LONDON (AP) — French Open finalist Simona Halep and former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki were early winners Friday as Wimbledon moved into the third round under contrasting weather at the All England Club.
Mid-morning rain that delayed play by about 30 minutes gave way to sunny skies by early afternoon. But there was a threat of additional rain and even thunderstorms as top-seeded Novak Djokovic played Gilles Simon in the first match on Centre Court.
Halep, who lost the Roland Garros final to Maria Sharapova, advanced with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 win over Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine in a second-round match. Wozniacki moved into the fourth round following a 6-3, 6-0 win over Ana Konjuh of Croatia.
It’s the first time Halep has advanced past the second round in her fourth Wimbledon.
No. 22-seeded Ekaterina Makarova of Russia beat Caroline Garcia of France 7-5, 6-3, and Belinda Bencic of Switzerland defeated Victoria Duval of the United States 6-4, 7-5.
In the first completed men’s match, No. 19 Feliciano Lopez of Spain beat Ante Pavic of Croatia 6-4, 7-6 (4) 7-5.
Later Friday, two former champions were scheduled to meet on Centre Court – Venus Williams and Petra Kvitova. Five of Williams’ seven Grand Slam titles came at the All England Club, most recently in 2008, while Kvitova won in 2011 for her lone major.
In the following match, defending champion Andy Murray took a 15-match winning streak at the All England Club into the third round against 27th-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain.
Murray won six matches in a row at the place to earn a gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics, then seven in a row during Wimbledon last year en route to the title, plus another two so far this week.