Roger Federer had little trouble advancing to the second round of the third Grand Slam event of the season. Serena Williams had to work a little harder as she made a successful return to Wimbledon.The defending men’s champion, Roger Federer, shook off the scorching London heat to open his campaign for a ninth Wimbledon title with a 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 triumph over Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic on Centre Court on Monday.
Federer needed just 79 minutes to extend his winning record at the All England Club to 93-11. This was the second consecutive year that the now 36-year-old Swiss has knocked the No. 57-ranked Serbian out of the tournament at the All England Club.
“I’m happy to be back at Wimbledon,” Federer said afterwards.
“I was really able to enjoy the match out there because I got off to a good start. When you get off to a good start in set one and two, you’re able to just enjoy the moment.”
Federer now moves on to face either Lukas Lacko of Slovakia or the French qualifier Benjamin Bonzi in the next round.
Serena back on grass
On the women’s side, Serena Williams, seeded at 25 this year despite being only 181st in the WTA rankings, got off to a slow start on Court One, but she recovered to prevail 7-5, 6-3 over the 107th-ranked Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands.
“It’s a great feeling to be back, it’s been a couple of years since I played on grass, so it is difficult trying to find the rhythm,” she said afterwards.
“I don’t know if I’m relieved, more motivated, but I am happy to get through that,” added Williams, who returned to action at Roland Garros last month after taking time off to have her first child. However, that comeback ended with her withdrawing due to injury in the fourth round.
The 36-year-old American next faces either Bulgarian qualifier Viktoriya Tomova or Czech wild card Tereza Smitkova.
The women’s draw had the first big tournament shock as No. 4 seed Sloane Stephens exited in a 6-1, 6-3 upset to Croatia’s Donna Vekic.
First Germans through to second round
Both Philipp Kohlschreiber and Jan-Lennard Struff ensured that German tennis fans would have a cheering interest in the second round. Kohlschreiber defeated Evgeny Donskoy of Russia 6-2, 6-4, 7-5, while Struff got past Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 3-6, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5), 6-1. On the women’s side, Andrea Petkovic beat Shuai Zhang of China 6-4, 4-6.
In the evening session, Germany’s 57th-ranked Tatjana Maria also pulled off an upset, beating the fifth seed, Elina Svitolina, 7-6 (3), 4-6, 6-1.
pfd/dv (dpa, AFP)