Unlike his previous game where his opponent retired after 40 minutes, Novak Djokovic played all three sets Wimbledon this time for his win and advancement.
The three-time champion advanced to the third round by beating Adam Pavlasek 6-2, 6-2, 6-1 Thursday, two days after his opening match ended early when his opponent retired with an injury.
Djokovic won the Wimbledon title in 2011, ’14 and ’15. But he has not won a major title since completing a career Grand Slam at the 2016 French Open.
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In his opening two matches at the All England Club, Djokovic has only lost eight games.
“It’s perfect. Exactly what I want,” Djokovic said. “I don’t want to have any five-set matches in there.”
Djokovic will next face Ernests Gulbis. The unseeded Latvian defeated Juan Martin del Potro 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 (3).
Roger Federer and Angelique Kerber were scheduled to play later on Day 4 at Wimbledon.
Federer, a seven-time champion at the All England Club, will play on Centre Court against Dusan Lajovic in the second round. The top-ranked Kerber will face Kirsten Flipkens on No. 1 Court.
Grigor Dimitrov, Gael Monfils, and David Ferrer also reached the third round. Ferrer advanced when opponent Steve Darcis retired with an injury while trailing 3-0.
Darcis is the eighth man to retire during a match this week. The Belgian took a medical timeout after 18 minutes of play and was unable to continue.
Two-time major champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, seeded seventh, advanced to the third round in the women’s draw along with ninth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska and 24th-seeded CoCo Vandeweghe.
Two players previously eliminated from the tournament were handed fines on Thursday.
Bernard Tomic of Australia was fined $15,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct two days after he spoke about feeling “a little bit bored out there” during his match.
Daniil Medvedev of Russia, who threw a handful coins in the direction of the chair umpire after a second-round loss on Wednesday, was given three fines totaling $14,500.
Bernard Tomic was fined $15,000 at Wimbledon and dropped by his racket sponsor Thursday – not for something he did during his first-round loss, but for what he said during a news conference afterward.
The penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct was announced two days after the 24-year-old Australian was beaten by Mischa Zverev 6-4, 6-3, 6-4, then spoke to the media about feeling “a little bit bored out there.”
Tomic also said Tuesday that he “just couldn’t find any motivation” to compete this year and acknowledged that when he called for a medical timeout against Zverev, he did so not because of an injury issue but to “try to break a bit of momentum.”
Racket maker Head issued a statement via its Twitter feed on Thursday saying: “We were extremely disappointed with the statements made at Wimbledon by one of our sponsored athletes, Bernard Tomic. His opinions in no way reflect our own attitude for tennis, our passion, professionalism, and respect for the game.”
The statement concluded: “Therefore, we have decided to discontinue our collaboration with Bernard Tomic.”
The fine amounts to more than a third of Tomic’s prize money: First-round losers at the All England Club this year earn 35,000 pounds (about $45,000).
Tomic has not reached the quarterfinals at a Grand Slam tournament since losing at that stage at Wimbledon against eventual champion Novak Djokovic in 2011. That year, at age 18, Tomic became the youngest man to reach the quarterfinals at the All England Club since 1986, when Boris Becker won the title.
Tomic reached a high of No. 17 in the ATP rankings in 2016; he entered Wimbledon at No. 59.
“I feel holding a trophy or, you know, doing well – it doesn’t satisfy me anymore,” Tomic said Tuesday. “It’s not there. I couldn’t care less if I make a fourth round (at the) U.S. Open or I lose (in the) first round. To me, everything is the same. I’m going to play another 10 years, and I know after my career I won’t have to work again.”
Daniil Medvedev threw a handful coins in the direction of chair umpire Mariana Alves after his second-round loss at Wimbledon on Wednesday.
The 49th-ranked Russian repeatedly apologized during his post-match news conference, saying that he was not trying to imply that Alves was biased.
“I was just disappointed and (did) a stupid thing,” said Medvedev, who earned headlines for a decidedly different reason Monday, beating three-time major champion Stan Wawrinka in the first round.
When his 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 2-6, 6-3 loss to Ruben Bemelmans ended, Medvedev shook hands with his opponent and Alves. But then he grabbed his wallet from his bag and tossed the coins toward the bottom of the official’s chair.
He was unhappy with one of the calls early in the fifth set
“If he wants to be (peeved) about that, that’s his decision,” Bemelmans said. “It happens in tennis. You should get over that.”
Medvedev, who is 21, said he did not immediately apologize to Alves after the match.
He said he would accept any punishment handed down.
“Maybe in the match, during the match, I thought that it was a bit not in my favor, but right now I can just say that it happens everywhere in every sport,” Medvedev said. “There are referees, and they can make some mistakes, but me as a tennis player, I (make) some mistakes, too. One of them was, for example, after the match. I just have to apologize.”
Victoria Azarenka walked to the baseline, preparing to serve, when a man shouted from the upper reaches of No. 3 Court, “Come on, Mom!”
It wasn’t her son, Leo, born in December, but it shows the 27-year-old former No. 1’s return to competition has caught on among the public.
Between Azarenka and Serena Williams, who announced in April she is pregnant with her first child, two former Grand Slam winners will attempt to balance their careers with motherhood.
Although Azarenka’s second-round victory over Elena Vesnina on Wednesday was only her fourth competitive match since December, she said she has already begun conversations with WTA officials about facilitating arrangements for child care.
If needed, the WTA will provide health and wellbeing support to players who are mothers, as well as other physiotherapy and counseling.
“From my own power, I’ll do anything to make that happen because I think it’s really important,” Azarenka said. “The guys do have that luxury of having the nurseries and stuff at every event, and I think it’s time for women to have the same benefit.”
The travel has been the most difficult part thus far, Azarenka said. Although Leo is “actually a very good traveler,” preparing for flights has been stressful.
Carving out time for tennis has also been troublesome. Last week, she posted a photo on Instagram of Leo, lying on a blanket and chewing on a plastic credential while she practiced.
To help take care of her son during the tournament, Azarenka has her mother, Alla, and her boyfriend, Billy McKeague, with her.
“I have absolutely no idea how it feels to have a baby on tour or how she manages that, you know?” ninth-ranked Dominika Cibulkova said. “It’s not easy. It’s something – it must be completely different.”
The last mother to win the singles title at Wimbledon was Evonne Goolagong Cawley, who won her third title at the All England Club when she defeated Chris Evert in 1980. Mandy Minella, who lost in the first round to Francesca Schiavone on Monday but will play in the doubles tournament, is four months pregnant.
Azarenka, a two-time Australian Open champion, reached the semifinals at Wimbledon in 2011 and 2012, when she ended the year at No. 1.
After defeating CiCi Bellis in the first round, she encountered the 16th-ranked Vesnina, who had not beaten Azarenka in seven previous meetings.
The eighth was no different. Azarenka broke her opponent late in the first set and early again in the second, and Vesnina, after taking a medical timeout to address a lingering back injury, double-faulted twice in the deciding game. Azarenka won 6-3, 6-3.
“It was not easy,” Vesnina said. “I cannot say she is playing now as she was playing when she was No. 1 in the world. She needs some time to adjust, some time to feel her game and where she is right now. It’s not easy, but a couple more matches and I’m sure she’ll be back.”
Azarenka, who will face Heather Watson of Britain in the third round, said she has had an ongoing discussion with Williams about her experiences. She also spoke this week to Kim Clijsters, whose third child was born in October.
“It wasn’t a long conversation,” Azarenka said, “but it’s nice to see that some of my colleagues have children and we have just much more in common than just tennis.”
Novak Djokovic attempted to diffuse any tension between himself and John McEnroe after the tennis great compared the world No. 4 to Tiger Woods.
The Serb has seen a dip in form over the past year, losing all his Grand Slam titles and slipping from the top of the ATP rankings.
McEnroe compared the situation to that of golfer Woods’ and suggested the 12-time Grand Slam champion could go ‘off the rails’ like the American did after being caught up in a marital scandal.
But Djokovic refused to hit back at the seven-time Grand Slam champion and insisted he hadn’t taken it personally.
‘I have heard about it today,’ he said. ‘Look, you know, John has a complete right to say – anybody, really, in the world has a right to say what they want, and I respect that right.
‘Especially coming from John, because he’s someone that has earned that right because of who he is and what he has meant to the sport and what he still, you know, is representing as a former player and still being very active on the Tour.
‘And he’s very well known for his, you know, kind of bold comments and not really caring too much about being politically correct but saying whatever is on his mind.
‘That’s all I can say. I really don’t take anything personal. I always got along very well with John.
You know, I guess whether that’s his opinion or criticism or something else, I’m not really sure. But in the end of the day, I respect everything he says.’
When pushed on what the reason for the personal attack was, Djokovic was quick to crack a joke that he had hit a serve at the three-time Wimbledon champion during one of his matches at the All England Club.
‘I always got along very, very well with John,’ he added. ‘We even practiced a few years ago before one of my matches in US Open, and was always talking nicely about me.
‘As I said, I really don’t take it in a negative way anyhow. It’s fine. He has his right to say the things he wants to say. I don’t necessarily need to agree with that. But it’s his right. So I don’t know where was the basis, and he was just maybe making a comparison. I’m not really sure.
‘When I was warming up for my first match on the Centre Court, he was giving an intro, talking to the camera, and I served and the serve went straight at him as I was playing. I don’t know. Maybe it’s because of that. Maybe he thought it wasn’t a joke, and I was joking, I was trying to hit him.
‘I don’t know. I take it very lightly. I don’t think there was any kind of really wrong intention from his side towards me.’