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Novak Djokovic keeps up Wimbledon charge with 3-set win

London: Novak Djokovic isn't facing much of a test so far in the defense of his Wimbledon title. He's played three matches, won all in straight sets, and never dropped more than four games in

India TV News Desk [ Updated: July 03, 2015 22:41 IST ]
novak djokovic keeps up wimbledon charge with 3 set win
novak djokovic keeps up wimbledon charge with 3 set win

London: Novak Djokovic isn't facing much of a test so far in the defense of his Wimbledon title. He's played three matches, won all in straight sets, and never dropped more than four games in any set.

The top-ranked Djokovic disposed of Bernard Tomic 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 Friday on Centre Court to sail into the fourth round and bolster his bid for a third Wimbledon title and ninth Grand Slam championship.

"I was hoping that I can play better and better as the tournament progresses and that's exactly what is happening right now," said Djokovic, who extended his career record against Tomic to 4-0. "I think as I'm moving on through the tournament I feel more confident on the court."

Djokovic needed only 1 hour, 32 minutes to put away Tomic, serving 15 aces, breaking four times, never losing serve and making only 12 unforced errors.

" I am pleased with the way I'm playing, definitely," he said. "It's very close to where I want to be. Hopefully in the second week I can play even better."

He'll next face big-serving Kevin Anderson, the 14th-seeded South African, who beat Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 6-4, 7-6 (6), 6-3.

Also advancing were French Open champion Stan Wawrinka, who swept Ferando Verdasco 6-4, 6-3, 6-4; Richard Gasquet, who dismantled No. 11 Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 on Centre Court; and Belgium's David Goffin, who downed Marcos Baghdatis in straight sets.

Nick Kyrgios —the 20-year-old Australian who stunned Rafael Nadal here last year — served 34 aces and hit flashy winners from all over the court to upset seventh-seeded Milos Raonic of Canada 5-7, 7-5, 7-6 (3), 6-3 to reach the round of 16 for the second year in a row.

"I don't fear anyone," the 26th-seeded Kyrgios said. "I definitely feel I'm playing better tennis than last year."

In women's play, former champion Maria Sharapova beat 29th-seeded Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania 6-4, 6-3 and has yet to drop a set. The first woman to make it to the fourth round was American CoCo Vandeweghe, who beat former U.S. Open champion Samantha Stosur 6-2, 6-0. It's the first time the 47th-ranked Vandeweghe has reached the final 16 at a Grand Slam tournament.

Two other American women were eliminated: Belinda Bencic of Switzerland beat qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands, 7-5, 7-5, and French Open runnerup Lucie Safarova downed Sloane Stephens 3-6, 6-3, 6-1.

The battle on Court 2 between Kyrgios and Raonic featured two of the young stars of the game and two of the biggest servers in tennis. While Raonic was stolid and businesslike, Kyrgios was as flamboyant and expressive as ever.

He went for spectacular winners, bantered with the crowd, pumped his fists and shouted. He hit three aces in a row in two different games. He hit second serves at 124 mph. He waved his arms in the middle of a point that he lost. He hit a between-the-legs shot from close to the net that went long.

Kyrgios received a code violation in the second set after slamming his racket to the ground so hard it bounced over the back wall into the crowd. A male fan caught it and handed it back to him.

Kyrgios came out during the second set sporting a Wimbledon headband in the club's official green and purple colors — only to be told that it was too colorful for the tournament's dress code. So he turned the headband inside out and wore it that way for the rest of the match.

"They told me to turn it around, so I turned it around," Kyrgios said.

The match turned in Kyrgios' favor when he broke for a 6-5 lead in the second set. Raonic was at the net and poised for a forehand volley but let the ball go and watched Kyrgios' forehand pass fall in for a winner. Kyrgios hit three aces in a row in the next game to close out the set.

Raonic finished with 18 aces, but broke only once out of seven chances. Raonic had 62 total winners, one more than Kyrgios, but the Australian had only 13 unforced errors, compared to 21 for the Canadian.

Kyrgios next faces Gasquet, who thoroughly dominated Dimitrov in a match between two players with classic one-handed backhands. Gasquet extended his career record to 5-0 against Dimitrov, who reached the semifinals here last year but has slumped in recent months.

A year ago, Kyrgios rallied from two sets down and saved nine match points to beat Gasquet in the second round.

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