Chan Hao-ching yesterday got her women’s doubles campaign off to a winning start on the grass courts at Wimbledon, while fellow Taiwanese Chang Kai-chen bounced back from her opening-day defeat in the singles to also advance to the second round.
Ninth seeds Chan and Monica Niculescu defeated Veronica Cepede Royg of Paraguay and Raluca Olaru of Romania 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 in 1 hour, 44 minutes on Court 4 at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London.
The Taiwanese-Romanian duo saved just one of four break points and converted five of 13, winning 79 of the 145 points contested.
Chang and Sloane Stephens defeated Chinese duo Duan Yingying and Liang Chen 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 in 1 hour, 56 minutes on Court 8.
The Taiwanese-American pairing saved 10 of 16 break points and converted seven of 13, winning 97 of the 196 points contested.
In men’s singles, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic barely had to break sweat to make winning starts at Wimbledon, as their injury-hit opponents retired hurt amid a plague of withdrawals that blighted the first round on Tuesday.
Federer is chasing a record eighth Wimbledon title and he was already well on top at the start of his 19th campaign at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club when Alexandr Dolgopolov was forced to quit with an ankle injury.
The world No. 3 raced to 6-3, 3-0 in 43 minutes on Centre Court before the Ukrainian limped off.
Federer, who hit his 10,000th career ace in the eighth game of the first set, is next to face Dusan Lajovic for a place in the last 32.
“I felt like there was a bit of a letdown from the crowd. They couldn’t believe that it happened again, exactly the same situation,” said Federer, who recorded his 85th win at Wimbledon, passing the mark he shared with Jimmy Connors. “The chairman said: ‘You and Novak should go and play for another set-and-a-half.’ I feel for the crowd. They’re there to watch good tennis.”
Having unexpectedly won the Australian Open in January before taking the clay-court season off to rest, Federer, in a record-equaling 70th Grand Slam appearance, is the favorite to take the Wimbledon crown for the first time since 2012.
“Everybody’s got a chance to win Wimbledon and for me it’s no different. I already achieved my dream to be back here healthy. Now we’ll see how far I can go,” Federer said.
Three-time Wimbledon champion Djokovic was leading 6-3, 2-0 when Slovakian world No. 47 Martin Klizan retired after just 40 minutes on Centre Court due to a calf problem.
The 30-year-old Serb is next to face Adam Pavlasek of the Czech Republic for a place in the last 32.
It was the kind of trouble-free first round Djokovic would have been hoping for after the most turbulent period of his career, the 12-time major winner losing in the Australian Open second round and the French Open quarter-finals.
In total, there have been seven retirements from the men’s draw over the first two days, sparking talk that players were taking part, even though they were injured, to collect the ￡35,000 (US$45,203) check for first-round losers.
Serbia’s Janko Tipsarevic quit after just 15 minutes, trailing 5-0 to Jared Donaldson when he suffered a leg injury.
“Lots of players fight through Challengers to get to the main draw of a [Grand] Slam. They have to pay coaches and their teams,” Tipsarevic said.
Milos Raonic, last year’s Wimbledon runner-up, advanced to the second round with a 7-6 (7/5), 6-2, 7-6 (7/4) win against Jan-Lennard Struff.
Argentina’s Juan Martin Del Potro, a semi-finalist in 2013, defeated Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-4 as the 29th seed moved toward a potential third-round classic against Djokovic.
Australia’s Bernard Tomic said he had lost his “respect” for tennis following his lackluster 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 loss to Mischa Zverev.
“I don’t know why, but I felt a little bit bored out there, to be completely honest,” Tomic said.
French 22nd seed Richard Gasquet slumped to a 6-3, 6-4, 5-7, 6-2 loss against Spain’s David Ferrer.
Austrian eighth seed Dominic Thiem blitzed Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 6-4, 6-3, while 2010 Wimbledon runner-up Tomas Berdych defeated Jeremy Chardy 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-4.
In the women’s draw, Karolina Pliskova underlined why she is the bookmakers’ favorite to win Wimbledon as the world No. 3 crushed Evgeniya Rodina 6-1, 6-4.
Former world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, who has never been past the last 16 at Wimbledon, beat Timea Babos 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.
With defending champion Serena Williams sidelined while she prepares to give birth to her first child, the race to win the women’s title is the most wide open in a generation.
World No. 1 Angelique Kerber, last year’s Australian and US Open winner, is among the favorites after reaching last year’s final, which she lost to Williams.
She showed glimpses of her best form, seeing off American qualifier Irina Falconi 6-4, 6-4 in 87 minutes.
NIGHT OF FIRSTS: In the first official game at the Tapei Dome on Sunday, not only did Taiwan notch a win over South Korea, they also recorded the stadium’s first hit and RBI The Philippines yesterday dominated Thailand 14-4 at the Taipei Dome in the opening game of Group B on the second day of the Asian Baseball Championship, while Palestine pipped Hong Kong 3-1 in Taichung in Group A. World No. 35 the Philippines put themselves on the board early, racking up two runs in the first inning, followed by two in the third, one each in the fourth and fifth, and three in the sixth. Thailand, ranked 43rd in the world, did not get on the board until the top of the seventh inning, when they tried to stage a comeback, putting up
TROUNCED: Taiwan beat Palestine in six innnings on day three of the Asia Baseball Championship, while it took just five innings for Japan to defeat Thailand Taiwan yesterday beat Palestine 19-0 at the Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium on the third day of the Asian Baseball Championship. The Group A game was over in six innings after a 6:03pm start. Taiwan went on the offensive from the first inning, scoring three runs, but the real damage was done in the third inning, when they scored seven. The Palestine players are all studying or working in the US. In another duel between two unevenly matched teams, Japan thrashed Thailand 16-0 in their late Group B game at the Taipei Dome. They won in five innings thanks to the mercy rule, which states
NATIONS LEAGUE: England crushed Scotland 6-0, but their Olympic hopes were ruined when the Netherlands beat them on goal difference with a 4-0 win against Belgium Germany and the Netherlands on Tuesday booked their places at the UEFA Women’s Nations League finals , where they are also to fight for spots at next year’s Paris Games, but there was heartbreak for England whose hopes of competing in the Olympics were dashed, despite beating Scotland 6-0. Germany drew 0-0 in Wales, but secured their passage thanks to Iceland’s 1-0 win over Denmark. The Netherlands needed a 95th-minute goal from Damaris Egurrola to see them to a 4-0 win over Belgium which meant they edged England on goal difference in Group A1 after the FIFA Women’s World Cup runners-up hammered
SANTOS RELEGATED: Pele’s former team finished with a loss that prompted fans to attempt to invade the pitch, forcing the players to run for the locker rooms One of the most exciting seasons of the Brazilian league ended on Wednesday with the most stable team of the year defending their title and the club that was home to Pele relegated for the first time. Palmeiras drew 1-1 against Cruzeiro to be crowned Brazilian champions for the 12th time. Endrick, 18, scored his 11th goal of the season to give Palmeiras an early lead and Nikao equalized in the 80th minute at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte. Santos’ relegation following a 2-1 home loss to Fortaleza was another setback for the club at the stadium where Pele’s funeral took place