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Wimbledon Day 4 Women’s Recap: Rybakina, Pegula, Kenin In Action On Day 4

Elena Rybakina ahead of WTA Montreal

The weather gods were kind as a full day of play was finally possible on day four of the women’s singles at Wimbledon. There was plenty of drama. Former quarterfinalist Sloane Stephens lost a tough three set match against Donna Vekic. But who else looked good and bad in their round 2 matches, and which match was the best of the lot?

Wimbledon Day 4 Recap

Who looked good

Elena Rybakina progressed to the third round with a performance she will be mostly happy with in a 6-2 7-6 win over Alize Cornet. Ryabkina was excellent in the first set, before floundering slightly in the second set, perhaps slightly losing her rhythm when Cornet had a nasty fall, with it being unclear at times whether she would finish the match. The Frenchwoman to her credit bravely soldiered on to finish the match. Rybakina will hope to be more clinical on the second serve return in her next match, where she won just 26% of the points.

Jessica Pegula looked more assured today than in her first-round match. She ran out a comfortable 6-1 6-4 winner against Spaniard Cristina Bucsa. Bucsa won two games in a row from 5-2 down in the second set to massage the score somewhat, but in truth the American never looked in any trouble. The fourth seed is starting to look more secure on the grass.

Sofia Kenin backed up her upset win over Coco Gauff with a 6-4 6-3 victory over Xinyu Wang. Kenin had to battle for long periods of the match, with her Chinese opponent hitting a higher number winners over the course of the match. But the American showed her experience and tennis IQ to come through. She was particularly good on her second serve, mixing it up effectively to outfox Wang on many occasions, in the end winning more points on her second serve than first serve.

2019 semifinalist Elina Svitolina followed her success against Venus Williams with a 6-1 1-6 6-1 success against Elise Mertens. Svitolina was impressively strong on serve in the first and the decider, not conceding a single break point in either set. Mertens level did fluctuate somewhat, but the Ukrainian’s solid tennis in the first and last sets meant the 28th seed would have found it difficult to best Svitolina regardless.

Who looked bad

Day four saw the exit of three women who had momentum heading into Wimbledon. 17th seed Jelena Ostapenko won the Birmingham Classic a couple of weeks ago, but was a narrow 4-6 7-6 6-4 loser to Sorana Cirstea, who has now reached a Grand Slam third round on 18 occasions. Cirstea is a quality player, but 2018 semifinalist Ostapenko would have expected to win. Perhaps unsurprinsgly she was second best in the tight moments of the match.

Barbora Krejcikova was the runner-up to Ostapenko in Birmingham, but she retired when 6-3 4-0 down to teenage sensation Mira Andreeva due to a left leg injury. Krejcikova was struggling with her game before the injury anyway, and Andreeva would have fancied her chances of winning. But the injury ended her hopes for good. Let’s hope the injury is nothing too serious.

Katerina Siniakova’s performance was probably the biggest surprise of the day. The recent BAD Homburg Open champion was out of sorts from start to finish against Lesia Tsurenko, swiftly succumbing to a 6-4 6-1 loss. The Czech player leaked 32 unforced errors, more than three times the amount of winners she hit in a below par showing.

Who deserves a special mention

Anett Kontaveit played her final ever professional singles match on Court 18. Her singles career ended with a 6-1 6-2 defeat to Marie Bouzkova. It is such a shame to see the former Australian Open quarterfinalist have to retire due to injury problems at the age of just 28. The whole tennis world should wish her well in her next chapter.

Match of the day

Belinda Bencic vs Danielle Collins is a close second for match of the day. The two players matched each other throughout the match before Bencic held her nerve better to comfortably win a final set tiebreak. The final score was 3-6 6-4 7-6.

But the fifth seed Caroline Garcia and 2021 US Open finalist Leylah Fernandez played the most dramatic women’s match seen so far at the Championships. Frenchwoman Garcia edged it 3-6 6-4 7-6 after more than two and a half hours on Court Three.

Fernandez made light of her reputation among many as a counterpuncher, hitting 31 winners during the contest, just four less than Garcia, who is better known for her big hitting. The Canadian’s level did not drop. Garcia earned the win by finding her range enough times in the final set tiebreak, and was close to tears immediately after the match after previously losing some close matches this season.

Main photo credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports

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