We're just six days through the 2014 Wimbledon Championships, and favorites have already started to fall.
There are still plenty of household names across both the men's and women's sides of the draw, and we haven't seen an unprecedented amount of upsets. But the list of contenders knocked out early is growing by the day, with the biggest addition to the list coming on Day 6.
Let's get right to it and break down Saturday's results from the All England Club.
|No. 2 Rafael Nadal def. Mikhail Kukushkin||6-7 (4-7), 6-1, 6-1, 6-1|
|No. 4 Roger Federer def. Santiago Giraldo||6-3, 6-1, 6-3|
|No. 5 Stan Wawrinka vs. Denis Istomin||Postponed|
|No. 8 Milos Raonic def. Lukasz Kubot||7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-4), 6-2|
|No. 9 John Isner vs. No. 19 Feliciano Lopez||Postponed|
|No. 10 Kei Nishikori tied w/ Simone Bolelli||3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 3-3 (Suspended)|
|No. 23 Tommy Robredo def. No. 15 Jerzy Janowicz||6-2, 6-4, 6-7 (5-7), 4-6, 6-3|
|Nick Kyrgios def. Jiri Vesely||3-6, 6-3, 7-5, 6-2|
|No. 25 Alize Cornet def. No. 1 Serena Williams||1-6, 6-3, 6-4|
|No. 3 Simona Halep def. Belinda Bencic||6-4, 6-1|
|No. 5 Maria Sharapova def. Alison Riske||6-3, 6-0|
|No. 9 Angelique Kerber def. No. 24 Kirsten Flipkens||3-6, 6-3, 6-2|
|No. 19 Sabine Lisicki leads No. 11 Ana Ivanovic||6-1, 1-1 (Suspended)|
|No. 13 Eugenie Bouchard def. No. 20 Andrea Petkovic||6-3, 6-4|
|Zarina Diyas def. Vera Zvonareva||7-6 (7-1), 2-6, 6-3|
|Yaroslava Shvedova leads Madison Keys||7-6 (9-7), 6-6 (Suspended)|
Postponed matches to be played Sunday.
Note: Results courtesy Wimbledon.com.
Alize Cornet def. No. 1 Serena Williams: 1-6, 6-3, 6-4
Despite her constant status as the world's best female tennis player, Serena Williams has become synonymous with early Grand Slam flame-outs in 2014. But this was Wimbledon—the five-time champ was going to get it together on the grass courts, right?
Not quite. Williams was ousted in the third round on Saturday by Alize Cornet. She won the first set convincingly but fell in sets No. 2 and No. 3, and that led to her demise.
ESPN's SportsCenter recapped the result:
Serena Williams goes down at Wimbledon! The five-time Wimbledon champion loses in 3 sets to Alize Cornet of France 1-6, 6-3, 6-4.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 28, 2014
Obviously, Williams looked to be in control early on. She took command of the match in the way she usually does—ripping away the first set with conviction and wearing down her opponent.
Only, Cornet didn't wear down. She only got better as the match progressed, and eventually Williams was left with no answers. The American became the second of the two top women's seeds to fall, joining No. 2-seeded Li Na.
The top seed was upbeat after the match despite her tough defeat, per Wimbledon:
Serena: "I don't know, I worked really hard. Just cause I lost doesn't mean I'll stop. Maybe the hard work isn't for today but tomorrow"— Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) June 28, 2014
It promises to be a tough couple of weeks for Williams as she dissects this early defeat. She's no stranger to bouncing back from adversity, in fact few can rival her in that regard. But with three majors out of the way, she's threatening to go a full year without a Grand Slam title for the first time since 2011.
But as heartbreaking as the loss is for Williams, it's even more gratifying for Cornet. After beating Williams earlier this year in Dubai, she topped her yet again for one of her biggest career victories.
It won't get any easier for Cornet moving forward. She plays 13th-seeded Eugenie Bouchard in the round of 16.
No. 2 Rafael Nadal def. Mikhail Kukushkin: 6-7, 6-1, 6-1, 6-1
Rafael Nadal might not be playing perfect tennis at the moment, but he's done what many expected him not to do—get past his first three opponents in a noticeably tough draw.
The third of those came on Saturday, as Nadal fought off an early challenge from Mikhail Kukushkin and dominated him down the stretch, winning 6-7, 6-1, 6-1, 6-1.
Although he has to be happy with the victory, the Spaniard won't be pleased with the fact that he started slow again. Just like in his opening two rounds, Nadal dropped the first set—spurring talk of an upset as the morning progressed.
But just as that talk picked up, Nadal was quick to shut it up. As he did in his first two matches, the No. 2 seed dominated the final three sets and made it no contest.
Wimbledon summed up the win:
Although not nearly as convincing as he was on clay just weeks ago at Roland Garros, the nine-time French Open champion has built some momentum for himself after three tough opening matches.
Next up for Nadal will be unseeded Nick Kyrgios.
No. 5 Maria Sharapova def. Alison Riske: 6-3, 6-0
Maria Sharapova's biggest victories over the last few days have come with her not even on the court, watching favorites Serena Williams and Li Na fall in the early stages.
Meanwhile, Sharapova continues to roll in her own appearances. She cruised past Alison Riske in a third-round affair on Saturday, winning 6-3, 6-0.
The Russian's victory wasn't in doubt for long. Riske did start strong and put the pressure on in the early games, but Sharapova quickly answered back to take the first set.
The second set wasn't even competitive. Sharapova dominated from start to finish, picking up six straight games to finish Riske off.
At least Riske was a good sport about it:
David Beckham watched me lose to Sharapova on Center Court at Wimbledon. Id say that is half winning...— Alison Riske (@Riske4rewards) June 28, 2014
Few players on both the men's and women's sides needed a career-revitalizing year quite like Sharapova. The 27-year-old already won the career Grand Slam, but she had won just one Grand Slam title in the last six years before her 2014 French Open win.
After building her confidence back up, culminating in her Roland Garros victory, the sky is the limit for Sharapova at Wimbledon. She won her only title at the All England Club 10 years ago, but it's hard not to peg her as the favorite now that Williams and Na have departed.
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