The first week of Wimbledon 2018 was an interesting one that will be spoken of in hushed tones for a long time to come. With a number of seeded players getting knocked out, including world number one, Simona Halep, and Andy Murray withdrawing from this year’s play, fans are in a frenzy. Djokovic, Nadal and Federer, however, have continued to please fans and it has been great to see Serena Williams back on the court after a temporary break due to her pregnancy. Here is a day-by-day summary of the first week!
Day 1 started off Wimbledon as many fans predicted with Roger Federer winning against Dušan Lajović in a matter of just 79 minutes, giving his fans high hopes for him claiming his 9th Wimbledon title. Serena Williams, seeded 25, also made it clear to her fans that she was here to stay, by winning 7-5 6-3 to Arantxa Rus. The same could not be said for Grigor Dimitrov, world number 6, who lost to three-time Slam winner Stan Wawrinka 1-6, 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/5), 6-4. Another surprising outcome of day 1 was Sloane Stephens, the world number 4, losing to a shock 6-1, 6-3 defeat against Croatia’s Donna Vekic. Stephens’ fans were met with disappointment as they had high hopes for this being her year to win the slam.
Day 2 was filled with as many surprises with Dominic Thiem retiring due to injury and Diatchenko beating Sharapova, world number 24, 6-7 (3/7), 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 after more than three hours of tough play. Sharapova was playing the Wimbledon for the first time in three years after not playing in 2016 and 2017 and It was her earliest exit at a Slam since a first-round defeat at the 2010 Australian Open. Kvitova, who was a top contender for the Wimbledon this year also lost to Sasnovich in the first round by 6-4, 4-6, 6-0. Caroline Garcia seeded 6, was also defeated on day 2, going down 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 to Belinda Bencic. Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic breezed through to the next round by beating their opponents with scores 6-3, 6-3, 6-2 and 6-3, 6-1, 6-2 respectively.
Day 3 turned out to be another unfortunate day for seeded players with Caroline Wozniacki, number 2 seed, suffered a shock 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 loss to Ekaterina Makarova in the second round. S. Williams, however, after missing the Wimbledon last year due to her pregnancy, brought her A-game brushing aside Tomova in just 66 minutes. Stan Wawrinka, who holds 3 Grand Slam titles, was another to be eliminated, losing 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 7-6 (8-6) to Italian qualifier Thomas Fabbiano. Alexander Zverev, seeded number 4 struggled against American Taylor Fritz before play was suspended late on due to bad light on court one with the score 6-4 5-7 6-7.
Day 4 saw two players, Nadal and Djokovic sail through to the next round. Nadal defeated Mikhail Kukushkin 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 and Djokovic, despite needing treatment on his left knee, beat Horacio Zeballos, winning 6-1, 6-2, 6-3. Important victories also for Nick Kyrgios, John Isner, Angelique Kerber, and Simona Halep. However, Marin Cilic, ranked number 5, blew a two-set lead in his 3-6, 1-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3), 7-5 loss to Guido Pella, ranked at 82. Another disappoint development on Day 4 was that Garbine Muguruza, seeded number 3, lost 5-7 6-2 6-1 to Van Uytvanck, who demonstrated skill and determination.
On Day 5, both Federer and S. Williams once again showed the world why they deserved to be revered. Roger Federer beat Jan-Lennard Struff 6-3 7-5 6-2 in just over an hour and a half and Serena Williams won a tough match against Kristina Mladenovic 7-5 7-6(2). Alexander Zverev had a close call with Taylor Fritz but ultimately won 6-4, 5-7, 6-7 (0/7), 6-1, 6-2. On the other hand, Madison Keys and Venus Williams did not make it past day 5. The day ended with Only two of the top 10 seeds remaining in the women’s draw – number one Simona Halep and seventh seed Karolina Pliskova.
Day 6 saw Halep, world number 1, knocked out of the Wimbledon in the third round against Hsieh Su-We 6-3, 4-6, 5-7. It was also a bad day for Alexander Zverev, seeded number 4, as the German was knocked out by world number 138 Ernests Gulbis 7-6(2) 4-6 5-7 6-3 6-0, in a surprising turn of events. On the other hand, Djokovic overcame a slow start and managed to make it to the second week, beating British number one Kyle Edmund 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 in a little under three hours. Nishikori also advanced to the fourth round by beating Nick Kyrgios 6-1, 7-6 (3), 6-4. With the end of day 6 came also the end of week 1 of Wimbledon 2018.
With a number of seeded players and all-time favourites being knocked out, fans are disappointed. However, Nadal, Federer, and Djokovic in the men’s matches have performed extremely well so far and this could end up being the year for any one of them. This could be Federer’s 9th win or it could be Djokovic’s game making it clear that he is back in full form. On the women’s side of the court, Kerber, and S. Williams are giving their opponents a tough time. Williams has made it clear this week that motherhood isn’t going to keep her from playing her best and if she wins Wimbledon this year, she would equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles.