Alize Cornet compared herself to a fine French wine as she left Iga Swiatek's Wimbledon dream in tatters.

Frenchwoman Cornet, who eight years ago produced a Wimbledon sensation when beating Serena Williams, delivered another show-stopping result when she won 6-4 6-2 against top seed and world number one Swiatek.

It happened on the tournament's middle Saturday and on Court One, just as the victory over Williams in 2014 had.

Swiatek had reeled off 37 successive wins, landing six titles in the process, including a second French Open crown. However, she has appeared far from comfortable on the grass in London, and it was clear she would be ripe for such an upset if her performance level from the first two rounds did not improve.

Cornet, who at the age of 32 is competing in a record-tying 62nd consecutive grand slam tournament, will face Australia's Ajla Tomljanovic on Monday for a place in the quarter-finals.

In an on-court interview, Cornet said of her win: "It reminds me of the time I beat Serena on the same court eight years ago. I think this court is a lucky charm for me.

"I want to say I'm a huge fan of Iga. She is just so talented, and she's such an amazing player and such a nice ambassador of women's tennis, so I'm very flattered that I beat her today.

"I think this kind of match is what I'm living for and practising for every day. It really drives me, and I knew I could do it. Somehow I had this belief, even through she had 37 wins in a row.

"It was like, if there is a moment you can beat her it's now, on grass. She feels a little less comfortable than on other surfaces, so I was just believing very hard, very focused, and I have the best team by my side and the best crowd also.

"So I guess I like the upsets. It's a really nice feeling right now.

"I'm like a good wine. In France, a good wine always ages well. It's unreal, I'm playing one of the best seasons of my career. I feel great on the court. I'm having so much fun. Eight years later after my first qualification into the second week I can see I'm still there, I'm still so motivated, and I still have the fire in me."

Swiatek slumped from a 2-0 lead in the second set, dropping six successive games as the match slipped away.

The beaten Pole said: "I know I didn't play good tennis. I was pretty confused about my tactics. When I was practising I didn’t feel in the best shape. So I was aware this could happen.

"Usually when I'm coming back, I have some kind of a plan and I know what to change.

"Here I didn't know what to change. I was confused. On a grass court everything happens so quickly. I didn't tank it, but I just didn't know what to do."

Iga Swiatek's 37-match winning streak came to an end on Wimbledon's Court One as wily Frenchwoman Alize Cornet pulled off a sensational third-round victory.

Top seed and world number one Swiatek had not lost since February, when she was beaten by Jelena Ostapenko in Dubai, reeling off six successive tournament wins, including her second French Open title. It was the longest winning streak in women's singles in the 21st century, and now it is over.

The 21-year-old Polish player had not looked comfortable on grass in her opening two rounds at Wimbledon, and she was outsmarted on Saturday by the experienced Cornet, losing 6-4 6-2 in an hour and 32 minutes.

At the age of 32, Cornet is playing a record-tying 62nd consecutive grand slam, matching Ai Sugiyama's record. She is also enjoying her best year at the majors, reaching a slam quarter-final for the first time in Australia before getting to the third round at Roland Garros.

Crucially, Cornet already had a famous Wimbledon scalp behind her coming into this match. Eight years ago, on the equivalent first Saturday of the championships and on the same court, Cornet defeated Serena Williams.

On this occasion, Cornet swept to a swift double break against the former Wimbledon girls' champion, opening a 3-0 lead. Swiatek got back into the opening set by recovering one break, but she could not draw level.

Swiatek then had a chance to break in the second game of the second set, and a 2-0 lead was hers when Cornet went long with a forehand. Yet the lead was immediately squandered, a dazzling stop volley from Cornet saving game point before a looping backhand winner brought the set back onto serve.

From there, Cornet pulled away, Swiatek's belief fading as the match raced away from her. At her 15th Wimbledon, Cornet was able to celebrate another show-stopping moment.

Data slam: Alize in wonderland

This was a 24th career win for Cornet against a player ranked inside the top 10, and a fourth against a world number one – the previous three all came against Serena Williams, all in 2014 (including one by retirement). The world number 37, who reached a career-high ranking of 11th in 2009, was facing Swiatek for the first time and now goes on to tackle Ajla Tomljanovic for a place in the last eight.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Cornet – 16/7
Swiatek – 21/33

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Cornet – 1/2
Swiatek – 3/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Cornet – 5/6
Swiatek – 2/6

Amanda Anisimova celebrated the "most special day" of her career after her long game came to the fore once again when beating Coco Gauff.

Anisimova came from a set down to beat her compatriot 6-7 (4-7) 6-2 6-1 on Centre Court at Wimbledon.

The American world number 25 has now won 12 matches in three sets in 2022, which is the joint-highest tally on the WTA Tour so far this season, level with Beatriz Haddad Maia.

"It was my first time playing on Centre Court and this is the most special day of my career," the 20-year-old told BBC Sport following her success over this year's French Open runner-up.

"It's just a huge privilege to play on this court playing Coco. She is an amazing player, got to the final of a grand slam, so I wanted to soak up the moment. Winning is so special, especially in front of a full crowd.

"There are so many American players doing well and I'm proud of my country and how we have been doing. It was really exciting to have an all-American clash on this court so it was really special."

Next up for Anisimova in the round of 16 is Harmony Tan, who has been one of the standout stories from the first week at The All England Club.

Tan defeated Serena Williams in the first round, following that triumph up with wins over Sara Sorribes Tormo and Katie Boulter.

Harmony Tan produced a "breathtaking" display as the little-known Frenchwoman extended her remarkable Wimbledon run by thrashing British hope Katie Boulter.

A 6-1 6-1 victory on Court Two was achieved in just 51 minutes, a stark difference to the three hours and 11 minutes that it took Tan to fend off seven-time champion Serena Williams in round one.

The world number 115 is through to the fourth round now and assured of at least £190,000 in prize money.

She followed up the thrilling win over superstar Williams by taking out 45th-ranked Sara Sorribes Tormo in round two, but kept plenty in reserve for the clash with Boulter, emphatically dismissing the home player's challenge.

Boulter stunned last year's runner-up Karolina Pliskova in round two, but Tan was untroubled as her whirlwind Wimbledon debut reached new heights, making only five unforced errors in the match.

"I don't believe it yet. I think if I sleep a little bit tonight, tomorrow I will believe it, but it's amazing," Tan said in an on-court interview.

"I think I like grass. I've never played on that court, but I really like to play with some slice, volley, everything with my game, so I'm really happy.

"It was really emotional for the first round against Serena, and after that it was just playing match by match and today was really good tennis."

Former British number one Johanna Konta, speaking on the BBC, said: "That was breathtaking from Harmony Tan.

"I didn't expect it to be like that, that easy. Not at all. But there's tennis for you. I expect Katie would like to go and practise and come back and say, 'Can we play that again please?'."

Tan also made headlines in the opening week of Wimbledon when she pulled out of the doubles, citing injury, drawing an initially angry response from partner Tamara Korpatsch.

Venus Williams was "inspired" by sister Serena as she made a triumphant return to action in the Wimbledon mixed doubles alongside Jamie Murray.

The 42-year-old partnered Murray on Friday and rolled back the years with a 6-3 6-7 (7-3) 6-3 victory against Michael Venus and Alicja Rosolska in the first round.

That match marked Williams' first competitive action since last August's Chicago Open, with many questioning whether she would ever return to the court.

After showing some flashes of brilliance on Court One, Williams later revealed sibling Serena played a part in her decision to participate in this year's event at SW19.

Serena had herself returned from a year on the sidelines earlier in the week in the women's singles, only to go down to Harmony Tan in a three-set thriller.

"It was definitely super last minute. I was just inspired by Serena," Venus said. "It was amazing. I just was so happy to have so much help today.

"I've been trying to play with [Jamie] forever. He plays hard to get!"

All-time great Williams, who made her Wimbledon debut 25 years ago, is a five-time All England Club singles champion and has won the women's doubles on six occasions.

Williams and Murray will now face British wild cards Alicia Barnett and Jonny O'Mara in the second round, and the American says the fire is back in her belly.

"I had no plan to play but I saw the grass and I got excited," she said. "That's why I was asking [Jamie] last minute. He just had a baby, too, so I know there's a lot going on.

"I couldn't have guessed that I would be here right now, taking it at the last minute. I haven't played in a year, so you don't know what you're going to get.

"Practice is so much different from a match. It's not easy physically or mentally or anything. Just at the last it was like, 'Oh my God, wow.'

"I just not only played a match but won a match. I'm never like that kind of player. I always expect to win. 

"When I sat there, we wanted to win, but when I sat there at the end, it was real. Yeah, I felt something in my heart."

Venus Williams rolled back the years as she teamed up with Jamie Murray to add another Wimbledon victory to her collection.

The five-time All England Club singles champion and six-time women's doubles winner turned 42 years old a fortnight ago, and this year marks 25 years since her Wimbledon singles debut.

Williams had been inactive on tour since last August's Chicago Open, with many doubting she would play again, but the American great showed flashes of brilliance alongside British doubles expert Murray in a 6-3 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 victory over Michael Venus of New Zealand and Poland's Alicja Rosolska.

Some 24 years on from the season when she and Justin Gimelstob landed the Australian Open and French Open mixed doubles titles, Williams thrilled the Court One crowd with her energetic play at times, showing only a hint of rust.

The match was not initially allocated a specific court, as organisers hoped play on a show court would end early to allow for it to be added to the programme.

That panned out ideally, meaning a busy stadium crowd got to see Williams and five-time grand slam mixed doubles champion Murray pair up for a late-evening tussle, three years after their siblings Serena Williams and Andy Murray also joined forces at Wimbledon.

Tatjana Maria bumped Maria Sakkari out of Wimbledon as the German who once played at the All England Club while pregnant condemned the Greek star to a stunning exit.

Mum-of-two Maria dazzled in a 6-3 7-5 victory over the fifth seed, reaching round four of a grand slam for the first time in her career. She had suffered eight successive first-round losses in slams until this week's turnaround, last getting a win at the 2018 US Open.

The inspired Maria revelled on the Court Two big stage, becoming the oldest German woman in the Open Era, which began in 1968, to make it through to the last-16 stage of a major.

At the age of 34 years and 228 days, world number 103 Maria is also the oldest woman remaining in the Wimbledon singles this year.

Sakkari lost in two tight sets to Maria at the Australian Open in January, but the roles were reversed this time, the impressive German landing a fifth career win over a top-10 player.

Husband and coach Charles-Edouard Maria watched from the stands, while their daughters, eight-year-old Charlotte and one-year-old Cecilia, played in a nearby creche.

Maria said in an on-court interview: "I came here with my two kids for the first time. I was so happy to be in the main draw. I love to play on grass. It's such a special place for me. One year, when I was in my first pregnancy, I played pregnant.

"I love to play Wimbledon and to make this happen with my family there are no words for this, only joy and only happiness."

She said her daughters were probably "jumping in front of the TV", and spoke of wanting to set a positive example for her tennis-playing elder daughter.

"I try to be really a role model for my daughter, because she will be the next champion, so I try to show her the best way possible," Maria added. "I cannot wait to go over to the creche now and see my kids."

Neither Maria nor Sakkari had ever gone beyond round three at Wimbledon, with this the one grand slam where the Greek world number five has not reached the last-16 stage.

Maria was one of three mothers in the draw, the WTA said, along with Serena Williams and Yanina Wickmayer, both of whom made early exits. The next test for Maria will be posed by big-hitting Latvian Jelena Ostapenko.

Beaming Brit Heather Watson got her reward for years of persistence at Wimbledon by reaching round four of a singles grand slam for the first time.

Watson also earned herself a rare day off, after a hectic start to her campaign, by racking up a 7-6 (8-6) 6-2 victory over 21-year-old Slovenian Kaja Juvan.

In singles, Watson is a four-time WTA event winner and this was a 43rd grand slam main-draw appearance, yet she had only reached the third round in a major four times before this campaign.

Watson, who has lost in round one on all 10 of her US Open singles appearances, now has a last-16 match at Wimbledon inked into her diary, achieving at the age of 30 what many thought would come much earlier in her career. Germany's Jule Niemeier awaits Watson, with a quarter-final place on the line.

Guernsey star Watson's previous best Wimbledon singles runs came in 2012, 2015 and 2017, when she was halted by Agnieszka Radwanska, Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka respectively.

In mixed doubles, she was a champion with Finland's Henri Kontinen in 2016 and a runner-up in 2017, but singles is where it matters most.

This week she has faced Tamara Korpatsch, Wang Qiang and world number 62 Juvan, a kind run compared to previous Wimbledons, and Watson has taken advantage. She has unusually had to play every day so far, however, with her first-round and second-round matches both spanning two days.

A former world number 38, Watson has drifted to 121st in the WTA rankings. She won just five games when well beaten by Juvan at last year's US Open, but this time it was Watson's day.

It was a match she would have fancied, given Juvan had already lost four times this season to players ranked outside the top 100.

Watson said in an on-court BBC interview: "Wow, what an atmosphere. I actually wasn't that nervous, but first time in the fourth round, I'm so happy. I'm not speechless because I'm blabbing on, but I don't know what to say. It means everything."

She has taken inspiration from seeing fellow Britons Katie Boulter, Cameron Norrie and Liam Broady battle through early matches.

"It really helps. I've watched all of their matches," Watson said. "It's really inspiring, and we're all egging each other on."

Iva Swiatek says it is "pretty special" to have matched Martina Hingis' run of 37 victories in a row after coming through a tough test with Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove.

The world number one was taken to three sets by lucky loser Kerkhove in Thursday's second-round tie at Wimbledon but came out on top 6-4 4-6 6-3 on Court No. 1.

Swiatek overtook Monica Seles' career-best 36-match winning streak with her latest triumph and can surpass Hingis with victory over Alize Cornet in the next round.

That would see the Pole hold the record for the most successive victories on the WTA Tour since 1990, something she would take great pride in.

"I think another match to this number [37] is pretty special for me, but you know, when I'm out there, I'm not really thinking about that," she said in her on-court interview.

"I'm just trying to play the best tennis possible on grass, and the result is going to come. I don't have full influence in it, but I'm happy that [the winning streak] is 37.

"Now I'm going to do my best to get even more."

 

Swiatek still has some way to go to match the all-time winning run, with the record held by Martina Navratilova (74 in a row during 1984).

The two-time French Open winner was far from her best against world number 138 Kerkhove in a match lasting more than two hours that saw her broken three times.

She dropped a set for just the seventh time during her incredible run, which stretches back to defeat against Jelena Ostapenko in mid-February.

In doing so, Kerkhove became the lowest-ranked player to win a set against the number one female in the world since Carla Suarez Navarro – also ranked 138 – against Ash Barty at Wimbledon last year.

"She played a really great match, and it seemed that she really understood how to play today," Swiatek added. 

"But I'm really happy that I could sometimes just fight back and be the last one to play that ball in. I'm pretty happy that I'm going to have another chance to play here."

Swiatek has now won 46 matches this year in total. In the entirety of the 2021 season, only Anett Kontaveit and Ons Jabeur (both 48) won more matches.

Up next is former world number 11 Cornet, who is playing her 62nd consecutive grand slam tournament, which ties Ai Sugiyama for the Open Era record.

Iga Swiatek was made to work hard for her place in the third round at Wimbledon after being taken to three sets by Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove in Thursday's entertaining encounter.

The top seed had won her previous 36 matches, dropping just six sets in the process, but she was taken the distance by world number 138 Kerkhove on Court No. 1.

Swiatek ultimately proved too strong and prevailed 6-4 4-6 6-3 in a little over two hours to set up a meeting with Alize Cornet, although she was broken three times in total.

In just the third meeting between a lucky loser and top-seeded female in an Open Era grand slam, Kerkhove gave Swiatek plenty to think about throughout.

The Dutchwoman broke her opponent's serve in the third and fifth games of the opener, either side of failing to herself hold, but Swiatek then temporarily found some rhythm.

She broke Kerkhove in the eighth game and again in the 10th to take the set, although the world's top-ranked player once again allowed errors to creep in.

Despite double-faulting eight times across the first two sets, Kerkhove levelled up the match by earning the only break of the second set in the seventh game.

That paved the way for a decider, which saw both players hold in two lengthy opening games, but Swiatek visibly started to grow in confidence and broke Kerkhove in the fourth.

Kerkhove produced an impressive backhand winner en route to taking the third set to a ninth game, yet Swiatek was still serving for the win and made no mistake in doing so.

 

Data slam: Swiatek streak continues

Swiatek was expected to come through this second-round clash with ease, but that proved far from the case as Kerkhove became the lowest-ranked player to win a set against the number one female in the world since Carla Suarez Navarro – also ranked 138 – against Ash Barty at Wimbledon last year.

The reigning French Open winner dug deep to claim a 37th win in a row, however, and she remains on course to become the first female since Angelique Kerber in 2016 to win two grand slam titles in the same season.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Swiatek – 31/31
Kerkhove – 15/22

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Swiatek – 5/1
Kerkhove – 2/8

BREAK POINTS WON
Swiatek – 4/7
Kerkhove – 3/5

Katie Boulter upset last year's runner-up Karolina Pliskova to reach the third round of a grand slam for the first time at Wimbledon on Thursday.

Boulter has been blighted by injuries but broke new ground in her home major with a 3-6 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 defeat of the sixth seed on Centre Court.

The 25-year-old beat Pliskova on the grass at Eastbourne last week and got the better of the Czech once again, hitting 25 winners and breaking the former world number one four times.

Boulter, ranked 118th in the world, dedicated a huge victory to her grandmother, who passed away on Tuesday.

She will face Frenchwoman Harmony Tan, conqueror of Serena Williams, for a place in round four at the All England Club.

Boulter became only the sixth female British wildcard to progress beyond the second round of the grass-court major at SW19.

Lesia Tsurenko says she has heard from only a solitary Russian and one Belarusian player who have opposed the invasion of Ukraine after she beat compatriot Anhelina Kalinina to reach the third round at Wimbledon.

The 33-year-old won an all-Ukrainian contest against Kalinina 3-6 6-4 6-3 to set up a clash with Jule Niemeier following the German's upset of second seed Anett Kontaveit on Wednesday.

The pair were cheered on by flag-waving supporters at SW19, while Tsurenko sported a blue-and-yellow.

Tsurenko expressed her disappointment over the lack of vocal opposition from Russian and Belarusian athletes, who are banned from playing at the All England Club, to the war in Ukraine after she moved into round three.

"I would be the first one to say that, no, you should not ban them," she stated.

"But I have heard only from one Belarusian player and from one Russian player, who talked to me personally and told me: ‘I’m against the war.’

"I did not hear anything from any other player. So for me, the silence means … I mean, it's not good when … I don’t know. I thought I had a lot of friends on tour, especially from Russians and Belarusians.

"It’s just a step. [But] it's a good step to show that that's what we all have to do. I am Ukrainian. There is no other opinion in my head."

Harmony Tan's unexpected first-round singles win over Serena Williams at Wimbledon prompted her to quit the doubles tournament, leading to a social media rant from her partner, who suggested she was not cut out for professional tennis.

Tan had entered the doubles draw alongside Tamara Korpatsch, with their first-round match against Raluca Olaru and Nadiia Kichenok set for Wednesday.

But Tan perhaps had not expected to be playing late into Tuesday evening and then to have a second-round singles contest to prepare for against Sara Sorribes Tormo on Thursday.

The Frenchwoman came through an epic back-and-forth on Centre Court to beat seven-time champion Williams – in singles action for the first time in almost a year – 7-5 1-6 7-6 (10-7).

Tan gained little sympathy from Korpatsch, however, with the German out of the singles competition on Monday following a three-set defeat to Heather Watson.

"Unfortunately my doubles partner H. Tan retired from our doubles today," Korpatsch wrote on her Instagram page.

"She just texted me this morning. Let me wait here one hour before the match start.

"I'm very sad, disappointed and also very angry that I can't play my first doubles grand slam. And it's really not fair for me. I didn't deserve that.

"She asked me before the tournament if we wanna play doubles and I said yes, I didn't ask her, she asked me!

"If you're broken after a three-hour match the day before, you can't play professional. That's my opinion."

Korpatsch's frustration continued on her Instagram story, where she had initially revealed the news, suggesting she was capable of playing more than six hours one day and still taking to the court the next.

She later added: "Thanks for all your comments. But I would like to say: I don't hate my doubles partner for withdrawing. I just want to share my feelings and opinion about my situation.

"If I'm still competing in singles, I would still feel and do the same. I wanted to play my first doubles grand slam. That was my chance.

"Yesterday she [Tan] was so motivated to me, and I was happy about our doubles.

"But just today in the morning getting this message feels very painful. It's not a WTA tournament, which I can play almost every week. It's a grand slam."

Jule Niemeier claimed the biggest scalp of her career by knocking second seed Anett Kontaveit out of Wimbledon with an emphatic straight-sets win on Wednesday.

Playing her first match against a top-10 player, world number 97 Niemeier moved into the third round with a 6-4 6-0 victory on No.1 Court.

Kontaveit did not earn a solitary break point as she made another early grand slam exit after falling in the first round at the French Open.

The number-three ranked Estonian, who was knocked out of Wimbledon in the opening round last year, has been suffering from the after-effects of coronavirus over the past couple of months.

German outsider Niemeier was beaten in her first main-draw grand slam match at the French Open last month, but took just 58 minutes to set up a third-round meeting with Anhelina Kalinina or Lesia Tsurenko.

The 22-year-old became the lowest-ranked female player to win a main-draw match at the All England Club against a top-three opponent since Jana Cepelova's defeat of Garbine Muguruza in 2016.

Serena Williams "gave all I could" in an epic first-round Wimbledon defeat to Harmony Tan and could not assure fans she would be back on Centre Court again.

Williams is a seven-time Wimbledon champion – only Martina Navratilova has won the championships on more occasions in the Open Era – but her last championship victory came back in 2016.

There have been two final appearances since then but also now consecutive first-round exits, having retired with a hamstring tear against Aliaksandra Sasnovich in 2021; previously in her remarkable career, Williams had fallen at the final hurdle only once at any major.

Tuesday's battle with Tan was her first singles match since that injury, and Williams certainly did not lack spirit, recovering from losing the first set to dominate the second and then take control of the third, too.

Twice in the decider she led by a break, attempting to serve for the match at 5-4, only to be broken back.

Williams was then required to hold serve – and fend off a match point – to reach a tie-break, in which she led 4-0.

But Tan reeled off the next five points and eventually prevailed 7-5 1-6 7-6 (10-7) from the sort of titanic tussle Williams – now 40 and "really suffering" by the end – may not see again.

"That's a question I can't answer," she replied when asked if this was her last Wimbledon appearance. "I don't know. Who knows where I'll pop up?"

Williams "obviously" did not want this to be her lasting memory of the grass-court major. "You know me," she said. "Definitely not."

But the American added: "I gave all I could do. Maybe tomorrow I could have given more. Maybe a week ago I could have given more. But today was what I could do.

"At some point, you have to be able to be okay with that."

However, while her Wimbledon future is clearly in doubt, Williams appeared to suggest a US Open tilt later this year was highly likely.

"When you're at home, especially in New York and that being the place I first won a grand slam, it is always special," she said.

"There's always motivation to get better and play at home."

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