Former champion Kerber into second week after stunning comeback win

Angelique Kerber def. Aliaksandra Sasnovic 2-6, 6-0, 6-1

Angelique Kerber is through to the fourth round of the ladies’ singles after a stunning comeback against the world number 100 Aliaksandra Sasnovic.

Kerber, the 2018 champion here, lost the first set 6-2, but returned after a rain delay of 1hr 45mins to demolish her opponent – giving her just one game in the final two sets and running out a 2-6, 6-0, 6-1 winner.

Sasnovic, the Belarussian who speaks four languages and is currently studying for a physical culture degree at Minsk University, was looking to make it into the second week at the All England Club for the second time, following her journey to the fourth round in 2018 – her best Grand Slam showing.

In Kerber, she was facing her second former champion in the first three rounds of these Championships – following her victory over Serena Williams, who was forced to pull out due to injury in the first round.

And she came out all guns blazing on Court No.2.

There were showers at the All England Club on Saturday morning – but the forecast is better for the afternoon (Picture: Charlie Stong)

Kerber, the number 25 seed, was broken in her opening two service games – a wonderful forehand return winner at the start of the second forcing the German into more errors on her own serve as Sasonvic raced into a 3-0 lead.

The rest of the set went to serve until the rain came at 11.25am with the score at 5-1 to the Belarusian.

But upon the resumption at 1.10pm Kerber had found her A game in the locker room and showed her class.

She held her serve for 2-5 , and although Sasnovic held hers to take the first set, the German was already beginning to look ominous.

Her arms looked freer and her ground strokes more confident. Kerber, who upped sticks to Poland in 2012 to be close to her grandfather’s indoor tennis centre, was beginning to move through the gears.

Her recovery coincided with a wobble from Sasnovic, who allowed careless errors to creep into her game. Kerber raced through the second set 6-0 in no time.

And although Sasnovic showed some spirit to hold her first service game of the deciding set, Kerber was in no mood to let her vice-like grip of this third round encounter slip.

Recognising the importance of not dropping her serve at 1-2, Sasnovic made a couple of desperate challenges, which went against her, and it was quickly 3-1.

Kerber’s powerful serve was by now in full-flow, and the physical difference between the pair was apparent.

She completed the job in quick time, finishing it off with an ace, and will now consider herself a real contender for her second Venus Rosewater Dish.

Pictured top: Angelique Kerber playing against Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the third round of the ladies’ singles on No.2 Court on day six of Wimbledon at The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, Wimbledon (Picture: PA)





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