Wimbledon Recap Day 1: Alcaraz begins title defense; Sabalenka and Azarenka withdraw

The oldest tennis tournament in the world began Monday with its handful of storylines. Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner begin their pursuit for a Wimbledon title, while a South African advanced in style. Here’s a look at the highlights in day number 1 from SW19.

Men’s Singles

Last year’s men’s singles champion Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz began his pursuit of a fourth Grand Slam title with a straight sets win against Estonia’s Mark Lajal (7-6) (7-5) (6-2). Alcaraz in the post-match interview mentioned how he gets nervous when playing at Wimbledon. Carlitos played effectively in the critical points and came away the win.

It was a straightforward win for Alcaraz, it took four sets for his usual adversary, Jannik Sinner. Overcoming a first serve percentage of 59%, Sinner cruised to a two-set lead on German Yannick Hanfmann, before taking the match in four sets (6-3) (6-4) (3-6) (6-3). Sinner will face fellow countryman and former Wimbledon finalist Mateo Berrettini.

Russia’s Daniil Medvedev cruised with a straight sets win against American Aleksandar Kovacevic. Medvedev hopes to improve on his semifinal finish last year.

8th seeded Casper Ruud of Norway has not sugarcoated how he is not fond of grass, with his best finish ever. Ruud defeated Aussie Alex Bolt (7-6) (6-4) (6-4) to advance to the second round with hopes to win a second round Wimbledon match for the first time in his career.

10th seed Grigor Dimitrov also began his tournament with a straight sets win (6-3) (6-4) (7-5) over Dustin Lajovic of Serbia.

Many veterans turned back the clock today, French showman Gael Monfils upset fellow countryman Adrian Mannarino in four sets to set up an encounter against three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka.

Canadian Denis Shapovalov upset Czechia’s 19th seed Nicolas Jarry in a straight sets victory.

It was a wild match for South Africa’s Lloyd Harris, rallying from two sets to none down against American Alex Michelsen. After saving a match point in the match tiebreaker, Harris saw a match point of his own. Harris proceeded to fall three separate times and incredibly, won the rally and the match.

The American men saw optimistic starts to Wimbledon, Brandon Nakashima upset Argentinian Sebastian Baez, while Francis Tiafoe rallied from a two-set deficit to Italian Matteo Arnaldi.

Tommy Paul won a four-set encounter against Spaniard Pedro Martinez. But Ben Shelton finished the night trailing Italian Mattia Bellucci two sets to one, as night fell one London.

Women’s Singles

Before the tournament even started, unfortunately two Belarusians superstars were forced to withdraw from the tournament due to injury. World No. 3 Aryna Sabalenka and former World No.1 Victoria Azarenka’s tournament was grounded before it even began.

Straight set wins from Greece’s Maria Sakkari, Italy’s Jasmine Paolini, Russia’s Daria Kasatkina, and the United States’ Coco Gauff, were promising starts to title contenders.

It was however difficult for Naomi Osaka, who rallied down a break in a decider to beat France’s Diane Parry.

Madison Keys and Emma Navarro of the United States also saw straight set wins, in an optimistic sight for American tennis.

There was a casualty in the top ten where Australian Open finalist Qinwen Zheng fell to New Zealand’s Lulu Sun in three sets.


Novak Djokovic although battling through a knee injury seems to be fit to contend for a title, he’ll begin his run at another Wimbledon final.

Contenders Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev, Stefaonos Tsitsipas, and Hubert Hurkacz all begin their journey in Wimbledon tomorrow as does America’s top ranked player, Taylor Fritz.

In the women’s tournament, we’ll see top ten players in Ons Jabeur, Elena Rybakina, Jessica Pegula, and defending Marketa Vondrousova begin their run at SW19.

It will also be the final Wimbledon for Danielle Collins, who intends to retire at the end of the calendar year.

Tomorrow will see a rematch of the French Open final from 2020 when World No.1 Iga Swiatek faces American Sofia Kenin.

Check back tomorrow for more updates of Wimbledon 2024.



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