WRAPUP 1-Tennis-Stakhovsky falls off his cloud, Robson shines

Fri Jun 28, 2013 6:11pm BST

Related Topics

* Ukrainian Stakhovsky tumbles out after slaying Federer

* Britain's Robson safely through on Centre Court

* World number four Ferrer also into third round

By Martyn Herman

LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) - Sergiy Stakhovsky tumbled from cloud nine at rainy Wimbledon on Friday as the man who dethroned Roger Federer returned to relative obscurity but British teenager Laura Robson was in no mood to waste the spotlight.

Wimbledon's Centre Court roof operators were busy as Day Five of the championships began in soggy fashion and the canopy was in place for Robson as she served up a tasty starter before title-chasing Andy Murray provided the main course later.

Robson, who along with Murray was one of only two home players to reach the second round of the singles, had been upgraded to the main show court after her match with Colombia's Mariana Duque-Marino was delayed the night before.

A powerful 6-4 6-1 victory justified her top-billing and made sure Murray, bidding to become the first British man to win the title since 1936, will not have to shoulder the hopes of a nation alone yet.

Murray, whose side of the draw has been stripped of big names, was facing Spanish 32nd seed Tommy Robredo later.

Two days after Stakhovsky caused one of Wimbledon's greatest upsets by taking out Federer in a Wednesday Wipeout of seeds and former world No.1s, he failed to hit the heights in a 6-2 2-6 7-5 6-3 third-round defeat by Austrian Jurgen Melzer on a drizzly Court Three.

The shelf life of giant-slayers has proved a short one so far at the championships with Ukraine's Stakhovsky, the world No. 116, going the same way as Rafa Nadal's conqueror Belgian Steve Darcis who withdrew injured from his next match.

Portugal's Michelle Larcher De Brito, who stunned former women's champion Maria Sharapova on Wednesday, was hoping to avoid a similar anti-climax when she faced Italy's Karin Knapp in her third round match.

Sharapova's vocal chords were still working on Friday though as she continued to support Bulgarian boyfriend Grigor Dimitrov in his rain-interrupted battle against Slovenian Grega Zemlja.

However, there was to be no escape as the solid Zemlja crunched a running forehand winner down the line.

RAIN DELAY

"At a few points I heard her Maria screaming behind my back which wasn't very pleasant!" Zemlja, the 26-year-old son of a former ski jumper, told reporters.

"It was after the points not during the points though."

He was not distracted and held on to beat 29th seed Dimitrov, winning 3-6 7-6(4) 3-6 6-4 11-9, having resumed at 9-8 ahead in the decider after rain had delayed the start of play on the outside courts.

World number four David Ferrer avoided any mishaps as he moved into the third round with a straight sets victory over fellow Spaniard Robert Bautista Agut. He will face Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov in the third round.

Pole Jerzy Janowicz, the 24th seed lurking dangerously in the bottom half of the draw, gave a vivid demonstration of his talent on Centre Court to reach round four for the first time, overpowering Spanish 15th seed Nicolas Almagro to set up a clash with Melzer.

Spain's 19th seed Carla Suarez Navarro, Italy's Flavia Pennetta and Belgian number 20 seed Kirsten Flipkens all took advantage of some breaks in the cloud to reach the last 16.

However, the fall of the seeds continued as Germany's Angelique Kerber, seeded seventh and who had been a potential fourth round opponent for Britain's Robson, lost her delayed second round match against Estonia's Kaia Kanepi. (Reporting by Martyn Herman; editing by Ken Ferris)

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