American teen Coco Gauff continued her breakout run at Wimbledon Wednesday. Playing under the new Court 1 roof after a late court change, Gauff confidently and calmly dismissed 2017 semifinalist Madgalena Rybarikova 6-3, 6-3.
Gauff showcased her immense power — she lost just five points on first serve — and her speed in backing up her big win Monday over Venus Williams.
The 15-year-old has now won all five matches this week at Wimbledon (3 qualifying, 2 main draw) and all 10 sets.
“I think it wasn’t so much that my tennis improved, it was more my mindset,” Gauff said. “Because my mindset improved, my tennis definitely changed. I don’t think it was so much how many balls I hit in practice. It was more off court thinking how can I improve myself and improve the way I act on the court.
“It’s definitely been a challenge. I think I’ve kind of reached basically almost the best mentality I can get to. You always can improve.
“Right now I feel like the way I’m acting and the way I kind of feel inside… You can kind of fake it till you make it – but I’m not faking it, at least right now.”
Next was projected to be Madison Keys but the American fell apart — perhaps looking ahead to Gauff — to Slovenian Polona Hercog who returned to the Wimbledon third round after a quick 6-2, 6-4 win.
Karolina Pliskova upped her win streak to seven by winning 10 of the first 11 games then hanging on to beat Monica Puig 6-0, 6-4. The tricky Su-Wei Hseish will be next for the Czech who has never made the Wimbledon quarterfinals.
“I think was much better than the first round for sure today,” said Pliskova. “Little bit trouble in the end, but I think that’s normal. She also has some chance to play good tennis, so she played.
“I think was so far the best here. I felt the best here in Wimbledon today. The court was super nice, a little bit faster than the outside courts. So it was good.”
Elina Svitolina stay in the tournament but barely. Margarita Gasparyan was just points from the win in the second when after the Ukrainian leveled for 5-all, she fell and injured her left leg. The Russian tried to continue but eventually had to retire. Svitolina advanced 5-7, 6-5.
“Honestly, I was a little bit shocked. It’s never nice to get this when someone is injured like that. It puts you a little bit off,” Svitolina said.
“At the end, we’d expect that she would go and play. It happened that way and really unfortunate for her.”
Carolina Wozniacki avenged a French Open first round loss to Veronika Kudermetova 7-6(5), 6-3.
Simona Halep had to fight past countrywoman Mihaela Buzarnescu 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.
“I think I’m playing okay,” Halep said. “It’s always tough on grass, but it was a tougher match than first one, so it was good that I could win it. Also I had tough moments during this match. I lost the second set when I was leading the set. Then I just had to fight till the end and for every ball, which I’m really happy that I did. I felt confident on court. I felt also strong mentally.”
She now gets Victoria Azarenka who was an easy 6-2, 6-0 victory over Ajla Tomljanovic.
It’s going to be a big challenge for me, tough one, because she’s playing not very flat but she’s very aggressive,” Halep said. “So on grass it’s not that easy.
“I am confident I have my chance and for sure I will win it. I want to win badly every match I play.”
Maria Sakkari, Anett Kontaveit and Danille Collins were also winners.
Tomorrow, the big guns return with Serena Williams, Ash Barty, Petra Kvitova, defending champion Angelique Kerber and British No. 1 Johanna Konta.
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