Guido Pella claimed another Wimbledon scalp as he dumped out last year's runner-up Kevin Anderson in straight sets in the third round.

Pella is now enjoying his best ever run at a grand slam, but he is no stranger to upsets at the All England Club.

In 2018, he knocked out 2017 finalist Marin Cilic and now, having climbed the rankings considerably in the past year, he repeated the trick against Anderson.

The South African, beaten by Novak Djokovic in the final last season, went down 6-4 6-3 7-6 (7-4).

Anderson took just one of nine break point opportunities and rued his missed chances.

"Obviously I didn't take my chances on break points. That's probably one of the key stats," he said. "Right from the first game, my break point percentage converted was really low today.

"Sometimes just winning a few of those can really change a match. Even though it was straight sets, tennis is a game where a few points can really change the direction of a match.

"It was definitely a tough one. It was very difficult at times out there."

Pella will face Milos Raonic (15) in the next round.

 

NO COMPLACENCY FROM NOVAK

Defending champion Djokovic overcame a scare against Hubert Hurkacz and now faces the unseeded Ugo Humbert. He will not take anything for granted, though, despite a lack of top-10 seeds in his half of the bracket.

"It's a grand slam. Certainly, it's a surprise not to have any top-10 player left in my side of the draw," he said. "At the same time, respect to everyone who won against those guys and top seeds.

"My attitude towards every next opponent is not going to change because he's not ranked as high as someone else."

Humbert ended the challenge of talented youngster Felix Auger-Aliassime – a player Djokovic had earlier raved about.

 

AUGER-ALIASSIME EMBARRASSED

Auger-Aliassime might have blushed at Djokovic's praise had he got through. Instead, it was his performance against Humbert – in a 6-4 7-5 6-3 defeat – that had him feeling uncomfortable.

"Pressure got to me and it got to a point where it was a bit embarrassing," he said. "It was just tough. I just wasn't finding ways.

"I think he just did what he had to do. It was solid. From my end, it was pretty embarrassing."

 

DAVID DOWNS DANIIL

Two other upsets on Friday saw Roberto Bautista Agut overturn Karen Khachanov as David Goffin defeated Daniil Medvedev.

Goffin trailed 4-1 in the fifth set but still progressed, explaining: "It was an amazing feeling. But I felt that I was a little bit, I think, the better player during the whole match.

"If you see all the rallies and how I felt during the match, I was feeling good and, during the rallies, I was a little bit more aggressive."

Benoit Paire and Fernando Verdasco – Goffin's next opponent – both advanced, too.

Cori Gauff's incredible Wimbledon run continued with a remarkable recovery to defeat Polona Hercog 3-6 7-6 (9-7) 7-5 on her Centre Court debut.

The 15-year-old became the youngest qualifier at the All England Club in the Open Era and then dumped out idol Venus Williams in the first round.

Another victory followed against Magdalena Rybarikova and the confident Gauff repeated claims she aimed to win the whole tournament.

That dream bid looked set to end on Friday as she faced match point in the second set against Hercog, but Gauff suddenly and spectacularly rediscovered her best form to turn the match on its head and bravely battled through.

Simona Halep lies ahead in the fourth round, representing a significantly tougher test, yet Gauff has risen to each and every challenge so far.

After a tentative start, Hercog edged in front when she correctly appealed an out call in the corner of the court to see break point replayed, outmanoeuvring the American for the lead.

A hold to love cemented the advantage and Gauff, still finding her feet, saw a set slip away from her for the first time at the tournament with a pair of double-faults and another break.

And Hercog was in complete control when the teenager scuffed into the net to trail again at the start of the second, part of a run of seven straight games for the more experienced player.

But Gauff showed incredible grit to dig in when facing match point on Hercog's serve, recovering to force her first break points of the match, taking the second and levelling the set.

The pressure was building on Hercog heading into the tie-break and, after the pair four times traded mini-breaks, Gauff executed a crucial smash at the end of an epic rally to set up the decider.

The teenager kept pushing and Hercog went wide from a second break point, but an extremely sloppy service game ceded that advantage when two games from victory.

But Gauff would not be beaten and rallied again, attacking Hercog time and again and, with her first match point, seeing a lob from the Slovenian land long.

Novak Djokovic booked a place in Wimbledon's fourth round after beating Hubert Hurkacz in four sets.

The defending champion was not at his best for large periods as the 22-year-old pushed him hard on No. 1 Court on Friday.

Djokovic took the opener, but Hurkacz fought back by clinching a high-quality second before the Serb's class told, sealing a 7-5 6-7 (5-7) 6-1 6-4 victory.

The number one seed will next face either Canada's rising teenage star Felix Auger-Aliassime or Ugo Humbert of France.

At 5-5 in a tough first set Djokovic scented blood, with Hurkacz slipping to 0-40 before battling back into the game only to send a desperate forehand narrowly long at the end of an extraordinary rally, handing the top seed the advantage.

Djokovic, earlier involved in a minor row with the umpire over the colour of his cap, subsequently closed out the set but was still stuck in second gear during the second, having to save a set point at 6-5 down.

The defending champion won the first point of the breaker against serve, but Hurkacz got back on terms with another stunning point before Djokovic dropped a double-fault to make it 2-1 to the Pole.

Djokovic dug deep but, with the Wimbledon crowd cheering the Pole on, Hurkacz improbably levelled the match at a set apiece by thumping home after sending his opponent wide with an excellent serve.

Hurkacz's level dropped thereafter, however, and Djokovic recovered his composure to find an extra gear and quickly blast his way through two rapid sets to assert his dominance and secure passage.

 

Nick Kyrgios said he wanted to hit Rafael Nadal "square in the chest" after crushing a forehand into the Spaniard during his Wimbledon loss.

Nadal closed out a hard-fought 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-3) victory over Kyrgios in an entertaining second-round clash on Thursday.

But the Spanish 18-time grand slam champion appeared to be annoyed when Kyrgios blasted a forehand into him from behind the baseline in the third set, winning the point and opting not to apologise.

Kyrgios, 24, stood by his decision not to apologise to Nadal for the incident.

"Why would I apologise? I mean, the dude has got how many slams? How much money in the bank account?" the Australian told a news conference.

"I think he can take a ball to the chest, bro. I'm not going to apologise to him at all."

Asked if he aimed at Nadal, Kyrgios responded: "Yeah, I was going for him. Yeah, I wanted to hit him square in the chest. Like, he's got decent hands."

Nadal, who will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the third round, accused Kyrgios of playing dangerously by hitting the blistering forehand.

"Honestly, it's not about what I feel or what I don't feel. Honestly, it's about we are in a game that the history of this sport is about respect and is about playing fair during the whole time," he said.

"I don't say Nick does this stuff to bother the opponent, but it's true that sometimes he's dangerous. When he hit the ball like this, it's dangerous. It's not dangerous for me, it's dangerous for a line referee, dangerous for a crowd. When you hit the ball like this, you don't know where the ball goes.

"I know he's a big talented player, but I am a professional player, too. I know when you hit this kind of ball, the ball can go anywhere. This time the ball went in, almost hit me, no problem. I am professional, so I know how to avoid this.

"But another one, the ball goes straight to the back. So [it could] have been a dangerous moment for the line umpire. That ball hits an eye or something like this, it's a problem. That's it.

"It's not about I am angry about him at all. It's about I want to play a match of tennis. Sometimes it's difficult."

Jay Clarke explained his decision to team up with "probably the biggest name in the draw" after snubbing Wimbledon mixed doubles partner Harriet Dart for Cori Gauff.

Clarke will link up with 15-year-old sensation Gauff rather than Dart after a late change, informing his fellow Briton of the decision by text message.

Gauff has created headlines after incredibly defeating idol Venus Williams on her way to reaching the third round of the women's draw.

Dart brought attention to the matter by encouraging reporters to ask Clarke of his reasons for the switch, although she had no wish to discuss it further after a singles win over Beatriz Haddad Maia on Thursday.

Clarke was also in action, losing in straight sets to second seed Roger Federer, and was asked for the reason behind the change.

"It was kind of a last-minute thing," he told the media. "I heard a lot about people changing last minute to make sure they get in. Obviously there was a thing with Andy [Murray] and Serena [Williams] wanting to play.

"And I wasn't sure. We weren't told that we'd have the wildcard in again. Obviously there are all these pairs that don't normally play and I know there were only four wildcards.

"I made the decision a few days ago now to play with Coco, because, wildcards aside, you play with a big name or a past champion. I made the decision to play with probably the biggest name in the draw at the moment."

Clarke also revealed details of a subsequent exchange with Dart.

"Obviously, initially, she was very upset," he said. "She had every right to be; I would be too.

"But I spoke to her before the tournament came out and said if I won a match in the singles or two matches, we probably wouldn't play anyway, we'd pull out.

"Obviously she's done that. I'm glad she's doing well."

 

 

Rafael Nadal has no doubt about Nick Kyrgios' talent but questioned his hunger after the Australian gave the two-time Wimbledon champion a Centre Court scare on Thursday.

Spaniard Nadal needed four sets to get past Kyrgios in the second round, with a gripping encounter seeing the challenger seemingly attempt to wind up both his opponent and umpire Damien Dumusois, who he later described as "horrendous".

Still, Kyrgios managed to combine his antics with a superb display that could easily have been rewarded with victory.

Yet Nadal pointed out how the 24-year-old does not always approach matches with the same level of determination, attributing to his failure to compete consistently at the highest level.

"He's a very top, talented player," Nadal told a news conference. "But there is a lot of important things that you need to do to become a champion, no? He has a lot of good ingredients.

"But, of course, what remains an important one sometimes is the love, the passion for this game. Without really loving this game that much, it is difficult to achieve important things.

"Anyway, with his talent and with his serve, he can win a grand slam, of course. He has the talent to do it. It is true that things can be completely different for him if he wants to play all the matches the same way that he tried today.

"But if you see the first round against Jordan Thompson, he was able to win the match, but the intensity on court, the way that he played, the way that he was focused, was different than today.

"He likes to play in these kind of matches. But to win important things, you don't need to play against the top players, you need to play against other players that are so good, too."

It was an assessment Kyrgios accepted was fair, admitting he is not always the "most professional guy".

"I know what I'm capable of. It just depends. I'm a great tennis player, but I don't do the other stuff," he said. "I'm not the most professional guy. I won't train day in, day out. I won't show up every day.

"So there's a lot of things I need to improve on to get to that level that Rafa brings, Novak [Djokovic], Roger [Federer] have been doing for so long. It just depends how bad I want it.

"But, no, at the moment, I don't think I can contend for a grand slam."

Andy Murray enjoyed his Wimbledon return and hopes he and Pierre-Hugues Herbert will continue to improve after rallying to an impressive opening win.

Former singles champion Murray indicated at the Australian Open he planned to retire this year, hoping to make a final appearance at the All England Club before bowing out.

But after hip resurfacing surgery, Murray returned to win the doubles title with Feliciano Lopez at the Queen's Club Championship and finalised plans to play again at Wimbledon, with his future on the singles circuit to be decided.

The Briton, who will play mixed doubles with Serena Williams, was lining up alongside Herbert for the first time as they took on Marius Copil and Ugo Humbert in the men's doubles.

There was consequently a slow start and they lost the first set, but Murray and Herbert recovered to cruise home 4-6 6-1 6-4 6-0.

Murray told BBC Sport: "It was nice. I was a little bit nervous at the start but got better as the match went on. It was a really nice atmosphere at the end.

"It's tough, but as the match went on we started to get more comfortable. We started reading each other's games better.

"Things were happening naturally and that's how you want it to be in doubles. Hopefully we'll keep getting better."

Murray was then in jovial mood in his post-match news conference, joking about his mother Judy's decision to watch brother Jamie in action instead.

"Jamie is the number one son, so he used to get all the good presents," Murray quipped. "I kind of got the hand-me-downs always since we were young, so I'm used to that."

Turning attentions to his other Wimbledon commitments, Murray was relishing the opportunity to play alongside Williams, but admitted he had few tales to tell of their burgeoning relationship.

"Me and Serena don't know each other that well," he said. "Maybe I can give you a good story after the next 10 days or so after having spent some time on court.

"I think we're going to try and practice tomorrow [Friday]. We'll see how the next 10 days go. Hopefully we'll have a good story to tell at the end of it."

Serena Williams had the support of Meghan Markle on Thursday and revealed her hope to have all of Britain behind her when she plays in the mixed doubles with Andy Murray.

Wimbledon great Williams defeated teenager Kaja Juvan in three sets at the All England Club, with the Duchess of Sussex watching on No. 1 Court.

"It's always exciting when she comes out to watch and support the tennis," Williams said of her friend. "I was happy."

Markle's son, Archie, will be christened on Saturday but Williams can at least offer a reasonable excuse for why she will be absent.

"I'm working on Saturday," she joked. "Yeah, so she understands work."

Before then, however, Williams will link up with Murray in mixed doubles action on Friday - and believes she may receive even greater backing when partnering the home favourite.

"Actually I'm curious," the American said. "I'm going to be so happy when I go out there, it's going to be really cool. That's the real reason I wanted to play with Andy."

Elsewhere on Thursday, defending champion Angelique Kerber crashed out to Lauren Davis. Teenager Amanda Anisimova also lost, beaten by Magda Linette.

Top seed Ashleigh Barty got through, though, along with Sloane Stephens and Belinda Bencic.

 

DAVIS: 'BETTER THAN IT LOOKS'

Kerber's humiliation in defeat to Davis was capped by the American's heavy strapping on her knee, shoulder and, following a first-set slip, ankle.

But Davis insisted she is physically fit despite hobbling through much of her stunning defeat of the 2018 winner.

"I feel good. Tape is a lot better than it looks," she said. "It's just a little soreness with my meniscus on my left side. It's really just prevention at this point, especially on the grass where it can be slippery."

 

KVITOVA, KIKI BATTLE BACK

Petra Kvitova was forced out of the French Open with a forearm injury and looked as though she might be heading home early from Wimbledon, too, as she trailed 5-3 in the first and then saw opponent Kristina Mladenovic forge three set points.

While two-time champion Kvitova battled back to win in straight sets, she acknowledged there are still issues with her injury.

"I can't say it's better, I can't say it's worse," she said. "I'm feeling everything on my body. It's not really surprising.

"We'll see how that will look like tomorrow. I really had a tough match today with fast serves flying to me."

Kiki Bertens was also given a scare but came back from the brink of defeat to beat Taylor Townsend 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 6-2.

 

KONTA CONTINUES BRITISH BID

Both British players in action on the WTA Tour won on Thursday, with Johanna Konta and Harriet Dart each progressing.

French Open semi-finalist Konta brushed aside Katerina Siniakova 6-3 6-4 and said: "I think for any player who is getting to the third round of a grand slam, that's always a massive achievement. It's a massive achievement for me.

"So I'm really pleased for [the other British players] and myself, for us to be still in the tournament, still going at it."

Dart, meanwhile, was on target in a deciding set to see off Beatriz Haddad Maia and will next face Barty.

Rafael Nadal savoured a hard-fought victory over Nick Kyrgios on Centre Court in a Wimbledon match full of needle.

Australian Kyrgios recently described his Spanish rival as "super salty", adding extra spice to a second-round clash that saw both players show their frustration at times.

Kyrgios became fed up with umpire Damien Dumusois, engaging in a running conversation that began with complaints about Nadal taking too long between points and culminated in describing the official as "a disgrace".

Two-time former champion Nadal eventually won through 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-3) and celebrated extravagantly.

He followed Roger Federer, a 6-1 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 winner over Britain's Jay Clarke, in reaching the last-32 stage.

Japan's Kei Nishikori took down another British hope in Cameron Norrie, administering a clinical 6-4 6-4 6-0 lesson, while Italian seeds Matteo Berrettini and Fabio Fognini also prevailed.

American ninth seed John Isner was edged out in five sets by Kazakhstan's Mikhail Kukushkin, though, and former Wimbledon finalist Marin Cilic also exited, losing to Portugal's Joao Sousa.

 

EVANS, NO HE'S NOT MISERABLE NOW...

The tears Dan Evans shed after sinking seeded Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili were ones of joy and relief rather than sorrow. On No. 2 Court, Briton Evans won through in straight sets, with his first Wimbledon campaign since 2016 going to plan so far. Evans has made a terrific comeback after serving a ban for recreational drug use, and his attitude, questioned so often down the years, has been spot on.

Just 14 months ago, Evans had no ranking and now he is up to 61 in the world, with plenty of climbing still to be achieved.

"Obviously I just want to do well at this tournament," he said, explaining the emotional reaction. "It was a goal to be in the main draw here. I did that. Obviously I missed out the last few years. To be into the third round is great for me. That was all really, you know.

"A lot of my friends were here, people who have helped me so much. [It] just got the better of me today. There's plenty more tennis to be played in this tournament, so I won't be resting on that win."

 

TOUCHY SUBJECT FOR TSONGA

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga needed an hour and 46 minutes to get past Lithuanian Ricardas Berankis, almost twice as long as it took him to beat Bernard Tomic in round one.

Tsonga was asked for his reaction to Tomic being fined his entire tournament winnings of £45,000, after being found to have failed to "meet the required professional standards" during their one-sided contest.

And the Frenchman was not happy, hinting he felt the fine implied his own performance was not a factor in Tomic losing so emphatically.

"That's touchy," said Tsonga. "They will do that with him and not with others? And I think it's a little bit too much. I will say it's also, for me, it's like what I did was not win. It's like [I] was just here and I just won because they said he didn't play enough."

Asked if the size of the fine devalued his victory, Tsonga said: "A little bit."

 

COCO TIME FOR FEDERER

Federer revealed he has spoken to WTA officials about the limitations imposed on young players, who are restricted in the number of tournaments they can contest.

Cori 'Coco' Gauff has caught the eye with a run to Wimbledon's third round but can only play a limited season on tour, with the WTA keen to phase the introduction of youngsters to the tour.

"I understand the rule completely that they want the young players not to play too much," Federer said. "I've told the WTA they should loosen up the rules. I loved seeing [Martina] Hingis doing what she did at a young age."

Federer suggested tennis greats such as Martina Navratilova could mentor the youngsters, adding: I don't have the perfect solution. I see why they did it [placed the restrictions], because we've had the history of some tough parents out there. But at the same time you're also increasing the pressure for that player each week to produce."

Rafael Nadal came through a gruelling second-round clash with Nick Kyrgios in four sets to continue his bid for a third title at Wimbledon.

The world number two - the third seed at the All England Club - prevailed 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-3) but will hope to avoid too many more days like this one.

Kyrgios, who was pictured in a local pub late on Wednesday night, initially enjoyed playing the clown as the pair shared the first two sets, before he piled the pressure on Nadal in the next two.

Nadal was good enough to come out on top yet needed a pair of tie-breaks in front of an engrossed crowd on Centre Court.

The charismatic Kyrgios had outlined his aim to "have some fun" against Nadal and, despite trailing early, he certainly did that.

Nadal's breakthrough arrived when an underhit 'tweener' set him up to smash into the lead, but Kyrgios had the crowd on their feet when an underarm serve kept him in the set.

The Spaniard passionately celebrated when he wrapped up an opener in which Kyrgios had repeatedly complained to the umpire of his opponent's failure to be ready to receive serve.

But the highly motivated Kyrgios sensationally broke Nadal at the start of the second and then brilliantly battled to a subsequent hold.

Another underarm serve this time angered the fans, bringing loud jeers that prompted a Kyrgios shrug, and Nadal was level with a break to love.

Kyrgios was given a warning as he again implored the umpire to punish Nadal's poor timekeeping, yet he broke back as he levelled the match at a set apiece.

A tense third set stayed on serve all the way through to a tie-break, where Nadal wrong-footed Kyrgios for the crucial first mini-break as he edged back in front.

The fourth went the same way and, unfortunately for Kyrgios, had the same result, the Australian failing to recover after horribly miscuing a simple volley on the first point of the tie-break.

Serena Williams was given a right royal Wimbledon scare before battling past teenager Kaja Juvan.

Watched by her friend Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, Williams scraped through 2-6 6-2 6-4 on No. 1 Court.

American Williams was far from her best against 18-year-old Slovenian Juvan but showed fighting spirit after dropping the opening set to book a place in round three.

Juvan, a girls' doubles champion two years ago at the All England Club, won through three qualifying rounds to make the main draw for the first time, and beat Kristyna Pliskova in her opener.

Williams, jolted by her slow start, looked down at the court frequently, perhaps concerned by how the grass has already begun to look heavily worn by day four of the championships.

But once she moved up a gear, there was little doubting the outcome, Williams relieved in the end to come through.

"I thought she played well," Williams said of Juvan. "She returned well. I wasn't hitting any big serves.

"I couldn't even ace her during the match because she was really reading the returns. She played well and I started out a little slow."

With pressure mounting, Williams was relieved to go through the gears.

"It brings the best out of me - I like the pressure," she told BBC Sport. "I play my best when I'm down sometimes so I'm just a fighter and I never give up."

Asked about her mixed doubles partnership with Andy Murray, Williams added: "I'm excited to play with a British icon like Andy. It's going to be incredibly amazing.

"Honestly, I feel really honoured to share a court with him. Maybe I could learn a thing or two – I'm always open."


STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Serena Williams [11] bt Kaja Juvan 2-6 6-2 6-4

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Williams - 25/26
Juvan - 12/23

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Williams - 6/5
Juvan - 4/3

BREAK POINTS WON
Williams - 4/10
Juvan - 3/3

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Williams - 54
Juvan - 65

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Williams - 77/52
Juvan - 60/55

TOTAL POINTS
Williams - 81
Juvan - 73

Angelique Kerber saw her Wimbledon title defence improbably ended in the second round by lucky loser Lauren Davis, who overcame an ankle injury to win 2-6 6-2 6-1 on Thursday.

Kerber had been in the same section of the draw as Serena Williams and world number one Ashleigh Barty but will not face either star after falling foul of the dangerous diminutive Davis.

The American, already wearing heavy strapping on both her left knee and right shoulder, twisted her left ankle midway through the first set yet remarkably recovered.

Three-time grand slam champion Kerber, by contrast, was completely out of sorts and a break-heavy contest finally went the way of Davis, who plays Carla Suarez Navarro next.

Davis broke the German immediately in the first, creating the opening with the considerable power of her backhand before Kerber prodded into the net.

That backhand was wayward in the following game but, as in Kerber's first-round match, the breaks kept coming until the first hold saw the fifth seed 3-2 in front.

Davis then skidded towards the net as she sought a response and immediately indicated an issue with her ankle, seeing Kerber ruthlessly break twice to close out the set as she attempted to shake off the problem.

A trainer was belatedly called to Davis' aid, adding more tape to her ankle, and she improbably but deservedly broke at the start of the second.

The earlier pattern was repeated as Kerber broke and Davis hit back, with the hobbling right-hander this time getting the breakthrough hold to lead at 3-1, before bravely maintaining her advantage at 4-2.

Another break saw Davis ease into a decider and she accelerated out of sight, drawing sloppy errors from the increasingly frustrated Kerber to break three times with relative ease and seal a sensational win.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Lauren Davis bt Angelique Kerber [5] 2-6 6-2 6-1

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Davis - 45/50
Kerber - 13/31

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Davis - 2/2
Kerber - 0/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Davis - 8/18
Kerber - 5/9

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Davis - 75
Kerber - 68

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Davis - 55/39
Kerber - 48/38

TOTAL POINTS
Davis - 93
Kerber - 81

Roger Federer issued an ominous warning to his Wimbledon rivals as he beat Jay Clarke in straight sets before declaring: "the tank is full".

The eight-time All England Club champion revealed after his first-round win over Lloyd Harris that he had endured some mobility issues, but he was quickly up to full speed against British number four Clarke on Thursday.

Federer, moving freely and with typical grace, wrapped up the first set in 28 minutes en route to a 6-1 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 triumph on No.1 Court.

"I really enjoyed myself. The tank is full. I came here with a lot of confidence, the first few matches haven't been very taxing physically," said the 20-time grand slam winner.

"You try to win your matches regardless of the score, if you win them in straights that's better.

"This first week has been going well and I know the opponents in terms of ranking will now get better."

Clarke had the backing of a home crowd in London and produced a spirited second-set showing, earning warm praise from the Swiss maestro, who has been impressed with some of the young players emerging at this tournament, not least Coco Gauff in the women's draw.

"I thought the crowds were great, they were really hoping for Jay to get into the match and he did that in the second set," said the 37-year-old. 

"I struggled to take care of business a bit from the baseline. Thankfully I played a pretty good breaker. I had some help from him as he gave me a couple of unforced errors.

"It's refreshing to see new players. I love the story [of Gauff], the same with Jay and new players coming through – unfortunately a few lost already.

"They will take care of business in the future and I will watch from the couch."

Roger Federer wasted little time dismissing the challenge of home hope Jay Clarke at Wimbledon on Thursday, recording a straight-sets win in the second round.

The eight-time All England Club champion triumphed 6-1 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 on No.1 Court, apparently suffering none of the mobility issues that hampered him in the early stages of his opening victory over Lloyd Harris.

Federer complained his "legs weren't moving" as he lost the opening set to Harris on Tuesday, but the Swiss raced out of the blocks against British number four Clarke.

The 20-year-old was quickly made aware of the scale of the task at hand, failing to win a point on the Federer serve before dropping his own following three double faults.

He finally got off the mark in game four and took that momentum into the next, applying sufficient pressure to force a couple of Federer errors that left the 20-time grand slam winner facing two break points.

A delicious flicked forehand and an ace soon snuffed out the threat and Federer, competing in a record 21st Wimbledon, went on to comfortably seal the opening set inside 28 minutes.

Clarke, ranked 169th in the world, grew into the contest in the second set, honing his service game and varying his returns to make Federer work a little harder, both physically and mentally.

However, after dumping a sitter of a volley into the net to fall a mini-break down in the tie-break, Federer upped the tempo to reel off six of the next seven points, wrapping up the set with an ace down the middle.

That broke Clarke's spirited resistance and the third set saw normal service resume, Federer taking the first two games without dropping a point and ultimately getting the job done in a total match time of one hour and 37 minutes.

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Roger Federer [2] bt Jay Clarke 6-1 7-6 (7-3) 6-2

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Federer – 46/25
Clarke – 16/21

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Federer – 10/2
Clarke – 1/7

BREAK POINTS WON
Federer – 4/5
Clarke – 0/2

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Federer – 63
Clarke – 58

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Federer – 91/70
Clarke – 62/50

TOTAL POINTS
Federer – 98
Clarke – 61

Sloane Stephens expressed concern with the way Wimbledon "judged" Bernard Tomic in fining the Australian his full prize money for a defeat to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Tomic was fined £45,000 after the match referee deemed he "did not meet the required professional standards" in a 58-minute reverse, the shortest men's match at the All England Club in 15 years.

The 26-year-old had similarly been punished for 'tanking' at Wimbledon in 2017.

Stephens, speaking after beating Wang Yafan in straight sets on Thursday, initially took offence to comparisons with Tomic's performances.

"Really? I was going to say: you compare me to him? That's really messed up, bro," she told a reporter.

But the American then suggested Tomic's punishment represented a problematic "slippery slope", also referring to Anna Tatishvili's £41,000 fine following a 6-0 6-1 French Open loss to Maria Sakkari.

"I could see if he lost 6-0 6-0 6-0, then that would be something," Stephens said. "But he won four games, he played a 6-4 set.

"I don't know. I didn't see it. I have no idea. Obviously that happened at the French Open, as well. That was with Tatishvili.

"I think now if the tournaments are going to be their own judge and they're going to do that... hmm, I can't say I'm 100 per cent on board with that.

"With Tatishvili, I saw some of it, she lost [6-0 6-1]. But she played Sakkari. She's not playing a scrub. I just don't know if I can be down with that.

"And with the whole back story about her protected ranking and all that stuff, as well, like being forced to play basically or you lose it, there is a lot that goes into it.

"It's a very slippery slope, and when you start doing that and being the judge of what happens and how people earn a living, that's when it gets a little tricky."

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