Marketa Vondrousova followed in Steffi Graf’s footsteps with an early Wimbledon exit.

Marketa Vondrousova, the reigning Wimbledon champion, joined Steffi Graf in the history books following a shocking first-round exit, but Iga Swiatek and Elena Rybakina advanced to the final 64. Vondrousova was a surprise winner at the All England Club last year and returned to Centre Court on Tuesday to begin her defense of her crown, but she struggled physically in a 6-4, 6-2 defeat to Jessica Bouzas Maneiro in 67 minutes. Vondrousova became only the second defending Wimbledon champion to lose in the first round, following Graf’s loss to Lori McNeil in 1994.

Prior to her 2023 victory, Vondrousova had only won one main-draw match in SW19 and had arrived in the capital following an injury scare in Berlin two weeks before. World number six Vondrousova said she was totally fit, but she suffered three double faults in her opening serve game after being broken right away. Further breakouts were traded, but Spaniard Bouzas Maneiro, ranked 83rd in the world, sealed the opening goal inside 40 minutes. Vondrousova sent down another double-fault at the start of the second set, which was broken again, and she appeared to be agitated with her deteriorating health.

It did not deter Bouzas Maneiro, who continued to play her shots, and the 21-year-old sealed a spectacular first grand slam triumph with a stunning backhand winner. Bouzas Maneiro stated, “This is one of the most important moments of my life, and in my career here on this court, it is incredible. ADVERTISEMENT “The atmosphere here is incredible, and this is the most gorgeous event I’ve ever competed in. So thank you to everyone who came to watch.” Vondrousova, on the other hand, was devastated when her title defence was abruptly halted.

She said, “I was pretty worried since the morning. “I thought practice was fine. Yes, I was afraid today because of my leg as well. But I don’t believe that was the cause. “I felt nervous from the beginning. She was also having a good match. That was also tough. “Overall, it was quite challenging. Going back is also difficult because I believe everyone expects you to win. That is also difficult. I was glad to be back on Centre Court. “It just did not go as planned.”

Elena Rybakina, a former Wimbledon winner, had no such difficulty easing into the second round. Elena Rybakina easily passed Elena-Gabriela Ruse. Elena Rybakina easily passed Elena-Gabriela Ruse (Aaron Chown/PA). Rybakina, who won the All England Club in 2022, defeated Elena-Gabriela Ruse 6-3, 6-1 after 71 minutes on Court One. Fifth seed Jessica Pegula improved on that time, defeating compatriot Ashlyn Krueger 6-2 6-0 in 49 minutes. World No. 1 Iga Swiatek thought to have a banana-skin first-round draw against former Australian Open winner Sofia Kenin, but breezed through 6-3, 6-4.

“You can say I feel more comfortable (on grass), but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s going to be tough on this court anyway because it’s a grand slam,” said Swiatek, a four-time French Open champion.

Judy Murray could not hide her emotions for more than 11 minutes after learning that Emma Raducanu had withdrawn from her mixed doubles performance with her son. “Yes, astonishing,” she punched X in response to a social media post on the development. Her monosyllabic statement conveyed a sense of disappointment. Her grief, shared by many British tennis fans who had been looking forward to the Muraducanu double act on Saturday evening, was understandable.

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