Last year’s Wimbledon and No. 2 seed Vera Zvonareva was unceremoniously bounced 6-2, 6-3 on Friday at Wimbledon by No. 32 seed Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria as favorites Venus Williams, Caroline Wozniacki and Maria Sharapova advanced.
The Zvonareva loss was a reverse of last year’s semifinals. After a slow start, Zvonareva then fell and inured her foot, for which she needed medical attendance and a wrapping.
Top 10 seeded winners were the No. 1 seed Wozniacki cruising past France’s Virginie Razzano, No. 4 Victoria Azarenka topping No. 25 Daniela Hantuchova 6-3, 3-6, 6-2, the No. 5-seeded Sharapova defeating Brit wildcard Laura Robson 7-6(4), 6-3, No. 8 Petra Kvitova downing No. 29 Roberta Vinci in straights, and No. 9 Marion Bartoli coming from a set down to defeat Spaniard Lourdes Dominguez Lino.
“I’ve been playing very well my two matches here and hopefully I can keep it up,” Wozniacki said. “I’m serving well, I’m moving well, and I’m moving the ball around well. I won the junior title here in 2006 and Eastbourne [WTA event] two years ago. Hardcourt is my best surface, but grass is good for me as well.”
The elder Williams sister, seeded No. 23, stomped Spaniard Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez 6-0, 6-2.
“I felt like I was attacked enough in that second round match. I knew how she was going to play today, I’ve played her before on the grass, so I thought my best bet was to make sure I took the net away from her. It worked out really well,” Williams said. “As long as I find a way to win that round, I’m good.”
Unseeded Russians continued to sneak through the draw, as unheralded Ksenia Pervak upset No. 11 Andrea Petkovic, and veteran Nadia Petrova defeated Kateryna Bondarenko, both in straights.
“I just had a black day,” Petkovic said. “I didn’t feel the ball at all and didn’t move well. And when I started waking up, she played better in the important moments. I felt like the match would turn, but she played better than me.”
Matches to look for Saturday at the All England Club are (1) Caroline Wozniacki vs. (27) Jarmila Gajdosova, (26) Maria Kirilenko vs. (7) Serena Williams, unseeded Czech Klara Zakopalova vs. (5) Maria Sharapova, (24) Dominika Cibulkova vs. (16) Julia “Gorgeous” Goerges, (9) Marion Bartoli vs. (21) Flavia Pennetta, and Melinda “The Fifth Element” Czink vs. (20) Shuai Peng.
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