Bouzas Maneiro dumps out Wimbledon champion Vondrousova in first round

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Twelve months after writing her name in Wimbledon history, Marketa Vondrousova made history of a different sort on Tuesday when she was beaten in the first round by Jessica Bouzas Maneiro, a Spaniard who had never won a grand slam match before. The Czech was totally out of sorts as she went down 6-4, 6-2, becoming the first defending women’s singles champion to lose in round one since Steffi Graf was beaten by ALori McNeil in 1994. Lleyton Hewitt was the last male champion to lose at the first hurdle, beaten by Ivo Karlovic in 2003.

Vondrousova, the sixth seed, had pulled out of the warm-up event in Berlin after suffering a nasty fall and struggled from the start against Bouzas Maneiro, double-faulting three times in the first game. Ranked No 83 in the world, the 21-year-old Bouzas Maneiro played one warm-up event on grass, in Italy, and lost in the first round, but on Tuesday, she was calm, poised and took full advantage of her off-colour opponent to send another big name out, after Aryna Sabalenka’s withdrawal on day one.

Marketa Vondrousova crouches during her defeatView image in fullscreen

“I’m really happy,” Bouzas Maneiro said. “This is one of the most amazing moments of my life and my career. I was a little nervous at first but I don’t know, it’s so nice here, I felt at home on Centre Court. Marketa’s a great player, she won here last year, so I had no pressure. I just wanted to enjoy the match.”

Elena Rybakina, the champion here in 2022, came into the tournament as the fourth seed but with doubts about her health, having pulled out of a number of events this year through illness. The Kazakh fell a break down early against Elena-Gabriela Ruse of Romania but ran out a comfortable 6-3, 6-1 winner in the end. The fifth seed, Jessica Pegula of the USA, beat her compatriot Ashlyn Krueger 6-2, 6-0 to reach round two.


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