Wimbledon women’s draw day one preview

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Wimbledon women’s draw day one preview

As the ladies singles begins at Wimbledon, we preview some of the day one match-ups.

Kim Clijsters v Maria Elena Camerin

Clijsters had the privilege of being one of four past players to christen the Wimbledon centre court with the new roof on in an exhibition match before last year’s tournament began, and it was that event that clinched her decision to return to competition in time for last year’s US Open.

This then will be the US Open champion’s first match in the main draw at Wimbledon since she lost to Justine Henin in the semi-finals in 2006 and as such there’s a certain sense of occasion attached to it.

The clinical ease with which Clijsters disposed of her first two opponents at the Aegon International in Eastbourne (before eventual runner-up Victoria Azarenka defeated the Belgian in the quarter-finals) suggests it’s not unreasonable to predict her opening match against the world No. 120 Camerin will be over rather quickly.

Jelena Jankovic v Laura Robson

For the second year running, Laura Robson has gained a wildcard entry into Wimbledon and for the second year running the draw has handed the British teen a tough first round opponent.

Robson, who won the opening set against Daniela Hantuchova at Wimbledon last year, must now attempt to double that tally against a player ranked No. 4 in the world. In the 16-year-old’s favour,

Jankovic’s record at Wimbledon is unspectacular, with the Serb yet to progress beyond the fourth round at the grass court Grand Slam, and losing to a teenaged Melanie Oudin in the third round last year.

There are more than 200 ranking points separating these two opponents, and Jankovic should get across the line here, but don’t expect it to be an easy opener for the former world No. 1 on the first ladies’ singles match of the tournament on centre court.

Shahar Peer v Ana Ivanovic

If the unseeded Ivanovic wants to avoid the second first round defeat of her career at a Grand Slam, she’ll have to find a way to summon up all that old confidence – and fast. Shahar Peer doesn’t have a great Wimbledon record, but the 13th seed is in far better form than the 2008 French Open champion this year.

The pair have only played once before, on the Gold Coast in 2007 where Peer took the honours in three sets. Still, despite Ivanovic’s long-running form woes, this still shapes as a potential danger match for the Isreal if – and it’s still a big “if” – Ivanovic can sort out her serving problems and find some self belief for a couple of good sets of tennis.

Venus Williams v Rossana De Los Rios

The first chance to see five-time Wimbledon champion Williams take to the grass courts of Wimbledon this year should by no means be the last. The 34-year-old De Los Rios has not progressed beyond the second round at Wimbledon in six previous attempts, and shouldn’t present any problems for the world No. 2. No, this is one to watch simply to admire just how good Venus is on this surface. After all, we’ll only get a maximum of seven matches to do so all year.



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