Wimbledon 2023 has been full of surprises and drama, as some of the best tennis players in the world compete for the prestigious title. Among them, four British players have made headlines with their performances in the first round: Jodie Burrage, Liam Broady, Harriet Dart and Katie Swan.
Jodie Burrage stuns former champion Garbiñe Muguruza
In one of the biggest upsets of the tournament, Jodie Burrage defeated former Wimbledon champion Garbiñe Muguruza in three sets, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3. Burrage, ranked 147th in the world, showed no fear against the 12th seed, who won the title in 2017 and reached the final in 2015. Burrage played aggressively and confidently, hitting 32 winners and breaking Muguruza’s serve six times. The 23-year-old from Surrey celebrated her first ever win at Wimbledon with a roar of delight, as the crowd cheered her on.
Burrage said after the match: “It’s an amazing feeling. I can’t believe I just beat a former Wimbledon champion. I just tried to play my game and enjoy every moment. I’m so happy to have the support of the crowd, they were incredible.”
Burrage will face another tough opponent in the second round, as she will take on the 20th seed, Elise Mertens from Belgium.
Liam Broady overcomes Marco Cecchinato in five sets
Liam Broady also achieved his first ever win at Wimbledon, after a thrilling five-set battle against Marco Cecchinato from Italy. Broady, ranked 142nd in the world, came back from two sets to one down to win 6-3, 6-7, 6-7, 6-2, 6-3. Broady showed great resilience and determination, as he fought off cramps and fatigue to outlast his opponent. Broady hit 18 aces and 58 winners, and saved eight out of nine break points in the final set.
Broady said after the match: “It was a very tough match. He’s a great player and he pushed me to the limit. I’m just proud of myself for staying calm and finding a way to win. It’s a dream come true to win at Wimbledon, especially in front of my family and friends.”
Broady will face another Italian in the second round, as he will take on the 24th seed, Matteo Berrettini, who reached the semifinals in 2019.
Harriet Dart and Katie Swan fall short against higher-ranked opponents
Unfortunately, not all British players had a successful first round at Wimbledon. Harriet Dart and Katie Swan both lost in straight sets to higher-ranked opponents.
Dart, ranked 149th in the world, lost to the fourth seed, Sofia Kenin from USA, 6-2, 6-4. Dart put up a brave fight against the 2020 Australian Open champion, but could not match her consistency and power. Dart had some chances to break Kenin’s serve, but could only convert one out of seven break points.
Swan, ranked 283rd in the world, lost to the 32nd seed, Ekaterina Alexandrova from Russia, 6-1, 6-2. Swan struggled to cope with Alexandrova’s aggressive baseline game, and made too many unforced errors. Swan had a better second set, but could not prevent Alexandrova from sealing the victory.
Dart and Swan will still have a chance to shine at Wimbledon, as they will compete in the doubles event with their respective partners.
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