Weary Nadal wins Wimbledon battle of walking woundedJune 27th, 2010 - 1:47 am ICT by IANS
By Bill Scott
London, June 27 (DPA) Rafael Nadal was tested over five sets for the second time in three matches as he came through a battle of walking wounded 6-4, 4-6, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2, 6-3 against German Philipp Petzschner for a fourth-round place at Wimbledon Saturday.
The second seeded 2008 champion was treated on several occasions for arm and leg problems as he ground out his victory against the number 41 in three-and-three-quarter hours. Petzschner had two fifth-set visits for his left thigh as he played in his third consecutive five-setter.
Nadal, winner of all the major clay events, has already had a long season and could be starting to feel his winning pace. He now has a day off Sunday as Wimbledon takes its traditional rest.
“The match was very difficult for me,” said the Spaniard, who was last tested prior to Wimbledon over five sets at the Australian Open.
“He was serving unbelievable for most of the match. I changed strategy a bit in the fourth set, staying behind the baseline to return. That gave me some more time to try and put the ball inside. In the end, I played well.”
Nadal said that he will have his problems checked but plans to be fit when the event resumes Monday against Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu, a winner over Thiemo De Bakker of the Netherlands, 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (8-6), 6-7 (8-10), 6-4.
Big-hitting Swede Robin Soderling, the sixth seed, hammered Brazilian Thomaz Bellucci 6-4, 6-2, 7-5 to reinforce his role as a danger-man on grass.
With Nadal and top seed Roger Federer both taken to five sets, Soderling has strolled. “I haven’t dropped a set yet, even though maybe I was a little bit lucky to win the third set today.”
But I’m serving well, I’m hitting the ball well. So far I’m feeling really good,” he said.
Spain’s ninth seed David Ferrer beat Jeremy Chardy of France 7-5, 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 7-5 while tenth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat German Tobias Kamke 6-4, 6-1, 7-6 (7-1).
In women’s play, Serena Williams returned from exile after a previous match in the wilderness, crashing down 20 aces in a 6-0, 7-5 rout of Slovak Dominika Cibulkova.
“It feels good, serving that well feels awesome,” said the winner.
Three-time champion Williams had been quietly seething after failing to get a Centre Court match date in front of Britain’s visiting Queen Elizabeth on Thursday, winning that second-round contest on a semi-outside court.
But the top seed was scheduled back in a more accustomed place at the showcase venue for what turned out to be a brief 68-minute visit to reach the fourth round.
“I thought that I could have played better in the second set,” said Williams. “I just kind of came off the gas a little too much. You can’t do that in big Grand Slams like this.”
Williams, who between herself and sister Venus has won eight of the last 10 Wimbledon editions, will Monday play 2004 champion Maria Sharapova, who beat Barbora Strycova 7-5, 6-3.
Sharapova beat Williams in the final six year ago.
Danish third seed Caroline Wozniacki defeated Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 6-4. Two seeds exited at the hands of Czechs as Klara Zakopalova beat number 10 Italian Flavia Pennetta and Petra Kvitova stopped 14th-seeded Victoria Azarenka 7-5, 6-0.
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- Australian Open: Djokovic marches on; Roddick retires (Roundup) - Jan 19, 2012
- Nadal, Li advance to 4th round at French Open - Jun 03, 2012
- Federer overwhelms Melzer to set up Soderling showdown - Sep 07, 2010
- US Open: Top seeds flare up in second round - Sep 02, 2011
- Gilles Simon goes down to Xavier Malisse at Wimbledon (Roundup) - Jun 29, 2012
- Olympic tennis: Federer plays Murray in repeat of Wimbledon final (Lead) - Aug 04, 2012
- Sharapova reaches US Open semi-finals - Sep 06, 2012
- Federer throttles Mathieu to enter second week of US Open - Sep 05, 2010
- US Open: Azarenka, Williams showdown for women's title - Sep 08, 2012
- US Open: Wimbledon champion Kvitova falls at first hurdle - Aug 30, 2011
- US Open: Djokovic in second round - Aug 29, 2012
- Federer fires through to set up Paris rematch; Murray out - May 31, 2010
Tags: australian open, danger man, david ferrer, jeremy chardy, jo wilfried tsonga, leg problems, number 41, paul henri mathieu, philipp petzschner, quarter hours, rafael nadal, robin soderling, roger federer, scott london, sixth seed, thiemo de bakker, thomaz, tobias kamke, traditional rest, wimbledon