The World no. 1 and second seed at Wimbledon 2014 Rafael Nadal reached the third round by avenging the defeat against Lukas Rosol from two years ago. The today’s opponents had met at the same stage of the Grand Slam tournament in 2012 with the tall Czech stunning the favorite in a five-setter. The history looked like it might repeat itself on the Centre Court this Thursday as the 28-year-old Brno native capitalized on the third break point at 4-4 in the opener and prepared a triple set point following an ace in the subsequent game. He put away a service winner to hold to love and move a set up.
The king of clay fell a set and a break behind as Rosol moved 4-2 ahead in the second one, yet the Spaniard clawed back in time to force a breaker. Even so, his rival nearly doubled the lead, but let the set point slip out of his hands before double faulting in the worst possible moment to let Rafa level the terms. The French Open title holder upped his game in the third set to break in the game three and hold on to the advantage with a minimum of fuss. The 52nd-ranked Czech showed no signs of recovering as he suffered a loss of serve in the initial game of the fourth set and could only come up with a break back point when Nadal was serving for his round of 32 ticket. The Spanish champion averted the danger and generated the third match point by smashing the eleventh ace. He put the match to bed a service winner later to win 4-6, 7-6 (6), 6-4, 6-4 and set up a clash against Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin.
Fifth seed Stanislas Wawrinka also faced a stern test when meeting Yen-Hsun Lu of Chinese Taipei at the All England Club this afternoon. The current Swiss number one was somewhat lucky to escape the first set defeat as he prevented the 47th-ranked adversary serving out the opener and rallied from 5-1 behind in the tie-break. Lu was only a point away from going a set up, but he wasted a 6-4 advantage by netting a couple of shots before Stan put away a forehand winner to move one nil ahead. The reigning Australian Open champion established a two-sets-to-love cushion by pulling off a five straight games run, but Lu reduced the lead by breaking Wawrinka three times in the third set. A closely-fought fourth set followed where the Swiss broke to love in the eleventh game and converted in second attempt for a 7-6 (6), 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 triumph. He will play Uzbek Denis Istomin next.
A seven-time Wimbledon titlist Roger Federer, seed four, made it to the round three without dropping a service game against Gilles Muller of Luxemburg, ranked 103rd. The Swiss Maestro recorded a comfortable 6-3, 7-5, 6-3 victory and will meet either Marcel Granollers or Santiago Giraldo in the following round.
Also through to the last 32 are ninth-seeded John Isner who beat Jarkko Nieminen 7-6 (17), 7-6 (3), 7-5 and seed fourteen Jo-Wilfried Tsonga after winning a two-day marathon against Sam Querrey 4-6, 7-6 (2), 6-7 (4), 6-3, 14-12.