Rafael Nadal begins his 2014 Wimbledon campaign with a win
The World No. 1 sees off Martin Klizan with a 4-6 6-3 6-3 6-3 victory
Roger Federer also advances to the second round after beating Paolo Lorenzi 6-1 6-1 6-3
Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams safely through to second round
He may have fallen at the first hurdle at the All England Club last year, but Rafael Nadal managed to avoid another shock first-round defeat 12 months on.
The Spaniard crashed out to Steve Darcis in 2013 – his first ever opening-round loss at a grand slam – yet was able to see off Slovakia’s Martin Klizan 4-6 6-3 6-3 6-3 this time around, despite an early scare on Centre Court.
The World No. 1 came into the competition in good form having claimed a ninth French Open championship just a few weeks ago, yet the Spaniard found himself one set down after Klizan, ranked 51st in the world, managed to break to take a 5-4 lead in the opener.
That early sting, however, seemed to awaken Nadal from his slumber as the tournament’s second seed began to find his rhythm and went on to claim three straight sets to wrap up the victory.
“For me, always emotions are so high when I’m able to play on this Centre Court,” Nadal told reporters afterwards.
“It’s a magic place and unbelievable memories from this court so I’m very happy to be able to play on it again and for sure go out with a victory.”
The win for Nadal, who is now just three Grand Slam titles off Roger Federer’s record haul of 17 after his latest success at Roland Garros, sets up a second-round tie against Lukas Rosol.
Nadal will need no reminding that the Czech player dumped him out of the tournament at the same stage two years ago.
“Rosol is a very dangerous player, very strong, very powerful shots from the baseline and I know I have to play very well if I want to have chances to win,” Nadal said.
“The important thing is to fight, play with the right tactic and wait for the luck.”
Seven-time champion Roger Federer began his 2014 campaign with a straight-sets victory over Paolo Lorenzi on Court No. 1.
The World No. 4, whose last grand slam win was at Wimbledon in 2012, raced to a 6-1 6-1 6-3 win and was always in control of a match that lasted one hour and 33 minutes.
Fifth seed Stanislas Wawrinka booked his spot in the second round with a victory over Joao Sousa.
The Australian Open champion looked comfortable as he saw off his Portuguese opponent in straight sets with a 6-3 6-4 6-3 win and will next face Yen-Hsun Lu.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, meanwhile, wrapped things up in extremely quick fashion against Jurgen Melzer after their match was suspended on Monday evening due to bad light.
Needing to claim just a game to advance to the second round with the scores at 6-1 3-6 3-6 6-2, the 14th seed racked up four straight points off his serve to win the final set 6-4.
Jerzy Janowicz, last year’s Wimbledon semifinalist, set up a second-round clash with Leyton Hewitt after beating Somdev Devvarman in a five-set thriller.
After losing the first set, the 15th seed hit back and was eventually taken into a decider by Devvarman, to which he held his nerve to run out a 4-6 6-3 6-3 3-6 6-3 winner. Former champion Hewitt advanced after defeating Michal Przysiezny 6-2 6-7 6-1 6-4.
Japan’s Kei Nishikori overcame his first hurdle of the competition in Kenny De Schepper of France with a straight-sets victory.
The 10th seed was made to work, however, and had to edge a tiebreak 7-5 in the second set en route to a 6-4 7-6 7-5 win. His reward is a second-round tie against American Denis Kudla.
Sharapova and Serena advance
The women’s competition also resumed Tuesday as Maria Sharapova, fresh from success at the French Open earlier this month, took just 58 minutes to book her place in the second round.
The fifth seed dropped just one game as she saw off Samantha Murray of Great Britain 6-1 6-0 to set up a tie against Timea Bacsinszky for a place in round three.
Serena Williams also made untroubled progress into the second round coasting past compatriot Anna Tatishvili in straight sets 6-1 6-2.
Top seed Williams is seeking a sixth Wimbledon singles crown and an 18th grand slam singles title overall.
“The reaction from the crowd has been great,” Williams told reporters after the match.
“I love playing at Wimbledon. You dream of playing here when you’re really young.
“To still be playing here is a great honor for me. Every time I step out on that court, it makes me want to keep coming back for years and years.”
Sabine Lisicki, who beat Williams in the fourth round last year, also got her campaign off to a winning start as she saw off Israel’s Julia Glushko winning 6-2 6-1.
The 19th seed will be hoping to go one better at Wimbledon this time around after losing to France’s Marion Bartoli in the 2013 final, will next play Karolina Pliskova.
Agnieszka Radwanska was equally efficient in her dispensing of Andreea Mitu as she also dropped only three games on the way to a first-round win.
The fourth seed raced to a 6-2 6-1 defeat of Romanian Mitu to set up a second-round tie against Casey Dellacqua.
Radwanska’s younger sister Urszula won’t be taking any further part though after going down in straight sets 6-2 6-4 to ninth seed Angelique Kerber from Germany.
Caroline Wozniacki is also safely through to the next round after knocking out Shahar Peer.
The 16th seed, who has never made it past the fourth round of the competition, will meet Naomi Broady of Great Britain in the next stage after defeating Peer 6-3 6-0.
There was disappointment for Sara Errani, however, as the 14th seed was forced to pack her bags early after suffering a three-set defeat at the hands of Caroline Garcia.
Despite losing the first set, Garcia fought back with a 2-6 7-6 7-5 win to set up a meet with Varvara Lepchenko next time out.