Coming on the heels of an upset-filled Monday, Day 2 of Wimbledon 2014 had a lot to live up to. Fortunately, the star power was out in full force to help shoulder the load, as well as some notable ranked players and top seeds falling to inferior talent on both the ladies' and gentlemen's side of the bracket.
The surprises are what draw us into the All England Club, but there are also storylines happening every day that make this such a compelling event. For instance, Roger Federer took the court on Tuesday trying to win this tournament for the eighth time, breaking a tie with Pete Sampras for most in the Open Era.
Federer had little trouble in his first match, defeating Paolo Lorenzi in straight sets and losing just five games along the way, 6-1, 6-1, 6-3. It's the 12th consecutive year the 32-year-old has won at least one match at Wimbledon.
Here is a look at the scores and top storylines from Day 2 at the All England Club.
|No. 2 Rafael Nadal def. Martin Klizan||4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3|
|No. 4 Roger Federer def. Paolo Lorenzi||6-1, 6-1, 6-3|
|No. 5 Stan Wawrinka def. Joao Sousa||6-3, 6-4, 6-3|
|No. 8 Milos Raonic def. Matthew Ebden||6-2, 6-4, 6-4|
|No. 9 John Isner def. Daniel Smethurst||7-5, 6-3, 6-4|
|No. 10 Kei Nishikori def. Kenny De Schepper||6-4, 7-6 (7-5), 7-5|
|No. 13 Richard Gasquet def. James Duckworth||6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 3-6., 6-0, 6-1|
|No. 14 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga def. Jurgen Melzer||6-1, 3-6, 3-6, 6-2, 6-4|
|No. 15 Jerzy Janowicz def. Somdev Dewarman||4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3|
|No. 19 Feliciano Lopez def. Yuichi Sugita||7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (9-7)|
|No. 22 Philipp Kohlschreiber def. Igor Sijsling||6-4, 6-4, 6-2|
|No. 23 Tommy Robredo def. Lukas Lacko||7-6 (7-5), 1-6, 6-2, 6-4|
|No. 24 Gael Monfils def. Malek Jaziri||7-6 (7-5), 7-5, 6-4|
|Dusan Lajovic def. No. 29 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez||7-6 (7-5), 6-2, 3-6, 3-6, 6-3|
|No. 30 Marcel Granollers def. Nicholas Mahut||6-4, 7-6 (8-6), 6-7 (7-9), 6-4|
|No. 1 Serena Williams def. Anna Tatishvili||6-1, 6-2|
|No. 3 Simona Halep def. Teliana Pereira||6-2, 6-2|
|No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska def. Andreea Mitu||6-2, 6-1|
|No. 5 Maria Sharapova def. Samantha Murray||6-1, 6-0|
|Kaia Kanepi def. No. 7 Jelena Jankovic||6-3, 6-2|
|No. 9 Angelique Kerber def. Urszula Radwanska||6-2, 6-4|
|No. 11 Ana Ivanovic def. Francesca Schiavone||7-6 (8-6), 6-4|
|No. 13 Eugenie Bouchard def. Daniela Hantuchova||7-5, 7-5|
|Caroline Garcia def. No. 14 Sara Errani||2-6, 7-6 (7-3), 7-5|
|No. 15 Carla Suarez-Navarro def. Zhang Shuai||6-1, 6-2|
|No. 16 Carolina Wozniacki def. Shahar Peer||6-3, 6-0|
|No. 19 Sabine Lisicki def. Julia Glushko||6-2, 6-1|
|No. 20 Andrea Petkovic def. Katarzyna Piter||6-1, 6-4|
|Donna Vekic def. No. 21 Roberta Vinci||6-4, 4-6, 6-4|
|No. 24 Kirsten Flipkens def. Tamira Paszek||6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2|
Complete list of Day 2 results can be found via Wimbledon.com.
Rafael Nadal Struggles in 700th Career Victory
While we can debate their standing in the current tennis landscape, there's no denying that Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal remain the biggest stars in the sport on the gentlemen's side of the bracket.
It's only fitting, then, that these two longtime rivals began their quest for the 2014 Wimbledon title on the same day. Federer and Nadal won their respective matches, but the latter got more than he likely bargained for against Martin Klizan.
Klizan took the first set 6-4, but Nadal stormed back to win the next three sets and advance. Tennis coach Darren Cahill noted on Twitter the elation on Rafa's face just to get this one win:
Big sigh of relief from Rafa Nadal. Klizan played well & Rafa had to dig deep. Will be better moving on. #700 victories on tour. #vamosrafa— Darren Cahill (@darren_cahill) June 24, 2014
One interesting tidbit to come out of Nadal's win, which he discussed in his post-match press conference via Wimbledon's Twitter account, was adapting to the grass settings at the All England Club:
There was another reason for Nadal to celebrate this win more than any other first-round victory. As you can see from the ATP World Tour's tweet, it was a milestone win in Rafa's already-storied career:
It may not be the prettiest victory Nadal has ever had, but sometimes the most important thing is just surviving and advancing. Who knows what will happen in the next match? He could catch fire like that, though this event has been problematic for him at times, including losses in the first round last year and second round two years ago.
On the positive side, Nadal did provide one of the best highlights we are likely to see at this year's event, courtesy of SportsCenter:
The key for Nadal will be getting out of the first two rounds. In his career, when he makes it past the second round, he's made it to the finals every time except 2003. Klizan showed up to play, but that might be the wake-up call the two-time Wimbledon champion needed.
Roger Federer Turns Back the Clock
Federer hasn't been a huge factor in Grand Slam events so far this year. He did play Nadal in the semifinals at the Australian Open, losing in three sets, but was once again dealt a dose of kryptonite at the French Open with a fourth-round defeat at the hands of Ernests Gulbis.
The 17-time major champion has now gone winless in his last seven Grand Slam events entering Wimbledon, the longest streak of his career since winning his first title at the All England Club in 2003.
Going up against Lorenzi, ranked 83rd in the world, Federer made such quick work of him that Sports Illustrated was able to make a joke tying in the other big sporting event going on right now:
Roger Federer beats Paolo Lorenzi 61 61 63. Pretty sure the Italian soccer team will be on the field longer than Lorenzi was.— SI Tennis (@SI_Tennis) June 24, 2014
Even though it's not exactly something to celebrate, the Associated Press, via FoxSports.com, noted that this was a monumental defeat for Lorenzi:
Federer and Lorenzi are both 32, but that's where the similarities end. For the Italian, the loss extended his career Grand Slam record to 0-13. Only one player, Juan-Antonio Marin of Costa Rica, has a worse record, 0-17.
"I didn't know about his record to be honest," Federer said, adding that he never felt sorry for his opponent. "I'm putting in my fair share of hard work as well and you feel like you deserve it," he said.
Federer is showing his cold heart by not having any sympathy for Lorenzi getting closer to tying a record that no athlete wants.
Things shouldn't be as easy in the next round, as Ben Rothenberg of The New York Times highlighted. (For the record, Gilles Muller will play Federer after defeating Julien Benneteau.)
Roger Federer easily past clay-loving Paolo Lorenzi 6-1, 6-1, 6-3. Next round, especially if against Gilles Muller, MUCH harder. #Wimbledon— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) June 24, 2014
Muller is a qualifier at this year's Wimbledon, but he's not the typical low-level qualifier who is just happy to be there. He was once ranked in the top 50 and once played in the finals of the Atlanta Open in 2012 against Andy Roddick.
Federer will need the same resolve and determination he showed against Lorenzi to walk away with a victory in the second round.
Serena Williams Came to Play
This has not been a banner year for Serena Williams, at least by her lofty standards. She does have three singles titles to her name and enters Wimbledon as the No. 1 overall seed, but her performance in majors has left a lot to be desired.
Williams lost in the fourth round at the Australian Open and followed that up with a second-round exit at the French Open. Since we only judge her by how she performs in the big events, 2014 has been a huge disappointment thus far.
There's still time for the bottom to drop out, but so far Williams looks like she's up to her old tricks with an easy straight-sets victory over Anna Tatishvili on Tuesday.
According to the WTA's Twitter feed, Serena had 16 aces against Tatishvili to secure the victory and advance to the second round:
There was a scary moment in the second set, as Joe Fleming of USA Today showed on Twitter, where Williams was caught in a rally, ran to hit the ball and lost her footing. Her knee buckled a little bit, but she was able to get up and finish the match with no problems:
That slippery grass ... Serena leads Tatishvili 6-1, 1-2 (REUTERS) pic.twitter.com/peoZFeTUCv— Joe Fleming (@ByJoeFleming) June 24, 2014
Even though the losses in Australia and France were alarming, Wimbledon has always been Williams' baby. She has won at the All England Club five times. If another loss happens early in this event, then we will know that something is wrong.
For now, though, all is right with the world.
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