Rybarikova stuns Pliskova
Originally published on 06/07/17 00:00
It was an outstanding display from the Slovakian as she claimed her first top 10 win of the year. The 28-year-old trailed by a set and a break, but she remained composed and turned the match around in dramatic fashion.
Rybarikova, on the comeback trail after wrist and knee surgeries, absorbed the pace of her opponent’s punishing groundstrokes and used her variety to good effect. It’s been a productive few weeks on grass for the Slovakian, who won titles in Ilkley and Surbiton in the build-up to Wimbledon.
“It’s very difficult to play Karolina, because she plays very well,” said Rybarikova after her shock victory. “I was not that confident but I’m so happy to get through this match. I’ve had two surgeries and was out for seven months, I’m in the third round of Wimbledon and I just beat Karolina Pliskova. It’s absolutely amazing.”
No.9 seed, Agnieszka Radwanska, battled back from a precarious position to defeat Christina McHale 5-7 7-6(7) 6-3. The Pole saved two match-points in a pulsating second set tiebreak before taking the decider by six games to three.
‘I’m very happy that I managed to come back in the score and turn it around in the third set,” said Radwanska. “After the tiebreak I felt a little bit more confident and I played more aggressively in the third set as well."
Angelique Kerber edged a fascinating contest with the Kirsten Flipkens 7-5 7-5.
The crafty Belgian had chances to take the opener from the top seed but she failed to capitalise on her initial good work. It was a duel filled with lengthy exchanges but it was the German who stepped up a level when necessary. Last year's finalist said: "It was a really good match from both of us and it was a litle bit up and down – especially in the first set when I was down 3-5.
"I'm happy about my performance and it's nice to get through to the next round. It's really difficult to play against a player like Kirsten, she played the slice so well and I was having to bend my knees really low. I think my serve was important in the last game."
CoCo Vandeweghe continues to make serene progress as she defeated Tatjana Maria 6-4 6-2. The No.24 seed, who reached the last eight in 2015, said afterwards: "Tatjana is a very tricky player. She constantly puts pressure on you, whether it's to make a pass or continue a point through. She makes it very difficult and constantly tests your nerve.”
Garbine Muguruza enjoyed a straightforward 6-1 6-4 victory over Yanina Wickmayer and Svetlana Kuznestova downed Ekaterina Makarova 6-0 7-5. Sorana Cirstea, Petra Martic, Polona Hercog, Zarina Diyas and Lesia Tsurenko are also safely through to the next stage.