Holder Williams struggles to reach second round

June 24th, 2008 - 10:13 pm ICT by IANS  

London, June 24 (DPA) Defending champion Venus Williams struggled for almost an hour in a marathon first set before knocking back a British challenge in the first round of the Wimbledon Championships Tuesday. The seventh seed then spent a final 21 minutes claiming victory as she gained momentum for a defeat of number 197 teenager Naomi Cavaday 7-6 (7-5), 6-1.

The win propelled the American on her way as she bids for a fifth trophy at the All England club after playing in only a handful of events this patchy season.

Cavaday, 19, accounted well of herself despite losing in the opening round for the third straight year.

Williams improved to 52-7 at the event where she has enjoyed the majority of her career success.

“She played a great match and put a lot of pace on ball,” said Williams, competing at Wimbledon for the 12th consecutive year. “She forced some errors from me.

“But I felt confident throughout, I always felt like going out on Centre Court.”

Williams fired six aces and broke three times, losing her own serve once early in the contest.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in World |