (7-3), 6-7 (5-7), 3-6, 6-4, 5-7 against the unseeded Canadian-American combine in three hours and 13 minutes.
In mixed doubles second round, Bopanna and his Czech partner Andrea Hlavackova, seeded seventh, defeated the British pair of Colin Fleming and Jocelyn Rae 6-4, 7-5.