London: Serena Williams passed her first proper test with style by beating France’s Kristina Mladenovic to reach the Wimbledon fourth round. The 23-time Grand Slam champion, on a comeback after giving birth, went a break down against the former top-10 player but won 7-5 7-6(7-2).
While the women’s seeds have been tumbling early here, Williams has advanced without dropping a set. She faces fellow mum and world number 120 Evgeniya Rodina of Russia next. Serena’s chances of winning an eighth Wimbledon and 24th Grand Slam title were boosted Friday when Madison Keys became the seventh top 10 seed to be eliminated. Tenth seed Keys lost in the third round 7-5 5-7 6-4 to Russian qualifier Evgeniya Rodina, ranked 120th in the world. She joins defending champion Garbine Muguruza, world No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki, two-time champion Petra Kvitova and US Open winner Sloane Stephens in falling in the first week.
Sister Venus crashes out
As the oldest woman left in the draw, after her 38-year-old sister Venus was knocked out on Friday, Williams is still leaving the younger players like 25-year-old Mladenovic behind. And despite her seeding of 25, and her world ranking of 181, she is looking every bit the player to beat.
Giantkiller Uytvanck happy to come out as gay
London: Wimbledon giant-killer Alison van Uytvanck said she was comfortable coming out as gay, saying “it is not a disease”. The 24-year-old Belgian stunned Muguruza 5-7, 6-2, 6-1. She then told reporters that she was happy to have come out as gay and talked about her relationship with fellow player Greet Minnen.