Defending champ Kerber fights back
BIRMINGHAM—Defending champion Angelique Kerber made a typically tenacious comeback from a set down and a day’s delay to reach the quarter-finals of the Wimbledon warmup event in Birmingham on Friday.
She did it with a 5-7, 6-2, 62 win over Daria Gavrilova, an improving young world number 50 from Australia who ended yesterday’s rain-ruined schedule within two points of snatching the first set. She duly did that on Friday, capturing Kerber’s service game, which restarted with the titleholder 0-30 down. But thereafter the German displayed admirable motivation in stilldamp conditions and found a good rhythm with solid groundstroke hitting.
Meanwhile, Andy Murray was given a brief scare by fellow-Briton Kyle Edmund before earning safe passage through to the semi-final as he continues attempts to claim a record fifth title at the Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club. The fourtime champion won the opening set but his Great Britain Davis Cup colleague broke twice in the second to level the match.
But the two-time grand slam champion showed his class in the decider with two breaks of Edmund’s serve to prevail 6-4 36 6-1 and set up a last four clash with Croatian Marin Cilic in a repeat of the 2013 final in south London, which Murray won in three sets. Edmund meanwhile emerges with plenty of credit from the first ever British men’s quarter-final clash in the professional era at the venue.
“I train with Kyle a lot so I know how good he is. He is a big strong guy and has a very powerful game,” the world number two told BBC Sport. —Agencies
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Angelique Kerber of Germany returns a shot against Daria Gavrilova during Wimbledon warm-up match in Birmingham.