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Wimbledon headlines - day one: Serena Williams, Roger Federer into second round but Elina Svitolina, Grigor Dimitrov, Sloane Stephens upset

  • The five biggest stories from day one at Wimbledon 2018
  • Roger Federer parts with Nike, Serena Williams makes a winning return to Wimbledon, Grigor Dimitrov crashes out and more
Stan Wawrinka celebrates victory over Grigor Dimitrov on day one of Wimbledon 2018 (GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

The five top stories from the first day of Wimbledon 2018: Wins for top seeds like Serena Williams and Roger Federer but Sloane Stephens, Grigor Dimitrov and Sloane Stephens all crash out, plus it's goodbye to Nike from Federer.

Struggling to keep up with all the news from the early rounds at the biggest fortnight in tennis? Have no fear. Here is a quick rundown of the top five stories from day one at Wimbledon 2018 with some of the sport's biggest stars in action on Monday 2 July.

1. Dimitrov, Stephens, Svitolina all out on day one

Sloane Stephens shows her frustration on day one of Wimbledon 2018 (BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)
Elina Svitolina (OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)

Grigor Dimitrov (GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

It was a day to forget for three of the top seeds who all made an earlier than expected exit from Wimbledon 2018. 

Reigning US Open champion Sloane Stephens came in riding high after her run to a second major final at the French Open but the fourth seed's failure to play a grass-court warm-up event cost her as she looked slow and unprepared against Donna Vekic. The big-serving Croatian came out on the wrong end of a heartbreaking defeat to Johanna Konta last year, but loves a grass court and came in well prepared after playing three grass-court events, reaching the semifinals in Nottingham. It paid off as she handed Stephens a 6-1, 6-3 defeat.

Elina Svitolina, the fifth seed, will have to answer more questions about a poor Grand Slam record that stands in contrast to her great record at WTA Tour events after she suffered her second early defeat at a major in a row. After exiting the French Open in the third round at the hands of Mihaela Buzarnescu, it was Mallorca Open champion Tatjana Maria ousted the Ukrainian, again showing the importance of playing warm-up matches on grass to gain confidence as she won in three sets.

And the wait will go on for Grigor Dimitrov, whose game seems so ideally suited to grass, to match or exceed his Wimbledon semifinal showing from 2014 as the sixth seed fell to Stan 'the Man' Wawrinka in four sets. It was one of the toughest first-round draws imaginable for Dimitrov, but nevertheless Wawrinka looked almost unrecognizable from the player who appeared barely fit when he lost to Andy Murray in Eastbourne last week.


(6) Grigor Dimitrov lost to Stan Wawrinka, 6-1, 6-7(3), 6-7(5), 4-6
(16) Borna Coric lost to Daniil Medvedev, 6-7(6), 2-6, 2-6
(23) Richard Gasquet lost to Gael Monfils, 6-7(6), 5-7, 4-6
(28) Filip Krajinovic lost to Nicolas Jarry, 3-6, 6-3, 6-7(5), 4-6
(32) Leonardo Mayer lost to Jan-Lennard Struff, 6-3, 7-6(5), 6-7(5), 6-7(5), 1-6

(4) Sloane Stephens lost to Donna Vekic, 1-6, 3-6
(5) Elina Svitolina lost to Tatjana Maria, 6-7(3), 6-4, 1-6
(16) Coco Vandeweghe lost to Katerina Siniakova, 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-8
(19) Magdalena Rybarikova lost to Sorana Cirstea, 5-7, 3-6
(21) Anastasija Sevastova lost to Camila Giorgi, 1-6, 6-2, 4-6
(31) Zhang Shuai lost to Andrea Petkovic, 4-6, 6-4, 2-6

2. Bad-ass mamas

Not one, not two, not three but four of the victors on day one of Wimbledon 2018 were women who have children, proving that the increasing trend of WTA players starting families without feeling that they need to sacrifice their playing careers (or any degree of their excellence) is here to stay.

Serena Williams (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP) 
Victoria Azarenka (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Tatjana Maria (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

The most high-profile mother in action was seven-time Wimbledon champion Serena Williams, who battled past Arantxa Rus in windy conditions to win 7-5, 6-3 and also saw seeds Elina Svitolina, Zhang Shuai, Sloane Stephens and Coco Vandeweghe go out of her quarter of the draw. Williams gave birth to daughter Alexis Olympia last September.

Victoria Azarenka, whose son Leo was born in December 2016, is a two-time Wimbledon semifinalist and came through against Ekaterina Alexandrova 7-6(4), 6-3 despite a nasty fall, setting up a blockbuster second-round clash against seventh seed Karolina Pliskova.

Tatjana Maria, whose daughter Charlotte was born in 2013, pulled off a huge win against fifth seed Elina Svitolina, building on her recent title run at the Mallorca Open.

And Evgeniya Rodina, also a mother, came through against fellow qualifier Antonia Lottner in three sets.

3. No more Nike for Federer

Roger Federer (GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

Much more interesting than the match that eight-time champion Roger Federer played to open his title defense on Monday, cruising past Dusan Lajovic 6-1, 6-3, 6-4, was the fact that the top seed took the court in Uniqlo attire, effectively announcing the end of a decade-long partnership with Nike and a switch to the Japanese apparel customer.

Federer's Uniqlo contract is apparently the most lucrative ever signed by a sportsperson and will last a decade, fuelling rumours that Federer intends to play until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The Swiss great is still wearing his Nike shoes, however - for now.

The change in sponsor didn't stop Federer from digging deep in his heart, or at least his racquet bag, to hand out a headband to a girl who asked very nicely.

4. (Some) Brits impress

Andy Murray may have broken hearts by pulling out at the eleventh hour, but there was still plenty of British interest on the first day of The Championships.

21-year-old wildcard Harriet Dart didn't get the win but she did manage to give seventh seed Karolina Pliskova quite a scare, showcasing some real competitiveness and composure as well as an impressive backhand as she took a set off the former world no. 1 before falling 6-7(2), 6-2, 1-6.

Harriet Dart (OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)

And 19-year-old Katie Swan had a tremendous Wimbledon debut, beating Irina-Camelia Begu - a player who plays her best tennis on clay, but nevertheless one ranked around 170 places above Swan - 6-2, 6-2 to book a third-round showdown with Mihaela Buzarnescu.

Katie Swan  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

The British men didn't fare so well with Cameron Norrie and Liam Broady making little impression in defeats to former Brit Aljaz Bedene and 2016 Wimbledon runner-up Milos Raonic respectively.

5. Going the distance

Agnieszka Radwanska (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Former Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska was among those who had to work extremely hard on day one, as the Pole - runner-up to Serena Williams in 2012, and currently making her way back from an injury layoff - had to save two match points before defeating Romanian qualifier Elena-Gabriela Ruse, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5.

Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic also had to work very hard before subduing 16th seed Coco Vandeweghe, who battled gamely despite an ankle injury, 6-7(3), 6-3, 8-6.

In the men's draw, four matches went all the way to five sets: Last year's quarterfinalist Gilles Muller beating Michael Mmoh, Sergiy Stakhovsky ousting Joao Sousa, Jan-Lennard Struff upsetting 32nd seed Leonardo Mayer and Ruben Bemelmans edging Steve Johnson 8-6 in the fifth.

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Wimbledon headlines - day one: Serena Williams, Roger Federer into second round but Elina Svitolina, Grigor Dimitrov, Sloane Stephens upset

The five top stories from the first day of Wimbledon 2018: Wins for top seeds like Serena Williams and Roger Federer but Sloane Stephens, Grigor Dimitrov and Sloane Stephens all crash out, plus it's goodbye to Nike from Federer

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