Sharapova Rolls But Clijsters and Watson Win Hearts

| June 25, 2012 | 0 Comments

It may be Maria Sharapova’s Wimbledon to lose but it is Kim Clijsters the fans are hungry to see.  Maria looked sharp on opening day. The top seed breezed past Australian Anastasia Rodionova 6-2, 6-3 in 70 minutes. Shortly after Sharapova left the court unseeded Kim Clijsters took center stage and subdued 18th seed Jelena Jankovic, who must have been wondering what she did wrong to draw such a first round opponent.  With six double faults in the 6-2, 6-4 win, Clijsters was far from her best, but she was the player the fans wanted packed in to see.

Maria Sharapova

Maria Sharapova wins first round at Wimbledon

The former number one has declared this will be her last Wimbledon.  Clijsters broke five times and was broken twice by Jelena.  Kim is well situated in the draw and will next play Czech Andrea Hlavackova, a 6-1, 6-2 winner over Taipei’s Kai-Chen Chang.  Kim does not appear to be tournament sharp or in her best condition but there is no doubting her talent.  Clijsters has never won Wimbledon but she reached the quarters in 2010 and is a four-time Grand Slam Champion.

Several matches remain to be completed tomorrow.  However, two Germans and 5th seed Samantha Stosur looked sharp.  15th seed Sabine Lisicki rolled over Petra Martic 6-4, 6-2.  Teammate Angelique Kerber, the 10th seed, stormed Lucie Hradecka 6-4, 6-1.  Stosur likes this surface and was efficient in downing Carla Suarez Navarro 6-1, 6-3. Li Na, the 11th seed Ksenia Pervak 6-3, 6-1.

Legend Kim Clijsters rose to the occasion on Day 1, but Elena Vesnina made quick work of four-time Wimbledon Champion Venus Williams 6-1, 6-3. It was a humbling loss for the American queen and leaves doubts about her place on the US Team in the Olympics.  After a second round exit in Paris, Venus is being stalked by a number of young Americans including two of today’s victorious youngsters Sloane Stephens and Jamie Hampton. Christine McHale will be finishing her match tomorrow. Playing young Brit Johanna Konta, the two were called off the court with the match at 7-7 in the third set.

As popular as Kim’s win and as sad as Venus’s loss, the fans got a big lift from a strong performance by the UK’s own Heather Watson.  The emerging star is through to the second round after defeating Iveta Benesova 6-2, 6-1.  Watson was crisp and well-focused.  She will next face America’s Hampton.  There were some popular wins in the ladies draw but there were none more popular than Watson’s.

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